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Old August 29th, 2009, 11:52 PM   #1
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Advice on shooting 24/25p for distribution.

Hello all,

I actually hate questions like this because of course, there is no one right answer but I guess since this took me a little by surprise, I'm seeking recommendations more than anything.

So here goes;

I'm shooting (at this point) a direct-to-DVD feature in about a month's time. All my testing thus far has been done with a Sony EX-1/1080/24fps. It works great and I'm very happy with how it looks.

However, I live in PAL land and I shot some other footage this weekend with my camera still set up(@ 24p) and then tried to put it on a DVD for someone – (PAL of course @ 25/50i). I had this big run around just to keep the footage looking pretty and not 'smeary' with the frame rate conversion from 24p to 25 for PAL.

So the question is, am I doing the right thing shooting my feature @ 24p instead of 25p? The initial distribution I guess, will be in this country (PAL). It's a little confusing since the predominant number of commercial movies are 24p – and of course are converted and play fine on our PAL 25/50i systems.

Should I shoot how I want to shoot (1080/24p) and let the a potential distributor figure out the conversion issues? Or is it more prudent to shoot for my own 'zone' so that I can at least make good looking DVD's without the conversion hassles?

If anyone else has met (and solved) this issue, I'd be very keen to hear about your experiences.

Regards,
David.
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Old August 30th, 2009, 12:12 AM   #2
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Yeah shoot 24p- it's not that tricky to conform 24 to 25p, just a bit more work in sound post to fix sync.

Noah
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Old August 30th, 2009, 02:40 AM   #3
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If this is strictly for DVD (and not for broadcast), shooting 24p regardless of the region makes sense. Not because conversion to 25p is easier that 25p to 24p (if you do it via simple 4% speed change, it's equally easy; if you want to keep the speed unaltered, it's equally tricky as frames need interpolation). Simply because you can as well leave it at 24p (all PAL players/TV's are 24p-compliant)

However, there is another thing to consider when shooting 24p in a 50 Hz land: potential problems with light sources. With 25p, you have the 1/25th, 1/50th, 1/100 th shutter speeds available which make it compliant with any light source operating at 50 Hz. Not so with 24p...
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Old August 30th, 2009, 09:20 PM   #4
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Thanks for the replies Noah, Potr, I'll take your advice and stick with 24p.
Regards,
David.
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Old August 31st, 2009, 12:00 AM   #5
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I am so over p. 25 is too jerky for me, let alone 24p. If only we had the smoothness of 30p....

Hope you sort out your 24 to 25p issues.
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Old August 31st, 2009, 04:05 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Issko View Post
I am so over p. 25 is too jerky for me, let alone 24p. If only we had the smoothness of 30p....

Hope you sort out your 24 to 25p issues.
I too noticed the 25p was looking jerky, but when I look at it on a HD TV screen it looks fine. Bear in mind that most film based movies are still shot at 24fps and they look smooth to me. Don't use ClipBrowser or your NLE to judge the quality of playback, generally both will introduce some form of jerkiness. Rendering to DVD should cure the jitters.

I assume you are using PAL or 25p. Footage shot using NTSC 30 or 60p should also be playable on a PAL TV. If you are shooting for Blue_Ray then you should still have smooth looking movies at 25p
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Old August 31st, 2009, 09:20 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Issko View Post
I am so over p. 25 is too jerky for me, let alone 24p. If only we had the smoothness of 30p....

Hope you sort out your 24 to 25p issues.
A lot of people say that but I can say that there's not a single major movie ever released into theaters that was shot in 30p. So I wouldn't recommend it to anyone...

Noah
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Old August 31st, 2009, 12:04 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Warrilow View Post
tried to put it on a DVD for someone Ė (PAL of course @ 25/50i)
Shoot what gets you the footage how you want/need it. It sounds like you want/need 24p.

Then, just create a 24p DVD instead of 50i/50p from your footage. It is part of the DVD standard and all devices will display it. Progressive devices (player/display) will display it @ 24p, older sets add appropriate conversion like pull down for NTSC or some speed adjustments for PAL.

Also remember that all PAL playback devices play NTSC disks without a hitch, but the other way around that is not so.

Going the route with the least conversions is always a good choice in my book. Let the player (device manufacturer) figure out to play something at it's best.

If you want a single distribution format; you can't go wrong with a 24p NTSC on DVD.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Warrilow View Post
I actually hate questions like this because of course, there is no one right answer
Sure there is; if you set parameters. Yours are that you have 24p and want an easy single distribution format on DVD.

George.

P.S. Any other formats (broadcast, web, etc.) "may" require conversion.
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Old August 31st, 2009, 01:03 PM   #9
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What usually happens in UK television is that 24p just gets played at 25 frames per second, they don't make any conversions. Assuming you're shooting single system sound, each frame will have it's own piece of sound anyway. The 4% speed change does change the pitch, correcting this is best done a case by case basis because it can introduce nasty effects on the music track.
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Old August 31st, 2009, 03:59 PM   #10
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aesthetically speaking, have any of you been able to observe any visual difference in the image/motion of 24p over 25p on this camera? Instinctively I'd opt for 24p for shooting a feature, but if PAL land is the main place for distribution are there any visual advantages (not speaking technical right now) to shooting in 24p?
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Old August 31st, 2009, 04:20 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Noah Kadner View Post
A lot of people say that but I can say that there's not a single major movie ever released into theaters that was shot in 30p. So I wouldn't recommend it to anyone...

Noah
Seeing as my main business is strictly corporate and not movies, it's 50i all the way for meeeee!!! My clients do not care about the look, which I discuss with them prior to shooting. They just want the correct content, so for me, the decision is easy.
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Old September 1st, 2009, 06:33 AM   #12
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Again guys,
thanks for your contributions and feedback. Much appreciated.

Best,
David.
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