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Spark AR Studio Frequently Asked Questions

Signing In

To sign in to Spark AR Studio:

  1. Open Spark AR Studio.
  2. Enter the email address or phone number associated with your Facebook account.
  3. Enter the password for your Facebook account and click Sign In.

To log out:

  1. Click File.
  2. Select Log Out.

You can only use Spark AR Studio after signing into your Facebook account. Using your Facebook account makes it easier to:

  • Submit your finished effect for people to see and share
  • Receive notifications relating to the approval process

Project and Workflow Management

Unless you start AR Studio by opening a .fbfxproj file, a new project will be set up for you when you start the program.

If you're already using AR Studio, click File in the top left of your screen and then select New.

You can edit or enable various properties for your project, such as:

  • Multiple faces
  • Device motion
  • Export settings.

To do this, click Project in the navigation bar and then select Edit Properties.

To save your project:

  1. Click File in the navigation bar and then select either Save or Save As...
  2. Enter a title, location and tags, if required
  3. Click Save

To help with your workflow, we've included some keyboard shortcuts.

In the Navigator and Inspector panels:

  • Command - z undoes your last action
  • Command - 1 or 2 switches between the Scene and Layers tabs
  • Command - click deselects objects in the Navigator
  • Command - 0 shows or hides the Navigator
  • Command - Alt - 0 does the same with the Inspector
  • Command - C copies and Command - V pastes
  • Alt, when inserting an object via the Insert menu, inserts the object as a child of the object selected in the Scene tab

In the Viewport:

  • Command - click and drag rotates
  • Alt - click and drag pans
  • A two-finger click and drag up and down zooms

In the Simulator Window:

  • 1, 2, 3 or 4 will rotate the camera by 90 degree intervals and will reset the X rotation
  • Holding down Shift will lock the orbit to a single axis, either X or Y.

Assets and Objects

Delete

To delete something, right-click on it in the Scene panel and select Delete from the menu. It will no longer be part of your effect, but it will still be included in the project.

To completely remove something from the project, delete it from the Assets panel too.

Rename

To rename something:

  1. Right click on the object or asset in the Scene panel or Assets panel.
  2. Select Rename.
  3. Add the new name.

Resize

How to resize something depends on the object you want to resize.

For rectangles and the canvas:

  1. Select the object in the Scene panel.
  2. Go to the Inspector.
  3. Edit the Size property.

For all other objects:

  1. Select the object in the Scene panel.
  2. Go to the Inspector.
  3. Edit the Scale property.

You can also change the scale, rotation and position of objects in the Viewport directly, using the Manipulators.

Yes. You can change an object's properties so that, for example, it appears while the user is capturing the effect but does not appear in the final video or photo. To do this:

  1. Select the object in the Scene tab.
  2. Go to the Inspector panel.
  3. If you want the object to be visible while the user is capturing the effect, check the box next to Preview.
  4. If you want the object to be visible in the final video or photo, check the box next to Capture.

Both boxes can be checked at the same time.

The Face Tracker

To make an object track your face, you have to make it the child of a Face Tracker.

To do this:

  1. Click Insert
  2. Select Face Tracker and then click Insert
  3. Go to the Scene tab and drag the object file onto the face tracker

Note: To insert objects as children of other objects directly, you can also right-click on the parent in the Scene tab, select Insert and then select the object you want to insert from the menu.

You can add more than one face tracker to a scene, but you can’t add more than one to a face. You would add more than one face tracker if you wanted to track multiple faces within a scene.

Visualizing Effects

The Viewport enables to you position, scale and rotate your objects in a 3D space, but it isn't an accurate preview of the output. That's why we have the Simulator Window.

The Simulator Window is a separate view for previewing the output of any changes you make in the Viewport and is an accurate representation of what the effect will look like on your device.

The Viewport and the Simulator Window are designed to be used in sync, but if you want to hide either one, you can.

Docking the Simulator Window will maximize it and hide the Viewport. To dock the Simulator Window, click on it to show the buttons and click the third one from the left.

To hide the Simulator window, go to View in the navigation bar and click Hide Simulator.

