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Output formats

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Bill in Toronto
Output formats
on Jul 18, 2007 at 3:11:17 pm

Need to familiarize myself with some aspects of MAYA, before I jump into a creation with a colleague.

Once the architecture and animation frames have been rendered what are the available output formats for the applications
Broadcast quality (4x3)

Is there a table of standards for MAYA media transfers anyone could point me to?

Also, if there is a good MAYA FAQ you could point to, I'd be very grateful.

Thanks so much.

Bill in Toronto

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Glenn Moore
Re: Output formats
on Jul 19, 2007 at 1:49:04 am

I think what you're looking for is in the FCheck applet. Once you rendder an image or scene, you can Save As several formats. FCheck is a standalone app that works with Maya. You don't have to open Maya to use it. Once you open your image or scene, just go to the Save As option and you'll see what your options are. I hope that is what you're asking.

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Steve Sayer
Re: Output formats
on Jul 19, 2007 at 2:46:47 am

My guess is that he was asking about file output formats at rendertime.

Maya can output many different file types, a comprehensive list is included in the documentation (search for 'file formats' for a list). The best workflow is to render out an image sequence; this will produce hundreds or thousands of image files (TIFFs, JPGs, etc.) which will then need to be encoded for playback.

However, the process of getting these images onto a DVD or into a web application is best left to third-party software. Editing and compositing applications such as Adobe Premiere or After Effects, Final Cut Pro, Shake, and so on are common solutions.

Fcheck is meant to be a small, efficient previewer, not a robust encoding application. It can convert files from one format to another, but it's not the tool for creating final output ready to put on DVD or the web.


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Bill in Toronto
Re: Output formats
on Aug 4, 2007 at 2:41:44 am

I'm working with someone who constantly talks about "broadcast" quality versus "web quality" in regard to the rendering of animation cells into a movie for DVD or Web, that is a moving segment of animation of about 30 to 60 seconds. He always talks about rendering to these levels of "dpi" quality (DVD versus Web).

He talks about outputting from MAYA the animation cells at 72dpi for web, and encoding from "broadcast" quality for a DVD in order to achieve a high level of texture, brightness and colour.

I am much more familiar with the rendering of video images from raw AVI files which are directly from a camcorder through a NLE, but I just can't understand the relevance to high versus low resolution, e.g web versus DVD as it is expressed by the gentleman. (One requiring much more time for rendering than the other!?)

Does MAYA output in DPI values when rendering to moving video frames? For video as I understand it, DPI is not a relevant term, but applies to print.

Thanks for your insight,

Bill in Toronto


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Chad Briggs
Re: Output formats
on Aug 4, 2007 at 4:42:42 pm

DPI isn't used in the video world. DPI is a print term (dots per inch) that lets you know how many... well... dots per inch a printer can pack on a page. All computer based signals process at 72dpi. That being said, there are diff broadcast standards that use diff file sizes/frame rates. Here are a sampling:
NTSC 720x486 29.97fps
NTSC DV 720x480 29.97fps
HD 720p 1280x720 60p fps
HD 1080i 1920x1080 60i fpts

These are the more common BROADCAST formats (in the states anyway) , there are many more AQUISITON formats, but they usually get converted to one of these for final output. Do some googling on this and you'll find a lot more answers than i can type up. Framerates for web video can be near any size/framerate, it's the Wild Wild West of standards. That being said, there are sizes/framerates that people use more often.

It sounds like your friend is explaining himself poorly or getting his terms mixed up. A typical workflow would be to render your frames to a uncompressed format from Maya, do any compositing, render out to uncompressed again conforming to a broadcast spec, then out to tape.

This is a reaaly BIG nutshell of stuff i've just talked about, there are all kinds of specifics, but hopefully this will set some stuff straight.

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