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Canon XH Series HDV Camcorders
Canon XH G1S / G1 (with SDI), Canon XH A1S / A1 (without SDI).


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Old October 15th, 2007, 01:23 PM   #1
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XH-A1 /FCP settings for editing 24f, 16:9, HD downconversion

Hi,
I'm preparing to use my XH-A1 for the first time, and am testing out the best workflow using a MacBook Pro and FCP 5.1.4 (I can also use Avid 5.7.3 on a Mac or PC if anyone thinks this is better -- so far all advice points to FCP).

I would like to shoot in HD 24f 16:9 and downconvert to SD for editing. However, every time I try to set up an FCP project & sequence with the right settings, I either get footage that is unrendered, in 4:3 and/or looks jumpy. There are so many variables, that my testing is getting confusing. I know there have been posts on all of these requests separately, but I'm still at a loss for the right combination of HD, 24f, 16:9 and SD downconversion.

It would be a massive help to know your workable set of audio/video settings for:

Sequence
Capture
Device Control (I assume Firewire NTSC)
Video Playback (I assume Apple Firewire NTSC (720x480))
(And any other project settings I'm forgetting)

Also, in the camera, I have set the HD Down-Convert to ON; do I need to change anything with the Comp. OUt (1080i/480i), AV->DV, or Playback STD?

Thanks in advance,
Jessica
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Old October 15th, 2007, 02:25 PM   #2
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Hi Jessica,
The easy set-up 1080p24 in FCP should work well for you and eliminate the issues you're seeing. You can turn of the HD down convert on the camera. You MBP should be plenty fast enough to edit in HDV and then output to SD via compressor.

-JL
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Old October 15th, 2007, 04:32 PM   #3
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That's what I'm doing, capturing and editing in with the HDV 1080P24 setting, editing in a 23.98 sequence. But I've done the downconvert too. You set up FCP just as you would for a normal SD capture, making sure you're in a 16:9 mode, and same for sequence settings. But I think when you do the downconvert it automatically does the pulldown, though I could be wrong about this. So you wouldn't want a 24p FCP setting...but again I'm not 100% sure about that. If your sequence setting and capture settings match, and you're in the correct modes, then there shouldn't be any rendering.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 11:26 AM   #4
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XH-A1 /FCP settings for editing 24f, 16:9, HD downconversion

Thanks, Josh and Bill,
My storage space is pretty limited at the moment, so I'd prefer to edit in SD until I have more drive space.

But I did try to capture a sample with the 1080p24 setting to test it. It only worked with the downconvert OFF (otherwise FCP would not recognize the camera signal - any thoughts on that?). Plus, when I played the clip, the image was kind of wavy and jittery. Do you know what is causing that?

Do either of you (or does anyone else) have SD settings that will recognize HD footage with the downconversion ON (for 16:9, 24p)?

Still confused,
Jessica
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Old October 16th, 2007, 12:07 PM   #5
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why don't you just bring it in as HD 24f and edit you piece in HD (doesn't require any more storage than DV) Then you can down convert in in FCP when you're done. The only downside is that you will have long render/conform times when you sent it back to DV tape or compress for DVD because of the GOP structure of HDV.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 01:48 PM   #6
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Jim is correct about the amount of storage HDV requires. So you're not going to experience an advantage in storage space.

As far as brining HDV in with Downconvert on, the A1 manual states it needs to be off for HDV capture.

As far as the jitters, is your hard drive near full (less than 10% of space left). If so, that could be the cause of the jitters you're seeing. Hard drives are pretty reasonable lately and you may need to bite the bullet and get one to solve your issues.

Consider your final output. If it's SD DVD: shoot in HDV, capture in HDV 1080p24 (or 1080i60 if that's what you shot in), make sure your sequence settings match your capture, edit away, use compressor to output to dvd (90 min. best quality) and then DVD SP to create the disc.

If you have different output needs let the forum know and the right recipe can be posted for you.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 11:51 PM   #7
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Jessica
I use a MBP and FCE. Easy setup for HDV as already suggested. edit in HD. Export as QT movie, not normally self contained, and simply burn using iDVD. Sounds too easy?
Surprised me too, great results though.
Trev
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Old October 17th, 2007, 09:42 AM   #8
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Thanks for your advice. I'm travelling in Brazil, hence my external hard drive issues (today I was only able to find ones with USB connectors). I will try again digitizing to an external drive and let you know if I still run into problems.

Thanks again,
Jessica
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