Avid Xpress Pro?
Will Avid Xpress Pro capture and edit HV20 footage, including 24P?
Yes...and no. At least, it wasn't so cut and dried for me. I was not able to capture my HV20 footage directly into Avid. I don't know why, but it just wouldn't work. So I downloaded that wonderful free program, HDVSplit and it captures the raw HDV files from your HV20 with such ease and perfection that it put my multi-thousand dollar Avid editing package to shame. HDVSplit even immediately recognized my camera as an HV20. Sweet.
HDVSplit is one of those rare digital video applications that is so nicely designed that it's completely easy to use. Plug in your camera and turn it on. Open HDVSplit. Your camera should be recognized. Hit the "record" button on HDVSplit and it starts capturing to a folder you specify. Once you're done, you close HDVSplit and go to the folder you captured to. You'll see all your HDV files there. Now you can simply IMPORT those files into Avid Xpress (using File>Import). Note: I created a project in Avid that was 1080i_59.94fps_HDV. And you're good to go. From this point, Avid works really nicely for me, editing and dealing with the HV20 footage. You can make a "digital cut" from Avid back to your HV20 once you're finished editing too, so you can play a higher resolution cut on a HD TV (through your HV20) or you can burn a DVD (downrezzed to SD unless you already have a Blu-Ray burner).
Last edited by sean90291; 2007 June 25th at 09:10.
Thanks so much. Can I ask, does it work with 24P footage? And what do you about the pull down?
Thanks A LOT!
Apparently Avid will not give you pulldown removal when importing files. Only when capturing. And as I mentioned, I couldn't CAPTURE my HDV footage into Avid. So I've been working with the 1080i timeline. Remember, there are not that many advantages to removing the pulldown. The motion is still the same, because the HV20's footage was captured in 24p. So it looks like 24p and won't look any different to the naked eye whether you remove pulldown or not. That said, if you want to remove pulldown there is a sticky somewhere on HV20.com that talks about using various software to remove pulldown. I don't think it's worth it! Oh, Final Cut can remove pulldown via film import. Many Avid users are frustrated that Avid can't do the same. I'm sure it will do it eventually, though. In the meantime, 1) stay in 1080i, 2) use the lengthy pulldown process listed on this website, or 3) switch to Final Cut (yuck).
I actually also have Sony Vegas (am learning them both). I know there are some ways to remove the pulldown in Vegas or by using Cineform
s Neo product. But then the question is what's the best way to get the footage out of Vegas in and into Avid.
Thanks for your help!
Avid editing 60iHDV with HV20 24P mode footage
Sean- lot's of good advice there. Can I ask which camera mode you are using with your HV20? I need to decide whether to use the 24P mode or normal 60i. I too would like the relative simplicity of editing in an Avid XPro 60iHDV Project. I am wondering if after completion and output back to HDV tape, you have ever re-captured etc. to try pulldown removal to achieve a 24P QT or AVI file. If the pulldown removal works (I've had success with TMPGen 4.0) on HV20 24P-mode edited scenes, this seems like a good alternative to pre-processing raw HV20 footage into 24P and editing in an Avid 24P Project.
Originally Posted by sean90291
Okay, well a few things here. You can still use the the HV20's 24P footage in a 60i (actually 59.96) Avid timeline. So, you can import and add footage recorded in 24 or 60i on the HV20 to the same Avid timeline...because don't forget your HV20 24P footage IS actually 60i (when it's recorded to tape it's converted to 60i). It just looks 24P, which frankly, is perfect right there for most purposes. Who cares if it's no longer progressive. To the naked eye, it will generally look exactly the same, because the original footage was recorded at 24p before the camera converted it to 60i.
There are some advantages to turning your footage into progressive, e.g., when doing serious effects or when progressive is going to lend itself to other quality improvements. But otherwise, just stay in 60i. You can edit this on a 1080i/59.96 HDV timeline and mix the stuff shot at 24p and 60i without a problem. One other advantage to staying in 60i is that you can capture directly into Avid (I finally figured out how: you have to use the Canon HDV camera deck setting). But I don't think Avid will remove the pulldown--or at least I haven't figured out if it can yet.
If you absolutely must go true progressive, then use something like CineForm's Neo HDV to capture and extract the progressive footage from your HV20 60i footage. Neo HDV also allows for the extracted footage to be converted to .mov files which allows for easy, effective import to Avid. You would then be editing this footage on a 1080p/23.976 timeline.
Yes, I did an HDV digital cut back to the HV20's tape from a 1080i/59.96 HDV timeline and it worked beautifully.
Thanks, Sean. Thanks to this forum I just discovered a way to remove "random cadences" using an AE plugin so this is all getting easier- shoot HV20 in 24P, finish in 59.97HDV and make at QT. Then import to AE for pulldown removal and conversion to an avid-importable 23.976 QTfile. I guess I feel I need the conversion in order to get past my next hurdle- proper DVD output.
