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help with AF to FCP files

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kiley lanehelp with AF to FCP files
by on Aug 12, 2009 at 4:24:26 pm

I am using FCP 6 and we have subbed out graphics to be done in After Effects CS3. The footage was shot in HDV in front of a green screen so the green screening, in and out graphics were all done in AF.

Now, when I bring the files, which bogged down the graphic's guys' computer, into FCP they will no play back. The machine gets clogged, thus I cannot edit or export off the timeline.

We have tried 8 bit uncomp, H.264, animation, and none settings. H.264 seems to playback, but there is major artifacting going on with the graphic and even then playback is stuttering. What is happening, why can't my computer handle these files and what can I do? They are :30 and :60 sec commercials.

Any help?

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Dave LaRondeRe: help with AF to FCP files
by on Aug 12, 2009 at 7:31:53 pm

H.264 is NOT a good editing codec in Final Cut Pro. Change to a different codec. You may have to recapture the footage. That's tough, but those are the breaks.

Secondly, H.264 isn't a good codec to use in AE, either. Read on:

Dave's Stock Answer #1:

If the footage you imported into AE is any kind of the following -- footage in an HDV acquisition codec, MPEG1, MPEG2, mp4, m2t, H.261 or H.264 -- you need to convert it to a different codec.

These kinds of footage use temporal, or interframe compression. They have keyframes at regular intervals, containing complete frame information. However, the frames in between do NOT have complete information. Interframe codecs toss out duplicated information.

In order to maintain peak rendering efficiency, AE needs complete information for each and every frame. But because these kinds of footage contain only partial information, AE freaks out, resulting in a wide variety of problems.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA

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Tony BrittanRe: help with AF to FCP files
by on Aug 13, 2009 at 2:57:31 am

Hey Dave...I'm new to AE (using cs4) and my workflow is usually 1080i60 transcoded during transfer to ProRes (non HQ) in FCP.

Does AE work well with ProRes files like I'll be using? Also, what settings are best for me to use in AE for things I'll use in FCP and best way to render/export out (ie codec) of AE to use in my projects?

Thanks in advance and sorry if I highjacked the thread.

Tony Brittan
Apple Certified Pro - FCP

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kiley laneRe: help with AF to FCP files
by on Aug 17, 2009 at 4:37:34 pm

Thanks! But then what codec do you recommend exporting as a high quality quicktime? especially if the person I am giving the files to does not have FCP installed on their computer, therefore, they cannot accept straight uncompressed FCP files-which I'm guessing is the best codec to use.

Also, we use h.264 for a lot of client requests when wanting to convert and put the files on the web. I have not had good luck making a WMP or Flash file directly from FCP.


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