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Old January 24th, 2008, 06:29 AM   #1
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Best vs good, etc.

I've seen the posts in the past regarding this matter, but I can't find them, so I'll start a thread!

I've used a smattering of films effects and mixed in photos here and there in this project.

For the finest results when I render will using Best vs Good make any difference? 32 bit vs 8 bit? two pass? How about all three at once?

I am using all three settings and what normally takes my 90 minute project 40 minutes to render is now showing 9 hours to complete. Wow!

I might have time to allow it to finish, I am just trying it out as an experiment.

I do recall reading something about best setting being ideal for photos, but what about two pass? And does using thirty-two bit setting affect quality of an SD project?

Thanks for any feedback, going to bed and let the project cook for awhile.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 08:59 AM   #2
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Jeff, here's an old post (by "Dr. Dropout". one of the Sony guys) about the various render settings.
I realize it doesn't answer all your questions but it's a start.

Different conversion algorithms are used for the different video rendering quality options, (which you choose from Render as>[format]>custom>project.) You'll have the option of draft, preview, good, best.

Quality: Best
Scaling: bi-cubic/integration
Field Handling: on
Field Rendering: on (setting dependent)
Framerate Resample/IFR: on (switch dependent)

Quality: Good
Scaling: bi-linear
Field Handling: on
Field Rendering: on (setting dependent)
Framerate Resample/IFR: on (switch dependent)

Quality: Preview
Scaling: bi-linear
Field Handling: off
Field Rendering: off
Framerate Resample/IFR: always off

Quality: Draft
Scaling: point sample
Field Handling: off
Field Rendering: off
Framerate Resample/IFR: always off

------------------------------
Scaling:
------------------------------

These methods come into play when conforming sources that differ from the output size. They are also used when panned, cropped or resized in track motion.

Bi-Cubic/Integration - Best image resizing algorithm available in Vegas. Quality differences will be most noticeable when using very large stills or stretching small sources.

Bi-linear - Best compromise between speed and quality. This method will produce good results in most cases.

Point Sampling - Fast but produces poor results.


------------------------------
Field Handling:
------------------------------

This refers to the field conformance stage of Vegas's video engine. This includes Interlaced to Progressive conversion, Interlaced to interlaced output when scaling, motion or geometric Video FX and Transitions are involved. Skipping this stage can sometimes result in bad artifacts when high motion interlaced sources are used.


---------------------------------
Field Rendering:
---------------------------------

When the output format is interlaced, Vegas will internally render at the field rate (twice the frame rate) to achieve smooth motion and FX interpolation.

---------------------------------
Frame Rate Resample / IFR (Interlace Flicker Reduction):
---------------------------------

Frame Rate Resample:

This kicks in when speed changes are made through Velocity Envelopes and/or event stretching. In can also be used when up-converting low frame rate sources. This only kicks in if the resample switch is turned on _and_ quality is set to good or best.

Interlace Flicker Reduction:

This kicks in if the event switch is turned on and quality is set to good or best. See Vegas' documentation for a description of this switch.

Vegas will bypass any or all of these potentially expensive processing stages if the resulting output won't be affected by the process (e.g. no-recompress pass-through, field render bypass when settings don't change and so on ...). Differences in the output between different quality settings may not always be noticeable, but that largely depends on various attributes of the source media being used. If you want to see some of these differences first hand, trying using extremely large or small sources or high-motion interlaced shots with extreme pan/crop operations.

Please note that you should never render your final project using anything other than good or best when interlaced sources are involved unless the project only contains cuts. If preview quality is used, the resulting video will vary between acceptable to disastrous depending on your project and its media content.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 10:51 AM   #3
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Thanks Mike. I appreciate the trouble you took to assist.

And you're right, it didn't answer my question.

This is not a big deal.

Just trying some setting for kicks, we'll see how it turns out.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 11:18 AM   #4
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Jeff, I'll try answering some of your questions based on my experiences.

For the finest results when I render will using Best vs Good make any difference?

Since I got my quad core last year, I use Best for all my renders.
Most of my work uses a lot of stills so, IMO, this helps.

32 bit vs 8 bit?

