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Best Quality Technique - Animiation, Print to Video?

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Jed Herzog
Best Quality Technique - Animiation, Print to Video?
on Nov 11, 2008 at 5:59:07 pm

I have a video shot on miniDV in SD and edited in Final Cut Pro. This video will be played in a large theater on the big screen. I am wondering what is the best way to play this video and maximize quality?

My thoughts are:

1) export in QuickTime using the animation codec for Full quality. This is great quality but has a couple of issues. It has to be run on a laptop. Even though I can hook up a laptop, the video will not be in the same resolution as the laptop. This means I will either leave parts of my desktop viewable while the video is playing (BAD) or choose the full screen option in QT which will upscale and distort the video. Plus, even on a nice laptop, a video of such quality/size could underrun.

2) I could print to video back onto a clean miniDV tape. But I doubt the theater could play miniDV. So I could use the RCA outs on my camcorder and play it in that manner. Is that full quality?

Which technique is better? Is there a better or more professional way to do this? I typically publish for the web so I unsure.

Thank you so much for your thoughts.


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Daniel Low
Re: Best Quality Technique - Animiation, Print to Video?
on Nov 11, 2008 at 8:31:49 pm

Just export to a Quicktime Movie from FCP using the 'Current Settings' Then use either Quicktime Pro to 'present' this movie at 'Full Screen' (Look under the View menu) This will hide your desktop completely. You could also use VLC.

Exporting to the Animation CODEC is pointless, it won't add any quality.



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Jed Herzog
Re: Best Quality Technique - Animiation, Print to Video?
on Nov 11, 2008 at 10:55:13 pm

In Theory I have to agree with you. Exporting with current settings should be lossless. But in experience when I export in that manner and again using the animation codec, the animation export looks noticeably better. I do not understand it, but have taken the taste test multiple times.

Using QT's full screen playback is a good option.

Thank you for your advice. I hope I did not sound like I was arguing, rather I just wanted to share my experience.


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Daniel Low
Re: Best Quality Technique - Animiation, Print to Video?
on Nov 11, 2008 at 11:24:09 pm

All you are doing by exporting to the Animation CODEC is converting from 4:2:0 (or 4:1:1 PAL) YUV to 4:4:4 RGB and adding a whole bunch of decode requirements.

From here we could go into the depths of what and where the various colour-space conversions take place and at what sort of quality.

Mac or PC
High or low end Graphics card
High or low end Monitor.

In my experience you are best off leaving the material in its native format especially if you are working with a display you don't have experience with.

Your laptop display will be worlds apart from the large theater display you plan to use.

If you insist on using another codec but need lower processing requirements, have a look at the PhotoJPEG codec set to above 75% quality.






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Please post back saying what solved your problem. It could help others, and saying 'thanks' is free!


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