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Best workflow with lossy source files?

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Matthew Belinkie
Best workflow with lossy source files?
on Mar 2, 2012 at 3:43:45 pm

Guys -

I may be doing a little project that involves editing footage from the Academy Awards (strictly for fun, not for profit). I downloaded a 720p recording of it. This recording is, of course, pretty heavily compressed (about 2 gigs for the whole telecast).

I need to convert my clips using MPEG streamclip, before bringing them into FCP. My question is, can I use ProRes LT, since that will be a much higher bitrate then that source? Or do I still want to use regular ProRes, because I don't want my quality to degrade further?

To put it another way: when choosing a mezzanine format, does it matter what the source was? Or will ProRes always give better results then ProRes LT, even if they both contain WAY more data than the original? Delivery will be via the web, so everything will get compressed pretty heavily at the end of the day anyway.


- Matt

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Jerry Hofmann
Re: Best workflow with lossy source files?
on Mar 2, 2012 at 5:53:01 pm

LT is probably enough for a show like that, not much movement in the frames... if it looks worse, go up, but if it doesn't...


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Andrew Kimery
Re: Best workflow with lossy source files?
on Mar 3, 2012 at 6:37:19 am

Although I agree w/Jerry, why not transcode a sample into each format and see for yourself? Heck, you could easily transcode a sample in to 4 or 5 different popular codecs, compare them and get first hand knowledge of how the different compression schemes impact the footage.

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Matthew Belinkie
Re: Best workflow with lossy source files?
on Mar 5, 2012 at 2:29:43 am

Honestly, I can't tell the difference between ProRes and ProRes LT, even when there's a decent amount of motion. But even if the footage LOOKS fine, I've heard that ProRes LT will start to degrade quickly when you add effects to it and compress it for the web. I just wanted to get some opinions from people who have done this more.

I'll probably use ProRes, because better safe than sorry.

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