FCP5: native HDV? - Page 3 at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Apple / Mac Post Production Solutions > Final Cut Suite

Final Cut Suite
Discussing the editing of all formats with FCS, FCP, FCE


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old April 21st, 2005, 07:48 PM   #31
New Boot
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Shaw
I didn't want to make my comments sound like just a cross-platform comparison rant.
If you don't want to sound like a Mac basher, why don't you just wait to see how FCP 5.0 handles HDV editing before you declare its software and hardware inferior? patience...
Thomas Ferlauto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 21st, 2005, 10:46 PM   #32
MPS Digital Studios
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Palm Beach County, Florida
Posts: 8,531
FCP 5 is perfect for pro-level work.

heath
__________________
My Final Cut Pro X blog
Heath McKnight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 22nd, 2005, 04:16 AM   #33
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: UK
Posts: 383
Until we have FCP 5 on our systems it is all just theory. AIC is not great at the moment, but I'm sure it will be improved and its not going to take much it's almost there. We did a side by side comparison with the same footage from PPro 1.51 with the Cineform Codec and FCP Express, We edited the same sequence on both systems and sent it back to HDV Tape, we then viewed the final results on a CRT HD component monitor

Cineform was much more reliable quality, AIC matched the quality in some shots but not in others, where the "box" pattern was observed, but it was much closer than I imagined it would be.

As a PS to this test, a large HDV project we have been working on in PPro has now started to corrupt itself after 3 weeks work, with no means of recovery, so we are now re-editing in FCE!

Can't wait for FCP 5
Steve Connor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 22nd, 2005, 05:31 AM   #34
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Saskatoon, Canada (was London, UK)
Posts: 138
Quote:
MPEG2 (on which HDV is based) is an inherently lossy editing format, such that if you make a change to something, save it in HDV and then re-edit it again, your first set of changes can get degraded in obvious ways during the second revision. That's exactly what Cineform demonstrates on the web page I referenced, but you have to scroll down a ways to see the examples.
And, as I said, THE WHOLE POINT of native HDV editing is that you _don't_ do that. Only an idiot would keep recompressing their footage in MPEG-2 for precisely that reason... and I very much doubt that the developers for FCP are idiots.

It's impossible to produce a less degraded result than by editing in HDV and only re-compressing to MPEG-2 for final output. Any intermediate codec you use will give you _more_ degradation, not less.

The one thing you don't want to do is then recapture that edited HDV footage and re-edit it. But that comes back to the whole question of what format you master to if you shot HDV: HDV is a decent shooting format, but a crappy mastering format.
Mark Grant is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 22nd, 2005, 12:57 PM   #35
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 2,488
Okay, let's walk through the logic and tell me if you see a problem with it:

Let's say you capture some HDV footage, drop it in a native HDV timeline and put a transition between two clips. If everything is maintained in HDV than the transition has to be calculated as a combination of the two HDV source files, and then the transition itself is also saved as HDV. Since MPEG2 is a lossy editing format this process will introduce some degradation to the finished transition, which is now stored accordingly in your project files. For a single-pass change this shouldn't be too noticeable, but what happens if you make further modifications to the same section of the timeline? Now you're making another lossy change to your first lossy change, which could start to become a problem depending on what you're doing. Take a look at the examples on the Cineform web page and it's apparent that if you run into this problem it's potentially quite noticeable. Maybe this will only happen under certain specific conditions, but it's something you'd at least want to keep in mind when editing HDV directly.

To put this in perspective, ask yourself why anyone would ever bother to edit any video footage in "uncompressed" format if there's no possible benefit to doing so? And yet some high-end edits are done uncompressed precisely because it removes the risk of running into these sorts of compression issues. It's also part of why several current HDV editing solutions use partially decompressed editing codecs, because this allows less lossy editing calculations (if the codec is properly designed) than editing HDV directly.

And equally important, such codecs can significantly improve performance on a given computer compared to editing native HDV, consistent with the results we're seeing reported here for HDV editing in FCP5. Apple deserves credit for coming up with a functional way to edit HDV directly in FCP, but this is apparently not as efficient as solutions based on intermediate codecs. If Apple improves the quality of AIC to rival that of other intermediate HDV codecs and that yields better performance in FCP5 than native HDV, then this will all make sense for HDV work on the Mac platform. Until then, use native HDV if that's the best solution for your needs.

