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One codec up from H.264?

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David Dean
One codec up from H.264?
on Jan 15, 2014 at 1:04:03 am

Hi - usually I export sequences from FCP7 using either ProRes or H.264. But I also know that importing an H.264 sequence back INTO the program has its limitations. So, facing that huge list of exporting settings (not only in FCP but also MPEG Streamclip), what codec should I use that will give me the smallest-sized file that FCP will be happier with when it's brought back into the software? (I need to upload sequences to another editor for minor corrections.) Apple Motion JPEG A? Animation? Something else? Many thanks!


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John Pale
Re: One codec up from H.264?
on Jan 15, 2014 at 2:08:05 am

ProRes LT or ProRes proxy. Maybe XDCAM HD.

The ones you mentioned will not give you smaller file sizes and don't have RT playback capability.


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Nick Meyers
Re: One codec up from H.264?
on Jan 15, 2014 at 11:45:14 am

"(I need to upload sequences to another editor for minor corrections.)"

the ideal format would be the one you are editing with.
that would have the least amount of degradation (none)
export as a Quicktime move, leave set to Current Settings


nick


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David Dean
Re: One codec up from H.264? (PLUS MASKING QUESTION)
on Jan 15, 2014 at 2:03:06 pm

Thanks, everyone. I should be more specific, and it leads to a second question. I've edited a 93-minute feature that the cinematographer now wants to put a widescreen 2.35:1 mask on. I need to upload the film to him, in Quicktime format, so he can create a new FCP timeline on his own, apply the mask and then, using the blade tool to create subclips in the QT movie, reposition the shots up or down to fit correctly (to his eye) within the letterbox. He'll then upload the timeline back to me and I'll paste the repositioned attributes onto the actual color-graded clips on my timeline. For that reason I wanted the smallest-sized file I could create; hence the codec question.

But here's the second question. Unlike in Avid, where a single effect can be placed on an upper video track and it changes multiple clips beneath it, I can't find a way to place a single "widescreen" mask over the entire film so the clips beneath it can be manipulated. Placing it on the clip itself raises and lowers the letterbox as well, and placing it on a slug on V2 masks the center of the image, not the letterbox. This seems like a really basic thing to do, but I can't make it work. Thanks!


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jerry wise
Re: One codec up from H.264? (PLUS MASKING QUESTION)
on Jan 15, 2014 at 4:44:45 pm

on your timeline right click on your movie and click on "composite mode" "travel matte-alpha". then on a layer below your movie place a white screen. click on the white screen and go to "effects" "video filters" "matte" "widescreen" apply this filter to the white screen. click on "filter" and select 2.35:1. you will see your movie in the proper widescreen. blade cut and reposition your scenes. then render.


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David Dean
Re: One codec up from H.264? (PLUS MASKING QUESTION)
on Jan 15, 2014 at 6:18:13 pm

Wow -- that's great! I never would have thought to put the matte BELOW the movie, but it works simply and beautifully. There's another forum post from a few months ago raising the same issue, and I'd love to copy and paste your response (with your credit, of course) to help that guy out -- the responses there were things like "export a freezeframe and create a mask in Photoshop." (If you'd prefer to do that yourself, do an FCP forum search on "widescreen" and it should be right on top.) Again, many, many thanks.


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