Anamorphic video, camcorder, rendering, burning. So confused!

Discussion in 'Computers' started by CRyan, Jun 16, 2006.

  1. CRyan

    CRyan Screenwriter

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    OK. Here is the deal. I have a ne HDV High Def Camcorder. Now, I am not so concerned about the High def protion at this moment, because there is nothing I can actually burn that resolution to YET.

    I am using Adobe Premiere and Nero.

    So, I have been able to render (with Premiere) a High Def Anamorphic video at 720x480 YAY I was suprised Nero recognized the format.

    BUT, the resulting image is stretched verticaly as you would expect with an anamorphic image. So I have small black bars on the side and the image is stretched top to bottom. Nero recognizes it as 4:3 and burnes it this way - as a 4:3 image.

    So my question is how do I make it squeeze vertically to make it right? I dont really understand at this point is probably my problem. I know most DVD's are anamorphic, but what do i need to do to create this?
     
  2. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

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    720x480 is not high def. DVD pixels are not square. Almost all SD DVDs use 720x480, so it's no surprise that Nero accepted it.

    720x480 can represent either 4:3 or 16:9. There's just a a byte or two that says what the picture is supposed to be. Any MPEG player -- your computer or in a set-top DVD player -- will take that array of colored dots and stretch them to fit.

    When you play your 720x480 on a computer -- which has square pixels -- during the authoring process, the program either show the image pixel-for-pixel or it will stretch the image to what it is supposed to be (4:3 or 16:9). Both ways have their advantages.

    A pixel-for-pixel 16:9 720x480 image will appear tall/skinny. 4:3 will be fat/short.

    If you want to take HDV and burn it as SD, you need to make sure the project/encoder settings for each stage know that the material is HDV or 16:9. After taking the HDV frame and shrinking/squeezing it down to 720x480, the picture when viewed pixel-for-pixel will appear distorted, but in fact will be correct. As long as the MPEG encoder is told that the picture is 16:9, it will set the aspect ratio flag so that the player displays it correctly.
     
  3. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    The DVD authoring system also needs to recognize the anamorphic flag as well. The MPEG2 can be flagged for 16x9, but if the burning application doesn't see the flag, it will burn it as 4x3.

    I ran into this problem with a cheap authoring application. It didn't support 16x9 timelines, so I had to purchase a better program.
     
  4. CRyan

    CRyan Screenwriter

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    Thanks for the replies. I accidentally said Nero saw the high def 720x480 ratio. I meant to say 1440x1080. It was able to take and transcode it.

    Either way, I have burned so many variations now to test all aspects of encoding and burning that I have a pretty good handle on it now. I had to go out and purchase another program by Sony to handle the HDV stream.

    The $900 I dropped on Premiere 2.0 has proved worthless! I am sick about it as there is no resolution to the problem and tons of people are having it. And you guessed it - Cannot return software. It is a known bug with their media encoder that on many PC's will only render up to 7 minutes of video. Otherwise, you get a failed frame error and nothin'. What sucks is that my raw footage is MPEG2 and so I cannot even use Adobe to make the movie with its fantastic possibilities. As using Adobe to first render to AVI and then to DVD is crap. SD DV almost looks as good.

    But so far with this new program I am getting pretty good downconverted footage on DVD.
     
  5. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

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    Just curious: which one?
     
  6. CRyan

    CRyan Screenwriter

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    Visual Creation Studio Pro. Was $200 - now $129. Looks pretty good and so far it has as many funtions that actually used in Adobe. But I was just learning masks where this new program looks to fail miserably as expected at this price point. Also, Adobe is just easier and more intuitive.

    I would say the 7 minute render I am able to get out of Adobe looks marginally better than the Sony MainConcept. Adobe, unfortunately can only do DV AVI, Windows AVI, and Uncompressed AVI whithout being able to use the Media Encoder. Too bad as going to uncompressed AVI and then to MPEG2 for DVD is simply too time consuming and rendering multiple times is never going to be good.

    Plus the DVD authoring software with this Sony product is incredible. You can author a DVD with every feature you have ever seen on a commercial DVD. I cannot believe I was using Nero for so long - Dark ages in comparison.

    From mutliple angles, to audio tracks, to menu transitions - it rocks. I will never go back to Nero for video DVD production.

    Although, I really want this Adobe to get working.
     
  7. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

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    With Windows AVI, you can use lossless compression. With that or uncompressed, the quality will not be affected. It will be time (and space) consuming, though. It's too bad the native HDV in Premiere doesn't seem to work as advertised.
     

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