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Old January 22nd, 2005, 09:18 AM   #1
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Smooth iMovie/FCP HD HDV Workflow

Last night I was playing with the new iMovie 5 ($79, free on new Macs) and figured out a very nice HDV workflow for Mac users.

First of all, it is important to mention that when installing the new iMovie, the Apple Intermediate Codec shows up in the QuickTime codec list. This portion is key to this solution.

Here's the workflow:

1. Capture a whole HDV (1080i or 720p) tape in iMovie.

Features scene detection, capture, demux and auto encode to the Apple Intermediate Codec. Audio sync is perfect because it isn't using the buggy MPEG2 QuickTime Component.

2. Show package content and move the media to a dedicated FCP folder

CTRL-Click on the iMovie project file and all your captured clips will reside in the media folder in the Apple Intermediate Codec (AIC).

3. Import all the mov (Apple Intermediate Codec) into FCP

You can simply import the AIC movs in FCP HD. They will play in realtime in full resolution (720p or 1080i). You will get a warning that the clips aren't optimized for FCP HD, ignore it for now.

4. Setup a sequence using the appropriate Apple Intermediate Codec format (1080i or 720p)

It is important to setup a proper sequence in FCP HD that matches the HDV specs. Clicking on 'Advance' for the compressor will allow you to set the codec to 720p or 1080i or other (more coming soon...)

5. Edit in realtime in FCP full res HD

At this point, you can edit your clips in full res and realtime. Even FX are realtime! It is a bit buggy but if you preferred the proxy approach you could always use media manager to make a DV or DVCPRO HD version of your project for true realtime.

6. Output timeline to Apple Intermediate Codec

Finsihed editing in realtime... simply render your timeline to the AIC in the proper resolution.

7. Import the final render in iMovie

Import that AIC file into iMovie. As long as it is the AIC, it'll import fine.

8. Output the imported final render from iMovie to the HDV camera (1080i or 720p)

Send it back to the camera (Sony or JVC) in full HDV resolution.

That's it, a perfectly workable workflow for Mac users. Not very much unlike the Cineform approach for PC users.

Frederic
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Old January 22nd, 2005, 10:21 AM   #2
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Thanks Lumiere HD and Frederic...pioneers of HDV software!

Hey, thanks Frederic.

I'd like to point out to everyone that Frederic and Co. have provided a Mac solution for the longest time. He and his team have paved the way, and we should all thank them for being such great colleagues. Without Lumiere HD many of us would have been stuck in the mud.

Thanks Lumiere HD and Frederic...pioneers of HDV software!

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Old January 22nd, 2005, 01:40 PM   #3
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Wow Frederic,

Thanks, I have to wonder, is it really in your commercial interests to post information like this.

I have a couple of Qs

What are the sizes of the AIC files compared to the original 25Mbs HDV files?

2 are the original HDV transport streams deleted on the fly as they're converted or are they kept?
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Old January 22nd, 2005, 02:24 PM   #4
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Dylan,

Honestly, commercial interest has never been our priority. Commercial viability yes, but our primary focus has always been to solve a problem because we are editors ourselves. Especially since the only solutions available, at a time we decided to develop LHD, were less than adequate ($5,000 requiring rendering at each cut & $350 manual on how to use an unstable package of shareware).

We aren't getting rich with Lumiere HD but we have been able to operate and try to fill a gap without loosing money. We have kept the software at the lowest possible price ($179) in order to reinvest in R&D, advertising and operational costs.

Having said that, we always knew that native HDV support from Apple was the ultimate solution and frankly we have been looking forward to it. This new suggested workflow is the closest we've ever been to it and we feel it is the best solution to edit HDV on FCP HD today... so we are sharing it with everyone else.

To answer your question about AIC files compared to the original 25Mbps HDV files, I don't have the exact answer at this point. Anyone with an FX1 can import some footage and compare.

I can tell you that the AIC HDV 720p is 4.0 MB/sec (1:24:21 clip = 343.4 MB). Not bad at all.

