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Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP

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Morten Marthinsen
Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 4:34:25 am

Hey all-
I really need some help on this. I bought the Canon 5D Mark II and filmed some stuff. Then converted the footage to Apple XDcam EX 1080i60 (35MB/s), 1980x1080, 29.97 fps and put it on a Apple Prores 422 HQ, Square Pixel Aspect Ratio, Field Dominance Upper, 29.97 fps sequence in FCP. The RAW or converted footage looks great in quicktime, but in Final Cut it becomes choppy and it flickers. Especially when i pan (the footage pans). Its not like its crazy bad, but your eye struggles to look at it for a long time, and the footage (the quality, crispiness) looks far from how it should be. Any suggestions or tips on this is greatly appreciated.


Thanks
Morten


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Shane Ross
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 5:56:10 am

You did the wrong thing. Don't convert to XDCAM...convert to ProRes.

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


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Colin McQuillan
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 6:31:14 am

[Morten Marthinsen] "converted the footage to Apple XDcam EX 1080i60 (35MB/s)"

convert straight to prores - no reason for xdcam. If you are using FCP7 download the eos plugin from Canon and use the Log and Transfer function to capture the footage from the cards or wherever you stored the files from the cards. Within the L&T interface window you can select which flavour of ProRes you want the footage converted to.

Colin McQuillan
Vancouver, B.C.



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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 2:54:38 pm

Hey
Thanks for the reply.
I convert it to xdcam because Apple Prores are usually much larger in size and xdcam basically gives you the same quality but less size.
I have been working on a show for Animal planet the last year where we did exactly the same thing and it worked fine. It should work fine, there is no reason why it should flicker.. Any other suggestions?
I will try and log and transfer the footage since i do have that plugin..

Thanks :)


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 4:51:41 pm

[Morten Marthinsen] "I convert it to xdcam because Apple Prores are usually much larger in size and xdcam basically gives you the same quality but less size."

They are two completely different critters Morten. XDCam may appear to your naked eyeballs to be of similar quality, but you would not say that if compared the two codecs scientifically. ProRes is a superior "hi-performance" codec. Among other things, it retains vastly more color information, and holds up much better through successive generations than XDCam, which is really a highly compressed acquisition format.

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

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Bringing "The Whale" to the Big Screen:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-2-MikeParfit...

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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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 4:57:41 pm

That is probably true, you seem to know much more than me on this, but it doesnt answer why the footage is flickering (stuttering) in FCP.
Do you have any idea why this happens?

Thanks


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 5:18:26 pm

[Morten Marthinsen] "you seem to know much more than me on this, but it doesnt answer why the footage is flickering (stuttering) in FCP.
Do you have any idea why this happens?"


Sure! Sorry I didn't see the original question and answer earlier. Your camera shoots progressive frames, yet you have transcoded the files to various interlaced formats.

You wrote: I bought the Canon 5D Mark II and filmed some stuff. Then converted the footage to Apple XDcam EX 1080i60 (35MB/s), 1980x1080, 29.97 fps and put it on a Apple Prores 422 HQ, Square Pixel Aspect Ratio, Field Dominance Upper, 29.97 fps sequence in FCP.

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

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Bringing "The Whale" to the Big Screen:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-2-MikeParfit...

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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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 5:37:15 pm

Ok. So how should i go by fixing this problem? Obviously my footage cant be changed, so what settings should I convert it to so it will look better?

Thank you so much for your help


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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 5:42:41 pm

Ok. So how should i go by fixing this problem? Obviously my footage cant be changed, so what settings should I convert it to so it will look better?


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 5:57:35 pm

You need to transcode the original fmo your 5D to ProRes with "none" selected as the field dominance.

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

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Bringing "The Whale" to the Big Screen:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-2-MikeParfit...

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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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 6:13:55 pm

I did do this and it still looks bad. In the FCP sequence i change from upper (odd) or none in the field dominance and it looks bad either way.
I have tried it on 2 different macbook pro┬┤s and both looks the same.


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Chris Tompkins
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 6:17:43 pm

Use the Canon plugin as suggested.
Return to the original card media, L&T the material in. Use Prores.
It will come in AS SHOT. Progressive.

