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How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?

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Isabelle Carbonell
How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 4:28:36 pm

Hi there to anyone able to pitch in,

I'm a filmmaker that often does international work in other languages. I need to give movie files to transcribers and translators often. I used to "burn" FCP timecode generator (and compressor's got one too) onto the movies I'd give my transcribers but that is a time consuming and stupid process.

Quicktime now reads the original timecode (SMPTE) as a function (along with the normal 0 start and also 0 start frames). If you are a FCP user you know that getting a transcription in the original SMPTE timecode is much better because your Viewer (Preview) window in FCP works off of the original SMPTE timecode... not from 0, hence making it a hassel to read all the time transcriptions associated to the translations to enter subtitles.

OK. Yall don't need to know all that necessarily.

Here's what I need to learn: How can I EXPORT and COMPRESS original HD footage that contains the ORIGINAL SMPTE timecode, and RETAIN the SMPTE timecode in the newly compressed and small file.

This file, ideally, I could send to my transcriber all the way in Qatar, India, or who knows where, where with their slow connection they can download it in time and give me the transcription with the smpte timecode.

Thanks for any help, let me know if I should provide any more specs.

Best
Isabelle


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walter biscardi
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 4:46:48 pm

[Isabelle Carbonell] "Here's what I need to learn: How can I EXPORT and COMPRESS original HD footage that contains the ORIGINAL SMPTE timecode, and RETAIN the SMPTE timecode in the newly compressed and small file."

All quicktime movies do retain the timecode associated with the original movie file no matter how much you compress them and even if you do an audio only file. We have transcriptions done all the time with quicktime files and the transcriber gives us back the timecode from the original clip. Our clips are compressed all the way down to 160x120 because she doesn't really need the video, just the audio.

You just drag the raw clip from your Capture Scratch into Compressor and compress that file. That has the original timecode from the camera. Your Transcriber then uses Quicktime Player to view the TC instead of the zero counter.

Our Transcriber has software that includes a foot pedal just like the old tape transcription machines had so she doesn't even have to type the TC in. She just hits the pedal and the TC is automatically stamped into the document.

We've done something like 100 hours of transcriptions over the past two years for our continuing documentaries and haven't had a lick of trouble with TC matching up.

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" now in Post.

Creative Cow Forum Host:
Apple Final Cut Pro, Apple Motion, Apple Color, AJA Kona, Business & Marketing, Maxx Digital.

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Ben Holmes
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 4:49:33 pm

Scatch my response - and thanks for the useful info Walter, this will definitely be used for our next batch of translations...

Edit Out Ltd
----------------------------
FCP Editor/Trainer/System Consultant
EVS/VT Supervisor for live broadcast
RED camera transfer/post
Independent Director/Producer

http://www.blackmagic-design.com/casestudies/detail.asp?case=therydercup


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Bouke Vahl
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 4:56:22 pm

[walter biscardi] "All quicktime movies do retain the timecode associated with the original movie file no matter how much you compress them and even if you do an audio only file"

True if you use Compressor, NOT true if you use almost any other application to transcode!

And be warned, Walter's statement about audio only ONLY works if you put the audio in a QT, it will NOT retain TC if you render to Mp3, wave or Aiff.

But MP3 is going to be big in this department. Sound Devices puts TC metadata in the Mp3 header, and more and more transcriptions applications (including mine) can read it.

If interested, i'll make something to stamp Mp3 with the original QT tc.
(it's a small job, and i'll do it for free if there is a need)



Bouke

http://www.videotoolshed.com/
smart tools for video pro's


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Isabelle Carbonell
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 5:19:53 pm

Interesting.

Okay, one thing I forgot to add. Since I didn't need to do any editing to the original footage, I just loaded it straight into Quicktime and exported it FROM quicktime. (I wanted to keep working on a project inside FCP while it was processing, and its typically faster than Compressor)

Not through FCP, not through Compressor.

I'll go ahead and try compressor and report if that worked.

Thanks for all the fast replies from everyone!

-Isabelle
http://www.izaca.com


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Isabelle Carbonell
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 5:40:55 pm


[walter biscardi] "All quicktime movies do retain the timecode associated with the original movie file no matter how much you compress them and even if you do an audio only file"

True if you use Compressor, NOT true if you use almost any other application to transcode!

And be warned, Walter's statement about audio only ONLY works if you put the audio in a QT, it will NOT retain TC if you render to Mp3, wave or Aiff.


