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Old October 27th, 2003, 09:41 AM   #16
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Steve wrote: "Sorry, but who in their right mind would uncompress 19Mbps MPEG-2 and recompress it to Pixelet for compositing work?!?"

Why not? I am not working on a multimillion dollar blockbuster and can't afford to do uncompressed. Pixlet seems the next best solution. So far the only person that has stated they have actually used pixlet is Paul Mogg and he can't see any difference in quality! You claim that there is a huge loss in quality, but haven't given any proof. Have you actually used pixlet? I'll admit that I haven't, but based on what Paul is saying I don't see why it couldn't be used for compositing. After all HDV is compressed to begin with, and switching formats of compression doesn't guarantee a loss in quality.

If I were shooting on a CineAlta or Varicam there is no way I would work in Pixlet other than for offline purposes. However, HDV is not uncompressed and until someone can prove there is a "huge" loss of quality I don't see why Pixlet is not a viable option.

"HDVcinema now has an HDgateway process that let's you edit with Proxy and use 8-bit or 10-bit uncompressed video for use with the Kona HD card."

If I had a Kona HD Card I doubt that I would use HDVCinema. I mean, if I could afford all of the "real" HD equipment then I wouldn't be using HDV now would I?

"Pixlet is for distribution for very good reasons."

So is MPEG-2 and thats not stopping anyone!




As I've said before, it seems that HDVCinema is a wonderful product from what I've heard. But I feel that I have to take everything you post with a grain of salt because you are trying to sell your product. It seems that you've been opposed to Pixlet from day 1 and all of your posts seem to be a way to prove HDVCinema is a superior solution.

Maybe HDVCinema is superior, but it sure seems like you spend a lot of time trying to shoot down any alternative. Actually, this post wasn't even started to prove pixlet as an alternative, but for some reason you felt the need to bring up HDVCinema anyway.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 09:56 AM   #17
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<<<-- Originally posted by Brad Hawkins : After all HDV is compressed to begin with, and switching formats of compression doesn't guarantee a loss in quality. -->

You are not simply switching formats. You are changing compression schemes. That is far different.

Also, Paul has only looked at the conversion TO pixlet. When he looks at Pixlet back to MPEG-2 blown to 6-feet, I'll be more convinced.


"If I were shooting on a CineAlta or Varicam there is no way I would work in Pixlet other than for offline purposes."

Your highly compressed HDV is more fragile than the LIGHTLY compressed HDCAM or DVCPRO HD.


If I had a Kona HD Card I doubt that I would use HDVCinema. I mean, if I could afford all of the "real" HD equipment then I wouldn't be using HDV now would I?

I don't think you understand the role of a Kona HD card. And, a Blackmagic card is only $2000. You very much would want to SHOOT HDV. And, yes you would want HDVcinema because you've got to get HDV to the HD codec AND you've got to get Proxy video.


"It seems that you've been opposed to Pixlet from day 1 and all of your posts seem to be a way to prove HDVCinema is a superior solution."

Because HDVcinema is a total EDITING SOLUTION not just a codec. Aspect HD is also a total EDITING SOLUTION, not just a codec.

Experimentation is fun -- I did it last spring/summer -- but editing to generate a profit where others can reject your work because they don't like its quality is very different. And it is getting paid for your final HD product that is the point isn't it?
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Old October 27th, 2003, 10:29 AM   #18
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HDVCinema vs. Pixlet...my 19,900 cents:

HDV Cinema:
PROS:
- Realtime FX in FCP
- Smaller overall size (Proxy + MPEG2) compared to Pixlet
- Minimal format conversion for quality purposes (MPEG2 stays as source)
- Faster to editing (m2t >> m2v >> proxy, assuming that proxies are generated quicker than pixlet)
- Faster to back to deck/camera (edit project online >> convert to m2t)
- Realtime editing on slower machines (Pixlet requires G4 1 GHz)

CONS:
- $200 and rising. (Wasn't it $100 a week ago?)
- Offline to online process (time consuming)
- No live output to NTSC or HD monitor (Although ther are no reasons the proxy couldn't be DV anamorphic which would allow for live viewing through firewire - HD10U outputs DV 16:9)
- Must go back to online even if the final product is DVD widescreen

USING PIXLET CODEC IN FCP:
PROS:
- Online full HD Rez editing on G4 1GHz
- Ready for conversion to DVD Widescreen, DV 16:9, web Stream, etc. without having to go back to source files
- Color correction on actual footage
- Real size titles, graphics, compositing in other apps.
- Apple supported format...shouldn't be long before FCP allows for direct capture of HDV to Pixlet and Pixlet to m2t or better yet to Deck!
- Live realtime viewing of canvas on HD monitor
- FREE! with Panther

