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XDCAM .mov footage - a field issue?

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Deirdre O'Lavery
XDCAM .mov footage - a field issue?
on Mar 1, 2011 at 8:53:12 pm

I asked about this over in the Sony Vegas forum, but it was recommended that I ask here as well:

Hi everyone~

I have a project with XDCAM footage, with the following properties:

Format: Calibrated XDCAM-EX 1080p30
1920x1080x24
Progressive
Pixel Aspect: 1.0

The problem I am having is when I render out the show for DVD. I made a DVD screener and viewed it on my TV. I get very hard jagged edges on objects such as furniture, or buzzing on detailed items, such as ornate patterns and such (on clothing, etc) within the XDCAM scene, so I am assuming it is a field issue.

I've tried rendering out with various field settings (lower, then upper, then progressive) all resulting in the same kind of jagged edges and noisy footage.

This is the first time I have worked with XDCAM footage, so I don't have any prior experience with the format. Furthermore, the footage was given to me in .mov format. Since I am PC based, I had to purchase the Calibrated Q XD codec in order to get the footage to play on my system.

I checked with the client to see if they had the original BVAP folders instead, but he had dumped them and only has the .mov's. I don't seem to have the problem with the native XDCAM .mp4 footage, only the .mov footage.

So far, the only solution I have found (which was the result of 2 days of trial and error)is to render the .mov clips out to NTSC lower-field (in my case, .avi), then import those and re-render them out as progressive. This helped clean up the field stuff for the most part, but there is still some buzzing/edge issues. It's a ridiculous amount of work to do this, so I'm wondering if anyone has any suggestions or experienced similar issues.

Thanks
Deirdre


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Craig Seeman
Re: XDCAM .mov footage - a field issue?
on Mar 1, 2011 at 9:51:39 pm

[Deirdre O'Lavery] "I checked with the client to see if they had the original BVAP folders instead, but he had dumped them and only has the .mov's. I don't seem to have the problem with the native XDCAM .mp4 footage, only the .mov footage."

Clients who toss camera masters are nothing less than fools. That said, the mov is nothing more than the rewrapped .mp4 and some metadata changes obviously. There's no essence change.

The issue is either downscaling and/or field related but you haven't described your workflow in enough to detail to get more than guesses.



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Deirdre O'Lavery
Re: XDCAM .mov footage - a field issue?
on Mar 1, 2011 at 10:59:23 pm

Hi Craig - thanks.

My workflow is as follows:

The .mov clip properties are:

XDCAM-EX 1080p30
1920x1080x24
Field: Progressive
Pixel aspect: 1.0000

I have tried starting off with a timeline in Vegas 9 to match the final output, which would be 720x480, NTSC with the following settings:

Field: Progressive
Frame rate: 29.97 fps
Pixel aspect: 0.9091

I have also tried matching the timeline settings to the .mov clip properties, then rendering out to 720x480 progressive, 0.9091 .avi.

Both yield the same results.

I have further tried rendering different fields first, to see if I noticed any change (which I didn't), as well as adjusting my timeline properties to different deinterlace methods (interpolate, blend, & none). Still, the output looks the same.

When I edited the scene, I had down-converted the clips to 720x480 .avi to edit, since this particular type of .mov doesn't play nice with my system. Then replaced the down-converted clips with the original media before rendering out the final edited scene.

I haven't added any effects or re-sized the footage at all.

Also, I have tried converting to 720x480 mpeg2, with still the same results.

I haven't had any issues with .m2t HDV footage, and it looks like the native XDCAM .mp4 clips for another scene are rendering out just fine, too. It's just this XDCAM .mov that's problematic.

I don't have an HD television, so I am only able to view these on a CRT television, which is where I am noticing the problem. Rendered files look fine when played on my system through Quicktime and WM Player.


Thanks!
Deirdre


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Deirdre O'Lavery
Re: XDCAM .mov footage - a field issue?
on Mar 2, 2011 at 8:39:27 pm

Did some more testing. If I run the XDCAM clips through Adobe Media Encoder (CS4) and output to 720x480 NTSC/lower fields, then render those lower field clips out in Vegas as progressive, the result is much, much better. Of course, I would prefer not to go through the additional generation loss or time spent encoding.

I'm not sure what is happening, or why the above method done within Vegas (rendering the XDCAM mov files out as 720x480 lower field) doesn't yield the same results, but there it is anyway.


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