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FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K

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Nayeli Garci-Crespo
FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 12:01:15 am
Last Edited By Nayeli Garci-Crespo on Aug 21, 2014 at 12:02:25 am

Hi everyone,

We've just purchased GH4s and are trying to decide whether to switch to FCP X or to Premiere from FCP 7 (so hard to let go!).

Does anyone have experience editing 4K footage in a 1080 sequence in FCP X that could tell me how smoothly it plays back? All things being equal (processors, RAM, etc.), is there any difference in ability to handle native files between FCP X and Premiere... at 1080P? At 4K?

We need a quick turnaround as we do mostly web videos and would like to edit the GH4 4K footage in a 1080 timeline for quick resizing and zoom-ins.

Thanks,
Nayeli


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Noah Kadner
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 12:05:54 am

Well this is the FCPX forum- sooo. I've cut GH4 footage in FCPX- it's rock solid for me. Especially if you have decent system specs.

Noah

FCPWORKS - FCPX Workflow
Call Box Training


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David Cherniack
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:08:44 am

Works fine natively in Premiere with a decent machine at 4k. I prefer to transcode because the long GOP makes speed viewing material not quite as butter smooth as iframe.

David
http://AllinOneFilms.com


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Nayeli Garci-Crespo
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:10:19 am

Ah, thanks... that's the next question I was going to ask... performance of all-intra vs. the lower bit rate 1080 on both. Thanks!

-Nayeli


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Nayeli Garci-Crespo
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:10:41 am

Good news, thanks!

-Nayeli


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Ty Vann
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:01:57 am

GH4 4K original camera .mov files on FCPX and rMBP no problem whatsoever.


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Nayeli Garci-Crespo
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:12:30 am

Thanks! What about 1080... any difference between the all-intra H264 and the lower bit rate options?

-Nayeli


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Nicholas Zimmerman
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:54:45 am

A beautiful part of the FCPX workflow is that you can generate ProRes files within the application while editing the h.264 until the transcode is finished. ProRes will beat h.264 for editing no matter what NLE is used due to h.264's aforementioned long GOP structure.

________________________________________

NickZimmerman.net

Certified in FCPX, Logic Pro X, & Motion 5
________________________________________


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Craig Seeman
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 5:25:24 am

It's possible to have all I Frame (no IBP GOP) H.264. Panasonic AVC Intra is an example. I believe that's one of the options for recording in the GH4.



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Nicholas Zimmerman
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 6:00:48 am

Only in 1080p from what I saw, the 4k is a more vanilla h.264. Apparently the All-I 1080p is pretty high quality though, the reviews I read raved about it.

http://www.eoshd.com/content/11934/panasonic-gh4-preview

________________________________________

NickZimmerman.net

Certified in FCPX, Logic Pro X, & Motion 5
________________________________________


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Craig Seeman
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 12:56:24 pm
Last Edited By Craig Seeman on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:19:58 pm

Yes, from what I understand only 1080 is Intra.

BTW I use Blackmagic (BMPCC) and considering the 4K. This is one of the reasons I'd choose the BMP4K because its cDNG or ProRes flavors at 4K and not 8 bit H.264 GOP. Of course the GH4 does have a lot of nice features going for it and the outputs can get you 10bit 422.



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Gary Huff
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:39:36 pm

[Craig Seeman] "This is one of the reasons I'd choose the BMP4K because its cDNG or ProRes flavors at 4K and not 8 bit H.264 GOP."

Except you don't always need the power of ProRes or cDNG, and in those instances 100Mbps is a helluva lot nicer to move around than 800Mbps.

The GH4 with a Shogun may (if rumors hold true) give you cDNG recording, in addition to ProRes, in addition to 4K AVCHD (which is essentially what it is) so that you can adjust the amount of record space with the requirements of the job at hand.

You also get removable internal batteries, longer battery life, a higher quality and articulating LCD screen, better low-light performance, slow-motion at 1080, ability to format media in camera/in the Shogun, picture profiles (limited though they may be), less FPN, and media that is not blazing hot when you remove it from the camera/recorder.

On the flip side, the Blackmagic 4K is available now, doesn't require the use of an external recorder for ProRes/cDNG (though its built-in display leaves a lot to be desired, so I've always paired the Blackmagics with an external monitor), and has a Super 35-sized sensor EF-mount with global shutter (the GH4 does suffer from rolling shutter artifacting if you enjoy doing whip pans).


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Craig Seeman
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 5:04:46 pm

[Gary Huff] "Except you don't always need the power of ProRes or cDNG, and in those instances 100Mbps is a helluva lot nicer to move around than 800Mbps."

I'd note that BMD cameras have ProRes Proxy through ProRes HQ. ProRes LT at 1080p23.98 is about 82Mbps at 10bit 422.



