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Old December 8th, 2005, 12:57 AM   #31
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I am a PC and MAC guy who just did a feature doc in premiere pro... I just upgraded to a Quad G5 FCP system, it is just more solid and standard for HD and the industry in general. Not better... just more standard.

Barry, those numbers cannot be correct... On a quad G5 with a FIBRE RAID, I can get MAX 6-8 streams in 720/24p... most the time I get 4-6 with 1080/60. When using a LaCie serial raid we got 3-5 streams MAX. That is all numbers for DVCproHD which is 8-bit. The key seems to be HDD speed, moreso than processor speed.



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Old December 9th, 2005, 03:20 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Green
Everyone knows I love Sony's Vegas software, but by my watch they've got 22 days to sort out their support for DV100 or I may just end up jumping ship to Apple (or perhaps Canopus).
Barry:

This has to be one of your funniest statements!
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Old December 9th, 2005, 03:52 PM   #33
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Barry:

This has to be one of your funniest statements!
Funny perhaps, but I agree and I'm sure there are others here that feel the same way. I have not updated my Vegas for a while now as I've been holding off. I'm switching to either Avid or Canopus if Sony doesn't get up to speed by the time my HVX200 arrives. I may also consider a new Mac with FCP-HD, depending on which is the best overall solution for the money. My workflow is primarily PC, but I do have a few Macs here as well... I don't care which platform I go with as long as I can create what I want.
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Old December 9th, 2005, 04:51 PM   #34
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FCP is a great tool, but it still has some codec issues as far as rendering DVCPRO HD goes.

http://codecs.onerivermedia.com/

"render with caution"
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Old December 10th, 2005, 01:16 AM   #35
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Saw the Canopus demo at DV Expo today. Quite impressive. It was 10 minutes before the show closed, so there wasn't much time at all, so I basically sat down and said "okay, here's the deal: I love Vegas, I love its workflow, but they aren't gonna help us out here, so I saw the FCP demo and it was impressive, but not Vegas-like. You've got the next 10 minutes, so sell me, a Vegas user, on how Canopus can do everything Vegas does but do it with DV100."

Well, they pretty much did. Pretty impressive demo. They flat-out admitted that Vegas has got them "pwned" as far as audio goes, but for everything else they looked competitive. Can't do AC-3 either, but they said that may be coming. I thought it looked interesting enough to take a demo disc home and I'll try it out. I wasn't disappointed, but it does seem like Vegas is ahead of it in some ways (one crucial way, for what I do: bezier masking! They don't have that yet, but may have it at NAB). And they have much better MXF support than Apple; in fact they have better MXF support than even Avid!

Looks interesting. Looks very interesting. For a "closed shop" it might be exactly what I'm looking for. If I was intending to hire myself out as a freelance editor, I think I'd probably still take this opportunity and leap over to FCP -- FCP's obviously far more entrenched than Edius is. But for a "closed shop", perhaps Edius is everything I need -- maybe not everything I want, but at least everything I need.

The ideal solution would be for Vegas to just announce support is coming. Native MXF Op-Atom support with a DirectX DV100 codec. That would be the ultimate HVX editing platform.

Come on, Vegas... let's hear some good news!
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Old December 10th, 2005, 01:17 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by Barlow Elton
FCP is a great tool, but it still has some codec issues as far as rendering DVCPRO HD goes.

http://codecs.onerivermedia.com/

"render with caution"
From what I understand, there was a codec revision from FCP4.5 to FCP5 -- supposed to have fixed a color-shift issue. Am I right on that? I saw a color shift in a file that someone compressed in FCP4.5 for me, and the Avid codec retained perfect color. Anyone know for sure?
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Old December 10th, 2005, 08:41 PM   #37
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I'm set on the mac with FCP 5, but what hard drives do I need to be able to edit DVCPro HD? Will a FW800 G-Raid work or do I need a scsi or fiber raid?
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Old December 10th, 2005, 09:18 PM   #38
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I'm set on the mac with FCP 5, but what hard drives do I need to be able to edit DVCPro HD? Will a FW800 G-Raid work or do I need a scsi or fiber raid?
You don't need over the top speed to edit DVCPRO HD at all. However, high drive read speed will be needed for multicam editing, multitrack realtime playback, and for playing any uncompressed HD you may end up doing.

My workflow will be to keep my video at DVCPRO HD format, until I do my final export master, which will then be output Uncompressed 8 or 10bit. For that I will be deploying a SATA RAID config since the data rate will be at the max currently possible from a single SATA drive, and diminishes once the drive starts getting filled. SATA RAID blows FW800 away, and is way less expensive than Fibre Channel or SCSI.

