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Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)

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Robert Taylor
Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)
on Jan 27, 2011 at 8:59:09 pm

Hello,

I'm working in Final Cut Pro and have footage from a Panasonic HPX170 (shot in 1080p/24) and footage from a Canon 5D Mark ii (also shot in 1080p/24). My understanding is that the Canon is 1920x1080 with square pixels whereas the Panasonic is 1280x1080 with rectangular pixels. I'm converting both to ProRes 422 on ingest. My questions: (1) Is ProRes the best way to go given the mixed formats and (2) would it be best for me to set the timeline to 1280x1080 with rectangular pixels (HPX settings) or use 1920x1080 with square pixels (5D settings)? I'm wondering if it's better to down-size the 5D material as opposed to up-rezing the HPX material? Has anyone done this already? Thanks for your help!

Rob


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)
on Jan 27, 2011 at 9:41:09 pm

[Robert Taylor] "(1) Is ProRes the best way to go given the mixed formats"

Absolutely; it's tough to ever go wrong with FCP's go-to codec.





[Robert Taylor] "(2) would it be best for me to set the timeline to 1280x1080 with rectangular pixels (HPX settings) or use 1920x1080 with square pixels (5D settings)?"

Go 1920x1080. The HPX footage will fit nicely on the screen, and FCP will even display it in the proper pixel aspect ratio.

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


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Robert Taylor
Re: Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)
on Jan 27, 2011 at 10:10:59 pm

Dave,

Thanks very much for the prompt reply! That's the way I'll do it. I greatly appreciate the explanation and the professional assistance.

Best,

Rob


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Olin Padilla
Re: Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)
on Jan 28, 2011 at 12:07:13 am

If time is any kind of issue, then you can skip the transcode with the HPX footage (assuming it's DVCProHD).

I have edited DVCProHD on prores timelines on many occasions without any difficulty, quality loss, or need for render.


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Robert Taylor
Re: Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)
on Jan 28, 2011 at 12:21:19 am

Olin,

Thanks for the tip. This actually brings up another question. If one is going to "properly" transcode DVC Pro HD to Pro Res, what is the best way to do it? Do I need to use compressor, or is there a setting on the Log and Transfer preferences I can use. I thought I could do it via log and transfer but as I now look at my options under preferences, the only P2 reference is a "P2 Plugin" with a single option for P2 AVC-Intra. I have a feeling that's not what I'm looking for. Can you help on this question?

Thanks.

Rob T


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Olin Padilla
Re: Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)
on Jan 28, 2011 at 1:43:38 am

As far as I know, you have to log and transfer the P2 footage to have playable DVCProHD footage. Transcoding to ProRes would be a separate and possibly unnecessary step.

I could be wrong about this one though. Dave?


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Robert Taylor
Re: Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)
on Jan 28, 2011 at 1:53:43 am

Maybe I need to transcode after editing. But I'm not sure of the steps. Dave????

Thanks, Olin.

Rob T


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Olin Padilla
Re: Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)
on Jan 28, 2011 at 3:59:29 am

No. No matter what, transcode the 7d footage before editing.

After doing your log and transfer with the HPX footage, right click on a clip and select 'reveal in finder.' It should link to a new standalone video clip (not the original P2 folders). The clips revealed in the finder are your DVCProHD videos, and are what you would potentially transcode using compressor, MPEG Streamclip, etc. I believe this is how it works, I haven't edited P2 footage in a while.

Personally, I would try editing with the HPX footage as is, on a prores timeline. If that seems to cause problems, then you should transcode.

I don't see any reason to waste half a day transcoding perfectly good DVCProHD footage to prores when it's already in an editable state. No matter what, those HPX pixels are going to be converted to square. Why not save yourself the time (and the possibility of generation loss) and do it with the final export.

Either way you're fine.


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Robert Taylor
Re: Best FCP Settings For Mixed Formats (DVCPROHD/H.264)
on Jan 28, 2011 at 5:58:16 am

Olin,

That makes a lot of sense. Thank you! Really appreciate it.

Best,

Rob

Rob T


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