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AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?

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Johan Lundqvist
AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 16, 2015 at 11:08:46 am

I have 2 years of home videos recorded in AVCHD (.mts)-format (just videos of my kids and family life), with 50 fps. Now I'm editing and rendering for archive purpose. Im not exactly bothered about the size of the files, but of course it wouldnt hur to trim them a bit. Should I keep the 50 fps or is it better to render to 25 fps? Any suggestion on the bitrate setting? Will 10 000 kbps be enough?


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Steve Rhoden
Re: AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 16, 2015 at 1:41:54 pm

"Should I keep the 50 fps or is it better to render to 25 fps?"

Keep the 50fps!

Steve Rhoden (Cow Leader)
Film Maker & VFX Artist.
Owner of Filmex Creative Media.
Samples of my Work and Company can be seen here:
http://www.facebook.com/FilmexCreativeMedia


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Wayne Waag
Re: AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 16, 2015 at 2:39:06 pm

This time, I agree completely with Steve. Keep a copy of the original. AVCHD is about as compressed as it gets. If you feel the need to reduce size, then simply render to something like Handbrake, just like you were going to put the video on YT but do NOT reduce the frame rate. One thing I've learned with family videos I've taken over the past 30 years, is that there is no final editing. As an editor, you always learn something new, the software is improved, and new things become available that you may want to apply to footage taken many years earlier. Bottom line for me at least, keep it in the orginal condition--that's the best it will ever be. In fact, keep 2 copies. Hard drives are pretty cheap these days and you don't want to lose these memories due to a drive failure. Plus, it's a lot easier and much faster to simply "copy" rather than "render".

wwaag


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John Rofrano
Re: AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 16, 2015 at 3:19:44 pm

[Johan Lundqvist] "Should I keep the 50 fps or is it better to render to 25 fps?"
Let's discuss what you are archiving. I hope that you are archiving the original camera card structure including the footage (i.e., the /AVCHD folder and all it's contents). I would never throw away the source footage. You said that you were "not exactly bothered about the size of the files" so why not save the source in it's original format?

If you also want to archive your rendered finished video (which you should), then I would definitely archive the format that you delivered (25fps) and you could certainly also archive a 50 fps version. If you don't care about what you delivered then just archive the 50 fps version because you can always create the 25 fps version from it.

Finally you might want to archive your Vegas project file (*.veg) and the project folder with all of it's media. If you don't keep your projects in a single parent folder you really should. Then just archive this whole folder.
[Johan Lundqvist] "Any suggestion on the bitrate setting? Will 10 000 kbps be enough?"
Absolutely not! My NTSC AVCHD camera shoots 29.97 fps at 16Mbps. To get the same quality at 60fps I would need 32Mbps. Your suggestion of 10Mbps is anemic by comparison. I would archive in the bit rate of the original footage which hopefully at 50 fps is around 26Mbps or more. Remember you want your archived footage to at least match the original bit rate or better.

~jr

http://www.johnrofrano.com
http://www.vasst.com



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Johan Lundqvist
Re: AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 17, 2015 at 7:33:22 am

Thank you for your answer!

I realize my question might be a bit unclear, I'll try to clarify:
What I want to achieve is an edited, rendered and good-looking movie that I'll put on my NAS-drive and watch on the media player attached to my TV (currently WDTV Live). I intend to render the movie as an .mp4-file. The media player can play .mts-files, but it becomes a bit laggy (maybe because of the speed on my NAS). If the end-result on the .mp4-file (witch will become approx 2 hrs) can be like 10-15 gb that would be fine.

I'll take the advice about saving the AVCHD folder etc. for the actual "archive" purpose, but what I'm looking to do is to make a good looking .mp4-file (coded in .h264) that will be the movie I'll watch with my family.

The original footage is 50 fps at 28Mbps.

The main reason I asked about the 25 fps vs. 50 fps is if it'll make any difference on a normal 50 inch HDTV if I have "normal" movement in the movie. Or if 50 fps perhaps is overkill/will look somewhat strange.

