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Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions

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Jason Kupski
Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
on Mar 18, 2010 at 3:06:05 pm

I apologize in advance for the long post and for my ignorance. Also, thank you in advance for reading this... I'll post the questions first and then the follow up info.

Questions:

1. Does this workflow sound correct: Footage shot with 1080i handy cam, ripped with vegas to m2ts, converted to DV widescreen (AVI Container), spliced with vegas, audio correction with soundbooth, video correction with AE (the following corrections were in the same comp):
De-interlaced w/ frames plus
De-noised
Color corrected with Colorista


Then rendered to Video for Windows (Lossless, AVI Container), compressed to MPG2 with something else (Maybe Encore?? i haven't gotten to that step yet)

The main reason I am asking this question is that for my 2 hour video i am getting a rendering time of 45 hours or so and it is taking around 200 gigs of hard drive space

2. I applied all 3 effects list above to the same comp, should i have applied then individually? (ie. de interlacing) then rendered, then de-noised and color corrected?

3. Does de-interlacing video provide a benefit? when the final video will be on a dvd that will be viewed with both SD and HD set top players / TV's? (I've read conflicting information)

4. Andrew @ Videocopilot.net recommends rendering the video to quicktime format. I'd prefer vid for windows, will I be losing anything? Would quicktime reduce my rendering time?

5. Preferences: My Hardware:(win 7 64 bit, hardware: core i7, 6 gigs ram, (2) SSD's raid 0, (2) 10k RPM drives (not currently in raid due to an issue causing me to break the raid), Nvidia GTS 250 (interim card waiting for Fermi)

Current Settings:
OpenGL off (for rendering)
Render Multiple Frames Simultaneously - ON
CPU for other applications - 1 (i saw a performance increase when i changed this number from 2 to 1)

Faster rendering slider to the right completely (for rendering only)
Ram to leave for other applications: 1.5 GB (which gives each core 1.5 gigs... as opposed to the recommended 2 gigs)
Prevent DLL Address Space Fragmentation: OFF

Media Disk Cache: ON with size set to 2 gigs and running off the raid SSD's.

Do these look acceptable ?

Non pertinent info: This is my first foray into 'real' video editing, which is probably evident due to my ignorance on the subject. At the start of my project I had no intention of using After Effects (and just using Vegas) but I came across some tutorials at AEtuts that just looked like a lot of fun to do. Plus we had AE at my office (arch firm) So I plunged in feet first to one of the more complex tuts. Now i need to continue to work through the basic tutorials lol. I have to say that the community for AE is absolutely amazing. Tutorials, information, tips & tricks etc. are plentiful, even more so than the CAD based community that I typically deal with. SO thanks to everyone that has helped me and others, with an additional thanks to Lloyd Alvarez, Andrew from videocopilot, and some Aussie dude whom i can't remember his name haha.

Thanks for your time!
J


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Michael Szalapski
Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
on Mar 18, 2010 at 6:26:38 pm

[Jason Kupski] 1. Does this workflow sound correct
If your output is intended only to be standard definition, then sure. Depending on what AVI codec you used.
As a side question, when you say "ripped" do you mean captured?

[Jason Kupski] The main reason I am asking this question is that for my 2 hour video i am getting a rendering time of 45 hours or so and it is taking around 200 gigs of hard drive space
Uncompressed video takes up a ton of space. I do animations that are 2 Gigs in size and they're around 20 seconds long.

[Jason Kupski] 2. I applied all 3 effects list above to the same comp, should i have applied then individually? (ie. de interlacing) then rendered, then de-noised and color corrected?
No. The only reason you would need to prerender something is if you're working on rather complex animations and a system is getting bogged down with certain parts. (Check in the help files for info on prerendering.)

[Jason Kupski] 3. Does de-interlacing video provide a benefit? when the final video will be on a dvd that will be viewed with both SD and HD set top players / TV's? (I've read conflicting information)
If your original footage was SD and your final display was DVD, I would say not much benefit for progressive since your source footage is interlaced. If you were going to the web, I would suggest going progressive, but you're not. I like to keep things as close to the source footage as possible. However, your source is HD interlaced. Why not try some tests?

