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Is there a significant loss of quality when converting original dslr h264 files to prores LT (50%)

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Andreas Ahston
Is there a significant loss of quality when converting original dslr h264 files to prores LT (50%)
on Jun 30, 2014 at 6:11:31 pm

I converted all the videofiles from my Nikon D7100 to prores LT in mpeg streamclip and set the video quality to 50%. This is because the h264 files seems to require more processing power than to edit in prores. But now that I'm done with the edit, I want to colorgrade and finish the project. I don't really know what the difference is between the two formats and I would like to not have to online the original material unless there is a significan difference. I'd love to hear other peoples inputs and experiences on this.


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Steve Crow
Re: Is there a significant loss of quality when converting original dslr h264 files to prores LT (50%)
on Jun 30, 2014 at 8:09:29 pm

Yes editing H.264 on the timeline can bog a computer down a lot, so converting to ProRes was a good first step but I would have used standard ProRes and kept the quality level at 100 percent. Once you've fully edited and color graded, you want to create a MASTER output file off the timeline that is as high quality as you can make it - then you can downconvert that master file a bit if you have to to create the version you will actually be delivering which is often a H.264 if you plan on streaming it on the Web. Your computer should be able to edit the normal quality prores file without much problem so I wouldn't go with ProRes LT unless absolutely necessary.

I have never done this myself but some editing systems let you use a lower quality "proxy" version of your clips that are easier on your system to edit and then at the end of the workflow you swap out the proxy clips for their full resolution version and render that out to create your Master file...but you are only doing the rendering once so it can be a real time saver.

Steve Crow


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Steve Crow
Re: Is there a significant loss of quality when converting original dslr h264 files to prores LT (50%)
on Jun 30, 2014 at 8:17:24 pm

Oh I forgot to answer your initial question, no - if you follow the basic workflow I mentioned the quality will be nearly indistinguishable from the original camera footage

Steve Crow


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Andreas Ahston
Re: Is there a significant loss of quality when converting original dslr h264 files to prores LT (50%)
on Jul 1, 2014 at 11:46:09 am

Thank you Steve, for your reply. I used a lower quality to save harddrive space, not processing power. But I guess i'd be easier to get a bigger harddrive. I'll do that next time.

But now I still need to get this project through in the best possible way. I want to grade in color and I've tested the workflow, exporting xml from premiere to color. It works fine and I'm pretty sure that I managed to reconnect the edit to the original h264. I guess that must be just as well as converting to prores HQ? If I can live with the lag.

The only problem I see now, is that I've used the warp stabalizer in premiere for a lot of the shots. I'm thinking I should probably grade it first, then bring it back into premiere for the stabalizing. Any thoughts on this?

thank you very much for helping.

A


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