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nina baschi
Need assistance for editing assistance
on Jun 22, 2011 at 7:42:09 am

Hello folks

I am becoming an editor and will be doing my first editing assistance on a cinema project. Since the actual editor is somewhat old school I am left to figure out the workflow.

My main question is whether, if you work with HD material, there should be a conversion for an offline edit, or wether we should work with the original files directly. Also, we will be mixing in DV material - what would be the best way to embed these in an FCP HD project?

Here's what we'll be working with:

Final Cut Pro 7.0.3
Sony F3 Cameras:
HD HQ mode 1920 x 1080 25 p / MPEG2 35 Mbps /VBR
Sound: BWF-files, 48kHz, 24 bit (2-8 monofiles from Aaton Cantar)

We're doing our first tests tomorrow and I'd be extremely grateful to have something to start off with... Offline edit conversion/no conversion? settings in FCP?

Thank you so much!


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Rafael Amador
Re: Need assistance for editing assistance
on Jun 22, 2011 at 9:42:59 am

[nina baschi] "My main question is whether, if you work with HD material, there should be a conversion for an offline edit, or wether we should work with the original files directly. Also, we will be mixing in DV material - what would be the best way to embed these in an FCP HD project?"
Don't waist your time converting. Edit native. Conform the sequence, then change the sequence codec to Prores.
About putting DV stuff on an HD sequence, FC doesn't makes a perfect job on blowing the picture up.
If you are doing this in a regular basic, get a nice card and resize on capturing.
Software solutions will always be very slow,
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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nina baschi
Re: Need assistance for editing assistance
on Jun 22, 2011 at 1:52:25 pm

thanks for the quick answer, rafael! what you're saying implies that my rawfiles should be prores, which I figure they're not coming directly from the camera...

so I'd have to convert them into prores HQ over compressor? the problem is, this camera (sony F3) is pretty new, I've onky worked with EX3 before and it never works directly on final cut. native editing wouldn't really be possible if it needs rendering all the time.

and what do you mean when you say conforming/changing sequence codec, do you mean something more than changing sequence settings?

and for embedding DV you say it's better to resize during import? that a good idea, I didn't even know it could do that! we have a blackmagic card, but how will that work since I get my material on harddiscs?

sorry about all the questions, I'm a lost intern with lots of responsabilities :)
thanks again!


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Rafael Amador
Re: Need assistance for editing assistance
on Jun 22, 2011 at 4:52:08 pm

[nina baschi] "thanks for the quick answer, rafael! what you're saying implies that my rawfiles should be prores, which I figure they're not coming directly from the camera..."
No.
You are working with XDCAM stuff that works great natively. You don't need convert to Prores.


[nina baschi] "so I'd have to convert them into prores HQ over compressor? the problem is, this camera (sony F3) is pretty new, I've onky worked with EX3 before and it never works directly on final cut. native editing wouldn't really be possible if it needs rendering all the time."
The F3 is just the top model of the EX-1/3 serial. Better hardware, but what you get on the SxS cards is EX-1, so same workflow: SONY Transfer tool.
You should have a look to this:
http://library.creativecow.net/ross_shane/tapeless-workflow_fcp-7/1
rafael



[nina baschi] "and what do you mean when you say conforming/changing sequence codec, do you mean something more than changing sequence settings?"
I mean that you open a sequence and when FC asks you "if you want to conform the sequence settings to the footage settings" you hit YES. Then you will be editing "native". The easier way to render any thing.
Converting this stuff is not needed at all, what is convenient is : Once you have your sequence conformed to the footage, change the sequence codec to Prores.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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nina baschi
Re: Need assistance for editing assistance
on Jun 23, 2011 at 9:30:03 am

hey rafael, thanks again and if you're not tired of me yet, I have a few more questions...

I watched the tutorial and am much smarter now.:) in fact, having always worked with tapes I did not even know the import settings on the log and transfer fonction were so important.

now I tried re-importing material from the EX3 directly over the log&transfer tool, and it worked fine (FCP doesn't need to render anymore, yay). what I don't understand now:

- if FCP imports directly from the card and it works, what do I need the XDCAM transfer tool for? so far I've always used it to convert the MP4s into .movs - but then these QTs are the ones that need rendering on FCP! so is XDCAM just to view them outside of FCP..?

- and what if I don't have the cards from the F3, only the copied folder structure on a hard disc, will FCP also recognize that directly and import w/o having to convert with XDCAM first?

- the other things where I would just like to have confirmation on, are the different pre-sets. for an easy setup (still considering I'll also want to import DV material), would I use HDV? and for capture presets would I use HDV prores? ...

- and for import settings within the log and transfer tool, would I use MPEG2SD with target format prores 422?

now feeling a little bad for having to ask you all these questions, maybe we could mention you in the movie's credits ;)
thanks a milliion,
nina


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Rafael Amador
Re: Need assistance for editing assistance
on Jun 23, 2011 at 10:25:12 am

[nina baschi] "- if FCP imports directly from the card and it works, what do I need the XDCAM transfer tool for? so far I've always used it to convert the MP4s into .movs - but then these QTs are the ones that need rendering on FCP! so is XDCAM just to view them outside of FCP..?"