[Jason Kupski] 4. Andrew @ Videocopilot.net recommends rendering the video to quicktime format. I'd prefer vid for windows, will I be losing anything? Would quicktime reduce my rendering time?
If you use Quicktime with the PNG codec you will get smaller file sizes than straight uncompressed AVI even though they're both lossless.

[Jason Kupski] 5. ...[system specs]... Do these look acceptable?
I would always suggest at least 2 GB of RAM per core. Here's an Adobe employee explaining it. Here's info on optimizing your system.

Also, in case you hadn't seen it, here's the best place to start learning AE besides buying the Total Training DVD's. And here's another page of learning resources.

- The Great Szalam
(The 'Great' stands for 'Not So Great, in fact, Extremely Humble')

No trees were harmed in the creation of this message, but several thousand electrons were mildly inconvenienced.


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Jason Kupski
Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
on Mar 18, 2010 at 8:39:42 pm

Michael,
Thanks a lot for your reply i appreciate it. In answer to your questions:

  • If your output is intended only to be standard definition, then sure. Depending on what AVI codec you used.
    As a side question, when you say "ripped" do you mean captured?


  • I used the standard Video For Windows with No Compression. Should I have used another codec? It is my limited understanding that since AE doesn't do multi-pass I should use another program for compressing to mpg. I'll definitely try your suggestions of the QT PNG format

    Yes, I meant captured, sorry about that!

  • Uncompressed video takes up a ton of space. I do animations that are 2 Gigs in size and they're around 20 seconds long.


  • That's good to know, i wasn't expecting such a lengthy render time and such a large file size. I didn't know if i had an incorrect setting or was doing something improperly.

  • However, your source is HD interlaced. Why not try some tests?


  • That sounds like a good idea. I was planning on doing that if I couldn't find a definitive answer.

  • If you use Quicktime with the PNG codec you will get smaller file sizes than straight uncompressed AVI even though they're both lossless.


  • I will have to try that, smaller file sizes would be beneficial.

  • I would always suggest at least 2 GB of RAM per core. Here's an Adobe employee explaining it. Here's info on optimizing your system.


  • I read through that a few times and did some prelim testing. I tried 2 cores for multi w/ 2+ gigs of ram allocated to background processes and then 3 cores with 1.5. (as well as a couple of others). Once i changed the settings i started the render and looked at the render time length. After changing it to 3 cores w/ 1.5 (and the other settings mentioned before) it seemed to drop the estimated render time by a significant 15-20 hours. I currently don't know the 'long term' affects of changing it to 1.5 gigs but after 7 hours of rendering everything seemed to be working fine. If/when i end up doing a lot more editing in the future i'll stick another 6 gigs of ram into the system. (although it will reduce my ram speed)

    One question i couldn't find an answer for though was Prevent DLL Address Space Fragmentation... whats considered a large amount of memory?
    I've spent many hours on the help.adobe.com site and followed most of the suggestions on Getting Started with After Effects.

    Those total training DVD's are quite expensive. I was thinking of getting a subscription to Lynda or VTC (i've used both in the past for other programs). They're a lot less expensive and once I work through those I may pick up the total training.

    Anyways, thanks again for the assistance!
    j


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    Michael Szalapski
    Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
    on Mar 18, 2010 at 9:36:08 pm

    [Jason Kupski ] Those total training DVD's are quite expensive. I was thinking of getting a subscription to Lynda or VTC (i've used both in the past for other programs). They're a lot less expensive and once I work through those I may pick up the total training.


    I wouldn't. What I liked about Total Training for AE was that it built from the very basics and worked its way up from there. If you're going to do it, I would start with it and go the whole way rather than picking it up after you already know the program well.

    - The Great Szalam
    (The 'Great' stands for 'Not So Great, in fact, Extremely Humble')

    No trees were harmed in the creation of this message, but several thousand electrons were mildly inconvenienced.


