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View Full Version : what settings do you generally use to give your anims to editors?



JML
03-01-2006, 03:15 PM
I just wondering if we are doing it right here.

how do you guys generally give NTSC footage to editors that
works in final cut or premiere ?
(widescreen NTSC ,with 1.2 aspect ratio)

my questions is probably more related to final cut, than LW.
so let's say I have an animation that needs to be in final cut.
I've rendered TGA sequences, how do I convert those into mov files (to use in final cut), and which settings do I use. should it be interlaced ? if yes how?, lower field, upper field first,etc...

right now i'm not sure what they do but they convert the footage into 8bit uncompress and some other settings, but when I see it on TV the antialiasing
looks bad compared to a computer screen.
it's like I render with medium antialiasing and it looks like it's only 2 pass on tv..

thanks a lot

jean marc

kopperdrake
03-01-2006, 03:39 PM
Hmm - I tend to give them my raw targa files, non-interlaced, for PAL use. I let them bring the sequence into whatever software they use then and it's up to them how much they cut and paste, whether they put interlaced on in that etc.

But that's just me :)

JML
03-01-2006, 03:43 PM
thanks for the info,

but that's what your editors do with your footage that I'm mostly curious to know.. :)

Wickster
03-02-2006, 12:30 AM
I've worked premiere pro and final cut pro hd. I don't think (or maye seen) a setting in premiere or FCP that allows you to load images sequences. FCP works best with Quicktime with a "DV" (digital video same with DVCams) compression. It gets a bit large but it ensure that they don't have to rerender the clips once they drop it on the timeline.

If you have Quicktime Pro ($29.99) you can easily convert your sequences to a Quicktime DV format. On premiere I think it's also the same. Instead you'll be using the AVI (video for windows) with a "DV" compression.

On the subject of interlacing though it's up to your clients. If its going to be on TV media I'm pretty sure they would want it interlaced, if its straight to DVD it could go either way.

Typycally the "Lower Fields" first on the interlace series. This is pretty mch what I hear about DVs, NTSCs and PALs.

kopperdrake
03-02-2006, 03:29 AM
You can import image sequences into Premiere, you load an image and the import box has a tick box saying 'footage' i think, or 'sequence', can't quite remember without being sat in frint of it :) Important thing is to right-click on the sequence once it's in and get its properties up to tell Premiere its frame rate and other useful stuff.

Skonk
03-02-2006, 03:29 AM
Both Premiere and Final Cut will quite happily load a still sequence.

SCS5
03-02-2006, 06:49 AM
Just about all NLE's accept image sequences. Just ask the editor what resolution they need and give them a 32 bit TGA sequence,or a 24 bit sequence with a separate alpha channel render.You NEVER want to give them an AVI,MOV. Etc. because your dealing with compression issues.

JML
03-02-2006, 07:21 AM
thanks for the infos everybody.

iconoclasty
03-02-2006, 08:43 AM
You NEVER want to give them an AVI,MOV. Etc. because your dealing with compression issues.
I generally render out a lossless AVI from my stills in After Effects so it's easier to deal with. I'm really not losing anything if I don't use compression on the AVI right?

Wickster
03-02-2006, 10:25 AM
You can import stills in Premiere and FCP
OK, there's something wrong with my copy of Premiere (Pro 1.5) then. Cause I can only load 1 frame a time...Any ideas how to solve this guys? Thanksin advance.

lardbros
03-02-2006, 03:20 PM
I still use Premiere 6 but to load image sequences you have to tick a small check box in the import file dialogue box. It says something like "Numbered Stills". Tick that and then choose the first frame of the sequence and import it... it will take all the rest with it and be ready to load into the timeline.

Sorry if i've patronised at all, i wasn't sure if the problem was you couldn't find the option, or just that it wasn't there!

