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Old July 19th, 2007, 02:24 PM   #1
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Major question for Cineform

Davids (both CEO and CTO), the biggest question we have for Cineform right now is:

Why doesn't Prospect seem to be able to render ANY mixed media if that layer has material with an alpha layer in CS3? That is, when we try to render any CF'ed 1920x1080 material with any other 1920x1080 material containing an alpha layer, it crashes or gives an error message after aborting the edit.

That would be fatal for us and would preclude our using CF for editing or inputing, as we regularly use material with alpha layers. Up to now, we can edit everything normally in "regular HDV mode" in CS3, mixing any 1920x1080 input on the same timeline with the HDV, with or without alpha layers. They seem to render normally in every other codec we've tried that handles that size output...except CF. That includes rendering material out using the MainConcepts codec. Sloooooo good, but it does it!

Come on CF, we like your product and want to keep using it, but we're getting desperate and close to jumping ship if we can't find a solution. Give us some hope!
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Old July 19th, 2007, 02:59 PM   #2
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What sort of material are you mixing with that has an alpha? TGA files, uncompressed AVIs?-- so we can match your tests. We are in the process of adding Alpha channel compression support to Neo 2K and Prospect 2K, so this will clearly be a issue if CS3 has a bug. Note: CS3 does the mix, not CineForm -- we just encode the results, so I hopely this is something we can address. Try trying off the 32-bit float in the playback settings control panel.
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Old July 19th, 2007, 03:22 PM   #3
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Ever since we discovered that CF doesn't do alpha layers, we have tried outputting our Digital Juice HD material (Swipes, Revealers, JumpBacks, etc.) to regular uncompressed 1920x1080 AVI's and try to render these with our CF'ed material in CS3 PP. It doesn't seem to matter if it comes as MOV's or AVI's, just that it has an alpha layer...then crasho! No render.

This same material works normally with anything else we've tried in HDV sessions, even when bringing in as 1920x1080.

Also, what hope does this bring to us? We are using regular Prospect HD, not the 2K version...

Thanks for responding so quickly...we have 3 guys sitting on their butts because of this!
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Old July 19th, 2007, 04:19 PM   #4
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David, the 32bit-float turnoff did the trick! Even the CF'ed material we had done in Digital Juice (non alpha, obviously...) worked now when we used a luma key with it!

That made us dance around the editing suite.......(sorry, we didn't get it on tape)
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Old July 19th, 2007, 04:57 PM   #5
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I spoke too soon. It seems to be on and off and still will crash out of PP completely or give an error message. Sometimes it works, often it doesn't. It just seemed to work at first, then started crashing soon after.

We're back to sad again.

Just to let you know, the system we're using it on is a fresh install XP (all updated drivers), a quad CPU on 975x Intel board, 4 GB mem, boot drive + 2 RAID's, and a Matrox Parhelia APVe with the new (non-.NET) PowerDesk SE software and 3 LCD monitors (set up as analog right now).
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Old July 21st, 2007, 11:48 AM   #6
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Further info on the CF/CS3 render bug

David, a couple bits of info on the render bug:

We have gotten the same render error message even at times with the "realtime" CF dissolve transition in CS3 when it's on CF'ed material.

It renders normally when using the default CS3 dissolve transition. That should also be a clue. We never have gotten a crash or render error with the default transitions on CF material if there is only the transition with the CF material.

One more thing: the previews seen when dragging through the timeline do not cause crashes, regardless of what type they are. We can layer CF'ed material with alpha layers and drag-preview no problem. It's only when actually rendering, that the errors or crashes (dumps CS3...POP!) occur.

Please let us know when you have any hope for us. We're anxious for this render fix.
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Old July 21st, 2007, 01:39 PM   #7
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What is the minimum condition to cause this crash, as I'm not able to repeat it on my home PC. Are you still working with alpha channels? What are the media types? What is the frame rate? More information on how to make this happen please. Start a fresh project with just the elements you need to cause the crash and email me that project -- I shouldn't need the media is the crash is in our render code.
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Old July 21st, 2007, 09:21 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Newman View Post
What is the minimum condition to cause this crash, as I'm not able to repeat it on my home PC. Are you still working with alpha channels? What are the media types? What is the frame rate? More information on how to make this happen please. Start a fresh project with just the elements you need to cause the crash and email me that project -- I shouldn't need the media is the crash is in our render code.
Okay David, we'll try to nail those elements down tomorrow and send you the project.

It's strange, but one clue might be when we set up for the render, then save our project and close CS3, then return to the project and render just one little segment of multilayer stuff, it usually will render correctly, even with alpha layers. If we try to do more than one little segment....it gives an error or crashes out of CS3.

All our additional material is pre-sized as 1920x1080 avi's (though we tried mov's too) some with alpha layers, some without at 29.97 NTSC. The video is all 29.97 NTSC from either a Sony V1U or A1 and has been Cineformed to 1920x1080.

Nothing else seems to crash CS3, just this. Very frustrating.

I'll try to make a little project tomorrow and send you.
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 04:22 PM   #9
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David, we're trying to nail down whether this is a hardware prob instead. It is not consistent, which makes it suspect as being some kind of hardware or OS software prob. If there were others complaining about this, we'd be suspicious of CF, as it's only in CS3 and only with CFed material, but ... ?

We're trying to verify that all bios updates have been done correctly to this normally solid Intel mb (D975XBX2) and 6600 Quad processor, and that it's just not some HDD RAID controller prob. We've run stress tests on the system, but nothing seems out of the norm. The strangest thing is that when down-rendering output to 720x480 to review on DVD, it has no probs whatever and happily renders for long periods without errors, as long as the prerendered transitions/effects were done correctly.

This is a head-scratcher.
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 04:29 PM   #10
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Still want to see you project data.
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 04:50 PM   #11
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Should be there. Three layers guarantees a crash or render error message.
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 06:33 PM   #12
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The new PP CS3 3.01 update did NOT fix anything as far as this error is concerned...
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 10:14 PM   #13
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I've thoroughly tested this rendering error on 3 different pc's (2 intel quad, 1 amd dual core) as discussed in my topic on this. with pp2 or pp cs3, create a project with the 60i prospect template and put a captured clip on the timeline. then right click that clip and either slow it down or speed it up, hit render and the pp's will crash "every" single time. now it may crash right at the beginning of the render, sometimes the middle, and sometimes it makes it to the end but it will not finish, it will crash every time. uninstall prospect and install aspect and I have yet to make it crash, lol. now other effects and things also make it crash but I didnt nail down exactly what else does it for after 2 weeks of messing with it I had to give up and get some work done. and also if u use a non prospect template it will not crash. so I believe I've kind of eliminated the "hardware" possibility by getting the same exact result on 3 different pc's. but I can not rule out the possibility of a "stupid" factor as there's a possibility that I'm screwing something up somewhere; however, my renders do run perfect coming out of aspect or an adobe template so I dont know :)
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 11:12 PM   #14
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Mark,

We have reproduced the speed change bug (Adobe's) and are looking for workarounds other than turning off frame blending, however that is not the same as this thread which is about alpha channels.
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Old July 24th, 2007, 01:08 AM   #15
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I want frame blending to die, I hate it, I have to right click and turn it off on every clip. I know this is an adopy thing....sucks.
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