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Old November 21st, 2009, 02:46 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Rotter View Post
i shoot in HD
There are many flavours of HD, can you be specific?

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edit in HD timeline in final cut pro 7, then export to CBR 6.8 or 7 QT movie.
You export from FCP to what kind of QT movie? What are your exact settings?

Quote:
i will import that into compressor at the 90 minute best quality setting, tweak it for best results!
What are the exact tweaks you are making?

Quote:
then import that into DVD studio pro! the DVD looks like garbage on tv!!! does DVD studio pro encode the already-encoded compressor footage?!?!
On what kind of TV are you evaluating the picture and how is the video signal being delivered to the TV? (HDMI, Component, Composite, Coaxial, S-Video). DVDSP shouldn't be re-encoding your video unless it needed to due to incorrectly formatted assets being imported.

Quote:
can i turn off encoding in DVD studio pro!?
Yes, but you shouldn't have to.

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i got best results by exporting hi rez QT file as H.264 from final cut pro 7 and importing that massive file into iDVD....yes, iDVD. iDVD encodes it great and it looks outstanding! a cheaper program to do a better job?
Why would you go out to a lossy format and then add compression again for DVD? Something in your workflow isn't right, I suspect your trouble starting from when you export out of FCP.

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so, am i right? is DVD studio pro encoding an already-encoded file brought in from compressor? i have wasted hours, as you all have, in experiments.
Perhaps. If it is, you didn't give it correctly formatted media. I have not had these types of issues with DVDSP at all. It's been smooth sailing for me, and I output DVDs on a somewhat regular basis through a FCP -> Compressor -> DVDSP workflow.

What are your system specs?
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Old November 21st, 2009, 02:50 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherif Choudhry View Post
the only thing i picked up in a forum was that compressor has some problem with 2-pass VBR for encoding to mpeg-2 dvd such that it is not much better than 1 pass VBR, so I have used 1 pass VBR in compressor in my projects (to go from prores to mpeg2)

anyone else ever hear of this?
Never heard it, never experienced it.
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Old November 21st, 2009, 03:09 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by Steve Rotter View Post
by the way, i have NEVER exported to H.264 and then used compressor for mpeg. [...] what i did with H.264 files would be to import them right into iDVD since iDVD accepts them and encodes them really well.
In other words, you exported H.264 and then used iDVD for encoding to MPEG-2... it's the same thing.

Quote:
I SHOOT WITH CANON HV30 AND XHA1.
OK, so you're shooting HDV and editing in an HDV timeline. I suggest you search through the "HDV vs Pro Res" timeline threads to learn the ins and outs of editing with these formats. I'm guessing that when you're not exporting as H.264 out of FCP, you're exporting as HDV -- is this correct?

I suggest you take your finished timeline and change the settings to a Pro Res 422 setting and rerender your timeline, then Export QuickTime (not the conversion) which will give you a QT file using the Pro Res 422 codec. Put that through Compressor.

Quote:
I have stumbled on H.264 and LOVE the looks of it. then i read most people are using [Pro Res 422]. not sure what the difference would be.
Significant differences. Completely different specs, completely different uses. H.264 is a delivery codec -- used for on the web, on mobile devices, certain specs used for Blu-ray. Pro Res is an editing codec -- which is pretty much what that sounds like, a codec for editing.

The vast majority of complaints people have with FCS -- particularly Compressor, DVDSP or Color -- have to do with user error or the user's ignorance of an optimal workflow. The solution to this is education, which is what these forums are for (learned so much here myself!), so you're in the right place to find help.
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Old November 21st, 2009, 06:25 PM   #34
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From Mike's post:

"The vast majority of complaints people have with FCS -- particularly Compressor, DVDSP or Color -- have to do with user error or the user's ignorance of an optimal workflow. The solution to this is education, which is what these forums are for (learned so much here myself!), so you're in the right place to find help."

Mucho ditto on that point; you'll be amazed at how much better things get when you become an *educated user*. Knowledge is power, my friend, and the more you have the better your life gets.
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Old November 22nd, 2009, 03:14 AM   #35
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I've noticed from posts in this forum (plus the original poster of this thread) that a number of Sony and Canon HDV users struggle with compressing their 1080i footage and getting an optimum result. Or even an acceptable result.

As something which might help increase their all-round knowledge of Compressor (in the spirit of what Mike and Robert were just talking about) I noticed recently that Brian Gary, who wrote the "Apple Pro Training Series: Compressor Quick-Reference Guide", has recently put out the first "Apple Pro Video Series" tutorials concerning Compressor.

Apparently, Apple have approved these tutorials for Level One Certification on Compressor 3.5 and you can download these tutorials through iTunes for $39.

