I am delivering my program in its native DVCPRO HD 720p60. It is destined to be broadcast in HD and SD. What, if any purpose do the Final Cut Pro overlays for title/action-safe serve… and are they at all reliable or is there a great variation?
Fundamental rookie question: does a 1080i broadcast get cropped on the viewer's end? Presuming that overscan is negligible for HD, do the overlays serve merely as guides for title/action-safe for non-digital display sources in NTSC? Or is overscan once more not an issue if the network broadcasts the down-converted program in anamorphic?
Thanks in advance for any light you can shine on this topic,
"Fundamental rookie question: does a 1080i broadcast get cropped on the viewer's end?" - PM
The first step is to get the answer to this question from your broadcaster. I don't know that there's a standard for downconverting HD. From watching TV I've noticed both letterboxed and center cut downconverts. Oftentimes you'll see material that was clearly intended to be letterboxed and the broadcaster decided to crop off the sides instead - it's ugly and I'm sure the advertisers aren't real happy about how their spot looked on the air.
If the material is going to be letterboxed then you need to respect safe title on the left and right edges. The top and bottom of the frame don't matter as much because they will be tightened up after scaling.
If the material is going to be center cut then you need to set up you guides accordingly. Avid has an guide overlay that shows a 4:3 guide inside a 16:9 space - it's a handy tool. If FCP doesn't have this type of a guide make your own in PS or AE.