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"old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?

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Jorge Sinclair
"old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 2, 2016 at 1:17:46 pm

Hi, we are an old cinema school in France and the one and only having always used Media100 instead of FCP or Avid.
The fact is that, apart from several Media100i systems, we have the chance to own an "old" Optibase Media100HD (hardware and software).
Why is it a chance ? Because, having hundreds of hours of SD rushes in 4/3, we can transform them into HD 16/9 cropping them in such a custom way that heads are not cut at eyebrows level -the way you get it with a blind SYMETRICAL crop. Nooop ! Optibase Media10HD allows us to place the crop up or down wherever we wont, which is fabulous.
When we got the publicity of Media100 brand new software only version we hurried to buy it... Great desapointment, the possibility of setting the crop higher or lower in a custom way has desapeared!!! Why ???
To be perfectly honest, the main advantage of Media100 has always been the glorious quality of it's algorithms. But from a practical and editor's point of view, FCP or Avid presents more options and are continuously evolving. So we think it's a waste Media100 doesn't keep on making the difference on these "little details" that made us choosing it.
By the way, we would like, either an advice about this subject or if someone is eventually selling an optibase Media100HD system, let us know. We would like to have a spare one. Thanks in advance. - Jorge


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Michael Slowe
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 2, 2016 at 6:39:00 pm

Jorge, although I'm not currently in from of my editing Mac with Media 100 open, I can assure you that the later versions do still allow a choice of crop, i.e. top or side or a combination of both. I have one of the Suite 2 versions and have recently been adapting some 4:3 productions to 16:9, so I know it works. The option has not disappeared.

Michael Slowe


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Jorge Sinclair
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 2, 2016 at 11:18:32 pm

Thank you for your fast answer Michael. I do know that the option of cropping exist in the new software version. You still have either the pillarbox or the letterbox, and the crop. But the crop is symetric, meaning that it takes the center of the image, cropping equally the top and the bottom of the 4/3 frame to fulfill the 16/9. In long shots that works fine, but in close-ups or even in standard dialog framing, the top of the head of the actor is wiped out, sometimes at the eyebrows level.
On the "old" hardware HD version instead, you can move the crop up or down as you want, deciding for instance to do only a little crop on the top of the image, which is automatically compensated with a big crop of the lower part in order to keep the 16/9 proportions. And, oh miracle, you can do this at acquisition, so the file you have in your bin and later on the timeline is already cropped the right way, and in HD. And you car save in memory as many custom settings as you want, so yo can reframe shot by shot with slight differences if you are maniac enough. That's what the newer version lacks (unless we are blind, but I swear we have searched !) Thanks again Michael.

Jorge


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Michael Slowe
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 3, 2016 at 11:05:37 am

Yes Jorge, you are probably right about that. I only crop using the 'top & side' facility, you are wanting to do more. Others may be able to advise but I can't think that they would have deliberately removed that function.

Michael Slowe


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Dave McCarthy
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 4, 2016 at 12:30:22 am

The custom setting was a hardware feature of the HDx board. Other boards from other manufacturers can't do it. You can do a software conform using the moving objects editor and choose a custom transformation.


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Jorge Sinclair
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 5, 2016 at 11:14:57 am

Thk you indeed Dave. Now I have my answer, and it fits something I suspected already: we easily forget the past, so 4/3 productions are condamned to belong to cinema museums. That includes unfortunately all independent films, even rather recent, fimed in 16mm...
Luckyly Media100 had thought about it and made the transfer from 4/3 to 16/9 easily possible, even if it lasted only one software generation (media100 11.5)That's life, nowadays life.

Jorge


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Marcus Warren
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 7, 2016 at 10:03:15 pm

Is the kind of crop you want something that you can achieve in RED? Even if you have to run RED stand-alone?


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Jaeson Koszarsky
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 6, 2016 at 5:30:24 pm

I've experienced a similar "changed hardware, lost feature" with an older NLE on my Amiga. Updating from MovieShop4 to MovieShop5, also required updating hardware. With the old hardware, there was a real-time chromakey feature. But it was lost along the way with chipset changes & upgrades for the new hardware. The new system was definitely worth it and feature rich but many lamented the loss of the real-time chromakey that now had to be duplicated with software rendering.

The latest version of Media100 offers a lot of new features that make it worthwhile. There are Media100 re-rendering options that can achieve what you want to do with custom re-cropping but certainly not as ideal as the realtime hardware solution of yesteryear.

I use Sorenson Squeeze when I want to crop & reframe my raw footage before bringing it into Media100. I need to convert the MTS files anyway before using Media100. For a straight quick conversion, I use Clip-Wrap. For other needs, like crop/reframe/etc, I use Squeeze to make prores files.



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Jorge Sinclair
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 5, 2016 at 10:53:38 am

Hi Michael,
I got the answer through a very short and clear post from Mr MacCarthy (who I thank indeed): my custom settings are only possible through a hardware operation -like the one possible with the Opcode's cards- That's the secret. Software only systems seems to have difficulties in this kind of treatment. Now I know. Thnk you folks

Jorge


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Thomas Bertay
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 4, 2016 at 6:38:09 pm

Hi Jorge,

I run a independant post-production company in Paris, so let's speak french.

Nous utilisons ici une station Media 100 HDx (optibase) sur G5 parfaitement opérationnelle et dont je sais et vante la qualité pour les cross conversion depuis bien longtemps. Parlons-en de vive voix.

Vous pourrez me joindre à tout moment à cette adresse : thomasbertay@sycomorefilms.com

Bien cordialement.

Thomas Bertay
Sycomore films

Thomas B


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Michael Slowe
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 5, 2016 at 11:32:23 am

Thomas, I absolutely agree with all you say (I have to in order to preserve the entente cordiale!)

Could someone please tell me, following the Jorge query about software / hardware, is my system - Suite 2.1 with the AJA card - as good as the earlier one that Jorge had?

Michael Slowe


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Dave McCarthy
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 5, 2016 at 6:02:24 pm

My point was that after the HDx hardware became obsolete, it was replaced by a much more flexible Conform option in software, with keyframeable cropping, rotation, etc. The downside of the software solution is that it requires rendering. So is the new version "better" than the old version? I think so, because it runs on today's Macs and has more features.


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Michael Slowe
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 5, 2016 at 7:02:24 pm

Thanks Dave for your explanation. One more question though. Re conforming old 4:3 productions to 16:9 aspect is something that I'm often having to do. Is there still a way to re adjust the centre of the frame as described by Jorge in his first post?

Michael Slowe


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Dave McCarthy
Re: "old" Media100HD better than the newest version ?
on Jan 6, 2016 at 6:09:42 pm

Yes, the software conform can set a custom crop area. In addition the crop area can change inside the duration of the clip, meaning you can create a "pan and scan" effect, zoom, etc.


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