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HD Downconversion blurry

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Timo Boeck
HD Downconversion blurry
on May 3, 2010 at 11:22:01 am

Hello fellow creativecowers,

For some time now, i have used a Sony EX-3, with which i have shot pretty much everything in 1080i/50 for PAL-SD Projects, which i master on my DVCAM Deck (DSR-1500 w/ SDI-Card).

Previously i used the Decklink HD Extreme V1, but its software downconverter produced a sub-par image, so i had to make a Anamorphic PAL DV timeline in Final Cut and render the cut footage to make it look acceptable.

This obviously took a lot of time, so i was told that the latest HD Extreme Card (V3) has a Hardware Downconverter, which produces Broadcast quality conversion on-the-fly.

After installing and setting up the card i was able to cut my XDCAM EX footage natively in Final Cut and just turn on the hardware converter to downconvert it on-the-fly while mastering to my DVCAM Deck.

The result is still rather bad. The image is blurry and lacks sharpness.

After consulting Blackmagic, i got this answer:
"One reason for the quality you are seeing, may be due to the XDCAM codec, as XDCAM is a predictive codec and removes a lot of quality from the uncompressed video image, which may look worse when down converted. Our down conversion is designed to be the highest possible quality alongside the down conversion offered by some high end decks and vtrs."

Does anyone else have any suggestions, or similar problems?
Should i convert all my material to some other codec before cutting?

Help is very much appreciated.

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