On the PC platform, hardly anyone is editing HDV directly because that offers no meaningful quality or workflow advantage over converting to the available intermediate codecs, which are dramatically more efficient with no visible loss of quality.
Kevin Shaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 22nd, 2005, 01:31 PM   #36
New Boot
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 24
If you were editing in HDV and rendered a rough cut, disposed of your original footage, edited your rought cut to render a fine cut, disposed of your rought cut, edited your fine cut to render a final cut, you would certainly suffer the lossy effects of HDV.

YOU ALSO WOULD NOT KNOW HOW TO USE A NLE SYSTEM.

What people are trying to say is that with FCP and direct HDV editing you will go straight from your footage to your final product. One render, one generation. Quality wise, that beats going back and forth to an intermediate codec. Speed and quality during the edit process is another question. One neither of us know the answer yet as far as FCP is concerned.
Thomas Ferlauto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 22nd, 2005, 04:26 PM   #37
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Chicoutimi, Canada
Posts: 334
Well,

Kevin seems convinced about native HDV being a bad thing. I personnaly cannot tell since I have not seen any results yet. I will evaluate when I see it and there is nothing else than speculation here. DV is also a lossy codec but NLE have evolved in taking advantage of this with no visible degradation but I remember working with premiere 5 and how much quality loss was included in every single render. Now, even multi generational compression is not that destructive. I suppose we will see soon enough if it works well or not.
__________________
Eric Bilodeau
video SFX,DOP
___________________
http://www.fictis.net
info@fictis.net
Eric Bilodeau is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 22nd, 2005, 06:08 PM   #38
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 2,488
"What people are trying to say is that with FCP and direct HDV editing you will go straight from your footage to your final product. One render, one generation. Quality wise, that beats going back and forth to an intermediate codec. "

You're not addressing the scenario I described or my comments about uncompressed editing, but assuming you can avoid any MPEG2 compression issues then direct HDV editing should work well enough. It definitely won't compete with intermediate codecs in terms of real-time performance, as is already being demonstrated by early reports for working with HDV in FCP5. But practically speaking, if FCP5 does what you need it to do with HDV on the equipment you have, then that's good. And if Apple does a good job of integrating HDV support throughout their production tools, that that'll be good too. 'Nuff said.
Kevin Shaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 23rd, 2005, 09:41 AM   #39
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 35
Mpeg 2 is already a problem to begin with, but as long as you avoid too many re-encodes, you will be ok. Right now the biggest issues with Native HDV editing is speed, and I'm not sure how Apple is dealing with this. My Hyperthreaded 3.2 ghz PC trying to edit HDV natively runs like a dog, so I'm a little concerned about performance on my dual 2.0 MAC. This is one of the fastest Macs available, so if that cant handle it, what is Apple recommending as a minimum spec to handle Native HDV.
Art Guglielmo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 25th, 2005, 07:14 AM   #40
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Shaw
Let's say you capture some HDV footage, drop it in a native HDV timeline and put a transition between two clips. If everything is maintained in HDV than the transition has to be calculated as a combination of the two HDV source files, and then the transition itself is also saved as HDV. Since MPEG2 is a lossy editing format this process will introduce some degradation to the finished transition, which is now stored accordingly in your project files. For a single-pass change this shouldn't be too noticeable, but what happens if you make further modifications to the same section of the timeline?
At that point you go to Tools - Render Manager and delete all render files, then re-render so that you're back to a first-pass render. To save yourself some time, delete all render files and re-render transitions and filters as a final step.
Murad Toor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 25th, 2005, 07:34 AM   #41
MPS Digital Studios
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Palm Beach County, Florida
Posts: 8,531
A couple of years ago, I was cutting on an uncompressed SD system. Between me and the other editor, we had over 200 gb of render files, many of which were old files of clips that were re-rendered.

