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To overlay bugs or lower thirds on the switcher, the file format must be Targa (TGA), and if you want transparency (you probably do), then the file needs to be set up a very specific way. Photoshop does not automatically do this for you, so here’s how I’ve gotten it to work:
- Create your graphics as a PSD file. If you need several names for lower thirds, create them all in a single, layered PSD for easier tweaking.
- Hide/show the layers that you need for the first lower third, then go to File > Save as… and save out a PNG file.
- Open that PNG file and cmd-click (ctrl-click on a PC) on the layer’s icon in the layers palette. This should make a selection around any visible pixels.
- On the bottom of the Channels palette is a series of buttons. The 2nd from the left looks like a dark rectangle with a white circle in the middle. Click it to save the current selection to an alpha channel.
- Back on the layers palette, add a layer below the current layer and fill this new layer completely with black (0,0,0)
- If the layer is 16 or 32-bits per channel, convert it to 8 (Image > Mode > 8 Bits/Channel).
- Go to File > Save as…, under Format: choose Targa, and make sure the checkbox next to Alpha Channels is selected. Click Save.
The resulting TGA file is now ready to be transferred to M1 or M2 of the Crossover.