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I searched the App Store for "animated GIF" but the only returned app was one to convert a movie file into an animated GIF. I need to go the other way: I have a series of screenshots taken of an app that I'm a beta tester for. These are the standard PNG files created by OS X's ⌘+⇧+4 keyboard shortcut. They show the sequence of events I use to reproduce a display bug.

When I say "App Store quality" I mean they are native Cocoa apps. These apps generally have attention paid to user interface and usability. You know, all the things that make good Mac apps good.

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Why not use the OS X QuickTime.app and produce a movie in a format other than GIF? –  user588 Nov 8 '11 at 4:56
    
There are a lot of websites that can do thos for you, just google the term animated gif converter. Most are free. –  Graeme Hutchison Nov 8 '11 at 12:04

8 Answers 8

As far as high-quality apps in the app store that can produce animated GIFs, there's always Photoshop Elements. It's not cheap, but it's the consumer version of the industry standard for photo manipulation.

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Does elements have a good workflow for taking a quicktime movie file and producing a GIF animation? I agree with the photo chops of this app, but I haven't used it with any movie files yet. –  bmike May 30 '13 at 20:56

You might install ImageMagick with brew install imagemagick and then use something like this:

convert -delay 4 *.png output.gif

-delay 4 sets the delay between frames to 0.04 s.

See http://www.imagemagick.org/Usage/anim_basics/ for more information.

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or sudo port install ImageMagick after installing macports –  Mark Apr 11 '13 at 12:25

You could try GraphicConverter X

I last used GraphicConverter to make animated GIF files probably 10 years ago. But it worked fine back then and had plenty of options.

Here's some instructions, although these may be for an older version and may need to be adjusted slightly for the latest version:

  1. Draw your animation cells in a graphics program.

  2. Copy the first animation cell and start GraphicConverter.

  3. From the Edit menu do "new picture with clipboard". This will create a graphic the exact size as the cell in the paste buffer. This will be your first frame.

  4. Copy another animation cell.

  5. From the Picture menu in GraphicConverter do "Show movie options". It will ask you if you want to convert your document to an animation GIF, click "Convert"

  6. From your movie options window click "Insert Frame" button. It will insert the cell you have in your paste buffer into the frame. Continue copying cells and inserting frames until your animation is complete. If you want to make it an endless loop then you can click that box in the movie options.

  7. Set the delay between frames in the top of the movie options box. Experiment with this, you can change this when ever you want. The larger the number the longer each frame is displayed.

  8. Save your work.

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I'd like to revive this question in the hopes of generating a more complete list of the available options which are either Mac apps or command-line tools (not websites).

These are the ones I am aware of.

(I've marked this answer as a community wiki in the hopes that others will add to it)

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FYI, GIFQuickMaker is now $.99, Pixen App Store is $9.99, but you can compile source to get it free from Repo. –  Brad Jul 15 at 3:03

The app GIFQuickMaker ($1.99) describes itself as:

Description
GIF, TIFF, BMP, PNG, JPEG and GIF image transmission combination and GIF animations can be created.

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Don't know if you've heard about this one yet: Look for GIFfun.app

I do something similar to what you want -- grab several screen shots and drag-n-drop them onto GIFfun.app and it makes them into an animated GIF. It works great. If it weren't free I'd'a paid money for it.

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Can you please add a link to the application's web site? –  patrix Apr 11 '13 at 11:49
    
GIFfun is the best and easiest. –  user50350 May 30 '13 at 20:43

You could do far worse than to buy GifBrewery.

It's a finely crafted tool that really makes professional work of animating gifs. Think of it as iMovie for GIFs. Polished, reliable and full of tools to control the process as opposed to just stacking 8 images together in one animation (take it or leave it style).

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Purchased just to realise that it allows me only to edit existing videos / existing GIFs... I actually made some work to create sequential images and now I'm back to drawing board :) –  Michal Stefanow Apr 8 at 17:11
    
Gif brewery buggy as of May 2014. –  timoxley May 3 at 15:43
    
GIF Brewery seems to only work with movies as the input source, not image sequences. –  invalidname May 27 at 15:39

Gimp can do it very easily. Here are clear instructions:

http://www.techpraveen.com/2011/01/how-to-make-animated-gif-picture-in-gimp.html

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Answers on Ask Different need to be more than just a link. It's okay to include a link, but please summarize or excerpt it in the answer. The idea is to make the answer stand alone. –  patrix Sep 17 '13 at 5:34

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