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Old September 24th, 2003, 08:59 AM   #1
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Need some clarifications

Hi everyone,

My buddy, big into HD and a working DP, and I are talking about doing a project together. But we need some clarifications.

It seems we can't actually get the
720HD images out of the camera without a D-VHS VTR. Is this right? As in, to look at it on an HDTV (CRT), we need to plug it in through a D-VHS VTR, right?

And Steve, we can't go back to HDV (via the camera or the D-VHS) without another plug-in, right? Is it Heuris?

Anyone having success with Steve Mullen's plug-in and manual?

Thanks,

heath
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Old September 24th, 2003, 09:56 AM   #2
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Re: Need some clarifications

<<<-- Originally posted by Heath McKnight : Hi everyone,It seems we can't actually get the
720HD images out of the camera without a D-VHS VTR. Is this right? As in, to look at it on an HDTV (CRT), we need to plug it in through a D-VHS VTR, right?-->>>

You can play 720P straight out of the camera via analog Y,Pr,Pb cables.

<<<--And Steve, we can't go back to HDV (via the camera or the D-VHS) without another plug-in, right? Is it Heuris?-->>>

I believe that is the case right now for the Mac, although Steve knows much more about this. On PC, adding my pitch here, Aspect HD solves the complete production workflow, including exports back to the camera and D-VHS.
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Old September 24th, 2003, 10:35 AM   #3
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David is right, PC has a complete workflow going on. On Mac, it is still not possible to get the footage back directly on camera but it works with a DVHS deck. But getting the footage in computer (Mac) is no problem at all using a firewire cable and firewireSDK 17 from apple, getting the original (untouched) footage back on camera is also no problem on Mac, it is the recompression witch does not permit to get back on camera, the originals go back just fine. It is a question of compression, it should be solved soon, probably by Apple themselves, there is a important amount of people in this buisness working on Mac so it is a question of months.
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Old September 24th, 2003, 11:46 AM   #4
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David's right about output from the camcorder.

4HDV does not yet support FCP back to D-CHS or HDV camcorder. But, it may in the next week. :)

And Heuris ($5000) doesn't yet support the camcorder, only D-VHS.

So that means you should look at Aspect HD, because it works NOW.

However, to get to HDCAM or DVCPRO100 you'll need an HD analog component to SDI-HD converter. Not cheap!

In FCP it's easier IF you have a Mac with an HD board ($10,000). But this hasn't neen done yet.
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Old September 24th, 2003, 01:40 PM   #5
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Thanks everyone. What about Aspect HD, Steve? Can you provide a link?

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Old September 24th, 2003, 02:00 PM   #6
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About the HD board for mac, prices have dropped, some boards are now about 2000$usd but you still need converters to input the HD1 or HD10.
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Old September 24th, 2003, 02:08 PM   #7
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Great! Time to spend MORE money to use this camera! Christ!

I have yet to make one dollar with it! (I'm helping a friend out with a wedding Friday night, but that's in DV mode. Should've kept my XL-1 and waited for the world to catch up with the HDV.)

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Old September 24th, 2003, 02:33 PM   #8
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OK. So I bit the bullet and decided to go ahead and register to this thing so I could ask a few questions myself...

I am a trained and experienced D.I.T. I work as a Director of Photography specializing in High Definition and Standard Definition Digital acquisition. I am a professional who has been working full time in the film industry for the last six years. As a Director of Photography I have worked with the Sony HDW-F900 HDCAM rig in both the standard Sony and Panavision versions. As well as the Panasonic HDC-27F DVCPRO-HD rig. I also have extensive experience in PAL acquisition for D5 HD upconversion. So my understanding of High Definition and up-cross-downconversion is solid.

I have not yet worked with this new camera. And to be honest I am skeptical of its ability to perform on a level that would satisfy my expectations. However, I am very interested in learning about what it can and cannot do. I have been reading through the operation manual that I received from JVC. And I have been discussing the work flow possibilities with my business partner and friend Chris who is currently working with the camera. Chris is also an experienced D.I.T. (Local 600) and working Director of Photography who specializes in High Definition acquisition as well as an owner/operator of the Sony HDW-F900.

At issue, is how the 720/30P High Definition recording gets out of the camera, how it gets cut, how it gets mastered following post, and how it is delivered to the Standard Definition consumer television monitor.

