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Old November 8th, 2004, 10:22 PM   #1
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Vegas/FX1 owners - how is HD 1080/60i print-to-tape?

Hi folks!

Wow, now that we have a way to capture using CapDVHS into Vegas 5b for native m2t editing, I am curious to know from our users who have:
FX1
and
Sony Vegas 5b...

if you edit say a slight cross-dissolve and render out timeline to HD-1080 60i setting mpeg, can you successfully "print-to-tape" via CapDVHS (whoops - is it capture only? one way only? There is "WrtDVHS" tab - is that for print-to-tape?) or Sony Vegas back out through firewire to FX1 and then play "edited" HDV on your HDTV's and assess?

Or, failing 1080i, can you do 720p?

Is there a way to "print-to-tape" and if so, how does rendered HDV look compared to what is natively captured on the cam and played out to HDTV?

Working with Kaku footage until I get my cam in my hands, I'm realizing that editing/rendering 1080i mpeg is s-l-o-w but am wondering if it's worth the payoff - I'm curious to know how the Vegas HD rendering engine stands up quality wise to "original" footage...

Gosh golly, it's just like the ol' Hi8 days - carry your cam to the tv and plug it in if you want to watch the home movies, kids...

Well, at least it's not like VHS-C was - insert your teeny-weeny tape into this handy-dandy cassette adaptor right here -- oh, don't forget to check your batteries!

Aha, now I realize that FX1 is not so much about kicking Panasonic's/JVC and Canon's asses as it is about Blu-ray potentially kicking Toshiba's HD-DVD ass...
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Old November 10th, 2004, 02:32 PM   #2
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has anyone tried this yet?

Hi - anyone take this "all the way" yet? just wondering how the rest of the pipeline is working out...

mark
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Old November 12th, 2004, 08:53 AM   #3
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Mark:

The forthcoming Vegas 5 update will be able to render an HDV compliant file, if you have a way to print it to tape.

There's also a deal on ConnectHD for capture/print, and the CFHD codec for more performant editing. Sign up here for an email when it's shipping:

http://mediasoftware.sonypictures.com/products/showproduct.asp?pid=914

Thanks.

///d@
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Old November 12th, 2004, 09:59 AM   #4
 
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'bout time you woke up to smell the rotten garbage, mark. Even with vegas processing improvement, your processor is gonna choke on that beautiful FX1 footage, especially on complicated renders. welcome to reality, dude.
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Old November 12th, 2004, 06:25 PM   #5
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Bill, you're right on the money...

yeah, you know, something's gonna have to give - otherwise, this HDV thing is gonna flop.

Sony figured, okay, let's make it as painless as possible - we'll find a way to put "HD" on mini-dv tape and offer it cheap. Okay, I hafta admit, now that the pro Z1 price is announced, I'm super pumped again. Like who would ever really consider an XL2 now?

HDV on minidv tape is brilliant - so painless. Okay, so true progressive CCD would have maybe been too much moolah, so we'll let you switch to 50i/PAL and let you filmmaker types get your film-look that way...

Brilliant....

But then there's this stupid issue of mpeg2 editing, GOP, frigging I frames, B frames, P frames - and compression, etc.

The company/dude who comes up with a great way to edit mpeg2 HDV transport streams natively in a fashion akin to current mini-dv avi editing will be king. Semi-realtime, without any downconverting or proxy, thank you very much...

This idea of converting over to "virtually lossless" codecs is an extra step and a timewaster. I'm eligible for premiere pro upgrades so I'm gonna wait till next version is released with connect/aspect hd "bundled" - even current $149 Vegas promo seems to me like a bit of a cop out... Man, we shouldn't have to pay "extra" for this.

It's like Canon only making silly EF adaptor for the XL series and leaving it up to third parties to offer viable $499.99 aircraft aluminum rings that any Tom Dick and Larry could machine in a tool and dye shop on a Sunday afternoon with a few beers...

Like, I'm thrilled to peaches that capDVHS works for capture and it's avail. now and it's FREE - that's the way it should be.

Can some enterprising software dude write an app for mpeg2 m2t wavelet compression as freeware this weekend? Interesting side project?

For now, I'd rather edit native mpeg2 and "suffer" for my art. At least I don't have to cough up any more coin...
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Old November 12th, 2004, 07:56 PM   #6
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Connect HD

Mark,

I just posted a thread for the Connect HD beta for Vegas 5. You can try it out if you like. Your framerate should be much higher and your editing more efficient. Furthermore, you wont have to edit a 15 frame GOP mpeg.......

The Beta is good for 15 days.

Regarding your question about laying transport stream back to tape...... I dont think anyone can do that yet, but we're working feverishly on it and should have that feature forthcoming......

Thad H.
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Old November 13th, 2004, 10:05 AM   #7
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Mark: I'd say you're being optimistic to want high-resolution video editing without either making some compromises somewhere or paying a few bucks for tools to get the job done right. The most affordable way to edit HDV effectively today is to use an intermediary codec which allows you to work with HDV on older computers, and this also offers quality advantages over editing the native HDV files. There are programs like Sony Vegas, Ulead MSP and Pinnacle LE6 which can edit native HDV, but they require fast dual-processor computers for good results because of the inherent processing demands of HD MPEG2. And given that the best current output options for HDV are to encode to Windows Media or DivX HD, editing native HDV won't improve your workflow any compared to using the intermediary codecs. If you want the quality advantages of an intermediary codec *and* the benefits of real-time HDV output, you're going to need both a dual-processor computer and the $4000 Canopus SP for HDV package. This stuff doesn't come cheap because we're talking about a lot of data here: the fact that we can do high-resolution video at all without hundreds of thousands of dollars of equipment is a big step in the right direction.
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Old November 13th, 2004, 11:34 AM   #8
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I think the potential for HDV editing is amazing...