Nina,
I think you have been doing something wrong.
You say "so far I've always used it to convert the MP4s into .movs - but then these QTs are the ones that need rendering on FCP!"
How have you been converting the MP4?

Those MP4 doesn't needs "conversion". They need to be re-wrapped as QT files (for Mac) or MXF (for PC).
And that is what SONY Transfer does. It just changes the "container" but without processing or re-compressing video or audio.
You end up with a fully standard EX/QT file that shouldn't need no rendering when edited in FC.


[nina baschi] "- if FCP imports directly from the card and it works, what do I need the XDCAM transfer tool for? "
The only way FC can "import" from the card is through the Transfer tool (re-wrap to QT/MXF) or through some third part plugin (calibrated), that lets you manage directly the MP4's.



[nina baschi] "- and what if I don't have the cards from the F3, only the copied folder structure on a hard disc, will FCP also recognize that directly and import w/o having to convert with XDCAM first?"
As long as the File/Folder structure is OK, you can always re-import that stuff to FC.
Just put all that inside a new folder, and point the Transfer Tool to that. The transfer Tool will work as would be downloading from the SxS card.
But be VERY, VERY careful. The file/folder structure must be perfect.

[nina baschi] "- the other things where I would just like to have confirmation on, are the different pre-sets. for an easy setup (still considering I'll also want to import DV material), would I use HDV? and for capture presets would I use HDV prores? ... "
Nina, forget about "Easy Setups".
You have the "conform sequence to footage" function in FC.
Drag a clip to a new sequence and let FC set the sequence up to the footage.
Capture DV as DV and HDV as HDV.
If you need to convert any thing to make it work in FC, Prores is the best option.
Things that work directly in FC, do not transcode.
Cheers,
rafael




[nina baschi] "- and for import settings within the log and transfer tool, would I use MPEG2SD with target format prores 422?
"


http://www.nagavideo.com


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nina baschi
Re: Need assistance for editing assistance
on Jun 23, 2011 at 1:52:21 pm

hey Rafael, yes I have been doing many things wrong :/ it's hard when you have to figure out everything yourself.. luckily there's people like you out there to help!

I had a wrong understanding of the XDCAM Transfer Tool, I didn't realize it's plugin function. I was using it as independently from FCP to "convert" MP4s into .movs., which I would then import into FCP (over cmd+i) which is what caused the rendering problems (silly me). so now I go over Import...XDCAM and it works perfectly.

I got a little confused after watching the tutorial. I was convinced then that I needed to import using the Log and Transfer tool on FCP. Now there's all these source formats and target formats to pick and I didn't know which one applied in my case. (none of them seems to) but if I go over the XDCAM plugin I don't have to worry about that, right?

you notice I'm a bit confused with formats.:) I understand now that editing native in this case is certainly the best way to start out... so, the one thing I´m not sure about is, what difference does it make - for the editing - when I change the sequence codec to prores?

does this codec not only apply once I do the final exports?

and: if we decided to edit in prores instead of native (for example because of mixed formats, or effects that would be "too heavy"), at what point and how would we convert to prores then? would we re-import everything over log and transfer tool as prores, or would be export the raw files over compressor... ?

have I said thank you so much yet?:)


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Rafael Amador
Re: Need assistance for editing assistance
on Jun 24, 2011 at 1:38:19 am

[nina baschi] "I had a wrong understanding of the XDCAM Transfer Tool, I didn't realize it's plugin function. I was using it as independently from FCP to "convert" MP4s into .movs., which I would then import into FCP (over cmd+i) which is what caused the rendering problems (silly me). so now I go over Import...XDCAM and it works perfectly."
That's is not wrong.
I do it like that way too, using the Transfer tool without FC.
Both ways have pros and cons.
- going directly you get your QT files identified with the number from camera and that's all. If you want to archive, this is your stuff.
- Going through L&T, you can manage the files name, and add a "Reel Name" to the footage. This will be VERY helpful for Media Managing and whenever you need to "Reconnect Media" (Finding a clip just by the number can be very complicated. In my 3 years shooting with the EX-1, I don't know how many times the same clip number may be repeated by now on my HDs).
Going L&T allows you to archive the QT clips or the BPAV structure. The BPAV folder must be kept INTACT.


[nina baschi] "and: if we decided to edit in prores instead of native (for example because of mixed formats, or effects that would be "too heavy"), at what point and how would we convert to prores then? would we re-import everything over log and transfer tool as prores, or would be export the raw files over compressor... ?"
Native means No transcoding to Prores or any other codec.
You can edit EX native on an EX sequence, or on a Prores sequence. Both ways still native, but.....

[nina baschi] " so, the one thing I´m not sure about is, what difference does it make - for the editing - when I change the sequence codec to prores?"

Any render will be MUCH faster, and you keep the same RT performance. Rendering to any GOP format makes things much slower. Also
- Any process in prores will degrade your picture less than in XDCAM. No point to compare both codecs for post-production
BEFORE EXPORTING your sequence, set "Render all YUV in High Precision". That will force 32b-Floating Point rendering. Don't change it while you edit; will slow your render.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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