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Old November 30th, 2003, 07:02 PM   #1
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Production Pipeline Question

Hi,

producing a direct to DVD feature in the new year and am just looking at my possible pipline options here. I'm looking to produce and retain the best possible image throughout the post process and here are my options:

Shoot DSR-500 (DVCAM), Post in DV environment. (i.e Shoot DV- editDV-Output DVD)

Shoot DXC-30 (betaSP) Post uncompressed. (Shoot BetaSP - edit Beta SP - Output to DVD)

Shoot DXC-30 (betaSP), Post in DV environment. (Shoot Beta SP, Edit DV, Output to DVD)

Shoot DSR-500, Up conv to D-Beta (Shoot DV - Edit D-beta - Output DVD)

Also ther are a number of compositing/FX shots in the film which have to be considered.

Is there a clear cut winner here? My gut tells me the uncompressed analogue way is gonna give me the best result. But if there is a negligable difference in overall quality between these options then obviously I'm gonna go the cheaper route. Has anyone had this choice in front of them and what was your decision?

Thanks for any help.

best,

DW.
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Old November 30th, 2003, 09:02 PM   #2
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The biggest effect may be on your budget.

Straight footage shot on a DSR-570 and cut DV will look great. But you will probably notice a difference in the graphics/composites compared with editing uncompressed or even 4:2:2.

As far as capture, in general it's a wash. DV has better luminance, BetaSP has better chroma. So to the human eye DV may look a little better, but if your shooting chromakey, betaSP is the way to go. You may even consider shooting DV, but when you do shoot your chromakey use the component outs on the 570 to capture directly to an uncompressed format through your edit system.
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Old November 30th, 2003, 09:12 PM   #3
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A lot of NLEs have chroma smoothing/interpolation filters to make DV as good or better than betaSP. That's according to Adam Wilt's DV FAQ: http://www.adamwilt.com/DV-FAQ-tech.html#colorSampling (scroll down to the keying section)

If you edit uncompressed your deck should add chroma interpolation/smoothing during the DV-->component conversion.
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Old December 1st, 2003, 06:58 AM   #4
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When you say edit Beta SP, do you mean linear editing? If not, how are going to edit the Beta SP?
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Old December 1st, 2003, 07:39 PM   #5
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BetaSP edits quite nicely on any number of NLEs. Anything that has component analog inputs will do nicely. Better if it runs uncompressed but even a gentle 2:1 compression will be OK.

FCP, Avid (big stuff), Media, Pinnacle's Liquid series just to mention a few.
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Old December 1st, 2003, 08:44 PM   #6
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Mike, I'm well aware of all that. But I was hoping David would respond, so that I can best answer his questions.
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Old December 1st, 2003, 10:00 PM   #7
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Whoops, sorry guys been out of the loop for a day or so.

My post options are to edit component uncompressed with a Video Toaster 3, composite and effects with Digital Fusion or Combustion - or - edit in a DV environment using a Canopus DVStorm setup and composite and effects with DF/C3.

The choice really comes down to what shoot/edit combo is gonna gimme the best image with the most flexibility throughout the post phase to the DVD master. I have the option of going full DV - DSR500/570 shoot to DVStorm post - OR throwing a BetaSP back on a D30 and recording analogue - to go component into the VT3. The camera heads are pretty much the same, 16:9 2/3 inch chips F11 @2000 lux, with a nice broadcast Fujinon or Canon on the front, we should get some nice images out of either setup. It's really what happens after the shoot that I'm trying to nail down.

My experience tells me that a 4:2:2 signal editing uncompressed is going to be more robust than a 4:2:0 signal edited DV - even though the DV can be kept (relatively) lossless. Also the extent to which you can push the image in grading with analogue seems to be a lot further than with DV/DVCAM before you get the artifacts showing up.

The difference in the price of the camera hire (500/d30) is negligable and the stock is about the same (DVCAM is a bit cheaper). I'm looking to make a final equipment decision soon and get on with the rest of my Pre-pro chores.

I appreciate everyone responding,


Thanks again,

best,

David.
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Old December 2nd, 2003, 11:52 AM   #8
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There is one more piece of info to mix into the decision.

BetaSP is known for having glitches due to tape flaws. DVCam usually overcomes tape flaws and makes them transparent.

Well, maybe one more bit. Have you run a test with both setups to see what happens? You are taking the time to make the decision, a real test wouldn't add too much to the burden and would put your mind at ease. The rental companies would probably allow you to come in and briefly shoot with the cameras for no charge.

I suppose another item is if your intended customer base can ID the differences and would care if they could.

Curiously, why aren't you considering D-9 or some other 50 Mhz digital solution?
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Old December 2nd, 2003, 12:10 PM   #9
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<<<-- Originally posted by David Warrilow :

My experience tells me that a 4:2:2 signal editing uncompressed is going to be more robust than a 4:2:0 signal edited DV - even though the DV can be kept (relatively) lossless.
best, -->>>

yes

your best bet is shoot dsr 500 edit uncompressed in a 4:2:2 enviorment output to dvd

storm edits in 4:2:0 but renders effects in 4:2:2 color space, true 4:2:2 would be an app like toaster, or fcp with an uncompressed board

you might even want to consider spending extra money for dvcpro 50 with higher quality 4:2:2 sampling video with 3.3:1 compression, like in a pana AJ-SDC915, then getting fcp with a kona board for editing, this would certainly grant you supurb quality all under 30 big ones
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Old December 2nd, 2003, 04:49 PM   #10
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hi,

thanks to everyone for replying.

"Curiously, why aren't you considering D-9 or some other 50 Mhz digital solution?"

I have looked at the D-9 gear available to me at the moment and the images it produces are great - but local rental companies have no 16:9 camera heads for their D-9 cams - so that excludes it from the equation.

The budget I'm working with is extremely frugal - putting my shooting and editing options firmly in the DVCAM/Analogue Beta catagory. I didn't want to shoot Mini-DV even though some have, with great results. I feel far more comfortable shooting with the pro eng type gear simply because the lenses are so much better. but we don't have the cash to go Hi-Def or even DVCPro 50 (which I'd love to do).So it really comes down to a decision between the setups I described.

I appreciate all the feedback, this is a great place for info.

Best,

David.
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Old December 2nd, 2003, 09:31 PM   #11
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Interesting, I didn't know that D-9 or DVCPro was so much more expensive than BetaSP to rent.
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Old December 3rd, 2003, 07:35 PM   #12
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Hi,

where I am (OZ) D9 is on a par with the DVCAM/Beta stuff about $350 per day with an average lens on the front. With a good Fujinon broadcast lens add another $150 per day to the bottom line. But as I said the D-9's I've got available locally are only 4:3 - no widescreen.

The DVCPro/BetaSX units are about $100 more per day for not too astounding an improvement in image quality. It's one of these juggling, trade-off decisions - spend the extra for a better cam - or spend less and get more time. My DP is also feeding me his preferences.

At this point i think the DSR-570 shoot with component out to the VT3 editor is going to be the path. With the lower cost of the 570 unit I can spend what little is left over on the better lens.

Thanks again for everyone's oppinion.

best

DW.
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