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What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?

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Adrian Smith
What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 25, 2011 at 7:38:37 pm

Hello all:

So forgive if this seems basic but it's been a while since I needed to deal with projection (and that was from Betacam SP).

So here is the scenario. I have produced a video from HDV source. I brought it into FCP as ProRes 422. Edited, added bells and whistles, etc. The video features quite a lot of moves on still images. But nothing too far from the usual. It is in 16:9

The video will be played back from a Mac PowerBook Pro laptop.

The video is to be projected at different events sometimes in HD but usually in SD (depending on what the particular venue has to offer).

Can someone recommend the best codec/setting for showing SD on a 4:3 screen in 500 seat auditorium (that will be the first screening). The video is in the 16:9 aspect ration so I presume will be letter boxed on a 4:3 screen. As stated - the video will playback from a laptop.

I will value all responses.

Many thanks.

Adrian S


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David Roth Weiss
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 25, 2011 at 8:28:40 pm

More impotent than the codec would be the connection from your MBP to the projector. Since you have not mentioned having an I/O device, how do you intend to output a true video signal to the projector? Keep in mind, in most big theaters projectors are not computer monitors.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Producing Episodic TV with "24" Producer Michael Klick:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-1_Michael-Kl...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 25, 2011 at 8:40:05 pm

As I mentioned it will not be one but many different locations so it is impossible to say what any one connection will be. This is being produced for a client who will go from event to event. The video file will play back from different computers (usually a MacBook Pro). I have no control over what the computer will be or what the connection is (not clairvoyant - though I hear there is an app for that).

What I need to figure out is the best codec/ video format to give the client so they will have their bases covered. The client is not a techie but a marketing person and will not want umpteen different variations (SD and HD will have to suffice)

So I am presuming some version of an h264 QT file. I have also heard that playback in the ProRes format is also not bad (depending on the power/set-up for the lap top).

So given that the average scenario is a standard projector of decent power and quality projecting onto a 4:3 screen in a 500 seat venue can someone suggest some good settings/codec from a proRes source.

I'm sure there are other producers/editor who have clients with the same needs/issues (yes, I know, they all have issues).

Thanks

A.S.


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Steve Eisen
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 1:01:45 am

Listen to David. The output from any computer MacBook Pro or Mac Pro is a "Computer signal" not video. They are different. As with each computer and projector, they each have their limitations.

My latest MacBook Pro can output between 1280 x 960 up to 1920 x 1080. Not all laptops are the same

I own a couple of projectors that can accept and output 1920 x 1080. Not all projectors are the same.

I would keep it simple and create an SD DVD and play back from a dvd player via component or hdmi. Do not change your aspect ratio. This way you are sending a video signal to the projector. Video signal will look better than computer signal.

Steve Eisen
Eisen Video Productions
Vice President
Chicago Final Cut Pro Users Group


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David Roth Weiss
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 1:49:18 am

[Steve Eisen] "Listen to David."

Listen to Steve and myself.

Evidently Adrian you did not understand that I was asking you about the connection to the projection for a good reason, i.e. other than to test your psychic abilities. And, it is your job to know precisely how your film will be projected. If you want the audience to see it as you intended, you have got to determine these things in advance, by asking the right questions. Every other film and video maker does.

As Steve mentioned, a video signal and the output of a computer graphics card are not one and the same. So, as I mentioned earlier, picking the proper codec is not as important as knowing what the proper playback device/connection will be for the projector.

And, I also agree with Steve in that I would also choose to go with a SD DVD.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Producing Episodic TV with "24" Producer Michael Klick:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-1_Michael-Kl...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 2:14:37 am

Are you both nuts? That is the most unprofessional reply I have ever heard.

How can I know what connections will be made when it will be shown around the world in different venues? Also my client has requested that it play from a desktop. It's funny Electronic Arts recently requested from the same thing for a recent presentation (though you would for sure say they were wrong and should stick to VHS).

The reason for preferring the desktop is on the grounds that you get much better resolution from playing from the hard drive and can have a bigger file size. Also DVD playback is notoriously unstable. True though, AV techs sometimes ask for one as a back up.

So if you can't answer the very simple original question of what is the best format...(and I am learning from the Apple forum that ProRes 422 with suitable QT player installed is the way to go) then please don't chime in with erroneous, irrelevant and misleading information.

It is both insulting and demeaning. I am in contact with the techs for the launch presentation which will be in hi-def. But do you really think it is an editors job to know every single venue the video will be played in over the next five years and have nice chats re. the projector connections with each one. Hmm, Not sure that's in the budget, old chaps.

Ye Gods!

Pull yourselves together and pay attention to what's being asked and not turning it to a "well you can't get there form here" scenario.

Sorry for the rant - but bloody hell!


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John Pale
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 3:16:28 am







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David Roth Weiss
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 7:33:56 pm

[Adrian Smith] "if you can't answer the very simple original question of what is the best format...(and I am learning from the Apple forum that ProRes 422 with suitable QT player installed is the way to go) then please don't chime in with erroneous, irrelevant and misleading information."