Sustained Data Rates Required for HD playback (with 48khz 16bit Audio):

DVCRPROHD 720p-1080i: 6MB/sec - 14.5MB/sec (FW400 would be fine for 720p/24N, but could get ugly with 720p60 and 1080i - FW800 would be fine)

Uncompressed 8bit 720p: 53MB/sec - FW800 would probably start choking on this

Uncompressed 10bit 720p:71MB/sec - RAID time...

Uncompressed 8bit 1080i: 95MB/sec

Uncompressed 10bit 1080i: 126.5MB/sec

As you get towards Uncompressed 10bit 1080i, you'll need something like 3-4 SATA drives in a RAID-0 config.

See my post for more regarding a SATA storage solution here:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showpost....5&postcount=15
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Old December 10th, 2005, 10:52 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Green
Saw the Canopus demo at DV Expo today. Quite impressive. It was 10 minutes before the show closed, so there wasn't much time at all, so I basically sat down and said "okay, here's the deal: I love Vegas, I love its workflow, but they aren't gonna help us out here, so I saw the FCP demo and it was impressive, but not Vegas-like. You've got the next 10 minutes, so sell me, a Vegas user, on how Canopus can do everything Vegas does but do it with DV100."

Well, they pretty much did. Pretty impressive demo. They flat-out admitted that Vegas has got them "pwned" as far as audio goes, but for everything else they looked competitive. Can't do AC-3 either, but they said that may be coming. I thought it looked interesting enough to take a demo disc home and I'll try it out. I wasn't disappointed, but it does seem like Vegas is ahead of it in some ways (one crucial way, for what I do: bezier masking! They don't have that yet, but may have it at NAB). And they have much better MXF support than Apple; in fact they have better MXF support than even Avid!

Looks interesting. Looks very interesting. For a "closed shop" it might be exactly what I'm looking for. If I was intending to hire myself out as a freelance editor, I think I'd probably still take this opportunity and leap over to FCP -- FCP's obviously far more entrenched than Edius is. But for a "closed shop", perhaps Edius is everything I need -- maybe not everything I want, but at least everything I need.

The ideal solution would be for Vegas to just announce support is coming. Native MXF Op-Atom support with a DirectX DV100 codec. That would be the ultimate HVX editing platform.

Come on, Vegas... let's hear some good news!
(Though this question is addressed to Barry Green, I hope that any of you here who read it will feel free to chime in with any helpful advice for me. BTW, I'm not a young guy, I'm a 57-year-old former marine and Viet Nam vet who thanks in part to some health problems from that war is looking at less than full lifetime expectancy, so the time for me to do this film is now. I've written several short stories and have taken many film classes over the years and I've been fascinated with film all my life. I've decided that it is time to stop just writing stories and film one, so I wrote "Holy War" so that I could give it my best shot. You can read the short story the script is based on by clicking on this link to my web site at www.holywar2.com.)

Barry, I've read your book and watched your DVD on filming with my two DVX100A's and found it very informative and full of useful tips. Thank you for that fine book and DVD, it helped me a lot. After shooting some of my first film "Holy War" I found that I still had a lot to learn, and have come to the conclusion that I needed a better script than the one I wrote, and I'm getting some help from a script doctor/writer in the LA area on fixing the script to put it into shooting shape. (Though I wrote the script with Movie Magic Screenwriter, it only puts out what you put in to it, and I didn't put enough into it to film the story as is.) I also realized that trying to follow the Kevin Smith plan for my first movie will not work, he had guys that were film/theater majors and were into making movies for "Clerks" and most of my friends are not that dedicated, interested and educated in film. So my initial experience turned into a lesson in herding cats, it was impossible to get them to all set aside part of their lives to donate time for my film on the same days and times. So I put a second on my house and raised more money to pay for semi pro actors, film/theater students at a couple of the local colleges in Reno, as well as more money for better equipment. (I can't pay SAG wages, but I can put up a few hundred or more for the actors that take the roles. It will be OK money for students who need it and want to act with some good indie film equipment.) This has led me to decide to buy a couple of the HVX200 cameras because I want to take the best shot I can at this, and the HVX looks like the best way to go for me and my current budget. I have the lights, mics and much of the other equipment I'll need for this film, but my current computer and the Premier pro suite is not up to the task of editing the output from the HVX200 DVCPRO HD in 1080i. So I've decided to get a couple of new computers, a laptop to use as the main recording medium for one camera, and a firestore type device for the second camera as well as a monster computer for the editing of the raw footage at home in my studio. (OK spare bedroom, but its what I have.)

