Animation Studio doesn’t have very many preferences to set—in fact, there’s only one! It’s an important one though, because it determines how your added images look in your animation.

When you add (import) images to a project, the image is converted from its original format to the BMP format. If the image uses more than 256 colors, it will be converted to use a maximum of 256 colors. To better understand why this happens, please read the Introduction to Animated GIFs.

Creating a bit of random noise in the image so that it doesn’t look awkward is called dithering. Many dithering methods have been developed to do this, because some images work better with a certain type of method than with others. If you are importing your images and they look weird, you may want to try another dither mode.

To switch dither modes, open the Preferences window by going to Edit > Preferences. Select a dither mode from the drop-down menu and click OK.

The various modes are quite complicated, but here’s a basic explanation of each available method:

Nearest color matching w/o error correction

This method simply converts the image without dithering, using the closest match for each color.

Floyd-Steinberg Error Diffusion

This is the default dithering method, and usually the best option. It creates a very fine-grained dither that diffuses to neighboring pixels.

Stucki Error Diffusion

This method creates coarse-grained dithering, but sharpens the image a bit.

Sierra Error Diffusion

This somewhat faster method creates coarse-grained dithering but tends to produce few visual artifacts, or visible noise/glitches.

Jarvis, Judice & Ninke Error Diffusion

This is generally the most accurate coarse-grained dithering mode, and also creates very few visual artifacts.

Stevenson & Arche Error Diffusion

This coarse-grained dithering mode usually produces converted images with a higher color contrast.

Burkes Error Diffusion

This coarse-grained dithering mode is fast, but can produce somewhat erratic results.