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Aliasing in FCP

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Josh Figatner
Aliasing in FCP
on Jun 17, 2009 at 2:13:07 am

Hello everone,

I'm having difficulties with an aliasing issue in FCP 6.0.5. I suspect it's a compression issue but if that's true I would also like some advice on how to move forward.

I'm working on a 10-min project for broadcast that involves live action footage and also an animation that I've created in Motion. The sequence setting is 720x480, DV/NTSC compressor, NTSC CCIR 601 Pixel aspect ratio.

Everything looks fine until I drop in the animation from motion. I get some jagged lines in what should be a smooth red curved line. The weird thing is that unrendered, the animation looks great; it's when I render it in the timeline that the aliasing appears.

I've tried re-exporting the Motion animation in many formats including h.264; animation; apple ProRes; and mpeg and they all have the exact same issue: looks fine in the timeline unrendered, aliasing when rendered. I know red is probably the worst color to go with for a thin line, but I didn't think it would be this bad. Is there anything that I'm missing here?

If it is indeed the nature of the sequence setting in FCP I'm using, can I just create a new sequence and copy/paste all the footage into the new one?

Thank you very much for any light you pros can shed on the issue,


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John Pale
Re: Aliasing in FCP
on Jun 17, 2009 at 2:53:19 am are showing screen shots of the Canvas. This is not what you should be judging your quality need an external video monitor for that. You can get a better idea if you set your Canvas to 100% (its 74% in the screenshot)...but its not a substitute for an external monitor.

Second...your Sequence Codec is DVNTSC, which is pretty bad for graphics...though on a broadcast monitor, it probably will look a little better than what you are seeing in the Canvas.

You can use Uncompressed or ProRes as your sequence setting (and your Motion setting)...this will improve things...but if you master back to DV tape you will lose all the benefit, as you will be getting hit with DV compression again.

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