CONS:
- 2nd compression on source file, possible impact on quality
- Bigger file size than proxy. Harder to edit on laptop. Although, Pixlet can be any size...even proxy size
- Longer process to edit (m2t >> m2v >> Pixlet)
- No RT FX
- Needs to be reconverted to m2v and then m2t for output to HD deck/Camera

My Conclusion:
If your final product is HD, it's probably safer and faster, overall, to keep your source file as MPEG-2. Using HDVCinema with DV 16:9 proxy seems like the most efficient solution. It also is a better solution if your machine is slower than G4 1GHz.

If you plan on delivering your final product on DVD Widescreen, I would go with Pixlet. Because you edit from higher rez and...but wait a second? If Steve says that his plugin allows you to use the MPEG 2 in FCP, I bet you some dual G4 or G5 would be able to play that realtime. And if that's the case why go to Pixlet when you can stay in MPEG 2 online in FCP.

So many criteria, so confusing.

I'll probably use Pixlet because it's free.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 10:51 AM   #19
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On the KONA or Decklink solutions, I'd like to point out you don't require a proxy to edit this footage. You can capture from the camera via an Analog-digital converter to the Kona Card in it's own codec, which is uncompressed. You can also select either 8 bit or 10 bit color.

The Decklink card is not available yet, so perhaps we should leave it out of the equation.

As to the pros editing in a proxy..... I'm sorry that's not my experience. There are situations where someone will offline a production using a proxy format but if you're talking Hollywood - no. they keep it in HD.

If you own an edit suite that has the capability to edit in HD, you're gonna edit in uncompressed HD.

Steve's plugin provides a value to folks who want to work in that workflow and does provide an inexpensive alternative for Mac users.

Aspect HD from CineForm also provides a great workflow for people who use PC's and Premiere.

There are compromises to using bleeding edge technology and waiting for software to keep up or catch up is one of them.

I haven't yet received my copy of Panther, so I can't try Pixelet until perhaps later today or tomorrow, but I'm interested in seeing how it works.

As to rendering......well I don't like doing it, but computers are so fast these days that a render is not that time intensive anymore. I was surprised that even rendering uncompressed HD didn't significantly increase my time.

just my 2 cents
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Old October 27th, 2003, 11:28 AM   #20
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<<<-- Originally posted by Darren Kelly : You can capture from the camera via an Analog-digital converter -->

Very true, but you'll pay $1200 for the converter! And you'll be decompressing to analog and then digitizing again. Much better to capture via FireWire and stay digital.



"As to the pros editing in a proxy..... I'm sorry that's not my experience. There are situations where someone will offline a production using a proxy format but if you're talking Hollywood -- no. they keep it in HD."

That's been true when folks had to pay $20K or more to edit HD. But now that an HD PCI card has dropped in price to $2000 to $4000 -- and falling fast -- many will be moving to edit to HD. They will not want to ALSO buy SCSI with 15kRPM quad stripped RAID systems. That's why they will use Proxy, which IS part of the Kona HD workflow.


"As to rendering......well I don't like doing it, but computers are so fast these days that a render is not that time intensive anymore."

For transitions, I agree. But when you color correct an entire production, you'll not want to render. Or, at least I don't. It can kill creativity.


My entire point is why spend time devising workarounds when two complete solutions already exist. To save a few hundred dollars? To save $1200?

Maybe I'm missing WHY folks bought an HD camcorder. I certainly wouldn't spend $3500 and not be shooting and editing HD productions.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 11:44 AM   #21
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Re: HDVCinema vs. Pixlet...my 19,900 cents:

<<<-- Originally posted by Frederic Haubrich :

Very good summary! Thank you!

"If you plan on delivering your final product on DVD Widescreen, I would go with Pixlet. Because you edit from higher rez and...but wait a second? If Steve says that his plugin allows you to use the MPEG 2 in FCP, I bet you some dual G4 or G5 would be able to play that realtime. And if that's the case why go to Pixlet when you can stay in MPEG 2 online in FCP. -->>>

I just asked Paul to test this out!!!

On a dual G4 1.42GHz HD MPEG-2 almost played smoothly. It might be that a dual 2GHz G5 will play it smoothly.

And if you don't care about RT, it might be a cool way to go. Like Vegas!

