I talked to Apple Japan guy today and he claims that DVCPRO HD has problems? at DVinfo.net

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Old July 24th, 2007, 01:06 PM   #1
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I talked to Apple Japan guy today and he claims that DVCPRO HD has problems?

Of course heís an Apple guy that want to make the ProRes the choice of format, and I donít even think he actually makes any visual compositions and hate people talk smart when they just go by technical specs on the white paper.

I talked to the chief cameraman of NHK who tells me DVCPRO HD is fine, but this Apple Japan guy must be telling people around to make ProRes look good saying DVCPRO HD format is bad after going through some editing.

Yeah, ProRes is nice but Iím thinking it is not worth the data rate for most purposes.

What is your counterdiction to his saying on DVCPRO HD format gets bad after going through the editing?

I have no problems capturing and editing on FCP6, but would it get so bad if you process the clips with AfterEffects?
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Old July 24th, 2007, 04:11 PM   #2
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DVCPRO-HD is a perfectly suitable codec for editing. But I wouldn't want to recompress it through five or six generations... it'll hold up far better than any MPEG-2-based GOP codec, but it's still only an 8-bit codec like all the other camera acquisition codecs, and after multiple generations of rendering the compression might start to add up.

If you're constantly uncompressing, rendering out to different codecs, then bringing the footage back in, then yes that'll start to add up and ProRes would be a more suitable codec for that. But if you're talking about editing your camera original footage, with one mastering out at the end, DVCPRO-HD is fantastic for that.
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Old July 24th, 2007, 08:24 PM   #3
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Thank you very much Barry. I thought the Apple guy's story is misleading, he simply does not clarify the efficiencies on each production stage. I hope he doesn't do that to mislead people.

What gets me is how would anyone in professinal field want to go through transcodec even more than few times. I can't imagine professionals simply being skeptical that bad.

Barry, what is your opinion on capturing originally HDV footage, say via analog component or HDSDI out of a deck with DVCPRO HD? I'm imagining as long as the original HDV footage is shot reasonable then won't transcode that bad.
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Old July 24th, 2007, 09:26 PM   #4
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For multiple generations, there are better codecs. But if you aren't going to be going through multiple generations, there's no better way to go than staying with the original raw pixels. Especially when that original format is an extremely fast edit codec too.

I try to avoid any transcoding whenever possible. Sometimes transcoding makes sense; right now AVC-HD is nearly impossible to edit without transcoding to an "editing codec", and HDV can be a lot slower to edit but that process can be speeded up significantly by using an "editing codec" (such as CineForm or ProRes). But when the footage is already in an editing format, there's not a lot of incentive to further transcode it.

As for your question: are you saying that you have HDV footage, and you're considering playing it in an HD-SDI HDV deck and outputting it as HD-SDI, and asking about the viability of capturing that footage into DVCPRO-HD as your editing codec? If so, that's certainly a valid workflow and one that Apple users have been using for a couple of years (ever since version 4.5 of FCP). There are better "pure editing" codecs (like Sheer, or ProRes) that might be a better choice, but HDV->DVCPRO-HD certainly works. If you have an HD-SDI import card you'd want to use the best codec you could; DVCPRO-HD is a totally workable choice, but if you had the option to go to a 10-bit milder-compression or nearly-lossless compression like Sheer, that would probably be the preferred choice. Unless you'll be needing to send that footage to other apps (or cross-platform); in that case you'd want to make sure that the particular codec you chose is available on the other systems.
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Old July 26th, 2007, 04:13 AM   #5
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Thank you Barry,

A HD TV drama I'm helping, it will be shot with DVCPRO HD and after telling the production company about what you mentioned and they decided to edit with DVCPRO HD and it will be mastered on D5 (I think they are going to do the online editing with DS).

They love how DVCPRO HD being light, so they can edit with their dual G5 with Matrox MXO that they have. I'm also recommending CalDigit's firewire RAID drive for that.
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Old July 26th, 2007, 12:30 PM   #6
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Barry,

What your opinion regarding DVCPRO-HD versus Canopus HQ codec for multi-generation edits? Which codec works better in this aspect? I note the both DVCPRO-HD and Canopus HQ compresses the video for a given timeframe to more or less the same file size.
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Old July 26th, 2007, 06:04 PM   #7
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I haven't bothered much with HQ; I much prefer sticking to the native original data whenever possible. HQ's supposed to be quite solid and robust; it's 1440x1080 @ 4:2:2, and is variable bitrate so it can ramp up for scenes that need more bits, or throttle down for scenes that don't need so much. But HQ is also a prefiltering codec, so it goes through the same 1920->1440 conversion process as other HD codecs do. That's not absolutely ideal for multiple generations, but if you're working in a 1440x1080 project and doing your final upsample to 1920 upon delivery, then it's pretty much a non-issue.

On EDIUS I stick with Canopus HD, using the original DVCPRO-HD data unmodified rather than going through a generation loss to transcode to HQ.
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Old July 28th, 2007, 02:18 AM   #8
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I do A roll edits in DVCproHD and then use uncompressed (may move to ProRes) for final color correcting, graphics, etc. DVCproHD can fall apart very fast with heavy color grading and effects. Shadowy reds turn to poo poo in a hurry.

Many people are re-ingesting uncompressed (via a 1200A deck over HD-SDI) to build the final edit but I just copy the sequence, render, re-render which in most cases works just as well.



ash =o)
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