Yes, the m2ts and m2vs are automatically deleted.

Frederic
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Old January 22nd, 2005, 03:05 PM   #5
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Frederic is one of those guys who will succeed at just about anything he tries. Lumiere HD is but one small facet of Mr. Haubrich's business career. Long after Lumiere, you'll still find him doing many other commercially viable (and technologically impressive) ventures. I've met the man, and let me tell you, there is no stopping him.
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Old January 22nd, 2005, 03:14 PM   #6
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Amen! Frederic has provided the utmost in customer service and is to be commended for helping early consumer HD camcorder adopters maintain their sanity by providing a much needed software path to FCP. Thanks, Frederic. DCS
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Old January 22nd, 2005, 03:15 PM   #7
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Awesome stuff Frederic! Can I also add that Frederic is a pleasure to work with on a business level, and that he and his company are certainly one to watch for any future endeavours he undertakes.

Graeme
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Old January 22nd, 2005, 05:37 PM   #8
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some more info on How To

Frederic was first up, he emailed me as I was working on my write up doing the same thing. I've posted my version (it's the same process, just my write-up on it), as well as some notes about how FCP responds to that imported HDV footage, and exact settings to use in Final Cut Pro HD to get your footage in and working right and working with realtime effects.

3way color corrector is pretty consistently realtime on 1080i60 footage on a dual 2.5 GHz G5, but transitions are NOT unless you drop from high to medium quality in the Video Preview window.

If you're into this stuff, has some stuff not mentioned in Frederic's (excellent) write-up.

The article is here:

http://www.hdforindies.com/2005/01/y...dv-in-fcp-with
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Old January 22nd, 2005, 09:16 PM   #9
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Frederic is a great guy, and I know he'll do well, especially with Lumiere Media and his film career! Thanks for the head's up!

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Old January 22nd, 2005, 09:18 PM   #10
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ps-Call Apple and ask about buying iMovie HD seperate for $10.

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Old January 23rd, 2005, 08:50 AM   #11
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MPEG2Works from Tosa Serbian

Thanks all for your kind remarks.

Great developers have been instrumental in developing the software. Graeme Nattress (http://www.nattresss.com), Srdjan Curcic, Eric Petit and others.

But I must point out that without Tosa Serbian, lumiere HD would never had seen the light of day. Tosa has been the best partner you could ever hope for. He is a one of a kind developer and a remarkable innovator. I just came up with the idea and general design, Tosa actually built the thing!

I highly recommend his shareware to anyone who works with video on a Mac. It is called "MPEG2Works". You can learn more here:

http://www.mpeg2works.com/

It will be the best $10 you'll ever spend!

Frederic
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Old January 23rd, 2005, 12:59 PM   #12
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Frederic's awesome workflow procedure has now been immortalized as an article at our HDV Info Net main site. The link is http://www.hdvinfo.net/articles/edit...dvworkflow.php.
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Old January 23rd, 2005, 01:20 PM   #13
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I noticed if you transcode to Apple Intermeditate Codec footage from Quicktime, it is noncompatible with Final Cut Pro HD. Although the same files from iMovie import fine. I think something to do with how QT wraps up the video file.
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Old January 23rd, 2005, 01:21 PM   #14
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Note: Apple took away the option to buy iMovie HD for $10.

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Old January 24th, 2005, 11:25 AM   #15
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Additional info on the workflow -- Keep your Transport Stream

If you need your Transport Stream final output, you can get it before it gets deleted by iMovie.

You might want it for DVD backup, Film Festival movie transfer, etc...

First, to generate the transport stream, you need to File/Share and choose the HDV device (camera/deck) to share with.

While your movie gets encoded and multiplexed, a temporary Transport Stream or (RAW Mpeg file) is being created in the Cache folder in your iMovie project file. It is called "HDVExport.mpv". When iMovie asks you if you want to make another export so you don't have to re-encode, simply copy that file to another location.

You can rename the ext to .ts and read it in VLC.

This is how you can keep your Transport Stream if you need it.

Frederic
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