Using Pixlet when your output will be SD seems like it should work fine. However, after Sony's cautions about concatinating codecs I'm leary. Think of the total signal flow: MPEG-2 > Pixlet > DV/DVCPRO > link to cable co. using MPEG-2 > link to your home > MPEG-2.

If you lose quality using Pixlet, then it undoes your goal in shooting HD in the first place.

Saving $200 doesn't seem worth the risk -- does it really?

I can't test Panther on my big machine till I know Avid's Xpress DV Pro and Mojo will run under it. So I'm locked out of testing. Will try it on my iBook today.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 01:39 PM   #22
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HDVCinema Review

Could we start a thread called HDVCinema Review.

I would love to read reviews from people who have used Steve's solution. Perhaps they're too busy editing now that they can and they stopped coming to this board.

Steve, would you like to start the thread?

Have you thought about limiting your software for a monthly trial or something like it.

I don't have a problem spending $200 (BTW, did you raise the price?) as long as I know I'm getting a true value for it.

Also, the whole 'no paypal' only checks sent to my home thing, tends to turn people off.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 02:41 PM   #23
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<<<-- Originally posted by Steve Mullen :

Very true, but you'll pay $1200 for the converter! And you'll be decompressing to analog and then digitizing again. Much better to capture via FireWire and stay digital.


Actually, the converter is closer to $2500.00. You then capture uncompressed from the camera. No more compression.



"That's been true when folks had to pay $20K or more to edit HD. But now that an HD PCI card has dropped in price to $2000 to $4000 -- and falling fast -- many will be moving to edit to HD. They will not want to ALSO buy SCSI with 15kRPM quad stripped RAID systems. That's why they will use Proxy, which IS part of the Kona HD workflow."

Steve, the only way to edit uncompressed HD is with a SCSI raid system. Now you can feed it with an IDE based SCSI RAID, but it still requires it. Remember, the average HD product is not going to be uncle Fred's 25th anniversary celebration. It's a higher end production, so they will spend the $12K I outlined on another thread to build a basic system to do it. It's tens of thousands less than it once was and affordable for most Documentary productions, Corporate presentations, etc.


" But when you color correct an entire production, you'll not want to render. Or, at least I don't. It can kill creativity."

If you have to color correct an entire production, youhave more problems than the editing system you own and rendering. You have major problems with your camera operator - lighting director and you have no business being in the business. You have a budget to color correct in a color correrction suite.


"My entire point is why spend time devising workarounds when two complete solutions already exist. To save a few hundred dollars? To save $1200?"

Steve your package is a work around in itself. that's it's primary value. If Apple were to release FCP with the ability to deal with native HDV - Mpeg2TS, you would not be in business. Until that happens - and it will - this whole format is a work around.


"Maybe I'm missing WHY folks bought an HD camcorder. I certainly wouldn't spend $3500 and not be shooting and editing HD productions. -->>>"

That's what people are telling you about Pixelet. They want to keep their productions in HD for editing. Until Adobe and Apple and Avid decide to support this new format with native support for the digital stream both in and out via FW, there will be work arounds.

Beside, there is more trouble anyway. No one can output an HD signal to a format that is universally available to play. I mean to say, DVHS is not a standard, and not in many homes/offices. There is no HDDVD yet, and the penetration of HDTV's is still low.

This is Bleeding edge remember?

DBK
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Old October 27th, 2003, 03:18 PM   #24
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<<<-- Originally posted by Darren Kelly :

Steve, the only way to edit uncompressed HD is with a SCSI raid system. Now you can feed it with an IDE based SCSI RAID, but it still requires it. -->

That's only partly true. You need only enough fast disk space for the final production, but IF YOU USE PROXY you do not need it for all your source footage.

That's one of Blackmagic's and Kona's selling points. You may not use proxy, but please don't suggest that HD is not edited off-line. It certainly is.

And, for a documentry filmmaker it can save thousands of dollars on fast disks. We just had a post that someone shot 78 hours. That's 78 times 300GB! With proxy its 78 times 850 megabytes. You do the math.


"If you have to color correct an entire production, youhave more problems than the editing system you own and rendering. You have major problems with your camera operator - lighting director and you have no business being in the business."

That's just plain BS. Anyone shooting with the JVC is very likely to color correct every frame, if only to bring the peaks within spec. Moreover, color correction isn't only to FIX things as you imply.


" Beside, there is more trouble anyway. No one can output an HD signal to a format that is universally available to play. I mean to say, DVHS is not a standard, and not in many homes/offices. There is no HDDVD yet, and the penetration of HDTV's is still low."

