Creating a GIF animation from PNG files

Is there a tool to create a gif animation from a set of png files?

I tried the convert command from the ImageMagick suite, but this doesn’t always succeed. Also, I have several issues with this:

  1. I can’t tell what the progress is.
  2. No matter what I try, the -delay flag doesn’t change the frame rate of the gif animation.
  3. convert determines the frame order based upon the alphabetical order of the files names. This means that name500.png will be placed right after name50.png and not after name450.png I can fix this by adding 0’s but this is annoying.
Asked By: Yotam

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Update:

Use convert for the png-to-gif, then use gifsicle for the animation.
It’s not a One App To Do It All solution, but scriptable, for sure.


GIMP can create animated gifs and provides control for timing/delay and repeat, etc

Answered By: gregnotcraig

convert is a handy command line tool to do that.
cd to the folder containing your png-files and run this command:

convert -delay 10 -loop 0 *.png animation.gif

Source: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1132058

Answered By: RobinJ

Newer versions of ffmpeg have no -sameq (see faq) but do have GIF support.

ffmpeg -i %03d.png output.gif

Where %03d is the frame ID in 3 digits.

You may also try to use ffmpeg to create a movie out of a sequence of images and then convert the movie to a GIF animation (again using ffmpeg).

# cf. http://pages.uoregon.edu/noeckel/MakeMovie.html

# first convert an image sequence to a movie
ffmpeg -sameq -i %03d.jpg output.mp4

# ... and then convert the movie to a GIF animation
ffmpeg -i output.mp4 -pix_fmt rgb24 -s qcif -loop_output 0 output.gif
Answered By: nano

The convert‘s --delay option only applies to the next image on the command line. So convert -delay 10 * will only set the delay of the first frame to 0.1 second. The option need to be repeated:

convert $(for a in *; do printf -- "-delay 10 %s " $a; done; ) result.gif

For your sorting need, convert does not sort frames, the shell globing * does. If you know your frames are numbered from 0 to 700, you can just compute the numbers yourself:

convert $(for ((a=0; a<700; a++)); do printf -- "-delay 10 name%s.png " $a; done;) result.gif
Answered By: BatchyX

ImageMagick can generate a good quality gif animation. Check this video – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OFusYizJ-bA

Answered By: xyz

In regards to point 2

The version of ImageMagick “display” I have (ImageMagick 6.7.2-7 2017-01-12) ignores the frame rate set using the convert command to produce the animated gif. Try another program to view the animate gif like firefox.

Answered By: heartypanther

ffmeg important GIF options + test data

To complement this answer:

wget -O opengl-rotating-triangle.zip https://github.com/cirosantilli/media/blob/master/opengl-rotating-triangle.zip?raw=true
unzip opengl-rotating-triangle.zip
cd opengl-rotating-triangle
ffmpeg 
  -framerate 60 
  -pattern_type glob 
  -i 'tmp.*.png' 
  -r 15 
  -vf scale=512:-1 
  out.gif 
;

The test data was generated with: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/3191978/how-to-use-glut-opengl-to-render-to-a-file/14324292#14324292

The important ffmpeg options I wanted to highlight are:

  • -pattern_type glob: convenient way to select images
  • -framerate 60 and -r 15: assume 60 FPS on input images (ffmpeg cannot know otherwise since no FPS data in images as in video formats), pick one every 4 images so reduce size (4 == 60 / 15)
  • -vf scale=512:-1: set the width, scale height proportionally, usually to reduce size and save space

See also:

Tested in Ubuntu 18.10, ffmpeg 4.0.2.

ffmpeg can do it all for you but it is really hard to get your head around it. I wrote a tiny script to do the job so I don’t have to remember. It runs through the images twice: pass "a" to work out an optimal colour palette, then pass "b" to actually create the gif file using the created palette.
Paste the following into a text file:

#!/bin/bash
ffmpeg -framerate 24 -start_number_range 999 -f image2 -i $1%3d.png -filter_complex "[0:v] split [a][b];[a] palettegen [p];[b][p] paletteuse" $1.gif

Save the file as "creategif", or something else to your taste, make it executable and put it in the same directory as your sequence of pngs

For a sequence foobar004.png, foobar005.png, foobar006.png…

open a command line and cd to the directory with everything in it then type

./creategif foobar

and it will create a file foobar.gif from the png’s. You could add a few parameters to the script to make it a bit more flexible, but I find it easier to just hack the script if I want a different framerate or something. Many thanks to whoever it was on this forum that steered me in the right direction a few years back.

Answered By: Hooston

In order to get the frames in numeric order (i.e. 1.png, 2.png) rather than alphabetical, do this:

files=$(ls | sort --version-sort); convert -delay 10 loop 0 $files animation.gif
Answered By: cjm2671
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