I've tried 32-bit and do find that colour & picture quality look better in 32-bit.
The manual says that it "can prevent banding from compositing that contains, fades, feathered edges, or gradients".
Don't try it on an HDV render though as a lot of folks have said that it crashes Vegas instantly :-(
Be advised that it doesn't work on all FX.
A special icon will appear in FX that don't support this feature.
Page 249 on the Vegas Pro 8 manual covers this in more detail.

two pass?

I generally use this with less than optimal footage as it helps the encoder do it's thing better.

How about all three at once?

If you have a fast computer, sure, why not?

...now showing 9 hours to complete. Wow!

Wow is right. I suspect 32-bit is the culprit here as I've done renders with the other two and, while they slow it down, it's not that much.

Last edited by Mike Kujbida; January 24th, 2008 at 07:30 PM.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 11:51 AM   #5
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Thanks a ton, Mike. Your experience is most helpful.

Since I've had my quad core I had not even considered using best or two-pass because I was conditioned in the past to try and cut render times down, not extend them.

You are exactly right about the 32 bit being the culprit, I stopped the render, resumed under 8-bit setting with two-pass and Best enabled and it was done in much less time. It highly suspect that the benefits with SD footage might not be worth it. After all, I am not producing fine cinema, but wedding videos, modeling portfolios and very modest corporate projects.

I too will begin to render using best since I use stills a lot, and I know 2-pass cannot hurt. If I'm in a hurry I'll just skip the fancy settings and go for it.

I really appreciate your post, got right to the heart of it, at least in my case.

Thanks again!
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Old January 24th, 2008, 03:05 PM   #6
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Hello Jeff,

I'll throw out my little bit of experience with these. Best vs. good depends on what your source and final is. I shoot HDV and render to MPEG2 for DVD's. I find that best yields much better results since I'm basically resizing everyframe. The render times are about twice as long.

For final outpouts I always use two pass unless I can get a constant bitrate to fit onto the DVD. Two pass has given me a lot better results especially in high motion scenes. Again though, renders take twice as long.

32bit vs. 8 bit for me is stil out to the jury. I have done a few 32 bit but there are also alot more issues surrounding maintainng broadcast spec. there's a pretty good discussion by Glenn Chan here:

http://dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=112738

I do see some improvements using 32bit but my render times went way crazy. I'm in the process of letting my machine render a 2 hour video using 32 bit, two pass, best. Keep in mind it's not a quad core machine but the estimated time was over 18hours. This video is of a dance show so the crazy spot lights, super saturated colored outfits, and fast motion warrant using this type of render setup. I'm also using a lot of color correction plugins since it was a multicamera shoot and I needed to do something to almost every shot to get the colors to match. With the 32 bit I hope everyting turns out ok. My scopes say that everything is still within broadcast safe but I'll shoot myself if I missed something.

Mike, I have renderd using 32 bit to HDV without problems. Maybe I'm just one of the lucky ones.

Just for referece, in Vegas I work with CineForm Itermediate AVI's (progressive converted using the High setting). This seems to give the best results when going to SD DVD's.

Just my own experience but I'm sure there are others who have had different result.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 06:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
32bit vs. 8 bit for me is stil out to the jury. I have done a few 32 bit but there are also alot more issues surrounding maintainng broadcast spec.
It's not really about maintaining broadcast spec as it is getting the levels correct. And you need to check this no matter what your output format is (e.g. web streaming, stills, etc. etc.).
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Old January 24th, 2008, 06:19 PM   #8
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What is two pass rendering?
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Old January 24th, 2008, 06:29 PM   #9
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32bit confusion

