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blurry resolution in canvas

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Stephanie Scrofaniblurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 4:39:48 pm

I want to compose my project as 4:3. I have a bunch of quicktime clips imported and their aspect ratio is 3:2. When I created a new sequence (aspect ratio 4:3 NTSC, frame size 640 x 480, quicktime compressor DV/DVCPRO NTSC) and rendered my clips in the timeline, the resolution of the clips were really blurry in the canvas. The previous sequence settings were: frame size 1080 x 720, aspect ratio 3:2, H.264 compressor. Do you know what might be causing the blurriness after I changed my settings to 4:3?


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Tom WolskyRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 4:50:43 pm

First, are you looking at the rendered output with the Canvas set to 100%?

Why are you making it 640x480 and then using DV as the compressor? That's really wrong. What are you trying to do?

"The previous sequence settings were: frame size 1080 x 720, aspect ratio 3:2, H.264 compressor."

This is even worse. H.264 is a delivery codec, not a production codec. It should really never be used in the timeline. What kind of frame size is 1080x720?

All the best,

Tom

Class on Demand DVDs "Complete Training for FCP6," "Basic Training for FCS2" and "Final Cut Express Made Easy"
Author: "Final Cut Pro 5 Editing Essentials" and "Final Cut Express 4 Editing Workshop"


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Stephanie ScrofaniRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 5:09:07 pm

Yes, the rendered output is set to 100%. 1080 x 720 is 3:2. I am working with exported vids from after effects. Their aspect ratio is 3:2 (frame size 1080 x 720), delivery codec H.264. Basically, I want to be working within a 4:3 composition, rather than 3:2. Is there a way to do this...? What should I set my sequence settings to?


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Tom WolskyRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 5:12:38 pm

Not the rendered output, the viewing size of the canvas. That's the only time you see the image at correct resolution when the viewer or canvas is set to 100%. Otherwise the display is being scaled.

Who is they? Because that's the frame size and delivery codec that doesn't mean that's what you edit it. You edit in whatever conforms to your media or an appropriate intermediate codec, which H.264 sure as sunset isn't.

3:2 with the correct pixel aspect ratio is 4:3.

What's your media?



All the best,

Tom

Class on Demand DVDs "Complete Training for FCP6," "Basic Training for FCS2" and "Final Cut Express Made Easy"
Author: "Final Cut Pro 5 Editing Essentials" and "Final Cut Express 4 Editing Workshop"


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Stephanie ScrofaniRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 5:22:30 pm

The media I have imported are quick time movies exported from after effects. Codec H.264, dimensions 1080 x 720. I want to be working within a 4:3 composition...but, my sequence adjusted to be 3:2...


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Tom WolskyRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 5:28:41 pm

That's complete the wrong format and codec to be export from AE unless you're exporting a finished product. If you're making the AE you should make it match your media. If everything is coming from AE then use that wacky frame size and ProRes, but if you have to incorporate video in your FCP timeline then your AE comp should match that format exactly. Do you have any media in FCP besides the AE comps? What is it?



All the best,

Tom

Class on Demand DVDs "Complete Training for FCP6," "Basic Training for FCS2" and "Final Cut Express Made Easy"
Author: "Final Cut Pro 5 Editing Essentials" and "Final Cut Express 4 Editing Workshop"


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Stephanie ScrofaniRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 5:45:07 pm

No, the only media I am going to be working with in FCP are these clips exported from after effects...The clips do not have to fit within the 4:3 frame exactly, because I am going to be cropping the compositions of the clips and fitting many small frames into a single composition (similar to 70s style movies...thomas crown affair...). But, I don't want my project to be blurry...


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Tom WolskyRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 5:53:08 pm

I'm guessing the project is too long to be built entirely in an AE comp. Is that the reason you're using FCP? Make your AE comps in a high resolution production codec. Do NOT use H.264 for anything except delivery. Make them in ProRes for instance. Whatever 4:3 size you want for your convenience. I'm assuming you're going straight to the web and not to any standard video format, is that correct? In FCP make your sequence settings match those. Any compositing you do should be done in AE. You have an extremely powerful compositing and motion graphics tools, why are you taking stuff from AE and then comping it in FCP?



All the best,

Tom

Class on Demand DVDs "Complete Training for FCP6," "Basic Training for FCS2" and "Final Cut Express Made Easy"
Author: "Final Cut Pro 5 Editing Essentials" and "Final Cut Express 4 Editing Workshop"


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Stephanie ScrofaniRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 6:32:50 pm

The problem is that I have tons (50 at least) of clips which have already been exported as H.264. We are using Final Cut simply because we are more familiar with it. And, we do want the final product to be in a standard video format. Is going to be impossible to work with H.264 clips in final cut under these circumstances?


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Tom WolskyRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 6:38:03 pm

What standard video format? I'm afraid you absolutely should go back to AE and rebuild the comps at the standard video format size you're going to be working in at a standard frame rate and using a high resolution codec. There is no good way around that.



