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Long Clip Shortened To Shorter Clip To Be Worked On Later. Which Lossless Codec Is Ideal?

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Brad Anderson
Long Clip Shortened To Shorter Clip To Be Worked On Later. Which Lossless Codec Is Ideal?
on Jun 16, 2017 at 7:08:27 am

I'm not good at titles as you can see. My question is which codec is preferred for archiving footage to be used for later. Let's say to save space on my external hd I have a 2-hour video that I want to cut down to 2-minutes, but will be worked on later. Should I export it to ProRes, DNxHD, Uncompressed? The pipeline would most likely have the video be edited in Premiere Pro and uploaded to YouTube. I am on a PC machine. My apologies if this has been covered. Please point me in the right direction and forgive my ability to conduct a search.


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Chris Wright
Re: Long Clip Shortened To Shorter Clip To Be Worked On Later. Which Lossless Codec Is Ideal?
on Jun 16, 2017 at 7:45:27 am

Prores and dnxhd have many flavours of quality.
It depends on your needing grading headroom, re-encoding and bitrate
File size. Even prores 444 is not 100% data lossless. Think of a jpeg at ultra max quality.
The only people who store 16 bit lossless is disney in EXR.


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Brad Anderson
Re: Long Clip Shortened To Shorter Clip To Be Worked On Later. Which Lossless Codec Is Ideal?
on Jun 16, 2017 at 7:58:08 am

Thanks Chris. I'm still not quite sure based on your reply. But, I gather that either is fine and that I won't be able to tell the difference? This would be my pipeline:

premiere pro cc on pc ---> h.264 .mp4 48 khz video file ---> chopped down ---> ?exported to best fitted codec to have near lossless quality to be archived and worked on at a later time to save space on my machine? ---> worked on ---> exported to h.264 .mp4 48 khz video file ---> uploaded to youtube, vimeo, etc.

That is the most specific I can get with my needs.


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Long Clip Shortened To Shorter Clip To Be Worked On Later. Which Lossless Codec Is Ideal?
on Jun 16, 2017 at 1:21:14 pm

You want a good intermediate codec. ProRes is out -- you're on a Windows box. So go with DNxHD. I'm comfortable using either.

Dave LaRonde
Promotion Producer
KGAN (CBS) & KFXA (Fox) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Jeff Pulera
Re: Long Clip Shortened To Shorter Clip To Be Worked On Later. Which Lossless Codec Is Ideal?
on Jun 16, 2017 at 2:54:54 pm

Dave has it right - ProRes export is NOT available on Windows machines, period, so that's out. Use a DnxHD preset from Premiere (make sure settings match source - frame size, frame rate, pixel aspect, fields) and this will create an .mxf file that looks great and holds to up several generations. You can also use the Cineform codec (.mov) with good quality.

NEVER use H.264 as an intermediate codec - it is extremely lossy, meaning lots of compression = loss of quality. Use H.264 for delivery only as final stage, not during editing (other than source video if already H.264 which you can't help).

Thanks

Jeff Pulera
Safe Harbor Computers


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Brad Anderson
Re: Long Clip Shortened To Shorter Clip To Be Worked On Later. Which Lossless Codec Is Ideal?
on Jun 17, 2017 at 7:27:23 am

Thanks Dave and Jeff. That was just what I was looking for. I look forward to using Premiere since I heard it's very similar to FCP 7 and already have some experience with After Effects. Thanks again for the recommendations!


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