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B-Roll Mixdown File Format

Shaun Laframboise's picture
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 10/16/2011 - 2:40pm

Hey all,

 

  I shot a bunch of b-roll on my Canon T1i, and I want to go through it and save the best clips out of all the footage.

 

   I'm using sony vegas 11 and I'm curious as to what file format I should use to retain the highest quality.  The natie format that the files are in is .mov.  I shot in 1280x720.

 

   I've tried a few formats, but all of them seem to slightly degrade the footage.  Any suggestions on which file format to use, as well as any other relevant settings related to that format.

 

  Thanks so much for you help on this!


chuckzootz's picture
Last seen: 1 year 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/07/2012 - 7:16pm

Since you are using Vegas Pro I would recomend saving them as MPG-2 files, I've beenusing Vegas Pro since version 9 and Mpg -2 files are not compressed too much .MOV files are Mpg-4,

more compressed.. I find that I have to use verious tools in Vegas, Brightness and Contrast, Saturation Adjustment, and Sharpness, to get my videos to the level I want them.


Jack Wolcott's picture
Last seen: 10 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 01/02/2008 - 11:51pm
Plus Member

I\ve been using Vegas Video since version 4.0; I currently use vers. 8.0 because of its stability. Vers. 12 looks like a winner so far and I imagine I'll eventually upgrade to it.

 

While I agree entirely with Chuckzootz, I suggest you try this work flow for best results:

 

1. Ingest your video. You should be able to bring .MOV files directly onto the timeline.,

2. Select "Black & White" from the FX tool set and take out all the color from the picture.

3. Turn on the Waveform Monitor and add "Levels" to the FX chain (the bar at the top of the FX window should show "B&W" with a check next to it, followed by "Levels.)

4. Using the Waveform Monitor, bring your whites up to 100 and pull your blacks down to 7. Tweak as necessary, staying within this range.

5. Delete the "Black and White" FX from the FX chain and close the Waveform Monitor (or move it out of the way.)

6. Now that you've set the low and high levels correctly you can go ahead and use the tools suggested by Chuckzootz.

 

One word of caution: Brightness and Contrast, a very powerful tool, effects the entire picture; in other words, if you use Brightness, everything in the picture becomes brighter. So it's not an effective tool if you only to lighten the sky and keep the brightness of faces the same. Before using B&C I'd go back to "Levels" and my Waveform Monitor and try increasing the gain, then tweaking the white and black levels. Trial and error and your monitor will get you to where you want to go.

 


Shaun Laframboise's picture
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 10/16/2011 - 2:40pm

I'd love to put the footage rigfht into vegas, but the .mov files from my iphone 4s don't seem to want to play nice with Vegas.  They either show up green in the timeline and/or won't even play.  Some play fine for a while.. then it gets glitchy.

 

As of now I've used oxeleon to convert them to mp4's as a 'direct stream copy', which doesn't seem to affect their quality.  It's a decent work around, but kind of annoying to have to do.  Jack, I'll try out what you mentioned, that's interesting as I've never heard that method.  I dig it and am looking forward to trying it out more.  


Shaun Laframboise's picture
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 10/16/2011 - 2:40pm

Jack can you explain further.. I"m trying to do what you say, but I'm not sure how you to read the waveform in the way you are explaining it.  I have the video scopes waveform monitor up and I'm making the top of the waveform reach 100 and the I'm making the bottom of the wave form reach down close to 0.  Is that what you are saying?  Or bring the bottom of the waveform up a tad.  Just want to be clear I'm doing it right.  Thanks!

 


chuckzootz's picture
Last seen: 1 year 3 weeks ago
Joined: 02/07/2012 - 7:16pm

I use vegas and when I tried to load a .mov file  I got a mesage that I did not have Quicktime installed on my computer, therefore Vegas couldn't work with the files I use a different tool to play

qiucktime file on my PC.


Shaun Laframboise's picture
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 10/16/2011 - 2:40pm

Yea, it may be quicktime issue, but i uninstalled and reinstalled that a few times.  It fixes it breifly then craps out again... grrr..    I'll try the mpg-2 format.


Shaun Laframboise's picture
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 10/16/2011 - 2:40pm

So I tried the mpg2 and maybe i'm doing something wrong, but these files are VERY small, and compressed.  What are the exact settings you suggest for MPG2?

 

My goal is to maintain the highest quality video during render as these will be used in other videos and I don't want to degrade the quality of this original (albiet touched up) footage.

 

Any help?


Shaun Laframboise's picture
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 10/16/2011 - 2:40pm

Well, I ended up using .avi uncompressed.  The saved files are larger than the originals, and I can't notice a difference, so hopefully that's ok.

 

If anyone has any ideas on this being good or bad, would love to hear them?  If you think doing it this way isn't good, let me know what I should do.