Okay... it doesn't work. Here's my workflow (very simple).

1. I have my original .mov files (when these are opened in quicktime, the option to select the timecode is available).

2. I drag these into compressor and export the smallest .mov file possible (but I keep the audio good quality for transcribing purposes). Either way, it's H.264 100kbps, and exports to a .mov file.

3. Once exported I open the compressed file with Quicktime, and it doesn't allow me to see the original timecode anymore.

What am I doing wrong?

Thanks again for all your help
Isabelle
http://www.izaca.com


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walter biscardi
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 9:19:30 pm

[Isabelle Carbonell] "3. Once exported I open the compressed file with Quicktime, and it doesn't allow me to see the original timecode anymore.

What am I doing wrong?"


No clue honestly. That's exactly what we do here all day every day. In fact we retain the TC from the FCP timelines when we export from there.

We retain the original TC on all our quicktime files generated through Compressor on our end. have done so for years now.

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" now in Post.

Creative Cow Forum Host:
Apple Final Cut Pro, Apple Motion, Apple Color, AJA Kona, Business & Marketing, Maxx Digital.

Blog!

Twitter!


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John Pale
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 11:36:32 pm

Did you try what i suggested below?


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Ben Holmes
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 6:00:34 pm

Bouke - I think there's a need. an mp3 would be ideal for transcription, and for when you want to avoid translators coming to you rather than emailing them the interview. In my experience, this question is often asked, and as good to know as Walter's solution is, this would be better.

Ben

Edit Out Ltd
----------------------------
FCP Editor/Trainer/System Consultant
EVS/VT Supervisor for live broadcast
RED camera transfer/post
Independent Director/Producer

http://www.blackmagic-design.com/casestudies/detail.asp?case=therydercup


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Elijah Lynn
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Sep 11, 2010 at 4:20:44 am

Who do you use for transcription? The one that knows how to insert timecode from Quicktime?


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Morgana Benedetti
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jul 19, 2014 at 1:40:16 pm

Hi Walter, reviving this old post because I'm encountering a weird problem and I'm hoping you can help me with this. I have interviews that I need to send to translators, I transcoded them using Sony's Content Browser and I have been telling them to rely on the timecode from quicktime 7 as stated here, however I crossed checked with the original clip on the content browser player and the timecodes don't always match... Sometimes they do, sometimes they don't, it's very strange, I'm not sure why, any possible reasons?

Also I've noticed that when converting the source timecode is lost, so I'm now displaying it directly into the clip and then export it with fcp7 so the timecode is visible even when converting, just as a FYI in case it help someone else.


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Ben Holmes
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 4:47:45 pm

A quick trawl of teh intertubes drags this up - it's free too:

http://www.qtsync.com/qtsync.php

See if that gives you a workaround - you cannot export clip timecode with a QT export in FCP...

Ben

Edit Out Ltd
----------------------------
FCP Editor/Trainer/System Consultant
EVS/VT Supervisor for live broadcast
RED camera transfer/post
Independent Director/Producer

http://www.blackmagic-design.com/casestudies/detail.asp?case=therydercup


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John Pale
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 7:56:30 pm

[Ben Holmes] "you cannot export clip timecode with a QT export in FCP... "

There is an easy workaround though. Just export the clip using the compression of your choice, then drag it back into the browser. Double click it to load into the Viewer. Go to Modify/Timecode and add the correct starting timecode to the clip. Voila…a timecode track is now added and you now have a compressed clip with timecode.


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Isabelle Carbonell
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 11:20:50 pm

[John Pale] "[Ben Holmes] "you cannot export clip timecode with a QT export in FCP... "

There is an easy workaround though. Just export the clip using the compression of your choice, then drag it back into the browser. Double click it to load into the Viewer. Go to Modify/Timecode and add the correct starting timecode to the clip. Voila…a timecode track is now added and you now have a compressed clip with timecode."


THANK YOU. THANK YOU. THANK YOU.

That worked, easy as pie, no issues.

I really don't know why it won't export the smpte timecode but this workaround takes me two seconds so its no issue at all. Really thanks.

Thanks everyone else for trying to help. Not sure what's going on in the end.

Best
Isabelle
http://www.izaca.com


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John Fishback
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?
on Jan 23, 2010 at 11:32:48 pm

We have to supply mp3s to our transcribers. Having tc would be a tremendous improvement, Bourke.