I have not had the opportunity to fully immerse myself in the world of plug in's and workarounds that seem to floating around the net in abundance regarding this new format and camera. So any answer that may lie in such is still unknown to me.

The operation manual seems to (for lack of a better way of putting it) tap dance or double talk its way around how to get the 720 HD signal out of the camera. Or more appropriately put, off the tape.

Steve, you state that David is correct about "output from the camercorder". But playback of the recording, and actually being able to view the full resolution 720 HD recording, seem to be two completely seperate things.

According to the manual:

The manual states on page 39 that when recording in the 720 HD mode, that the signals are output in 480P only.

1. Does this mean that you cannot view the full resolution of the 720 HD recording for monitoring purposes?

2. Is this 480P signal a true downconverted signal of the actual full resolution 720 HD recording?

The manual also states on page 39 that you can set the camera to "720 to 1080" in playback mode and it "converts to 1080i".

3. Does this mean that it upconverts the 720/30P HD signal to a 1080/60i HD signal compatible with any system that recognizes 1080/60i HD? In other words, could this be sent to my HDW-F500 HDCAM VTR and comparable D5 VTR and recorded as a straight up full resolution 1080/60i HD recording?

4. Or, does this mean that the camera merely converts the signal to be compatible with a consumer HDTV home viewing set?

According to Chris, the camera uses a proprietary encoding to compress the 720 HD information "on top of" the MPEG2 recording. Thus, without JVC's proprietary software, or a D-VHS VTR, you can't view the full resolution 720 HD recording. Using JVC proprietary software, you can decode the 720 HD material in a computer through a Firewire capture. Or using a D-VHS VTR, you can record the full resolution 720 HD recording onto 1080 D-VHS via the Firewire connection. Is this correct?


Steve, you mention "4HDV". I am under the impression that this is a plug in that you authored to handle the full resolution 720 HD recording. Is this correct?

You also state that 4HDV "does not yet support FCP support back to D-VHS or HDV camcorder", and "And Heuris ($5000) doesn't yet support the camcorder, only D-VHS". However, your website selling the 4HDV plug in has a chapter list under "4HDV OS X HDV Production Guide" that states:

"Chapter 10: Export an MPEG-2 Movie from FCP Using a Heuris Encoder"
"Chapter 11: Export an Uncompressed HD Movie from FCP"

- Export to what or where?

It also states:

"Chapter 13: Create and Burn an NTSC DVD from an Uncompressed HD Movie"

- Does this mean that you can actually export the full resolution 720 HD material to a donwconverted NTSC MPEG2 file that can be burned onto a DVD-R using a Superdrive and played back on any NTSC Standard Definition monitor via a standard DVD player?

Also, you state that 4HDV "does not yet support FCP back to D-VHS or HDV camcorder. But, it may in the next week".

- It may in the next week? Will it, or won't it? Is this something you are working on?

Your website states that you "may" need to use Heuris. Does this mean we do or don't need Heuris to get the 720 HD recording onto D-VHS?

All of this begs the next part of the question:

If you are successful at getting the full resolution 720 HD recording out of the camera and into a NLE, how do monitor it, and get it back out? Back out to HD and back out to downconverted SD?


I am only attempting to fully understand how I can harness the 720 HD cability of this camera. Any insight and clarification from someone who is experienced in the workflow of High Definition and experienced with said workflow with this new HDV format camera would be helpful.

Thank you.
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Old September 24th, 2003, 02:49 PM   #9
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Most of you questions can be summed up with this one piece of information:

The JVC HDV cameras use standard MPEG2- transport streams over IEEE1394. These TS files can be captured and stored on a Mac or PC, then decoded using off the shelf components. The decoded data is a native 720p30 (29.97) i.e. 1280x720 pixels. This uncompressed can be placed in an format necessary for post production work. This HD data can be upconverted (1080i) or downconverted (SD 16x9 anamorphic DVD) as needed. There is nothing magically here, the only trick is making tools that existed before HDV (FCP, Premiere, etc.) behave correctly with the new data.
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Old September 24th, 2003, 02:56 PM   #10
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Great questions, Jon, probably much more thorough than my original questions. I'm just tired of having to spend MORE money (up to $5000, I may as well buy an HD10 AND an HD1) to get this thing to work.

