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On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock

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Joe Schuck
On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 21, 2011 at 6:09:10 pm

Hey Guys,

I'm working for a place where they want us to start On-Lining our Proxies at the Fine Cut Stage. Problem is, changes are still being made. Shots get moved around and sequences get reassembled.

Is there an easy way to reconnect to the new files I ingested from the previous sequence or do I have to pretty much restart the process of either re-ingesting or matching back by timecode to the source files I took in earlier, or even worse compare both sequences (grueling)

Also, side question. If we're shipping out our fine cuts on a standard def DVD does it make a difference if it's proxy or 422 to begin with? Doesn't it down convert to a standard def signal anyways?


Thank so much for your help.


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Shane Ross
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 21, 2011 at 6:54:16 pm

Don't do this. It will be a pain in the arse to online, and then try to reconnect if they make changes. They might lengthen a shot, or shorten it, and then the one that you brought in at online quality won't relink to that...because the duration is different, or timecode is. Trying to online, on ANY NLE, while they are still cutting is pure folly. It means that a lot of work will be done again, and again...wasteful

IMHO...they need to wait until picture lock. They won't be saving any time, as somethings will remain the same, but others will change, so you'll be redoing a lot of work.

[Joe Schuck] "Also, side question. If we're shipping out our fine cuts on a standard def DVD does it make a difference if it's proxy or 422 to begin with? Doesn't it down convert to a standard def signal anyways?"

FINE cuts...not locked picture...so "for review." Making an SD DVD of the Proxy footage will be fine.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Matt Doe
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 21, 2011 at 7:00:49 pm

I agree with Shane, if you can get them to wait, you'll save yourself boat loads of time.

Ran into a similar situation some time ago, I had started the online and changes came in. It was faster to re-uprez the entire 44 minute show, than it would have to go through and adjust for the changes they made to the "pix locked" offline sequence.

If there are only going to be a few changes, in my case the series I am doing now has lots of stock footage coming and going; I have the offline editor place the new footage on the top most video track. That way I can clearly see when looking at the entire sequence where all the changes/new material is located.



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Joe Schuck
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 21, 2011 at 7:37:08 pm

Awesome, yeah I knew there was easy way to fix this, besides waiting.

As far the dvd goes Shane, will pro res 422 down converted look any different than pro res proxy down converted?

Sorry for the extra detailed question, but I'm sure the reason why we are upresing so early is because of the DVD which is ridiculous. So If I can give them some sort of specific answer, maybe they'll realize how ridiculous this request is.

Thanks!


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Shane Ross
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 21, 2011 at 7:41:30 pm

[Joe Schuck] "As far the dvd goes Shane, will pro res 422 down converted look any different than pro res proxy down converted?"

I would think so, yes. But I don't have first-hand experience with it ProRes Proxy does have some compression to it, and it might be noticeable to a few people. You can do a test with a 1-5 min section and see how that looks. But, if this is the final DVD...what about color correction? That's part of the online.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Joe Schuck
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 21, 2011 at 7:46:10 pm

alright thanks. I'm gonna try to run some tests cause it's a huge time waster and we have 15 episodes to online plus promo material.

The DVDs they are asking for, are just for reviews for Fine Cuts not picture locks so color correction won't happen til after pic lock. That's why if the the difference between codecs isn't as noticeable on a sd dvd then why am I upresing so early in the game?

thanks for all your help shane!


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Shane Ross
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 21, 2011 at 7:58:00 pm

If the DVDs are just for review, then they will be fine. They want to ONLINE just for a review? When ProRes Proxy look great...compared to offline RT or 15:1 (in Avid).

No...if these are for review, ProRes Proxy is fine fine fine.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Mark Raudonis
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 22, 2011 at 3:34:23 am

Joe,

We're feeling a lot of pressure from some networks to deliver an "uprezzed" less than final cut. While I agree this is a PITA, in the end, the customer is always right.