I didn't have all that much trouble capturing from HV20 into XProHD-- then again I only did one minute tests. I needed to hide Composer monitor in order to avoid error messages/aborts. I'm only on 5.2 for now, btw.
Perhaps it's better quality to remove pulldown from raw footage and edit in Avid at 24P, but I just don't know. If you learn that avid can do the pulldown directly, please share. Pre-rendering is pure pain.
When I tried exporting my HDV59.97 timeline with QTref- avid gave me some song and dance about GOPs, so I had to choose real Quicktime and pick a codec, so I went with the Animation- I need to know if that's the best quality or not.
I don't really understand the whole DNxHD codec thing- I am hoping that it compares favorably with the other products out there.
DNxHD compares more than favorably. It's an excellent finishing format, with indistinguishable loss of of quality for most people. I've read about folks who did film outs with DNxHD, and no one could tell the difference between the uncompressed footage printed to film and the DNxHD printed to film, so....
If you want to export a QT Reference file, you're right, Avid won't let you do that with HDV files. You have to transcode to DNxHD. It's pretty easy. But the way you're doing it works too. The best quality is obviously a QT Reference file. QT animation is the next best thing I suppose.
2007 July 12th, 15:14
I read your post with interest.
I looking into purchasing Avid Xpress Pro with Mojo.
I read the AVID is much more picky with Hardware configuration.
Do you have any tips you can past on, on hardware configurations?
2007 July 13th, 00:37
I love Avid, but it's complex softwaare capable of doing more than pretty much any other NLE package, and so it has way more to go wrong! That's why almost anybody will advise you to get a system that is 100% compatible and approved by Avid (the Avid website lists which PCs are certified and which components are certified). But the truth is many of us run Avid on non-certified systems. I do. But I went through a lot of trial and error and it might not be worth it. For sure get an nVidia graphics card. Each version of Xpress is certified for only a few graphics cards and drivers. It might work well with others...but it might not! So buyer beware. You could be in for some late night trouble shooting. But you could save some money. What's more important, your time or your money. And you might find in the end you end up paying more than if you'd just bought the right stuff in the first place. By buying a certified Dell or HP PC, you will save yourself a ton of headaches.
2007 July 13th, 02:21
Thanks for your insight.
Can you tell me which nVidia card you are using?
2007 July 13th, 05:50
OK Sean- here's where I lose my way. I capture my HV20 24P footage into XProHD at HDV 60i, then finish my edit but I need to know the very best quality to export into AE in order to remove pulldown in a 23.976 Comp. Is it indeed QT Animation or transcode using DNxHD? And after I transcode the Sequence, can I import that Avid file (MXF?) into my AE 23.976 Comp (to remove pulldown) and SHOULD I since AE at Render will also give me a choice of DNxHD codecs to use. My confusion has to do with applying DNxHD twice and if that becomes a problem in terms of picture quality. That's why I inuitively went for QT animation- but that was just a guess.
Originally Posted by sean90291
thanks for listening.
2007 July 13th, 08:25
Avid + HV20 setups aren't used widely enough to have definitive answers to this stuff yet. The HV20 is pretty new, and I try to search all over the place to get Avid +HV20 info, and it's not always easy to find. As for which is the best route for you to take here, you'll probably have to try both and decide! Just export a very short clip from DNxHD as a QTreference file, and then export a QT animation file from the untranscoded file and try both in AE to see which gives the best pulldown results. You may not see a difference even. I have a feeling the QT Reference file from DNxHD is going to be the best...but it's just a guess. AE can read/import all QuickTime files, so it doesn't matter that your file was generated by Avid in DNxHD. AE will import it. And then how you render it depends on what you want to do with it. If you want to re-import it to Avid, you're stuck with a QuickTime animation or AVI, pretty much, unless you buy Automatic Duck (which allows you to again export a QuickTime reference file).
2007 July 13th, 10:11
thanks again- I'm trying to sketch out a repeatable strategy and all this is very helpful. Most folks here I suspect I are married to their preferred editing software first, then HV20 comes along and the effort and mental energy are directed towards getting it to fit in. I'm no exception and as a longtime avid editor but having never posted an HDV or HD project I'm a newbie all over again.
As you suggest, I'm going to transcode a finished 60i HDV project and my next test will be to compare QTref from
that vs. QT Animation. I'm pleased with the rest of it: AE accepts either file in a 1920x1080 comp, that Obvious plugin seems to work well and allows tweaking (I don't think anything out there including Cineform provides that capability right now when processing edited "random cadence" footage) and the re-import to Avid at the new 23.976 framerate also works. The reason I question my workflow and the "double DNxHD-ing" is because my gut tells me that we are only supposed to apply it once. That's the info I'm looking for, but meantime I feel I can start shooting with HV20 in its 24P mode and have options ready for broadcast output or just DVD and HD-DVD.
re: AutoDuck- I don't think I need it unless it can save the import time it takes to transcode a one hour avid timeline- in other words, do I get what I wanted initially- a QTrefrence import into AE?