Drop a clip onto a new, blank Sequence and let FCP match it for you.

Chris Tompkins
Video Atlanta LLC


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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 6:21:41 pm

I have done it like this but still looks the same.
Starting to wonder if its my canon that messes up the footage but hard to believe.
I shoot in 29.97 fps


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Chris Tompkins
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 6:26:54 pm

Have you watched Shane's "Tapeless Workflow" tutorial here on the cow?

Chris Tompkins
Video Atlanta LLC


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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 6:27:42 pm

No i havent. you have a link for it?
Thanks


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Shane Ross
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 7:03:23 pm

Tapeless Workflow for FCP 7 Tutorial

The converted footage you have now is a problem. Don't use it. Toss it. RE-TRANSFER to ProRes, or if you insist on XDCAM (still horrid idea), then use a non-interlaced option.

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


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Colin McQuillan
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 6:41:27 pm

Where is your media stored/playing back from?

Colin McQuillan
Vancouver, B.C.



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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 6:42:46 pm

Either locally or on a 500GB drive..


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Colin McQuillan
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 7:21:15 pm

Internal laptop drive? could be your issue there.. You should have your ProRes footage on an external FW800 or eSata drive.

Colin McQuillan
Vancouver, B.C.



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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 7:47:17 pm

It might be a problem, but i have seen the issue with flickering footage when having footage on an external drive and this is not like that.
You mainly see it when you pan..Your eye tires watching it..


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 7:55:53 pm

If you have taken the advice above (follow Shane's Tapeless Workflow tutorial, media on at least a FW800 external drive, etc.) and you STILL see it, you could be seeing judder, a phenomenon that's a function of frame rate & horizontal motion... like a pan.

Be glad you didn't shoot at 24p. Judder gets worse as the frame rate drops.
The fix: change the speed of the pan during shooting.

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


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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 8:01:40 pm

Thanks for the suggestion but the pan is minimal.. its not fast at all..


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Michael Gissing
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 30, 2011 at 11:36:29 pm

The other issue is that the 5D does line skipping in crunching 4.5k pixel res in the chip to 1920 x 1080 and H264. This line skipping can cause issues on fine lines and any movement including slow pans.

It is a major limitation of DSLRs. Some judicious use of gaussian blur sometimes helps. Philip Bloom, well known exponent of DSLRs ,reported that a new 70-200 lens caused him more problems than his old lens so it is related to raw resolution. There have been some fixes like an optical block that goes behind the lens and does some fine diffusion but the penalty is that is softens the image. Importantly, you can't see it on the LCD screen.


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Matt Lyon
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 31, 2011 at 2:41:47 pm

The original poster also didn't mention how he is monitoring his footage.

Morten, I would add that you can't really judge motion artifacts in the FCP viewer, or even the full screen "Digital Cinema Desktop Preview" mode. (If that is how you are monitoring your footage).

To my eyes, the only way to really judge flicker/judder/stutter/whatever is on a properly set up broadcast monitor via a breakout box.

Matt Lyon
Editor
Toronto


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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Dec 31, 2011 at 4:07:26 pm

I am viewing it either in the FCP viewer or "Digital Cinema Desktop Preview" mode... But i have been working as an editor for many years now and have never seen this issue before.. If i see it in the FCP viewer i will see it on a broadcast monitor.

Thanks for your reply


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s regian
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Jan 2, 2012 at 4:15:30 pm

Just a wild guess here: any chance your viewer is set to an odd percentage (fit to window)... instead of 100%, 50%, 25%.?


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Morten Marthinsen
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Jan 2, 2012 at 8:50:51 pm

No...

Thanks


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Matt Lyon
Re: Converted 5D footage flickers in FCP
on Jan 2, 2012 at 6:32:27 pm

Fair enough, but you said it yourself that you are using a new camera. There's a lot of variables at play. FCP and quicktime don't necessarily play footage back exactly the same. I would want to watch the original, uncoverted footage on a broadcast monitor, and then the "fixed" FCP footage on the same screen, in order to make sure the entire pipeline is sound.

Matt Lyon
Editor
Toronto


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