WilliamVaughan
03-02-2006, 05:38 PM
We switched from TGA sequence to PNG and it works wonders. Much cmaller file sizes and the quality is still there.

jeremyhardin
03-02-2006, 05:53 PM
I edited this on FCP at Axis Animation:
http://www.axisanimation.com/sky_movie.htm

That said, FCP really doesn't treat image sequences too well. It's just not as stable as an .mov. If anything alters those image sequence files outside of FCP while FCP is open (which is common in a studio) FCP would crash.
So took QTPro and generated .mov files to 'reference' the image sequences and edit with those. Worked great, again, until you altered the image sequence in any way. Quicktime saw the change and messed up the movie, and FCP responded accordingly.

Well, we were editing 10-bit uncompressed for PAL. So after the compositing process with the frames, I had the compositing package output an image sequence, then load up the image sequence and quickly output that to a 10-bit uncompressed .mov using the free Blackjack codec.

We were then able to use the .mov files seamlessly and edit realtime at 10-bit uncompressed in realtime (for our edit).

Dexter2999
03-02-2006, 06:34 PM
In Premiere and AVID you load the file and there is a box "auto detect sequential" and it loads the files as clips.
I always use TGA 32 for my sequences. I often use PNG for still files. No particular reason for that they both preserve transparency. It is important to note that in AVID you need to invert the ALPHA as AVID and LW alpha channels are opposites.

The only editor I have seen that doesn't use some form of compression is SPEED RAZOR with the Toaster it edits Full Frames Uncompressed RTV files....but I hate that program it seems so counter intuitive.

jeremyhardin
03-02-2006, 06:58 PM
The only editor I have seen that doesn't use some form of compression is SPEED RAZOR with the Toaster it edits Full Frames Uncompressed RTV files....but I hate that program it seems so counter intuitive.
FCP is like most editors, in that you can choose your compression. I hope I didn't communicate otherwise.

But yeah, it's my favorite editor. It's just a shame that it doesn't handle image sequences that well. When I first found out, I just couldn't believe it. I kept trying different things, and sure enough you can bring them in, but you have to 'convince' FCP to take them and play them properly (still duration, etc). Or use QTPro to make reference movies. Better, so long as the frames don't change after the fact (as I said above).

jeremyhardin
03-02-2006, 06:59 PM
We switched from TGA sequence to PNG and it works wonders. Much cmaller file sizes and the quality is still there.

Interesting. I knew that LW handled PNGs better than TGAs, but I didn't know this could be the case outside of LW.

gaushell
03-02-2006, 07:16 PM
Hi Jeremy,

We provide video to others in a number of different ways. Not sure about final cut, but with Avid (we use Premiere Pro), we write out Avid mov files (which are compressed DV files) - you can download the codec from Avid.

We also send mini-DV tapes many times as we have a mini-dv deck. Premiere pro also has a native Dv-AVI file which works well.

Most folks don't like us sending them raw sequences. Though we render out from lightwave as sequences and import into Premiere.

Not sure that answers any of your questions - so feel free to contact me directly.

Keep files at .9 aspect 720x486. We typically write out as non-interlaced. If going to web we change to 640x480 at a 1.0 aspect ratio.

jeremyhardin
03-02-2006, 07:41 PM
hey Charles. I wasn't the one asking; I was attempting to contribute to answering.
But thanks! ;)

gaushell
03-02-2006, 07:46 PM
hey Charles. I wasn't the one asking; I was attempting to contribute to answering.
But thanks! ;)

Guess that is what I get for responding when half asleep. LOL

JML
03-02-2006, 08:37 PM
thanks a lot for the input, very interesting,

I will try PNG sequence for anims, TGA are fine but it takes so much space..

we were rendering widescreen ntsc at 24p, and when we were playing the animation on a plasma screen, some texture (brick) would flicker.. but it would not flicker on my computer screen.
(on the plasma, it looked like a moire pattern..)
our editor said that it could be because the antialiasing is set too low or something else...
I was asking him if I should render in LW with fields but he said that it would not help.
is that true?

I will try to render the animation with a slight motion blur and enhanced antialisaing to see if that helps it..

thanks

jeremyhardin
03-02-2006, 08:50 PM
for the moire pattern, do a quick vertical only gaussian blur to your output at about .75 pixels strength in comp to soften things a small bit. had to do that many times.

also, a quick suggestions for rendering NTSC or PAL widescreen:
render to 864 x 486 (for NTSC) or 1024 x 576 (for PAL) and convert to anamorphic pixel ration in Comp or LW.
This lets the artist see things properly in perspective, and it helps with soften details just a touch.

