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View Full Version : Stars look great until Final Cut Pro



virtualcomposer
08-25-2008, 08:17 PM
How come my stars look great with motion blur and everything and then when I put it in final cut pro and Export it to the highest .mov or AVI file, they look like garbage? What happens is that the motion blur actually makes the stars appear and dissapear into the picture. What do I do?

Sarford
08-25-2008, 08:20 PM
rendering to field in FCP perhaps?

virtualcomposer
08-25-2008, 08:32 PM
I don't understand. You mean interlacing? I've deinterlaced it and made sure it was exported the exact same size as the import.

Sarford
08-25-2008, 08:45 PM
What do you mean you 'deinterlaced' it?

I take it it wasn't interlaced when comming from LW? How did it get interlaced, and also very importand, what methode did you use to deinterlace it?

Andrew March
08-26-2008, 06:04 AM
I think you're suffereing from the good old flickering stars problem, it's been around for ages.

3DGFXStudios
08-26-2008, 06:24 AM
I don't understand. You mean interlacing? I've deinterlaced it and made sure it was exported the exact same size as the import.

Deinterlaced your 3D renders? Don't do that. Maybe that is the problem. :)

virtualcomposer
08-27-2008, 10:03 AM
If I render it out without de-interlacing, then I see the good old television lines. I did noticed in FCP that there is an ODD or EVEN settings. I've heard about the odd being the best.

flakester
08-27-2008, 10:15 AM
You would only 'need' [depending on your chosen final delivery medium] to de-interlace your footage - if you rendered it out of LW with fields. Otherwise, just import it into FCP and carry on as normal.

Do you have an option to 'interpret footage as' or something similar in FCP? If so, remove the field options from it altogether.

Neither ODD first nor EVEN first are better than one another, they are used by choice for different media delivery platforms and standards.

Mind you, even some different rendering engines get that ar$e about face when it comes to the same delivery format.

If you did render out of LW with fields, try interpretting your footage inside FCP with the different field dominance and doing some small output tests.

flakester.

virtualcomposer
08-27-2008, 10:23 AM
Is there a way to render without fields from LW? I hate fields! I love the great HD look.

virtualcomposer
08-27-2008, 10:25 AM
I think you're suffereing from the good old flickering stars problem, it's been around for ages.

Hey Andrew,
How do the people in the film industry do their star fields without flickering? I know Battlestar Gallactica uses lightwave and their stars look great.

Scazzino
08-27-2008, 10:34 AM
Is there a way to render without fields from LW? I hate fields! I love the great HD look.

Sure, turn off field rendering on the Render Globals panel...

Sarford
08-27-2008, 11:35 AM
FCP only uses fields if you tell it so. If you choose NTSC or PAL in the Easy setup settings you'll get fields rendering. You can change that in the Audio/Video setup, where you can create a new Easy Setup,. In the Sequence Presets you can modify one of the presets to have the field dominance set to none, then use that new created preset in the Easy Setup.

At least, thats how I've done it in the past, but I'm not a real video buff. De-interlacing in FCP is rubish, all of its methodes are. For some good deinterlacing you'd better use Shake or any other Compositor with some good algorithms.

Best workflow though is to work progressivly as far as you can and interlace it only for delivery. It won't produce as good a quality as a total interlace workflow but it will keep your material viable for multiple output sources (field order can change depending out output format) and keep the headaches to a minimum.

zardoz
08-27-2008, 03:59 PM
I don't know anything about this problem but I read somewhere (I guess it was some article by gerardo) that the best way to do post work with stars is with FP soft and the renders in some FP format, like hdr or exr. This way you don't loose the brightness of the stars.

virtualcomposer
08-27-2008, 04:02 PM
can I do this with LW? Is there a setting for FP soft or is that a software program?

KurtF
08-27-2008, 04:31 PM
One guy I heard of wrote an expression to increase the stars brightness during panning motion (especially whip pans). Helps overcome the fade you get when the blur stretches them out.

zardoz
08-28-2008, 09:27 AM
oops sorry for the abbreviations...FP soft was for Floating point software and with this I was talking about doing the post in software like fusion which supports floating point image formats like hdr or exr. this way your footage has luminance information that exceeds the 255,255,255 of white and when you apply effects like blur or dof you don't loose the light information.

virtualcomposer
08-28-2008, 04:37 PM
How expensive is Fusion? I'm not made of gold, it's just stars. LOL

zardoz
08-28-2008, 05:35 PM
I guess it's a little expensive...
http://www.eyeonline.com/Web/EyeonWeb/Buying/PriceList.aspx

I never used it tough...I wish I could. I've used combustion but from what I've read I guess fusion is a lot better.

blindsided
08-29-2008, 05:32 AM
I use FCP quite a lot with Animations, and while i am know expert I have developed a few 'rules' that I find produce the best results.
Like all rules however, they are not always applicable, but r a good starting point.

