Chicken Crop

I have a Sony digital camera which has a Multi-Burst option. Setting to this option will result in the camera capturing multiple pictures in succession. The playback on the camera is an animation of the photos but the resultant photo is actually a matrix of photo’s and not too useful on the computer.

ChickenCrop will take such an image and crop sub-images from it. The cropped images can then easily be used however one wants, send individually or use in some other tool to make an animated GIF. A popular method is to use Adobe ImageReady to open a directory to easily make an animate GIF.

Before to Animated GIF

ChickenCrop is written in Java. The catch is it was written with 1.6 while the more popular version and more widely used at the time of creation is 1.5. This unfortunately requires one to install Java JRE 1.6.  (Update May 2011: Try this updated link to pick the JRE for your system).


Download 1.0 now!

Step by Step Instructions

Here are some step by step instructions with pictures to guide you through the experience of ChickenCrop.

Step 1: Open ChickenCrop.jar.

Step 1

Step 2: Select the input file. In this case the original multiburst photo is selected.


Step 2

Step 3: Select the output file where you want the cropped images to be placed. You can optionally provide a tag you want to add to the cropped filenames.

Step 3

Step 4: Press the ‘crop!’ button.

Step 4

This will result in cropped images.


With some additional steps you can use other tools to easily make an animated image!

HINT:  The more I look the more utilities I find to help make animated GIFS from multiburst photos.  So far my application of choice is Adobe ImageReady.  You can import images from a directory and it will automatically layer them for an easy start to an animated GIF.

Animated GIF

31 thoughts on “Chicken Crop”

  1. Hi there,

    I came upon your site as I’m interested in converting my multiburst photos into separate photos.

    I am a bit of a newby when it comes to computer programs and such. I tried installing your program, but with not much luck.

    Do I need to install the java? I tried looking on the link but I’m a bit confused.

    Would you be able to help me?

    thanks so much

  2. Hello Steph —

    Yes, you’ll need to install Java. Just following the link may be a bit confusing so I will try to lead you in the right direction.

    2 bits of detail:
    JRE and 1.6

    The ‘R’ in JRE is for ‘runtime’ which you need since you only want to run the Java application. 1.6 is the version used to write ChickenCrop.

    Here is an updated link (I’ll update the post) that should be more straight forward:

  3. Thanks!

    I got that part – the Java – thanks to your help. Now I’m still stuck 🙂
    On my desktop I have the Java icon and Sun Download manager.

    I also have the files from your site under a folder labled Chickencrop.
    They look similar to this:

    Main$1.class Main$3.class etc.

    In addition there is a Meta-Inf folder.

    Sorry about all of the questions 🙁

    If you could possibly lead me where to go to next I’d apprecaite it.

    Thanks again! 🙂

  4. Steph —
    I think you went a bit too far with the extracting. The contains one file called ‘chickencrop.jar’. Executing this file (double-clicking, etc.) will start the application.

    I played around a bit with the file and it is possible to ‘extract’ the files you specified from the jar. But that is going too far.

    Do you have the chickenbit.jar file and try clicking or double-clicking (depends on OS and such) it?


  5. Thanks so much Steven!

    It worked like a charm.

    Just one more question.
    Is there any way to make the image clearer (less pixilated). If I were to have it printed out at a photo shop would it be a small clear image or a larger (4×6) fuzzier image?

    Oh, I guess that was more than one question 🙂

    Thanks again!

  6. Sorry, there is no simple way to improve the resolution of the digital photo.

    The cropped images are not well suited for printing at increased sizes. I think the intention of the multi-burst is to share digitally so there was no concern about image quality.

  7. Nice! Very nice! Thanks for making this.

    Have you thought about taking it to the next step and having it output an animated GIF? It’s easy enough to make them myself, but it would be nifty right out of Chicken Crop.

  8. Matt,

    Thank you for your comment.

    Yes, I have thought about adding that functionality. If you can point me in the right direction in terms of libraries that support gif89a that would be appreciated. This was my first project in Java and any pointers to helpful libraries/tools would help in getting development on this new feature added.

  9. hi there! i searched the net and found the solution in your application, i used it and my problem was solved! thank you very much for openly posting your program. though my pictures are of poor resolution id rather have it taht way than having 16 frames hehe.. thanks agen and a nice day to u!

  10. Nice Program!!

    Is there a way to use the program from the windows command line?

    Or better yet, can you modify the program to split a bunch of photos if they are placed in a directory ?

    Actually the best thing would be the ability to select multiple photos at once. Perhaps this is an actually easy modification to the program ?

    Any of these features would be very cool in order for your new enthusiastic users to accomplish batch processing of files.

    Thank you for your patience,

  11. Jed – Good feedback. I see the value of a batch functionality. I will look into adding it the next time I dig into the code.

  12. That would cool. Thanks for considering this capability. Allow me to add – my guess for a reasonable location for output (of each split) may be to create a folder to hold the 16 separate pics and naming this folder with the original multiburst (4X4) pic’s filename (without the .jpg extension of course).

    This way, the output pics would be automatically logically organized.

    This is particularly good for a user subsequently opening each folder, perhaps selecting the most desirable pictures and copying them, one by one, to some other arbitrary folder for, say, uploading somewhere for online viewing.

    I know the above scenario may sound contrived but I believe it to illustrate the routine of picture selecting and uploading as common goals. Thanks again.

  13. Hey, thanks so much for posting Chicken Crop. I recently took my brand new Cybershot on a trip to San Francisco (alas…sans user’s guide…) and ended up with a ton of great pictures…all of them unintentionally shot in multi-burst format. Just when I was giving up hope that my assumed stills were going to remain floaty and semi-animated, I ran across your page. Everything is working great, so thanks again. Lindsay

  14. Hey Steve – Followed direction and when I clicked on Crop, I get the following error -java.lang.IllegalStateException: Output has not been set!

    Where did I go wrong?

  15. Looks like you did not select the output directory for the cropped files. You have to click on the ‘choose directory…’ button and select a valid directory before cropping!

  16. Got pass my problem. Thanks for the tool and the help. I used Animator to make the animated gif but it more like a moviw. Any advice on a real brust effect tool.

  17. David,
    I did not have a mac available at the time of writing ChickenCrop.

    Now I do, but I have not tried running ChickenCrop on it. When I do I will provide a more helpful comment.

    Thank you for the feedback.

  18. Hi…

    You have no idea how much I love you!!!!! do you have any idea of how much time I have already spent looking for this application!!! I knew this exist, but I didn’t know it was here!! I’ve been almost 3 months looking for this application…

    This application rulezzzz!!!!!!

    thank you so much!!!!

  19. Hi there,

    Following on from the comment above, i just wanted to ask if you ever discovered if the application will work on a Mac (Powerbook G4 with OSX Tiger).

    I’ve got some multiburst ski shots i want to turn into an animation

    Great application by the way



  20. Phil,
    Unfortunately I have no solution for the G4 based Macs, and the only solution for the Intel based Macs is to run a Windows Operating System via Bootcamp, VMWare Fusion, or Parallels.

  21. Cheers for writting this!

    Been using a photoshop action someone wrote to split these files up, but its much simpler and quicker to run your program.

  22. hi guys!

    you have the only aplication on the web that splits multiburst pictures automatically. unfortunatelly it is impossible for me to install it, i get the jar file double click on it and the a series of files follow, none of the is a exe file !! what an I doing wrong? please can you help me?
    thnak you in advance

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *