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Old October 16th, 2008, 02:15 PM   #1
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Editing HD footage on a SD timeline. Problem.

Ok I have to make an SD dvd and have always just gone from FCP straight to compressor. But others have said the imge is "muddy", and although I have been relatively happy with the finished DVD, I am sure there is room for improvement.

So a couple of weeks ago I bookmarked a thread on here which discribed how to do it. Fine, I thought, as soon as I make the DVd I will use this method. Here it is below.

-------------------------------------------------------

The key I have found is to make sure you start with progressive footage! It always looks bad when you go from Upper Field first HD to lower field first SD. If you have HDV in 1080i instead of progressive, then here is what you need to do:
1) Take your edited HD sequence in FCP.
2) Create as others have said an SD sequence, but MAKE SURE THE FIELD DOMINANCE IS SET TO NONE!!! It usually defaults to lower field first!!!
3) Drag your HD sequence to it, render and output.

If the SD sequence is set to lower field first then it will look HORRENDOUS! Try it out...make one lower field, drag an interlaced HD sequence into it, you'll see all sorts of weird jaggies and bad interlaced artifacts. Then click "Sequence settings" and then make it "none" for field dominence. You'll then need to click on the timeline somewhere and it'll "snap" into great clarity!

It took me a LONG time to figure this out! Now, I give you this knowledge for free!! :) Seriously, this may not be the issue your having, but it was for me!
-----------------------------------------
With thanks to Mr Fredericks.

So I have a problem. I have done al my editing in HD, I make a new SD sequence, then try and cut and paste the HD timeline onto the SD one. A popup says "for best performance your sequence and video should be set to the format of the clips you are editing. Change sequence settings to match the clip settings?

If I say yes the SD timeline turns into a HD timeline. If I say no, I get a popup, "operatin not allowed, you cannot nest sequences with different editing time bases".

Now I tried to just drag the "sequence1" onto the sd timeline. Thats what I get.

If I cut and past the edited timeline, it corrupts and the video and audio go slightly out of sinc by 0.1, and tiney gaps appear between clips. Guess that's not the way to do it.

So what is the right way? Where have I gone wrong?

Thanks in advance.


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Steve Shovlar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 16th, 2008, 02:23 PM   #2
 
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Sounds like an editing issue, not an EX issue.
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Old October 16th, 2008, 03:07 PM   #3
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Another way.

Not sure if I can replicate your issue but having recently shot in HD (720) for a SD/NTSC project I allowed Compressor to do the downconversion before submitting to the client. I left the sequence in HD until that point.

Another way I would have tried is cutting the project on an HD timeline, opening up another timeline, pasting, selecting the sequence settings, choosing the appropriate SD format, rendering the sequence in the new SD format and then applying gfx, titles and other paraphenalia. Is this what you did?

Both of these seem to work fine for me. I have also used MPEG Streamclip to great effect when downconverting.

Jus.
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Old October 16th, 2008, 03:09 PM   #4
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Also...

It also sounds like your using FCP 5. Is that right? FCP 6 allows the use of varying codec/formats/framerates within a single sequence.

Jus.
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Old October 16th, 2008, 03:16 PM   #5
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I recommend that way:

1. Edit on a (interlaced) HD-timeline
2. export with Compressor to progressive SD with 50fps (PAL) or 59.94fps (NTSC) and ProRes-Codec.
3. Convert the result with Compressor to SD-interlaced and mpeg2-codec.

That works because Compressor proper converts interlaced->progressive(->rescale) and vice versa, but because of some kind of a bug it has problems with interlaced->rescale->interlaced.

But if you know from the very first that the final result will be SD, you should shoot with 720p/50 or 720p/60.
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Old October 16th, 2008, 03:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin Benn View Post
It also sounds like your using FCP 5. Is that right? FCP 6 allows the use of varying codec/formats/framerates within a single sequence.

Jus.
No 6.04. Very frustrating. I can cut and paste the footage but it messes it up, opens up fraction of a second gaps between clips etc.
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Old October 16th, 2008, 03:31 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dominik Seibold View Post
I recommend that way:

1. Edit on a (interlaced) HD-timeline
2. export with Compressor to progressive SD with 50fps (PAL) or 59.94fps (NTSC) and ProRes-Codec.
3. Convert the result with Compressor to SD-interlaced and mpeg2-codec.

That works because Compressor proper converts interlaced->progressive(->rescale) and vice versa, but because of some kind of a bug it has problems with interlaced->rescale->interlaced.

But if you know from the very first that the final result will be SD, you should shoot with 720p/50 or 720p/60.

Hi Dom, I shoot 720P50. I am currently trying a new method to see if there's an improvement.

