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View Full Version : Animation for Tv. Which settings ?



eso76
01-27-2004, 03:29 AM
Hi everyone.
I've been working at home on an animation that will be used on tv, as intro sequence for a news program.
I can render the animation in lightwave and edit in premiere pro, then record it to a DV through firewire, or export an avi file or image sequence to use at work (we use Canopus Dv Rex for editing here, by the way, and the problem is it won't open a video file encoded with anything different from its own internal codec, or an image sequence automatically, so i would have to import from dv tape).

What are the best settings to use ? What i did with my previous works was saving to an uncompressed avi file and then record it on DV, but all the animations i did haven't turned out as smooth as i wished for.
I have used motion blur, but haven't used field rendering thinking the video will have to be edited with premiere and (i guess ?)compressed at some point during the process of recording it to tape (maybe i'm wrong on this one, don't know) and the interlacing would become a mess.

So, to sum it up, what are the best settings to use when rendering clips that will have to be put together using premiere and then broadcasted on (PAL) tv ? I'm going for a sharp, smooth look, kind of like '50fps' (60 for ntsc) console games look on tv :)

Thanks in advance !

digimassa
01-27-2004, 05:44 AM
:cool: if you dont know nothing about TV it will be difficult to do this job, eg: you must be fix with words like aspect ratio, field order, frames and fields, legal colors etc etc.

So try to get some basic knowledge and if your Rex cannot handle sequences kick it away.

This question is similar to: "got my driving license yesterday, so please tell me shortly how to drive to win Indy":D

TSpyrison
01-27-2004, 07:12 AM
What equipment does the news studio use?
Beta, DVCpro?

Aegis
01-27-2004, 07:31 AM
Whilst Digimassa is correct in that it is a complex subject that should be researched, that doesn't help you much if you're already at the render stage on your project - here's a few pointers:

Field Rendering
is a method for doubling the playback rate of your animation - using PAL, instead of 25 FPS you'll get 50 "fields" per second. The correct setting in LightWave for PAL fielded animation is "Even First". Note that rendering fields in LightWave is different to making an animation fielded after it's been rendered (in Premiere for instance) - When LightWave creates fields they actually contain the inter-frame motion (which will incidentally increase your render times) - if you render 25 FPS non-fielded and later interlace it, it'll still just be 25 FPS only interlaced...

Rendering
ALWAYS render frames - never animations. Use 24bit or 32bit TGA's - this will give you a perfect uncompressed sequence for import into Premiere.

For D1 PAL I normally use Enhanced Low or (if my render-times aren't too bad) Enhanced Medium anti-aliasing. If you use motion blur "dithered" gives nicer results and the more anti-aliasing passes you use, the smoother the blur will be (don't go higher than Enhanced Medium unless you really have to though).

Output
You mention that your Canopus Dv Rex supports import of image sequences - why not just burn the images onto CD/DVD and import them straight in uncompressed?

digimassa
01-27-2004, 07:58 AM
:cool:
I didnt want to frustrate ESO;

what I mean is, he has to look for someone with knowledge to save this job, its not possible to seriously explain all important aspects in some short answerings. to work on PAL and NTSC isnt that easy, setting 25 or 30 fps, its also a matter of IRE, starting with black at 7,5 in NTSC and 0 in PAL, (if I remember right)

If you cannot handle all this and a lot more its a matter of big luck to get a tape according TV standards^^

Aegis
01-27-2004, 09:08 AM
He's working for PAL so IRE is 0 and he doesn't really have to worry about it. Legal video is an issue but presumably his editor will be knowledgable enough to check that...

That said, you'd be amazed at some of the work that goes to TV - I've done some work that was WAY oversaturated (client's request) I raised the issue but they were adamant that they wanted it that way :eek:

Titus
01-27-2004, 09:44 AM
.

eso76
01-27-2004, 09:51 AM
Originally posted by Aegis
Whilst Digimassa is correct in that it is a complex subject that should be researched, that doesn't help you much if you're already at the render stage on your project - here's a few pointers:

Well, i work for a local Tv (programming responsible and not really suited for that...thought i'd improve the television 'look' with what i'm best at: short animations and cg graphics). I am quite familiar with concepts like aspect ratio, frames, fields..just never heard about legal color, but that has never been a problem, really :)



is a method for doubling the playback rate of your animation - using PAL, instead of 25 FPS you'll get 50 "fields" per second. The correct setting in LightWave for PAL fielded animation is "Even First". Note that rendering fields in LightWave is different to making an animation fielded after it's been rendered (in Premiere for instance) - When LightWave creates fields they actually contain the inter-frame motion (which will incidentally increase your render times) - if you render 25 FPS non-fielded and later interlace it, it'll still just be 25 FPS only interlaced...

