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Old August 23rd, 2010, 10:16 PM   #1
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Correct Sequence settings for CFHD RT playback in Premiere CS5?

There appears to be a difference between Premiere Pro 2.0 and Premiere CS5 in the way it handles Cineform files.

PPro 2.0 was successfully accelerated by CFHD codec + engine. If I chose correct sequence settings, playback was smooth as silk.

With Premiere CS5, every time I set up the sequence the same way, the video playback visibly drops frames (a lot!) - as if the sequence settings did not match the actual video file's. But they do.

If I let Premiere CS5 choose the settings automatically by dragging CFHD file on the seq icon, it makes a Desktop Playback, Interlaced sequence. Which is wrong - files are progressive. But then timeline does play back smoothly.

What am I missing?

Latest Neo4K here.
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Old August 24th, 2010, 02:38 AM   #2
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I need advice too.
With CS5, i have created a new sequence with a Cineform preset (1080i50, hdv).
Under the Cineform playback settings, if i select "disable open GL" playback it is not smooth, frames are dropped.
if i choose "Open GL 2D", playback is good but Cineform is hardware independant.
So it should work with open GL disabled, no ?

Neo4K latest
regards,
Cedric.
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Old August 24th, 2010, 03:18 AM   #3
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What I'm doing (and it works for me with 1080/25p) is choosing the relevant cineform preset, and then changing the playback engine to desktop (do this while setting up the new sequence in the first place). Then I select desktop output to full screen on my second monitor. This all works very well. I can't get the CF playback settings to work using a second monitor full-screen, either - with or without OpenGL, so I've stopped trying. (Nor, by the way, can I get CF files to play back properly in a Blackmagic preset. Has anyone out there had success with that?)

I also use the desktop settings as above in the general playback setting available through the preferences, to take care of the source monitor side.
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Old August 24th, 2010, 05:21 AM   #4
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Just did a couple of tests.

a) If I leave Cineform RT as playback setting, the timeline playback is always choppy (dropped frames) - whether or not I enable OpenGL, don't matter. (I do have Nvidia card that supports OpenGL, by the way, and I did notice enabling OpenGL helped a lot with playback smoothness of other, non-Cineform types of files.)

b) If I replace Cineform RT with Desktop as playback, all is well. Cineform plays great, no dropped frames.

In both cases, External Monitor is Disabled. I learned years ago not to rely on video overlay. Instead, I'm just placing Premiere's timeline monitor window on the second monitor. So playback is still within the software, but does take up almost an entire second monitor, exclusively. Works great for me.

Another observation. With a) case above, I cannot right-click my monitor playback window. With case b), I can. Don't know if this is relevant... Even with Full Resolution Playback, b) is still smooth without any visibly dropped frames.

So what's the conclusion? Cineform no longer accelerates Premiere CS5, but actually decelerates it?
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Old August 24th, 2010, 06:35 AM   #5
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"Even with Full Resolution Playback, b) is still smooth without any visibly dropped frames."

CORRECTION: actually, playback does drop frames at full rez in Desktop mode.

So maybe the real reason Cineform RT playback looks choppy is because is forces full rez playback.

Of course all tests were done with the same exact Cineform file.

My Cineform codec version is 6.4.1.473, Neo4K version 5.0.6.265
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Old August 24th, 2010, 09:29 AM   #6
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Quote:
(Nor, by the way, can I get CF files to play back properly in a Blackmagic preset. Has anyone out there had success with that?)
Yes, I've gotten it to work. This is a problem I've seen in the past with Blackmagic. Basically Blackmagic sees the CineForm AVI as a Blackmagic native AVI (so there is no yellow line above the clips) and tries to play it as such. I add an accelerated effect like RGB curves and the clip will get a yellow line and play realtime. By doing this I can get 9 layers of 720 24P to play realtime.
I believe this is problem with Blackmagic and not CineForm specifically, but I wish the two would work together to add CineForm as a native format with Blackmagic devices. I would love to be able to capture and render timelines in a CineForm format.
-Jeff
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Old August 24th, 2010, 01:01 PM   #7
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results of my tests:
1) with desktop mode, playback seems to be smooth without dropped frames but i have the red line on the timeline. So i think this mode is not suitable for cineform file.

2) with Cineform RT mode and Open GL disabled, playback is perfect on the source monitor but frames are dropped when i play the same clip on record monitor. can you test it ?
Source monitor playback is perfect even with the secondary monitor full screen. very strange.

3) with Cineform RT mode and Open GL 2D enabled, playback is perfect in source/record window and full screen on the secondary monitor when a use the quadro FX3800.
But i get less real time/mercury effects as some ressources are used by Cineform playback.

Regards.
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Old August 24th, 2010, 03:46 PM   #8
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I kinda disregarded that yellow/red line business on the assumption that everything will eventually have to be rendered on export.

Took a second look.

My Desktop sequence - the one that plays out CFHD clips fine in RT - has yellow line.

CFHD native sequence does not - but neither does it play out in RT.

My grandma is still alive, so I could not afford Quadro FX3800 ;)

My card is EVGA nVidia GeForce 9800GT at 1/6th the price.

So I had to improvise. Went back to the native CFHD sequence, and switched acceleration from 2D to 3D OpenGL.

And it worked! Now CFHD clips seem to play out just fine without any visible dropped frames. Moldy mozzarella! - that was easy. Thanks for the tip.

(BTW, either Vertical or Horizontal 3D acceleration works.)
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Old August 28th, 2010, 07:34 PM   #9
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...OK, that was with Neo4K 5.0.6

Also, though it did work, Premiere CS5 was crashing all the time when scrubbing over a newly imported CFHD clip. Hmm..

Now, I just upgraded to Neo4K 5.1.1 today.

The OpenGL trick is now gone - the clips stopped playing out smoothly no matter which setting I set up for the Sequence. So CFHD playback in Premiere drops frames now.

It really looks like CS5 + Cineform no longer play nice together.

MOreover: opened a large existing project, and noticed that NLE is trying to re-conform all 300 CFHD clips. Why - it is just an update of the existing codec, no?..
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Old August 28th, 2010, 11:04 PM   #10
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There is a chance we are missing a required DLL, and CS5 is falling back to using the VFW importer -- way slower. See the 5.1.1 thread post #6 on testing using dependency walker. Otherwise nothing has changed in the code base for playback.
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Old August 28th, 2010, 11:28 PM   #11
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I just reverted back to 5.0.6 which has a reasonable performance if I choose "desktop" editing mode.
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Old August 28th, 2010, 11:35 PM   #12
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If you have time please investigate with Dependency Walker test, as 5.1.1 is playing fine here, although it does play better with OpenGL enabled, something we need to investigate.
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