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Old May 22nd, 2005, 12:29 PM   #1
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DVFilm Maker output back to 16:9

I recently purchased DVFilm Maker, and I've been happy with it. I'm using an Optura 50, and like shooting in 16:9. I also use TMPGEnc to convert to MPEG2.

If you use Maker, you've noticed that it Letterboxes the 16:9 into a 4:3 file.

I found this info at http://www.mediachance.com/dvdlab/Helppro/aspect.htm - which goes into a little detail about using TMPGEnc to adjust settings to crop a 4:3 image to mock anamorphic image.

[quote]Here is how to set the encoding in TMPGenc Plus software encoder:
Start with an NTSC DVD template which creates 720x480 MPEG-2 video. On the Video setting screen, select Aspect ratio 16:9 Display. This will set the flag to be 16:9 so thath the DVD player knows that it has to stretch the image. In the Advanced tab in settings, set the Video arrange method to Full Screen (no matter what it will stretch the image to full screen) and then in the filters below select Clip frame. Double-click on it and in the Clip frame tab set Top 60 and Bottom 60. The "Size after clipping" value should now should read 720x360 pixels.[quote]

So I'm basically cropping out the black bars added by Maker, in an effort to make the player to the letterboxing if needed (I want to be able to fill the screen on 16:9 televisions, or have DVD players letterbox on 4:3).

I've tried it and it works fine. But it's almost as though part of the "Filmlook" effect is reduced. I have a couple theories and ideas. It's still very passable, and I'm probably only complaining because I'm a bit of a perfectionist.

Has anyone done this, tried this, or have a solution or seen what I'm talking about?
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Old May 22nd, 2005, 01:42 PM   #2
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Maybe I'm confused if what you're asking? However, if you have anamorphic widescreen footage and you process it with DVfilmMaker, you don't need to do anything special. Just treat it as though it's 4:3. DVfilm will do all its processing and the output file will be 4:3, but in reality it's still anamorphic 16:9. So all you need to do is tell your NLE software that this is anamorphic footage. I'm on the Mac with FCP, and in this case it just involves a checkbox in the clip's properties. Don't use DVfilm's letterbox function unless you want to throw away some resolution and create a 4:3 letterboxed version.

I work with a lot of native 16:9 footage and this is what I've always done with DVfilm Maker. Assuming that you have good anamorphic widescreen footage to begin with, you don't want to letterbox it with DVFilm; you'll be throwing away 120 lines of vertical resolution in doing so.
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Old May 22nd, 2005, 07:53 PM   #3
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I'm using the Windows version, so I don't know what options you are presented with in the Mac version.

I'm giving the following options when I begin with 16:9 footage...

"Squeeze 16:9 to Letterbox"
"Crop 4:3 to Letterbox"
"No Letterbox"

It sounds like I was confused that Maker didn't like dealing with 16:9, unless it could letterbox - to be honest I didn't even think of trying the "No Letterbox" option. I'll try again with the "No Letterbox" option and using the process you mention.
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Old May 22nd, 2005, 08:06 PM   #4
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Yes, this is the same as the Mac version. Just choose "no letterbox" to maintain your anamorphic 16:9 clips. As I said, you will probably have to manually flag these as anamorphic in your editing software. Can't help with that on the PC, but it shouldn't be too hard to figure out.
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Old May 22nd, 2005, 08:27 PM   #5
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It works the same in Windows. Just treat the 16:9 clip like a 4:3 clip, then reset the properties when you bring it back into your editor.

For anyone using Vegas with a Windows PC, Vegas 6 does the finest 25P from 60i I have ever seen! They've changed the frame rate conversion algorythm and things like 25P and PAL renders are just wonderful now! They blow DVFilm and DVFilm Atlantis away! I've been doing 24P 16:9 renders from letterboxed 4:3 footage that are better than I'd thought were possible.
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Old May 23rd, 2005, 06:10 AM   #6
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Just a note: I use my NLE for basic editing, effects -> DVFilm Maker -> TMPGEnc for MPEG2 encoding (it's the only MPEG2 encoder I like).

I tried the "No Letterbox" option, and told TMPGEnc to encode 16:9, and that the source file was actually 16:9. Voilą! The results produced the anamorphic 16:9 as you expected.

However, I think I've still got to fiddle settings in TMPGEnc. There's a setting where you tell TMPGEnc if the source footage is "Film" or "Video" - but it looks like this translates to the "3:2 pulldown during playback" option. I left this setting at "Video" as my Maker output is actually only 24p motion simulated within 23.970 fps video.

I think it has something to do with TMPGEnc interlacing the frame during the encoding. Something about the motion just isn't as nice looking as telling Maker to letterbox in 4:3 and encoding this 4:3 file to MPEG2.

If anyone uses the Maker -> TMPGEnc route on the PC, I'd like to hear what kind of settings they use.
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Old May 23rd, 2005, 01:07 PM   #7
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Yes, this is exclusively what I do. You want to tell TMPGenc that the footage is Film/Progressive 16:9, output to 16:9, 720x480, 23.976fps, 3:2 pulldown on playback, 10bit DCT precision, Highest Quality motion search, and whatever bitrate you want to work with.