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz 8 GB RAM OS 10.5.8 QT7.6.4 Kona 3 Dual Cinema 23 ATI Radeon HD 3870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.1, Motion 4.0.1, Comp 3.5.1, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.1)

Pro Tools HD w SYNC IO, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec Monitors, PrimaLT ISDN


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cowcowcowcowcow
Bouke Vahl
Ok, i've made it so!
on Jan 24, 2010 at 6:27:35 pm

Guys,
Since a couple of you needed it, i've made it.
Download from here:
http://www.videotoolshed.com/product/57/tc-to-mp3/2

Principle:
Convert your QT files to MP3, but make sure the MP3 files have the same name as the QT's (except of course the extension)

I could make something that does the conversion as well, but then i have to charge serious money. (MP3 is a protected file format, i then should get a licence and that will be very expensive)

So pick anything you have to do the conversion from QT to MP3!

Then point my app. to the MP3 folder, and the QT folder and let it do it's thing.
(both Mp3 and QT may live in the same folder if you like...)

It will batch process each MP3 in the given folder, adding reel, speed and TC info to the MP3's metadata.
It works with my Transcriber application, and the resulting files 'should' be compatible with those generated by Sound Devices recorders. So they 'should' be compatible with more transcription software!

No guarantees, as it was a bit more work than i've expected.
(I thought i had Mp3 metadata in my toolbox, but i was wrong so i had to start from scratch...)

A warning, it WILL work destructive on your MP3 files, so test with copies!

And it WILL nag you each time it starts. (I need to make a living just as everyone else.)
But there are no demo limitations.

Last but not least, i do appreciate feedback, positive or negative.


Bouke

http://www.videotoolshed.com/
smart tools for video pro's


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John Fishback
Re: Ok, i've made it so!
on Jan 24, 2010 at 8:36:56 pm

Fantastic. Thanks, Bouke.

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz 8 GB RAM OS 10.5.8 QT7.6.4 Kona 3 Dual Cinema 23 ATI Radeon HD 3870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.1, Motion 4.0.1, Comp 3.5.1, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.1)

Pro Tools HD w SYNC IO, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec Monitors, PrimaLT ISDN


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Bouke Vahl
Re: Ok, i've made it so!
on Jan 24, 2010 at 10:45:51 pm

I don't care the least about your thanks.

TEST IT!!!

If it works, i want to know.
if it DOES NOT work, i want to know.

You don't have to thank me for my effort. I've put in some work, i expect the same from you.

To get the show on the road, i need effort from everyone involved.
So move your butt and do real world test, then reply, positive or negative. No other way to get to where we want to be!





Bouke

http://www.videotoolshed.com/
smart tools for video pro's


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Dave Beaty
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?de it so!
on Feb 2, 2010 at 4:42:41 pm

I've been working on this problem today but for another reason. I have been shooting with the Canon 5D and recording audio on our Firestore in DV Quicktime with timecode synced to a Denke Timecode Slate.

So I have about 500 DV Clips I want to convert to audio, as I don't need the video, and I need to retain the Timecode.

Compressor does not retain timecode transcoding to AIFF. Also, if I select Quicktime, and "Disable" the video track in the settings, the timecode is also dumped in the output Quicktime audio file.

I looked at all the settings in compressor, but can't see anything that would change this. Any ideas how I could keep the timecode, but ditch the video - (to save the disk space)

Dave

Dave Beaty
Dreamtime Entertainment
1625 SE 46th St
Cape Coral FL 33904
239-549-4081
800-446-7575
dave@dreamtimeentertainment.com
http://www.dreamtimeentertainment.com


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Bouke Vahl
Re: How to keep Original SMPTE timecode AND export a compressed file?de it so!
on Feb 2, 2010 at 5:44:14 pm

First:
There is NO WAY you can export to AIFF and have timecode, unless you put the .aiff in a QT container with a QT tc track.

dunno how your files are, have a look in QT player.
If you see a TC track, you're golden.
If they are plain DV files, you have to do some other magic.

To get where you want to be you can use my QTchange app.
(free, download from my site), and trash the video channel.
Or, extract the audio and save as BWF.

If you decide to trash the video, you end up with files that are the same size. Next step to do is to do a (batch) save as self contained.

hth,


Bouke

http://www.videotoolshed.com/
smart tools for video pro's


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