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dan smith
basic codec question
on Jan 4, 2012 at 3:01:54 pm

Hi, Sorry this might seem obvious but i'd love to get a definitive answer:

I have a client who needs 'high-res' versions of some media. We shot on 5D (1080p 25) and we always go to pro-res hq - so my master is a prores 422 quicktime. My client wants a 'high-res' file to create various different encodes from, however he doesnt have a large storage device or an edit suite so uncompressed, prores, dnx hd and hdcam are not options for him.

The best I can come up without an edit codec is mpeg2. would you agree? my thinking is that h264 would be too compressed to get good results were he to transcode, where as mpeg2 is less compressed and might yeild better results. Am I wrong?

Thanks!

Dan


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Shane Ross
Re: basic codec question
on Jan 4, 2012 at 7:45:17 pm

Yes, you are wrong. H.264 is less compressed than MPEG-2. Your camera, in fact, shoots H.264. H.264 is a far superior codec.

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


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dan smith
Re: basic codec question
on Jan 5, 2012 at 6:30:59 pm

ok, thanks.

Is the case then, that h264 is the best mastering codec and i have been misguidedly using prores to archive all of our masters on needlessly large storage devices?

is it possible to move between h264 and prores back and forth without loosing quality? Is h264 then, a lossless codec spec, I thought not?

As I understood, we transcode our canon h264s to prores for editing and grading, but to transfer them back to h264 (i.e for a master) would result in a loss of data thereafter?

or Is there a better solution to my issue and havn't asked the right question?

thanks!

Dan


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Shane Ross
Re: basic codec question
on Jan 5, 2012 at 6:38:58 pm

[dan smith] "Is the case then, that h264 is the best mastering codec and i have been misguidedly using prores to archive all of our masters on needlessly large storage devices?"

H.264 is fine for web mastering and DVD mastering, but as a mastering format for something you want to go to air, or use again in future projects, it is not the best format.

[dan smith] "is it possible to move between h264 and prores back and forth without loosing quality?"

LORD no. You lose quality when you encode back and forth. ProRes to ProRes you can do over 12 times without losing quality. H.264...because of the low low data rate, a lot of information is getting tossed out.

[dan smith] "Is h264 then, a lossless codec spec, I thought not?"

Nope...not by a long shot. ProRes...DNxHD...Animation...Photo JPEG 100%...those are lossless.

[dan smith] "As I understood, we transcode our canon h264s to prores for editing and grading, but to transfer them back to h264 (i.e for a master) would result in a loss of data thereafter?"

Yes.

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


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Andrew Rendell
Re: basic codec question
on Jan 6, 2012 at 12:25:18 pm

+1 to everything Shane writes.

I've delivered files over the last couple of years for a similar thing (my client makes several different versions on a PC) and what has worked well has been H.264 video, but stepping into the settings and putting the quality up to highest, and .aac at 384kbps for the audio. Recodes for that to make flash (for the web), standard def DVDs, etc, have been fine.


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dan smith
Re: basic codec question
on Jan 30, 2012 at 2:16:55 pm

cool. thanks.


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