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Max to NTSC analog television standard??

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Max to NTSC analog television standard??
on May 7, 2005 at 5:42:27 am

Hey everyone!

I'm making some 3d animations for my employer but I'm having issues converting them to NTSC television standard. I render right out of max into quicktime .mov format, with the resolution settings to NTSC (D-1 I believe. I've tried DV as well). Then when my employer tries to set it up to run on analog television, it's eithers distoreted by lines, or just plain incorrect. What might I be doing wrong? I've tried converting my current renders within after effects as well and still no go. Any help would be greatly appreciated!


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Colin Thomson
Re: Max to NTSC analog television standard??
on May 7, 2005 at 3:25:59 pm

Are you rendering at 720x480? Also try check on Render to Fields. Your lighting also is a big factor as well. Hope this helps ...


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Sean Cusson
Re: Max to NTSC analog television standard??
on May 7, 2005 at 3:50:13 pm

I'm my experience, these are always the things to check when something goes wrong with an import into an NLE (edit software). Is it D1 or DV? D1 is 720x486 while DV is 720x480. Which fields setting does the NLE want? Upper or Lower? Check the pixel aspect ratio. Depending on your rendering settings (which I can only guess at), you may be rendering to square pixels (4:3) instead of D1/DV NTSC (0.9). What codec are you rendering to? Is it going to an Avid? Final Cut Pro? Discreet edit? They all have codecs that they "prefer". When rendering out of Max, I usually render to an image sequence (like targa) without fields, and then render out of After Effects or combustion. I know these probably aren't specific answers to your exact situation but it may help you track down the problems.

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Frank Ringwald
Re: Max to NTSC analog television standard??
on May 8, 2005 at 11:43:54 am

Though I am living in PAL-world, I say, this "different standard with same name+" thing is a pain in the a**, but hard to ignore yet.

Sean, you solved that puzzle pretty well:

[Sean:] "I usually render to an image sequence (like targa) without fields,"

Using a codec before final edit, mostly means loss of imagequality in the workflow. Needing more storage space instead, can be neglected.

But sometimes fields are usefull, if not necessary. When rendering an animation with fast movements, the changes in the image go "trough" the fields and make it look smoother.

But I guess, thats all history in a 1 or 2 years, with HD 60p resp. 50p is standard.



Frank Ringwald
Digital Artist & Trainer
FX Garden, Berlin

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B.J. Ahlen
Re: Max to NTSC analog television standard??
on May 10, 2005 at 5:46:28 pm

[Frank Ringwald] "different standard with same name+"

How about NTSC 29.97 fps? The standard says it is really 30*1000/1001 = 29.97002997002997002997002997003.

Older versions of After Effects (before 6.5) use 29.97 exactly, which means that the sync is off after a while. AE6.5 and up let you choose whether to use the exact right number or the old wrong number for compatibility reasons.

Same thing for most NLEs (except Vegas which always had it right).

The NTSC PAR (Pixel Aspect Ratio) is 0.9, right?
Well, Rec. 601 says it's actually 10/11 = 0.90909090909090909090909090909091

Gotta love the fractious guys who came up with these... :O)

I doubt the format wars will be settled within 1-2 years, and I don't see how 50p/60p could make it in time for even remotely widespread deployment by that time. It's heavy on the bandwidth and the beancounters would rather offer 5-10 programs of really low quality at really low quality than say a single good 1080/60p channel.

Perhaps 24p/35p/30p. I'd love to be proven wrong on this one...

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