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Nikon D7000 - preparing footage for broadcast

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Andrzej Święch
Nikon D7000 - preparing footage for broadcast
on Jan 16, 2013 at 11:44:43 am

Hello everyone,

I'm currently working on a documentary which is being shot with Nikon D7000. I shoot all my footage in 1920*1080 24p (as there is no 25p option). And because I live in Europe I must adjust to European standards - which in case of broadcasting (and I decided to go full HD) are either 1920*1080 50i or 1920*1080 25p.

So, in order to fulfill the standards I must transcode my footage to 1920*1080 25p. My first attempt was to convert the footage (in VirtualDub) using one of the lossless codecs: Lagarith or HuffYUV but unfortunately the files turned out too heavy for Sony Vegas...so:

My question to you is this: What steps should I take in order to transcode my footage and maintain as much quality possible?

(Let me also add that the production house wants the final project in either Apple ProRes or AVID LE DNxHD. I do not work on MAC so ProRes is not an option. Anyway, my ideas are as follows:)

OPTION 1.

transcode to lagarith (in VirtualDub) -> then transcode to .AVI AVID LE DNxHD (in MPEG Streamclip) -> edit the footage in my target codec and render it to AVID LE DNxHD.

I would like to omit the first step in VirtualDub but I don't know any other good encoders capable of doing straight conversion to AVI/MOV AVID LE DNxHD. (I'm not interested in encoders converting to .MXF as Vegas won't read those). Some might suggest: well, transcode only in MPEG Streamclip! But unfortunately the results are not satisfying. The video isn't really changed, the frames are just doubled. So onto my second solution...

OPTION 2.

transcode the footage to Cineform -> edit in Cineform 25fps and render to .AVI AVID LE DNxHD in Vegas

This step seems the easiest but where do I save more quality guys? Or maybe there are BETTER options. I would be very glad if you helped me out. I'm willing of course to answer all your questions. Thank you! Peace!

Andrzej


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Sareesh Sudhakaran
Re: Nikon D7000 - preparing footage for broadcast
on Jan 17, 2013 at 3:19:05 pm

Andrzej, edit native H.264 in Sony Vegas in 24p and lock. When your audio and video are synced and ready, then render to DNxHD while speeding up to 25 fps.

It's simple. Do a quick test with a small clip and you'll see. Hope this helps.

http://www.wolfcrow.com - Workflow information and support for filmmakers, photographers, audiographers and videographers.


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Andrzej Święch
Re: Nikon D7000 - preparing footage for broadcast
on Jan 20, 2013 at 5:08:07 pm

Thank you Sareesh for your reply! I appreciate it.

Though, I have learned that one shouldn't edit native h.264 files. That those should be converted to intermediates (like Cineform or AVID DnxHD) for better color correction and grading. Isn't this correct?

Also, from my experience Vegas does not speed up the footage to 25 fps, but doubles the frames and thus the output video carries this "ghosting" effect which I personally would like to omit.

Others suggest converting the footage with Cineform. Since it is "visually lossless" and ensures good playback quality in Vegas, it might be ultimately the best option. What do you think?


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Sareesh Sudhakaran
Re: Nikon D7000 - preparing footage for broadcast
on Jan 21, 2013 at 9:18:32 am

There is no rule that says you have to use Prores or DNxHD or any other intermediary codec. I have yet to see any good reason for it, and in all my testing, I have yet to see an advantage. I avoid intermediary codecs like the plague.

I know this goes against the grain of 'common knowledge', so instead of justifying it to you, I'll recommend that you shoot a few seconds of footage and test for yourself to see if there's a substantial difference to warrant it.

I shoot and edit native, with just one render between source and master. If and when I need more 'data strength', I prefer to do it the best way - which is via TIFF image sequences. Vegas can easily edit H.264 native.

Regarding the issue with speeding up in Vegas, I don't have a specific answer to give. Have you read the manual? Most NLEs spell out clearly how they handle frame rate conversions. Maybe somebody with specific Vegas can chime in.

http://www.wolfcrow.com - Workflow information and support for filmmakers, photographers, audiographers and videographers.


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