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Sony TRV950 / PDX10 Companion
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Old December 13th, 2003, 04:46 PM   #1
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editting PDX10 footage in Premiere

I have been trying to shoot in 16x9 and transfer the footage through fire wire to my computer. It's working, except one thing is puzzling me.

In premiere the frame aspect ratio when transferring DV is always set to 720x480. This doesn't change whether I choose wide screen or standard.

When I play the clip I captured within premiere, it looks fine, but when I play it in windows media player or any other player, it looks stretched vertically. And when I export the clip premier doesn't allow me to change the frame aspect ratio as long as I have Microsoft DV AVI selected in the general section.

These are the symptoms of my problem.

Here are my questions.

1. When editing PDX10 16x9 footage what frame aspect ratio should I use?

2. If I plan to export to DVD, what's the best way to go about this using premiere to get the best results? I mean what codec is most recommended to export out of premiere? or should I export uncompressed then use the DVD burning software to compress it?

I know a lot of these things require trial and error methods, but any experience or pointers would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks
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Old December 13th, 2003, 05:31 PM   #2
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I can't speak specifically for Premiere or WMP since I use a Mac, but it sounds like you've set things properly and it's behaving as expected. DV is always 720x480. Premiere is using a wider pixel aspect ratio to display it on your computer screen when you edit. But the actual footage is going to be anamorphic, so everything will look too tall and thin. If you view it on a 16:9 monitor it will appear in the proper proportion.

If you want to view your finished footage on a computer monitor with square pixels then you'll need to render a separate version with the correct aspect ratio. For a full resolution sequence this should be ~854x480. Sorry I can't tell you exactly what to set to make this happen. The situation will be the same on the Mac using Quicktime, which doesn't "understand" anamorphic video either.

Again, I can't tell you the specific settings for a DVD, but it sounds like Premiere is already set correctly; it should be 720x480. If you've setup Premiere properly for 16:9 editing it will embed a flag in the video stream that tells DVD players and widescreen TV's to stretch the image back to the correct proportions. I'll leave it to someone else to answer the DVD codec question since I don't have any experience there.

You also must be sure to have your DVD player properly configured to match your TV. If you configure it for a 16:9 TV then your footage will stretch to fill the screen. If you set it for a 4:3 TV then the DVD player will automagically letterbox it. Are you using a widescreen monitor or TV? If not then it may be easier for you to just drop your 16:9 footage into a regular 4:3 sequence in Premiere. I believe this will cause it to be letterboxed inside the 720x480 frame (or at least that's what happens in FCP). Of course the disadvantage to this is a loss of resolution.
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Old December 13th, 2003, 05:46 PM   #3
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Thanks Boyd,

I really appreciate your insight, it clarifies things much.

I'll experiment with the other options you outlined in your response, and see which will give the best results.

Thanks again.
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Old December 14th, 2003, 09:04 AM   #4
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> The situation will be the same on the Mac using Quicktime,
> which doesn't "understand" anamorphic video either.

Actually the size of the displayed image is contained as metadata in quicktime movies. Thus, you con easily use Movie Player (as long as you have QT Pro) to set the displayed image size to 854x480, 720x400 or whichever display resolution you might want. If you modify the display size and save the movie it will then display correctly in Player and other QuickTime compatible applications. This is great because you do not need to recompress the video. It is not so great in that that the computer has to do a little more work to resize the video upon playback in real time. At least on my computer QuickTime handles this quick enough so I use this technique to view anamorphic DV movies on the desktop and get an idea of what they will look like.
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