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Old June 24th, 2011, 03:08 AM   #1
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EX1 for DVPAL workflow

Although I have access to two T2i DSLRs I've opted to shoot a TV reality show using two EX1s to capture longer durations without overheating or running out of media space in the middle.

I'm interested to know what workflow I should be using keeping in mind that I have to submit DVPAL masters for broadcast.

I have an i7 2600K machine with 16GB RAM and an Nvidia GTX470 card running windows 7 64-bit with both Sony Vegas Pro 10 and Adobe Premiere Pro CS5 to edit with. I am equally adept at both these NLEs so can use either. Currently I don't have any video hardware like AJA Kona, Decklink, or Matrox - I just have a DVCAM deck with which to make DV masters, and that's what the client has asked for.

I would love to know what workflow I should use and which NLE would be best suited for my needs.

Also, I'll be renting out the EX1 cameras, so would appreciate any suggestions for other cameras that I could use. I also have access to Z1U cameras but think that a tapeless workflow is better and saves time and money.
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Old June 24th, 2011, 07:06 AM   #2
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Re: EX1 for DVPAL workflow

We shoot and edit in HD 1080i50 using Premiere Pro CS5, and then at the end downsize on export to DV PAL. Premiere Pro handles the conversion pretty well, with only really occasional need for blurring clips with thin high-contrast diagonal lines. Your setup seems to be more than enough to handle this kind of editing without any problems.
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Old June 24th, 2011, 09:12 AM   #3
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Re: EX1 for DVPAL workflow

Thanks Bart! Please let me know if the down-conversion is clean and crisp. A lot of people have been complaining that down-conversion without proper hardware gives very bad results. I can't really experiment on it right now since we're hiring the cameras on the day of the shoot! Don't want to be stuck with a sub-standard end result.
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Old June 24th, 2011, 01:19 PM   #4
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Re: EX1 for DVPAL workflow

In my opinion Premiere downconversion is very good, providing you either have CUDA GPU or turn on "render maximum quality", which basically have the same effect. I have found only two instances in my 60 minutes edit where I would apply a slight blur (thin diagonal lines with high contrast) to perhaps get a little better result, but in general we are very happy with it. Even the motion graphics scaled pretty good.
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Old July 7th, 2011, 10:16 AM   #5
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XDCAM EX downconvert results

Okay I have the first batch of XDCAM EX footage (re-wrapped to MXF) and doing a quick downconvert to DV PAL using both Sony Vegas Pro 10 and Media Encoder CS5 gave horrible results!

When I downconvert my Canon T2i footage from HD to DV PAL the result is amazing!

Why then is the XDCAM EX footage so bad when downconverted??? What can I do to remedy this?

I don't have any hardware to downconvert. Only the NLEs and software encoders.
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Old July 7th, 2011, 04:39 PM   #6
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Re: EX1 for DVPAL workflow

Take a look at this:

Getting SD from HD and the problems of oversampling. | XDCAM-USER.COM

This

Getting good SD from an HD camera. | XDCAM-USER.COM

The Canon DSLR's don't have this problem as they have much lower resolution to start with. Shooting 720p50 on an EX often yields better SD results than shooting 1080i50, again due to the lower starting resolution.
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Old July 8th, 2011, 09:09 AM   #7
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Re: EX1 for DVPAL workflow

If you are going to be renting the cameras you also have the option of renting the EX1r and shooting it in SD.

The EX1r has a DVCam mode for SD that the EX1 (original) doesn't have.
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Old July 8th, 2011, 09:25 AM   #8
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Re: EX1 for DVPAL workflow

Anyone compared the quality of EX1r's SD recording, to the EX1's SD-SDI output?
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Old July 9th, 2011, 09:10 AM   #9
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Re: EX1 for DVPAL workflow

Thanks for the resources and links guys. Since I'm using Sony Vegas to edit I'm trying out the "median" filter to soften hard edges in the HD image which is said to improve the downconverted SD image. Lets see how that works out. If anyone already does this I would love to hear which blurring effects and filters and what settings give the best results.

Also, I've found that Vegas Pro 10 also gives the option of saving the edit as Sony MXF which essentially maintains the video specs of the original MXF and simply joins the footage at lightening fast speeds. I just don't know whether this will be of any help because I still end up with an MXF file. Perhaps if I convert the master MXF to DVPAL the results might be better. Not really sure why, but might give it a shot.

Another friend recommended that I just go out and by a Decklink card, but unless i have a DVCAM or HDV deck with an SDI input it just doesn't make sense. Any recommendations on what hardware would be best suited for this kind of work (HD to SD)?

Frankly, I don't even understand why clients ask for HD shoots and camera setups when everything here runs on SD. They don't seem to understand that the downconversion kills quality.
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