"open into layer" not working as expected

I'm having a hard time understanding how File > "open into layer..." works.  Perhaps someone can fill in the gap here and tell me what I'm missing.

If I am looking at a clip in RV, and I want to load in a 2nd clip for comparison, I would expect to hit "open into layer..." and add the 2nd clip, at which point I could A/B the 2 clips by cycling the stack.

But I invoke "open into layer..." and select my new clip, and it appears to do nothing.  The new clip is not loaded into the session manager.  No error in the shell or console.  Nothing at all happens, really, other than my cache refreshing.  I would expect my new clip to be added to the session and to the stack.

Instead, it seems like I have to use "open," to add a 2nd clip to the session, which by default loads in sequentially, and then I have to toggle over to the stack mode to compare the clips.  Which, I guess is one way to go about it, but took me a few tries to arrive at being able to do it - so not intuitive or efficient, and I'm really curious what "open into layer" does since it doesn't appear to do what I want.

Hoping someone can set me straight.  Thanks!


  • 0
    Alan Trombla

    Hi J,

    The problem is frankly the overloaded term "layer".  RV operates on "sources".  Source holds some media and can be arranged in a sequence, a layout (like "tiled"), or a stack, among others.  A single source can hold multiple "layers", for example EXR files can hav any number of layers that represent multiple AOVs.  Or a source can have video and audio layers, or left and right eyes for stereo.  So "Open Into Layer" should be used in these cases (IE adding audio, or adding the right eye for stereo, etc).

    To load multiple sources for comparison, use "Open ..." to add the "B" source media, then Tools/Over to arrange them in a Stack, and Tools/Wipes to wipe between them, or "(" and ")" to cycle the stack, as you noted.  You can also do this from the command line:

    rv A.mov B.mov -wipe

    Hope that clarifies,


  • 0
    J Bills

    yep, sounds good.  session > source > layer.  I get it now, and I can't think of a better label. 

    i think secretly I was just looking for a way to quickly browse, stack sources and cycle with less clicks, but that should be easy to script. all good, thanks for the quick reply