The info says, "When you are finished watching the tutorial you can opt to take Apple's online exam with the goal of becoming an Apple Certifed Pro in Compressor 3.5."

The full details are here:

Compressor 3.5 AVPs

It could be worth checking out. I've already got his "The Art of Encoding Using Compressor" training DVD, but I'll probably pick up this new iTunes one as well.
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Old November 22nd, 2009, 09:01 AM   #36
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2 thumbs-up for anything coming out of Brian Gary's head.
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Old November 22nd, 2009, 09:16 PM   #37
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thanks guys, and that's why i'm here....to figure out the encrypted jumble of a mess. i'm in no way a beginner to anything computers or the arts. i have my own recording studio where i'm running pro tools 8, i record bands, run sound and foley for films as needed, shoot HD video, and pro photography using the pro line from Canon. i have used adobe's full suite of products including CS4, which i love.

HOWEVER, after using pc's for about 13 years, and nothing else, i recently switched to mac over the summer. i have been trying to figure out FCP for the last couple months. it's not too difficult but adobe was better as far as workflow. sure, there were way too many options in CS4 as well, but...it worked better. there was none of this..... export to a movie, but first, reset your timeline to reflect a 720p, or, try and export your 1920 as a 720p but check the box for progressive first or you will have issues....etc etc etc. there were no hidden areas in CS4...it just worked based on your settings and it always gave great results.

why did i cross over? i have my reasons. i love the mac and the render times are faster. also, my Canon Mark II shoots video in 1920 HD .mov format....the pc has to render all those clips before i can edit! i HATE THAT!!! not so on the mac....my biggest selling point for switching. again, thanks.

currently i'm exporting my HD FCP7 timeline as 720p. i will then take that into compressor and see what happens.

to answer someone's question earlier, all i did with compressor is select the 90 minute best option and only tweak it for CBR7. i think i mentioned that before. the only other thing i did was switch to progressive for scan...i think it was scan...so many settings. or was it frame settings? with CS4 there were also so many settings but you didn't have to or need to tweak these little annoying frame or progressive, etc etc.

i think i will take that compressor course if i am to stay with this.

when i said i shoot in HD, i think i also mentioned it is 1920 rez. not sure what else you would need to know. it is 30p. when i import the footage to FCP7 it asks if i would like to keep the same resultions, etc...i say yes. the timeline then bases itself off what i import. i think i mentioned i shoot with an XHA1 mainly so based on that, you may know what quality i'm getting right out of the cam...timeline...perfect.

here is the bottom line...one would think that taking the timeline and exporting to compressor for DVD would just look great. it doesn't. that is why i have spent hours within days in weeks to figure out the combination of things that need to happen. would be great if it worked really nice with the many settings compressor already as in it.... ie: 90 minute best setting. it doesn't. so now i'm doing another test...export as QT movie from my HD timeline.... apple 720p. there is no apple 422HQ for 720....i'm just using the apple 720p and we'll see what happens. i will stay away from H.264. i still have to read on a good workflow for blu ray. i'm only looking into SD DVD because most clients don't have blu ray.
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Old November 23rd, 2009, 10:05 AM   #38
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the video is better, but still a little pixelated. what i'm going to do now is export my 1920 HD timeline as 720. can someone let me know what to choose? what is the difference between:

DVCPRO 720p
apple pro res 720p
HDV 720p

with apple pro res, it exported as 1280X720. i wanted 720X480. i'm hoping that downsizing during file/export/quicktime movie, then importing that QT 720X480 into compressor will be better than exporting the entire HD timeline into compressor.

the quality is good going from HD timeline to compressor but i know it could be better. i am picky but it can be better. video i shot with my non-HD GL2 DV cams looked so much better than what this is doing now.

thanks!
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Old November 24th, 2009, 08:56 PM   #39
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Steve - sounds to me like you are REALLY over complicating your workflow which is causing the bad results.

Here is what you need to do. You need to have your timeline settings IDENTICAL to what you shot as.

Just dragging one of your regular clips into an empty timeline will do this. Assuming your existing work hasn't had any weird changes to it's settings you should be able to copy and paste everything from the existing sequence into this new sequence and see no difference.

Then you can change your compression on your timeline settings to Prores (either Standard or HQ). That's all you need to do.

Your timeline will be unrendered. Render your timeline.

Export a Quicktime with CURRENT SETTINGS chosen.

Don't use export using Quicktime conversion or anything else.

Bring this into compressor, use the best quality DVD settings. Modify these settings to ensure that you are using the Frame Controls (fourth button in), and that the Resize filter is set to Best and that under Encoder (second button in) it is converting as UPPER field order with a 16:9 aspect ratio.

