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Old May 13th, 2010, 03:44 PM   #1
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Problem with jerky playback

Hello all.

I am new in AVCHD world (three months ago I bought a EU model of Sony xdr - xr500 ve) and basic-level user in Premiere pro (CS4 version). Though my pc is not super it fulfils the requirement of the software and could handle the footage quite well. So I think that my problem has to do more with the settings rather than with the hardware.

PROBLEM

I am downloading the footage from my camera (in .m2ts format - recorded at its full resolution AVC HD 16M FH). I start an AVCHD project (capture format: HDV, Available preset:AVCHD 1080p25 or 1080i30 (60i)) and import the footage. The problem is that at the end of the days when I try to export my footage the playback result in some cases is distorted (i.e. when exporting to MPEG-2 the resolution is low with horizontal lines). But no matter which format and which resolution settings I choose the result is always jerky and not smooth as in the original footage (i.e. as I see in my camera's screen). I have tried to solve this problem by trying several different export settings but unfortunately without any positive result. I also thought that the problem might be in my computer which may not have the processing power to playback my footage but even if I try to export at full resolution (h.264 ".mp4" format and then burn a DVD in Adobe Encore, Corel or Nero for standard dvd players) create a dvd and reproduce it in my home's player the result is still Jerky.

I am really at a dead-end since without being able to export and see my work in a nice way I cannot work at all. Since I am not an advanced user in Premiere pro I would really appreciate if somebody could provide me with a clear direction how to import and export my work taking a nice and smooth result. Below I uploaded my original footage (.m2ts) in case it could be of any help (the file is 52 MB so I attach the link which will remain for few days).

https://download.yousendit.com/bFFPTG00YXlxRTFjR0E9PQ

Thank you all in advance. I really appreciate your help.
Simon
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Old May 14th, 2010, 12:00 AM   #2
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Hi Simon,
I just uploaded your m2ts file and played it through my WD HD TV Media Player to a 37in TV and it was perfect.
If I make a video for playing on a computer monitor I use progressive for upload to Vimeo or you-tube, but for a TV then I stick with upper field first which is what your video is.

Now for the settings I would use, they are AVCHD 1080i25(50i) it says (For editing AVCHD Formats recorded in 1920x1080 square pixels (non-anamorphic).
16:9 interlaced HD video at 25 frames per second.
48kHz audio.)
Now this is upper field first so when you make an mpeg2 file for authoring to DVD then you have to make sure you make it upper field first as well, it might try to default to lower field first this can give you interlace jitter and it looks awful.

There is a freeware player called "zoom player" and if you find the de-interlace setting then you might find the play back from interlaced video is much improved on a computer monitor.

Bryan

Last edited by Bryan Sellars; May 14th, 2010 at 12:42 AM.
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Old May 14th, 2010, 07:45 AM   #3
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Hello Bryan and thanks for your quick reply.

I have tried your solution but my result is still far away from the desired (even from the acceptable). Since everything works fine in your computer it is probably me who is doing sth terribly wrong. So please take some time and read below. I have described in every detail all steps I follow as well as all export settings.

Procedure followed

First I start a new project ( capture format: HDV, AVCHD 1080i25 (50i) )
Then I upload the footage in its original format (.m2ts) and File-> Export-> Media

The export setting are:

Format: MPEG2
Preset: HDTV 1080i 25 High Quality
Codec: MainConcept MPEG Video (not able to change this option)
Quality: 4 (I do it manual 5 sometimes)
TV standard: PAL
Frame Rate [fps]: 25
Field Order: Upper
Pixel Aspect Ratio: Widescreen 16:9 (1,000)
Profile: Main
Level: High
Bitrate Encoding: VBR, 1 Pass (I also tried 2 Pass)
Minimum Bitrate (Mbps): 4
Target Bitrate: 15
Maximum Bitrate: 18,5
M Frames: 3
N Frames: 12
Closed GOP every: 0
Automatic GOP placement is checked
Macroblock Quantization: 10
VBV Buffer size (2kbytes): 112
Noise: Sensitivity
Write SDE: No
Force VBV Delay: 0xffff (not able to change this option)
Intra DC Precision: 9 Bits
Write Sequence End Code: Yes
Embed SVCD user Blocks: No
Ignore frame interval: 0
Reaction Parameter: 0
Initial Average Activity: 0

Keeping all the above settings I produced two versions, one video with VBR 1 Pass and one with VBR, 2 Pass. However what I still see is a non-smooth video. I also send you the link to see how my video looks like. In both videos you will be able to see the jerky parts. I also tried to produce a quick time video but result is still jerky.

