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Drone materials shot at 1.9:1 transcoded to HD 1080p have frame flex options, but I'm unsure of implications

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Jimmy See
Drone materials shot at 1.9:1 transcoded to HD 1080p have frame flex options, but I'm unsure of implications
on Oct 4, 2018 at 5:44:40 am

I'm working on a job where the drone material has been transcoded for me from it's original 4K shot at 1.9:1 aspect ratio.

By default, all this material is stretched to fit the frame size rather than letterboxed, which is not good and I pointed out to the facility they should change their ingest procedures for this stuff to allow the original aspect ratio to be preserved, or the transcode be done such that the material is cropped to fill rather than stretched.

However after saying that I'm seeing now that in avid, each clip has frameflex applied to it, which, although set to stretch by default does actually have the option for me to choose crop.

This is good, except I'm confused because the material is DNX185x, and Avid codecs as far as I know are fixed frame sizes, not arbitrary, meaning that the conversion process should necessarily have forced the material to become 1920x1080 which is 16:9. That should be irreversible, one would think.

I think the frame flex thing is actually just misleading and that the options it presents aren't actually real options because if you select centre crop, it actually just stretches the already stretched image further, and if you choose center keep size it crops the image as it would if it were 4k, but the material is clearly very zoomed in HD and extremely low quality.

I'm kind of confused why the frame flex settings are there, is there any reason why they are? Is that for potential relinking to originals at a later stage or something?


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Michael Phillips
Re: Drone materials shot at 1.9:1 transcoded to HD 1080p have frame flex options, but I'm unsure of implications
on Oct 4, 2018 at 4:10:13 pm

That is an interesting situation. When the input frame size is less than or equal to project timeline size, then FrameFlex has no real value anyway. In an ideal world, they would transcode to DNxHR (you choose data rate) preserving original resolution and aspect ratio and let you decide how to deal with it using FrameFlex.


Michael


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