Format to Shoot to Combine New Footage with Old

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    • #44531


      I’m new to the photography arena and am working with someone this weekend on a documentary project. She has extensive footage that, according to my computer anyway, was shot years ago in 720×480 at 29.97 fps, 4:3, and standard def.

      My camcorder (Canon Vixia HF G10) will not allow me to shoot in 720×480–my choices are 1920×1080 or 1440×1080. Thoughts on which would be the better way to go?

      Portions of the video will likely eventually land on YouTube (which uses 16:9 resolution), websites, and a DVD.

      I don’t want to accentuate that the footage she has is a different size–I’d like the whole video to flow so the viewer doesn’t notice. A large portion (half or more) of the video will be using her old footage.

      I’m assuming I should shoot it at PF30 to match the frame rate of the old footage, but am lost as to the resolution size to use. I’ll be editing the project in either Adobe Premiere (if I can figure it out) or iMovie.

      Thank you for any thoughts.

    • #186497

      Shoot the largest signal you can (HD) and scale back in the editing program. Premiere allows you to open a new sequence for DVD size (your final product) i.e NTSC 16:9, in which you can drop the 4:3 perspective material – it will be black banded left and right. Or you can open a 4:3 sequence and center your new footage in that window and there will be no black bands.

    • #186498

      Thanks. I’ve realized after digging in more that the video is actually using 1.21 pixel aspect ratio and 480 x 720. So if I dropped it into 16:9 and changed the pixel aspect ratio to 1, could I make it 16:9 without the black bands? This is all so new to me.

    • #186499

      You could do this, however the change would make the video look stretched, so everything would be abnormally wide.

      One othe option is to choose the aspect, 4:3 or 16:9, and then scale the other to fit. This would either crop of the edges of the 16:9 video, or crop the top and bottom of the 4:3 video, depending on the aspect ratio chosen.

      I would scale the 16:9 video to the 4:3 frame, and just keep this in mind when you are framing the new shots.

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