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    Jason Kupski
    Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
    on Mar 18, 2010 at 7:10:29 pm

    Oh before I offend anyone, (or maybe it's too late) I did go through a lot of beginner tutorials (videocopilot, AEtuts), spent many hours on help.adobe.com, went through all of the tutorials at redgiant and countless others. My questions are ones that I either found conflicting information for or could not find a clear answer.
    Thanks!
    j


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    Dave LaRonde
    Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
    on Mar 18, 2010 at 7:48:32 pm

    I agree with everything Michael says.

    I would make one change to preserve more image quality throughout the process: I wouldn't convert to DV widescreen in Vegas or whatever you're using, I would convert to something else that's still HD but NOT mts, or whatever it was... something lossless, if possible. Render in HD out of AE in a lossless codec. Put the finishing touches on in Vegas... and NOW you can think about converting it to something that's SD Widescreen.

    You have to get used to REALLY BIG file sizes when working with video. It's just a fact of life. Those who crow about their smaller file sizes when they do video are doing their images no favors.

    A woman on the AE Basics forum asked what codec I would recommend. Here's my reply:
    http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/202/885334


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


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    Jason Kupski
    Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
    on Mar 18, 2010 at 9:05:18 pm

    Thanks for your reply Dave!
    Looks like I will be getting QT Pro along with a couple of large hard drives! (My primary system is built for speed and all of my large drives are on my fileserver)

    Re-rendering the captured footage into something lossless sounds like a great idea. Hopefully Vegas will be able to use the PNG codec. If not i might be able to change the file extension to MPG and it might be able to be imported to AE directly.

    Thanks again!
    j




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    Dave LaRonde
    Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
    on Mar 18, 2010 at 10:11:14 pm

    If Vegas is anything like Final Cut Pro, you can assign a codec to an edit timeline. So when it's time to finish up the project in Vegas, remember to duplicate the edit timeline and change it's codec to something good. MPEG hardly qualifies as good.

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


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    Jason Kupski
    Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
    on Mar 19, 2010 at 7:43:27 pm

    Michael,
    I was/am very reluctant to spend clost to $100 per disk for the total training tutorials since this isn't my field of work however I found that total training offers an extremely reasonable monthly subscription. For $25 a month i can have access to them all! Oh man im excited about this, thanks!

    Dave,
    I picked up QT Pro last night so i could render in your recommended PNG format and it is a big help! File sizes are definitely smaller.
    I also switched my memory preferences to 2 gigs of ram per core and am only using 2 cores for background rendering. These factors along with turning off the magic bullet frames plus 'effect' cut my render time down from 45+ hours to about 11 or so. I need to rerender the original footage since vegas will do the PNG format and just keep it in HD until the end.

    As far as MPG, i know it it's not good but isn't the the format for DVD's? Should I let encore do the encoding or use media encoder to create the MPG file and use the MPG files in encore?

    Thanks!
    Jason


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    Dave LaRonde
    Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
    on Mar 19, 2010 at 8:42:17 pm

    [Jason Kupski] "As far as MPG, i know it it's not good but isn't the the format for DVD's?"

    Yes: MPEG2, to be precise. But even if your camera records MPEG2, you have to remember that it's a lossy codec. Every time you'd render, you'd lose quality. So you get the footage you shot into the best possible codec you can as soon as you can, and you keep in the best possible codec until you have to deliver.



    [Jason Kupski] "Should I let encore do the encoding or use media encoder to create the MPG file and use the MPG files in encore? "

    No clue -- I use Apple Compressor for that stuff.

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


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    Jason Kupski
    Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
    on Mar 19, 2010 at 8:51:19 pm

    Sounds good, i'm not familiar with apple compressor but a quick search indicates that it essentially equivalent to adobe encoder. (Ie its not the DVD authoring software ?)
    So i think that answer my question, use a 3rd party encoder for the mpeg2 final conversion as opposed to the internal encoders for the DVD authoring software.

    Thanks!
    j


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    Michael Szalapski
    Re: Rendering, Preferences, General Workflow questions
    on Mar 20, 2010 at 2:01:56 am

    Encore's actually pretty good at encoding into MPEG-2. I only ever use other software if I have a specific issue.

    - The Great Szalam
    (The 'Great' stands for 'Not So Great, in fact, Extremely Humble')

    No trees were harmed in the creation of this message, but several thousand electrons were mildly inconvenienced.


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