This leads me to a question that you probably haven't had have to deal with before, but what software editing platform would you recommend for someone who is just getting into the film biz? Though I'll have some help from some of my buddies at TMCC/UNR who are much younger than I am and more into computers etc than I am, I still want something that is not to hard for an old guy like me to learn on. Right now it looks like the apple computers, the G5 quad and a power book and the FCP software is the best way to go for me. I'm not shooting for the ability to make a perfect master tape suitable for rendering into film, I don't have enough money for that nor do I have the skills needed to get to that level. I'm shooting for a good enough filming of the story, a computer/software program to edit it on and burn it to a DVD, and then submitting it to film festivals, or possibly some sort of Internet venue. If it gets picked up there, then I can work with interested parties with deep enough pockets to turn the film into well, film. If not, I gave it my best shot and I can live with that. What I can't live with is never trying esp. considering where my life is now. So any advice you can give me will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

David
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Old December 11th, 2005, 12:00 AM   #40
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Well David, -- well, wow. I wish you all the best. That's sad to hear that you may not have as much time as you should, and I hope you can accomplish what you set out to do.

First question is: do you really need an HVX, much less two of them? If your primary distribution goal is DVD, a DVX can handle that superbly, and it would be much, much less expensive, and the editing platforms would be less expensive, and the options for editing are much more wide open.

For a potential film transfer or a high-def release, obviously the HVX would be much better -- I'm just thinking that if money's tight enough that you're borrowing against your house to do this, you may want to consider just using the DVX100As, since you already have them and can already edit the footage. DVXes make excellent, excellent DVDs. The HVX could make 'em somewhat better, but if I was the one doing the budget for you, I'd have to wonder whether the expense of the HVXes plus new computers plus new software would all add up to the best place to put the money you have. I'm not saying the HVX won't be better, as I'm sure it will -- but will it be $20,000 or $25,000 better? Only you can answer that, but I would wonder. There've been a few DVX documentaries blown up to film, like Murderball, so it's not unheard of. And I'm not trying to talk you out of the HVX, I'm just saying that -- well, it's amazing how many things there are to pay for when making a film, so careful budgetary management will be required, and unless you have some specific reason as to why the HVX is worth spending the dough on (when you already have two DVX100A's), then I would say you should probably examine your reasoning most carefully. If you stayed on the DVX, you could continue to use your same editing software, etc.

A great script doctor is a good idea, hopefully you have a great one (there are a lot out there who aren't!) For script evaluation I recommend Craig Kellem of www.hollywoodscript.com, he's talented and very experienced and does a great job at a great rate. Not a script Doctor, per se, but someone who knows stories inside and out, an ex-ICM agent, the producer of The Rutles movie, etc -- he's been around and he understands scripts.

If you decide that you do want to go the HVX route, and you're looking at new editing computers, I'd have to say that the Mac is looking pretty darn interesting. Canopus may (or may not) prove to be a more compatible solution for my style of editing, but recognize that I'm not out there trying to hire myself out to get jobs as an editor. For someone who may do that, I think FCP is probably the much wiser choice, as it enjoys substantially wider market penetration in production houses than Canopus or Vegas likely ever will.
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Old December 11th, 2005, 03:16 PM   #41
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"The ideal solution would be for Vegas to just announce support is coming. Native MXF Op-Atom support with a DirectX DV100 codec. That would be the ultimate HVX editing platform."

have you put in a request or asked sony if they plan to add native DVCproHD or a DirectX 100 codec support in Vegas ?

i did ask them at NAB and at that time they said they had not received any request for it .. so start asking them ... in general for DvcProHd there has been little native support for it in NLE's ...maybe that will change in 2006 ?
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Old December 11th, 2005, 11:45 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by Barry Green
Well David, -- well, wow. I wish you all the best. That's sad to hear that you may not have as much time as you should, and I hope you can accomplish what you set out to do.

First question is: do you really need an HVX, much less two of them? If your primary distribution goal is DVD, a DVX can handle that superbly, and it would be much, much less expensive, and the editing platforms would be less expensive, and the options for editing are much more wide open.

