Flash Player 10 maximum bitmap size

September 27th, 2010 by Kawika Heftel

ActionScript 3Did you know that Flash Player 10 cannot handle bitmaps larger than roughly 8,000 pixels on a side?

Technically, the hard limit is 16,777,215 total image pixels, with a limit on each dimension of 8,192 pixels.  This information I obtained only after much Googling and is only available in an obscure Adobe tech note.

I ran into this limit today while creating levels for a Flex platform game.  I had a level that was represented by a bitmap that was almost 13,000 pixels wide.  Since it was only 569 pixels tall it was less than 8,000,000 total pixels, well under the Flash Player limit, but because the width was so large Flash Player still choked on it.

The solution?  I broke the giant bitmap into pieces that were smaller than the limit and combined them in code.

Here is one case where code-based paradigm beats out a design-based paradigm – the Flash IDE wouldn’t let me create a MovieClip of that size (12,900 pixels), but AS3 would.

Ah, Flash.  You have so many amazing features and abilities that I love you for.  And so many quirks that I hate you for.

I hope that this helps someone out there!

Related posts:

  1. 3D MovieClips with Flex and ActionScript 3

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