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Thread: The truth about TriCaster 2.0 and Final Cut Pro compatibility

  1. #31
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    This looks like what happens when a 720x486 file is squished into a 720x480 sequence. The fields get crushed into this same pattern. I'm not sure how all that works in PAL, changing the field order wouldn't help, but make sure that Final Cut isn't scaling your video down or up to fit your sequence.

    Kris

  2. #32
    www.UnityLivestream.com avpM2's Avatar
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    still proble

    Hi all,

    we still have the problem using the MPEG-2 Tricaster Files in FCP!

    As I wrote: we tried wo change upper and lower field, but doesn't effect.

    @kltv: we checked today the settings in our FCP sequence. We tried standard PAL settings and the Size from the MPEG-2 Tricaster Files, but we still had a bad quality Issue.

    @jonasc: did you solved your Problem?

    @Rich Deustachio: some recordings we made with the Tricaster we have to edit afterwards for our Clients, and we use FCP.

    Our Setup:
    Tricaster Broascast with 2.0
    Final Cut Studio 2 with Final CUt Pro 6.0.5 and
    QuickTime Pro 7.5.5 (249.13) and MPEG-2 Plug-in


    Any suggestions are welcome!
    Steve

  3. #33
    It's ALL about the light Paul Lara's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by avpM2 View Post
    Hi all,
    We still have the problem using the MPEG-2 Tricaster Files in FCP!
    Steve,
    Final Cut Pro is QuickTime native, and doesn't play well with a LOT of file formats.
    that said, Apple does offer a plug-in specifically for MPEG-2 compatibility. Have you tried installing Apple's MPEG-2 plug-in?

    Please let us know if this helps.
    Don't stream it - TriCast it!

  4. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by avpM2 View Post

    Our Setup:
    Tricaster Broascast with 2.0
    Final Cut Studio 2 with Final CUt Pro 6.0.5 and
    QuickTime Pro 7.5.5 (249.13) and MPEG-2 Plug-in
    ----------

  5. #35
    www.UnityLivestream.com avpM2's Avatar
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    @rally1: Thanks for the answer.

    @Paul: so far we tried all things listed here in this post.

    Any additional suggestions are welcome!
    Thx.
    Steve

  6. #36
    NewTek Engineering ACross's Avatar
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    I am coming to this post slightly late, so I do not want to cover ground that might have already been resolved to many people's satisfaction. If you do a google search for "import mpeg 2 files in fcp" (and similar terms) you can find solutions to many of the problems reported. Likewise, there is a crazy issue with how FCP reports file resolutions back to the user; rather than reporting the true file resolution it reports the resolution as-if it had square pixels, which many video files do not (search "final cut 640x480 instead of 720x480").

    With regards to file formats, there is somewhat of a mis-conception about MPEG that I have gone into on other threads; certainly when used in a high bit-rate setting with I-Frames only it is very much an editing format and has been (and is) used by numerous professional devices. Indeed, I was just out at CBS Sports in NY and it is their primary recording format as do almost all of the major networks. Do not confuse what we do with DVD files; we are DRAMATICALLY higher bit-rate.

    The above said, I think that there are two potential problems with our MPEG files. The first of those is frankly that the early releases of TC 2.0 had some bugs in them that resulted in lower quality than there should have been. All but one of these have been resolved in patches that can be downloaded from our web site (in there registered user section.) The second issue is that frankly we probably chose a bit-rate that might have been slightly to low. We are going to address the one known chroma bug and make a dramatic increase in bit-rate, while also provide some clever encoding tweaks to our encoder in a patch that is coming very soon.

    Finally, as an open question ... what file format WOULD work best. Our goal is to make moving between different NLEs and platforms as painless as possible. Here is the rough break-down as I see it :

