Bink Video!

Bink FAQ

This is a list of frequently asked questions about Bink. Almost all common questions are handled here, so whenever you are having trouble, come here first!

If you don't find the answers you need here, or in the rest of the help files, please e-mail our technical support staff.

Bink Frequently Asked Questions:

My game doesn't work. Help?
Please contact the game maker - we can't support the games, we don't have the source code, and we don't know how any specific game uses our libraries.
When I try to convert an MOV file from my camera to an AVI, the playback is too short, or the AVI is broken. What's up?
We rely on QuickTime to read MOV files and on some machines, it returns garbage results - we have no idea why (some even have the same QT version, same machine type, etc). Sometimes uninstalling QuickTime and then reinstalling, helps. We don't have any other suggestions.
Someone told me to get a new Bink DLL or to download the RAD Video Tools to get a new DLL to fix my game - why doesn't this help?
Because it's lousy advice. Bink DLLs are NOT replacable! If you copy a different version of the DLL onto another pre-compiled application (like a game), then you are likely to crash. The RAD Video Tools don't even have the Bink DLL built into them, so this will have absolutely no effect. Please contact your game maker for support.
When I compressing or converting some movies, I don't get any sound or I get an "error opening audio file" message - what's up?
The RAD Video Tools uses QuickTime to import compressed sound formats. Make sure you have the latest version of QuickTime from installed with all of the optional components. Since almost all computers have QuickTime installed, this usually means that the optional components are missing. To fix this, redownload QuickTime and choose "custom" installation - then mark all of the optional components and wait for everything to be downloaded and installed.

If that doesn't help, then you may be trying to convert a protected movie. QuickTime allows the movie creators to mark a movie as playback only - no saving or exporting allowed. When this happens, Bink can still read the video, but the audio is locked into the QT file. This is just a QuickTime copy protection feature - there is no way around it.
I get a "Windows crashed while reading this file", or "Windows crashed when writing the video frame", or "Windows crashed while submitting new audio", or "QuickTime crashed when reading this file", etc. What's going on?
This is not a Bink error. This means that Windows or QuickTime crashed when we asked it to perform a task (like decompressing or compressing a frame). There is nothing RAD can do about these problems - this is a problem with either Windows, QuickTime, the input file that you are using (it could be corrupted), or the codec that you are using. We can't help you with these errors, because it isn't in our code. For technical support, you can try contacting your hardware manufacturer, Microsoft, Apple, or the codec vendor.
Can Bink read my AVI files that are larger than 2 GBs?
It does now! We now include a DirectShow importer and it can read AVI files larger than 2 GB (which are technically OpenDML files).
Can Bink convert out to an AVI file that is larger than 2 GBs?
No, we use Windows to write out the AVI file which uses the original AVI format, rather than the OpenDML extensions.
Is there a way to automatically choose the output AVI codec in batch mode?
Sorry, but no, there isn't. We create the AVI file using the high level Windows AVIFile functions (which always ask for the parameters).
Which video codecs can you import from?
Any that can be used in DirectShow or QuickTime. If Media Player or the QuickTime player can play it, then we can usually convert it.
Why aren't there any codecs listed on my machine when I convert to AVI?
Probably because you haven't installed them. The RAD Video Tools doesn't include any AVI codecs - those are up to you to track down and install.
I get an "Error opening, 'filename'" message when compressing or converting one of my files.
This just means Bink doesn't have an importer for the file that you are trying to convert. This can happen for one of the following reasons:
  • It's a QuickTime movie and you don't have QuickTime installed.
  • It's an AVI or QuickTime movie that uses a video codec that isn't installed or is installed improperly.
  • It's a QuickTime with other non-video tracks (like button and input tracks) that prevent Bink from playing the movie. Some QT files make the user click on a "play" button to start the movie. There isn't a way to convert these movies.
  • It's simply a corrupted file.
Basically, when you get this error, the only recourse is to create the file in another format - try an uncompressed AVI or a QT.

