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Canon EOS Full Frame for HD
All about using the Canon 1D X, 6D, 5D Mk. IV / Mk. III / Mk. II D-SLR for 4K and HD video recording.


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Old January 28th, 2010, 10:48 AM   #1
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ZoomBrowser or Neo Scene?

Hi. I am a newb at this and need help. I downloaded a trial version of Neo Scene and converted a clip to avi (24p). I also did the same using ZoomBrowser but converted it to mov (h.264). I can't say I see any difference but my experience is very limited. Would you recommend Neo Scene over ZB? Or should I just wait for the 24p firmware fix to come out and not spending $100 on Neo Scene? Thanks
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Old January 28th, 2010, 11:37 AM   #2
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Have you tried each format on your editing program? I find that .mov files are not editor friendly (Vegas 9). Even with a powerful computer, they will not preview smoothly, especially as the project size grows. The AVI files work great. I convert my AVCHD (HMC150) and .MOV (7D) files to AVI for editing. I save the original files because they take up less space than the converted files.

I use Neo Scene which works well, especially when converting a folder full of files. I also found a free converter Squared 5 - MPEG Streamclip video converter for Mac and Windows which appears to do the same. I just installed it last night so I have limited experience, but it seems to work fine.

Good Luck,

Doug
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Old January 28th, 2010, 11:55 AM   #3
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The reason I downloaded Neo Scene is because I've read great reviews about it. I can tell you this much, converting to avi in ZB sucks. The quality is very poor. I do have Vegas 9 but I did not try editing it in there yet. Will try when I get home
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Old January 28th, 2010, 03:27 PM   #4
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I agree, NeoScene is very easy to convert files.
Throw 5 minutes of .MOV on the timeline in Vegas and you will see what I mean. At some point (not much past 5 mins) I totally lose the ability to preview and Vegas becomes ineffective.
The link I provided to the other converter enables you to convert to one of several formats.

Good Luck
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Old January 28th, 2010, 05:01 PM   #5
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The benefits of Neoscene involve lessening the load in you processing and playback routines, and its near lossless editing capabilities. This means you can render a clip to the Cineform codec, then add it to another bunch of clips in a new Vegas time line, and know the quality from that render will still hold up to the original. Using the native files, or other formats that are intended as capture formats is a drain on processing power and will result in more loss in successive renders.
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Old January 28th, 2010, 06:52 PM   #6
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Thanks for the explanation. I am a photographer but decided to explore the video capabilities of the camera. So everything related to video is new to me. So from what I understand I will still need Neoscene even when Canon comes out with 24p firmware fix?
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Old January 28th, 2010, 07:11 PM   #7
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There are a lot of different tactics used to edit the output from these camera. Some are editing the native stuff, others converting to various codecs. Cineform has been modified to handle quirks in the 5D footage, normalizing the footage to achieve maximum editing benefits. It correct actual frame rate from 30 frames to 29.97 frames per second, and readjust where blacks and white fall, extending latitude- due to something peculiar Canon had done in the codec.

I am not saying you have to use it, I just think it is the best thing going to get maximum results out of the camera. The other nice thing is the Cineform is continuously updating NeoScene, and when the firmware for the 5D finally comes out, I am sure if they don't work with that footage right away, they will be on top of it quickly.
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Old January 28th, 2010, 10:56 PM   #8
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Thanks again for the explanation. By the way what I've noticed is that after conversion some darker areas of the clip looked lighter. And that was pleasing because those areas were really dark and some details were lost. Is Neoscene responsible for that too?
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Old January 28th, 2010, 11:18 PM   #9
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Yes. 5D2 footage has these flaws, or, um, "characteristics":

* It shoots 0-255. Video is generally 16-235. 0-255 is good because you get more levels, but it needs to be accounted for.

* The header says 1088 lines, rather than 1080.

* It's 30p, rather than 29.97p

* If you conform to 29.97p, the audio will go out of sync.

* The native files have to be decoded by *something*. That something is usually Quicktime which messes up the gamma. (To check, do a full resolution capture and look at the histogram. If there are gaps and bumps, that means the gamma got screwed up in 8-bit world, which is really bad for color correction.)

* It's hard to decode by editing systems

So, aside from having the wrong speed, resolution, bit range, and gamma, and being hard to edit with out-of sync audio, it's perfect. ;)

In Vegas, you can fix all of these things manually. That includes opening every clip in Quicktime and exporting to M4V format. The rewrap is fast, but it's click-intensive for the user.

Or you can run the content through NeoScene. It fixes every single problem listed above. Point it at a folder, click "Start", enjoy a cup of coffee, and edit away.

Back in December 2008 there were a lot of man-hours spent with people trying to figure out how to edit this stuff. When NeoScene became available for the 5D2, there was a collective sigh of relief!
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Old January 29th, 2010, 10:38 AM   #10
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Now that was really convincing :) Thanks everybody for your help
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Old January 29th, 2010, 11:08 AM   #11
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Jon:

Great technical explanation of all the benefits... I'm gonna cut and paste your explanation for this question in the future-- with attributes to you of course !
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Old January 29th, 2010, 01:44 PM   #12
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Thanks Ilya and Chris.

Over the past year, I had kinda forgotten about all the detailed problems with the raw files. As I was writing, I had a series of "oh yeahs". By the time I got them all together, I remembered why NeoScene was one of the easiest $100 I ever spent. It's not just about editing speed.
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Old January 30th, 2010, 03:49 PM   #13
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Just to point out that Neoscene as an editing CODEC is only necessary on Windows PCs. If you are using a Mac then importing the files into iMovie (which ships for free on every Mac) will convert to AIC. If you edit in Final Cut Pro then convert to ProRes (supplied with FCP) using MPEG Streamclip before editing.
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Old January 30th, 2010, 04:49 PM   #14
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I had a chance to play a bit with Neo scene today and noticed that after converting to 24p the quality dropped down considerably. When the camera was steady then it was ok but when panning I saw unpleasant distortions. Not sure what they are called. I did not see the same issue when playing raw files in ZoomBrowser. It was not as bad as when I did not convert to 24p (Maintain source fram format option) but still was visible. What is that and is there a way to minimize it?
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Old January 31st, 2010, 03:28 PM   #15
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Ilya:

Cineform is indicating that you shouldn't use Cineform Neoscene to convert 30p footage to 24p. It is an option, but it it can have some nasty results.

In Vegas, I can slow down playback to 24 fps, and you get clean 24p, but motions is also slowed down. Other wise, when a conversion occurs, the likely scenario is that to go to 24p by conversion, the coverting process has to drop 1 out of every 5 frames. In fast motion you will get obvious issues. In static scenes could be fine.

There are some programs that rebuild frames, using extrapolation, but even those, I suspect will have errors. Again, shooting native 24p is the true answer, and that is coming soon from Canon, we hope.
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