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Downscaling HD to SD for DVD SP, a better way?

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David Eaks
Downscaling HD to SD for DVD SP, a better way?
on Apr 15, 2011 at 12:54:22 pm

I'm looking for advice/opinions on my technique. When I need to get a 1920x1080 Prores project downscaled and then authored in DVD Studio Pro for DVD delivery, I've never been able to get acceptable downscale results by just running it through Compressor.

So, what I've done is play the HD timeline out through my Matrox MXO2 LE and record the downscaled Y/C output to DV tape on my Sony DHR-1000. Then re-capture the tape in FCP in Matrox DV NTSC and from there I'm on my way to Compressor and DVD Studio Pro.

My question's are-

1) Is this actually the "best" method to get the HD project downscaled and into DVD Studio Pro, print to video and re-acquire? Regardless of time.

2) Is there a more time efficient way to get HD down to SD and into DVD Studio Pro, still getting the quality I'm after? Sending an HD .MOV to Compressor and giving it the "DVD Best Quality xx Minutes" setting just doesn't cut it.

The thing is that I'm wrapping up a 10 disc set with about 16 hours of footage total. This process will tie up my system for many hours.

2008 Mac Pro, 2010 17" Macbook Pro, Snow Leopard, FCS 3, MXO2 LE w/MAX and everything recently updated to current versions with a clean install.


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eric pautsch
Re: Downscaling HD to SD for DVD SP, a better way?
on Apr 15, 2011 at 1:06:54 pm

1. No thats the worst workflow.
Going to DV adds another level of compression since DV is highly compressed

2. Not really. Id say buy another system to do the down conversions



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David Eaks
Re: Downscaling HD to SD for DVD SP, a better way?
on Apr 15, 2011 at 1:38:33 pm

[eric pautsch] "1. No thats the worst workflow.
Going to DV adds another level of compression since DV is highly compressed

2. Not really. Id say buy another system to do the down conversions"


1) The reason I've gone down that path for getting the down conversion to DVD Studio Pro, is because the final product looks so much better than just running it through compressor. At least I didn't go to DVD and back... Other than just saying "that's the worst", do you have a recommendation or some advice to go with it?

2) Not sure what you mean, get what machine to do the down conversion?

I guess I could get a second MXO2. Then I could play HD from my Mac Pro through one MXO2 and capture SD on my Macbook Pro with the second MXO2. That would eliminate 50% of the time AND avoid DV tape! That's gotta be the "best".


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Noah Kadner
Re: Downscaling HD to SD for DVD SP, a better way?
on Apr 15, 2011 at 3:49:39 pm

Going out to the Matrox-definitely not necessary. The problem is that Compressor doesn't do a good job of both downconverting and encoding to MPEG-2 simultaneously. So all you need to do is first export from FCP to a self-contained 16:9/standard definition QuickTime file in ProRes or ProRes HQ. Then use that as your source for MPEG-2 encoding in Compressor. That should look a lot better and will save you the time of going out in real time to the Matrox.

Noah

Unlock the secrets of 24p, HD and Final Cut Studio with Call Box Training. Featuring the Panasonic GH2 and Canon 7D.


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David Eaks
Re: Downscaling HD to SD for DVD SP, a better way?
on Apr 15, 2011 at 8:12:00 pm

Great I'll try it out! That's just the kind of answer I was looking for, thanks Noah. I had a feeling it should be doable.

Best,
Dave
PSV


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