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General HD (720 / 1080) Acquisition
Topics about HD production.

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Old February 8th, 2006, 12:22 PM   #1
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Just call me Rip Van Winkle!

Good people,
Been shooting with an XL-1, editing in FCP, and delivering DVDs in DVD Studio Pro for several years now. I've not been paying very close attention to the technological revolution that is upon us. I've read some of the lively exchanges here about the what and when and why of HD, and personally, I would love an H1 just so my little movies would look better to me, alone! I also understand the argument of now vs. later in order to add shelf life to footage. My question is a practical one: Until my customers have HDDVD players, I will be downconverting my HDV stuff to SD, yes? Now, please speak slowly so I can understand this, because I, ya know, just woke up: Will my HDV to SD downconverted delivery look better than my SD stuff does now? And if so, how much better? (It's time for budget planning, and I want to have some ammunition for the bean counters) Thanks, and forgive my ignorance.
- Jim
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Old February 8th, 2006, 11:34 PM   #2
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I have posted about this a few times in the last few days, so forgive me if you already read it from me, but I have been using some footage I shot in HDV over the last week in a standard-def (SD) Final Cut 5 project... Mind you, transferred in at HDV res, not down-converted to SD by the camera. I have been working on a 4-minute presentation video. I've been using some shots interspersed with graphics and titles, and they look cool - the quality is great, and I've been pulling some stunts that you could only do in telecine transfers and still maintain quality - pushing in on some areas of the frame to crop the image to what I need, panning across a 16:9 shot like you would a photograph... cool tweaky little things you see in commercials, but look pretty bad when you try it with regular DV shots.

I mentioned the '4-minute' part because each time I mess with this stuff or drag an HDV clip into the SD project, I have to let FCP render it on the timeline before I can play it, the real-time effects don't apply to trans-codec action... Maybe 10-15 seconds for each little 3-4 second clip, depending on what I was doing, panning, speed change, whatever. Tolerable in my case since the footage was only a part of a short presentation, mixed with graphics and titles, all from After Effects.

So in other words, using the HD-encoded clips in a DV SD project may not really be the best or fastest way to work on a narrative, interview, or edit-intensive project. In that case you might want to transfer your footage in as SD but keep in on the shelf at HD for later, if you need it.

I've been very happy, looks cool, and the clients were none the wiser, as usual. No need to bother them with the tech-specs.
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Old February 9th, 2006, 01:36 AM   #3
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Edit your project in a HDV timeline first and in the end, when you're finished, drag and drop the sequence in a SD/DV timeline. This avoids the scale down rendering what Bill's mentioning.
Vincent Rozenberg is offline   Reply

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