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Old March 23rd, 2006, 12:27 PM   #16
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Downconverting

Thanks Nate! Totally agree, so far I only tried the FCP timeline method, suggested by the FCP manual (with horrific results.) Just got my JVC baby 2 weeks ago and so far only shot tests.

Has anyone tried using the AIC (Apple Intermediary Codec) for capture and editing and then doing a downconvert using #3, the "uncompressed 10 bit compressor method (which seem to make the most sense, though for large shows it would chew up space like crazy)? How did it look? I'm trying to shoot a music vid in HDV 720/ 30P but will need to put it on an SD DVD and am trying to come up with the best method. On that note, how about going straight to MPEG2 compression with compessor for the DVD files instead of the 10 bit uncompressed intermediary stage? Has anyone done that?
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Old March 23rd, 2006, 01:16 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miklos Philips
Has anyone tried using the AIC (Apple Intermediary Codec) for capture and editing and then doing a downconvert using #3, the "uncompressed 10 bit compressor method. How did it look?
Yeah, I did that with my Static-X video for DBeta delivery. Looks great. All of that ground glass grain I had from the Mini35/AIC combo shrunk up on downconvert and looked even more like film grain. Looked great uncompressed/Digibeta, but looked much worse on MPEG2 encode for DVD. Looked even worse when it got MPEG2'd for broadcast when I saw it over DirecTV/MTV2.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Miklos Philips
I'm trying to shoot a music vid in HDV 720/ 30P but will need to put it on an SD DVD and am trying to come up with the best method. On that note, how about going straight to MPEG2 compression with compessor for the DVD files instead of the 10 bit uncompressed intermediary stage? Has anyone done that?
I've done that too, but it was before I was "paying attention". It should be just as good quality as doing the uncompressed intermediary...but so should the timeline method too!. I do know though that encoding MPEG2 from a FCP timeline with downcoverting, effects etc takes more than it should by quite a bit.

For approval DVDs on a short music video project, I'd encode from the timeline. That what I was sending Warner Bros on Static...was cutting in AIC, monitoring in HD externally, and then making SD MPEGS (@23.98!) via Compressor.
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Old March 23rd, 2006, 03:01 PM   #18
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What's the value of capturing with AIC versus native HDV 30? I don't believe the AIC has more than a rudimentary capture interface.
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Old March 27th, 2006, 10:48 PM   #19
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HDVXDV -> .m2t file -> Streamclip -> Anything!

I am far from being an expert on this topic.
However, I use HDVXDV for log and capture of
720 24p footage from the HD100U or BRHD50 Deck.

The result are .m2t files.
I then use Streamclip (It's Free!) (http://www.squared5.com/)
I open my .m2t file in Streamclip. I goto Edit -> Fix Timecode Breaks.

This is a critical step that HDVXDV does not do and the reason
audio gets out of sync using HDVXDV for conversion.

I goto File -> Export To Quicktime
For Compression Select :Apple DVCPRO HD 720p
Quality 100%
Make sure: Interlaced Scaling & Reinterlaced Chroma are NOT CHECKED.
Enter: 24 into the frame rate box/field.
Make sure 1280x720 (HDTV 720p) is selected/.
Then select make movie.

I then make sure my FCP settings are DVCPRO HD 720 24p
in easy setup menu.
Import that clips in and can do a great multicam HD edit.

Streamclip does beautiful downconversions to SD/DV/DVCPRO.

Is there a more efficent method out there?

So, please do some experiments and any further feedback on this
would be great. Hope this helped someone out there.
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Old March 28th, 2006, 12:28 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Giberti
What's the value of capturing with AIC versus native HDV 30? I don't believe the AIC has more than a rudimentary capture interface.
There's a cheat where you can digitize 720p24 via AIC in Final Cut if you don't need your audio.

That's the only value I know.
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Old March 28th, 2006, 12:31 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Stiff
Streamclip does beautiful downconversions to SD/DV/DVCPRO.

Is there a more efficent method out there?

So, please do some experiments and any further feedback on this
would be great. Hope this helped someone out there.
I agree. Streamclip does use good math for downconversions if you're coming from m2t. My original post was more about how there are drastic differences within the FCP suite when it comes to quality.
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Old March 28th, 2006, 10:27 AM   #22
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Hey Nate.

Great stuff as usual, very useful to know the difference in quality with all the different conversion methods. BTW, I found the "Uncompressed 10-bit" codec in Windows version too (http://www.blackmagicdesign.com) and it's great if you need to exchange clips between Mac and Windows.

Nate, I replied to your email of the 18th, I don't know if you saw it, maybe it got trapped by the anti-spam filter?