All the best,

Tom

Class on Demand DVDs "Complete Training for FCP6," "Basic Training for FCS2" and "Final Cut Express Made Easy"
Author: "Final Cut Pro 5 Editing Essentials" and "Final Cut Express 4 Editing Workshop"


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Stephanie ScrofaniRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 6:51:25 pm

Any 4:3 standard video format...


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Tom WolskyRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 7:06:47 pm

You said you are working toward a standard video format? What format is that?



All the best,

Tom

Class on Demand DVDs "Complete Training for FCP6," "Basic Training for FCS2" and "Final Cut Express Made Easy"
Author: "Final Cut Pro 5 Editing Essentials" and "Final Cut Express 4 Editing Workshop"


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Stephanie ScrofaniRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 7:08:54 pm

anything with 4:3 dimensions


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Tom WolskyRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 7:52:24 pm

Help us out here. If you're going to a standard video format as you said you were then the specifications are exact, not anything that's 4:3. What exactly are you trying to do? Where exactly are you trying to get to? How is this thing going to be delivered, viewed, projected, distributed? What's your end product?



All the best,

Tom

Class on Demand DVDs "Complete Training for FCP6," "Basic Training for FCS2" and "Final Cut Express Made Easy"
Author: "Final Cut Pro 5 Editing Essentials" and "Final Cut Express 4 Editing Workshop"


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Stephanie ScrofaniRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 10:07:07 pm

Essentially what we want to do is take these movies that are in the h264 format and be able to work with them on the same FCP timeline. The movies have different dimensions as they of photographs taken horizontally and vertically , 2:3 & 3:2 (stop-motion sequences)...I understand that h264 was not the best choice to go out of AE but that is what i am working with. I guess my main question is there a sequence setting or something that I can do that would allow me to work with both size movies in the same timeline. Eventually the project would be something that would be of a 4:3 standard size, not particularly for the web. A possibility would be that the final output would be projected on a large screen or on widescreen television we simply are not sure yet. We just need a canvas on which we can work with so to speak.


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Tom WolskyRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 10:22:50 pm

If you have any aspirations to put this on television or project it on a large screen start over and do it right. There is no way on earth you can now work this material and make it look decent. If you continue to work with this media it's going to be garbage. GIGO.



All the best,

Tom

Class on Demand DVDs "Complete Training for FCP6," "Basic Training for FCS2" and "Final Cut Express Made Easy"
Author: "Final Cut Pro 5 Editing Essentials" and "Final Cut Express 4 Editing Workshop"


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David Roth WeissRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 10:25:07 pm

Tom,

I must commend you on your patience.

David

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, and Indie Film & Documentary forums.


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Bill DewaldRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 10:06:33 pm

Final Cut does a bad job at scaling. This quality loss is compounded by your H.264 format.

Also, what is the timebase of your footage? Since your source was 1280x720, was it 720p? If so, using a FCP sequence to change the timebase will be a hot mess.

The best way to maintain quality would be to deliver the correct format from After Effects.



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Bill DewaldRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 25, 2009 at 4:59:47 pm


So you were editing 640x480 clips in a HD sized 1280x720 H.264 timeline, and now you've changed your sequence settings and things are blurry in the canvas.

How could they not be blurry?

#1 - The canvas is for preview only - it is not representative of your video.

#2 - H.264 is not an editing format.

#3 - the DV framesize is 720x480.

#4 - moving clips from an HD sequence to a SD sequence can cause all sorts of scaling and aspect problems.

etc, etc, etc

Keep it simple - Use the DV easy setup, acquire your footage with that easy setup, edit in that easy setup, and finish in that easy setup.


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Alan OkeyRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 27, 2009 at 1:54:56 am

If having the AE clips re-rendered and output in an editing-friendly codec is not an option, use Compressor to transcode all of your h.264 source clips to ProRes. Final Cut will choke on h.264 clips.

The h.264 standard is an MPEG-4 codec designed for delivery, not editing. MPEG-based codecs use interframe compression, which compresses groups of frames together, making it difficult to edit video footage with single-frame accuracy. Video compressed with an intraframe codec needs to first be transcoded to an editable format in order to be edited. HDV is an MPEG-2 based intraframe codec that falls into this category. This is why a very powerful computer is needed to edit HDV, because the clips need to be transcoded behind the scenes in real time into an editable form. H.264 is even worse because it does not have a constant bit rate or GOP (group of pictures) structure, making it impossible to edit.

The "editing" codecs that others have referred to all utilize intraframe compression, in which each frame is compressed separately. This preserves the ability to easily make frame-accurate edits.

By transcoding your h.264 clips to an editing codec, you make it possible for Final Cut Pro to edit them easily. Suggested editing codecs include ProRes, DV, DVCPRO, DVCPRO 50, M-JPEG, DVCPRO HD or 10-bit Uncompressed.



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Stephanie ScrofaniRe: blurry resolution in canvas
by on Mar 31, 2009 at 6:45:09 pm

Thank You Alan, that was very helpful. Right now I am changing all my compositions in AE to 2k and rendering everything in the ProRes codec.


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