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Which HD format?

Venzuelanhomedog's picture
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: 12/05/2008 - 7:44pm

I have a jvc miniDV camcorder, and recently I have been thinking about getting into the HD craze. I have an iMacwithIntel processors andFinal Cut Express 4 installed, so I'm pretty sure I can edit in almost any format. I was wondering which HD format, and how it is saved, is the best (meaning looking best)? File size is not really an issue, because I have a 500GB external HDD. Is hard drive, memory stick, or tape best? What about HDV, AVCHD, or some other one?


Rob Grauert's picture
Last seen: 7 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/16/2008 - 10:47pm

I was wondering which HD format, and how it is saved, is the best (meaning looking best)?

Which is best looking has to do with how compressed the codec is. More compressed means lower image quality, but it will take up less space too.AVCHD and HDV are more compressed than DVCPro HD and XDCam HD.

Also take note that image quality is more impacted by lighting. You can have the biggest most badass camera in the world, but if you don't have ample light, your image will still look like crap.

Is hard drive, memory stick, or tape best? What about HDV, AVCHD, or some other one?

I'd go with a memory stick like P2 or SxS, but it all depends on what you want to do. Recording to tape you don't have to sweat losing your footage--it's on tape. Memory sticks and hard drives don't record drop out, which you sometimes get with tape, and the capture stages are much faster than capturing tape. Cameras that record to just a memory stick have no moving parts inside, so theoretically nothing gets worn out.


EarlC's picture
Last seen: 5 months 14 min ago
Joined: 10/15/2008 - 1:15am
Plus Member Moderator

For sports and high action, extreme events, HD; for everything else there's AVCHD or HDV. Yeah, Rob, I've changed my tune. Next cameras will be either HV30s on the bottom end, with lights and Beachtek audio control and braces for a high quality mic, etc; or on the (MY) top end, the new Panasonic AG-HMC150 SD & SDHC recorder and no tape. I think perhaps FCP will do a decent job for me with the AVCHD format, but I still am concerned about all the youth sports events we produce. Will have to do a hands on and see how bad the motion stuff will be - swish pans, follows, and other things more prevalent in sports activities.


NewBirthProductions's picture
Last seen: 5 years 10 months ago
Joined: 10/24/2008 - 8:07pm

Editing HD on a I-Mac, I hope you have a lot of munchies when you start to render.

I once rendered a50 min clip of 720P on a mac mini G4 with 512 ram just for kicks. I stopped it after 3 days just wasn't worth it.


Venzuelanhomedog's picture
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: 12/05/2008 - 7:44pm

well duh tht would take a while..

i have one of the new imacs with 1 gig of ram.. i prob will buy more if i get an hd camera


EarlC's picture
Last seen: 5 months 14 min ago
Joined: 10/15/2008 - 1:15am
Plus Member Moderator

What's the max ram the iMacs take now, 4Gig? You could likely accomplish something good if you stick primarily with cuts only editing techniques.



EarlC's picture
Last seen: 5 months 14 min ago
Joined: 10/15/2008 - 1:15am
Plus Member Moderator

Well, the more editing/rendering (effects, layers, etc.) you do the more bogged down your creative drive is going to get using a limited system, but like building a house with a hammer and a hand-saw instead of a crew, power tools and assorted other materials and resources, you can do it, just takes longer - and you can't depend on creative drive to push you in the right direction because there's too much wait. You'll have to plan your projects, and do some serious rethinking regarding use of much more than cuts only story telling. Not that THAT is all bad, it remains among the basic tennents of production in the business.



NormanWillis's picture
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: 12/08/2008 - 5:56am

Hello.

I also havea camcorder/codecquestion, if you don't mind.

I plan to record usinga Sony HDR-FX1 (HDV) with three point lighting. I then plan to feed the tape into the computer usinga SonyHCR-HC1 (also HDV), so I do not have to dismount the big camera from the teleprompter tripod. I am hoping to edit in Sony Vegas 8.0.

I have a 3.0GHz Pentium D. Do the uncompression programs like NeoHDmake it easier for Vegas to handle the footage? Or is Vegas able to handle HDV from Sony camcorders without a problem?

I do not mind decompressing, as disk space is not a concern.

Thank you,

Norman


brandon0409's picture
Last seen: 8 years 3 months ago
Joined: 05/31/2006 - 12:21pm

One decompression side of things I can't help. But will give you a word of caution.

If you record something on one camcorder then take the tape to a different camcorder to download to the computer, be ready for the the captured footage be choppy. Not 100 % of the time but much of the time the capturing device with do something just a bit differently and only that cam can read it correctly.

I recently bought a camcorder soley to capture the footage to the computer so I wouldn't wear my heads out. Unfortunately the footage looked (and more importantly) sounded like crap. Then when I put it back in the original cam it worked fine.

I finally just took the camera back to the store.

Just be aware this may happen.


