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The AVCHD shots from my Panasonic setup are in m2ts format. Panasonic providessoftware, which makes it child’s play to get the files ‘as-is’ into a file on my computer. That way Istore and index them, for future use, via USB2.
However, mine are destined for DVD and to ensure compatibility, I use the very best-quality mpg2 codec possible to transcode the mt2s files to mpg2. I don’t like, much, the backward step from ‘progressive’ to ‘interlace’, but we cannot have everything we want, in this world, without compromises. Panasonic provides software to do this transcode for me, but the speedwith which it does this, made me a bit suspicious, so instead I go the ‘long-way-round’ and use the TMPGEnc ‘Video mastering Works 5’ in combination with ‘Main Concept’ codecs doing batches of 30 per night, as ‘overnighters’, while I am asleep in bed.
That gives excellent results, andimage degradation (over the original ‘transport stream’), is negigible.To get the best from AVCHD, as such, I have to contemplate a new computer. That is something I intend to resolve in few months time.
Incidentally, for advanced technical information regarding the AVCHD/H264/x264 and similar mpg4 formats, I know of no better source than the information put out by the Computer Science Dept. of Moscow State University.