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FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please

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Jona Taylor
FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 5, 2012 at 6:04:15 am

Hello Folks,

I could really use a hand here. I don't have anyone who can help get me started in the right way.
I've been shooting a doc in India for the past 4 years and now I'm back in the West and am moving towards the edit. I don't have anyone who can guide me on the best way to help me get started here. So few people have any time anymore.

Editing Gear:
Macbook Pro (2008)
OSX 10.5.8 (Leopard)
SATA 5 bay drive enclosure
FCP 7.0

Camera:
Sony PMWEX1 1080 24p 35mbs + 720 60p
Canon 5DM2 1080 24p
Canon HV30 1080i

I've never worked with mixed camera codecs on the same timeline and would like to know what timeline sequence settings to build this year long edit on.

60% of the material is XDCam 1080 24p
30% of the material is 5DM2 1080 24p (H.264)
8% of the material is XDCam 720 60p
2% of the material is Canon HV30 = 1440 x 1080i60 ?????????????????

Can someone recommend a FCP timeline setting that will be the best one to use?
Prores 422 HQ?
Prores 422 Lt?
XDCam 1920 x 1080p

As I understand it, I should transcode the 5DM2 H264 material into something more FCP friendly codec before bringing it into FCP. Based on the info above - 5DM2 footage is 30% of the total material - should I transcode this material into XDCam which is 60% of total material OR would you transcode it to Prores (which Prores? HQ? Lt?) And, what would you use to transcode this footage... 5DtoRGB? MEG Streamclip? Compressor? And what about the HV30 material, how should I handle that?

An editor told me that a XDCam timeline can be problematic (never articulated why) and that another FCP compressor (Prores?) would be better suited. Thoughts?

I should mention that I would be happy to come a way with a film that can be seen at festivals.

Please, can someone articulate an easy approach to handling this? I'd really be grateful :)

Jona


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Rafael Amador
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 5, 2012 at 6:11:23 am

[Jona Taylor] "5DM2 footage is 30% of the total material - should I transcode this material into XDCam which is 60% of total material OR would you transcode it to Prores (which Prores? "
Transcode to Prores 422 (no HQ, no LT).
Edit on a Prores p24 sequence. The XDCAM stuff will work well on the sequence (before exporting don't forget to set "Render all in High Precision".
The Canon HV30 should be de-interlaced and retimed to p24 in Compressor.
THe same with the 720p60 stuff. Upscaled and retimed in Compressor.
Always to Prores.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Jona Taylor
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 5, 2012 at 6:21:04 am

Rafael! Huge thanks :)

Understood.

But what about the 5DM2 material? I guess you are saying that it should be transcoded to Prores. Correct?And what would you use to transcode the material Compressor? 5DtoRGB? MPEG Streamclip? I've done as much research as I can but need a real world opinion please.

Also, 24p timeline or 23.98? I know I said festival delivery but I can't really say that it will be projected on film.

Thank you so much for setting the record straight :)

Jona


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Shane Ross
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 5, 2012 at 8:22:03 am

For tapeless media, including Canon 5D, use this method:

http://library.creativecow.net/ross_shane/tapeless-workflow_fcp-7/1

[Jona Taylor] "Also, 24p timeline or 23.98?"

24p is 23.98. Unless you are talking film out...on film...it's 23.98. And film distribution is very rare, even at festivals.

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


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Rafael Amador
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 5, 2012 at 9:49:16 am

Fallow Shane's advice.
All Prores 422 23,98.
5Dto RGB makes very good conversion, but is very slow.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Jona Taylor
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 6, 2012 at 8:39:47 pm

Hi Shane and thanks for the insights and clarification.

I watched the tapeless workflow and have a question. Is it really necessary to use FCP's log and transfer tool? I'm thinking it is easier to just drag the folders (containing the camera files) into FCP's browser window. Would that not work faster?

Looking forward!


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Shane Ross
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 6, 2012 at 8:44:43 pm

Jona, you need to convert the footage to an editing codec FCP works with. FCP doesn't deal with any of that footage natively. If that is what you want...just to drag and drop camera masters and begin editing, then you need to switch to Adobe Premiere Pro. FCP doesn't do that. You must convert to ProRes.

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


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Jona Taylor
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 6, 2012 at 9:04:55 pm

Thanks Shane. I guess I have to be more clear.

I have the following foootage:

XDCam 1080 24p / 720 60p
Canon 5DM2 1080 24p
Canon HV30 108060i

I can easily set up a XDCam timeline in FCP and edit XDCam footage without rendering. I've been doing this for 4 years now. My problem has now come when adding the other formats to this timeline.

I know that the XDcam 720 60p, 5DM2 and Canon footage has to be transcoded (or rendered) in order to play when mixed into the XDcam 1080 24p timeline.

My question in all this was what codec would be best to work in when 60% of this project was shot in XDCam 1080 24p? Rafael has said to work in a Prores timeline.

I know that I will have to transcode the 5DM2 and HV30 footage using Compressor, MpegStreamclip or 5DtoRGB, but once that footage is transcoded and sitting in a folder then is it not possible to just drag the folder into FCP's browser window without having to use FCP's Log and Transfer Tool? In other words, why should I use the Log and Transfer tool when I can just drag a folder into FCP's browser window?

