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FCP 8 bit in After Effects with 3/2 pulldown

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Ed Ethridge
FCP 8 bit in After Effects with 3/2 pulldown
on Aug 11, 2008 at 11:14:00 pm

So I’ve had this weird problem for over a year where I export a QT video base from FCP as 8 bit uncompressed and take it into After Effects CS3 to add graphics and render back out as FCP 8 bit uncompressed. The problem is that I would have strobing issues with the video if I moved it around in After Effects. I had already discovered that you CAN NOT INTERPOLATE 8 bit Uncompressed video in After Effects unless you’re willing to live with the horribly aliased result. So long story short, I decided to check the Y position of the layers in question in After Effects and quite by accident discovered they were all set to an EVEN value for Y. On a hunch I repositioned my After Effects layers to ODD values for Y and VOILA! The problem disappeared. I should mention that the footage in question was all shot on 35mm film and included 3/2 pulldown which I did not remove. In any event the big discovery is that when dealing with film footage in After Effects and not removing the 3/2 or “jitter frames” you have to be sure the footage is sitting on an ODD number on the Y axis. After I thought about it, it made all kinds of sense. Since FCP is going to look at the final rendered move “Lower field first” the fields have to line up in After Effects, ESPECIALLY since you can’t interpolate the footage. Don’t know if this will help anyone but after a year of trial and error (and many gray hairs) I had to share.


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: FCP 8 bit in After Effects with 3/2 pulldown
on Aug 11, 2008 at 11:55:53 pm

Was your fotoage captured 720x480 by any chance?


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Mike Zimbard
Re: FCP 8 bit in After Effects with 3/2 pulldown
on Aug 15, 2008 at 3:47:43 pm

In general, when you are dealing with footage in After Effects that originated on film and was telecined at 23.976, that is the frame rate you'll want to use and you should definitely be removing pulldown. It will make your life so much easier and all of those juddering issues you've been having will go away because you'll be working on whole frames and will add a pulldown cadence back in afterwards. An ideal work flow for you would be to edit in final cut and then export each shot individually that requires FX or graphics (or buy automatic duck and save yourself some time:). In AE you should then remove the pulldown from each shot and do your graphics and compositing in a 23.976 comp. Then when you render out to 8-bit uncompressed change your settings for AE to put pulldown back into the clip so that it will render out a 29.97 shot that can be dropped right back into your final cut timeline. I think you will find this a much easier way to work, and all of your shots will playback correctly.



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