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Soft video quality on DVD when exporting through Compressor

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Chris Sebes
Soft video quality on DVD when exporting through Compressor
on Jun 16, 2017 at 6:06:45 pm

So through some trial and error, I've been trying to find the best way to output the HD edits in Final Cut Pro X without getting lousy quality when burning to DVD with DVD Studio Pro. In the past year, I've had quality issues where I've just not been happy with the quality of my authored discs. I recently had the opportunity to test out some new workflow methods.

In the past, when an edit was completed, I used the "Send to Compressor" option from FCPX. In Compressor, I'd use the MPEG2 with VBR settings around 5.5 and 8 Mbps for video. I tried CBR at 8Mbps. I'd even tried letting Compressor figure out the data rate. But every time I encoded and authored, I would get soft-looking video along with jagged on-screen text. I even tried exporting a ProRes422 file from FCPX and sending that through Compressor. Every instance seemed to point to Compressor as the cause of the sub-par video.

What I ended up doing was not using Compressor at all. Instead, I exported the edited file from FCPX as an HD ProRes422HQ Quicktime (the same format as the footage that was supplied to me), then imported it directly into DVD Studio Pro. I adjusted its encoder settings to make sure to use the best amount of space on the disc, then let DVDSP do the encoding. The results were noticeably better and the client approved the difference.

I'm curious if anyone else has had issues with lackluster encoding results and what workflow they're using.

Chris Sebes
Senior Video Editor
http://www.MediaMixStudios.com


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