Latest post Mon, Mar 23 2009 8:30 PM by Rob Stowell. 3 replies.
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  • Sat, Mar 14 2009 1:45 PM

    generation loss?

    If you import a Quicktime DV .mov video file into Avid Free DV, edit it cuts only, one video track, no transitions, effects or color correction, and export it as a Quicktime DV .mov file with the same settings, is there any recompression/generation loss, or is the file just copied?  (Note: the Same as Source button in the export window of Free DV is grayed out).  I am interested in sharing work on a project that can be assembled later on one computer, and don't want to lose picture quality.

  • Sat, Mar 14 2009 5:18 PM In reply to

    Re: generation loss?


    It's not just copied.  Free DV makes media files out of it when you import it, and makes a new QT movie out of it when you export it.  It's been a long time since I used Free DV, but if I remember correctly you can limit the amount of compression when you export by selecting a codec like Animation.  Sorry I don't have better news, but it really wasn't designed for serious work; it was intended to be a taster. 

    If you want serious, you could download the free 14 day fully functional trial version of Media Composer.  If you can finish whatever you're doing in 2 weeks, it might work for you.

    good luck,

    Media Composer 2018.12.1 w/Symphony/SS/PF options, HP Envy 17t-j100 Quad Edition laptop, Windows 10 Pro, Intel Core i7 2.4GHz, 16 GB RAM, nVidia GeForce... [view my complete system specs]

    "There is hardly anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who only consider the price are this man's lawful prey."  - John Ruskin (1819-1900)


    Carl Amoscato | Freelance Film & Video Editor | London, UK

  • Sun, Mar 15 2009 12:38 PM In reply to

    Re: generation loss?

    It is my understanding that when you import a file with the proper specs for, say, Quicktime DV, and click on the option that retains the resolution of the source file, that the Avid doesn't recompress, but rewraps the file, chops it up into 2 GB pieces, and puts it into the OMFI MediaFiles folder.  I heard that even the Avid DV Codec is still regular DV with instructions on how to interpret stuff like color.  It seems to work the same (and the import options are the same) on the Media Composer I use at work, the Xpress DV I have at home, and the Free DV I am setting up for a friend to use for a personal project.


    However, I suspect that Free DV does recompress upon EXPORT.  I think I will experiment using scopes to look at exported files.


    Actually, Avid Free DV has its limitations like the number of audio and video tracks and transitions, but is still a very capable and stable editor.  And it uses the Avid interface, which is the best, especially some of the trim tools.  Apple's Final Cut is starting to creep into our workplace, but none of our editors WHO KNOW AVID want anything to do with it.  Final Cut is very powerful, but you often have to do things in complicated ways.  For some projects, Avid Free DV is actually easier to work with.  The project I want to set up Free DV for involves interviews done with two camcorders.  The two raw tapes will be synced in the timeline, then when that sequence is loaded in the footage monitor, subclips can be made and saved that retain both video tracks.  When the subclips are loaded into the timeline of the final sequence, the two video tracks are still in sync with the audio, and the unwanted camera angle can be edited out, and video tracks trimmed to overlap audio edits.  It is so much easier when using an Avid, even Free DV.

  • Mon, Mar 23 2009 8:30 PM In reply to

    • Rob Stowell
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Oct 13 2005
    • Christchurch, New Zealand
    • Posts 379
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    Re: generation loss?

    Hi Public Servant- pretty sure you're dead right about quality: dv is dv. The only "losses" occur when you start using transitions etc, and they are fairly acceptable in most cases anyway. The import and export options are the same as MC, except there's no QT Ref export. I've used the uncompressed "animation" codec, but for DV material, and what I'm doing, DV (effectively "same as source" as you can still choose the avid codec) has been fine.

    That sort of two-cam cutting is great- I do it a lot (a sort of primative multicam, though I don't use subclips, but usually do my cutting on the timeline). Totally agree about the avid workflow- with one or two minor exceptions, it's terrific- the best (at least since discreet's edit*). One of the reasons is there's almost always two- or three or four- different ways of acheiving the same result- flexible tools make an NLE. Free DV is no exception.

    Dell T5400 quad core xeon, 4 GBs ram, media on striped pair of 750MBs sata drives, nvidia 3700 gfx, MC 3 and Edius 5 with HDStorm. hp xw3200 1 gig ram... [view my complete system specs]

    kia ora- Rob

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