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Batch import issue with "Real Time Matte" vs. "A/V clip"

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Jack FrostBatch import issue with "Real Time Matte" vs. "A/V clip"
by on Sep 10, 2009 at 1:09:46 pm

Hi.

I'm working in a 23.98 project and much of the media, shot on P2 cards, had to be converted to quicktimes due to an incorrect frame rate. I used MetaCheater to create an ALE of the Quicktime clips and imported that into my Avid MC 3.5 project. When I batch import, the following dialogue appears:

"This movie contains audio and alpha information.
It can be imported as either a clip with audio and video or as a Real Time Matte."

I have three options:
"1 - Create RT Matte
2 - Create A/V clip
3 - Cancel"

Unfortunately, I discovered this morning after locating about 100 files individually and leaving the system batch import overnight, that only one file had imported and the above message was staring me in the face when I arrived today.

I'm not sure where in the process the clips received alpha information (I did not do the conversion myself), but I'm wondering if there is a way to remove it so that the clip is seen simply as an a/v clip, so that this message does not appear.
Thanks in advance.



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Ra-ey SalehRe: Batch import issue with "Real Time Matte" vs. "A/V clip"
by on Sep 11, 2009 at 1:30:58 am

Unfortunately it sounds like when the original QTs were made they were saved with the Compressor Depth settings set to 'Millions of Colors+' - which tells the Avid that there is an Alpha present even if there is no Alpha in the file.
You either have to re-encode the files, making sure that it is set to 'Millions of Colors' only, so individually import each file.

Ra-ey


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Jack FrostRe: Batch import issue with "Real Time Matte" vs. "A/V clip"
by on Sep 11, 2009 at 1:00:33 pm

Is there any way to figure out which files have an alpha channel before attempting a batch import? Do you know of any shareware that can tell you this information?

Thanks for your response.



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Michael HancockRe: Batch import issue with "Real Time Matte" vs. "A/V clip"
by on Sep 11, 2009 at 1:42:28 pm

If you open the file in Quicktime and hit Cmd+I (Mac) or Ctrl+I (PC) it will open the Movie Inspector. Check under the Format section--if it says Millions+ it thinks it has an alpha. If it just says Millions--it doesn't.

Michael

-------------------------------
I'll be working late.


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Jack FrostRe: Batch import issue with "Real Time Matte" vs. "A/V clip"
by on Sep 11, 2009 at 2:04:30 pm

Great. So now this is the millions+ dollar question...
Can this alpha channel be ignored without problems in the future or any sort of quality loss, or do the files need to be recreated using Millions of colors without an alpha?

thanks.

ps - Avid will sometimes ignore the alpha (i've changed the setting to "Ignore" in my import settings) and sometimes ask me to choose real time matte or a/v clip. It's these inconsistencies that drive me mad. I'd prefer it just behaved badly all the time, or well all the time, so I could get a handle on what is happening.



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Michael HancockRe: Batch import issue with "Real Time Matte" vs. "A/V clip"
by on Sep 11, 2009 at 2:15:50 pm

If there's no audio and you choose to Ignore Alpha, it should import it just fine. If there's video and audio and alpha it needs to know what you want to do--make it an A/V clip, or import with Alpha (losing audio).

You shouldn't lose any quality because it was rendered to Millions+. The alpha is basically full screen so it's not actually trying to cut out any portions of your image. You may have gotten smaller files if they didn't render with an alpha, but otherwise the quality should be the same. I wouldn't bother with re-encoding them. I'd just import and hang out by the desk to hit A/V on clips that need it.

Of course you could always open the files in Quicktime, strip the audio, resave them, import the new files (sans audio) with Ignore Alpha checked, import the audio separately, then resync in Avid, but that's a lot of extra work.

Good luck with it. It's always a pain when you get some footage that's been messed with and messed up.

Michael

-------------------------------
I'll be working late.


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