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Old October 8th, 2007, 11:34 AM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Healdsburg, California
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A weird stills issue in FCP

I got an email from a friend last night, asking advice on an issue that is beyond my understanding. It is not something I've run into before.

The text of his email is as follows:

"I have Final Cut Pro 5.1.4. When I import images from files, I get a
combination of square pixel landscape jpegs at 959 x720 and from the
same camera and settings, I get 960x720HD which causes distorted
images on my project which is 4:3. Can not figure out why and I
cannot change the pixel aspect in the browser as Final Cut help says
it can. The aspect ratio is not editable. I's at a loss and this is
slowing me down on this project. I have tried importing again from
the originals and get the same result.

Any ideas?"

I asked him to speciy the source of his stills and his sequence settings. He shared the following:

"FCP handles the square picture conversion and 960x720 is already 4:3 so I should not be getting 16:9 for HD on import. One camera, a Canon Powershot 400 produced 960x720 horizontal and vertical which FCP assigned some horizontal to 920x720HD 16:9,but not others. The other camera, a Nikon, produced 959x720 horizontal and vertical and all came in as 4:3. I think this is something technical that I don't understand yet
with FCP or FCP is being flakey. The Canon had DPI of 180 while the
Nikon was shot at 300. Maybe that has something to do with it. But
then again, all vertical imported without the HD pixel aspect. All
photos are JPEG and the project is set to 720x480 DV-NTSC."

So basically, for some reason, as he imports his still into FCP, some of them arbitrarily change aspect ratios on him (I think) and results in a distortion of his images - but he can't determine a rhyme or reason for it.

Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance.

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Jonathan Jones is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 8th, 2007, 11:39 AM   #2
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Location: Jupiter, FL
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Bring it into Photoshop and change it there and export it.
Mark Bournes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 8th, 2007, 01:22 PM   #3
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Scottsdale, AZ 85260
Posts: 1,538
My bet would be that the two different cameras set different aspect ratio flags in the meta data of the images.

It's no big deal.

In FCP, double click one picure you need to adjust from the browser and load it into the viewer. Then go to the motion tab, and under Distort, use the Aspect slider to correct the picture and save the results.

Then select the corrected image, COPY and then PASTE ATTRIBUTES-Motion to apply the exact same DISTORT to correct all the other similar photos.
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