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Old March 24th, 2009, 10:22 PM   #1
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Combine 2 Short Films & Convert Pal to NTSC w/Minimal Processing?

I have to short films in PAL DVD video format that I need to combine to 1 DVD, add menu & convert to NTSC. I'd like to do this with minimal degradation in quality. I have Toast Titanium 10 & FCE 4 at my disposal as well as iLife '08. I'm very new to these programs as well as video editing. I know that Toast will do the PAL-NTSC convers, but it seems in order to combine these films & add a menu, I have to convert to some file format. Doesn't seem MPEG-2 is an option. Suggestions on what do do are appreciated.
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Old March 25th, 2009, 11:58 AM   #2
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Set your DVD player to playback in NTSC (if it can) and capture the PAL DVD thru the camera to DV tape or directly to the computer. Then edit the titles in FCP and encode a new DVD thru iDVD or DVD Studio pro.
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Old March 25th, 2009, 03:59 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William Hohauser View Post
Set your DVD player to playback in NTSC (if it can) and capture the PAL DVD thru the camera to DV tape or directly to the computer. Then edit the titles in FCP and encode a new DVD thru iDVD or DVD Studio pro.
Well an NTSC player won't play PAL video.

Are you saying there might be some advantage to adding the menu in FCExpress over just letting Toast do it? The videos themselves don't need any editing. I just want to combine them onto 1 DVD with a menu button for each.
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Old March 25th, 2009, 04:23 PM   #4
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My $79 Phillips NTSC player plays PAL and converts it to NTSC during playback. Nice machine but for some reason chokes on Criterion films. Plays everything else.

The suggestion was to give you a quick and easy way to convert PAL to NTSC with decent results. FCE was to clean up the in and out points before you brought the QuickTime files into iDVD or Toast.

Here is an alternate. Use MPEGStreamclip to convert the PAL DVD into PAL Quicktime DV files. Import these files into FCE and drop them on separate NTSC sequences. You'll need to render them. Export the rendered timelines as QuickTime movies to import into Toast. Or have MPEGStreamclip export the DVDs as NTSC Quicktime files but be sure to specify 29.97fps. This method will work but the converted PAL files will have movement jitters as FCE and MPEGStreamclip don't convert 25fps into 30fps very well. You'll have to purchase plug-ins to get a PAL-NTSC conversion with better frame interpolation.
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Old March 25th, 2009, 06:07 PM   #5
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You had me upset that your player plays PAL and then to find out my daughter's $15 Chinese model played it without question but my $5500 Lexicon RT-20 would not! So I played w/the video settings & found that if I changed the TV Output settings from Multi to NTSC, it's plays my Pal formatted movies without rolling the video (doesn't make much sense to me however). Thanx... you've saved me some work!

Now I really don't have to do the conversion, but just out of curiosity... couldn't I do the same thing in Toast as you suggest w/MPEGStreamclip? I have the option to convert to DV or even HDV and if the file I'm converting is PAL, it will automatically ask if I want to convert to NTSC. Aside from the frame interpolation, how much degradation would be expected from a DVD video to DV or HDV (so that I can set a menu) then rendered (not sure if I'm using this term in the proper place) back to DVD video?
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Old March 25th, 2009, 09:28 PM   #6
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Depending on the original DVD, DVD to DV is not bad at all. The video is being changed to a frame based codec so that helps preserve the quality.

When re-authoring DVDs, I try to avoid transcoding at all. I'll extract the mpeg files off the DVD and use a program like DVD Studio Pro to put them back in a new order without recompressing the video or audio. Unfortunately going PAL to NTSC forces recompression. I would avoid using transcoding to HDV as that's really compressed.
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