Well, let me say that I think that while companies like Cineform and Lumiere seem to have been very responsive to HDV, I'm surprised that some of the "big boys" like Ulead are taking longer than promised - Ulead had hinted in their Sept. press release that their HD plugin would be ready for end of Oct. We're now into mid-November...

It's surprising to see too that freeware/shareware apps like capDVHS steal a bit of the spotlight on the PC side of things - an app designed to capture satellite tv mpeg2 HD streams from decks via firewire turns out to work with the FX1 and current users can at least get their stuff into computer and realize once they try to edit HDV natively that something like Cineform is, to put it in A&E's words, time well spent...

I wonder what Sony had in mind when they figured out this HDV thing - how were they planning on having people edit? Everything about HDV is super fantastic until you get to the editing part. But that's where Cineform comes in - sorry Fred, I'm not a Mac dude - I can't figure them out!

The fact that Cineform is being endorsed by everyone like Adobe and Sony Vegas is a good sign - I guess the trick will be to batch capture your m2t's and let them batch-convert to CFHD and then come back to edit - so that's extra time and extra hard-drive space. Oh well...

Straight cut mpeg2 editors don't allow for important transition effects like dissolves and fades - I guess too that Cineform avi's can be seen by after-effects to allow for further manipulation?

Interesting times ahead, for sure...

My dealer tells me Canopus will have imminent release of low-cost HDV editing solution with Edius - not the Edius HD realtime thing shown at IBC - this is less pricey...
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Old November 13th, 2004, 11:54 AM   #9
 
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There's no denying that HD , in some form, HDV or whatever, is the ultimate solution to hi-quality digitalvideo. No arguments from me there. But, we need more technology development in the form of faster processors, faster memory and faster disk I/O, before HD/HDV makes its way to prosumers at a cost that's doable by a semi-pro or advanced hobbyist. Sure, Lucas has the bucks and resources to make this happen now, but, for the average SOHO professional, it's not on the radar screen. I love the idea of the Sony hardware, just can't convince myself I can produce distributable video.
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Old November 13th, 2004, 11:55 AM   #10
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Mark -- " I guess too that Cineform avi's can be seen by after-effects to allow for further manipulation?"

Yes. The CineForm AVIs can be directly used with After Effects with either Connect HD or Aspect HD products (Prospect HD includes 16bit AE support for CFHD Files.)
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Old November 13th, 2004, 06:37 PM   #11
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This is great news...

Once there is ability via Cineform to go "back out" to HD/HDV on tape so I can at least play back on cam, I will be signing up.

I am confused - promo now for Vegas users - but that's NOT a version that supports FX1? Only beta now avail. for download supports FX1? Gosh, anyone from Cineform give a rough date as to when Connect/Aspect HD supporting FX1 will be final...

Hey, the Connect HD/Aspect HD sounds like the way to go - way to go!
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Old November 13th, 2004, 10:56 PM   #12
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The Connect HD for Vegas promo (for the FX1) will start when the beta peroid is over. Connect HD is basically done, so it will not be long. Also Aspect HD with support for the FX1 will have a public beta very soon. This has been a very busy couple of months.
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Old November 13th, 2004, 11:28 PM   #13
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David, that includes rendering out from Vegas back out to FX1?

Ie. will it be a two-way street? Will one be able to render out a 1080i HDV m2t back out through firewire to the FX1 to "match" what was filmed/captured? To use the cam for playback of "edited" HDV back to say a HDTV?

Cheers!
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Old November 13th, 2004, 11:36 PM   #14
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Yes, that is the plan, but it is also the reason we are still in beta. Writing streams for the Sony HDV camera is much harder than writing transport streams for JVC/DVHS. We are making good progress.
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Old November 14th, 2004, 09:11 AM   #15
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As I understand it, Cineform captures in near real time to the editing codec, so there's no lengthy transcoding process required. Where you will have a time hit is for export of finished projects, which apparently may run as long as 10-20 times the length of your timeline depending on the output format selected. But that's something you can run unattended, so other than tying up a computer overnight that's not as bad as having to wait to get started editing.

Intermediary codecs like Cineform, Canopus and Avid are planning will give us an affordable way to do HDV editing today on fast single-processor computers. For many of us who own old copies of Adobe Premiere, we can get started by paying a mere $150 for the Premiere Pro upgrade with the promised free version of the Cineform plugin. Or you can buy the full Aspect HD bundle with Premiere Pro, Encore and Audition software from Cineform for "only" $1100, which still isn't bad to get started doing high-resolution editing.

Regarding distribution, my brother and I have been reviewing sample footage from the Sony FX1 encoded in the Windows Media format at 720p resolution, and even at only 5 Mbps it looks very nice. This means you can distribute HDV footage today on standard DVDs which can be played back on most recent computers, and also on a recently announced standalone DVD player which costs less than $250. There are some limitations to this solution, but it is workable.
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