FORUMS: list search recent posts

Frame Rate & Codec Conversion

COW Forums : Compression Techniques

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Kenny Miracle
Frame Rate & Codec Conversion
on Mar 24, 2011 at 4:35:46 pm

Hey Everyone,

I'm working on a documentary that has been shot over 3 years. There is 800 hours of footage that comes out to about 15 TB, and this month the company switched the post production to my team.

The last editors were not super organized, so we're transferring footage across 10 drives onto one 24 TB RAID. Then we'll need to relink all the footage in FCP and label clips inside FCP, but not until everything is the same format. This is where the issue lies...

Mainly - About 10 different codecs & framerates. I know this has been dealt with elsewhere. I've read stuff, but this situation is so extreme with this much footage that any input is welcome. If there are other recommended resources, then let me know.

Here are the codecs/framerates:

DVCPRO HD 1080p30 / 23.98 fps
DVCPRO HD 1080i60 / 23.98 fps
DVCPRO HD 720p60 / 23.98 & 59.94 fps
HDSLR H.264 / 30 fps
Apple ProRes 422 / 23.98 & 29.97 fps
Apple HDV 1080i60 / 29.97 fps
Apple ProRes 422 640x480 / 29.97 fps (Button Cam)
H.263 352x288 / 15 fps (Pen Cam)
MP4 720x480 / 23.98 & 29.97 fps (Pen Cam)

I definitely want the main framerate to be 23.98 fps. For the codec, most of the footage is in DVCPRO HD 1080p30, but I'm having trouble transcoding to this format. Apple ProRes is a sure shot, but that just means a whole lot more footage to transcode.

Destination codec can be either DVCPRO or PRORES.

Thank you, and let me know if there is an easier way to explain this :)

Computer: Mac Pro 8-Core
OS: 10.6
Software: Final Cut Studio 3 & Magic Bullet Grinder

Kenny Miracle

Return to posts index

Jeff Greenberg
Re: Frame Rate & Codec Conversion
on Mar 25, 2011 at 11:03:31 am

Given how much footage, I'm not sure I'd convert everything. It's a question of time/resources

I'd definitely convert the following to ProRes:
HDSLR H.264 / 30 fps
Apple HDV 1080i60 / 29.97 fps
H.263 352x288 / 15 fps (Pen Cam)
MP4 720x480 / 23.98 & 29.97 fps (Pen Cam)

I'd work in a 23.98 timeline and 'live with it' for the other frame rates (usually the increase of a frame rate is worse than the reduction.)

I'd have when I was finished: DVCPro and ProRes. I feel comfortable mixing them in a timeline (prores)
If I was working in a 23.98 timeline, I'm more comfortable with putting 30/60 material there than vice versa.

That minimizes the footage you have to convert.

Make sure you tell compressor not to append the settings name - and it'll will generate clips that match the existing name.


Jeff G

Apple Master Trainer | Avid Cert. Instructor DS/MC | Adobe Cert. Instructor
You should follow me (filmgeek) on twitter. I promise to be nice.
Come See me speak at NAB!
Compressor Essentials from
(older but still good) Marquee, Media Composer (3.5) and Basic/Advanced Color DVDs (1.0) from
Contact me through my Website

Return to posts index

Kenny Miracle
Re: Frame Rate & Codec Conversion
on Mar 25, 2011 at 6:22:47 pm

Thanks Jeff! This is good advice.

So, here's the workflow I'm thinking:

1) Organize footage across multiple drives based on content (i.e. Asia footage, Europe footage, etc.)

2) Transcode HDSLR footage to ProRes 422 / 24 fps. Make sure the file name stays the same for easy relinking.

3) Transfer all footage to one 24 TB RAID.

4) Relink all footage in the original FCP project.

5) Label & color code the clips based on format.

6) Create a master sequence as ProRes 422 / 23.98 fps / 1920x1080

7) Edit like crazy until it's locked in as final, potentially separating each format by video tracks.

8) Media Manage the timeline with 2-3 second handles

9) Transcode only footage in timeline to ProRes 422 / 23.98 fps. Using Best framerate settings in Compressor.

10) Export final video in sequence settings, then convert as necessary for other outputs.

How does this generally sound?

And hey - maybe I'll catch one of your sessions at NAB!

Kenny Miracle

Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2019 All Rights Reserved