And when it comes to HDV, DEFINITELY erase your render files and do a final re-render.

heath
__________________
My Final Cut Pro X blog
Heath McKnight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 25th, 2005, 08:28 AM   #42
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: DFW area, TX
Posts: 6,108
Images: 1
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Shaw
"If you really want to work effectively with the HDV format, come on over to the "dark side" and have a look around. We've got all kinds of effective HDV options including solutions which work well on $1000 laptops. As a former Mac user, I can tell you that things really aren't all that bad over here... :-)
Hey Kevin, I was on that 'dark side' for the past 20 years as a pc user until early February when I purchased my first Apple system and the Production Suite. I have found that Apple got it right by using Unix as the background of OS X. Unix is stable, and is very lean and mean as OS's go. This results in a machine that has greater performance with less processing horsepower. It took me a long time to believe this but it's true. By the way, I'm typing this message on a Compaq notebook computer that I bought recently. I have some applications that are Windows only so believe me I'm not a mac zealot. Both platforms have a place in my home. There's a reason why the other gentleman says he is struggling with HDV on a 3.2ghz machine. It's called Windows. Let me clearly state that I am NOT PLATFORM BASHING as I use both platforms to get what I need done.

Anyway, back to the HDV question. I think maybe Apple is doing a behind the scenes off-line edit like was done with tape many years ago. You do all your editing with render preview files but leave the original footage untouched. Your timeline is maybe just an EDL. This is pure speculation on my part. Maybe Murad is correct about them converting the whole stream to I frames on the fly.

As for the dynamic RT that I mentioned, I understated it a bit. It won't drop the quality much if any, until you get to 5 or 6 streams. They take it all the way to 16 streams in the demo and it reminded me of the thumbnail channel previews that some big screen tv's offered a while back.

But at the end of the day Kevin we both agree on one thing. It's sure exciting to see affordable HD editing coming to us, both in camera and NLE choices. Bring on the beauty of HD!!!

regards,

-gb-
Greg Boston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 25th, 2005, 08:09 PM   #43
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 2,488
Greg: I hesitate to comment any further on this because it tends to degenerate into pointless cross-platform comparisons, but my take is that Apple has done a marginal job of supporting HDV, and Mac users would be well advised to save up for a Panasonic P2 camera. Early reports for native HDV editing in FCP5 are exactly what I would have expected based on reports from PC users trying to do the same thing, which is that you can maybe work with one layer effectively at full quality in real time, and after that the computer has to resort to reduced-quality previews to avoid rendering. If you don't mind having to wait to see full quality output until after you render your project then that's okay, but by switching to a non-native codec with specialized hardware support you can get full-quality previews without rendering for up to 4 layers of 1080i HDV on today's (PC) computers. Your choice.
Kevin Shaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 25th, 2005, 09:18 PM   #44
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Richardson, TX
Posts: 842
Kevin,

Where are you getting these early FCP5 reports from? I'd be interested in reading them.
Bryan McCullough is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 25th, 2005, 09:38 PM   #45
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 2,488
Bryan: you just have to look back to Greg Boston's comment in this thread to see the following remark.

"The new FCP has 'dynamic' RT processing whereby it will adjust framerate and quality as you view more streams. As soon as your timeline goes back to a single stream, the quality goes back to 100%. "

I get a similar impression about performance from comments in other forums, along with concerns about observed quality problems when working in native HDV. All of this is predictable based on what we've been seeing with native HDV editing options on the PC platform, which have the same issues. In particular, this all sounds a lot like Sony Vegas, which has a similar capability to adjust playback quality during editing to avoid rendering. If you're willing to accept that compromise, you can use the Cineform codec to edit HDV on a single-processor PC laptop costing less than a good dual-processor G5 Mac. If you want to be able to see full-quality HD output from your HDV timeline directly to your HDTV, check out Canopus Edius NX.

It's fine that Apple offers native HDV support in FCP5, but this has already been done elsewhere and hence isn't all that significant. What will really make waves is FCP5 in combination with DVCProHD footage from the Panasonic P2.
Kevin Shaw is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Apple / Mac Post Production Solutions > Final Cut Suite

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:47 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network