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AE Export drifting sync in FCP

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John Orchard
AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 15, 2011 at 6:14:57 pm

Ok guys. What am I doing wrong? This is the first time this has happened, so I'm a bit frustrated. I edited HDV footage in FCP and XML'd via Automatic Duck into After Effects. In AE I color timed and added motion graphics. I exported from AE with these parameters: 29.97, Animation, 48.0KHz, 16 bit. Imported this into FCP and placed into a new 29.97 timeline. I copied and pasted the audio from the original FCP edit timeline into the new timeline with the AE animation export, and the audio drifts out of sync. I've done this literally, thousands of times without any sync issues. What am I doing wrong this time?

Thanks guys!

John

iMac 3.06, 16GB
FCP 7
AE CS4


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Dave LaRonde
Re: AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 15, 2011 at 6:51:27 pm

The three things that come to mind all originate in FCP:
  • mismatches in audio sample rates
  • using compressed audio (mp3, ac3, etc.)
  • cutting long-gop footage

I'd go over that stuff with a fine-tooth comb in FCP. AE 9 can't use long-gop footage, so you'd have to do without The Duck, or use MPEG Streamclip to convert the video before you cut in FCP.

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


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John Orchard
Re: AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 15, 2011 at 7:01:03 pm

Thanks, Dave. I've never had this problem before, never had problems with AE 9 and long-gop HDV footage. All timelines in both programs match, and I haven't compressed the audio any more than what was done already in camera. I have a strange suspicion that it's somewhere in the AE export settings, but again, I haven't changed anything since I last did this. My last option is to use the exported audio from AE, but the thought makes me cringe.


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Dave LaRonde
Re: AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 15, 2011 at 7:21:35 pm

[John Orchard] "...I've never had this problem before, never had problems with AE 9 and long-gop HDV footage...."

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but SOMETHING changed on your machine and your HDV luck has run out. You're not the first person who it's happened to, not by a long shot.

I guess it's time to start capturing that video of yours as ProRes 422. Sorry. It's either that or track down that one miniscule tweak, addition to or deletion from your machine that's taken place between now and the last time it worked properly, which could drive you absolutely nuts... and changing it back may not even help.

The only other thing I can think of: your camera's capable of shooting an actual 30 fps in addition to 29.97, and something got screwed up during the shoot.

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


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Darby Edelen
Re: AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 15, 2011 at 8:07:18 pm

It sounds like a framerate issue, but your workflow sounds pretty solid. I would say the best starting point would be to make sure that not only your framerate but the actual duration of your footage matches in AE and FCP.

If the duration is off then there's a framerate issue we may have overlooked.

You could also do a frame check and go to the exact same time code at a late point in the video in FCP and AE and make sure that you are in fact looking at the same exact frame.

These aren't solutions but hopefully they'll help flush out the problem.

Darby Edelen


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John Orchard
Re: AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 15, 2011 at 8:28:58 pm

Darby... I compared specific points on corresponding timelines in AE and FCP, and they all matched to the frame. This further indicates that it has something to do with AE's export -- right? Dave, I really don't want to accept that after using AE 9 for a year that it decides to dump on me now. We've had a beautiful relationship thus far. On the other hand, the incredible issues I had with Premiere CS3 years ago, nothing would surprise me. Also, importing HDV as APR422 seems like such an incredible waste of space.


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John Orchard
Re: AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 15, 2011 at 9:11:23 pm

Ok... I think I had an Automatic Duck failure. I tried exporting again, and received this error: internal verification failure, sorry! {RenderXMP hit item missed by PreRenderXMP}.

I re-XML'd from FCP via Duck, and no problems. Whew! Thanks for your suggestions guys, I hope this post helps anyone else with similar issues in the future.


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Dave LaRonde
Re: AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 15, 2011 at 9:33:19 pm

Now, here's the hell of it: some time, and probably when you least want it to, AE 9's going to choke on that HDV footage. The solutions: never make any changes to your machine or do the upgrade to AE 10.

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


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John Orchard
Re: AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 15, 2011 at 11:02:50 pm

Does AE 10 have issues with HDV?


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Todd Kopriva
Re: AE Export drifting sync in FCP
on Mar 16, 2011 at 3:46:49 am

> Does AE 10 have issues with HDV?


After Effects CS5 has greatly improved handling of MPEG-based formats, including HDV (which is basically MPEG-2).

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Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
Technical Support for professional video software
After Effects Help & Support
Premiere Pro Help & Support
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