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Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?

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george mandl
Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 4:13:08 pm

Hello,
I've been asked to set up a screening for a movie, and wanted to get an opinion or two on whether or not this system will work. The screening facility has a Mac Mini with the following specs:

2.26 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
4GB 1067 MHz DDR3

Mac Os X Version 10.6.3


We have, to date, been screening directly out of a Mac Pro tower with a Kona3 card, 6GB ram, and this has worked just fine.

The cutting format is Apple ProRes 422 (HQ) 1920x1080.

Do you think a native Quicktime export of an 80 minute movie will play cleanly on their Mac Mini?

Thanks so much for your two cents, and my apologies if this is not the right forum for this post.
George


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Andy George
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 4:58:50 pm

The speed of your hard drive is more of a factor than CPU and RAM when playing large HD movies. Placing the movie on the mini's internal drive should give you the fastest playback speed if there is room for it.

A few things to consider-

Prores is Final Cut only so FCP would need to be installed on the mini.

Prores (HQ) is a 10bit codec. Without the (HQ) it's an 8bit codec. Unless you shot on a very high end system like a Red Camera or Film, your not gaining anything by using the (HQ) version. It's just making the file larger. The 8bit version will be much smaller and the quality will be the same.

If this task were handed to me I would create a lossles H.264 for delivery.
(put it in compressor and set Data rate to automatic/better)
The file size will be drastically reduced. Acquisition and delivery are where this codec does a great job.

-Andy George
Senior Editor
http://www.chiselindustries.com


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Michael Sacci
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 5:11:01 pm

ProRes is 10-bit not 8-bit, there is no good reason to use (HQ) for standard video codecs, and several reasons not to, use LT if you want a chance at smoother playback. You can playback ProRes from any system if you get the player codec from Apple, FCP does not need to be installed to play it back.

But do yourself a favor and encode the movie to H264, your can get great quality and reduce the playback concerns.


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george mandl
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 5:19:52 pm

Thanks, Michael.
Do you think the H264 transcoded from ProRes HQ will look acceptable on a screen in a theater with 45 seats?

Best,
George



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Michael Sacci
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 5:36:18 pm

BluRay uses H264 and you can use a high bitrate I think Compressor max's out at 25Mbps. If you movie looks good this should look good.

Smoothness of playback is as important as image quality. This is a compromise, but IMO a very wise one. Of course you need to watch through you encode both for quality and for playability.


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george mandl
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 5:18:31 pm

Thank you, Andy.

The movie was shot on a RED camera, and has been transcoded via RedRocket to the Prores (HQ) codec. When you say ProRes is an FCP codec only, do you mean that FCP must be installed on the system? Or is it possible to just bring along the AppleProResCodec.component and drop that into the Mac Mini Library/Quicktime folder?

I suppose I could bake a ProRes HQ file, and then bake an H264 as a backup, in case the HQ doesn't play nicely.


Much appreciated.
George



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Michael Sacci
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 5:39:06 pm

If you really think you need to use ProRes use reg. ProRes (not HQ) or even LT. 1080p footage off an internal drive is asking for trouble.

Apple gives out the ProRes codec, download it from Apple, the limitation of the free proper codec is that you cannot encode to ProRes but it will play it back.


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Andy George
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 5:40:59 pm

Good to know you can download that player. Learn something everyday.

The h.264 backup sounds like a good plan. Im guessing the h.264 will be roughly 100-150Mbps smaller, so it's a pretty large data rate savings. I think you would be hard pressed to tell the difference.

-Andy George
Senior Editor
http://www.chiselindustries.com


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Rafael Amador
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 5:45:23 pm

You can play Prores with a Mac Mini from an FW400 HD.
Better than H264.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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george mandl
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 5:56:07 pm

Thank you, Rafael.
I checked out your website and am very interested in what you're doing. I recently visited that part of the world and fell in love with it.



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Rafael Amador
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 10:32:23 pm

Hi George,
Great you liked this place. Post me if you want.

From a FW400 with clean directories (DiskWarrior) you read easily 40MB/s, that's 320Mbps. More than enough to play ProresHQ 1080.
To be more safe, try a FW800.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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george mandl
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 5:47:39 pm

This just in.... the Mac Mini has a drive speed of 5400. I'm screwed right?



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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 6:07:37 pm

I wouldn't chance it. Can't you run some tests?


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george mandl
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 6:31:31 pm

I'm trying to get in there for a test. The backup plan is to burn a blu-ray (or even lay off an HDCAM tape) and call it a day. I was trying to go tapeless, but it doesn't seem like that'll work in this case.



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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 6:45:41 pm

Not 1080HQ on a mini. A KiPro would work, though.

Or s really hirez h264 as has been mentioned.


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Do you think my Quicktime will play on this system?
on Oct 27, 2010 at 6:54:41 pm

[george mandl] "Do you think a native Quicktime export of an 80 minute movie will play cleanly on their Mac Mini?"

Why chance it when there are Blu-Ray Players available? If this is a big deal, think about using one.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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