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Actually whatever I try to do (even a low quality video for standard youtube upload) the picture doesnít flow normally creating an unpleasant result. Please let me know if you have any idea of how I could solve this problem and if itís possible please send me the video that you exported to see how your version looks like. This is because I've started to wonder if it is my computer which cannot reproduce the videos smoothly. But again if this was the case why I should still get a jerky playback in a very low quality video?

Thanks a lot!
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Old May 14th, 2010, 05:09 PM   #4
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Hello Simon,

I downloaded your file and checked out the video. apart from the mov file they all played fine, I always except that viewing an interlaced video on a monitor is not going to look as good as progressive, so I played them all back through the TV and all played perfectly apart from the mov which it refused to play, and the progressive was encoded at 1440x1080 so you may have lost a bit of resolution in the down conversion.

Next I did a quick edit of your original video and turned it into an mpeg2 using the MPEG 2 output in CS4 and selected the preset PAL DV High Quality, and changed the lower field to upper field and the aspect ratio from 4:3 to Widescreen 16:9, and then used TMPGEnc DVD Author to produce the DVD as I know this doesn't re-encode the mpeg2 file as I'm not sure if the ones you have been using do, any way it played fine on the DVD player no problems at all.

Now when you make your HD video I see you have selected MPEG2 instead of H264 Blue-ray this uses the MainConcept H.264 Video codec then you can change the 1440x1080 to 1920x1080 and also alter the bit rate to something like 16Mbps and change the PCM sound to Dolby Digital I find 192 kbps fine and save your own preset.

Do you have a codec pack on your computer, it could be some of your playback problems are more a codec issue than the files themselves I have CCCP on this machine and use the ffdshow with deinterlace selected but do be careful if you change codec packs I always use Ghost to take a copy of my computer C drive before I mess around,

Bryan

PS. Just thought of something else I see you mention Corel if you have Pro X3 it does a reasonably good encode for youtube and vimeo in HD 720P at 5000kbps www.vimeo.com/3904297
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Old May 16th, 2010, 03:32 PM   #5
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Hello Bryan,

I have tried several different export settings and applied most of your proposals and I think that now the result is much better. Thanks a lot for your help.

Simon
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Old May 22nd, 2010, 03:37 PM   #6
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Problem with jerky/choppy playback

Hello again,

I am afraid I have to open this topic again since I am desperately trying to find some kind of help that might be able to help me continue with my project. I have tried any possible export settings combinations (or create a dvd), i have installed several different codecs and the problem remains the same "Playback is jerky/choppy". Actually the source .m2ts file plays perfectly in my camera's monitor but if I try to convert it to any other file format the result is choppy especially in parts when camera moves quickly. In first place I thought the problem is on premiere pro export settings but I really experimented a lot both with interpreting footage settings (no red or yellow lines above clips in timeline) and export settings. I also downloaded a free video converter to take an mpg or mp4 from m2ts but always the result is jerky/choppy (in the converted file). Right now I am completely stuck and unable to do sth to get a smooth playback from source m2ts file. I am also providing below the link to download the source and the exported mp4 file. As you will see in the mp4 file the playback is jerky, not too much but it is not smooth either. The result is always like this even if I try to make a very low resolution video (i.e. for youtube). So the problem is that from m2ts I cannot get any other file type that will play smothly!!! Hardware...software... I am really confused!!!!

http://www.transfer.ro/storage/Video...-9748a848c.rar

If somebody could manage to produce a perfectly smooth video please send it to me to see the result with my eyes since us I told you in the mp4 result the footage is not extremely jerky but if you look closer it is. All solutions/proposals would be valuable

Thanks a lot guys!
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Old May 22nd, 2010, 06:51 PM   #7
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Kind of a side question, but why aren't your final renders back into the AVCHD format? What's your target output device?

My own setup is suitable for all-AVCHD editing and playback and I'm wondering what you're targeting that isn't so new advice might be offered.

For reference, I have:

1. A Sony CX500V

2. If I edit the footage, I do simple trims in Picture Motion Browser and more complex editing in Corel's VideoStudio X3 Pro. I used to do a lot of downconverting to 720p for uploads to YouTube. But as of about two months ago, you can upload full-length (10 minute) 1080i AVCHD direct to YouTube and it will do all the conversions for you. So I use the Corel software only for extensive editing throughout a clip or combining of clips.

3. I sometimes play back direct from the camcorder to an HDTV via HDMI, but that's only if I'm in a hurry to see the footage.

4. Otherwise, I move the footage from camcorder to PC using Picture Motion Browser. After editing (if any), I copy the footage to an external USB hard drive and upload some of the better clips to YouTube.

5. Smooth playback devices include:
a. The PC - a 2 1/2 year old quad core with 6 GB of RAM and an nVidia 8800GTX.
b. A Sony Playstation 3 - USB drive to PS3 to HDTV via HDMI.
c. A Western Digital media player (much cheaper than the PS3) - USB drive to WD MP to HDTV via HDMI.