The only real concern I have is the fact that you are shooting as progressive but capturing as interlaced. Unless you were capturing as PsF or something this sounds to me like you would be losing half of your vertical resolution and may be a big source of your problems.

I haven't worked with 30P at all (live in PAL land) but can't you capture as progressive if you are shooting progressive? (In which case you field order would be set to None in both Compressor and Final Cut).
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Old December 16th, 2009, 03:21 AM   #40
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Hi everybody,
Can´t you just use FCP and select File–Send to–Compressor? (After you have rendered all stuff in the final timeline.)
It will start the Compressor and put the video there. Drag a setting and destination to the window and start.

Then your FCP is free to continue with more work while Compressor is encoding in the background. (No need to go through the Export to ...)

Compressor should do the work to downsize from HD to SD etc.

I can also add that it is very important to get the best settings and use Compressor. For instance a few years ago I had problems with footage that zoomed into a flat blue machine panel. The color changed like cloud patterns while zooming due to lack of enough resolution in the color depth. I upgraded all the way from iMovie to Final Cut Express and then to Final Cut Studio and it was not before I found the better workflow here I became satisfied with hard footage like these.
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Old December 16th, 2009, 08:14 AM   #41
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There is no "File>Send To>Compressor". Did you mean "File>Export>Using Compressor" ?

I use this feature a lot, but realize that when you do, FCP can't be used for anything else until Compressor is done compressing. FCP sends one frame at a time to Compressor, that's why you can't keep working in FCP. Now maybe this has changed in FCP7, I don't know as I only have FCP6 right now.

Yes Compressor will do a great job with your HD to SD downconversion, but you MUST turn on the Frames controls and choose settings that will be a good balance between final video quality and render time. If you don't use the Frame controls, you probably won't get good results, especially if you have any graphics in your sequence.

I'll confess, I haven't tried any of the other workflows described here. (using PC only software, etc...) I've been happy with the quality of Compressor for transcoding files.
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Old December 16th, 2009, 10:46 AM   #42
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There IS a File>Send to>Compressor in Final Cut Pro 7. Also there is the 'Share' feature.
You can make up presets in Compressor, and then use the 'Share' button and choose which
Compressor preset to use to compress your movie (there are some presets already made
for you like 'iPod' 'Apple TV' 'Youtube' 'MobileMe' and such, but you can add your own.)
The advantage of this, is that you can go back into FCP and edit while it is compressing your movie,
instead of waiting for FCP to send the movie frame by frame to compressor. If I recall correctly,
this is one of the 'more than 100 improvements' from FCP 6 to FCP7.
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Old December 16th, 2009, 01:51 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johan Forssblad View Post
File–Send to–Compressor
Mitchell, I should perhaps have mentioned that it came in FCP7 (as Gabe wrote) and it was worth the upgrade itself. I guess it should have been included from the start ...

It is very handy when making DVD projects with plenty of tracks from different FCP sequences and will speed up the workflow.
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Old December 22nd, 2009, 01:19 PM   #44
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Don't forget that the Share Option at this point doesn't work with clusters. It's a bug that hopefully get's fixed very soon because now the marketing campaign is very misleading around a feature that could be great if it worked liked advertised.
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Old December 30th, 2009, 06:09 PM   #45
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I think it's the 30p is the real problem.

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Originally Posted by Steve Rotter View Post
I SHOOT WITH CANON HV30 AND XHA1. I SHOOT IN 30P...29.97. WHEN I CAPTURE TO THE FCP TIMELINE I CAPTURE VIA TAPE AND SET TO HDV1080i60. T
Steve
Steve: Hey I think the problems starts way back here. Something that is often overlooked is the original frame rate vs where you are sending it. Are you still shooting 30p? Well stop! DVD and Blue Ray do not support 30p at all. What comes out is 24p with a bunch of interlaced frames that become field doubled in the DVD player. So it makes an awful pixelated, flexing (twittering), mess... especially around straight lines. Shoot, edit and export to DVD in 24p or 60i. Leave the 30p to the web videos. Give it a shot and see what happens. Also you may want to turn down your sharpness/detail enhancments in your camera. Most cameras default to unrealistically high edge sharpening out of the box to fool us customers into theinking the cameras and lenses are sharper than they are. Most consumer and pro-sumer cameras use pixel shifting and edge sharpening to get more mathematical resolution out the the CCD/Cmos chips. This process can and often does add garbage to the source video so that when the Compressor or similar program scales the video down, that video garbage can be retained and add unwanted mackie lines and other issues in your final production.

I still think most of your issues is waaaaay back at the beginning because of the 30p aquisition, unless you were meaning you where cpaturing 1080i 60i. if you shoot 24p/f with your cameras, FCP has a setting for 1080i 24p as I remember that is pretty solid when I used a Canon 3 chip last summer.
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