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The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?

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Patrick Kilchermann
The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?
on Nov 13, 2013 at 3:31:58 pm

hello friends,

I need your help… I've produced four DVD projects now, with two of them being multiple discs. They certainly don't look Hollywood quality, but they don't look terrible either. These are standard definition DVDs and roughly 10,000 copies of each are sold per year – my work is seen by 40,000 people per year… That's better than I ever expected!

However, now I'm producing a project that will be on a slightly higher scale. It's a five or six DVD set.

Here's what I need help with…

#1) I've always used the Adobe dynamic Link from Premier to encore. It's always worked just fine for me – and it feels like the technology is incredible.

But – anybody that I've talked to about this says that this is not the way good DVDs are made. They say that rather than using the dynamic link, I should be exporting the media within Premier, and unloading that into encore separately.

Which is correct?

#2) I don't know how much content I should put on each DVD disk. I've been assuming 1.5 hours per disc but I just don't know. I've done a few tests, and it looks like encore will use all 4.7 GB whether it's an hour, or 1.5 hours… Does that mean I'm losing one third of my quality when I go from 60 min. to 90 min.?

Is there a way to find out what the optimal amount of content to put on a DVD is?

3) My project was shot with two cameras – one at 1920x1280 23.97fps, the other at 1280x720 59.94fps. I therefore used the 1280x720p 323.97fps Premier project settings.

But when I create a dynamic link from Premier to encore, the default settings for a standard definition DVD, which appeared to be unchangeable, is 29.97 fps.

Should I be concerned about this?

I am using CS5.5 for Windows on all fronts.

Thank you, gents! VERY much appreciated. If one of you would rather talk to me about these things on Skype, I would be happy to pay you as a consultant using PayPal. I could buy an hour of your time, and we can talk about them. Thank you SO much!


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Daniel Ludwig
Re: The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?
on Nov 13, 2013 at 10:38:51 pm

OK Patrick,
I´ll jump into the bilge....

#1. dynamic linking is a nice feature, but authoring-tools normally expect encoded assets like elementary m2v- or ac3-streams.

of course you can use dynamic linking - encore would transcode it as well, but to encode prior authoring is the usual workflow. most professional authoring-tools wont accept any other files.

using this workflow you´ll get better control about what the encoder is really doing.

#2.
a single DVD-5 could contain approx. nearly 120min. video- and audio-content, depending the numbers of your audio-tracks and/or bitrate for video/audio.

if you have only 1 video@4,8Mbit/s (target rate)+ 1 audio-track ac3@192kbit/s, 120min. will fit on the disc.

if there are more audio-track the duration will be lower.

but 4.8 is a really bad bitrate in most cases, you should use more than 5Mbit for video.

a dvd-9 could carry twice as much data of course.....

#3.
for DVD- and/or BD-business 720p60 is the worst format you can use, as it´s no part of the DVD-specs, and if you would like to create a progressive BD you can only go 1080p23.98 or 1080p24 if you would like to use the full resolution of the disc.

both could not be created out of 720p60 quickly or needs a lot of computer-power to calculate - so you are on a dead end street with it.

I would never record 720p, if it should go on DVD or BD, or broadcast - it could only be used for internet.

so far ......

if you would like to talk to me on skype, please send me a PM and I´ll sent you ma ID.


danny


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Jamie Sinclair
Re: The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?
on Nov 23, 2013 at 11:36:35 pm

Question: I have a wedding I edited in Adobe Premiere CS 5 and I have to create a DVD in Adobe Encore. When I export my project from Adobe Premiere what settings do I export with? In "format" what do I choose? Is it MPEGS-DVD, MPEGS2 Blu-ray, etc.??

Please help,
Thank you

Quality over Quantity


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Daniel Ludwig
Re: The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?
on Nov 24, 2013 at 11:10:08 am

Jamie,
I couldn´t tell you as you didn´t told us what sequenz-setting you´ve chosen within premiere.

is your sequnz progressive or interlaced, is it PAL or NTSC - do you use any DV-cams (like DVCPRO25/50, DVCAM, DV) or did you shot on HD.

all theses parameters have direct influence on your export/project-settings.


danny


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Jamie Sinclair
Re: The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?
on Nov 24, 2013 at 4:48:40 pm

The sequence I chose matches the footage. While creating this project I dropped a clip into the "new item" tab to create a sequence that matches my footage. It's basically 1920x1080, 24fps.

It's progressive, NTSC and I shot in HD with my Canon 60D DSLR

Thank you for the help as well

Quality over Quantity


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Jeff Pulera
Re: The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?
on Nov 14, 2013 at 6:28:16 pm

Hi Patrick,

DVD has a maximum allowed bitrate for encoding, and at that max, the 4.7GB DVD will hold about one hour, so you are correct that longer content does theoretically reduce quality from that baseline, though depending on content, you may not notice any difference visually. For instance, if you compared video clips encoded at "8" and "7", you would likely not notice a difference. Might still look quite good at "6", which is a 90-minute setting, depending on content.

It is possible to go beyond two hours, and I often do, up to 2.5 or even 3 hours sometimes! The quality is really dependent on the content. If it is a "talking head" shot with a stationary camera, that can look very good! Busy scenes with lots of motion would not be so lucky.