My upcoming short short short film should help us all learn the camera, as I'll post up results. Not because of the camera's audio, but I've decided not to have any dialogue. If you want to hear how awful it is, I'll gladly try and figure out how (and where) to post some DV clips I shot for my DVD documentary. Anyone able to help me with that?

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Old September 24th, 2003, 02:59 PM   #11
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<<<-- Originally posted by David Newman : Most of you questions can be summed up with this one piece of information:

The JVC HDV cameras use standard MPEG2- transport streams over IEEE1394. These TS files can be captured and stored on a Mac or PC, then decoded using off the shelf components. The decoded data is a native 720p30 (29.97) i.e. 1280x720 pixels. This uncompressed can be placed in an format necessary for post production work. This HD data can be upconverted (1080i) or downconverted (SD 16x9 anamorphic DVD) as needed. There is nothing magically here, the only trick is making tools that existed before HDV (FCP, Premiere, etc.) behave correctly with the new data. -->>>

Two more questions from el heatho:

1. Will we be able to see 720p30 on an HDTV (CRT) as we set up and record shots?

2. Does HDV still require that QuickTime plug-in and that one thing from Apple, can't remember the name. SDK17??

Thanks,

heath
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Old September 24th, 2003, 03:06 PM   #12
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<<<-- Originally posted by Heath McKnight :
Two more questions from el heatho:

1. Will we be able to see 720p30 on an HDTV (CRT) as we set up and record shots? -->>>

No. 480p/i are apparently the only passthru modes during capture -- you can out use progressive or interlaced SD monitor on set. Once data is on tape all your output modes are available.

<<<--2. Does HDV still require that QuickTime plug-in and that one thing from Apple, can't remember the name. SDK17?? -->>>

I not pushing a Mac solution, so I don't know those requirements. We don't use QuickTime under Aspect HD.

--David.
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Old September 24th, 2003, 03:13 PM   #13
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Thanks. The Apple SDK17 and Quicktime mpeg2 encoder working with the HDV is a question for Steve Mullen.

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Old September 24th, 2003, 03:16 PM   #14
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>>Most of you questions can be summed up with this one piece of information<<

Sums up the question I guess. But provides no answers.

>>The JVC HDV cameras use standard MPEG2- transport streams over IEEE1394.<<

Like I said, I've read the manual.

>>These TS files can be captured and stored on a Mac or PC, then decoded using off the shelf components.<<

Which off the shelf components?

>>The decoded data is a native 720p30 (29.97) i.e. 1280x720 pixels.<<

Like I said, I read the manual.

>>This uncompressed can be placed in an format necessary for post production work.<<

OK. How?

>>This HD data can be upconverted (1080i) or downconverted (SD 16x9 anamorphic DVD) as needed.<<

OK. How?

>>There is nothing magically here, the only trick is making tools that existed before HDV (FCP, Premiere, etc.) behave correctly with the new data.<<

Indeed. Which is why I'm asking the questions above. The only magic would be if HDV did actually work with todays' existing components without requiring a dozen work arounds.

Again, I'm looking for very straight forward answers to my straight forward questions. Nothing else please.

Thank you.
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Old September 24th, 2003, 03:21 PM   #15
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Jon and Heath,

Unfortunately, you cannot monitor in full HD resolution while recording or setting up. It is true that it looks like it is downconverted to 480p, because definition still is very good. The only way to look at your footage in 720p is to play it back... There is no SDI either. For the other question, yes, it upconverts in true 180/60i to the component HD output so you could send it to another recorder, but only in playback, not in recording. The output signal is not some sort of proprietary signal that cannot be read (from the component out), it is a 720/60p, 1080/60i or 480 either P or i signal that can be sent to a monitor or a deck with analog input capabilities. From firewire, it is a mpeg2 stream that has to be decoded or interpreted using the right hardware/software.

Capturing HDV via firewire on a Mac requires firewireSDK17 until the arrival of Panther witch should have the components installed. I don't know if the capture utilities will be there though, but soon enough FCP will support it.

Jon, if you have access to a HD editing suite that can manage component HD input (YPbPr), you can output from the camera and edit like with any other 720p or 1080i source. Then transfer to whatever format suits you. Ex: output in upconverted 1080i, edit and get the final edit back to a 1080i compatible VTR that can connect to your edit suite, in SDI or component depending on your system.
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