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AE CS4 Rendering Problem

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Delvin Fubara
AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 9, 2010 at 4:01:01 pm

Sorry if this has been answered before but i have looked for a long time and cannot find one that answers my exact problem.
Basically I am rendering footage which I imported into my composition. The footage is H.264 codec with .avi file extension however when I add the footage to render queue the composition renders but the .avi footage shows as black.
Sometimes while i am editing the avi footage does not show either [render preview] but then I reload the footage or it eventually just shows itself, before I render I always check that the .avi is showing in the preview but during rendering it doesn't show. I used to use Sony vegas and never had this problem any help would be appreciated.

ADDITIONAL INFO.
Working with: AAE CS4 32-bit Windows XP
Rendering to: H.264 .mp4 (based on 'lossless') 1280x720
Format: NTSC 29.97fps
none(Progressive)

Also i have ffdshow installed


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Andy George
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 9, 2010 at 4:28:53 pm

Try converting your h.264 to something else first. AE has trouble with interframe codecs (like h.264). Apparently this is supported better in CS5.

Anything lossless should work fine as an intermediate codec.



-Andy George
Senior Editor & Post Supervisor
http://www.chiselindustries.com


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Delvin Fubara
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 9, 2010 at 5:08:58 pm

Thanks for your quick response.
What would you suggest i convert it to, I would like to keep the quality as high as possible. Should I use Media Encoder to do this?


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Dave LaRonde
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 9, 2010 at 5:02:11 pm

[Delvin Fubara] "The footage is H.264 codec with .avi file extension however when I add the footage to render queue the composition renders but the .avi footage shows as black. "

Andy's right: AE 10 handles H.264 video better than AE 9. Here's why:

Dave's Stock Answer #1:

If the footage you imported into AE is any kind of the following -- footage in an HDV acquisition codec, MPEG1, MPEG2, AVCHD, mp4, mts, m2t, H.261 or H.264 -- you need to convert it to a different codec.

These kinds of footage use temporal, or interframe compression. They have keyframes at regular intervals, containing complete frame information. However, the frames in between do NOT have complete information. Interframe codecs toss out duplicated information.

In order to maintain peak rendering efficiency, AE needs complete information for each and every frame. But because these kinds of footage contain only partial information, AE freaks out, resulting in a wide variety of problems.

I'm a Mac guy, so I like to convert to Quicktime movies in the Animation or PNG codecs; both are lossless. I'll use Apple's Compressor, Adobe Media Encoder or Quicktime Pro to do it.


------------------------------------------------------------------------------



[Delvin Fubara] "Rendering to: H.264 .mp4 (based on 'lossless') 1280x720 "

.... but you still don't want to do that, and here's why:

Dave's Stock Answer #3:

Don't use AE to compress files for final delivery. The various compressors are there only to make quick 'n dirty files showing a project's progress to producers, clients, the kids, etc. AE is incapable of doing multipass encoding, a crucial feature that greatly improves the image quality of H.264 and MPEG-type files in particular.

Render a high-quality file from AE, and use a different application to do the compression. Popular ones are Adobe Media Encoder, Sorenson Squeeze and Apple's Compressor, which comes bundled with Final Cut Suite. Even compressing in Quicktime Pro is better than compressing in AE.

Making good-looking compressed files is almost as much an art as it is a science. It is NOT straightforward at all. I recommend asking a few questions at the COW's Compression Techniques forum.


Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Delvin Fubara
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 9, 2010 at 5:24:16 pm

Thanks, but what format should i use AE to render the .avo to and should i change the setting to uncompressed while rendering, then use media encoder to render the new format to something like .mov?


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Delvin Fubara
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 9, 2010 at 5:25:14 pm

I ment to type .avi. sorry


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Dave LaRonde
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 9, 2010 at 6:12:16 pm

Do you understand the difference between a codec and a media container?

I'm a Mac guy, so I'd use either Quicktime Pro, Apple's Compressor or MPEG Streamclip (free download) to change the h.264's to Quicktime's PNG codec; it's lossless. I'd probably use Compressor because it will do batch processing. QT Pro Can't do that, and I doubt MPEG Streamclip can, either.

I'd render out of AE in Quicktime's PNG codec again, and I'd then use Compressor to create the mp4 in H.264 compression.

I don't know much about codecs for Windows media containers like AVI. You'd have to ask somebody else.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Michael Szalapski
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 9, 2010 at 7:42:06 pm

I work with Windows machines and I still like to use Quicktime for my intermediate codecs. I use the Adobe Media Encoder to do all my encoding (except for DVD's, I use Encore for them usually).

- The Great Szalam
(The 'Great' stands for 'Not So Great, in fact, Extremely Humble')

No trees were harmed in the creation of this message, but several thousand electrons were mildly inconvenienced.


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Delvin Fubara
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 12, 2010 at 6:35:58 pm

Ok i understand what you are sayin. I used Adobe Media Encoder to do what you do. i converted to quicktime PNG but the file size comes out huge (3.5GB) and it's jumpy when i play it. I also tryed a bunch of others but i get various problems such as video and audio being out of sinc etc or the video skips becuase the file size is too big.


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Dave LaRonde
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 12, 2010 at 7:31:37 pm

[Delvin Fubara] "...i get various problems such as video and audio being out of sinc etc or the video skips becuase the file size is too big."

Unless you've got some monster-huge and wicked-fast RAID hooked up to your 16-core machine, that'll happen with those files. You hard drive can't keep up with the bitrate that goes with high-quality files.

But by making that high-quality file, you've maintained image quality until the point when you're ready to do the compression, and that's good. So go compress that big ol' file to H.264 or whatever you'd like. Happiness will ensue.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Delvin Fubara
Re: AE CS4 Rendering Problem
on Jul 14, 2010 at 10:20:45 pm

Thanks for your help guys, problem solved. Dave you were right i used encoder to change it back to H.264 and it played perfectly. Thanks for all the help.


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