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Somes questions about the HVX-200

COW Forums : Panasonic HVX - HPX (P2)

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PaulJBisSomes questions about the HVX-200
by on Mar 20, 2007 at 11:15:34 pm

Hi all:

I'm a video editor who has recently started working with footage captured with the HVX-200 (I'm in PAL-land, FWIW), and I have some doubts about it:

1) First of all: this may sound bizarre, but... when recording to DV tapes (NOT P2 cards) and in SD, does the HVX-200 capture progressive frames? (i.e., the footage may have 2 fields, but they are identical). A freelance editor my company works with came today complaining that we had given him tapes shot in progressive mode with this camera and that they had messed with his workflow (don't ask me how). We opened the captured Quicktime files, and sure enough, they looked progressive, without interlacing artifacts... but this is honestly news to me. I though SD DV was always lower-field first?

2) On the subject of non-standard frame rates in DVCPRO HD: after searching this forum, my understanding is that, in order to show slow-motion, you have to shoot first in (say) 50/60fps, and then use Panasonic's frame rate converter to convert it to a "standard" frame rate, so that the footage will look "slowed down" when imported to FCP. (Otherwise, when imported, FCP will just play the footage at the original 50/60fps, without any slow motion).

2a) Am I right in the above, or am I misunderstanding something?
2b) Considering that Panasonic's frame rate converter only converts to 24, 30 or 60fps, what can those of us in PAL-land (25fps) do?


Thanks in advance,

Paulo.



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Shane RossRe: Somes questions about the HVX-200
by on Mar 20, 2007 at 11:29:08 pm

[PaulJBis] "1) First of all: this may sound bizarre, but... when recording to DV tapes (NOT P2 cards) and in SD, does the HVX-200 capture progressive frames?"

You mean, does it record 24PA? Not sure...never shot on tape.

[PaulJBis] "2) On the subject of non-standard frame rates in DVCPRO HD: after searching this forum, my understanding is that, in order to show slow-motion, you have to shoot first in (say) 50/60fps, and then use Panasonic's frame rate converter to convert it to a "standard" frame rate, so that the footage will look "slowed down" when imported to FCP. (Otherwise, when imported, FCP will just play the footage at the original 50/60fps, without any slow motion)."

Yup...that's how you do it. And only 720p offers this, not 1080. But the result is VERY nice.

[PaulJBis] "2b) Considering that Panasonic's frame rate converter only converts to 24, 30 or 60fps, what can those of us in PAL-land (25fps) do?"

Ah...I think you can use Compressor for this task. Because I don't think Cinema Tools even handles 50fps. That is a problem.



Shane

Littlefrog Post
http://www.lfhd.net


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PaulJBisRe: Somes questions about the HVX-200
by on Mar 20, 2007 at 11:49:23 pm

Thanks for your answer. About the first question: as it tends to happen, right after I posted it I found a possible answer in the manual. My copy of it talks about "576i/25P" mode, says that it is activated in the REC FORMAT option of the RECORDING SETUP menu, and explains that it captures progressive images that are converted to 50 fields when outputting and recording. Sounds like it... but it doesn't say whether this applies to tape or P2 recording.

As for the second: Compressor? I could try, but wouldn't Compressor just discard one of every 2 frames and end up with a 25fps file at standard speed? And even if it worked, wouldn't it imply reencoding the DV stream and losing quality? It looks to me that one wouldn't need to touch the footage itself at all; the only thing necessary would be a program to edit the header of the container file (MXF or QT) to change the frame rate (you don't change the stream of frames, you just tell the app to play it at half the speed), but my impression is that Compressor will instead recompress everything again.



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Shane RossRe: Somes questions about the HVX-200
by on Mar 20, 2007 at 11:56:08 pm

Hmmm...true about compressor. The Cinema Tools CONFORM slows the footage down. But does it destructively, meaning it alters the clip, it doesn't make a new one.

If I worked with PAL, I'd know more.


Shane

Littlefrog Post
http://www.lfhd.net


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Jan Crittenden LivingstonRe: Somes questions about the HVX-200
by on Mar 21, 2007 at 10:18:24 am

[PaulJBis] "1) First of all: this may sound bizarre, but... when recording to DV tapes (NOT P2 cards) and in SD, does the HVX-200 capture progressive frames? (i.e., the footage may have 2 fields, but they are identical). A freelance editor my company works with came today complaining that we had given him tapes shot in progressive mode with this camera and that they had messed with his workflow (don't ask me how). We opened the captured Quicktime files, and sure enough, they looked progressive, without interlacing artifacts... but this is honestly news to me. I though SD DV was always lower-field first?"

Yes the camera can record in progressive mode either in SD or HD, it is a choice that one makes through the menus.

[PaulJBis] "2) On the subject of non-standard frame rates in DVCPRO HD: after searching this forum, my understanding is that, in order to show slow-motion, you have to shoot first in (say) 50/60fps, and then use Panasonic's frame rate converter to convert it to a "standard" frame rate, so that the footage will look "slowed down" when imported to FCP. (Otherwise, when imported, FCP will just play the footage at the original 50/60fps, without any slow motion)."

All one would have to do is to select the PN modes in the recording stages. Then they could choose a frame rate for the shot and no frame rate converter would be necessary. For example you are shooting in 720/25PN and you want to slow mo, so you choose 50 frames as the frame rate. That is what it records but it is tagged as a 25P clip, so when it is imported into the edit system and is put on the time line it is slo-mo.

[PaulJBis] "2a) Am I right in the above, or am I misunderstanding something?
2b) Considering that Panasonic's frame rate converter only converts to 24, 30 or 60fps, what can those of us in PAL-land (25fps) do? "


Perhaps Apple reworked the Frame Rate Converter and it is on the upgrade disk to use as a plug-in? I habe heeard that with the most current version the Frame Rate Converter from our website is not seen by FCP. A quick look through the Appl CDs and there is one there. Don't know if it works for PAL, as I am not in PAL land. But the shooting method above works in PAL land for sure.

Hope this helps,

Jan



Jan Crittenden Livingston
Product Manager, DVCPRO, DVCPRO50, AG-DVX100
Panasonic Broadcast & TV Systems



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PaulJBisRe: Somes questions about the HVX-200
by on Mar 21, 2007 at 3:30:08 pm

Thanks a lot for your answer. Today we tested it with our camera operator, and it indeed works this way.

Now, this might be off-topic, but just as a curiosity: what problem could there possibly be when importing 2 SD tapes (one progressive, one interlaced) into Avid? The freelance guy I mentioned above complained to us that we had given him a progressive tape and an interlaced one, and that due to that, he had had field dominance problems when importing that had caused delays in his project and blah blah blah. I've been thinking about it and, in theory, there shouldn't be any problem at all: the interlaced tape would be captured correctly and the progressive one too (since it really has 2 fields). The only possible problem that I can see would be if he had set the field dominance wrong in the first place, but the fact that we had given him mixed tapes shouldn't be a factor either way. Am I right or did I miss something?





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