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Old October 26th, 2006, 09:57 AM   #1
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HDV Workflow?


I'm run a large number of edit suites at a college level art school.

Needless to say the DV (SD) revolution was a huge success story for us. The DV standard meant students could borrow our cameras or use their own. The Canon range of GL/XL 's met our needs famously, and techniques leanrned on them translated well to their range of still cameras (and more importantly, visa versa). From a technical point of view capture is no problem.

Our edit suites are equipped with decks that range from the lower end JVC dual DV/VHS models (terrific value BTW) to more serious Sony DSR decks with DVCam support. And everything remains transferrable ... all captured material can be worked on in any edit suite.

FCP handles our post production effortlessly (with a little help from Nuendo for Audio...)

Now we have begun movng into HD now. After standing back for a while I determined that I like the DVC Pro HD fromat as shot in the Panasonic HVX200 cameras. We got a couple of these and use them for adavnced projects. The system again works great. Shoot. Dump to HD. Edit anywhere.

But here's the question. It's going to be difficult to settle on DVCPro HD as a standard for everything. The Cameras are a bit expensive... workflow a little involved for the 'casual' or 'beginning' user. Those who find DV som easy to work with.

I was anticipating HDV to step up and take over for DV. Smaller, cheaper cameras... consmuer(ish) decks. Interoperability of tapes etc.

Boy was I wrong. Looks like we're of on a tangent here too. The JVC flavor of HDV .... the Sony Flavor... then there's Canon's own spin. JVC deck won't play Sony or Canon .... Sony won't play JVC... Canon even have a mode that noone has a deck for! (so I'm told.....)

Seems like *noone* wants to make a sub $3K HDV deck....

Is anyone here attemting to bring HD production to the masses? There's bunches of consumer HDV cameras... where's the rest of the workflow?

I know tape is going away... but it's still a killer medium for acquisition ... cost/convenience/capacity/familiarity/

Why why why can't HDV be the logical replacement for DV? A single standard...

Between them I think Sony/JVC/Canon are killing chapter 2 of the DV revolution!! ;-)

Someone fill me in!


Lee Faulkner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 26th, 2006, 10:35 AM   #2
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First, the way I see it, HDV is the medium for cost effective HD production, and should be fine for your purposes. The fact that we have various flavors shoult be encouraging to those who want to be able to manipulate the medium. The problem lies in the availability of software to handle the various forms.

2nd, on the PC side, getting the HDV to the computer is accomplished using tape to disk transfer, in the various flavors, in most editing suites either directly, or with plug ins. On FCP, I understand there may still be some issues with certain flavors.

3rd, Sony will be selling a hard disk capture device to use with its cameras, and I assume other brands to compete with Firestore and Citidisk. This will allow faster access to the footage for editing. I don't know how that figures in with FCP.

4th. There are technical issues involving use of various versions and film rates. I don't see that as any different than choices available in DV. There was choices for 16:9 or 4:3, and various frame rates, and interlaced v. non-interlaced capture.

5th. Depending on desired output, there are choice of editing styles and qualities. On PC side, Maximum quality and color correction requires consideration of intermediate file usage like Cineform (in Vegas or PremierePro), or Edius HQ. On PC side, if you strapped for cash, you live with native HDV editing in Vegas 7, Premiere Pro 2.0 or even Pinnacles Studio 10 plus. With these, you expect degradation of image quality with successive renders.

So my question is: Is your problem with FCP and your choice of OS. Does it provide you with enough flexibility to meet the needs of all your students ? Or should you be providing a mix of editing capabilities in that learning environment, ie both PC and Mac. Hopefully FCP issues will be resolved by them in the future, and that is the biggest complaint I have seen on that side. But shouldn't your students have exposure to all capabilities out there ?
Chris J. Barcellos
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Old October 26th, 2006, 11:42 AM   #3
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Yeah, compared to DV the move to prosumer HD is a bit messy. Another thing to remember is that w/HDV you can't monitor via firewire (you need something like a Decklink card or the Matrox MXO). If I was in the position for buying for an institution I'd think Sony has an advantage because of the breadth of their line up. You could buy some of the HC3's to use as decks and some A1U's for general student use. Since you already have a couple HVX's I'd hang onto those and use them for "higher end" projects.

Just remember to reminder you students every now and again that it's about the stories they tell not about the shiny toys they use. :)

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Old October 28th, 2006, 04:46 PM   #4
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HDV1 vs HDV2. And when to convert HDV to SD or HD

We are starting to integrate more and more HDV content into our workflow. Our needs are to integrate HDV into our SD or HD productions. For several reasons, we will most likely not work directly with HDV content (only used for shooting). We convert it.

Resize the HDV within FCP (or using 3rd party plugins) is possible but it takes time, so we are not going that path. instead we are planning to use the Miranda HD-Bridge Dec to convert the HDV to either HD-SDI or SD-HDI in realtime. The converted signal is either recorded into SD or HD tape or we capture it using Blackmagic hardware.

I agree with Lee, the interoperability between HDV vendors is important in order to make the HDV revolution for HD the way DV was for SD.

As far as I understood, Sony and JVC adopted 2 different flavors of HDV (HDV1 and HDV2)

HDV type-1
Adopted by JVC
1280x720 (progressive)
square pixels
pixel aspect ratio of 1:1
Frame rate @ 60,50,30,25,24
Group of picture: 6
MPEG2 stream at 19.7 Mbps/s
Sampling Frequency for Luminance: 74.25MHz

HDV type-2
Adopted by Sony and Canon
1440x1080 (interlaced)
non-square pixels
pixel aspect ratio of 1.3333:1
Frame rate @ 60,50
Group of picture: 12 and/or 15
MPEG2 stream at 25 Mbps/s
Sampling Frequency for Luminance: 55.7MHz

The common specs are:
Sampling Format: 4:2:0
Codec: MPEG2 Video (profile & level: MP@H-14)
Quantization: 8 bits (both luminance and chrominance)
Compression : MPEG1 Audio Layer II
Sampling Frequency 48kHz
Quantization 16 bits
Bit rate after Compression 384kbps
Audio Mode Stereo (2 channels)
Same as DV format (DV and/or Mini DV cassette tape)

There is a difference between the "recording format" and the "video signal recording format".
The video signal recording format is either HDV1 or HDV2, the recording format varies the frame rate (720/60p, 720/30p, 720/50p, 720/25p, 720/24p, 1080/60i, 1080/50i, 1080/25p, 1080/30p, 1080/24p)

Basically Sony decks do not play back HDV1 and JVC deck does not play back HDV2. The only interoperability is when you use the decks to play back DV format.

The JVC GY-HD250U has HD/SD SDI outputs which is nice, but like I've said, the use of HDV format stops as soon as you are done shooting, and until we have a real interoperability between the formats and decks, we are going to keep it that way.

If you need a deck for HDV playback or recording, it is dependent on the format of your source (either JVC BR-HD50E or Sony HVR-M15/25U). then you can either use the Miranda HD-Bridge Dec or the Convergent Design HD-Connect-LE to up/down-convert HDV to SD/HD-SDI. I don't think at this time, it is advisable to invest in an all HDV workflow/solution - especially that most likely your final output format will be SD or HD.


Guillaume Iacino is offline   Reply

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