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Gary Huff
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 5:13:04 pm

[Craig Seeman] "I'd note that BMD cameras have ProRes Proxy through ProRes HQ. ProRes LT at 1080p23.98 is about 82Mbps at 10bit 422."

That's true, but not at 4K.


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Craig Seeman
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 5:48:54 pm

[Gary Huff] "That's true, but not at 4K."

ProRes LT at 4k 24fps is 350Mbps I believe

Of course one might wonder to what extent one is going to work at 4K H.264 GOP and if you're going to transcode to ProRes (even though FCPX does that while editing) that's a step one doesn't have to do from BMD.



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Gary Huff
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 11:06:16 pm

[Craig Seeman] "that's a step one doesn't have to do from BMD."

You don't have to do that from the 100Mbps footage either, at least not in my experience with it.

And even if you do, at the end of the day you're only backing up 100Mbps clips and not 350Mbps and higher.


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Craig Seeman
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 11:18:29 pm

[Gary Huff] "You don't have to do that from the 100Mbps footage either, at least not in my experience with it."

Unless you're doing multicam.
Modern NLEs handle H.264 GOP reasonably well with reasonable hardware if you're just editing. ProRes will hold up better if you're pushing a grade though.



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Gary Huff
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 11:19:00 pm

[Craig Seeman] "Unless you're doing multicam."

A fast RAID storage is going to make the biggest difference here.


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Bret Williams
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 22, 2014 at 2:35:16 am

And actually proRes would need faster drives than h264 just due to the larger data sizes being pushed. But h264 is more taxing in the decompression end of things. I think that's where the bottleneck would be.

I just finished a 9 way multicam edit from a c300 on a 2012 iMac i7. It wasn't enough of an issue to warrant transcoding anything. I can't remember the last time I edited proRes. I think people do it out of habit or misguided info. For sure, those working on the older MacPros are at a disadvantage to the i7 iMacs. I've done my own tests and couldn't tell the difference in 1080p. FCP gets laggy either way. Nothing ProRes can do to fix that.


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Gary Huff
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:31:11 pm
Last Edited By Gary Huff on Aug 21, 2014 at 1:40:44 pm

[Nayeli Garci-Crespo] "Thanks! What about 1080... any difference between the all-intra H264 and the lower bit rate options?"

The highest quality will be the IPB 1080 modes (the 100Mbps ones). IPB is a more efficient encode of H.264 over Intra, and yet, surprisingly, the bitrate is roughly the same at 24/25/30p between the two. Only 60p starts to hit that upper limit.

So Intra will be easier on your system, but IPB will be better visual quality.

Whether or not you can actually notice any difference between the two really requires some testing on your end. It's not quite a slam dunk, admittedly.


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Noah Kadner
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 5:07:41 pm

I find it's a remarkably clean signal as long as you light properly. If you have a slow lens indoors and pump up the ISO it quickly becomes grainy as heck. But that's nothing to do specifically with 4K or this camera or FCPX. They work together quite well assuming well shot footage.

Noah

FCPWORKS - FCPX Workflow
Call Box Training


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Nayeli Garci-Crespo
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 10:38:23 pm

Thanks for the responses. We're still on FCP 7 and are trying to determine how worth it it is to be able to edit the GH4 files natively to avoid having to transcode everything to ProRes.

The all-intra 1080 files are 200 Mbps, vs. 100 Mbps for the 4K and the IPB 1080, so we were hoping to do multicamera shoots with a mix of the IPB 1080 and one camera at 4K, edited in a 1080 timeline to give ability to zoom in. Trying to strike the right balance of efficiency, disk space, and quality.

I guess I'll have to do some tests to see what kinds of issues crop up from using those settings instead of all-intra. In FCP 7 obviously non-all intra H264 plays back horribly (though I've still done quick and dirty edits that way on occasion to avoid transcoding), but the real downside was I'd get rendering errors with certain filters.

Sounds like FCP X can handle the long GOP files well enough to edit comfortably, even if obviously the all-intra is smoother? Is this something that is affected by processor speed, RAM, video card? A combination?

Thanks again!

-Nayeli


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Craig Seeman
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 11:01:52 pm

If you use H.264 GOP, FCPX can transcode to ProRes in the background while you edit. Both PremierePro and FCPX handle it miles better than FCP7 though. My bias is that FCPX has the edge in multcam and background transcode but certainly some would argue PPro has an easier learning curve coming from FCP7.
Both handle H.264 GOP (and you know FCP7 really can't) and, with GOP multicam, the systems's "muscle" is going to be important. Interesting feature in FCPX is that you can transcode for multicam specifically whereas clips that are just being cut into a timeline and remain GOP.



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Gary Huff
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 11:07:37 pm

[Nayeli Garci-Crespo] "and are trying to determine how worth it it is to be able to edit the GH4 files natively to avoid having to transcode everything to ProRes."

