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Old March 11th, 2009, 09:37 PM   #1
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Vegas Pro 8 & AVCHD camcorder?

Hi,

My much loved HV10's play head just quit on me. I'm deciding whether to stay with tape or go the route of AVCHD camcorders, specifically I want to know how Vegas Pro 8 handles H.264. I was told that importing H.264 files is faster than real time, but in order to edit, those files have to be transcoded to another format that the NLE can use. This is what slows it down a lot. Also, working with H.264 requires more computing power, compared to m2ts files. What do you Vegas users think?

Thanks,
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Old March 11th, 2009, 10:21 PM   #2
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Vegas 8 will edit AVCHD files native at a reduced resolution. On my system, Q9450,8G RAM VIsta 64 it will run at full frame rate at about 720x540 which is more than adequate for most editing. IF you really need to see full resolution my system will slow down to about 10fps!!! skipping frames. Not useful in my mind. I have Cineform Neo and of course this will run at full frame rate. Since my second monitor is a 17" 1280x1024 and the preview screen doesn't fill the screen I see no real difference!!!
I have Sony SR11 and can transfer from the SR11 hard drive to the PC in about 1/4 realtime and this file can be used directly on the Vegas timeline including 5.1 audio. Even transcoding to Cineform is less than 1/2 realtime so the transfer and convert is faster than tape.
IF you decide to go tapeless remember that you need to thing about your backup methodologies. I save on hard drive and for important family videos, two hard drives and DVD and for projects two hard drives and a Bluray disc.

Ron Evans
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Old March 11th, 2009, 10:44 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Ron Evans View Post
Vegas 8 will edit AVCHD files native at a reduced resolution. On my system, Q9450,8G RAM VIsta 64 it will run at full frame rate at about 720x540 which is more than adequate for most editing. IF you really need to see full resolution my system will slow down to about 10fps!!! skipping frames. Not useful in my mind. I have Cineform Neo and of course this will run at full frame rate. Since my second monitor is a 17" 1280x1024 and the preview screen doesn't fill the screen I see no real difference!!!
I have Sony SR11 and can transfer from the SR11 hard drive to the PC in about 1/4 realtime and this file can be used directly on the Vegas timeline including 5.1 audio. Even transcoding to Cineform is less than 1/2 realtime so the transfer and convert is faster than tape.
IF you decide to go tapeless remember that you need to thing about your backup methodologies. I save on hard drive and for important family videos, two hard drives and DVD and for projects two hard drives and a Bluray disc.

Ron Evans
Ron,
I don't have Cineform Neo? How will not having that app affect my editing, with regards to time & quality? So I cannot view my H.264 files at full resolution in Vegas while editing. How about after editing and rendering? Will Vegas output the finished product as H.264? Or any other format(s)? Hard drives are not THAT reliable for long term storage, that's the one thing that worries me.

Thanks,
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Old March 12th, 2009, 07:21 AM   #4
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I just edited a project using AVCHD from a Panasonic camera. The files would not load into Vegas 8.0a. They loaded fine in 8.0c and 8.1, though.

Frame rate preview does drop significantly. Mine was a multi-cam shoot so I rendered out the PIP preview to DV and used that for adding the camera switches. When I created the Master Track, I used the original AVCHD files and then rendered as needed from the original files.
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Old March 12th, 2009, 09:06 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Norris Combs View Post
Ron,
I don't have Cineform Neo? How will not having that app affect my editing, with regards to time & quality? So I cannot view my H.264 files at full resolution in Vegas while editing. How about after editing and rendering? Will Vegas output the finished product as H.264? Or any other format(s)? Hard drives are not THAT reliable for long term storage, that's the one thing that worries me.

Thanks,
IF you are just editing a single track there is no hit in terms of speed or quality that I can see, but I have done this mainly to output to SD DVD . Many believe that the simpler editors from Ulead, Pinnacle or Nero are faster and easier to use than the more pro NLE's like Vegas, Edius or Adobe. I expect the reason is that these pro editors have to decode the AVCHD into a form that they use for editing ( YUV or RGB) and this causes a hit on performance. The simpler editors stay in AVCHD until they have to make a change and then do a render. So for cuts only editing the simpler editors are faster and potentially better. In fact for cuts only editing I would do it "in camera" and play out a playlist, much faster and retains all quality. Most of the new AVCHD cameras allow the creation of at least one playlist for this purpose.
As far as hard drives are concerned---that is why I have two backups!!! They are however very cheap for very big hard drives.

Ron Evans
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Old March 12th, 2009, 09:38 AM   #6
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Cineform Neo is a must have for AVCHD editing with Vegas. It really does make life much better.

http://www.videoguys.com/Brand/CineForm.aspx

Although AVCHD is ‘technically’ supported by the major NLE programs –using it on either platform in a timeline is proving frustratingly slow and problematic. Neo Scene solves this problem for AVCHD and HDV users by converting these HD files to fast, loseless AVI (Windows) or MOV (Mac)

Gary
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Old March 12th, 2009, 01:36 PM   #7
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You know, I really don't have a problem with editing AVCHD in Vegas; I set the video to Preview (Auto) and I get full framerates. If I need to see what the thing looks like full-screen, I just set it to Best (Full) and take the framerate loss.

It's true that you are either going to sacrifice resolution or framerate when editing AVCHD; but Vegas is pretty cool about the way it does it. I edit AVCHD exclusively now and I'm -never- going back to tape.
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Old March 13th, 2009, 06:31 AM   #8
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You know, I really don't have a problem with editing AVCHD in Vegas; I set the video to Preview (Auto) and I get full framerates. If I need to see what the thing looks like full-screen, I just set it to Best (Full) and take the framerate loss.

It's true that you are either going to sacrifice resolution or framerate when editing AVCHD; but Vegas is pretty cool about the way it does it. I edit AVCHD exclusively now and I'm -never- going back to tape.
brian, what version of Vegas are you using ?
I'm having lots of trouble lately with a project thats taken me a few weeks to finish and vegas is refusing to replace all of the SD clips i edited with to HD clips as i used the proxy editing method...
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Old March 13th, 2009, 07:46 AM   #9
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If you're using AVCHD, I recommend either 8.0c or 8.1.
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Old March 15th, 2009, 05:58 AM   #10
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brian, what version of Vegas are you using ?
I'm having lots of trouble lately with a project thats taken me a few weeks to finish and vegas is refusing to replace all of the SD clips i edited with to HD clips as i used the proxy editing method...
8.0c. I use Magic Bullet as well, though I'm kinda weaning myself off of it and going for more stuff using Vegas's built in color correction tools.
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Old March 16th, 2009, 12:20 PM   #11
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8.0c. I use Magic Bullet as well, though I'm kinda weaning myself off of it and going for more stuff using Vegas's built in color correction tools.
I've had SO much trouble editing / importing all of the .mp4 raw files from my camcorder, must be all of the 1080i footage, i'm looking forward to sony bringing out a fix for it, unfortunately for the minute, i don't really know what to do.
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Old April 10th, 2009, 08:42 PM   #12
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Does vegas produce AVCHD renders that look as good as the original footage ?

For example, if I play original footage from the camcorder directly to an large HDTV vs. the same footage trimmed in Vegas then rendered and displayed on the same HDTV ?

I've been using Vegas with HDV tape for years, to my eye's the vegas hdv renders look as good as the original footage.

Does vegas render avchd just as well ?
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