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Nicholson Baker May 2nd, 2007 03:14 PM

Rendering and viewing hdv files
I'm doing something wrong but I'm failing to see it. I've got the excellent VASST videos 1-3 and Douglas Spotted Eagle's Workshop book.

Here's what I've been doing: I've been shooting 16x9 HDV (on a Canon XHA1 at 60i), splitting the tracks using HDVSplit, and watching what I've imported using VLC player and they look good. That part seems to be working well.

Now, however, I need to cut the footage down and hand over manageable chunks of it to somebody else who may or may not be using Vegas. So I'd like to end up with a portable hard drive full of minimally compressed HD files that are in a format that somebody using FCP or Avid can use--but also files that I can see on my own system. The edited final result--edited by someone other than me--will be for digital projection or film.

Here's what I've been trying today: I render a small region, using an HDV template--HDV 1080-60i intermediate, which includes the Cineform codec--and I get an avi file. (This is Vegas 7, by the way.) The chunk plays fine at reduced resolution in Vegas's Auto Preview. But then: how do I review the new avi I have just created in its full crispness on my monitor to be sure it's the way it should be? VLC player doesn't play it, and it's deformed to the wrong aspect ratio in Windows Media player--also the sound lags.

When I render using the Sony YUV codec, the rendering takes longer, and Windows Media refuses to play it. VLC opens a black screen and plays audio.

Is the problem with my computer--Pentium 4 3ghz with 2gig of ram, NVIDIA Quadro FX, one monitor? Or is it some setting or some box I'm failing to check in the rendering process? Or is there a way to add some plugin to VLC, or to some other player like VLC, or to Windows Media Player, to play the file at full resolution?

I've had no luck with rendering to Quicktime either--black screen with intermittent audio, huge file, long wait. Maybe I don't have it configured properly.

Should I be batch-rendering to two formats?

(By the way, the HDV 1080-60i intermediate dialog box says: "Audio: 48,000 Hz, 16 Bit, Stereo, PCM Uncompressed. Video: 29.97 fps, 1440x1080, Upper field first. Pixel Aspect Ratio: 1.333, using CineForm HDV codec. OpenDML compatible.")

Thank you, all.

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