You won't be able to. FCP7 cannot muster the power to do it, no matter what you shoot at. If it's not DVCPRO HD, XDCam, DV, or ProRes, you simply cannot work with the footage on the timeline without doing a lot of rendering of that timeline.


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Nayeli Garci-Crespo
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 11:11:38 pm

What I meant is how worth it it is to edit them natively in FCP X, not FCP 7! We transcode to ProRes before editing for FCP 7.

-Nayeli


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Craig Seeman
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 11:16:22 pm

[Nayeli Garci-Crespo] "What I meant is how worth it it is to edit them natively in FCP X,"

In FCPX you import native and can tell it to transcode to ProRes in the background (or not). You can have it transcode only clips used in multi cam or all clips.



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Gary Huff
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 21, 2014 at 11:16:33 pm

[Nayeli Garci-Crespo] "What I meant is how worth it it is to edit them natively in FCP X, not FCP 7!"

You should have no problem working in FCPX with them.


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Noah Kadner
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 22, 2014 at 12:27:41 am
Last Edited By Noah Kadner on Aug 22, 2014 at 12:35:22 am

Whether transcoding is even necessary in FCPX depends on your system specs. If it's an older system with slower drives, you'll want to switch to proxy for editing or even go ahead and transcode to ProRes. The good news is that this is done very easily and you can start cutting the native while the transcodes happen in the background.

It's a breeze compared to what this workflow was like 7. Of course you do have the learning curve of going from 7 to X but lots of resources are out there to help you make the leap.

Noah

FCPWORKS - FCPX Workflow
Call Box Training


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Bill Davis
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 22, 2014 at 1:19:15 am

Nayell,

Understand that the system in X is different.

It essentially sequesters "reference pools" of footage down deep. A "native res" pool from the camera in whatever camera format. If X can "see" that pool, it can call on it. When it transcodes, it creates a separate pool of ProRes. And when you ask it to make proxies, it creates a pool of those.

Then the way X functions, it really doesn't matter which pool you're pointed at when you do the actual editing. It's just a reference. The metadata editing instructions can be applied to ANY of the content pools. So you pick the source pool that makes the editing easiest when you're making your decisions. And then switch to the content pool you need to use for mastering your final when you go do to that.

It's all just metadata pointers.

So you have to evolve away from thinking that you "edit" in a particular resolution.

As I understand it, that's just not how X actually works.

Know someone who teaches video editing in elementary school, high school or college? Tell them to check out http://www.StartEditingNow.com - video editing curriculum complete with licensed practice content.


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Ty Vann
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 22, 2014 at 1:44:45 am

I cut GH4 4K natively, no transcoding, with top of the line 2013 rMPB or iMac with Pegasus Promise RAID.


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Dennis Radeke
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Aug 24, 2014 at 10:09:16 am

[Nayeli Garci-Crespo] "I guess I'll have to do some tests to see what kinds of issues crop up from using those settings instead of all-intra."

I think that's the best course of action both in terms of what type of editing you do (native or transcoding) and edit platform (Premiere Pro, FCP X or other).

Generally speaking (at least for Premiere Pro), editing natively is a question of scrubbing vs the system you're putting it on and what kind of performance expectations you want to see. If you want blazingly fast timeline scrubbing of longGOP material on an old MBP with 8GB of RAM and a non-SSD drive, well then you might want to rethink that. If however, you have a reasonably current system, adequate RAM, GPU, drives, etc. then the experience is for many editors terrific - again depending on what success looks like to you.

So, I'd give both NLE platforms a try and see how they work for you in this situation and make a decision based on that. Creative Cloud is free for 30 days which should give you time enough to form an opinion.

One last thing - if you're looking at a transcoded workflow, then remember that Adobe Media Encoder has a watch folder capability which would allow you to transcode your material in the background.

Good luck!
Dennis - Adobe guy


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chang shan
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Mar 11, 2015 at 6:03:50 am
Last Edited By chang shan on Mar 11, 2015 at 6:20:42 am

As far as I know, it is difficult for FCP or Premiere to support GH4 4K videos directly.You need to get a more friendly format for NLEs before transferring GH4 4K videos to FCP/Premiere. Good luck!


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Steve Connor
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Mar 11, 2015 at 8:02:00 am

[chang shan] "As far as I know, it is difficult for FCP or Premiere to support GH4 4K videos directly.You need to get a more friendly format for NLEs before transferring GH4 4K videos to FCP/Premiere. Good luck!
"


No it's not! I work with 4K from the GH4 on both NLE's and it's fine, FCPX seems to be slightly faster on my system


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juliet zhu
Re: FCPX or Premiere for GH4 4K
on Nov 24, 2015 at 8:26:04 am

I have 3 students editing with FCPX 10.1 from GH4 cameras. They love it. Your storage will be the biggest factor. Since you have a Mac Pro, get a pair of 2TB or 4TB Drives in it as your media drives, and you should be OK.

http://format-changes.over-blog.com


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