2007 July 14th, 00:15
another option of course is to use the Cineform Neo HDV program ($249) to do the pulldown on capture. Then you import into Avid and never have to leave Avid--all your footage is already progressive 23.976.
2007 July 14th, 05:04
Cineform HDV or NEO
Sean, are you using Cineform on XPro with HV20 24P stuff? I am curious how it's working for you (or anyone else).
I have the trial on my system and have read their pdf docs. What I don't quite get is the HV20 24P workflow at the $249 level. If the raw camera footage is sucessfully pulldown-removed to 24P by their capture utility, then which Avid Project format is best suited for import? I don't see any way to use a pulldown-removed-but-HDV-sized (1440x1080) 24P file in an Avid HDV project- there is no 24P HDV framerate*, right?
*with the possible exception of 50i HDV, once I run Cineform's 24P-25P Conversion feature (which I *think* is not done in RT at capture).
So, I guess that means I would need the $599 level product which is probably worth every penny as it is 10bit not 8bit and allows bringing the
HV20 into 1920x1080 24P Projects. I'm just not excited about all the pre-processing and render time involved in what is potentially going to be a series of multi-camera shoots. I need to learn more about Cineform, particularly if any Avid people are using their codec it instead of DNxHD.
2007 August 25th, 02:14
So you can use Cineform for pulldown removal, but choose to not use Cineform's codec?
Originally Posted by sean90291
Last edited by BobbyMurcerFan; 2007 August 25th at 02:19.
2007 August 29th, 01:49
Please ingore my above post.
Sean, if you go the CineForm to Xpress Pro route, you are compressing and decompressing twice (once with CineForm and once with DNxHD). That's because CineForm does not convert to QT, it uses a QT wrapper over the CineForm file. Now I realize that CineForm is probably the best codec out there and is visually lossless, but I think (but am not sure) that it's best to avoid using two codecs on a file.
Freddy, As for Neo HD, there are 1920, 10bit, 4:2:2 versions of DNxHD in Xpress Pro, so why spend the $600?
The real question seems to be is there a way to remove the pulldown w/o using CineForm (seems too expensive for just pulldown removal and adds an extra codec compressing and decompression step that's not needed) or AE?
Maybe TMPGEnc 4.0 XPress can do this? P.S. Apparently it does: http://eugenia.blogsome.com/2007/07/...-24f-pulldown/
But does it do a good job, and can the file be imported into Xpress Pro?
Last edited by BobbyMurcerFan; 2007 August 29th at 02:12.
2007 August 29th, 07:51
Bobby, I know that TMPGEnc Trial could make 24P files that imported in Avid XPro- I did have some trouble within avid in a 23.97 project and I forget exactly what it was- something to do with imported files and repeated 4th frames, but I wasn't using the latest version of XPro. Do some tests with the trial like I did. Also check out DVFilmaker- I'm told they'll be working closely with avid in near future. If Cineform mentioned avid on their webpage, I'd look closer at their proud product line, but I find that ommission worrisome. I also don't like their tiered pricing strategy it's a sign the bean counters are in charge.
2007 August 29th, 23:27
Actually, everything I know and have heard about CineForm is that they are an excellent and completely above-board company. While I think Neo may not be needed to do the pulldown removal for Avid, b/c the CineForm codec won't be used, I understand that it is an excellent product.
P.S. Thanks for the tip about DVFilm . Does DVFilmaker remove the HV-20's 24P pulldown? I know it deinterlaces 60i pretty well.
Last edited by BobbyMurcerFan; 2007 August 30th at 03:12.
2007 August 30th, 19:55
I'm not sure but I was impressed with Marcus who will answer the phone and explain it all, I'm sure.
Originally Posted by BobbyMurcerFan
2007 August 30th, 20:57
I have used DVFilmMaker for a while now to deinterlace SD 60i video and it works great for that.
The latest version is supposed to remove the HV20 24p pulldown, although I haven't tried it yet (in fact, I gave Marcus an HV20 24p video clip to fix a different issue and he used it to get the pulldown removal working).
I like that product for the excellent support as much as anything else.
2007 August 31st, 13:54
I have been trying DVFilm Maker for 24p pulldown removal on HV20 footage and it works quite well.
There is an additional BIG benefit I am seeing involving chroma, which I will post about on the Software page.
2007 September 26th, 07:48
I am curious about this Avid Deko product called Transcode
Seems like it *might* save time. Has anyone seen it in action?