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Old November 30th, 2009, 03:52 PM   #1
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Perhaps the most basic questions

Hello, first, forgive my poor english.

I have recently edited some shots (Sony HVR-V1U) in iMovie HD (with a Mac Pro) and copied them to a dvd.
Well, the final image is dissapointing.

My questions: wich are the elements for a good video chain, that will offer professional quality? (similar to a good audio chain, wich I understand because I record classical music: good microphones, good pre, good AD conversor, etc.)

I understand that, first, an excelent camera (and optics)

But, after that?

For example: if I use FCP instead iMovie, the final image will be better?
Is neccesary a video card like AJA, BlacMagic? What function has them for a better quality?

As I said, basic but important things to have clear.

Thanks in advance,
Daniel
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Old November 30th, 2009, 05:06 PM   #2
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For general use you dont need any special video cards like AJA or BlacMagic.

I would have thought iMovie would create fairly good quality videos when transfered to DVD. It has no where near the number of options and tools as a software package like FCP offers but it should still be good enough to create alright looking video.

Maybe one of the settings is incorrect somewhere along the post production line. How do the videos look after exporting but before transferring to DVD. If they seem fine before they go onto the disc then maybe its an incorrect setting on the DVD authoring software.
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Old November 30th, 2009, 11:18 PM   #3
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Don't forget that after looking at HD source material, SD is always going to be "disappointing"... with work you can find tune your workflow to get better results, but SD is always going to be SD.
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Old November 30th, 2009, 11:33 PM   #4
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Final Cut Studio will give you access to better tools with which to convert your video from HD to SD delivery, but HD to SD delivery in it's very nature is troublesome and actually requires both a bit of specialist knowledge and the right software to get right.

Also, it is of course 'subjective' as to what looks 'right' or the best (unless you are going for a QC).

So, like things I am sure you are familiar with in Audio, you have stumbled onto a rather large topic for discussion.

The simplest answer to your question, 'Which are the elements for a good video chain, that will offer professional quality.' is, unsurprisingly, professionals.

The more you do this stuff, on a daily basis, the more you know about what gear does what and how much you can get out of it. There are a surprising number of free tools that do amazing jobs at some things video related, and quite expensive tools that do crap jobs at some things video related, and everything in between.
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Old November 30th, 2009, 11:47 PM   #5
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A Sennheiser mic into a $100 pre does not yield a Telarc result. Similarly The V1U (which is NOT a Schoeps or a Nuemann) into iMovie, is not going to yield a professional video.

There are any number of factors here conspiring against you. but the most difficult is the HD to SD conversion. That even causes problems in the $1k editors. There are some good tools to improve that changeover, but rest assured, for the most part, they do NOT come cheaply.
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Old December 1st, 2009, 06:33 PM   #6
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If "the most difficult is the HD to SD conversion", should I think in a AJA video card, for example, for that conversion?
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Old December 1st, 2009, 06:38 PM   #7
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Uhh no thanks. I prefer to control the parameters in the conversion.
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