These are settings i use when rendering for VIDEO/TV/BROADCAST MONITORS:

I set up my LW camera as PAL d1 Widescreen, 25fps
I use upper field rendering, and suitable AA, AS etc.
I Like to use a little motion blur.

Render out as a TARGA Image sequence.

Import TARGA sequence into after effects.

Before i do anything else....
RIGHT CLICK ON FOOTAGE IN AFTER EFFECTS CHOOSE INTERPRET FOOTAGE, MAKE SURE IT IS SET TO 25 fps, UPPER FIELD FIRST, AND d1 PAl 16/9 Pixel aspect ratio.

Then drag the footage into a Composition (or make a new comp with pal d1 widescreen preset), add any post effects etc, then add an adjustment layer on top of everything with directional blur set to 1.2 or 1.4 and direction set to vertical (0 degrees i think).

Then render out Using QUICK TIME either ANIMATION or NINE Compression settings, and making sure it is set to UPPER FIELD FIRST.

The Open FCP, choose easy set up, choose either 8bit or 10bit uncompressed set up.

Create a new sequence and make sure it is set to anamorphic, and that it is set to UPPER FIELD FiRST.

Import the QUICKTIME....Very Important..make sure that in the bin it is set to UPPER FIELD FIRST AND ANAMORPHIC, (for some reason FCP never imports my QTs with the settings i rendered tham at, and this is usually where any problems can be traced to, because if you drag it into your timeline, and then change the settings of the source clip in your bin, FCP doest not change the settings of the clip that you previously dragged on to a timeline!!)

Then drag the clip on to your timeline, and render.

This has worked great for me and i can vary the MB in LW depending on the project and look i am after. The vertical blur in After effects usually takes the edge off any interlace flicker, and although it looks a little soft on a computer monitor (which plays back progressive) looks great on broadcast)

THE IMPORTANT THING IS TO LOOK AT YOUR FINAL OUTPUT FIRST AND THEN WORK BACKWARD.
If the video is destined for the web or computer playback, field rendering will make it appear worse as will the vertical blur.

For something like stars which are very fine, if you were to set up a DV timeline in FCP, FCP re-renders to DV quality (about 25mbs i think) and throws out a lot of color info, and the quality is reduced, so it starts to look a bit pixely, throw a few color corrections on top and the noise and grain really starts to become a problem.


I hope this makes sense, i am not the best at explaining.

blindsided
08-29-2008, 06:46 AM
when i say 'NINE Compression' I mean 'NONE' !!

Sarford
08-29-2008, 09:04 AM
FCP re-renders to DV quality (about 25mbs i think) and throws out a lot of color info, and the quality is reduced, so it starts to look a bit pixely, throw a few color corrections on top and the noise and grain really starts to become a problem.

Just explaining a bit more about DV format. DV consists of two parts, the luminance part and the chroma part. The luminance part is the 'brightness' part so to speak, just black and white, in full resolution.
The chroma part is the color part of the signal. But to be able to put all this video information on a little tape, they made the chroma part HALF resolution. And to make matters worse, there is also jpeg compression aplied to that.

So this will give you a nice video signal full with color bleed and artefacts :D

dwburman
08-29-2008, 11:12 PM
Also, for DV NTSC your settings would be 29.97 Frames Perspective with Lower Fields.

If Apple still sells it, Shake is good deal at the reduced price ($500) at operates in floating point. Apple has discontinued development but the software still functions well.

wesball
08-30-2008, 12:26 AM
I use image maps of star backgrounds mapped to a giant sphere. It works great, no flickering. Also check that your window in FCP is 100%. If it has to scale your video, it often screws with the display of pixels appearing to be flickering.

virtualcomposer
08-30-2008, 11:55 PM
Hey Wesball,
Do you parent the stars to a sphere? If not, how do you do that?