Yes, this is the kind of info i was looking for : ) I wasn't really asking 'how do i do that ?' :) I've produced short animations for a few of our advertisers, and the result was 'great' for them, just not entirely satisfying for me. Biggest concern was it always looked like it was 'skipping' frames, except for the latest animation i rendered, which looked quite smooth because i basically rendered 50FPS non-fielded (750 frames,30secs) and later edited to dv doubling the playback rate (resulting in 15secs interlaced). Actually I thought that doubling the playback rate in premiere would only skip half of the frames and interlace the remaining 25fps, but the result was actually very smooth,so i think it worked somehow.
Is this a common/correct procedure ?
Field rendering actually 'doubles' the frames per second, drawing 'inter-fields', but since i have to work with and edit these clips (i may also have to apply filters which would change the image geometry and vertical proportions..that would result in a mess with fielded frames, wouldn't it ?) is it better to actually render twice the amount of 'non-fielded' frames and have premiere or dv rex interlace them (doubling the playback rate/halving the duration) ?



If you use motion blur "dithered" gives nicer results


Really ? I would have never thought so, thanks for the advice.



You mention that your Canopus Dv Rex supports import of image sequences - why not just burn the images onto CD/DVD and import them straight in uncompressed?

It does import images, but i've been told by the people who use it at work that it doesn't detect if an image is part of a sequence so you'd have to manually import each frame and drag it onto the timeline. In fact i seriously doubt that's true, i think they just didn't find the way to do it.
I'll have to check myself i guess.
Thanks for the advices :)

Aegis
01-27-2004, 11:15 AM
Normally I wouldn't even consider rendering twice the amount of frames (most of my work is to very tight deadlines) but if you've got the time (and/or CPU grunt) to do that then that's probably the best solution.

There's a "Video Legalize" Image Filter plugin included with LightWave which may be of use to you (remember to click the "Set Defaults" button after you select PAL) - it works by reducing the saturation or luminance of pixels that excede "legal" TV standards. It can cause a rather grainy effect though so use with care - better to use it with the "Set to Black" option so you can see hot areas in the image and adjust the textures accordingly before you render.

Of course you could just wing it but then you risk being taken downtown by the Video Cops :D

Oh, and "Dithered" motion blur does look nicer but you can't render dithered with fields - it's one or the other...

eso76
01-27-2004, 02:02 PM
Originally posted by Aegis
Normally I wouldn't even consider rendering twice the amount of frames (most of my work is to very tight deadlines) but if you've got the time (and/or CPU grunt) to do that then that's probably the best solution.


Great, thanks : )
But doesn't field rendering one frame take almost as long as it would take to render 2 non-fielded frames ?
After all, when using field rendering, lightwave has to render 2 distinct frames anyway and only show even lines of the first and odds of the second in the same frame. Ok so maybe it only renders half the number of horizontal lines of each, but still that wouldn't save most of the computing..oh well, i don't know : )

smok3
01-27-2004, 03:35 PM
eso76, you are correct, one field is only one half the resolution, so basically you could render 50 fps half vertical resolution and then interlace the two in some editing app (not in lw, becouse the app has to support that to render the correct lines i imagine),

anyway most problems i had (with lw) were connected to poor antialiasing, so i guess one has to select a pretty high setting in lw.

p.s. you could easily render without fields, in a lot of cases it even looks better, kinda more like a film.
p.s.2. good stuff is if you can get your card to output to your tv set, as the picture does look completely different to computer monitor. (the connection doesnt have to be high quality, just to be used as a 2nd check)

(sorry for my messy english)

digimassa
01-27-2004, 04:18 PM
PERCEPTION rocks:D