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Mixed frame rates project

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Joana Rodrigues
Mixed frame rates project
on Aug 30, 2014 at 11:03:20 pm

Hi,

I'll be soon starting a new project and I'll have several frame rates to work with: 23.98, 25 and 29.97, for a project that will be delivered in 29.97 DF (there is also the chance that we'll need to deliver it in PAL as well). Most of the footage was shot in 25p. Is it 25p the best frame rate for the project then? Would you recomend converting frame rates before import or would MC do a pretty good job in this case? Whould anyone care to share past experiences with mixed frame rates and the results?

Many thanks.


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Pat Horridge
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on Aug 31, 2014 at 9:04:48 am

A number of options.
One is to AMA link each source into a project setup for that frame rate. Transcode to whatever resolution you are using. (Depending on what edit route you plan, offline online or direct online)
Then in your delivery project (the one at the framerate you plan to deliver in) copy the other projects bins in. Then the clips will have motion adapters you can adjust.
However for the best result I'd work at the framerate you have the majority footage in. Output at that and then use an alchemist to framerate convert as required.

Pat Horridge
Technical Director, Trainer, Avid Certified Instructor
Free online Tutorials at VET digital media academy online http://vimeo.com/channels/752951
VET
Production Editing Digital Media Design DVD
T +44 (0)20 7505 4701 | F +44 (0)20 7505 4800 | E pat@vet.co.uk |
http://www.vet.co.uk | Lux Building 2-4 Hoxton Square London N1 6US


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Job ter Burg
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on Aug 31, 2014 at 9:30:03 am

While mix&match allows it, combining 23.976 or 24.000 with 25.000p is going to be very tricky, these are terrible frame rates to mix. I'd try to get the 23.976p stuff speeded up to 25, so you can work with that at 25. Then have someone convert any and all 29.97 sources to 25p for you (although that may sort of work OK inside MC). Work at 25p, master at 25p, deliver from there.


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Michael Phillips
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on Aug 31, 2014 at 1:30:56 pm

The frame rate conversion in Media Composer can be very hit and miss. In some cases, and productions it will do fine, but in others, the expected quality is not what productions are expecting. The default algorithms used are the best while keeping it a real time play, which is different than the best quality period. That's why uses will recommend hardware based solutions for final delivery.

Managing different formats is a bit of a pain as well. As Part pointed out, create a project that matches the raster, frame rate, and image structure for each format used; so 23.976p, 24.000p, 25p, 25i etc. are all different from each other. 25p and 25i, for example will render effects differently (frame versus field). Again, as Pat says, AMA link to footage in its matching project type, transcode to editorial proxy, then open those bins with transcoded clips in 25fps (p or i depending on your primary deliverable) and work away.

At this point, Avid is tracking the different sources and their frame rates and will let you manage them for final conform by going back to the original projects for each source type, etc. But, should you render or transcode again for whatever reason in that 25p projct, any source that is not 25p will now become a true 25p source and you will be greeted with a nice message about how relink, EDL's, and such for those non-25p sources will now be lost. I would highly recommend that for all formats in their native projects you add at least one custom column that indicates original project name or type (duplicate column "Project" into custom column). Newly created media gets tagged with project name in which it is being created, so a transcode in a different project takes on that project name and not the original name. Should you ever have to transcode across frame rates, you will at least have a clue as to where it came from. Also know that transcoding non-native frame rates in a project will delete any AuxTC type timecode which is a pain if you are tracking those for any reason.

Media Composer is great at editing all these different frame rates, rasters, codecs, and such together, but managing them for a conform in a different system, or in this case, a potential frame rate conversion via third party hardware, it is best to keep formats separate for those processes. While they do have modes to detect different things, it will never be as good a quality conversion than using the original format as Media Composer will have already mixed in a variety of blending and frame addition/dropping that is hard to undo, especially if blending with dissolves, supers, PIPs, etc. where two or more things are happening at once.

If you find that frame rate quality satisfactory in Media Composer, it does simplify a few things, but you still want to manage which project the clips came from for a relink conform process.


Michael


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Nick Gibbon
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on May 8, 2016 at 3:21:18 pm

Hi Michael,

I know this is an old thread but it's precisely a problem I'm about to face with an edit job.