Thanks again.
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Old September 1st, 2007, 11:57 PM   #23
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i know it's been a while since this thread was active, but i wanted to give it a bump because it was so useful. hey nate (if you're still reading this), how much "Sharpen Edge" do you suggest? thanks again!
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Old September 6th, 2007, 10:03 PM   #24
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I just read this about the methods for down conversion of JVC HDV footage - (topic save)

I am cutting a show that is in a HDV timeline in FCPro 2. Yet some of my footage is NTSC stock archives in 4:3. The show will be delivered in 4:3 letter box NTSC.

So, I am left with a dilemma. How do I down convert all the HDV footage, yet retain the full quality of the NTSC archives? Going out to compressor will result in a long clip with no way for me to replace the NTSC content shot by shot when placed in the NTSC sequence.

My plan is to copy paste the show into an NTSC uncompressed 10-bit sequence and then replace all the NTSC archives at 100% scale with letter box crops. But from what I read this method will result in poor down conversion of the HDV.

Is there any way to media manage the sequence so all the HDV is rendered to uncompressed 10-bit letterbox clips?
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Old October 4th, 2007, 07:16 PM   #25
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I ended up down converting the HDV footage to 10-bit uncompressed within FCPro. The results are superb. (gasp) But I used Media Manager to recompress the sequence to 10-bit. By using the Custom sequence settings in Media Manager you do have some control over the recompress, but no filters like Compressor. OTOH, you can continue to edit the shots. I had an hour long doc here. Plus I was able to delete the rest of the material not used.

The downconverted recompressed letterbox looks great and I eliminated the terrible aliasing and flickering in the details of the HDV footage when using a FCPro sequence downconvert. Looks much more film like. This show will get a national audience so, we'll see how people react. Lot's of beautiful footage from Italy and Poland. All shot 720p30 to Firestore as HDV. Edited natively in HDV to fine cut then recompressed to NTSC for mastering to Digibeta.

Dave Beaty
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Old November 5th, 2007, 01:11 AM   #26
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just came to same conclusions as you did. however that doesn't mean i'm happy with the results. I'm ready to download the trial version of adobe suite and give it a watermarked whirl. I've seen good things from adobe premier and dvd burning lately... but to be fair, I havn't checked out FCS 2 yet. For me, it just looks way too compressed and artifacti. yes, compressor, 2 pass best.. 6,7 and 7,7 bit max etc.. nothing close to a store bought DVD, and I think we should be able to get close the quality of one... not obviously home done.
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Old November 6th, 2007, 02:20 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Humphrey View Post
just came to same conclusions as you did. however that doesn't mean i'm happy with the results. I'm ready to download the trial version of adobe suite and give it a watermarked whirl. I've seen good things from adobe premier and dvd burning lately... but to be fair, I havn't checked out FCS 2 yet. For me, it just looks way too compressed and artifacti. yes, compressor, 2 pass best.. 6,7 and 7,7 bit max etc.. nothing close to a store bought DVD, and I think we should be able to get close the quality of one... not obviously home done.
OK, I'm an idiot... I went to film school before DVD's were invented so i never knew some basic info about DVD encoding. It's as basic as in America the steering wheel in on the left hand side of the car.. but I never knew it.. here it is... if you want EXCELLENT SD DVD.... SHOOT 24P. WHY? DVD is 59.97 interlaced frames. Progressive scan DVD players only has progressive LIKE feature when the source material is 24p, encoded at 23.97 frame rate. the two IDENTICAL 23.97 frames from the original 24p is recombined in the DVD player then sent to the HD-TV set. so for SD DVD, shoot 24p HD/SD for best results...
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Old March 24th, 2008, 07:24 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Beaty View Post
I ended up down converting the HDV footage to 10-bit uncompressed within FCPro. The results are superb. (gasp) But I used Media Manager to recompress the sequence to 10-bit. By using the Custom sequence settings in Media Manager you do have some control over the recompress, but no filters like Compressor. OTOH, you can continue to edit the shots. I had an hour long doc here. Plus I was able to delete the rest of the material not used.

The downconverted recompressed letterbox looks great and I eliminated the terrible aliasing and flickering in the details of the HDV footage when using a FCPro sequence downconvert. Looks much more film like. This show will get a national audience so, we'll see how people react. Lot's of beautiful footage from Italy and Poland. All shot 720p30 to Firestore as HDV. Edited natively in HDV to fine cut then recompressed to NTSC for mastering to Digibeta.

Dave Beaty
Hi Dave, did you find that with your workflow the results were better than using regular Compressor? Would you mind posting the exact workflow? Much appreciated. Thanks
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Old March 25th, 2008, 11:10 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paolo Ciccone View Post
BTW, I found the "Uncompressed 10-bit" codec in Windows version too (http://www.blackmagicdesign.com) and it's great if you need to exchange clips between Mac and Windows.
It's actually:

http://www.blackmagic-design.com/support/software/

Gotta have a - in between the blackmagic and design or you go to a "sublime" website...
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