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Standards conversion in compressor - all good except for a flash to colour bars

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Sarah Davis
Standards conversion in compressor - all good except for a flash to colour bars
on Nov 6, 2011 at 12:22:06 am

Hi,

I am doing my first ever PAL to NTSC conversion and I am using compressor.

I know that hardware will yield the best results but for now I need to use software.

I have done a lot of research on the various forums and have learnt a lot but have one remaining issue.

I have a PAL 1080p 8bit uncompressed master which I took into compressor with the following settings.







The encoding took 3 three hours which surprised me as the film is 19 minutes long and making a PAL mpeg took 10 hours.

All looks pretty good except for one issue - there is a flash to colour bars about 9 seconds into the film at the end of a long, slow panning shot of a moving car. There are a lot of panning and slow tracking shots in the film and no issues with them. I guess this is compressors way of saying - "on no I've lost the plot for a moment."

I am thinking that I should do the standards conversion in the same format as my master - 8bit uncompressed and then do the mpeg version from the new NTSC master.

Do you think this is a good first option for solving the issue?

Any advice would be very much appreciated.

Cheers,

Sarah


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Sarah Davis
Re: Standards conversion in compressor - all good except for a flash to colour bars
on Nov 6, 2011 at 3:14:26 am

Hello again,

I did the PAL to NTSC conversion in compressor 3.5, staying in uncompressed 8bit to see if that would fix the flash to colour bars issue (in case the issue lies with going from my 8 bit PAL master straight NTSC mpeg) but the issue is still there.

Would compression markers around the problem area fix it? I have not used compression markers in Compressor before. It seems you would need to insert them in FCP first and export them with the master?

I also have AE 10 and I heard that this does an ok standards conversion but I am not sure how to do it? I am not an AE user.

If buying twixtor for AE would save me a whole lot of heartache I would do it. I tried the trial version and had issues with the images jumping at some cut points. I heard that Twixtor does this at scene endings and that you can tell it when the scene ends. My issues were not at scene endings. The info I have found on using twixtor on the Twixtor website or in the manual does not give detailed info on PAL to NTSC conversions.

I would be extremely grateful for any advice on how get the best results out of Compressor, AE or Twixtor.

The movie I am working on is a 19 minute short drama film with synch dialogue and music. I am trying to create a NTSC DVD for film festival submissions.

Cheers,

Sarah


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Mark Spano
Re: Standards conversion in compressor - all good except for a flash to colour bars
on Nov 7, 2011 at 9:25:38 pm

Hi Sarah,

I've noticed that at "best" retiming settings when doing standards conversions, the error either gives a color bar flash or an extended still frame where there shouldn't be one. For what it's worth, I've never seen the flashes when the retiming controls are set to "better" instead of "best". It may be worth in the future finding the section and setting in and out points in the preview window of Compressor. Then reprocess just that section using your same preset but with "better" retiming, then cutting it back in in FCP.



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