Do all editing in 720P50, export as a Prores 422 ( not hq), bring that into compressor and get Compressor to downconvert it to DVD.

Tried it before and got a bit of aliasing. Will know in about two hours.
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Old October 16th, 2008, 04:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Shovlar View Post
Tried it before and got a bit of aliasing.
It's very important that you change the rescaling-algorithm in Compressor from bilinear to optimal. Then you'll get perfect results without any (noticeable) aliasing.
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Old October 16th, 2008, 07:42 PM   #9
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I think it's trying to tell you that you've got an HD sequence with edit time base, say, 23.98 and your SD sequence is set up at , say 29.97. Just match the SD edit time base to the one your using for the HD sequence and you should be fine.

Use these SD sequence settings:

Frame Size 720x480/ NTSC DV 3:2
Field Dom: None
Edit Time Base: 29.97
Compressor: DVCPRO50/NTSC
advanced: 29.97/Progressive/16:9

Just made a bunch of SD DVD's with these settings after dropping a default XDCam sequence into this SD sequence. You'll need to render before outputting, but you can skip Compressor and just output using QT, self-compressed optional.
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Old October 16th, 2008, 08:51 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Shovlar View Post
The key I have found is to make sure you start with progressive footage!
1) Take your edited HD sequence in FCP.
2) Create as others have said an SD sequence, but MAKE SURE THE FIELD DOMINANCE IS SET TO NONE!!! It usually defaults to lower field first!!!
3) Drag your HD sequence to it, render and output.

Steve, that is the way to go. No copying, no pasting though. Just drag the HD Edit sequence into an SD sequence as if it were a simple clip. Render and you are done. Bingo.
To get a sharp SD video use ProRes422 or MotionJPEG A as your target codec for the SD sequence.

Or as Justin put it correctly: Output an HD video and downscale that using MPEGStreamClip. Very easy. Absolutely crisp results. Target codecs again ProRes422 or MotionJPEG A.

Hope this helps. pe.
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Old October 17th, 2008, 02:39 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Chandler View Post
I think it's trying to tell you that you've got an HD sequence with edit time base, say, 23.98 and your SD sequence is set up at , say 29.97. Just match the SD edit time base to the one your using for the HD sequence and you should be fine.

Use these SD sequence settings:

Frame Size 720x480/ NTSC DV 3:2
Field Dom: None
Edit Time Base: 29.97
Compressor: DVCPRO50/NTSC
advanced: 29.97/Progressive/16:9

Just made a bunch of SD DVD's with these settings after dropping a default XDCam sequence into this SD sequence. You'll need to render before outputting, but you can skip Compressor and just output using QT, self-compressed optional.

OK you sussed it. Being UK bound I shot 720P50, and I was trying to drop this onto an SD timeline of PAL 25 FPS. I changed it to 50 and the sequence dropped on the sd timeline with no problems. I will now see how this comes out.

Then I will try Dominiks method and change the algorithm in Compressor.

Thanks to all.
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Old October 17th, 2008, 03:58 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dominik Seibold View Post
It's very important that you change the rescaling-algorithm in Compressor from bilinear to optimal. Then you'll get perfect results without any (noticeable) aliasing.
Can't find this anywhere in Compressor. Is it called something else? If not, WHERE IS IT!!!!

Cheers
Steve
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Old October 17th, 2008, 07:38 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Shovlar View Post
Can't find this anywhere in Compressor. Is it called something else? If not, WHERE IS IT!!!!
I don't know how it's exactly called in the english version of FCP, but perhaps this picture helps:
http://www.dominik.ws/compressorrescaling.png
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Old October 17th, 2008, 07:50 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Shovlar View Post
Then I will try Dominiks method
The method I posted was for interlaced footage. But your footage is 50p, so do this:

1. edit on a 720p/50-timeline in FCP
2. select export->compressor
3. in compressor choose your SD-mpeg2-preset
4. change the rescaling-quality and, if you want to retain the 50fps-information, select interlaced output (odd fields first) in the mpeg2-settings and frame-settings

or

1. edit on a 720p/50-timeline in FCP
2. select export->quicktime->ProRes
3. use the result as source in compressor
4. in compressor choose your SD-mpeg2-preset
5. change the rescaling-quality and, if you want to retain the 50fps-information, select interlaced output (odd fields first) in the mpeg2-settings and frame-settings
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Old October 17th, 2008, 08:15 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dominik Seibold View Post
I don't know how it's exactly called in the english version of FCP, but perhaps this picture helps:
http://www.dominik.ws/compressorrescaling.png
OK Thanks Dominik.
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