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For all HD formats including HDV, HDCAM, DVCPRO HD and others.


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Old October 4th, 2006, 01:13 AM   #1
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Post-houses In Los Angeles

Anyone have any experience with post-houses; service, discounts, etc....particularly in going from HDV to HDCAM and color correcting.....Thanks.
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Old October 4th, 2006, 01:58 AM   #2
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Sure. I do. What do you want to know?
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Old October 4th, 2006, 01:26 PM   #3
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The lowest rates with the best quality from HDV to HDCAM transfer, color correction, and layback costs.

Thanks
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Old October 4th, 2006, 01:44 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hayk Paul
The lowest rates with the best quality
Okay, I'll be frank. You're kind of going about this the wrong way. It's kind of clear by the nature of and how you asked your question that you've never worked with one before. It's a mistake to choose a place based on lowest rates and "best quality", that's ignoring the fact that it's impossible to quantify either.

Here's what I suggest: You need to find a place that is okay with holding your hand through whatever it is that you're trying to do, and willing to help you out on rates even though they don't know you. You're right to ask for help, because most places in town with HDCAM decks don't swing that way.

With all that said, start out at The DR Group. They were kind of my "starter" place and helped me learn how to get projects done when I had to start delivering projects on formats like Digibeta and DVCPRO HD.

I apologize for sounding short, but the biggest thing you need now is guidance (from a post place that knows what they're doing). If you pick up the phone and say what you did above to a sales rep, they'll not really want to deal with you. I'm trying to save you that heartache.

(p.s. all places will quote you about the same rates anyway. $200-$300 an hour in any operation that requires an HDCAM deck.)
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Old October 4th, 2006, 01:56 PM   #5
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I'm from London, not LA, but I used to be a senior editor/partner in a post house and I can tell you very confidently that Nate is 100% right. We used to get questions like this over the phone pretty much every day and we would usually run a mile!!! Back then it was DV-based editors wanting their edit 'on Digi and colour corrected' on a very small budget.

Are you saying you want to transfer your finished edit from a master you've made on your system and laid off to HDV to HDCAM or do you actually want to conform and finish your edit in a high-end system for output to HDCAM according to a particular broadcaster's spec? If it's the latter, my advice would be to find the friendliest place with a good reputation and a great set of credits. These places invariably charge by the hour for finishing so don't go with the lowest rate because the less competent guys usually take much longer to do what the great guys do without breaking a sweat. Higher rates actually quite often reflect higher competence - but that's not always the case, of course. My advice would be to contact established production companies with experience mastering premium shows and get some recommendations. Also, the high-end boutique places are often owner-operated so you can get some loving kindness thrown in with a good deal. Once you've found a great place, find out exactly what materials they want from you, work backwards and follow their instructions to the letter. They will have done it a million times so you should trust them, even if it sounds like madness. If you follow their guidance it'll be smoother, faster and cheaper.

Remember - low hourly rates often mean bigger bills and lots of frustration!
Sorry I can't help with specific places in LA!
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Old October 4th, 2006, 03:36 PM   #6
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Hayk, here's what I do; I edit anything from DV, to DVCPRO HD, to XDCAM HD at home and output either at home renting decks, or I take a finished Quicktime on a hard drive to a place like DR Group or Matchframe.

I have a Blackmagic card at home that allows me to monitor HD properly. It also has the side benefit of being bale to check if a particular format/timeline is going to play out of HD-SDI to a deck correctly.

Say I've got a JVC 720p24 project. I edit at home in FCP, in native codec. Blackmagic card and Kona will both play this timeline out, and add pulldown to bring it up to either 720p60, or 1080i60. Then I either rent a deck to output, OR I render out a complete finished uncompressed QT of the program to a hd, then take it to another Final Cut place with decks (like DR).

If you're going to want to take it somewhere else for color or output, you're probably going to need to give them an uncompressed Quicktime. If they have a DeVinci suite, you're going to output to HDCAM first. DR Group has a Final Touch, so you can give them an uncompressed QT first, then color, THEN output to HDCAM.

And if you're working in something besides FCP or Avid, then good luck on all of this, because nobody in LA would ever know if your rendered outputs would load up into their systems. And they sure as heck don't have anything but Avid or FCP feeding the decks, unless they're doing their own end-to-end production in house and like something different.
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Old October 4th, 2006, 09:21 PM   #7
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Thanks a lot Nate and Anthony. I'm so glad this place exits, helping avoid mistakes such as the one I made. Now I have few more questions...

What would difference (price and quality) be if I were to finish my edit on HDCAM, by that do you mean that I conform all my logged&captures footage that I will be using to edit? Basically I want to get a final edit on FCP an then have that color corrected and transferred to HDCAM so I think that is not just 'outputting' to HDCAM right?

Now here's what my project is; a feature 70-90min, on JVC110u 720/24p, I can't finish on HDV because there is no format, and I want to be able to send it to festivels with the best possible quality (of course that would be a film-out but I don't have that much $$) within my budget (6000 for post). Then with the HDCAM master, which is the best bang for my amount of buck (right?) I can start the festivel circuit, with DigiBeta or whatever they need.

Again please tell me if I'm still looking at this the wrong way. Thanks guys.
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Old October 4th, 2006, 09:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hayk Paul
What would difference (price and quality) be if I were to finish my edit on HDCAM, by that do you mean that I conform all my logged&captures footage that I will be using to edit? Basically I want to get a final edit on FCP an then have that color corrected and transferred to HDCAM so I think that is not just 'outputting' to HDCAM right?
I can't follow what you're asking in the first part. Now that I know what you're editing with, here's an overview of your plan:

1-Edit native HDV in Final Cut at home.

2-Take project on FW drive to Dr Group for HDCAM output. Plan on this costing $200/hr, and you should count on it taking AT LEAST twice the running length of your program. When talking about a one hour program to HDCAM, I always budget 2-3 thousand.

3-Take resulting HDCAM to color facility. Plan on at least $300/hr, and spending 2 to 3 eight hour days color correcting...and that's for quick and dirty.
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