Final field order: working with a mixture of upper/lower and progressive source material
I am working with a range of source material…
Some are lower field, others upper and a few are progressive.
So matching the source material to my sequence and then export settings gets a little complicated!
Through experimentation I have found that I appear to get the best results by converting my premiere sequence settings to progressive and then modiftying each clip so they are all conform to 'progressive scan' (through the 'interpret footage' function). By best, I am referring to decent quality as well as a more harmonious feel across all the material. I also feel that the upper field footage looks better than when I ask it to conform to Lower field. I am also using still photographs and the progressive scan seems to make the panning smoother. However, in Encore when authoring the DVD it then transcodes as lower field first.
The final product will be a professional SD Widescreen DVD distributed in both PAL and NTSC regions.
Through research on forums the advice is to not deinterlace but much of this advice is quite dated and doesn't really deal with the issues of a range of source material, so I would appreciate some more up-to-date information.
1) Is setting the source material and sequence to having no field order the best way to deal with this mixture of footage?
2) Will the fact that the sequence settings are progressive mean some DVD/TVs won't play it or is ok as the final Encore transcoding is lower field first. (I am using adobe dynamic link to send the project from premiere to encore).
3) If it is better to keep the footage interlaced which field order should I opt for and, for example, if I choose lower field (which would make sense as it is the final output) should I convert all footage to conform to this? I have tried this (when experimenting with PAL) but I feel the progressive route is resulting in better results, contrary to what people who know more about this than me are saying. Perhaps my eye for this kind of thing isn't as good or perhaps the adobe dynamic link is doing something special!?
Lastly, does any of this make a difference to the regional differences of PAL and NTSC? Will working in progressive and then changing the region and field order to lower in encore make creating the two different regional DVD easier?
Many Thanks in advance,
first of all:
your MPEG-encoding MUST follow the field-order of your source, otherwise you´ll get terrible field-problems in the final MPEG/product.
or in other words: if your video is upper OR lower field first, your encoder must encode it the same way.
and HERE´s the problem: the encoder could not switch sceenwise!
meaning: you need create a sequenz within premiere that has a dedicated field-order (upper or lower) and transcode the final MPEG the same way.
I know encore has a lower first-default-trascoding-setting but this is wrong for all interlaced HD-files and also wrong for most PAL-codecs, only NTSC SD is lower field mostly.
your 2nd option to go progressive is no good idea as well, as you´ll loose picture-quality, especially when there´s a lot motion in picture.
so the conclusion might be:
select one field-dominance that the most clips have for your sequenz, use a field-shift on these clips that have the other.
afterwards use media encoder to transcode your MPEG and use this assets for authoring.
Thank you for your response. I have a couple of questions about your answer...
I am creating the project in PAL and then sending it off to a company to create the NTSC version.
The dominant field is lower ff but as you said this codec is wrong for most PAL codecs should I make them upper-field instead or persist with lower?
I usually just use the adobe dynamic link to send the project to encore. I have rarely exported it as an MPEG-DVD out of premiere.
Could you tell me what you meant when you said:
'afterwards use media encoder to transcode your MPEG and use this asset for authoring.'
What would I need to to this for and what settings would be necessary?
(Is this better than allowing the software to do it automatically using Dynamic link?)
I have a feeling maybe these two questions are linked but can't quite figure it out! If you have the time - I would appreciate it.
this infos brings your question and workflow into another spot as you´re editing in 25fps and need to do an international DVD.
it´s a worst case scenario if you´re creating a PAL-DVD and then give it to the US and your partner ist creating a NTSC-DVD out of it.
you need to do a format-cross-conversion!! from PAL to NTSC and a NTSC-DVD is required! NTSC-DVDs working on ALL DVD-players worldwide.
so a different workflow is neccessary here!
as far as I understand you´re editing in 25fps interlaced. the most easy (and common) way to go to NTSC from a PAL-source is to do a conforming of the final film - conforming means you will speed down your 25fps-film to 23.98fps - this is 4% slower.
as I stated: this is common procedure during the last decades and mostly used for nearly all productions that go between europe and us.
the main point is: NTSC 23.98fps is progressive, and there is no other way to go.
how can you do this!?
1. create a sequenz that´s been 1080p25 or PAL SD in 25p.
2. edit your film and at the end you should deinterlace ALL clips that´s been on your timeline
3. export your film as an uncompressed movie to your harddisc as AVI or MOV using DNX HD or Apple ProRes, depending if you´re on PC or MAC.
4. reimport the (exported) film and slow it down/conform/interprete footage as...
5. create a new NTSC 23.98-sequenz incl. chapter-marker
end then 2 possibilities:
6a. dynamic link it to encore to author and transcode within encore
6b. transcode the film with the export-function of premiere.
7. author the disc within encore.
I can not tell you exact settings for the DVD-transcoding, as more infos are required (duration, numbers of audio-tracks used on DVD). depending you have to do a bitbudgeting, so your data will fit on the disc.