Rob Grauert's picture
Last seen: 7 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/16/2008 - 10:47pm

Yea, "decompressing" is pointless. It doesn't do anything but give you larger files sizes. The reason it does not increase quality is because when you compress anything, you throw out information to achieve a smaller file size. Once data is thrown out, it can not be brought back. So don't bother "decompressing." All you will do is tax your hard drive and CPU.

Brandon, Your experience with using a different camcorder to capture is strange. Is this with HD tapes? Is it the HDV codec? I still shoot SD with a miniDV camcorder and I use a deck to capture. I've never had a problem. I would assume doing the same with HD would be fine as long as you stay in the same codec.


brandon0409's picture
Last seen: 8 years 3 months ago
Joined: 05/31/2006 - 12:21pm

I still shoot in SD. I use Sony DCRvx2100 to shoot. I tried a couple different cheap cameras (brand new $150) totransfer the tape to the computer so I would not wear out the heads.

Each different camera gave methe bad audio.

oh well.


NormanWillis's picture
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: 12/08/2008 - 5:56am

One decompression side of things I can't help. But will give you a word of caution. If you record something on one camcorder then take the tape to a different camcorder to download to the computer, be ready for the the captured footage be choppy. Not 100 % of the time but much of the time the capturing device with do something just a bit differently and only that cam can read it correctly. I recently bought a camcorder soley to capture the footage to the computer so I wouldn't wear my heads out. Unfortunately the footage looked (and more importantly) sounded like crap. Then when I put it back in the original cam it worked fine. I finally just took the camera back to the store. Just be aware this may happen.

Thanks Brandon. Good to know. Norman.


NormanWillis's picture
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: 12/08/2008 - 5:56am

Yea, "decompressing" is pointless. It doesn't do anything but give you larger files sizes. The reason it does not increase quality is because when you compress anything, you throw out information to achieve a smaller file size. Once data is thrown out, it can not be brought back. So don't bother "decompressing." All you will do is tax your hard drive and CPU. Brandon, Your experience with using a different camcorder to capture is strange. Is this with HD tapes? Is it the HDV codec? I still shoot SD with a miniDV camcorder and I use a deck to capture. I've never had a problem. I would assume doing the same with HD would be fine as long as you stay in the same codec.

I have a raft of stuff to wade through before I start shooting, and I'm still trying to figure out what's what, but when Ifinally get to film, I will try feeding thetape in using the old camera-switcheroo, and if that does not work I will have tomove the workstation to the camera.If this thread is still living at that point (hmmm) I willtry to let you know what happened. But in the mean time we will try it, and hope for the best!Thanks. Norman


icfilm's picture
Last seen: 4 years 9 months ago
Joined: 12/21/2009 - 3:02pm

I am new here. Just wondering if anyone has advice. I have always shot SD with a Panasonic dvx-100

and am now going to shoot HD with a Sony HD-1000. I am wondering what the best way to capture video

for editing would be. I edit on FCP 6.0. I don't want to wear out the heads on thecamera- but for now w/o

an HD deck I'll have to go straight from the camera to the computer. I have a powermac G5 with 4GB Ram and 750GB hard drive. Anyone who has advice would be welcome. I am also wondering about mic possibilities w/o an xlr input for this camera. If anyone shoots with this and has advice on either point I'd welcome it.

Thanks, Ilene


BTS
BTS's picture
Last seen: 8 years 7 months ago
Joined: 02/01/2006 - 7:09am

Interesting! So did I get some bum advice here?: http://videomaker.com/community/forums/topic/hdv-and-compression-editing-mpeg-2-files

If I film in HDV2, I should capture and edit in HDV2, correct? I know that de-compressing doesn't make sense, and I don't even think my camcorder (Sony HC5) lets me capture in anything but HDV2. Before I author in DVDit Pro, should I save my files as a different format?

Thanks!



wilqen's picture
Last seen: 4 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/19/2010 - 9:45am

This is my setup and it works great. i have a Sony HVR-Z1U Camcorder (Similar to yours) that shoots in HDV. I use a HVR-M25U deck to capture from tape to Vegas, without any problems, using Vegas' capture applet or cineform Neo HD for bigger projects. I was using Vegas 8, then 8.1, now 9. I edit in the mpeg format it is captured to, as long as I use only 1 or 2 tracks of video, if I need more, I convert to Cineform HD intermediate codec, do my stuff, then back to mpeg2 (HDV) for archiving to tape, render to DVD Architect mpg2 template for dvd, or go straight to blu-ray from the timeline if I don't need a menu. If I do, I can use both AVC or mpg2 Blu-ray templates for rendering and then burn in DVD Architect to Blu-ray. I love Vegas. It is very creative, and at the same time makes it simple to use. I encourage any Vegas user to go to the VASST site and purchase either their Vegas training books, or videos. By the way, they also have a couple of excellent books explaining HD, HDV, AVCHD, etc.