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Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format

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Trip Nixon
Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format
on Apr 18, 2011 at 3:16:00 pm

I shoot with Canon DSLR's...edit native in Premiere (no intermediate), and was wondering the best format for a master copy. I am doing a lot of noise reduction, color grading and correction, and sometimes stabilization. Am I better to export an uncompressed version or back to the original format that it was in (in the case of canon DSLR .mpeg). (or something else). I want to keep a master copy which to output to different things like blu-ray, h.264 for web, and other things. Is it safe to send it back to its original form after all of that post production, or an uncompressed. I would like have to use the original format for space reasons, but quality is top priority...so if uncompressed is the best...well thats what I want. You help is greatly appreciated! THANKS!!!!


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Craig Seeman
Re: Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format
on Apr 18, 2011 at 3:35:40 pm

You can't improved the quality but using an intermediary can minimize further damage. Personally I would recommend using DSLR's native H.264 natively except for maybe simple cuts and some very light FX (titles and transitions maybe).

It's better to work in ProResLT or maybe Uncompressed 4:2:2 8-bit or DNXHD or some other nearly uncompressed I-Frame codec.



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Jeff Greenberg
Re: Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format
on Apr 18, 2011 at 3:43:22 pm

You don't say whether your on a Mac or a PC - I'd suggest one of three workflows:

1) Animation/Uncompressed - advantage, no additional degradation, disadvantage, file size. Hey, it's near to perfect
2) ProRes/DNxHD - advantage, large beefy codec used by editorial systems, disadvantage some compression. This is essentially what FCP/Avid users are doing when they transcode.
3) Cineform. It's a third party codec (you'll have to pay for it) - but it provides excellent storage/playback, you can choose the amount of compression, and it will general QuickTime files that work in other editorial tools, totally cross platform (they just need to download a decoder.) Advantage, adjustable to your needs, con: you'll have to pay for it.

#3 is the way I'm suggesting most Premiere Pro users go, unless they want to just bring the whole project back (and I do believe in backing up your whole projects)

Best,

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 Lynda.com
(older but still good) Marquee, Media Composer (3.5) and Basic/Advanced Color DVDs (1.0) from Vasst.com
Contact me through my Website


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Trip Nixon
Re: Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format
on Apr 19, 2011 at 12:15:37 am

Sorry...didnt mention, yea Im on mac and premiere.

As for an intermediate codec....I find it not very applicable as native runs just fine on my computer in CS5. I havent yet started to dabble with 10bit color space or firstlight by cineform...but havent really seen the need so much with what I do.

The problem is that, I run Neatvideo, magic bullet looks, ProDad mercalli on almost every clip to some degree (mercalli not as much, but the other 2 definitely). This makes for an EXTREMELY long export as neatvideo in particular is heavy. It takes me about a day to export a 35 minute wedding highlight video. (around 500 or more clips). All are getting manual color correction to each with gradients, spot exposures, etc. This does not include my transition effects like blurs, etc. I can really cut down on my exporting time if I make a master copy first, then use it to export my web, blu-ray, and other copies. As of last night, I started an export using quicktime with codec set to NONE....and the file looks like it will be 186gig. This is fine, as I really only need to KEEP this file for a short time while making the applicable copies, then I will just make a trimmed version of my project and archive the project minus the master copy. I dont usually EVER have to come back to a project, but I archive weddings for 1 year just incase. If I DID need to come back to it...I would have to do a new export of the project...but the chances of that happening are slim...and space (I have about 5TB) is not that big of deal...however, as I need space...I just think I will delete the master uncompressed versions slowly as time passes by and the wedding is mostly in the past.

Anyway, does this sound like a good workflow for me?


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Rich Rubasch
Re: Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format
on Apr 19, 2011 at 1:12:32 am

ProRes LT.

Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production, Post, Studio Sound Stage
Founder/President/Editor/Designer/Animator
http://www.tiltmedia.com


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Jeff Greenberg
Re: Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format
on Apr 19, 2011 at 1:41:13 am

I'd do a short speed test - 30 seconds or so to:
Uncompressed
ProRes
Cineform.

I'll bet that Uncompressed is the fastest. One MAJOR question: how much of what you're doing can be optimized by the right video card and the Mercury Playback Engine? I'd totally redo my workflow to cut one of those three out (Neatvideo, Mercalli and MB looks.) If I could get just ONE of those (or more) or alternate tools that utilize the video card, life would be much faster.

Best,

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 Lynda.com
(older but still good) Marquee, Media Composer (3.5) and Basic/Advanced Color DVDs (1.0) from Vasst.com
Contact me through my Website


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Trip Nixon
Re: Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format
on Apr 19, 2011 at 2:01:58 am

A little bit confused about what you mean about utilizing the mercury playback engine. I have it set under preferences to utilize the mercury playback engine. What exactly are you meaning? Sorry for the incompetence.


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Jeff Greenberg
Re: Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format
on Apr 19, 2011 at 2:03:05 am

Adobe's mercury playback engine makes a huge difference in performance, especially when you're using an approved video card.

There's a gigantic difference between the possible hardware acceleration and just the software side of the Mercury Playback engine.
Details here

If you can use a video card that utilizes the full capability of the engine AND stick to internal effects that utilize the engine, you can get RT performance.

That's all. The filters you've chosen (are fantastic) but aren't speedy renders.

Best,

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 Lynda.com
(older but still good) Marquee, Media Composer (3.5) and Basic/Advanced Color DVDs (1.0) from Vasst.com
Contact me through my Website


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Trip Nixon
Re: Uncompressed .mov vs. Original File Format
on Apr 19, 2011 at 2:05:09 am

Also...I WOULD LOVE to have a pro to skype with as I am in Osaka, Japan and really lack good english communication on video things. PLEASE feel free to add me on USER ID DJFROBOT
I would really really really appreciate a talk with someone on mac and premiere who knows about compression...can repay with an awesome place to stay if you come to Japan! Thanks!!!!!


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