If you have more than one camera input available (a camera on a laptop and one on a connected monitor, for example) you can choose which one Spark AR Studio uses. To do this, long-press on Video in the Toolbar and select the camera you want to use from the menu.

Mirroring and the Spark AR Player app

To test the effects you build in Spark AR Studio on the Spark AR Player app, you'll need:

  • An iOS or Android device.
  • A USB cable.
  • A computer with Spark AR Studio installed.
  • A saved project.

To test your effect:

  1. Connect your device to your computer.
  2. Open the app on your device.
  3. Open your project in AR Studio.
  4. Click the device icon in the toolbar.
  5. Select Send To Connected Device - you'll see your device listed here.
  6. Click Send.

You should now see the effect playing on the device.

The Spark AR Player app stores a version of your effect whenever you go to the Spark AR Studio Toolbar and click Send under Send to Connected Device. This means you can view effects that you've previously mirrored on your device, without being connected to your computer or the Internet.

Yes, if you're offline, you can still view effects that you mirrored with the Spark AR Player app previously.

To toggle between versions of your effect:

  1. Tap the menu in the top left.
  2. Select the effect.
  3. Select the version and tap Done.

The Send button in Spark AR Studio is only visible when a mobile device is connected to your computer via a USB cable.

If you're having trouble previewing your effect with the Spark AR Player app, make sure:

  1. You have the latest versions of both Spark AR Studio and the app. If the tool and the app versions are incompatible, you won't be able to mirror your effect.
  2. Your device is connected to your computer via USB cable correctly.
  3. In the Toolbar under Send to Connected Device you've clicked Send.

Compression and Exporting

When you choose the texture format, you are choosing to prioritize either file size or in-memory size. If you want a smaller effect file size, choose uncompressed. If you want a smaller in-memory size, choose ETC.

An uncompressed effect uses either a PNG or JPG image file. Using either one of these formats reduces the image file size when exporting the effect, but both of these files expand to the full raw image on loading.

ETC textures have a fixed compression ratio. This means that the image file can be larger than the equivalent PNG or JPG, but will be smaller than the full raw image. On loading, ETC textures remain the same size, which is smaller than the equivalent PNG or JPG.

To edit your export settings:

  1. Click Project in the navigation bar
  2. Select Edit Properties
  3. Go to the Export tab and edit your settings

Note: You can also navigate to this tab by clicking Export in the Toolbar, then Export Options at the bottom of the window.

Submitting and Sharing Effects

You can submit and publish effects to both Facebook and Instagram. Messenger is currently in closed beta - available to select partners only.

Reporting Problems and Bugs

To report a bug in Spark AR Studio:

  1. Open Spark AR Studio.
  2. Click Help in the Menu bar.
  3. Select Report.

Or, click the bug button in the Menu bar.

When you're reporting the bug, make sure:

  1. The title is clear and explains what has happened. For example: 'Mirroring: Can't mirror from iOS device'.
  2. You've clearly explained the error and explained how to reproduce it.
  3. You've included screenshots, if possible.
  4. You've attached a file, if relevant.

To report a bug in Spark Hub:

  1. Open Spark Hub.
  2. Click the gear icon in the Menu bar.
  3. Select Report a Problem.

When you're reporting a bug, make sure:

  1. The title is clear and explains what has happened. For example, 'Test link: Effect not loading on iPhone 6'.
  2. You've include the Effect ID.
  3. You've mentioned whether your effect is in draft, review or live.
  4. If it's an issue with loading the effect on a device, you've specified the device type, User ID and the approximate date and time that you encountered the problem.

If your problem is with either the test link or share link, please specify which.

If you're using an iOS device

You can easily report bugs straight from your device through 'Rage Shaking'. Once you've enabled 'Rage Shaking', all you need to do is shake your phone to report a bug.

To enable Rage Shaking, follow the instructions on this page.

Once you've enabled Rage Shaking, just shake your phone every time an effect doesn't work.

For non-iOS devices

  1. Open Spark Hub.
  2. Click the gear icon in the Menu bar.
  3. Select Report a Problem.

The more detail you include in your report, the easier it will be for us to fix the problem. Try to include:

  1. Your username.
  2. Steps to reproduce the problem.
  3. The app name and version.
  4. The platform, for example iOS, Android or both.
  5. The Effect ID.
  6. The date and time of the failure.
  7. Which devices you're experiencing issues on.
  8. Screenshots and recordings, if you have them.