Clearly, this matter is more complicated than you know, otherwise you'd be thankful that Steve and I attempted to give you the proper advice.

Good luck!

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Producing Episodic TV with "24" Producer Michael Klick:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-1_Michael-Kl...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 7:57:49 pm

Oh you silly person. It's not that complicated at all. It just requires a certain combination of actions to make it happen.

The combination is:

1) A good video (no point bothering otherwise)
2) The video in the correct format to be projected
3) Knowledge of where it will be projected and how (laptop as per client request)
4) A skilled AV crew to make sure all connections are in place and video projects at its best.

So there are different people and skill sets in the loop. The producer will tie that all together in conjunction with the client (presuming there is budget). I am not the producer. I am but the humble editor.

Now my job as the editor is thus: I am tasked with making the video work from a creative and thematic viewpoint. Now, as there is not the budget to hand the master video file to a video engineer (as say Thelma Schoonmaker might at the end of the editing process with Martin Scorsese - would you have Thelma checking the projector connections too?) I am making the projection format myself.

So before I involve the other people and technologies in the chain I simply want to know the best format to put the video into using Compressor. There are many variables. I was simply asking advice as for the best one (best practices as they say).

DVD is not an option as the client has expressly said they want to project from a laptop (too many bad experiences with messed up DVDs).

So to sum up - it's not complicated it just requires good communication and answering the question that is asked - and not going off on a tangent.

Meanwhile the problem is solved, Good advise from FCP user group and Electronic Arts.

Not so great from you - but I have enjoyed the argument immensely.

So thanks for that!


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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 8:18:34 pm

And for other members of the forum who might have the same question - here is what i have found to be the best options:

Play Back Pro (Plus) - Standard Definition Video Playback
Supported QuickTime Codecs

Apple ProRes 422 (HQ) (ideal codec)
H.264
QuickTime "None" uncompressed codec
Blackmagic uncompressed 8bit and 10bit
AV Concepts Playback Pro systems are designed for standard definition video playback only. Contents of the system are:

Mac Pro Laptop, 17"
2.6GHz Intel Core Duo Processor
4GB 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM
G-Drive 1T Hard Drive
1x 3Gbit, eSATA
2x FireWire 800 (9-pin)
1x USB2.0
Matrox MXO Output monitoring/scan converter
Tape ingest through:
Maxtro MXO-2
or
AJA IOla

Make the sure the Playback Pro app is installed:

PlaybackPro is a fully modern Macintosh application that takes advantage of advances in software stability and graphics capabilities. Using one output as the operator interface, it sends clean video to the secondary video output, utilizing the graphics card for hardware acceleration with complete control over size, aspect ratio, and levels.

There - now that wasn't hard was it.


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Greg Ball
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 8:34:38 pm

Wow! My question is why bother asking if you already had the answer? On top of that, you had several folks here trying to HELP you. Why all the rudeness? Are you the same way with your clients? There are many ways to behave when you're not getting the info you need.

Good luck on your show. More luck to your clients.



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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 8:43:49 pm

I was not being deliberately rude - my attitude was born out of frustration that you would not answer the question asked. You insisted on flying off at an irrelevant tangent (which is frustrating when you know the answer does not lie in that direction).

I found the answer from another FCP user group (the one on Apple) where many people deal with the same situation. I found this after I had posted on Creative Cow (and the subsequent flight over the moon).

Why could you not just provide the information asked for - or if you didn't know (and there's no reason why you should) not chime in at all.

I do appreciate you are trying to help but wrong information ain't the way to go.

Don't mean to be rude - just frustrated.

A


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Greg Ball
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 11:22:11 pm

There you go again... now you're saying "you" in answering my comment. Did i offer a solution? NO!!!!
So why are you blaming me? Everyone here was trying to help you. That's what these forums are all about.
If you don't like these forums I suggest that you hire someone to help you.



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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 26, 2011 at 11:39:25 pm

Well, duh, I wouldn't be blaming you if you didn't chime in. And if you didn't have a solution then why in the name of all that is holy engage?

I am grateful though as, good grief, a chap on the horns of deadline needs a good punching bag!

Anyway, now that we have all calmed down - you must appreciate that many of us are on tight deadlines when we reach out for a solution and it gets horribly frustrating when one doesn't get a direct answer or someone attempts to give you s sermon about something quite unconnected (pardon the pun - see thread).

I know many people are trying to help but sometimes the best way to help is not to engage if you don't have an answer or a resource. Particularly if the question relates to something that is not your area of expertise (as this subject evidently wasn't).

As it turned out I got the right information from the exactly the same question from he Apple forum without all the hand wringing and "you can't get there from here" scenarios.

Can we all get on with our lives again now - pretty please?

Sigh

Onwards.


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David Roth Weiss
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 27, 2011 at 12:56:31 am

[Greg Ball] "Everyone here was trying to help you. That's what these forums are all about.
If you don't like these forums I suggest that you hire someone to help you."


