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Old October 7th, 2009, 03:34 AM   #1
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Neo Scene is choppy in CS4 with Magic Bullet Looks

I just started using Neo Scene with CS4 and noticed it had very smooth previews in 1080p. I'm using a 5D2 and this seemed like my best option until I applied some color grading with Magic Bullet Looks. The previews became very choppy as soon as I applied some effects and even after replacing the 1080p files with 320p proxies, the previews were almost just as slow. The only way to get smooth playback is to render the timeline, but that is a bit too tedious and defeats the purpose of using Neo Scene. I'm just wondering if I had done something wrong to get such choppy previews with minor effects.

I used to transcode my footage to mpeg2 and they were quite smooth in CS4 even with lots of effects applied, I didn't need to render anything. Any help would be appreciated.


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Old October 7th, 2009, 03:46 AM   #2
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In my experience, Magic Bullet looks, brilliant though it is, is scarcely minor colour correction. I'd be very pleased but very surprised if I could get real-time playback with a look applied on HD material. But maybe I'm unlucky, too...
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Old October 7th, 2009, 10:13 AM   #3
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While it is more pricey, try Neo HD with First Light you can apply looks without rendering. We haven't found any faster way to do than have the codec itself apply color correction before presenting the image to the NLE.
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Old October 7th, 2009, 02:17 PM   #4
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Thanks for the insight David, I wish I did more research about the differences before I purchased Neo Scene. I've read that native 5D2 h264 files with 320p proxies have been quite successful, but didn't understand why it was so slow with Neo Scene proxies? I normally work in 720p projects and the playback with mpeg2s were much smoother than the 320p proxies I'm trying to use.

The only way I can think of to make this work is to use proxies without the Neo Scene codec, but I'm afraid that when I relink my HD media back, the color won't be exactly what I expected due to the higher color profile in Neo Scene video files.

could someone correct me if I'm wrong?
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Old October 7th, 2009, 03:51 PM   #5
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Where are you creating 320p proxies? There is no reason these would be slow.
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Old October 7th, 2009, 04:14 PM   #6
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I used Adobe Media Encoder to resize the 1080p Cineform avis into 320p Microsoft AVI with CineForm HD codec. Is it bad to transcode CineForm into CineForm again? I have been deleting my native h264 files after converting them into CineForm avis with Neo Scene (not AMC). I probably should have kept my original files, but since CineForm is much superior, I thought it would be unnecessary.
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Old October 7th, 2009, 04:37 PM   #7
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That will work, just slower than Neo HD's HDLink scaling. Why 320p (??? x 320)? Maybe you are forcing CS4 to do weird scaling, and that is why it is slow. Make sure you sequence resolution is the same as your proxy resolution, otherwise you have saved nothing (Premiere will scale the source up before the filter, meaning your filter are still running 1080p.)
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Old October 7th, 2009, 05:05 PM   #8
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Im totally sorry about the 320p, I actually had 640 x 360, my math skills are horrible now..
I just did some tests and it seems that certain effects such as film grain and diffusion use up a lot of resources for previews and turning those off seemed to make even my 1080p previews super smooth again. I can live with this since film grain and diffusion can be applied to the whole video after it's cut. CineForm definitely wasn't the bottleneck in this case and I think it was either my system or MB Looks which was not working efficiently.

thank you for the help David
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Old October 8th, 2009, 02:08 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian Lewis View Post
In my experience, Magic Bullet looks, brilliant though it is, is scarcely minor colour correction. I'd be very pleased but very surprised if I could get real-time playback with a look applied on HD material. But maybe I'm unlucky, too...
Ian
My experience as well. MBL is pretty resource intensive.
If you are using certain nVidia cards, the graphic card will participate in the rendering and speed things up. ATI card will not help, last I looked anyway.
If you can get the look you want with Firstlight, that's the way to go. It's like free lunch. I hardly use any other CC tools anymore for routine editing.
P.S. David Newman- off topic, but a wierd Firstlight thing: if I turn the histogram on in FL, then the histogram will show up in all CS4 CF timeline previews, even tho none of the clips were ever imported to FL, and FL is not open. It then causes an Import Proc Server.exe crash & CS4 closes. Open FL, turn histogram off, and everything is back to normal. Is it just me??
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Old October 8th, 2009, 12:59 PM   #10
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Magic Bullet Looks supports a wide range of cards from both ATI or NVIDIA:-)

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Old October 8th, 2009, 01:13 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael Bergstrom View Post
Magic Bullet Looks supports a wide range of cards from both ATI or NVIDIA:-)
True, but if you have one of the ATI cards (or drivers or whatever the problem is) that isn't supported, you will experience BIG hit in performance:

Very mad at Magic Bullet! NVIDIA not ATi acceleration

Where might one find a list of these supported cards?

Edit: Actually I just checked and the Colorista documentation says that 'supported' ATI cards are '9600XT or better, and X-series beginning at X700'. But they go on to say that Nvidia cards are generally faster than ATI cards of the same level ... so it seems some 'supported' ATI cards may not provide much acceleration.

Last edited by Graham Hickling; October 8th, 2009 at 06:52 PM.
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Old October 8th, 2009, 06:32 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graham Hickling View Post
True, but if you have one of the ATI cards (or drivers or whatever the problem is) that isn't supported, you will experience BIG hit in performance:

Very mad at Magic Bullet! NVIDIA not ATi acceleration

Where might one find a list of these supported cards?
I tried to look into that a while back & could find no documentaion of MBL HW acceleration with ATI cards, only nVidea.
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Old October 8th, 2009, 08:07 PM   #13
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As an alternative to MBL, you might want to look at Video Copilot's Film Magic Pro...

VIDEO COPILOT | After Effects Tutorials & Post Production Tools
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