I'm looking for a workflow H264 to proxy to 444. Basically I want to convert H264 (from dslr) into APR Proxy, then finishing the documentary in APR 444: is it possible to convert from H264 to 444 only the clips I have edited in proxy? Is there a workflow that I can follow? I only know it exists if your raw footage is AVCHD (using media manager+log and transfer) but I don't know a way to manage H264.
Just because the name sounds more impressive, and has a higher data rate, doesn't mean it's the appropriate choice for your footage. ProRes 444 is not what you want to finish on...it's way overkill, and won't offer any benefit at all over ProRes 422, or even HQ. None.
ProRes 444 is for camera formats that shoot 10-bit or higher...like RED, ALexa, and so on. It is also for the times you need an embedded alpha, but not the ANIMATION file sizes.
DSLRs shoot 8-bit video. They will benefit by converting to ProRes 422...HQ if you want to sound important, but really, it offers nothing quality wise over 422 in all honesty. I only go HQ when a client/network wants an HQ final file.
So stick with APR 422 or HQ.
And this is the offline/online workflow, and it ONLY works if you use Log and Transfer to bring in the footage initially. That's how FCP tracks things:
If you convert the footage to APR Proxy by any other method: Grinder, Compressor, MPEG STREAMCLIP...this workflow will not work...and you'll have to basically convert ALL of your footage to full res and try to relink (which will be an issue due to timecode not passing through to the clips with those other methods). Or, you use something like 5GtoRGB to convert all the footage to APR HQ...then import that into FCP...media manage to PRoxy...work, and they relink to the masters. But really, if you convert all the footage to HQ, why not work full res?
WIth FCP 7, the ONLY way to do the offline/online tapeless workflow is via Log and Transfer. FCX offers better solutions, by importing the camera originals, it makes proxys right away, while you edit with the originals. And then you can edit with the proxies, and then relink to the h.264 originals when you are done, and transcode the final sequence to HQ.
FCP 7 is very limited lately, because it is over 4 years old, and not keeping up with current tech.