JML
03-03-2006, 06:54 AM
for the moire pattern, do a quick vertical only gaussian blur to your output at about .75 pixels strength in comp to soften things a small bit. had to do that many times.

also, a quick suggestions for rendering NTSC or PAL widescreen:
render to 864 x 486 (for NTSC) or 1024 x 576 (for PAL) and convert to anamorphic pixel ration in Comp or LW.
This lets the artist see things properly in perspective, and it helps with soften details just a touch.

I will try the blur trick,

at first we used to render 864x486 but then the new editor came and said it was a waste because he had to convert them into 720x486 1.2 anyway.
but you are saying that rendering 864x486 helps ?

jeremyhardin
03-03-2006, 08:01 AM
yeah, it's the same concept as rendering higher res images without AA and scaling down. LW's renderer can only cram so much detail into a pixel (even a 'wide' one). So scaling down preserves that detail a little better and cuts down ever so slightly on the moire and jaggie monsters.

Dexter2999
03-03-2006, 01:13 PM
Your editor may not be hip to the concept of square pixels vs. wide pixels.
http://www.creativecow.net/articles/gerard_rick/pixel_madness/

It's not something I mess with myself but then my level of excelence isn't that high. Besides I do my own editing....actually I am more of an editor that does a little graphics on the side.

Kuzey
03-03-2006, 04:33 PM
Wouldn't the delace filter help with that, I know after effects has one?

I'm probably wrong but there you go :D

Ps. I think it's called delace but I've only used the program for a few weeks. :D


Kuzey

cgbloke2004
03-03-2006, 10:40 PM
in my limited experience we just dumped the frames through After Effects an exported as lossless [uncompressed] MOV files [as that is what they usually ask for] - as said previsouly some people [or software] doesnt like messing with individual frames [though we've done that too, but not very often]
normally we just ask what they want, and we give them that [which usually ends up being uncompressed mov's [on a portable drive, or dvd's etc] or dumped to a deck [digibeta, etc] / minidv etc].

everyone seems happy and i've never had to re- export something for an editor..

for moires: blurring usually helped/motion blur or something AE helped too. rendering in fields was always a no-no as it seems to take twice as long to render and for not a huge amount of benefit. blurring was always the 'easy' fix for moiring..

for some reason, i dont like png's and one or two computers ive worked on dont like them either [one seems to take a refresh 'hit' when viewing a folder with loads of png's in them, and another crashed when there were png's in them]; so i tend to stick to tga's.

Ivan D. Young
03-05-2006, 01:37 AM
we use premiere pro at work for both live action and all cgi, student projects and use image sequences that are 24 bit PNG's. yeah you might have to render the timeline, but sequences work just fine. one added benefit is, that if your naming convention for the actual frames stays exactly the same, as new sequences are made, just swap out the frames in the folder and premiere uses the new frames and does not know the difference, again there might be some rendering but you can save needless time in updating by using this method. Also by using image sequences we elimanate one step along the way which saves a little time, especially when your crunching. because you don't have to compile a clip or quicktime. hey anyone that has not tried to work this way give it a try, it seems to help us at work and we like any bit of speed we can get.

tonybliss
03-05-2006, 06:07 AM
I work like that ... rendering/editing in sequences have many benifits as the one pointed out by ivan. Many a times i may have wanted to make changes to a section of frames and all i had to do was re-render them in lw or over the render farm and replace the files in the scene folder. It updates realtime in premiere pro.
I teach my guys to do this for the above reason and many others.
As for renders out for we use standard ntsc settings for television (some times we may multiply resolution by two for large screen displays IF necessary) for web we use 1.0 pix aspect ratio the resolution depends on what its going to be used for - gif sequence, flash, css/layers layout/animation. Usually for large multimedia displays the operators request 'pillar box' aspect ratio but we found that a good projector usually diplays the video out with standard ntsc settings.

good luck!!!