boy is this a mystery, firstly I always use best, I don't see why you would use anything less unless maybe your in a high turn over environment and the material quality wouldn't benefit from a higher quality.
2nd, 32 bit does really blow out the render times, and I've done it with HDV now, but I'm still not sure if I'm doing it right, even though I've read all Glenns articles and had many various people help me on the forum. No crashes with 720 50p HDV, just slow.
Out of curiosity I rendered the same 1 minute of video 4 times and put it onto a DVD, I did 32bit with linear light, 32bit with 2.222 video, 8bit with the studio RGB selected, and 8bit without the colour management selected. And to be honest the 32bit looked less saturated which was curious as it looks richer on the monitors??
I do remember that Glenn said which settings to set for each format, though most people deliver their product on a SD DVD, so you'd expect to see some improvement, so that was a mystery, maybe the only benefit is when you deliver at HD??
It also in my mind, maybe because my workflow through lack of experience hasn't been optimised yet, causes things to slow down, and that is, I would like to do my colour correction on clips before compiling them on a current job I have, I'm waiting for the client to give me a defined outline of what they want their DVD to be marketed towards. Whilst waiting I'm compiling the footage into projects under different categories, and would like to colour correct them so when they decide, the process will be quick, but that can't happen in 32bit, you need like a super computer to do so, my quadcore and 2Gb of RAM just doesn't cut it. So it's like a bit of a tease for me.

Oh well
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Old January 24th, 2008, 07:29 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen Sobel View Post
What is two pass rendering?
If you choose the Custom option when you're going to do a render from Vegas and click the Video tab, it's an option if you select variable bit rate instead of constant bit rate. The encoder then analyzes your files before encoding them. It also increases your render times :-(
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Old January 24th, 2008, 07:32 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garrett Low View Post
Mike, I have rendered using 32 bit to HDV without problems. Maybe I'm just one of the lucky ones.
Thanks Garrett. I just tried it on my system and it didn't crash either.
I'm positive that it was a complaint but it looks like 8.0b fixed it :-)
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Old January 24th, 2008, 07:40 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Kujbida View Post
If you choose the Custom option when you're going to do a render from Vegas and click the Video tab, it's an option if you select variable bit rate instead of constant bit rate. The encoder then analyzes your files before encoding them. It also increases your render times :-(
Thanks! I hadn't heard that phrase before.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 10:36 PM   #13
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Quote:
Out of curiosity I rendered the same 1 minute of video 4 times and put it onto a DVD, I did 32bit with linear light, 32bit with 2.222 video, 8bit with the studio RGB selected, and 8bit without the colour management selected. And to be honest the 32bit looked less saturated which was curious as it looks richer on the monitors??
I do remember that Glenn said which settings to set for each format, though most people deliver their product on a SD DVD, so you'd expect to see some improvement, so that was a mystery, maybe the only benefit is when you deliver at HD??
Hmm I'm not sure what's happening. There's a lot of variables and I don't think you provided all the information.

2- I'm not sure where you are selecting studio RGB ("studio RGB selected"); I'm not sure what exactly you're referring to.

3- There are multiple conversions going on, and you need to pay attention to all of them.
--Decoder
--(any FX)
--Encoder
--How the preview device is setup (may be multiple conversions/steps there)

4- Would my articles be clearer if they had examples of common situations? Is there some way I could make it clearer?
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Old January 25th, 2008, 12:54 AM   #14
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Glenn - Does the VASST color correction video for Vegas have a section on color matching between cameras? I'm planning on getting it no matter what but if it has some good tricks to being able to color match it would be great.

Also, your right it's not just maintaining Broadcast but from the little that I have had to deal with Broadcast outpout that his just another level of headache for my limitted abilities.

Finally, do you have any suggestions or hints on how to get the best looking colors and levels for live dance shows? There's a lot of movement, very colorfull outfits, and very very uneven lighting. I seem to eaither have to live with some very dark areas or I have some faces and costumes blown out.

Thanks.
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Old January 25th, 2008, 01:02 AM   #15
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Quote:
Glenn - Does the VASST color correction video for Vegas have a section on color matching between cameras? I'm planning on getting it no matter what but if it has some good tricks to being able to color match it would be great.
Yep there is a whole chapter on it.

Quote:
Finally, do you have any suggestions or hints on how to get the best looking colors and levels for live dance shows? There's a lot of movement, very colorfull outfits, and very very uneven lighting. I seem to eaither have to live with some very dark areas or I have some faces and costumes blown out.
1- Don't overexpose! Blown out shots are very hard to match (including with not blown out shots).

And then if you can, setup a system where each camera has similar exposure levels. (In big budget professional shoots, iris is controlled remotely and most of the cameras are the same model and the cameras can be painted/color corrected... that is how they solve these problems.)

2- If you can, you can try to get them to light it for video. Not for the eye, where they have very high contrast lighting (and hard lighting).
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