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AVCHD Format Discussion
Inexpensive High Definition H.264 encoding to DVD, Hard Disc or SD Card.


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Old October 7th, 2010, 03:00 PM   #1
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Cine form or higher quad

Hi All
I have a question. I have a Intel (R) Core(TM)2 CPU 6600 @ 2.40Hz 2.45 GHz. Installed memory 6Gig.
Windows 7 64 bit OS. Adobe premiere pro cs5.

Would it be better to bump up to quad core or use cineform to down convert AVCHD files for editing? I'm limited on my funds. AVCHD is a bear to edit I'm finding out. DV editing was not bad but now with AVCHD it's a different story. I've done searching here but still am unsure. I know there are a ton of solutions.
Any advise would be appreciated.
Thanks again
Harry
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Old October 7th, 2010, 06:32 PM   #2
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Cineform would be one good solution to your problem.
BTW, you are not "downconverting" to Cineform, you are "upconverting" from a very lossy, 4:2:0, 8 bit format to a very high quality, near lossless, 4:2:2, 10 (or 12) bit format.
Your system & CPU will edit Cineform very smoothly & easily.
Just be aware that CF is a high data rate .avi file (100 mbs, instead of 18-24 mbs), so you need to look at your storage situation and might want to consider having a RAID 0 drive for the video files.
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Old October 7th, 2010, 08:07 PM   #3
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give the Avid DNxHD codec a try, this is what i use as and intermediate codec and it works great, plus it's free. I've read it works just as good as the Cineform option.
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Old October 7th, 2010, 10:01 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Young View Post
Cineform would be one good solution to your problem.
BTW, you are not "downconverting" to Cineform, you are "upconverting" from a very lossy, 4:2:0, 8 bit format to a very high quality, near lossless, 4:2:2, 10 (or 12) bit format.
Your system & CPU will edit Cineform very smoothly & easily.
Just be aware that CF is a high data rate .avi file (100 mbs, instead of 18-24 mbs), so you need to look at your storage situation and might want to consider having a RAID 0 drive for the video files.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Iker Riera View Post
give the Avid DNxHD codec a try, this is what i use as and intermediate codec and it works great, plus it's free. I've read it works just as good as the Cineform option.

Robert and Iker:
Thank you both for your replies and Ideas. I will consider them both. It is very much appreciated.
Thanks Again
Harry

PS BTW I assume that Avid DNxHD codec is used with Quicktime software??????
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Old October 7th, 2010, 10:46 PM   #5
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here's another solution to consider:

you can render all your files into proxy files of a smaller size just for editing. This way you'll need way less Hard disk space than any other solution. When you're done editing, just point the proxy files to your original files (naming conventions are important) and render. It will save you both money and the cost of an expensive RAID.
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Old October 7th, 2010, 11:15 PM   #6
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OK, here's the other factor - while editing via intermediate codec, proxys, etc. may make that operation tolerable...

You probably need to consider transcoding and rendering times, as those will also be processor dependent - may not be that big a deal for small projects, but if you're doing larger ones, the reduction in render times may skew the economies in the direction of a faster machine.

One thing to keep in mind is that every part of a machine can affect the ability to "do" video - I picked up an HP laptop with "ok" specs, and because it was all new (including a 5400RPM HDD, which "shouldn't" have worked), it was able to do fairly well with AVCHD.

IOW, consider the upgrade cost in terms of a full system, not just one part... and yes, it does get expensive to build a nice state of the art i7 machine... not sure if a current AMD system would be more cost effective, but should be from the ones I've assembled that weren't for video editing...