I do recommend using AME to encode the video rather than DL. But you do then need to figure out the target bitrate yourself. Just search the web for "bitrate calculator" and you will find them.

My guess would be that a lot of quality is being lost somewhere in your workflow with the frame rate conversions. It is difficult enough getting good DVD quality when downconverting from HD, but then you have frame rate conversion of top of that. Was there a particular reason the 1080 recording was done at 24p? Surely the camera must offer 30p or 60i options that would be more DVD-friendly.

So on that thought, a good question would be, what IS your workflow? Since you have mismatched sources, which Sequence preset do you use in Premiere? Hopefully not NTSC, is better to edit as HD and downconvert later. 720p30 may be the best editing option, not positive. Definitely do not use a 1080 sequence, as the 720p would be first upscaled and then downscaled, not cool.

You would encode the DVD as "Progressive" since both sources are progressive.

Good luck with this

Thanks

Jeff Pulera
Safe Harbor Computers


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Patrick Kilchermann
Re: The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?
on Nov 14, 2013 at 6:55:02 pm

Jeff, your post is like a refreshing rain. I've posted projects on Elance hoping to pay a consultant to get some clarity out of this situation, and I have been unable to.

You've helped me so much. PLEASE let me pay you. PM me a paypal email address - let me buy your next lunch.

Fortunately, I am editing in the 1280x720p project setting as you say. The reason I shot in 24p, was because I was told it would provide a "more cinematic look"... I didn't realize all DVDs are 30fps.

A few more questions, if you have a second and would like to earn a bigger tip.. (maybe add a shot of scotch to your lunch?):

1) Do you think I should shoot at 30fps from now on?

2) My project mostly IS "talking head" (me in front of an infinite-white backdrop), with tons of text slides, stock photos, and a few stock footage clips dropped in. The stock photos have 'zoom and pan' effects, so they're not quite completely still - but I'd say 50% of the reel is me talking, and 50% is either text slides (40%), stock photos w/ zoom/pan (40%), or stock footage OR self-shot B-roll (10%).

That said, I'm sure I can find more information online about this, but what encoding settings work best to bring into Encore? I know when I shoot a lot of "slide show" videos, Media Encoder will estimate a 1.1GB file, but it ends up being just 200mb or so. Is there a resource you recommend for me to learn more about how to MAXIMIZE quality while MINIMIZING size?

Knowing this about my project, do you have a "target length" that you'd try to fit onto each DVD? It's LOOKING like I'll have about 5 hours of footage to try to put on 3 DVDs for this part of the project. Do you think that will be a problem?


3) For the next part of my project, I will have to shoot one camera at 1920x1080 30fps, and the other 1280x720 60fps, because I need the ability to slow Camera B down 50% (it'll be outdoor action shots of people jumping around). Will this be okay?


Thank you SO MUCH, Jeff.


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Jeff Pulera
Re: The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?
on Nov 14, 2013 at 7:33:42 pm

Hi Patrick,

You're quite welcome, glad to help. It's possible that with the white background and talking head format, that you could split the 5 hours into two 2.5 hour DVDs. You may find that it could look very acceptable. Or even squeeze it all onto a single dual-layer DVD? But not with the new project of "people jumping around". 3 DVDs for 5 hours, definitely good quality there!

Easy way to test quality without encoding the whole thing - simply encode a short segment at the intended bitrate and see how it looks. Throw some different clips on the timeline to represent a cross sample of what the DVD contents would include, render out that couple of minutes, burn to disc, review. What I do sometimes is put a title overlay on the Premiere video showing the bitrate/settings, and encode a few different ways (changing title of course) and then burn all the samples to one DVD and when reviewing, you will know which clip used what settings according to the title and you can compare results.

Never trust the "estimate" at the bottom of Media Encoder, do your own math.

Besides the online calculators, I often just use the formula 560/minutes = bitrate. If using complex menus/motion menus, you may round down a little to allow for that overhead. Example, 560/120 = 4.66, encode at 4.5 and should fit just fine. When you export from AME the resulting .m2v video and .wav audio clips combined may seem too large to fit a DVD, but Import into Encore and Encore then transcodes the audio to Dolby AC-3 which is far more compact and then it all fits.

For vids over 90 minutes, you'll probably want VBR versus CBR, providing better usage of available space. The "Target" value is the average bitrate (according to calculator) and then choose a low and high limit. For instance 2.5 - 4.5 - 7. Complex moving scenes will use 7, static scenes 2.5, or somewhere in between as needed. 2-Pass VBR analyzes scenes on first pass to decide how to allocate encoding resources on second pass.

30p and 60p should mix just fine. If you put a 60p clip into a 30p sequence, Premiere automatically just knows to play it properly. However, to get the smooth slow-motion, in the clip bin, right click the clip you want to slo-mo and choose "Modify > Interpret" and then manually change the frame rate from 59.94 to 29.97. Then put that clip in the 30p sequence and it is literally now twice as long (one second of 60p has 60 frames, interpret those 60 frames as 30p and it then plays back for two seconds at 50% slow motion). Just got a GoPro, looks really smooth this way!

Jeff Pulera
Safe Harbor Computers


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Jeff Pulera
Re: The "proper way" to author a DVD in Encore?
on Nov 15, 2013 at 6:37:55 pm

Hi Patrick,

PM not working, I emailed your business website

Thanks

Jeff


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