Please note that RAD does not provide technical support for files that cannot be imported - you must simply use another format. If you didn't create the original file, and therefore cannot convert to another file format, then you will not be able to use the RAD Video Tools on that file.
I get an "Error creating the output AVI file" message when converting one of my files to an AVI.
This message means that Windows failed to create the new AVI file. This can happen for one of the following reasons:
  • 1) You are trying to create a file on a read-only device like a CD-ROM.
  • 2) You are trying to create a file in a directory where you have insufficient file rights.
  • 3) You don't have enough disk space to create the new file.
  • 4) If none of the other problems are the cause, then that usually means you have a corrupted Windows multimedia subsytem. This happens when either:
    1. your machine wasn't originally setup with any multimedia functions at all (older Win98 installations have this problem)
    2. one of the Windows codecs is corrupted and is preventing Windows from creating any AVI files.
    If you have this unfortunate problem, then the only solution that we have heard to be successful is a re-installation of the operating system.
How can I play a Bink videos or Bink compiled EXEs on a Mac?
Just download the latest Mac Bink Player, highlight file and click Play!
How do I change the default playback options when I double click on a movie in the main window or from the Windows Explorer?
First, highlight a Bink file, then click the "Advanced play" button, choose the default settings you'd like, and then click the "Set as Quick" button.
How can I remove a Bink or Smacker audio track?
Highlight the file, hit "Mix in Sound" and for the filename enter '-' (a single minus sign), enter the track number that you want to remove and then hit "Mix..."
How do I redistribute Bink files?
We have several options for redistributing Bink files. We have tried to handle most licensing situations, but it you don't see a license that works for you - just give us a call. We're happy that you're using Bink, and we want to make distribution easy!
  1. For non-commerical use, your first distribution option is to accompany your Bink files with one of the players from the RAD Video Tools. These utilities all display a RAD Game Tools credit. You can distribute these utilities for no licensing fees as long as you do NOT circumvent this notice and if your use is non-commmercial. Any attempt to hide the notice voids your right to distribute the files.
  2. The second distribution option is our Bink SDK. With the SDK, you have complete control over the entire Bink decompression process. The Bink SDK is licensed on a per-product or per-site basis.
Again, we are committed to making distribution easy, so if you have any questions about the distribution options, just give us a call at 425.893.4300, or drop us an E-mail.
How can I batch process files?
The RAD Video Tools now have a batch processing editor built right in. Just set the switches that you want to use and then click the "Batch" button. The RAD Batch Editor window will open and you'll be able to control the batch steps to perform.

Additionally, most of the RAD Video Tools are accessible as stand-alone utilities, so you can use them in standard DOS batch files.
  • Bink compressor: bink.exe
  • Bink mixer: binkmix.exe
  • Bink converter: binkconv.exe
  • Bink player: binkplay.exe
  • Smacker compressor: smack.exe
  • Smacker mixer: smackmix.exe
  • Smacker player: smackplw.exe
To get a list of the available switches for each command, simply run the command from the DOS command line with no parameters at all. A help window will appear with all of the available switches.

To use these commands in a batch file, you need to know two tricks. First, tell the batch file to wait until the Bink command finishes before continuing to the next line in the batch file. To do this under Windows 95/98/NT, simply preceed each line in the batch file with "start /w".

Secondly, you need to tell Bink not to wait for the Done button to be pressed before exiting. We need the commands to exit immediately so that the batch file can continue running. To do this, add a "/#" to the end of the Bink command.

So, for example, to compress a file, you would use a command something like this:

"start /w bink input.avi output.bik /#"
How can I extract the original Bink from an EXE compiled Bink or Smacker file without recompressing it?
Highlight the EXE file, and hit "Mix in Sound". For the sound input name, enter '-' (a single minus sign), and then enter -1 for the track number (a track number that can't exist in the Bink file). Then hit Mix - the mixer will then copy the Bink file out of the EXE file.
How can I update the switches or the built-in player in an EXE compiled Bink or Smacker file?
Highlight the EXE and choose "Advanced play" - the EXE settings will be used in the Advanced Player. To change them, choose "Make EXE" and remake a new EXE with new settings (and it will contain the latest player version).
How can I convert from one graphics file format to another? For example, BMPs to FLC, GIFs to JPGs, TGAs to PCXs, FLC to TIFs, etc?
Use the Convert button in the RAD Video Tools to convert from one file format to another.
  1. highlight the file (or files) that you want to convert
  2. click the "Convert a file" button to open the RAD Converter
  3. click the "Output Type" button to choose the output type
  4. hit the "Convert" button at the right.
Note that the RAD Video Tools can also convert a series of single image files into an AVI and vice versa too!
How can I convert from one sound format to another?
Use the Convert button in the RAD Video Tools to convert from one file format to another.
  1. highlight the input WAV file
  2. click the "Convert a file" button to open the RAD Converter
  3. change the options on the "Convert Audio" section to the output sound format you want
  4. hit the "Convert" button at the right.
How can I join multiple graphics files together?
Use list files to join files together.
  1. from the the main screen of the RAD Video Tools, highlight the files that you want to join
  2. click the "List files..." button
  3. set the order of the files, and save the list file
  4. click the "Close" button to return to the main screen
  5. at the main screen, select the list file you just made, and hit the "Convert a file" button
  6. finally, click the "Convert" button to the right side of the screen to start the joining.
How can I join multiple sound files together?
Use the Convert button to join multiple sound files together.
  1. highlight the files that you want to join
  2. click the "Convert a file" button
  3. click the "Output Type" button to choose the output format type
  4. hit the "Convert" button at the right.
Can I crop my video? How can I process just a portion of a frame?
Processing a portion of a frame is often referred to as "cropping" the frame. Bink, Smacker and the converter all allow you to select offsets and a width and height so you can compress a subset of the video frame.