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Glenn Taylor September 13th, 2006 05:45 AM

HDV to DVD
 
Hi there, I was wondering if footage shot by XL-H1, edited in FCP and output to DVD would look better ie sharper than when shot on say an XL2 given that lighting is well sorted and in experienced hands. The reason I ask is that I'm shooting next week and need to output that corporate doco to DVD. I am toying with buying the XL-H1 if I can get a much better result. Any advice would be much appreciated.
Thankyou
Glenn

Steve Rosen September 13th, 2006 10:57 AM

People will undoubtedly jump all over me for saying this, but no, it won't look better - and it might even look worse unless you've got the time to tweak things..

I just finished the exact type of project you mentioned, and in my case there were a lot of graphics included. I like working with the HDV material because I like how it looks on my monitor (I use a DeckLink card).. But no one actually gets to see it that way - yet, so I had to convert it to SD for the graphics, which was an extra step..

My advice, unless there is an HD future for your project (which there supposedly is for mine) is to shoot SD with the XL2... it's a very fine camera.

The learning curve with the H1 is not something you want to be doing on someone elses dime - so shoot with what you know and use the cash to buy and H1 when you've got time to learn it's (and HDV's) idiosyncrasies...

Doug Bennett September 13th, 2006 01:08 PM

I would go with the H1 for an important shoot for the same reason I'd shoot a DSLR raw not jpeg.

If you nail everything perfectly then I can't see the XLH1 is going to outperform the XL2. If you need to tweak the framing, remove any camera movement, perform heavy image enhancement etc. the HDV image is the one you want.

Steve Rosen September 13th, 2006 02:21 PM

Greg: What I've done is originate on HDV and edit in HDV on a G5 Quad. For projects with simple graphics, like ID fonts, I create the mpg2 file using Compressor and burn the DVD from that..

With specialty graphics (ie, logos, agency PSD files or subtitles, etc) I find it best to convert HDV to SD in the timeline - either copy the edit from your HDV timeline and paste in an SD timeline, being careful about field conversion because the computer won't do it automatically as a "paste" - or export an HDV Quicktime Movie, then import it and place it into an SD timeline (field conversion will happen automatically)... Then add your graphics. You will need to re-render the entire show.

The advantage of the latter approach (making a Quicktime Movie) is that you will always have a textless ("nude") HDV version backed up.

For some reason that is contrary to logical thinking (mine at least) the graphics from the HDV timeline don't hold up as well when crunched by compressor for the DVD.

You could, of course, always capture clips from the deck down-converted to SD, but you may as well just use the XL2 in that case and, as I said, I really like working with the crisp images that HDV produces, and I like having the HDV master available for future venues.


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