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Quickest workflow FCP timeline to DVD. Compression guru's please!

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Greg Barker
Quickest workflow FCP timeline to DVD. Compression guru's please!
on Sep 26, 2010 at 8:53:47 pm

Hello all, sorry this is long! I've searched the forum and have tried lots of possible workflows but I still have not found a solution that is good enough for my needs. I really would appreciate any tips to any of the tests I ran below that would help to reduce my export to DVD times to as low as possible while retaining as much quality as possible. I'm open to any suggestions especially if anyone is running a similar scenario trying to get a FCP timeline out to DVD with either minor edits or Chapter Markers. Unfortunately it has to be a DVD and cannot be a digital file like H.264 or MP4.

Here is the scenario. I am shooting a sporting event in XDCAMEX 720p60. I add the footage to my FCP project and then add the maximum number (99) Chapter Markers at different parts of the event so that I can review those parts later. Then I need to export the sequence with the Chapter Markers to SD DVD, I don't need a menu. I don't do any editing of the footage other than adding Chapter Markers. The total sequence length is about 30 minutes and I'm trying to export this on a MacBook Pro, 2.66GHz Intel Core i7 laptop.

I have tried lots of different scenarios but I need to get the total time for compressing and exporting as close to 30 minutes as possible without having to lug my Mac Pro on location with me. Surprisingly, my Mac Pro hasn't significantly reduced times in many of these workflow tests anyway. Here are some of the scenarios I have tried.

Test 1: Take XDCAMEX 720p60 sequence and export using 'Share', 'Send to Compressor', with 'create DVD' checked. That exported in about an hour and 20 minutes.

Test 2: Take XDCAMEX 720p60 sequence and export using QuickTime Movie with 'Current Settings' and 'Chapter Markers', 'Make Movie Self-Contained' unchecked, then take the reference file into Compressor and apply DVD M2V compression with constant bitrate at 7.7Mbps. Then create the DVD using the M2V in DVDSP. Total process is about an hour and 5 minutes.

Test 3: Take XDCAMEX 720p60 sequence and export using QuickTime Movie with 'Current Settings' and 'Chapter Markers', 'Make Movie Self-Contained' checked, then take the stand alone file into Compressor and apply DVD M2V compression with constant bitrate at 7.7Mbps. Then create the DVD using the M2V in DVDSP. Total process is about an hour and 10 minutes.

Test 4: Figuring I could lower the time by using a "less compressed" file format, I captured simultaneously to AJA KiPro at ProRes 422 LT NTSC Squeezed and then flagged the clips anamorphic once in FCP. Then I used the work flow in Test 1. Take ProRes 422 LT NTSC Anamorphic sequence and export using 'Share', 'Send to Compressor', with 'create DVD' checked. Trying to eliminate time by not requiring resizing on export. Exported in an hour and 5 minutes.

Test 5: Captured simultaneously to ProRes 422 LT NTSC Squeezed and then flagged the clips anamorphic once in FCP. Then I used the work flow in Test 2. Export using QuickTime Movie with 'Current Settings', 'Chapter Markers', and 'Make Movie Self-Contained' unchecked,. Take ProRes 422 LT NTSC Anamorphic sequence and export by taking the reference file into Compressor and applying DVD M2V compression with constant bitrate at 7.7Mbps. Then create the DVD using the M2V in DVDSP. Total process is about 50 minutes.

Test 6: Captured simultaneously to ProRes 422 LT NTSC Squeezed and then flagged the clips anamorphic once in FCP. Then I used the work flow in Test 3. Export using QuickTime Movie with 'Current Settings', 'Chapter Markers', 'Make Movie Self-Contained' checked. Take ProRes 422 LT NTSC Anamorphic sequence and export by taking the reference file into Compressor and appling DVD M2V compression with constant nitrate at 7.7Mbps. Then create the DVD using the M2V in DVDSP. Total process is about 55 minutes.

Test 7: Finally, I dropped ProRes 422 LT NTSC Letterbox clips into Roxio Toast and burned them to DVD. That took about 43 minutes but the quality was bad no matter how I adjusted the compression settings.

I've tried to put the project on an external drive and writing the DVD files back to the desktop. I've tried running the project from the desktop and writing the files out to an external drive but neither of those scenarios really reduced export times.

Is there some other hardware item that could help me accomplish this? Does anyone know of a DVD Recorder that could be triggered Start/Stop by the camera probably using firewire and would allow you to either "mark" or "chapter mark" with each start/stop? I have a Pioneer but it doesn't work in that way. It will take source input via firewire but will not trigger recording via the camera.

Thanks in advance for you help!

- Greg

MacBook Pro 2.66GHz Core i7 - 8gb RAM, Mac Pro 2 x 2.93GHz Quad-Core - 16gb RAM


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Chris Tompkins
Re: Quickest workflow FCP timeline to DVD. Compression guru's please!
on Sep 26, 2010 at 10:39:48 pm

Look, ur beating a dead horse here. The compression times are normal for a laptop.

Stick with #2 workflow.

Chris Tompkins
Video Atlanta


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eric pautsch
Re: Quickest workflow FCP timeline to DVD. Compression guru's please!
on Sep 26, 2010 at 11:13:50 pm

This question probably asked on a daily basis here on the cow.

Bottom line is that you need to have a NTSC uncompressed or lossless 16x9 Anamorphic 720x480 (29.97 or 23.98) sequence to start off with - this is DVD resolution. PAL 720x576

Do not pass go or collect anything unless you nested you edited sequence into a 720x480 (29.97 or 23.98)

From there Export with compressor and set up your encoding parameters accordingly. If you plan on using another encoder you would export out an uncompressed QT and send that into the encoder



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Ernie Santella
Re: Quickest workflow FCP timeline to DVD. Compression guru's please!
on Sep 27, 2010 at 12:13:28 am

It's actually faster to export a QT Reference vs. a QT self-contained movie. Plus, it you export a reference, you can still work in FCP whereas a QT self-contained export, you have to wait until it finishes exporting.


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Rafael Amador
Re: Quickest workflow FCP timeline to DVD. Compression guru's please!
on Sep 27, 2010 at 1:41:32 am

Hi Greg,
I would try setting the sequence in FC at p30 instead of p60.
Not sure, but it may scratch a bit of time.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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