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Capturing DV via Firewire and SDI

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Karim Daire
Capturing DV via Firewire and SDI
on Jun 6, 2010 at 2:02:44 pm

Hi,

I got a general question... oh, it just became two questions! :)

1. I am working with DVCam Footage and at the moment only got a DSR20 Player, so I capture with Firewire set up to QT DV-PAL Clips.
I usually capture via SDI on a Matrox MXO2 to QT ProRest Clips.
Actually I wonder if there is really any difference in the quality for basic Final Cut Editing (so no compositing work here) between the Firweire DV Clips and the SDI ProRes Clips. Any hints?

2. Is there any possibility of capturing DV to ProRes via Firewire? I know FCP supports HDV to ProRes but I can't find a way of getting DV to ProRes unless using SDI on my MXO2.

Thanks for any hints in advance,

Karim


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Capturing DV via Firewire and SDI
on Jun 6, 2010 at 3:40:30 pm

1. Big differences. The video itself is no different, but working with the DV codec will erode your text and graphics horribly, while ProRes or any other 4:2:2 codec will not. You could achieve the se by capturing to the DVCPro50 codec, but with much smaller file sizes.

2. You can capture HDV to ProRes via FireWire, but not DV.

David Roth Weiss
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John Pale
Re: Capturing DV via Firewire and SDI
on Jun 6, 2010 at 3:54:29 pm

One thing that people don't emphasize enough is that any benefit of working with DV captured as ProRes or Uncompressed will be lost if you master back to DV tape. The footage will look beautiful in FCP, but get hit with DV compression again by the VTR before it hits the tape.


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Alan Okey
Re: Capturing DV via Firewire and SDI
on Jun 6, 2010 at 5:40:46 pm

[John Pale] "any benefit of working with DV captured as ProRes or Uncompressed will be lost if you master back to DV tape"

"Mastering" to DV tape is an oxymoron. It would be far better to master to a ProRes file and either archive it to a Blu-ray data disc or wait for the opportunity or budget to lay it off to a higher quality tape format like Digital Betacam or DVCPRO 50.


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Karim Daire
Re: Capturing DV via Firewire and SDI
on Jun 6, 2010 at 5:55:53 pm

Thanks a lot for your answers.

So to sum it up... there is no quality difference unless I work in a DV Sequence and add graphics/text/composites that get messed up by the DV Compression?

Like I wrote there will be no composites but a lot of texts and graphics added in between.
Since with my equipment given I have no other way but capturing in DV via Firewire I guess the best way would be working with DV Material in a ProRes Sequence and add graphics/titles there and then mastering to a ProRes QT (I do not playout on DV).

Is that right? And if so, should I transcode the material to ProRes via Compressor or just throw the DV Material in a ProRes Sequence and render it in FCP?


Karim

-Karim-
Freelance Cutter, Compositor and Animator from Hamburg/Germany


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Alan Okey
Re: Capturing DV via Firewire and SDI
on Jun 6, 2010 at 5:59:10 pm

[Karim Daire] "should I transcode the material to ProRes via Compressor or just throw the DV Material in a ProRes Sequence and render it in FCP? "

The latter option is fine. No need to transcode DV to ProRes first, just change your sequence compression setting to ProRes 422 and leave the dimensions at 720x480.


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John Pale
Re: Capturing DV via Firewire and SDI
on Jun 6, 2010 at 6:18:27 pm

I agree. I work mainly on broadcast, so this is not an issue....we would never otput to DVCAM. But smaller shops (industrial, corporate,etc) may only have DVCAM equipment and may not have the option of file based delivery. There would be no need for them to go the ProRes or Uncompressed route...just a waste of disk space.


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