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Old January 19th, 2013, 04:31 PM   #1
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Using old tape footage on timeline with newer formats

I have been asked to make a "love story" style video for a couple who is getting married in a few months. They have tapes (digital 8 and mini DV) dating back to around 2002. So, this footage is 720x480, 30fps, and 4:3 aspect. My question is, how can I best use that along with more recently shot HD 16:9 footage on the same timeline in FCP7 ? I realize the quality will not be the same... but can I convert the old tape footage to the wide screen aspect ratio with a minimum of loss? Help me out here. Please. :)
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Old January 19th, 2013, 04:51 PM   #2
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Re: Using old tape footage on timeline with newer formats

Easiest is to just drop the old footage into the HD timeline and let FCP do the job. It will probably be fine. If you want to try for a higher quality up-convert use Compressor. There are a number of techniques to get a better conversion which you can find with a Google search. Whether it will really visibly improve the footage depends on the footage. The question is if you will be happy with pillar-boxed footage. Some people can't stand that in a 16:9 program so they zoom into the footage so it will fill the screen. Here is where the up convert gets tricky. Some footage will really look bad, other scenes will be soft but good. Here is where you might find that research into using Compressor useful. Personally I don't care about pillar-boxing so I would leave the footage alone.
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Old January 19th, 2013, 05:51 PM   #3
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Re: Using old tape footage on timeline with newer formats

To accenuate the then and now aspect, leave the 4:3 as is, even lightly colour grade it with sepia tones.

If the 4:3 sound is bad, even voices, mute it and cover it with their favourite music. Add location and date subtitles, nostalgia sells.

Cheers.
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Old January 21st, 2013, 12:00 AM   #4
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Re: Using old tape footage on timeline with newer formats

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Creighton View Post
My question is, how can I best use that along with more recently shot HD 16:9 footage on the same timeline in FCP7?
Are you mastering a DVD or bluray?
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Old January 21st, 2013, 03:11 PM   #5
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Re: Using old tape footage on timeline with newer formats

Eric: DVD and online (Vimeo). I guess my biggest concern is converting the 4:3 footage to 16:9
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Old January 22nd, 2013, 02:44 AM   #6
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Re: Using old tape footage on timeline with newer formats

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Originally Posted by Ben Creighton View Post
Eric: DVD and online (Vimeo). I guess my biggest concern is converting the 4:3 footage to 16:9
One technique is to stretch the 4:3 image in such a way that the center of the image is not distorted but the edges still fill out the 16:9 frame. This can work well if the camera is relatively stationary and the subject stays in the center of the frame. The main advantage is there is no loss of resolution.

http://www.hv20.com/showthread.php?4...deo-conversion

Another technique is to crop the top and bottom off the image to make it 16:9 and then rescale it. In order minimize apparent resolution loss, something like Faroudja DCDi should be used for the deinterlacing step needed to rescale interlaced footage. No NLE that I'm aware of uses DCDi but the eedit and nnedi plugins for avisynth are similar.

http://web.missouri.edu/~kes25c/

Avisynth can be used to perform either of the above conversions using the Wine emulator on OS/X. How much time do you have and how important is it to get the best results?

Last edited by Eric Olson; January 22nd, 2013 at 11:11 AM. Reason: Added hyperlinks.
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