I am finishing a project to HDCam for broadcast. The project is 6 22 minute episodes, shot in XDCAM EX, at 23.976 (35 mbits/sec). My delivery requirement is HDCam 59.94i Drop Frame. All episodes were cut at 23.98, and timed to fit the 00:22:20:00 timing required by the broadcaster. I have output the 23.98 sequences at their current settings, and then imported those files back into FCP. When I drop those files into a 60i sequence, FCP adds the pulldown which looks fine, and if the sequence is set to Non Drop Frame, the timing is exactly the same. My problem is, when I set the sequence to Drop Frame timecode, it ends up being exactly 14 frames over time.
I know that Drop Frame is just another way of counting, and that it does not add or take away frames, but is this normal? Should I be re-timing the 23.98 edits to compensate for this?
Yup...23.98 is NDF only and the timing will differ from the DF delivery you are required to have. So you have to adjust your NDF timeline so that when you output it to DF, or they dub it from an NDF master to DF, it comes out right. Here:
I use the TIMECODE CALC app I menitoned in the blog. Just type in your NDF timing at 23.98, then choose DF 23.98 and you get the correct DF time. 23.98 DF doesn't exist, that option is in the calculator only for this timing conversion. So what you need to do is type in your DF timing, then switch to NDF to find out what your NDF 23.98 sequence should be.
Or use my other method of making SLUG fit the proper time needed DF, then pasting into an NDF timeline to get the proper time.
I somewhat managed to figure out this on my own but I appreciate you responding to confirm that. I also am going to add the pulldown using AE rather than FCP so as to have a proper 3:2. It's too bad the people I am working for had to mix 29.97 and 23.98. I would have just cut everything down to time using the calculator you linked, and then added the 3:2 during the HDCam output. Oh well, life can't always be easy.