Therefore, this becomes an exercise in how to accomplish this with the least pain. We have experimented with many different workflows, and our current favorite is: uprez the ENTIRE clip of any shot referenced.
When the changes come... and they will come... chances are, the high rez media already exists on the SAN,
making the next pass simply a reconnect. In the event that a change required NEW material, that full length clip must be uprezzed. This has proven to be the most efficient way to handle "less than final" cuts.

Good luck.

Mark



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Joe Schuck
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 22, 2011 at 3:39:37 am

Thanks mark. Unfortunately we have about 30 dvc pro tapes per episode and the production company doesnt have the budget for more san space. I wish.

Thanks anyways!


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Mark Raudonis
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 22, 2011 at 3:17:24 pm

"the production company doesnt have the budget for more san space."

If you point out to them how much time and effort is consumed with your current workflow, they
SHOULD gladly come up with the money. That's assuming they can do math!

Good luck.

Mark



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Matt Doe
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 22, 2011 at 4:25:51 pm

I struggle to see the advantage of uprez'ing the entire clip for each shot, as opposed to just the clip with a few seconds of handles.

You might save time on the backend with changes, if they happen to pull from something that is not contained in your handles. But, having 30 DVCPro tapes to uprez per show, that's easily 10 hours of footage per show just in case things are changed. Multiply that out over the course of a 6-12 episode season, and there goes any time savings and then tack on the cost of having a SAN large enough to store all that excess high rez media.

Your workflow seems like a good idea for short pieces, but on a larger scale, I don't see the advantage. You'll end up spending more time uprez'ing the media, before you could even start your online edit, than you would figuring out where the changes were made.

At that rate, you are better of fighting for enough SAN space to be able to cut the show in HD from the start.



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Mark Raudonis
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 22, 2011 at 7:18:41 pm

"I struggle to see the advantage of uprez'ing the entire clip..."

That's because you're not thinking through all of the possibilities. You're assuming I'm suggesting uprezzing the ENTIRE tape... I'm not. I am only suggesting uprezzing a complete clip (timecode start to stop). That will reduce the amount of time digitized to a more manageable size.

I chuckle at your suggestion that this may only work with "small sized projects". What you don't know is that we are regularly using this method on multiple hour long shows, referencing THOUSANDS of hours of media. Our SAN is BIG (over 300+ TBs) and that's still NOT big enough to go full HD start to finish. Most people who suggest staying at full rez fail to consider the bandwidth required to have a dozen editors pulling 20 streams of multi cam media simultaneously. Even if you have the storage space, the bandwidth requirements will stop you from using the "all HiRez all the time".

In our case,our acquisition format is XDCAM-HD which makes the uprez process a breeze. It's faster than real time, so we pay a very small time penalty for digitizing extra media. In a perfect world, I'd definitely try to stay full rez all the time. But we don't live in a perfect world, and the workflow I've suggested is the best compromise between efficiency and cost that we've been able to devise.

mark



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Matt Doe
Re: On-lining in FCP: Fine Cut to Picture Lock
on Dec 23, 2011 at 4:25:57 am

I suppose I should have phrased my "small sized projects" comment more as a question, my apologies.

We did a large facility upgrade about 2 years ago, at the time I was asked how much storage we should ask for. I (only slightly) jokingly said "ask for a petabyte and work your way down." We ended up with 150TB, and what I'd give to have that extra 150 on top.

We are still primarily a tape based offline/online production company (80/20, tape to file based). As is always the case, everyone always wants their footage ingested in some impossible amount of time. For shows not shooting TOD code, we end up digitizing the entire tape as one long clip usually (DVCPro HD anyway, HDV we do in roughly 10 minute chunks). That's where my objection to digitizing the whole clip came from, as we rarely are given the time to log into clips before we digitize.

For TOD coded tapes, we let FCP do the work and create new clips at each timecode break. Will have to do some tests with our current workflow and see if your method of the whole clip allows for faster changes in the off chance they come in after pix lock; and what amount of time it adds to the uprez process for us.

It's funny that no matter what your workflow is, all it takes is one or two "little changes" from the network to throw it all out the window. Also, how one workflow can seem so familiar and easy, and how another can seem so foreign.

Oh the choices...



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