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Old March 14th, 2011, 02:05 PM   #1
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Playing tricks with HD for hobby application?

I wonder if it is reasonable to play games with HD.

Here's what I am thinking. (This idea is in the context of an orchestra concert.) Put an HD camcorder (aimed so as to capture the whole orchestra) on a tripod. Use a second camcorder (need be only SD, I suppose) as mobile platform to move around for different shots and get close-ups.

Downscale the HD to SD in the finished product. But, use the HD for wide shots, and to "zoom in" (using the extra HD resolution to enable a virtual zoom) as desired. Ideally, the shots would be preplanned (from studying the score), and "zooming" from the HD would be coordinated with the second camera "roving" shots.

Strictly for hobby/amateur application.

I think I may have read something like this on this very forum a year or two ago, but can't remember any details, and don't know how to search for the topic.

I am strictly a noob, and, after (soon) purchase of HD camcorder will have it and my existing DV camcorder. I am wondering if it is reasonable to be just one person, and try to fake a multishot video along the lines I described? I'd use the audio from the HD (or record separately with digital recorder [I can do the sync]).

DG

Edit: Let me expand on "zooming in" with the HD, just to be clear what I mean. I mean "zooming in" in post-- to produce an effect like in Ken Burns documentaries, but with video rather than just a still. And, the final product would be at SD resolution.

Edit #2: I don't know how I would actually do this (essentially trying to simulate having a two shot video, with a single, fixed HD, and a manned (roving) SD camcorder, and then doing tricks in editing). If anyone has any sugestions, I'd welcome the input. I'm thinking the maximum zoom of the HD data would be only to the extent of "turning the HD into SD". Something like: start with the full image from the HD, start slowly zooming while panning in general direction of intended target, "zoom" only to the extent that the data would be SD, and then switch over to the actual SD data, which would have been shot in contemplation of the editing. (That is, the SD would have preplanned shots of certain persons or sections.) How could one do this? At the beginning of the "zoom", the data would need to be downscaled. At the end of the "zoom", I would just like to be able to specify a window of 640x480 pixels from the HD frames and use those pixels to form SD video. I don't know if I am making sense, but if I am, how would one do this? Or is it not feasible?

Edit #3: Sorry. My bad. Disregard my erroneous reference to "640x480".

Last edited by David Grove; March 14th, 2011 at 06:04 PM.
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Old March 14th, 2011, 04:40 PM   #2
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Re: Playing tricks with HD for hobby application?

David,

I just finished a project a few weeks back that was shot Hd and then output in SD. The method works quite well.

To make sure you do not pull into much you can put an SD image on a track change the opacity so that you can see it over the hd image and then you can zoom to the specific size exactly, of course once you have the size you can also pan at the same time.

Definitely an advantage of shooting hd and outputting SD.


I work in Vegas and this is really easy to do.
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Old March 14th, 2011, 05:02 PM   #3
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Re: Playing tricks with HD for hobby application?

Thank you, so much, for your response.

I may not have made clear that I'd like to be able to "zoom" while panning (Ken Burns effect). Then, near the end of the pan/zoom, dissolve to the SD shot.

As you can tell, I really don't know what I am talking about. I have not yet purchased an editor, but am happy to do so. I have fooled around, VERY MINIMALLY, with avisynth and virtualdub, but not for this project. In fact, I have not yet purchased an HD camcorder. My existing camcorder is an Optura Pi, so I have true progressive scan SD video available.

DG
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Old March 15th, 2011, 12:30 AM   #4
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Re: Playing tricks with HD for hobby application?

I guess I can't read, Dale. You did mention that you pan and zoom at the same time. Do you know whether Vegas is any more suited to this kind of editing than other editors?

Within the limits of not "going beyond SD from HD", if that makes any sense, I want to recompose/pan/zoom the video from HD, after the fact. I guess sort of like having my cake and eating it too.

Thank you.

DG
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Old March 15th, 2011, 09:26 AM   #5
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Re: Playing tricks with HD for hobby application?

David,

I find Vegas to be the easiest for this process.

down load a trial version and then go to the pan crop tool and experiment.

If I get you right??

I would start with the full hd image.

Find the point you want to go to SD. Crop to the SD image, setting the key frame. then I would at that point insert the SD image (if from another camera) and carry on.

the problem Is that the different aspect ratio so the SD image would be letter boxed in some fashion.

You could at that point set a background image in full HD on a second track, like a picture in picture.

which would get rid of the letter boxing.

Here is a link to a 3 minute video I did a while back for fun. At the end I used the pan crop tool to place one image inside a TV, same basic concept. I kept the aspect ratio hd but you can change the size to what ever you wanted or the background to what ever you wanted. At approximately 4:30 you will see what i mean. It only took minutes to do, hardest part was the TV was at an angle so I had to make that adjustment too.

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Old March 16th, 2011, 04:01 PM   #6
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Re: Playing tricks with HD for hobby application?

Thank you, Dale, for the example.

Also, I enjoyed your video, for its own sake.

Regards.

DG
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Old March 16th, 2011, 04:23 PM   #7
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Re: Playing tricks with HD for hobby application?

I've done the pan and crop thing as well - also with Vegas. Give it a try - as with all software help files their description of how to do things may be a bit puzzling at first, but it works well after you get used to it.

And thanks to Dale for a really nice video - I loved the part about scraping the car windshield - did it many times growing up in Boston, but don't need to do it here in Tucson - don't have to plug the car in at night either. Used to keep the engine oil on the stove all night in upstate NY though.
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