I'm trying to be understood here and using the best English in the most articulate way. I would appreciate the same otherwise (and my experience has been) that everything takes way longer to understand. And who would want that?

Looking forward,
Jona


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Shane Ross
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 6, 2012 at 11:59:38 pm

[Jona Taylor] "Rafael has said to work in a Prores timeline."

Rafael is right.

[Jona Taylor] "I know that I will have to transcode the 5DM2 and HV30 footage using Compressor, MpegStreamclip or 5DtoRGB,"

No, you don't. The Canon 5D footage will come in via Log and Transfer when you install the EOS Log and transfer plugin (google it), and the HDV footage can be CAPTURED as ProRes:

http://library.creativecow.net/articles/poisson_chris/hdv-prores.php
Yes, it will be of different dimensions, 1440x1080 and not 1920x1080, and you will get a green render bar, but that is fine.

[Jona Taylor] "but once that footage is transcoded and sitting in a folder then is it not possible to just drag the folder into FCP's browser window without having to use FCP's Log and Transfer Tool?"

Well, yes, once it is ProRes, you don't need log and transfer. But the above methods are better for getting the footage converted to ProRes.

[Jona Taylor] "In other words, why should I use the Log and Transfer tool when I can just drag a folder into FCP's browser window?"

You use Log and Transfer with the RAW footage...the 5D stuff. You use Log and Capture with the HDV footage...if it is already captured as HDV, then use the Media Manager to RECOMPRESS as ProRes.

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


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Jona Taylor
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 7, 2012 at 6:22:10 am

Hey Shane, big thanks for chiming in again and I really appreciate your point by point explanation. Thank you!

"You use Log and Transfer with the RAW footage...the 5D stuff. You use Log and Capture with the HDV footage...if it is already captured as HDV, then use the Media Manager to RECOMPRESS as ProRes."

Unfortunately I've already captured the HV30 stuff as HDV. Will there be an noticeable loss or artifacts if I were to recompresed into Prores footage? I'd really like to keep the quality however small the difference. Thoughts?

Also Shane, there is a small amount of the XDCam footage that was mistakenly recorded as 1080 29.98p. My timeline is 23.98. Should I use Compressor to transcode this to 23.98 before bringing it into FCP? I understand that the footage will run slower. which should be fine. What if I bring this footage in using the Log and Transfer tool, will FCP convert it 23.98 during that process?

Really appreciate your time and support here :)

Jona


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Jona Taylor
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 7, 2012 at 9:44:52 am

Shane, Rafeal... anyone?

With the issues in transcoding and workflow with these multiple formats, and stepping into a huge long edit process, I'm wondering if would anyone recommend me to switch to Premier Pro CS6?

I ask because although I've been using FCP since 2002 and can make my way along doing the basics (I've cut 6 documentary shorts and a 1 hour) I never really learned to use FCP to it's full potential. Just basic cutting with simple transitions, color correction and sound adjustments. Moreover, I've been hearing really good things about CS6. In short, I'm a pro DP living out of a backpack in multiple countries and shooting/ cutting my own projects when not shooting for others. With what I've been hearing/ feeling about Apples move away from the professional market, including their FCPX change, I'm wondering if it would be better to get on board with software that some feel is being better supported by its maker. I know this question will have a lot to do with me and how I can adjust, but I'd be interested to hear your thoughts.

http://philipbloom.net/2012/09/30/cs6/

Greatly appreciated as always :)

Jona


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Jona Taylor
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 8, 2012 at 3:33:58 am

Thanks folks, it was helpful while it lasted :)


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Rafael Amador
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 8, 2012 at 4:25:13 am

[Jona Taylor] "Unfortunately I've already captured the HV30 stuff as HDV"
No problem to keep it as HDV, works OK on a Prores sequence, however you have to deal with the time base change (29,97 > 23,98) so do that in Compressor exporting to Prores.



[Jona Taylor] "here is a small amount of the XDCam footage that was mistakenly recorded as 1080 29.98p. My timeline is 23.98. Should I use Compressor to transcode this to 23.98 before bringing it into FCP? I understand that the footage will run slower."
Do that in Compressor too. THE FOOTAGE WON"T RUN SLOWER (that happens when you conform).
You have to set Compressor (Frame Control ON) "Rate Conversion: Fast" and "Set duration 100% of the Source". Compressor will drop the necessary frames to reduce the time base.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Jona Taylor
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 8, 2012 at 4:29:45 am

Rafael!
Will follow your directions.
Huge thanks again. Really!
Jona


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Yasha Shantha
Re: FCP Mixed Formats - Same Timeline - Insight Please
on Dec 29, 2012 at 6:30:37 pm

I am also having a similar problem. I am using footage from 2 different cameras, a Canon 7D and a Sony EX3.

When I drag and drop the canon files into my timeline, i don't have to render anything. But when I drag the Sony files into the timeline, the red render bar appears on top.

So would this mean that I have to convert the sony files into ProRes? And if so, can that be done through media manager?


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