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New to AE/Windows, completely lost codec-wise

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Zopiro da Tracia
New to AE/Windows, completely lost codec-wise
on Nov 2, 2013 at 5:28:27 am

I'm used to After Effects on Mac, and usually have go-to codecs for every project. This time I have to work on a Windows PC, a very fast and reliable machine, but I'm completely lost as to what codecs use. It's video editing + effects work. There will be color grading and image stabilization, as well as lettering overlays, going back and forth to Final Cut Pro on a Mac.

What should I look into, codec-wise?

Cheers


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Todd Kopriva
Re: New to AE/Windows, completely lost codec-wise
on Nov 2, 2013 at 3:50:58 pm

What were you using on Mac OS? In most cases, you don't need to change how you were working just because of a change of OS. If you install QuickTime on your computer with Windows, you have access to virtually the same set of codecs (without the one notable exception being the ability to write to ProRes).

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Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
After Effects quality engineering
After Effects team blog
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Zopiro da Tracia
Re: New to AE/Windows, completely lost codec-wise
on Nov 4, 2013 at 1:35:03 am

I'm used to ProRes for most things, AIC for proxies and h264 for delivery.

I've installed QT and ProRes. ProRes on Windows is apparently really slow.

What is common practice for editors who use Windows? Most mac professionals I know are used to ProRes. What would be the Microsoft equivalent?


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Walter Soyka
Re: New to AE/Windows, completely lost codec-wise
on Nov 5, 2013 at 6:24:24 pm

[Zopiro da Tracia] "I'm used to ProRes for most things, AIC for proxies and h264 for delivery."

AIC -- eww. I guess they're only proxies, but I'd still consider some flavor of ProRes on a Mac. Maybe ProRes LT or ProRes Proxy would be appropriate.


[Zopiro da Tracia] "What is common practice for editors who use Windows? Most mac professionals I know are used to ProRes. What would be the Microsoft equivalent?"

Some folks still use QuickTime, but use either animation or PNG. Caveats here are that file sizes can get pretty big, and while both support an alpha channel for transparency, you are limited to 8-bit output.

I use image sequences pretty frequently when I require greater bit depth.

I also use GoPro CineForm extensively as an intermediate format. It's cross-platform, and the decoder is free.

Avid's DNxHD is another good option. It's available as a free download for QuickTime on both Macs and PCs from Avid, and Creative Cloud supports DNxHD in MXF out of the box. DNxHD is very similar to ProRes, both in terms of quality and available bit rates. It's worth noting that DNxHD (currently) only supports standard HD rasters and frame rates.

Walter Soyka
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Zopiro da Tracia
Re: New to AE/Windows, completely lost codec-wise
on Nov 6, 2013 at 12:14:55 pm

I use AIC mostly due to small file sizes. Never tried other flavors of ProRes besides HQ!

Animation is a pain to transfer between machines. Things will get easier now that I fitted them both with gigabit lan cards

Thanks buddy I'll look into DNxHD!


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