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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old December 20th, 2008, 08:40 AM   #1
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How do I make my EX-1 files H264 or MPEG?

I have the Western Digital TV HD Media Player and it won't recognize my EX-1 files, which I bring in to Final Cut via the Sony File Transfer Utility. All my stuff is shot in 1080 60i.

The Media Player will play MPEG and H264 so I need to convert my files into one of these formats (I've never done this before because thus far I've been simply amassing footage for future projects).

Could someone please tell me a simple way to achieve this?

Sorry if this is a really dumb question (which I suspect it is)!

Grateful for any help,

Arthur
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Old December 20th, 2008, 09:32 AM   #2
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There are no dumb questions, well ok there are, but this isn't one.

You can export to H.264 with Quicktime Pro, direct from the FCP timeline, even use Compressor.
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Old December 20th, 2008, 11:03 AM   #3
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Authur I also use the WD HD Media Player and it is a great unit. Two new jobs since purchasing the unit since I can go to a prospective client and show footage on their HDTV in 1080P. Also a client is now using this at a trade show next month.

As for the best way to go H264 from FC I do the following.
Export self contained QuickTime.
Open the .mov in QuickTime.
Go to Export and keep QuickTime movie to Quicktime movie.
Click Options and choose H264.
I keep the key frames the same as the current frame (example 29.97) then I use 5000bit rate.
Make sure you change the audio to 44.1 since the WD player does not like 48.
Then export and that should play fine.

I suggest you export from FC a 30 sec clip that you like and experiment.

I found this wonderful article on exporting from QuickTime hope all of this helps.
http://www.apple.com/quicktime/tutorials/h264.html

Also I think this thread should go to "Non-Linear Editing on the Mac".
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Old December 20th, 2008, 03:16 PM   #4
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Appreciate the responses. Paul I tried (as best I could) to follow your instructions. The good news is I'm getting video playback and it looks great on my 9 foot screen (720p projector). The bad news is the playback is very jerky. I must be doing something wrong with the frame rate.

Also I get no audio.

In the video settings (Standard Video Compression Settings) window I have these settings:

Compression Type: H.264
Frame Rate: Current
Key Frames: Automatic (I tried to set it to 29.97 but it was very jerky)
Frame Reordering: Checked
Data Rate: Automatic
Encoding is Best Quality (multi-pass)

Dimensions: 1920X1080 (current)


Audio:

Format: Integer (Little Endian)
Sample Rate: 44.100 kHz
Sample Size 16 bit
Channels: Stereo (LR)

I know I'm close! Please make my weekend and tell me where I'm screwing up!!
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Old December 20th, 2008, 03:26 PM   #5
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Authur did you read the article I attached in the last post? Worth it if you are exporting from QuickTime.

As for your jerky footage it could be a few things.
What is the footage frame rate? Do you have the sequence set the same as the footage was shot? The setting in Key frames and Frame Rate should be the same. I always input both so I know they are the same. 29.97 was just and example you might shoot 24p, 25p, 30p, 60p, 50i, or 60i I do not know but what ever you shot is what you should input.

I never use Data rate as Automatic I input a number. Start at 5000 and go up or down depending on how you like the footage/files size ratio.

Audio I think you need to use AAC but I would check the article again I am not near my editing station so I can't give you a definite answer.

Let me know how you make out I am on line for another hour.
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Last edited by Paul Cronin; December 21st, 2008 at 07:07 AM.
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Old December 20th, 2008, 04:02 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Cronin View Post
Authur did you read the article I attached in the last post? Worth it if you are exporting from QuickTime.

As for your jerky footage it could be a few things.
What is the footage frame rate? Do you have the sequence set the same as the footage was shot? The setting in Key frames and Frame Rate should be the same. I always input both so I know they are the same. 29.97 was just and example you might shoot 24p, 25p, 30p, 60p, 50i, or 60i I do not know but what ever you shot is what you should input.

I never use Data rate as Automatic I input a number. Start at 5000 and go up or down depending on how you like the footage/files size ratio.

Audio I think you need to use ACC but I would check the article again I am not near my editing station so I can't give you a definite answer.

