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Old August 9th, 2010, 03:30 PM   #1
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Converting NTSC to PAL format

Hi,
I just got back from england and I am working on a project that needs to be in PAL format. I am using adobe premiere pro CS3, VirtualDub and encore. Would it be the best the way to take my NTSC project and have VirtualDub convert it to PAL? Or, start a new Pal project in premiere and copy/past the time line into that project first? I would like to avoid redoing the project. Or, can I just take my AVI file from VirtualDub and have VirtualDub or another program convert it to PAL? If that would take less time.
This project does not have any stills so I don't need to worry about converting photos. Except for one title at the beginning and credits at the end. I also wanted a copy of the project to be in NTSC format as well. I don't have any Pal tv so is there anyway to check or know if the final output is correct? I am going to have 60 copies duplicated.

Thanks,

John Gerard
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Old August 9th, 2010, 03:54 PM   #2
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Hi John..................

Save yourself the hassle, every DVD player in PAL land can and does play NTSC (all flavours) straight out of the box, no conversion required, and they make a better job of conversion than most NLE's.

Not a lot of people appear to know that, even in PAL territory.


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Old August 9th, 2010, 06:08 PM   #3
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Ntsc to pal

I can't comment on DVD players exactly. I know my sister had to unlock her DVD player in England in order to play NTSC DVDs. But she had a cheep one. If you pay enough one can buy an unlocked version. But I can not be certain that everyone I am giving the DVD to will be able to play it. I better be on the safe side even if it means more work. Also apple computers will only allow you to switch between PAL and NTSC about 5 time before locking you in either NTSC mode or PAL mode. I can't believe Apple would do that. I know this from using my sister's iMac in England. The flatscreen all in one unit.

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Old August 9th, 2010, 08:12 PM   #4
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Er, noooo..............

If you either:

Don't include a region code at all OR set it to region 0, the player won't give a stuff about the region code at all, no unlocking required.

You're confusing the region code with NTSC/ PAL, they are not related.

An NTSC DVD with no region code will play on any NTSC or PAL player anywhere on the planet.

The Region Code is an optional extra.


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Old August 9th, 2010, 10:47 PM   #5
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Just in case you absolutely HAVE to convert to PAL, do it from scratch in a new project. You can copy your sequence and then paste it...it shouldn't be too much of a problem.

If you convert from an NTSC master, the result will be poor....480 must be raised to 576, frame rate to be changed to 25, etc.

The first process I mentioned will take as much time in the long run as the second....think about it.
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Old August 9th, 2010, 11:41 PM   #6
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A minority of PAL DVD players will have problems with NTSC DVDs eg I've got 5 DVD players and one of them (a Sony) will only output NTSC DVDs in black and white.
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Old August 10th, 2010, 03:16 AM   #7
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I agree with Paul. While all the modern combinations of DVD player and TV will be fine, there are many around that object strongly. The snag seems to be that the older TVs have problems working out what the input is. I've never quite worked it out 100% but the problem seems to be 'half-conversion'. 625 line, 25fps, but with the NTSC 3.58 colour burst, rather than the 4.43, or the other way around - the DVD player simply sends the NTSC out with a UK PAL burst - and the TV trying to do the best it can, displays a stable picture, but ignores the colour information.

I bought an NTSC only monitor and waveform monitor about 6 years ago on ebay, just so I could check exactly what was going on.

What is certain is that a real NTSC 30fps will play on most, but certainly not all, current systems.

Remember our analogue TV is coming to a close very soon, and the Government have warned TV dealers that a huge number of old analogue only kit is still out there, and they need to prepare for phone calls!

Many consumers over here still have their first generation DVD players.
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Old August 10th, 2010, 12:52 PM   #8
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NTSC to PAL conversion

I figured converting the final NTSC avi file to PAL would probable take just as long to convert I just thought I'd throw it out there. TO be safe I am going to just start a new project as suggested and copy past from the NTSC timeline. It takes about 8 hours to convert to AVI 2hours of video on my Dell computer. I tried this in England in iMovie 8 and iDVD on an 2005 iMac single core CPU.Iit took about 2 days to convert. IMovie imported the video from my Sony FX-7 HDV camera just fine. It appeared to do some kind of buffeting where the camera ran the tape at full speed. But iMovie imported it at 1/4 speed.

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Old August 17th, 2010, 06:21 PM   #9
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NTSC conversion to PAL

I just imported/copied the time line from my NTSC project to a new PAL project in Premiere Pro CS3. I then tried interpreting the footage as 25fps instead of 29.97. I see that the Audio did play at a lower pitch do to a slightly slower speed. I have changed this back to the 29.97 frame rate. I am wondering if I will have a problem when exporting the project in VirtualDub. I am just assuming that the frame rate in the export setting in premiere pro should be set to 25 fps. Is that correct? Or will VirtualDub itself or Encore convert the frame rate. I will play around with the software but I am thinking that there must be an option in one of these programs to maintain the correct pitch?

Thanks,
John Gerard

Btw: The NTSC version came out looking absolutely great considering it is still in the DVD format. My Panasonic Blu-Ray player does do upscaling. But there are no jaggies or anything so I could not be happier. The project is for my niece's classmates when she was going to an English school. She just moved back to the US. So this is why the project hast to be exported in the PAL format.
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Old August 17th, 2010, 09:28 PM   #10
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A few years back I tried every trick in the book using VDub and other work-around techniques. VDub does a fantastic job resizing (Lanczos 3 filter) but a poor job at changing the frame rate. In the end I used Procoder and I was happy with the quality.

If you don't have Procoder, you can try a conversion in After Effects, Google around for the right settings.

Good luck! And if you care about your reputation, don't listen to the "all players will play NTSC for sure" argument. Most of them will, but some will not - there is no guarantee.
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