Latest post Sun, Jun 24 2012 6:20 PM by Job ter Burg. 8 replies.
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  • Sat, Jun 23 2012 2:26 AM

    • Sibz
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    • Joined on Mon, Aug 22 2011
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    Avid Media Composer 5.5 Import and Export codecs/resolutions

    I'm a new Media Composer user and I'm not very sure which codecs/resolutions to use in importing and exporting my files; essentially: What codec should I use for import? What codec should I use for export? (highest quality) What does batch import do? What is the meaning of DNxHD, and does Media Composer come with it or do I have to download it separately? (I hope that doesn't sound like a stupid question) 

    I think I have to clarify my import question, because when I did research on that question, different people seemed to have different import codec options for the particular type of file they were importing. I use a Panasonic AG-HMC40 for all my video which is .MTS files, and it is also HD. (AVCHD files) The following are the import resolution options. Please tell me what each one of these means, and which are the highest/lowest quality, and the smallest/largest files. Also, are these MXF files all part of DNxHD, or not/is that something entirely different? Are they HD codec options, or are they all SD? Thanks in advance.

    DV 45 211 MXF

    DV 50 MXF

    15:1s MXF

    10:1m MXF

    4:1m MXF

    4:1s MXF

    2:1s MXF

    20:1 MXF

    10:1 MXF

    3:1 MXF

    2:1 MXF

    MPEG 30 MXF

    MPEG 40 MXF

    MPEG 50 MXF

    1:1 MXF

    1:1 10b MXF

  • Sat, Jun 23 2012 6:09 AM In reply to

    Re: Avid Media Composer 5.5 Import and Export codecs/resolutions

    Sibz:
    What codec should I use for import?
    That depends on what your source footage is. But in SD, compressions are listed as x:x where 1:1x is uncompressed. Most are 8-bit, unless they are named 10b, but that only makes sense if your source footage is originated in 10bit. In HD, compressions are listed by data rates, higher datarates mean more bandwidth so less compression.

    Sibz:
    What codec should I use for export? (highest quality)
    Depends on your delivery requirements. The cleanest way to export from Avid is to use the Same As Source option in the export window. That exports a QT file in the very same resolution your sequence is in.

    Sibz:
    What does batch import do?
    Re-imports footage into existing master clips. Many applications for that function. One of them would be that you import library music from an MP3 download, then later want to replace it with a full blown uncompressed WAV file. Select the clip(s), point to the new WAV files and the master clips are re-imported, now filled with the uncompressed WAV.

    Sibz:
    What is the meaning of DNxHD
    DNxHD is Avid's own HD compression type. You can read more about it on www.avid.com/dnxhd. In essence, it is a codec that lets you work with HD frame sizes within the bandwidth that was traditionally available in (uncompressed) SD pipelines. And it is a codec that holds up well over multiple generations, so it is nice to use in post production, where multiple subsequent renders may happen.

    Sibz:
    do I have to download it separately?
    No, it is installed when you install your Avid editor.

    Sibz:
    Are they HD codec options, or are they all SD

    What you list is all SD. That tells me that you have your project set up for SD. If you go to the Project Window, Format tab, you can change it to HD. That will give you HD resolutions for import, capture and/or render.

    I have little to no experience with MTS files, and I don't think MC5.5 will import these directly, hope others will chime in. In v6 you can AMA-link to these files and then transcode them, AFAIK.

     

    Media Composer /w Symphony option | PT-HD | Win7Pro64 HP | OSX MBP | ISIS5000 | Nitris DX | Artist Mix & Transport & Color | AJA T-Tap | Decklink... [view my complete system specs]
  • Sat, Jun 23 2012 5:34 PM In reply to

    • Sibz
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    • Joined on Mon, Aug 22 2011
    • Posts 6
    • Points 90

    Re: Avid Media Composer 5.5 Import and Export codecs/resolutions

    Job ter Burg:
    That tells me that you have your project set up for SD. If you go to the Project Window, Format tab, you can change it to HD. That will give you HD resolutions for import, capture and/or render.

    Yes, that indeed was my problem. Now, I can import using the DNxHD format, and now it actually looks HD when I'm editing. Also, I did a test export using the settings you described (same as source) and that worked out excellently. I'm doing some tests on importing as well, and I don't see much difference between the DNxHD 220 X MXF and 1:1 MXF, is DNxHD just a smaller file, but an equal amount of quality as 1:1? Thanks for all your help.