Let me know how you make out I am on line for another hour.
Paul thank you very much! I shoot in 1080 60i so I should set the frame rate to 60i?
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Old December 20th, 2008, 04:15 PM   #7
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No 60i is the fields you should set it to 30. Also try a test using the settings QuickTime gives you for Frame Rate and Key Frame since I have never exported interlaced out of QuickTime.

Good luck I am out for the night.
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Old December 20th, 2008, 05:11 PM   #8
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It works...video and audio! Picture looks great but a few compression artifacts on some beach shots and a close up of a parrot's feathers.

Overall this is the best EX-1 footage I've been able to get on my 106" home theater screen.

Thanks very much for for the help. I'll read the article and keep tweaking.

Arthur
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Old December 21st, 2008, 07:10 AM   #9
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Good to hear Authur.

One thing to look at with the full size QuickTime movie prior to exporting. Open the .mov file in QuickTime then go to the pull down menus and click "Window" then "Movie Inspector". This will give you your frame rate, audio settings, and kbp/s out of Final Cut. But from what I remember AAC at 44.1 is what works best with the WD HD. But higher kbp/s up to 7000 you should see a difference.

Keep tweaking you might solve the compression artifacts with a higher kbp/s rate.
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Old December 21st, 2008, 08:45 AM   #10
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Thanks for the help, Paul.

After reading the Quicktime tutorial I decided to crank the bit rate up to 8000. The result was a much sharper image: the yellow breast feathers on a parrot were beautifully distinct and free of the "mushy" areas I saw at 5000.

I'm having a problem seeing horizonal lines with motion. Any movement--and I mean any movement--causes horizonal line patterns that are distracting and unacceptable.

Would I get better results in Pro Res HQ? I don't care about the file size--I want the most drop-dead gorgeous image I can display! Can I make a playable file without adding any further compression to my EX-1 files?

Best wishes,

Arthur
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Old December 21st, 2008, 08:51 AM   #11
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Authur 8000kbp/s will make a big difference if the files size does not bother you. As for the horizontal lines shoot 1080p 30p not 60i interlacing. 1080p is one of the great features you are buying with the EX cameras. How you render will not get rid of those lines from my experience. You need to go progressive. Then once you shoot progressive and what to improve your footage again look at the Convergent Design Flash XDR or the soon to the market Nano. Both of these recorders will raise the bit rate beyond the cameras processor since it takes the HD-SDI signal to the recorder. There is great info on DVinfo here http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/convergent-design-flash-xdr/

Must be a site to see at 106" screen. I thought my footage on a 40" Sony HDTV put me in the picture.
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Old December 21st, 2008, 09:03 AM   #12
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Paul, shooting 1080p is not an option for me as I have tons of footage already shot in 1080 60i.

There's a reason for this. I've really tried to like 1080p but I just prefer the look of 1080i. I know this sounds like blasphemy but there's a buttery softness about the look of 1080p that just doesn't do it for me. I prefer the razor-sharp look of 1080i.

Could there be some other setting that could help me get rid of these lines?
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Old December 21st, 2008, 09:06 AM   #13
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Picture Profile gives you loads of options for sharpness. You need to search the thread on picture profile for the EX1. There are loads of options and it is all personal taste. I shoot 1080p 30p and the footage is razor sharp.
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Old December 21st, 2008, 09:10 AM   #14
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Could you share a 1080p PP that I could try?
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Old December 21st, 2008, 10:19 AM   #15
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I am not near my camera so I can't show you what I use today. I am happy to send to you what I use when I am back near my camera.

You should look at the thread on EX1 PP to find you own setting.
http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/sony-xdca...e-recipes.html

The Picture Profile is personal taste and it is easy to overdue the settings. I like the profile Bill Ravens posted since his point is to shoot the most latitude for the camera. This makes sense to me to get the most from the camera. There are times I move away from this if there is not time for post work. Also there is a standard setting on post #389 that a lot of people are happy using. But all of this depends on so many variables.

If you are happy with your current results enjoy. If not you can experiment from this forum since there is loads of information.
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