I don't produce DVDs for other people so that reduces the need to produce footage in MPEG-2 or MPEG-4 formats.

I don't know if your needs and hardware allow you to skip downconverting the video, but if so, then staying in AVCHD all the way is an excellent way to go. I've had no problems with playback doing so. In the Corel software, there's not even any real format setup - I just tell it to use the same format as the first clip in the project.
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Old May 22nd, 2010, 07:26 PM   #8
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Hi Simon,

I just did a conversion of your original file and converted it to 720x576 mp4 but had to change the default setting from 4x3 to 16x9 and lower field to upper field and then played it back through my WD TV HD Media Player and it was fine but when played back through the computer it was slightly jerky but think it might be because my refresh rate is 75Hz so does not match the 50i that the mp4 is. I see you did yours as a progressive scan so you will see a slight film effect that might be giving you the impression of jitter but progressive is usually proffered for viewing on a computer monitor.

I see Tom uses Corel Video Studio Pro X3 which I find a much better encoder than Premiere CS4 and much faster, If you download a trail copy you might find it gives you better results, I select the custom settings and set it up to:-
MPEG Transport-Stream Files (*.m2t
24 bits, 1920 x 1080, 25 fps
Upper Field First
(HDMV-PAL), 16:9
H.264 Video
Video data rate: Variable (Max. 20000 kbps)

There are some good instuctional videos on you-tube if you decide to give it a try.

Bryan
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Old May 23rd, 2010, 07:39 AM   #9
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Tom and Brian first of all I would like to thank you for your time and say that I really appreciate your help. I do understand that AVCHD format is a high quality video format and in order to take out the most of it every single detail may play important role. However my problem is quite elementary. Even if I try to convert my m2ts file into a simple mpg for youtube or computer reproduction I get a jerky result. I am not in the stage that I will try to play around with different settings in order to take the best resolution. I am unable to get a smooth motion no matter what I do. The playback looks strange and it doesn't matter how much I will compress or what format I will choose. I am not complaining at all for the quality of the picture the only problem is the motion which tends to be worst in cases that the camera moves faster. For example when I try to export to encore and burn a dvd all conversions are taking place automatically and the playback in my dvd player should be absolutely perfect, but unfortunately it looks jerky again. If you have achieved to produce a video that plays 100% smoothly could you please send it to me just to see the result with my own eyes?

I am now downloading corel's editor to see if it will work better but Premiere is always offering more in terms of video editing. I will come back shortly.

Thanks a lot
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Old May 23rd, 2010, 11:32 AM   #10
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YouTube will now take your 1080/60i video from your XR500 and upload it directly without you needing to touch it first. You may want to trim out excess unimportant footage from either end using PMB, of course. And if you do that, YouTube will still upload that edited clip just fine.

If you have the Corel trial and do some more extensive editing, set the project's format to "MPEG4-HD", if I remember correctly. YouTube uploads this OK. Or you can choose to use the format of the first clip which will be the AVCHD output.

My channel on YouTube is "ThomasAlexHD". Clips uploaded since about the beginning of March will have been done one of the two above ways (directly from the Sony M2TS file or after editing in Corel). These will all have 1080p choices. Clips uploaded prior to that will top out at 720p and were all downconverted using Corel XP3 or XP2. I think that when YouTube added the full 1080i upload this spring, they may have recompressed existing clips because my 720p cliips now seem to have easily visible jaggies (de-interlacing artifacts) where only a few had those before. So where you see those, that's not a very good indication of what the camcorder captured at 1080i. For that reason, I never downconvert to 720p anymore. I upload 1080/60i all the time.
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Old May 23rd, 2010, 12:40 PM   #11
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Thanks Tom but the case is not really how to upload a video on youtube. The only reason I make this reference to youtube is to explain that even in low quality videos the result remains jerky. By the way I have seen your videos which are very nice. However in some of them I see this choppy effect especially in this YouTube - ThomasAlexHD's Channel

Also in Bryan's video
there are some jerky parts (look for example after sec 39 where it is more apparent)

This is what I am trying to bypass. When we see a film (a dvd movie for example) you never see problems in motion no matter how fast the camera moves. So I come back again in my question is there any way or processing technique that can ensure a perfectly smooth result?
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Old May 23rd, 2010, 04:51 PM   #12
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I just watched the original of my train video to make sure that what you're commenting on is not jerkiness in the video but jerkiness in my hands. That's definitely the case. This was shot handheld. At the beginning of the clip, I'm at full zoom and filming something over 1/3 of a mile away. I also didn't have time to set up my body because the train rolls around that corner with no warning.

At the end, I'm filming the train headed away from me and that bridge you see is almost a full half-mile away from me. If the stabilization on this camcorder weren't so excellent, almost the whole clip would have been totally unusable. This is why people use tripods. I guess I should be pleased that people can mistake this as problems with the video instead of with my steadiness.

