How to deliver HD to cable channel to air
We are a brand new non profit studio shooting in HD using several Canon A1s, speed edit, several PC 8 cores and Gspeeds. When our project is done with multiple cams uncompressed is 50gb for a 1/2 show pilot. Video was uncompressed 1440 converted to 720.
Our local cable station "Time Warner" stated just to put it on Beta.?. They currently don't have the means to broadcast HD even though their higher channels state so. So,we down converted it to SD sadly. Obviously it is not the same quality and we are disappointed. We tried some of the tips and trick of different rendering options and passes to make it look like a quality Hollywood DVD. No luck. We have latest codecs and burners to deliver mpeg 2. We tried many burners (Please give advise for a all around best burner option) and I personally feel that "IT" is compressing it even further on it's own.
So...for the pc world..could some give us the most successful steps to convert HD to a Hollywood DVD format that most major cable stations will accept. Thanks, Diane
If TW is requiring Betacam, then what alternative do you have? Will they except a digital file or disc, or is it ONLY Betacam?
Rent a Betacam deck, and either to a 4x3 center crop, or do a 16x9 letterbox. Done. This shoudl take minimal compression, as the hardware during playout should do the HD-SD downconvert.
TW should have a REDBOOK - a guide for specs that all materials going to them need to adhere to. Follow that to the letter.
Hollywood DVDs use millions of dollars worth of gear and talent. Matching this is not going to be feasible. Thus, we need to retain the quality of what you have on the timeline.
What I/O card do you have? Speed Edit can run with or without hardware. Last I saw of it, it was used with Newtek products (Video Toaster, TriCaster).
I highly recommend moving up to a more robust editing software: Avid, Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere, etc. Speed Edit is really good for down and dirty editing, but not "Hollywood" type quality programs.
.: michael kammes mpse
.: senior applications editor . post workflow consultant
.: audio specialist . act fcp . acsr
Michael: Thank you very much for responding. I was shocked when I heard that TW wanted our HD converted to SD and then put on beta.
Last I remembered we are entering 2011 and didn't know if this was the norm or protocol for a large cable provider. Remember we are PC and not MAC and used to use exclusively Avid Composer but it would hardly play nice with HD, non Avid proprietary special effect software, other plugins or after effects HD. Support was good from Avid as long as your had an available limit on your credit card. I was also tired of continuing to buy work arounds like Automatic Duck and different compressors. As for SpeedEdit 2...it's just that …a stand alone post editor. However it works well with almost everything as a drag and drop video projects including mt2 into a time line. The greatest feature is that I can stream and scrub “Realtime” 10 HD time lines in separate windows at the same time via our output window. Better yet project it on a 10ft wall for viewers to comment for final cuts.
I/O cards are all Blackmagic cards either Intensity Pro, Extreme 2 or Decklink. Over course our video cards are only Quadros.
I know compressing 40 gbs into a 4.7 gb is challenging to say the least. But there has got to be away to get it to look at least hi res. When we play back from the harddrive it looks ok but on dvd. Not so good. Is there a piece of latest equipment, codec or software/hardware you may suggest. I think that 1080 to 720 then mpeg2 may be to much to fast. Someone told me to give TW a DVD with a many passes as it can hold is the best I can do. We are new to creative cow and you have been outstanding sharing your thoughts with us! Ditto...Creative Cow!
[Diane Bush] "I was shocked when I heard that TW wanted our HD converted to SD and then put on beta."
Not shocking but sad. I deliver TV spots to Time Warner and others and most stations still only accept SD.
BTW you mention Time Warner but not the station and that makes a BIG difference.
Which cable station(s) are you delivering to?
[Diane Bush] "As for SpeedEdit 2...it's just that …a stand alone post editor."
It's all just tools. You just need to make sure the tool can do the job. A tool is only as strong as its weakest link though.
[Diane Bush] "I know compressing 40 gbs into a 4.7 gb is challenging to say the least. But there has got to be away to get it to look at least hi res."
Hollywood source material is generally much better than typical HD. Their compression tools will rival or exceed the expensive Avid you complained about. Many will use Sonic Scenarist for example.
I believe the SD version is in the $5k-$6k version. There are upgrades that can drive that price higher. $35k is not out of the question.
Personally I would NEVER deliver a compressed DVD-Video for broadcast work. It's going to go through another round of compression and that will be deadly to the quality even if the DVD itself looks good.
Your most reasonable option for broadcast work is to rent a BetaSP deck or maybe even a DigiBeta deck and output through a good downconvert video card. Althernative, take your master file (8 or 10 bit uncompressed 4:2:2) on a hard drive to a post house to output for you.