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Old May 23rd, 2005, 03:26 PM   #8
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Sorry - I made a typo in my previous reply, my footage is staying at 29.970fps (simulated 24p) through the entire process. Meaning, my source footage is 30fps.

Joshua - perhaps you realized this was a typo already. I just want to clarify... is your source video 24p or 30fps?

If your source is 30fps, would you still want to do the 3:2 pulldown when playback option?

Either way, I'll probably give it a shot later on.

The TMPGEnc Wizard help, for video sorce settings states defines the "Film" (3:2 pulldown when playback) setting as "The source consists only from film movie(substantially 24fps). This mode can be used for 29.97fps interlaced file movie."

I didn't know if "This mode can be used for 29.97fps interlaced file movie" was a typo - as I've noticed that TMPGEnc and the program itself has some language translation issues.

Thanks again for all the replies.
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Old May 23rd, 2005, 05:38 PM   #9
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If your source is 30p, you do not want to add pulldown. I convert from 60i to 24p very earlier in my workflow, and work with 24p all the way through to DVD, so I need the pulldown on playback.

May I ask, why buy DVFilm Maker if you will use it only for 60i to 30p conversion? Most cameras have a "frame" mode that will give a fairly similar effect for free (not as good quality, maybe, but free).

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Old May 23rd, 2005, 05:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joshua Provost
May I ask, why buy DVFilm Maker if you will use it only for 60i to 30p conversion? Most cameras have a "frame" mode that will give a fairly similar effect for free (not as good quality, maybe, but free).
The Optura 50 does not have such a mode. DVFilm Maker was my best option for the 24p "look" - overall it provides the feel that I'm looking for.

It only seems to manifest in the following scenario...

Anamorph 16:9 -> DVFilm Maker -> Reflag to 16:9 in TMPGEnc -> MPEG2

It just seems like motion is a tiny amount more fluid (ala video) thus loosing the 24p effect, compared to DVFilm Maker doing the letterboxing for me.
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Old May 23rd, 2005, 09:04 PM   #11
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Anthony,

So, are you using the "Use 24p Film Motion" checkbox? If you are going out to DVD, it's better to use the Pre-Edit Convert 60i to 24p with 23.976 exact output options. Then encode at 23.976 progressive. You are wasting a lot of bits encoding a 29.97 file that has pulldown in it.

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Old May 24th, 2005, 12:44 AM   #12
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I tried some various options in both DVFilm Maker and TMPGEnc earlier, I am pretty satisfied I have addressed my anamorphic + "look" issues that I started this thread about. And yes, I am traditionally using the "Use 24p Film Motion" checkbox.

I'm not sure, but I think you may misunderstand what I'm saying. I don't think any of my files really have any pulldown in them. I made a mention that TMPGEnc (in the wizard) has an option called "Film Movie" which seems to manifest in the advanced settings as "3:2 pulldown". I tried that in one of my experiments and didn't notice any visible difference (other than wasting bits probaby, as you mentioned). But it's not something I'm using at all really.

But I'm curious now about the last approach you mentioned, and I want to make sure my path is optimal. I tried the Maker Pre-Edit Convert portion - with exact output option, which leaves me with a 23.976 .mov file. That's where I lose you... Where do I encode this .mov file at 23.976 progressive at? This is generally where I'd go to TMPGEnc and it doesn't like .mov files.

Either way I think I've came up with a solution I'm happy with having spent most of the day playing around with Maker/TMPGEnc. But I'm willing to explore the Pre-Edit to 23.976 option as I am going to DVD ... I just need to understand how to get around the .mov to TMPGEnc issue.

I have a few other Editors that will output to MPEG2, but I don't really like their MPEG2 encoders as much as TMPGEnc.
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Old May 24th, 2005, 01:39 AM   #13
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Anthony,

If you use the "Use F24p Film Motion" option, it is converting to 24p, then back to 60i, including what amounts to "hard-coding" the 2:3 pulldown in the file. It's a lot of wasted bits.

Also, when you take it into TMPGenc, you do want to treat it as interlaced footage, because it has been deinterlaced to 24p and reinterlaced back to 60i.

There is a free plug-in out there so TMPGenc can read .mov files, BTW.

Let's start over and think about your workflow. What NLE are you using? The best scenario is to convert 60i to 24p (23.976 exact) prior to editing. Edit in your NLE in a 24p timeline. Do all your color correction, effects, and all that good stuff on the full frames. Output a 24p final movie. Encode in TMPGenc as 24p progressive, with the flag to add 2:3 pulldown on playback.

The advantage of this is you can accurately edit with full frames, your transitions, effects, and all that will look better, and TMPGenc can encode full frames, which is more efficient, and the full bitrate can be used on 24 frames instead of 60 fields.

This is basically the workflow I use everyday, with a combination of Premiere Pro 1.5, DVFilm Maker, and TPMGenc, with great results.

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Old May 24th, 2005, 09:26 AM   #14
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Good info. I wasn't aware of the Quicktime reader plugin for TMPGEnc, which in and of itself is good to know.

I'll burn some more examples using the flow you mention to compare the aesthetics - see them firsthand.

Thanks again.
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