For a potential film transfer or a high-def release, obviously the HVX would be much better -- I'm just thinking that if money's tight enough that you're borrowing against your house to do this, you may want to consider just using the DVX100As, since you already have them and can already edit the footage. DVXes make excellent, excellent DVDs. The HVX could make 'em somewhat better, but if I was the one doing the budget for you, I'd have to wonder whether the expense of the HVXes plus new computers plus new software would all add up to the best place to put the money you have. I'm not saying the HVX won't be better, as I'm sure it will -- but will it be $20,000 or $25,000 better? Only you can answer that, but I would wonder. There've been a few DVX documentaries blown up to film, like Murderball, so it's not unheard of. And I'm not trying to talk you out of the HVX, I'm just saying that -- well, it's amazing how many things there are to pay for when making a film, so careful budgetary management will be required, and unless you have some specific reason as to why the HVX is worth spending the dough on (when you already have two DVX100A's), then I would say you should probably examine your reasoning most carefully. If you stayed on the DVX, you could continue to use your same editing software, etc.

A great script doctor is a good idea, hopefully you have a great one (there are a lot out there who aren't!) For script evaluation I recommend Craig Kellem of www.hollywoodscript.com, he's talented and very experienced and does a great job at a great rate. Not a script Doctor, per se, but someone who knows stories inside and out, an ex-ICM agent, the producer of The Rutles movie, etc -- he's been around and he understands scripts.

If you decide that you do want to go the HVX route, and you're looking at new editing computers, I'd have to say that the Mac is looking pretty darn interesting. Canopus may (or may not) prove to be a more compatible solution for my style of editing, but recognize that I'm not out there trying to hire myself out to get jobs as an editor. For someone who may do that, I think FCP is probably the much wiser choice, as it enjoys substantially wider market penetration in production houses than Canopus or Vegas likely ever will.
Thanks for the input Barry. I got much the same advice from Shawn who is doing the re-write of the script. His recommendation is that I rent an HVX and see if I like it, and I may do that if they are available well before my planned shooting schedule in June. He also pointed out that the Cohen bros among others use FCP so it looks like it may be the best way for me to go. I do hope to do a good enough job that the film is picked up by a distributor. The story is the first of a trilogy, and I'm planning to shoot all three with the HVX if Holy War is successful. There have been so many stories lately that are re treads of other movies or TV shows, and what I write is very well, unique, so hopefully that will work in my favor.

As for the DVX's I have, though I did buy and install the 16X9 AG-LA7200G lens for them, they have limitations on use. They are harder to focus, have no auto stabilization available and though I don't use it, no auto focus. For moving shots they have limitations and are harder to use that the HVX should be. For what I'm trying to do I think the HVX will be a better platform, and I won't have to move up again camera wise if the first film is successful. Also the workflow should be a bit easier if everything is tape less. Having said that I'll be watching what you and others report on the HVX and will hold off until I see how they match up to the hype.

As for taking out the second, well the truth is that with over 25 years left on my first, I'll never live long enough to pay it off and be able to retire, so this is my best shot to do both. My best asset is my creative mind and I need to put it to my best use while I can still use it. Thank you for your reply, and I look forward to reading what you have to say about the HVX and the software and hardware to make it fly.

David
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Old December 12th, 2005, 12:47 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by Barry Green
From what I understand, there was a codec revision from FCP4.5 to FCP5 -- supposed to have fixed a color-shift issue. Am I right on that? I saw a color shift in a file that someone compressed in FCP4.5 for me, and the Avid codec retained perfect color. Anyone know for sure?
It's still got issues. I think the aliasing I saw on the "Tosh" website composite pic was particularly due to this:

Captured to FCP DVCPRO HD
rendered as a second pass of compression to create the composite
Color filtering in QT codec still screwed up

That pic had obvious blurring applied to the edges (around the hair of the guy and girl) in order to make it look better.

One area where DVCPRO HD really sucked, was in applying a long (4-5) second fade to black on a high contrast scene that had fog and shafts of light. (Think dark Bladerunner stuff) Banding like a mofo. I know this is most likely an issue with 8 bit codecs in general, but it was just plain awful rendered in DVCPRO HD. You either have to apply some dithering noise to the transition or import the clip into After Effects or Motion and render it in a 10 bit codec.
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Old December 12th, 2005, 01:03 AM   #44
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One area where DVCPRO HD really sucked... it was just plain awful rendered in DVCPRO HD. You either have to apply some dithering noise to the transition or import the clip into After Effects or Motion and render it in a 10 bit codec.
Shouldn't one be mastering to Uncompressed 10-bit in the first place? I think yes.
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Old December 12th, 2005, 02:10 AM   #45
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Shouldn't one be mastering to Uncompressed 10-bit in the first place? I think yes.
Sure, but what deck are you going to output to? D5? HDCAM SR? At some point you have to reintroduce compression unless you can output to a very expensive tape deck.
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