The main reason for the bitrate question is that I dont know how low I can go and still maintain good looking quality for the mentioned purpose of the rendered movie.

Out of curiosity: The .mts-file contains all movie+sound, right? And the rest of the AVCHD file structure contains just metadata? Why would I need the metadata?


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John Rofrano
Re: AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 17, 2015 at 2:00:41 pm

[Johan Lundqvist] "What I want to achieve is an edited, rendered and good-looking movie that I'll put on my NAS-drive and watch on the media player attached to my TV (currently WDTV Live)."
OK, that's not an "archive". I get it now. You just want to render for distribution to your WDTV. Something completely different.
[Johan Lundqvist] "The main reason I asked about the 25 fps vs. 50 fps is if it'll make any difference on a normal 50 inch HDTV if I have "normal" movement in the movie. Or if 50 fps perhaps is overkill/will look somewhat strange."
It's simple math really. 50 fps will require 2x the bandwidth / bitrate as 25 fps to maintain the same quality. So if you are worried about lag then you want to choose 25 fps to have high quality at low bit rates. Unless you were shooting very fast moving objects like a car or motorcycle race, 50 fps is really overkill.
[Johan Lundqvist] "The main reason for the bitrate question is that I dont know how low I can go and still maintain good looking quality for the mentioned purpose of the rendered movie."
Considering that you are not archiving, I'd say your 10Mbps is probably fine for viewing on your HD TV.
[Johan Lundqvist] "Out of curiosity: The .mts-file contains all movie+sound, right? And the rest of the AVCHD file structure contains just metadata? Why would I need the metadata?"
Yes the MTS file has video and audio but the camera card is probably formatted to FAT32 which splits long files into 4GB sizes and when you drop them back onto the timeline, sometimes there is an audio glitch between clips because Vegas Pro doesn't know that one file is a continuation of the other. By saving the entire contents of the camera card, you can use the Vegas Device Explorer which will read the metadata and stitch the files back together properly so that there is no audio glitch. It's always a good idea to archive the entire card structure (since the metadata is so small anyway) this way you have all of the information that was available when it was originally shot.

~jr

http://www.johnrofrano.com
http://www.vasst.com



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Wayne Waag
Re: AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 17, 2015 at 3:44:01 pm

[Johan Lundqvist]

"What I want to achieve is an edited, rendered and good-looking movie that I'll put on my NAS-drive and watch on the media player attached to my TV (currently WDTV Live)."

If you're using a WDTV Live, you may be limted to 25 fps, regardless, unless you render at 720 50 fps. I live in NTSC land, and still use the older WDTV when traveling and it will NOT play media files rendered at 1080 60P, regardless of the bit rate. Depending upon viewing distance, the differences between 1080 and 720 will be negligible for a 50 inch TV.

As far as obtaining the best quality at the lowest bit rate, there seems to be a consensus that Handbrake which uses the x264 encoder is the rendering tool of choice. In most cases, simply accepting default settings will produce high quality renders with bit rates less than 10 Mbps. There is a script that can be installed which permits "one-click" operation, which I highly recommend. http://www.vegasvideo.de/vegas-2-handbrake-en It takes a bit of an effort to install, but once set up, works extremely well.

wwaag


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Johan Lundqvist
Re: AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 17, 2015 at 6:11:33 pm

I think I will stick to 25 fps and try Handbrake, thanks!


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Johan Lundqvist
Re: AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 17, 2015 at 6:09:06 pm

Great answer, thank you!


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Steve Rhoden
Re: AVCHD - what fps settings for storage?
on Aug 17, 2015 at 9:59:57 pm

Happy editing Sir!

Steve Rhoden (Cow Leader)
Film Maker & VFX Artist.
Owner of Filmex Creative Media.
Samples of my Work and Company can be seen here:
http://www.facebook.com/FilmexCreativeMedia


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