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MPEG Streamclip: NTSC or 16:9?

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Kyle Cox
MPEG Streamclip: NTSC or 16:9?
on Jul 28, 2010 at 11:14:52 pm

Hey guys,

I'm importing ripped DVD footage into FCP, using MPEG Streamclip to convert the footage.

Now, the DVD footage that I am using is NTSC 720 x 480, so obviously, this is what I should choose in MPEG Streamclip. However, I don't like the 'square' look of NTSC, and would rather view the footage in 16:9.

In FCP, Im aware that all I need to do is check the 'anamorphic' box next to a clip to edit it in 16:9 view.

My problem: when I do this, i seem to get slight glitches a few times throughout the footage (random scrambles of the picture for a split second, or black fuzzyness around certain parts of the clip).

My question: Should I start converting my files into 16:9 in MPEG Streamclip BEFORE bringing them into FCP? Here is what I mean:


Will converting it to 16:9 solve my playback problems, or will this simply lower my image quality? If it degrades the picture in ANY way, I can't consider it as an option.

Let me know what you think! ALL help is greatly appeciated!


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Shane Ross
Re: MPEG Streamclip: NTSC or 16:9?
on Jul 28, 2010 at 11:22:26 pm

If your footage is 4:3, then choosing 16:9 will only stretch the footage out oddly, make people look wider, fatter. It doesn't magically make the 4:3 footage into cropped 16:9.

Shane



GETTING ORGANIZED WITH FINAL CUT PRO DVD...don't miss it.
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Joey Burnham
Re: MPEG Streamclip: NTSC or 16:9?
on Jul 29, 2010 at 12:24:05 am

[Kyle Cox] "Will converting it to 16:9 solve my playback problems, or will this simply lower my image quality? If it degrades the picture in ANY way, I can't consider it as an option."

No it won't solve your playback problems, and yes you will lose quality. You have to squish the footage 33% in on the y-axis, then blow up enough to fill the frame. No way to go from 4x3 to 16x9 without losing resolution.



[Kyle Cox] "I don't like the 'square' look of NTSC"

Not trying to bust your balls but NTSC can be 16x9 as well, it's just called anamorphic.

People "lived" with 4x3 for many, many years and all was well. You'll be good to go.

Joey


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Kyle Cox
Re: MPEG Streamclip: NTSC or 16:9?
on Jul 29, 2010 at 4:27:32 am

Thank you for your help. My sequence settings are set at 16:9 NTSC in FCP right now...so I guess I'll just stick with converting it to NTSC and then checking the 'anamorphic' box. Maybe the playback problem is an issue with my computer's speed?
My stats are
Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
Processor Speed: 3.06 GHz
Number Of Processors: 1
Total Number Of Cores: 2
L2 Cache: 3 MB
Memory: 4 GB
Bus Speed: 1.07 GHz

Sometimes re-playing the footage does not produce the same glitchy results, but most of the time it does.

Also, I was thinking the problem might have had something to do with the DVD rip...maybe it was a bad one. Any ideas?


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Jonathan Ziegler
Re: MPEG Streamclip: NTSC or 16:9?
on Jul 29, 2010 at 4:42:24 pm

DVD footage is heavily compressed. A small speck of dust on the disk can cause complete chaos. I'd try re-ripping the footage. If glitches appear in the same places, it's likely a problem with the disk.

Instead of MPEG Streamclip, use Compressor - it's a far more robust app.

What are you using for the rip? I like Handbrake (needs the MPEG2 plugin for Quicktime Pro or Final Cut Pro installed to rip DVD tracks) with good results as you just tell it which clips you want and it rips only those - you can do multiple passes, too if you have a bad spot on the disk. If you want the whole disk all at once, I like Mac the Ripper, BUT if there are anti-theft features (like null tracks) or macrovision on the disk, you need the "beta" version which you can get for a donation. Both apps are freeware.

Of course, the usual rules apply: if it ain't yours and you don't have the rights, don't go making copies, it's illegal, you'll get caught and fined thousands. On the other hand, these little freeware apps make work for clients way easier and I can set my old G4 to ripping tracks and disks while I work on my other machines.

Jonathan Ziegler
http://www.electrictiger.com/
520-360-8293


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