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Old September 25th, 2007, 09:14 PM   #1
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soft focus from hdv to dv

I have heard and read about shooting in HDV even if your final product will be DV. I have been recording in HDV but have yet to see a decent (sharp) image when I convert to DV. It's almost as if I shot slightly out of focus. I always have to add the sharpen filter (PPro2).
The HDV image is gorgeous and in focus. What is the best way to go from HDV to DV so that I can maintain some sharpness?
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Old September 26th, 2007, 05:29 AM   #2
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Hi Bill, what did you use at the moment to go from HDV to DV?
Maybe that's a better start-off since tools are available on PC and MAC.
Myself I use PC PPro 2.0 in combination with Cineform Prospect.
Very good results both in Premiere Pro as the HDlink software from Cineform to convert the files.
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Old September 26th, 2007, 09:04 AM   #3
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The test I made using my Vegas 7.0e rendering HDV 24p and 30p to DV 24p and 60i didn`t show any sharpness problem.
Ron
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Old September 26th, 2007, 07:20 PM   #4
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soft focus

I also use PPro 2 with Cineform. I edit the clips and then export movie. I then import the movie (avi.) into a widescreen dv timeline and resize the frame. Is this the correct way?
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Old September 26th, 2007, 07:22 PM   #5
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have you tried converting to uncompressed 8 bit SD first, then to DV? Thats what my editor friend did in the past on Final Cut to create a nice cleam image so maybe theres a similar process on your app? (sorry, I'm a bit vague about it, but I'm sure theres a post somewhere on this site)
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Old September 27th, 2007, 01:39 PM   #6
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There are a lot of different theories/approaches/processes floating around on correcting poor HDV-to-DV/DVD conversion, resulting in different/milkier colours, poor contrast, apparent softness, and that sort of thing.

This is something I'm working with right now, so I've consolidated a few items here. I'd be interested in feedback on them.

1. Resizing. Not all applications/resizers are the same. VirtualDub seems to do a fair enough job, as does AE (particularly with the help of a dedicated plugin), but others (like Premiere, the editor I use) do a poorer job right off the timeline. It's worth investigating different resizing options and results.

2. Gamma and black level. This is one that seems particularly irritating, in that different combinations of codec and display target can vary wildly. A too-high gamma or black level will reduce the sharpness of your image and make it seem softer and low-contrast. A little work will help you approximate the adjustment that will turn your source material into similar-looking output, but it has the unfortunate effect of throwing away some of the range of the source. This is something I'm particularly interested in other people's experiences with.

3. Colour. Depending on what your finishing environment is, colour may look a lot better before output to DVD (and inherent transcoding to 4:1:1). For instance, if you're doing 16-bit or 32-bit colour correction in After Effects and outputting to 16-bit TIFF sequences, encoding to DV/DVD is going to sacrifice a lot of that colour resolution on the altar of 4:1:1. I'm curious about how professional encoding (of beautifully coloured film sources, for instance) maintains such rich colour.

4. 709-vs.-601. Again, something there seems to be a lot of misinformation about, or at least confusion. It seems that some converters may internally apply a 709-to-601 colorspace conversion when going from HDV to DV(D), while others don't. Does anyone practice explicitly doing this (in, for example, AE or ProCoder, which provide this specific capability)?
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Old September 28th, 2007, 12:02 AM   #7
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That is really strange. You should be getting a cleaner picture or at least equal to that of footage shot in DV mode.

Something is definately up with your software settings.

I'm using Final Cut Studio.

Just as an example, there is a fast way, and a long way of doing things. The longer way usually leads to higher quality results.

Are you doing a 2-pass encode at 6-7Mbps?
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