I think the same thing is going on with the video taken from a boat, handheld, while it's moving. We're used to seeing film taken with a steadicam or track-mounted camera, and it absolutely looks much more stable and less jerky than what you're seeing. It's my belief that the jerkiness you're perceiving is real but is inherent in the filming technique and level of equipment being used. That said, downconverting it to lower formats may well make it look even more jerky, but it's inherent in the clip, not in the conversion.

If you find a really smooth tripod-steady cliip, convert it, and it's jerky, then you've got the difference you want. But a lot of film posted on YouTube and elsewhere (certainly including some of my handheld work) will have jerkiness in it as the camera itself moves in random directions.

I'm not totally sure this is everything you're seeing, but these two clips by definition are going to have jerkiness issues. The boat is bobbing up and down and sideways randomly - so must the camcorder. And filming handheld at full zoom is notorious as a way to produce junky clips.

Back to an earlier comment of mine - I'm really horrified looking at that train clip in 720p. The jaggies are just terrible, and they were not there like that after my original upload. This is making me think I may have to reupload a ton of stuff in its original 1080i format.
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Old May 23rd, 2010, 04:54 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Tsiolas View Post

This is what I am trying to bypass. When we see a film (a dvd movie for example) you never see problems in motion no matter how fast the camera moves. So I come back again in my question is there any way or processing technique that can ensure a perfectly smooth result?
I can perceive motion blur in a lot of TV shows and movies, so I'm a little curious about your thought here. I assume the filmmakers are pretty good at drawing your attention where they want it, and maybe in keeping that in focus so you ignore the motion blur. But when DVDs first came out, I didn't like them because the motion looked very blurred or choppy to me. The whole 24 frames per second format is worse at representing motion than TV at 30 fps or our camcorders.
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Old May 23rd, 2010, 07:45 PM   #14
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Hi Simon and Tom, It's as Tom says on the boat the problems you see are on the original video it's just that AVCHD H264 has a problem with movement it's not like DV video that was made up of I frames (intraframe's), with H264 there might only be one I frame every 30 frames all the rest are made up of P frames or B frames so it has problems with movement it shows up as a loss of resolution but still shouldn't be jerky, when I checked on some of mine it's the fault of the try-pod and the operator...me....that causes the jerkiness, one I did of Picton is very noticeable on some pans of the main street and shop all from a sticking try-pod although the rest is fine,

My you-tube name is bandjsellars and the last video I put on is done in Corel Video Studio Pro X3 at 720P 25fps 5000kbps (Picton and Momorangi Bay) I think in future I will go into custom setting and up the bit-rate to 8000kbps even though I see you-tube re-encoded it to half the bit-rate, I use WebVideoCap.exe to check on how it has been re-encoded.

The reason I don't use full res video to download is the time it takes on New Zealands slow broadband and a data cap of 15GB. otherwise I would do like Tom says and not have the hassle of conversion.

I had a look at Toms page on you-tube and think yours have the edge on ours in that you are using 30fps it looks smoother than I see on my stuff at 25fps, I really only like the look of interlaced video as seen on a TV and never expect too much off Vimeo or You-tube because it's turned into progressive and is to much like the old film with it's inherent jitter on pans.

By the way Tom I have a friend that I must give you you-tube name to, he is mad keen on trains.

this gives a good explanation of how mpeg works:-
http://www.pinnaclesys.com/files/Mai...whitepaper.pdf

Bryan
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Old May 24th, 2010, 09:38 AM   #15
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Bryan has identified something major I forgot to say: YouTube uploads can be slow. This became a non-issue for me about the time I was told that 1080i uploads now worked. I switched to Verizon FIOS from Verizon DSL and the uploads are about 20 times faster. I used to have to do uploads only at night when everyone else was asleep since an upload would bring my DSL to its knees. Now I can upload and other Internet users in the house don't even notice. So the broadband connection speed is a major factor.

It does seem like the NTSC 30fps should be a little smoother than the PAL 25fps.

The latest 1080i to 1080p conversions YouTube is doing look pretty good. But good HDTVs seem to have really effective de-interlacing in them so any of this originally-interlaced video definitely looks better on them than on a PC.

Re trains on YouTube: there is some tremendous stuff available, Bryan, as your friend knows. One of the best and one I favorited is actually a compilation of New Zealand footage - very cool. Mine is completely amateur and I'm not really a railfan per se. But I do have the advantage of the HD camcorder and I am willing to trim out the first minute where someone is waiting for the train and it's not in view! Some YouTube train clips should be 1/3 of their existing length, but I guess they're posted by people who don't edit at all, even to trim off both ends where nothing is happening.
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