  • Sat, Jun 23 2012 5:42 PM In reply to

    Re: Avid Media Composer 5.5 Import and Export codecs/resolutions

    1:1 means uncompressed. The 'X' in DNxHD220X means 10bit (which is of no use if you start from 8-bit media, such as your MTS files), and it will be compressed. The X just means that you compress more bits into the same bandwidth, and since your source is 8-bit, you are using part of that bandwidth for two empty bits.

    But even regular 8-bit 220 (non-X) would still be overkill, because your MTS source footage is already so severely compressed. Using 145 (non-X) will likely suffice. Nothing wrong with going 220 if you can spare the drive space. Going with 1:1 is possible but I don't see any benefit in it for your workflow.

    Media Composer /w Symphony option | PT-HD | Win7Pro64 HP | OSX MBP | ISIS5000 | Nitris DX | Artist Mix & Transport & Color | AJA T-Tap | Decklink... [view my complete system specs]
  • Sat, Jun 23 2012 6:02 PM In reply to

    Re: Avid Media Composer 5.5 Import and Export codecs/resolutions

    In the early stages of a project I find it better to import at a lower resolution (ie, DV25 or 15:1s).  Then I do my edit and when we have pix lock, I will Batch Import the final Seq to bring the material used up to my desired delivery resolution.  

    It'll save you loads of drive space and your CPU won't have to work as hard when you're doing the cutting.  

    Food for thought, one hour of footage imported at DNx145 is going to require about 63GB.  The same hour at DV25 uses about 13GB.  That's a 50GB difference per hour, that can be a huge factor depending on how much footage you have, etc.    

    Kenton VanNatten | Avid Editor (for hire)

    "I am not obsessed... I'm detail-oriented"

  • Sun, Jun 24 2012 12:09 AM In reply to

    • Sibz
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on Mon, Aug 22 2011
    • Posts 6
    • Points 90

    Re: Avid Media Composer 5.5 Import and Export codecs/resolutions

    Thanks for the tips. By the way I have another option called AVC Intra 100 MXF, does that have anything to do with AVCHD files/Would I benefit from importing to that resolution? Thanks.

  • Sun, Jun 24 2012 5:48 AM In reply to

    Re: Avid Media Composer 5.5 Import and Export codecs/resolutions

    Sibz:
    AVC Intra 100 MXF, does that have anything to do with AVCHD files/Would I benefit from importing to that resolution

    No and no.

     

    What is the difference between AVC-Intra and AVCHD?

    While AVCHD and AVC-Intra are both H.264 compliant codecs, they are very different. AVC-Intra is a professional intra- frame codec with bit rates of 50 and 100Mb/s, utilizing the High 10 Intra and High 422 Intra profiles of H.264 respectively. AVC Intra 100 offers professionals mastering quality video for the highest level of HD production, while AVC-Intra 50 provides video quality similar to that of DVCPRO HD, but at half the bit rate, a plus for news and bandwidth efficient requirements. AVCHD is a consumer high definition (HD) digital video camera recorder format announced jointly by Panasonic, Sony, Canon and others. AVCHD is a long GOP H.264 implementation designed for less demanding prosumer and consumer applications.

     

    AVC-Intra 100 is used with Avid in some broadcast facilities that are completely set up around an end-to-end AVC-Intra workflow.

    Media Composer /w Symphony option | PT-HD | Win7Pro64 HP | OSX MBP | ISIS5000 | Nitris DX | Artist Mix & Transport & Color | AJA T-Tap | Decklink... [view my complete system specs]
  • Sun, Jun 24 2012 3:32 PM In reply to

    • Sibz
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on Mon, Aug 22 2011
    • Posts 6
    • Points 90

    Re: Avid Media Composer 5.5 Import and Export codecs/resolutions

    Ok, great! I'm glad I know which formats to use now, because before I would've had no idea, (I may have even exported my final cut to SD)...so thanks for all the help! 

  • Sun, Jun 24 2012 6:20 PM In reply to

    Re: Avid Media Composer 5.5 Import and Export codecs/resolutions

    You're welcome. Happy editing!

    Media Composer /w Symphony option | PT-HD | Win7Pro64 HP | OSX MBP | ISIS5000 | Nitris DX | Artist Mix & Transport & Color | AJA T-Tap | Decklink... [view my complete system specs]
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