80 hours of footage, shot in a lovely mixture of 25, 24, 23.976 and 29.97! I just wanted to clarify with you what happens when I AMA re-link to master camera files after my DNxHD 36 offline is pic locked (in a master 25fps project).... How will the frame rate conversions match back to the unchanged FPS of the master footage?

Many thanks,

Nick


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Shane Ross
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on May 9, 2016 at 12:56:01 am

What version of Avid are you running?

And know that you need to AMA link and transcode them in a project with matching frame rate, if on Avid 8.4 or under. 8.5 introduced the ability to transcode to the source timecode in a project of a differing type.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Nick Gibbon
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on May 9, 2016 at 8:38:13 am

Hey Shane,

thanks for your response. I'm running 8.4.1

I'm going to create separate projects for each frame rate, AMA link then transcode to 36 for offline. Then I'll create a master 25 project and open the bins from the other projects in that project (I noticed Michael said to "copy" those bins into the master project - is that the same as just opening those bins in the master project?)

My question specifically was once I've finished offline at 25 how will Avid handle the original camera files in the conform for up-res, in terms of the clips with altered frame rates? Will it just apply the fps conversions to the higher res material in the background in the way that effects and transitions would carry over (It's my first time in Avid going from offline -online at end of edit)?

Cheers,

Nick


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Joana Rodrigues
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on Aug 31, 2014 at 3:51:50 pm

Thank you so much for taking your time to address the topic.

So if I got it right, you're advising me to AMA, let's say, all the 23.98 footage to a project with same frame rate and trancode to DNx175. Then in a 29.97 project, transcode all the 29.97 files in DNx220, so long and so forth, to then, at the end, bring the bins to my delivery project and work around the motion effects that will be created. When project is finalized, look for a company that offers the service of frame rate conversion with hardware such alchemist. Is that it?

Would the transcode to so many different resolutions (DNx 175, 220 and 185) be a pain at the end when exporting for approval, for mix, etc?

Random idea: why not transcode the frame rates before starting the project? Lets say, with cinema tools or Rhozet?

Thank you!


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Michael Phillips
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on Aug 31, 2014 at 3:58:08 pm

Media Composer can mix codecs just fine, and 175, 220 etc, are actually the same codec, the data rate is reflective of the frame rate.

Are you planning on an offline/online conform process, or edit as "finishing quality?" That is a decision you make based on storage, and other needs as you can offline at DNxHD 36/40 then relink/conform at the end.

You also raise a good point about converting ahead of time, which is something to consider if you like the quality of those applications. Again, I find hardware based converters are still better overall, but are geared towards signal based workflows like tape, etc. But in either case, you are creating new submasters that are now harmonized to 25p.

I would a test of several different source clips using those apps and Media Composer's frame rate conversion and compare. If they are all close enough, then doing it in MC directly will be less hassle.


Michael


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Joana Rodrigues
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on Aug 31, 2014 at 4:28:06 pm

I'm planning to edit as finishing quality because I don't have a huge amount of data. My reasoning being: I already have to worry about the many frame rates, so let's make the delivery a no-brainer.

Now that you tell me that converting the frame rates beforehand is possibly not a bad idea. I'll definitely do some tests and see how it goes. Thank you for the advice.


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Pat Horridge
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on Aug 31, 2014 at 5:20:23 pm

Are you able to monitor your playback on a decent size/quality output monitor? You have to be able to do that if you plan to commit to frame rate conversions in the edit.

Pat Horridge
Technical Director, Trainer, Avid Certified Instructor
Free online Tutorials at VET digital media academy online http://vimeo.com/channels/752951
VET
Production Editing Digital Media Design DVD
T +44 (0)20 7505 4701 | F +44 (0)20 7505 4800 | E pat@vet.co.uk |
http://www.vet.co.uk | Lux Building 2-4 Hoxton Square London N1 6US


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Joana Rodrigues
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on Sep 16, 2014 at 2:10:44 pm

Hi Pat, I'm, yes, on a TV logic LVM. Looks good to me :) And I did some tests... the best results were really creating different projects to different frame rate footage and bringing them all to my final 25p project. The only material I transcoded beforehand was the slow motion footage shot in 50p. It's all looking great so far. Thanks for the big help!


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Michael Phillips
Re: Mixed frame rates project
on May 9, 2016 at 1:25:30 am

This was a workflow for older versions of Media Composer that may work for you:
http://24p.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/transcode-and-relink-ac...

Michael


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