Sounds like you not expecting to sell many of your DVDs. :)

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Old October 27th, 2003, 03:27 PM   #25
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Steve:
"And, for a documentry filmmaker it can save thousands of dollars on fast disks. We just had a post that someone shot 78 hours. That's 78 times 300GB! With proxy its 78 times 850 megabytes. You do the math."

For clarification Steve. Don't you need space for the 78HRs in full rez even when you use proxy? You can't capture in proxy directly from tape right? You need to capture the m2t, then convert to m2v, then convert to proxy. So estimated you need 78 times 300GB (m2t)...which you can delete after converting to m2v + 78 times 300GB (m2v) + 78 times 850 MB for proxy.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 03:32 PM   #26
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I would be happy to test and review Steve's HDVCinema on a dual G5 with Panther if Steve would care to send me a copy to test. If it is better than the the Pixlet workflow, I'm all for using it.
I'm just very happy to have what I regard as a real edtiing solution in Pixlet right now.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 04:11 PM   #27
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<<<-- Originally posted by Steve Mullen :

That's one of Blackmagic's and Kona's selling points. You may not use proxy, but please don't suggest that HD is not edited off-line. It certainly is.


I didn't suggest HD is not editied offline, it is. I said the pros tend to keep it in HD.
The Pros are not going to use software work arounds to convert it to offline, they are going to have it captured using an uncompressed HD solution, have that converted to offline - say motion JPEG and edit that.

And, for a documentry filmmaker it can save thousands of dollars on fast disks. We just had a post that someone shot 78 hours. That's 78 times 300GB! With proxy its 78 times 850 megabytes. You do the math.

78 hours of footage is an amazing amount of footage. Chances are he'll need to be very selective on his capture.

"That's just plain BS. Anyone shooting with the JVC is very likely to color correct every frame, if only to bring the peaks within spec. Moreover, color correction isn't only to FIX things as you imply."

I know color correction is not just to fix things. It can be an effect too. It still doesn't matter Steve. If you correct everyframe, I'd rather do it in the tapes final destination format - HD than fool with it in the DV 4:1:1 format, then bring it back into a higher color format only to find the color correction is not correct and do it again. Further, anything you do in the proxy edit HAS TO RENDER IN THE FULL FOOTAGE. You can't avoid rendering with your proxy method. IT IS A FACT OF LIFE!!!

"Sounds like you not expecting to sell many of your DVDs. :) -->>>"

The DVD is intended to teach people how to get the most out of the camera, and how to edit it. It's not intended to be distributed in HD. For $49.95 until October 31 and $59.95 after the value is amazing. Free jumpbacks, demo software, a DVD and a DVDROM. We show people how to edit with both the Mac and PC. There is no higher value. It's also easy to buy as we take paypal, Visa/MC or cheques.

Sorry for the commercial.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 04:21 PM   #28
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Ladies and gents,

You have just witnessed the battle of the HDV opportunists.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 04:26 PM   #29
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<<<-- Originally posted by Frederic Haubrich : For clarification Steve. So estimated you need 78 times 300GB (m2t)...which you can delete after converting to m2v + 78 times 300GB (m2v) + 78 times 850 MB for proxy. -->>>

Nooo. MPEG-2 is very compact. Not 300GB per hour, only 9GBs per hour. So this is 78 x 9GB. (DV is 13GB per hour.) Proxy is 78 x 8.5MB. That's megabytes!

Going to Pixlet is 32GB per hour.

ProxyProcess is a huge savings in the real-world. That's why the world does so much off-line work with HD.

And, Darren, none of the capture apps let you log and batch capture. Why? Because no timecode is available from FireWire -- although it's on the tape.

As you say, life on the bleeding edge.
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Old October 27th, 2003, 04:29 PM   #30
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1) I just went and re-read the FAQ area of this site. I'd suggest others do the same to re-fresh your memories on conduct. I'm getting stressed out reading all these posts. We're suppose to be helping each other - remember?? Think before you post please!

2) Some of us want to contribute our findings about Pixlet, HDcinema and Panther etc. -- however, no one wants to be attacked. I'd like to suggest we all RELAX for a moment. It seems like everyone is throwing lots of information back and forth. I'm someone caught in the middle of all this technical talk - and I bet I'm not alone. It's more than possible for all of us to learn from each other - in a less hectic manner.

3) Darren, I'm looking forward to your DVD - which I already ordered! Can we expect to get it on Nov. in the mail?? That would be great!

4) We should all be HAPPY - HD is finally here for everyone! I'd like to thank everyone who's helped me out on this forum. :)

Chris
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