Thanks for your support Greg. We'll just have to forgive this guy's rudeness, because, unlike you, Steve, and myself, and every single other person in the industry, this guy is on a tight deadline. :)

Plus, he clearly has no idea what we we're trying to tell him anyway. He'll crash and burn all on his own and it'll hopefully be a good learning experience for him.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Producing Episodic TV with "24" Producer Michael Klick:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-1_Michael-Kl...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Greg Ball
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 27, 2011 at 1:05:10 am

no problem David. The guy is an editor?! I'd love to be a fly on the wall in an edit suite, where he deals with a difficult client. FWIW you handled him well. Kudos to you.



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David Roth Weiss
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 27, 2011 at 2:11:25 am

Thank you Greg! I was just trying to help him, but you can only lead a horse to water...

BTW, in reference to your other post, I too have found it's virtually impossible to create a good looking WMV any more from FCS. I've raised the bitrate to extraordinary levels at times (8000 mbps) and still gotten ugly video. I suspect it's a Flip4mac thing. Many have suggested using Sorenson Squeeze, but I haven't found that my needs justifiy that expense.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Producing Episodic TV with "24" Producer Michael Klick:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-1_Michael-Kl...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Greg Ball
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 27, 2011 at 4:01:58 am

I've tried sorenson squeeze. Not much better. I'm just tryng to get a 4 minute video down to less that 100MB.
The larger version is about 280 mbs.



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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 27, 2011 at 4:19:38 am

Yes I've thought about Sorenson Squeeze (not sure I have a current copy though).

From what I've gathered so far the best way to go is H.264 at a bit rate of around 8000. Using Compressor from a ProRes source.

I'm told setting the the frame size is not so important as long as it is set for some equation of 16:9 (the projector will zoom and focus the image according to screen size, etc.)

There is an app on the market called PlaybackPro which is created just for the playback projection of standard video files It's about $399. The AV people I am working with recommend it for playback from laptops.

PlayBackPro
http://dtvideolabs.com/PlaybackPro.html

I also got these video file specs from the AV company )H.264, ProRes, etc.):

Video Specs
http://www.avconcepts.com/resources/video-playback

My files are looking good and doing a test projection at end of week.

Hope this helps and I'd be interested to hear about the results you get from Sorenson.

Best -

A.S


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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 27, 2011 at 4:56:39 am

And this just in from another editor. This sounds very good and I will experiment with this too. Interesting that a lower bit rate is suggested:

Create a FCP timeline at the correct frame rate (23.98), with square pixels in H.264 format and "Custom" size of 1024x768.
Drop your beautiful HD timeline onto this timeline (respond "bugger off" if FCP asks you about some size rubbish)
FCP will letterbox it for you
Simply send your 1024x768 timeline to Compressor
Choose "Native compressor size" (the default). In the "Video" tab, choose H.264 and limit the data rate to about 3,000.
Audio is whatever it defaults to.
When you say the appropriate b'rucha and wait about five minutes...or maybe 13 hours...the result will be a quicktime file.
Simply load it into Quicktime player (any recent quicktime version) and make it full-screen.
If the Mac is plugged into an XGA projector, make sure the Mac senses the screen resolution and switches to that size.


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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 27, 2011 at 1:53:45 am

Darlings... can well all just stop now before we all crash and burn (far too much money to be made for us to be doing that).

So after three... read 1, 2, 3 STOP

Peace 'n' love y'all!


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Mattijs Bosveld
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 28, 2011 at 9:25:59 am

Adrian,

But even if you are only looking for export settings or codecs, even then the output is a significant point.
The computers that are used might use different i/o's. When it puts out a video signal your export should be different from when you i.e. use a vga output and effictively only make a dual screen setup from which you play the video.
Think about interlaced and progressive video and that kind of stuff...
It might all come together despite these things, but i'm sure that you want the best result and then these things matter.

So it is quite important to know how the computer will send out the signal.
And if you ask such a question here and you get an answer from someone, it might be wise to consider these questions and take it with you when producing and exporting.

The shere fact that you have to ask your question shows that you are not 100% expert in these matters....
The wise thing to do then is to listen to people here, even if the answer is not as straight forward as you hoped.


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Adrian Smith
Re: What is best setting for SD video to ne projected in large hall (from ProRes master)?
on Sep 28, 2011 at 3:40:00 pm

I have the answer now and thankfully a really good AV team to take care of connections, etc.

A whole other debate is currently raging over S-video versus VGA (VGA is winning)

The format consensus seems to be H.264 at 3000 bit and in suitably letter boxed format - for the 4:3 screen)

I'm certainly not an expert on projectors (or projecting from a laptop in a large auditorium) otherwise as you rightly say I would not ask the question. Fortunately there are forums to ask such questions in.

Having found some good solutions and workarounds I am happy to share them.

The headache here was getting it into an video file format that keep the integrity of 16:9 on a 4:3 screen without having to rely too heavily on the projector for re-sizing.

We tested yesterday in a similar size space to the The Times Center (in NY where the video will first screen) and all looks good.

Thanks for your advice - and a good fight.

We got there in the end. Kudos for toughing it out and keeping your side of the street clean.

Warmest regards

A.S. (off deadline and with a really cool video ready to go)


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