    • AVI
      Pros : We can implement a custom codec, so quality can be somewhat higher (but really not that much ... SpeedHQ and our upcoming MPEG are almost identical in most ways).
      Cons : Does not work on Macs. On PCs other than the TC it requires custom code to be installed to play the files (which has historically caused our users a lot of grief.)
    • DV
      Pros : Very widely supported on all platforms.
      Cons : Quality is pretty bad (4:1:1 color sampling. Ugh.)
    • MOV (QuickTime)
      Pros : Works on Mac and PC. Most NLEs support this, although a separate installation is often required.
      Cons : There is no "default" codec that seems a reasonable choice that exists on both the PC and the Mac, that is high quality and performance. Real time performance of QT on a PC is a big problem; making it almost impossible to encode and write files to the hard drive on a TC when live. No 64 bit support.
    • MPEG-2
      Pros : Extensive compatibility: almost every NLE supports it in some way. Many computers can play them without codecs. Hardware devices (e.g. media drives, etc...) can play the files.
      Cons : ?Quality (Given the predominance of MPEG2 in professional broadcast facilities I find it more likely to believe that our bugs, or perception that MPEG2=DVD is part of the issue in many cases.) There is a "STUDIO profile" that has some nice features, but I do not believe any NLEs really support it.
    • MPEG4, AVC.HD
      Pros : Not many really. Maybe increased quality / bit-rate.
      Cons : Compatibility with many computers, NLEs is non existent. Probably quality is an issue.


    Are there any that I am missing ?

    Now obviously one solution is "support more than one of the above". That is clearly an option and one that will be considered for future products ... but out goal is to achieve a situation where someone can say "Hey ... here are the files we recorded on the TC in the live show" and hand them off to someone and they "just work." In many scenarios that I see TCs being used, at show time you have no idea who is going to edit it, or where, and on what system - often the files are handed off to the client, another department, etc...

    Personally I think high bit-rate MPEG2 comes the closest to doing this, but if there is a better option I really would love to explore it.

    Andrew

    ps. For any problems with MPEG2 in SD, they are all totally gone in HD. The pixels are 1/6th the size You get better compression ratios and better quality.
    Last edited by ACross; 02-12-2009 at 12:21 AM.

  7. #37
    www.UnityLivestream.com avpM2's Avatar
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    thanks Andrew for your post and the break-down about the recording format.
    I will follow your advice and will have a look with google search for "import mpeg 2 files in fcp".

    If it will finaly work to import and edit the recorded Tricaster MPEG-2 Files into FCP, I'm happy with this file format!

    greetings from germany...

    steve

  8. #38
    Registered User ted's Avatar
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    Andrew, great explanation of the pros and cons. Many of us miss the difficulties you deal with trying to please everyone.

    With that said, I don't think NewTek fully understands our daily existence. It IS about dealing with more than one format. We routinely deliver 3 different file types for each project. All from the final edited project though.

    As you so clearly stated, by trying to make a one size fits all magic format, you have to make more compromises with TriCaster's capabilities and how we can use it.
    Allowing at least a few options would open TC's capabilities for us end users no matter what we use to record, Edit or deliver.

    Again last week we had to record direct green screen on TriCaster. The resulting files we took into VT-SE for Chroma Key in post didn't have clean enough edges. There was too much blockiness around the talent. So then we took them into After Effects, but even its keyer wasn't giving us satisfactory results.

    I remember recording, editing and delivering everything on Beta SP. Great process and universal. Life isn't that simple any more, and we must be able to deal with it.
    I don't think NewTek can change the industry to a single option. I wish you could! It would make our life easier.

    I am confident more people would be better served by having more than a one size fits all solution. We have discussed this a lot, but as an end user, I feel very strongly about this.

    Now you get to decide on if and how to do it.
    Thanks for your discussion and information.
    Ted R. Ruiz Sr.
    Ad-Venture Video Productions
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    www.editbay.tv
    TriCasters, Most All Models
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  9. #39
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    Increasing the Number of Grins in One Fell Swoop!

    Quote Originally Posted by ted View Post
    Andrew, great explanation of the pros and cons. Many of us miss the difficulties you deal with trying to please everyone...
    I am confident more people would be better served by having more than a one size fits all solution. We have discussed this a lot, but as an end user, I feel very strongly about this.

    ...Now you get to decide on if and how to do it.
    Thanks for your discussion and information.


    Great response to Andrew's excellent expose' there, Ted.

    Thanks in advance, Andrew, for your earnest consideration of a few encode options, being made available for TriCaster users.

    Remember, as suggested some moons ago...

    You could have a codec update which would allow TriCaster units to default to -- er, the now-popular TriCaster system 2.0-flavored 4:2:0 MPEG2-Intra codec -- whilst giving the end-user the option of going into an "Advanced" mode perhaps every time the recording button is clicked while the CTRL key is depressed on the keyboard: A series of radio buttons could then be presented with the other 3 or 4 recording options such as 4:2:2 SpeedHQ and NT25, and whatever else you so may choose. (I'm greedy Ted, so I snuck in room for an additional one or two).