If you're using an iOS device

  1. Open Spark Hub.
  2. Click the gear icon in the Menu bar.
  3. Select Report a Problem.

The more detail you include in your report, the easier it will be for us to fix the problem. Try to include:

  1. Your username.
  2. Steps to reproduce the problem.
  3. The app name and version.
  4. The platform, for example iOS, Android or both.
  5. The Effect ID.
  6. The date and time of the failure.
  7. Which devices you're experiencing issues on.
  8. Screenshots and recordings, if you have them.

For non-iOS devices

You can easily report bugs straight from your device by 'Rage Shaking'. Once you've enabled 'Rage Shaking', all you need to do is shake your phone to report a bug.

To enable Rage Shaking:

  1. Open Instagram.
  2. Go to Settings.
  3. Tap Report an Issue.

Instagram will ask if you want to enable Rage Shake. Once you've enabled it, just shake your phone every time an effect doesn't work.

Troubleshooting

Please first check that you are downloading Spark AR Studio from the correct URL.

If you are still having trouble downloading Spark AR Studio make sure your computer meets the minimum system requirements. for Spark AR Studio.

The following hardware does not render Spark AR Studio correctly:

  • Intel HD3000 does not run, OpenGL error.
  • Geforce 920M - does not render correctly.
  • Radeon R7 m360 - does not render correctly.
  • Radeon R5 M330 - does not render correctly.
  • Nvidia GT240 - does not render correctly.
  • Geforce m310m - does not render correctly.

Spark AR Studio for Windows

This is a known issue for creators using a Logitech WebCam Drivers which contain problematic DLLs. To fix this:

  1. Go to the folder C:\Windows\System32.
  2. Either rename the file lvcod64.dll so the new file name is backup_lvcod64.dll, or delete the file.

Your webcam will still work in other applications.

Only the default camera is supported. If you want to use a different camera, set it as the default camera in your system settings.

If you have more than one project open at the same time, the camera will only work in one of the projects. Switch to another video source instead.

If you change video source when the playback is paused, you won't see the first frame of the newly selected video source. Instead, you'll see the last frame of the video source that was playing when you clicked pause.

When you press Play, the newly selected video will start playing.

On some hardware, bundled videos flicker at the end of the loop.

When Spark AR Studio moves from an external display window, e.g. an external monitor, to an internal display, the video will continue to the final frame and then stop. Selecting the camera as an alternative video source will cause the video to be displayed upside down.

To stop this from happening, move the Spark AR Studio window to the internal display before you disconnect the external display.

Objects are imported in real world scale. This means they can appear very large or very small, depending on the units used to make them.

You can automatically scale objects on import to a size that will fit better in your Spark AR effect. To do this:

  1. Select Spark AR Studio in the Menu bar.
  2. Select Preferences.
  3. Check the box next to Automatically scale imported 3D models.

Or, change the scale of 3D objects using the Manipulators in the Toolbar or by adjusting their Scale value in the Inspector.

If you've moved or deleted files from the project directory, they'll be missing from your project. Replace the assets in the project folder.

To mirror your effect, you'll need to:

  1. Install Spark AR Player on your device.
  2. Connect your device to your computer, using a USB Cable.
  3. Open an effect, and click Mirror in Spark AR Studio.

If you've followed these steps and you're mirroring an effect to an iOS device, you might still see a message that says 'No Mobile Devices Found'. This could be because you haven't installed iTunes onto your computer. Download and install iTunes", and try again.

If you're seeing error messages when attempting to start Spark AR Studio - for example 'MSVCP140.dll', 'CONCRT140.dll' or 'VCRUNTIME140.dll not found', install the Microsoft Visual C++ 2015 Redistributable Update 3.

Join the Spark AR Creator's community

Find inspiration, see examples, get support, and share your work with a network of creators.

Join Community

Join the Spark AR Creator's community

Find inspiration, see examples, get support, and share your work with a network of creators.

Join Community

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