Just some things to consider.
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Old October 8th, 2010, 01:20 AM   #7
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How does the VoltaicHD convertor compare to Cineform? Is it another case of "you pay your money..."?
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Old October 8th, 2010, 01:58 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Blackhurst View Post
OK, here's the other factor - while editing via intermediate codec, proxys, etc. may make that operation tolerable...
You probably need to consider transcoding and rendering times, as those will also be processor dependent - may not be that big a deal for small projects, but if you're doing larger ones, the reduction in render times may skew the economies in the direction of a faster machine.
Dave has a very good point.
You can get by using a D.I. with your current system and have a better editing experience, but there will still be a price to pay in performance.
The ugly truth is that it would be a makeshift solution.
This is the first time since the "HD Revolution" began that we have reasonably priced hardware, OS, and software that can actually do the entire HD editing workflow like it was DV footage.
If you are going to be doing this for the forseeable future, you should consider just biting the bullet and upgrading to Win7 64, Intel i7, 12-16GB RAM.
It will change everything :)
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Old October 8th, 2010, 06:52 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Lender View Post
Robert and Iker:
Thank you both for your replies and Ideas. I will consider them both. It is very much appreciated.
Thanks Again
Harry

PS BTW I assume that Avid DNxHD codec is used with Quicktime software??????

yeah the Avid codec produces .mov files.

I personally use Adobe Media Encoder to do a batch encode of my AVCHD files into Avid's DNxHD .mov files. After that i can edit them pretty smoothly in Vegas Pro 9.
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Old October 8th, 2010, 10:57 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sareesh Sudhakaran View Post
here's another solution to consider:

you can render all your files into proxy files of a smaller size just for editing. This way you'll need way less Hard disk space than any other solution. When you're done editing, just point the proxy files to your original files (naming conventions are important) and render. It will save you both money and the cost of an expensive RAID.
[quote= Iker Rieka
yeah the Avid codec produces .mov files.

I personally use Adobe Media Encoder to do a batch encode of my AVCHD files into Avid's DNxHD .mov files. After that i can edit them pretty smoothly in Vegas Pro 9.[/quote]


Thanks for all your suggestions. When I finish editing, what format do I render out too? This is a first for me. I've never worked with proxy files before. Sorry for the question.
Harry
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Old October 8th, 2010, 01:34 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Blackhurst View Post
OK, here's the other factor - while editing via intermediate codec, proxys, etc. may make that operation tolerable...

You probably need to consider transcoding and rendering times, as those will also be processor dependent - may not be that big a deal for small projects, but if you're doing larger ones, the reduction in render times may skew the economies in the direction of a faster machine.
It also depends on the type of NLE you use, I still have a older Q6600 machine with 4gb memory and use Canopus Edius and it's HQ avi codec. Sure you need to convert first but you could batchconvert at night which is much faster then realtime for hdv footage and realtime on dslr 1080p footage, but once converted I have a workflow as easy as SD. Cutting and colorcorrecting dslr footage, several layers with effects stacked without any problem and all in realtime. 10 clips or 1000, edius eats dslr footage like cake. That you hardly can call "tolerable" :)

Exporting edited footage back to hq avi files is also 3 to 4 times realtime and when I want to make a Blu-ray files I use a dedicated winfast card which also outputs in about realtime.

Intermediate codecs can be of great value on "older" pc's and if your budget is thight, with canopus edius you don't even have to invest extra as it's already there. You only need to consider into sufficient harddive space but that's quite cheap these days.
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Old October 8th, 2010, 06:44 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Barber View Post
How does the VoltaicHD convertor compare to Cineform? Is it another case of "you pay your money..."?
I've looked into VoltaicHD convertor and it seems to be user friendly and at a good price. $39. Right now I can't afford Canopus Edius at $199. Has anyone had or heard of VoltaicHD convertor? I appreciate all suggestions.
Thanks again
Harry
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Old October 9th, 2010, 10:47 AM   #13
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I've just downloaded the demo version of Voltaichd. It errored when I tried to convert the first clip and crashed completely on the second. Perhaps I'll save my pennies and get Cineform.
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Old October 9th, 2010, 12:35 PM   #14
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The VideoGuys.com site sells CineForm NEO SCENE for $100.

Videoguys.com - CineForm NeoScene for PC and Mac
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Old October 9th, 2010, 01:30 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Barber View Post
I've just downloaded the demo version of Voltaichd. It errored when I tried to convert the first clip and crashed completely on the second. Perhaps I'll save my pennies and get Cineform.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guy McLoughlin
The VideoGuys.com site sells CineForm NEO SCENE for $100.
Thanks Ray for the heads up on your problems with Voltaichd.
Also thanks Guy for the heads up on Videoguys CineForm NEO SCENE for $100. I'll look into that.
Harry
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