    You might do well to also enable all of NewTek's editors to be able to effectively deal with all the TriCaster Live Production and Edit Media codecs without any hitches, (via an update provisioning if needed), upon the varied NewTek editing platforms (including VT-EDIT in VT[4] systems, and SpeedEDIT-VT and SpeedEDIT standalone, if you please.

    Then you'll have hoardes of your loyal NewTek customers grinning ear to ear, with new ones jumping aboard because of that multi-format flexibility alone.
    :agree:

    In this manner or in some similar fashion perhaps, you'll get to have your cake (remember the "default MPEG2-I mode?) and we'll all be too happy to eat it, too).

    Last edited by Quiet1onTheSet; 02-13-2009 at 04:10 AM.

  10. #40
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    Hey Ted -- catch me up a little here -- what version TC do you use?
    Stephen Self
    Happy NewTekie Since 1998
    www.n-ventivetv.com

  11. #41
    We Make Effective FX! DiscreetFX's Avatar
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    We have no issues using Final Cut Studio with our TriCaster Pro FX or our VT[5] but we go from FCS to the TriCaster not the other way around. We like editing with SpeedEDIT/VT[5] instead of using FCS. We use the other programs included with FCS instead of Final Cut Pro. LiveType is an example of one of the programs we use in FCS. If editors that are used to FCS could start their work flow on Mac OS X then do final editing on VT[5], TriCaster or SpeedEDIT they will have a lot less problems. They need an excuse to edit the NewTek way vs the FCP way right?

    Last edited by DiscreetFX; 02-13-2009 at 10:49 AM.
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  12. #42
    Registered User ted's Avatar
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    We have the Broadcast version of TriCaster.
    Ted R. Ruiz Sr.
    Ad-Venture Video Productions
    Elite NewTek Dealer
    www.editbay.tv
    TriCasters, Most All Models
    Cameras-Mostly HVX 200's

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by ted View Post
    We have the Broadcast version of TriCaster.
    Upgraded since my absence, eh, Ted?

    N-i-i-ice.


    TriCaster STUDIO here...

  14. #44
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    Just joining in as I'm new to TriCaster, been using for 2 weeks now.
    I'm trying to simply edit the video on Final Cut Express (yes, was cheaper than Studio or Pro) in order to get video file that I can post to Web. Eventually, I want to be able to trim and burn multiple DVDs immediately after the event/concert/sermon, but I can deal with that later.

    I have the latest TriCaster Studio, Final Cut Express 4.0.1, I just installed the MPEG2 codec for QuickTime Pro.

    When I import the mpg files from the TriCaster to FCE, the properties show it to be a 720x404 resolution video. (I really don't care too much yet about this, audience is web and they have no idea what resolution it is). But the properties don't show any audio, only video. However Quicktime Pro will play the video with audio, actually before adding the MPEG2 codec. When I drag the video file in FCE to the Timeline, it shows a video track, but no audio track.

    I was able to successfully use the MPG after running through Quicktime or Streamclip or VisualHub to convert to AIC codec at DV resolution. Then FCE will import the resulting AIC codec file no problem and I can see both audio and video. The problem is that this takes a long time, too long if you want to hand out DVDs after a performance.

    There must be a simpler way to get FCE/FCP to import video from the TriCaster.

  15. #45
    www.UnityLivestream.com avpM2's Avatar
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    Tricaster - SDI - FCP

    Hi,

    as already posted, we also do have problems, using the MPEG-2 Tricaster Files afterwards in FCP.
    It is a long way to Copy over network to our FCP Mac, import, and then it is not working anyway at the moment.

    However, we are using the Tricaster Broadcast, and our new way to Edit and transfer the Files in a save way to to Final Cut Pro:
    Play the previously recorded Program-Out File in Tricaster with one DDR, have a connection established via SDI Out from Tricaster to SDI In on our FCP Mac and record the Files there.
    No time waste to try to get the File running inside FCP and now best quality in native Quicktime Format for editing in FCP...

    OK, not the way it should be and as a matter of course we would appreciate if there is a way in the future to use the Tricaster Files direct in FCP ...

    Steve

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