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Old April 9th, 2008, 05:11 AM   #1
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Burundian drummers on Vimeo: HD question

Hi all,
Here's a quick video of Akayazwe, a group of Burundian drummers.
I threw it together for promotion for the group, but have much much much better footage now that i am working on! the music was recorded in my home studio and my dog is scarred for life...
http://www.vimeo.com/848327
Now, my question...
i uploaded a 'HD' version of this using vimeo's prescribed setting, but it actually came out worse quality than the SD version (dull colors, poor definition and artifacts...).
Any suggestions on settings?
i shot on an XH-A1 HDV 30f 1080i, uploaded H.264 codec at size 1280×720, bit rate 3000 kbits/sec (optimized for “download”), key frame every 30 frames, deinterlaced.
i deleted it out of embarrassment because the SD looked better!
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Old April 10th, 2008, 08:27 AM   #2
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Brian... this can be a bit of a black art... but not too much.

Some discussion on this topic that might help you can be found here: http://dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=118100

If you look just past midway through the thread you can find the settings I use and I think work well. To check out results of these settings, go here: vimeo.com/whitemountains

Deinterlacing is key, and I note that you included that in your settings. I always double check to make sure that box is not ticked just to make sure.
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Old April 10th, 2008, 10:51 AM   #3
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You might want to read through this thread also regarding all the issues that many people are reporting with Vimeo HD playback following some recent changes the've implimented. The forum on there is full of complaints at the moment. let's hope it gets sorted soon.

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=117578
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Old April 10th, 2008, 11:52 AM   #4
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What software are you using. It def doesn't look as good as it can be.
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Old April 11th, 2008, 02:12 AM   #5
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Thanks for your replies. I think i have a better handle on it. i used 5000 kb/sec and it seems better, but some shots look worse than others. perhaps my poor use of filters (3 way color corrector) made some shots too anemic. or perhaps certain shots were harder for the encoder? is this possible?
I use FCP studio2 and tried both Compressor and Quicktime conversion. i think compressor does a better job, and strangely against the common wisdom, i get better results using compressor-timeline export as opposed to the Quicktime uncompressed 10 bit movie and then into compressor workflow, especially with transitions.
I think the less than stellar quality of my footage (lots of white-out sky etc.) may have a lot to do with the poor quality (garbage in...)
i will try again with proper footage!
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Old April 11th, 2008, 04:21 AM   #6
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Here's one of my films on Vimeo in case it's useful and my response to a Vimeo enquiry about the settings I used. You can make your own mind up about the technical quality of the film.

http://www.vimeo.com/745654

By the way it plays back smoothly except at peak times when my broadband is congested. So do the other films. Can't blame Vimeo for that.

Over 1,000 people have viewed. I have had no adverse comments about the playback of the film.

quote

Thanks Kirstie and Steve for your kind comments.
I'm not very technical but here goes.
Both cameras were set at 50i and 50 frames per second (I'm in the UK, using PAL not NTSC).
I edited the films in Avid Liquid and output using their presets for Window Media.
At first I tried the HDV 1080/50i 1440 x 1080 preset. I don't know if it was my imagination, but the aspect ratio didn't look right (too portrait).
So I tried exporting it as 720/25p 1280 x 720 and this looked better.

end quote
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Old April 11th, 2008, 06:06 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Gooderick View Post
By the way it plays back smoothly except at peak times when my broadband is congested. So do the other films. Can't blame Vimeo for that.
Surely this is not quite true? As long as the video loading progress bar is well ahead of the playing mark (as it follows it) then it's not anything to do with broadband network choking with demand. True, some Vimeo HD videos play smoother once all the file has loaded but most seem to be jittery, due I suspect to CPU or RAM issues with all but the very latest PC's with 30fps Flash video at 1280x720p.

A friend of mine here has a very new MacbookPro and a fast broadband connection and is reporting the same issues with Vimeo HD that I and many others see. I'll ask him to view your Vimeo film and see if it plays without stuttering/pausing occassionally.
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Old April 11th, 2008, 08:09 AM   #8
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i wish i could contribute decisively to this discussion, but it takes me 30 minutes to load even SD video off the internet. In Burundi, the only 'broadband' is a group of fat musicians...
that said, when it is finally loaded, the HD is often jittery.
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Old April 11th, 2008, 10:09 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Wilkinson View Post
A friend of mine here has a very new MacbookPro and a fast broadband connection and is reporting the same issues with Vimeo HD that I and many others see. I'll ask him to view your Vimeo film and see if it plays without stuttering/pausing occassionally.
Hi Andy
It is quite true or I wouldn't have said it :-)
I'll be interested to see what the outcome is. I'm not saying that it never stutters at all but it's only a problem for me during peak periods.
I sometimes watch Vimeo if there's nothing on TV so it must run well enough for that to be a pleasure.
I am in production on five short films and I use Vimeo as a tool for other people to view the rough cuts. I couldn't do that if Vimeo didn't work well.
I'm using an ordinary MacBook that I bought last October and Zen Internet via a BT line.
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Old April 12th, 2008, 11:53 AM   #10
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Vimeo HD

Saw him last night but forgot to ask him!! Seeing him again Monday and will make sure I do then.

Watched your Frog video Richard. Very nice!!!! Good smooth playback also for me almost all the way through....except for where you do a quick look up to the plane...and then that "steps" across the sky.

Maybe that's a clue? In this specific Frog video, the shots are not quite as challenging (for the video technology - not the camera man!) compared to some of the stuff I sometimes shoot (highly detailed model railways and architecture) which I guess has many more hard edges and more rapid movement and so might show flaws more easily.

An example of the sort of HD stuff I do below (from Vimeo.)

http://www.vimeo.com/859136
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Old April 13th, 2008, 03:04 AM   #11
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Hi Andy
I just played your film (08.30 Sunday). It played back smoothly and stuttered once.
Thanks for link to your film. It's a good example of doing something really special for a target audience The real and modeled stuff worked very well together I thought.
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