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DPX in the real world


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#1 Rolfe Klement

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 05:13 PM

Thought I would post some things I have had to go through recently with this...

A sequence in FCP actually plays in realtime of the sequence settings are set to YUV instead of 8 bit something. It seems that FCP has to render DPX files down and this causes jitters. Weird I know but when I changed to 10bit everything was so much faster!

If you see green lines all over any speed FX or any FX DPX clips in FCP - switch to YUV Sequence settings then render all out. It always seems to come back but do a render selection to view.

If you get solarized looking footage- like 500% - then reinstall Gluetools and make sure you have the latest version. The only way to remove software properly is to remove the .com files from preferences on a mac.

A Black Magic design Decklink HD extreme and extreme2 cards do not do 1080P - in any shape or form. If you read the documents very very carefully they support 1080Psf - which requires a full render out from Combustion etc to get to view 1080P footage. A 160GB DPX file render while a client waits can get a little awkward... The KONA3 cards do do 1080P - and that is why they cost more.

To check footage - a quick and easy set up for DPX is to set
DPX to linear - White point to 1023, Black point to 0 , ngamma to 1 and display to 1 - then tweak at your pleasure in other packages.

I have not found a way of creating a LUT in Color and using in Gluetools or FCP or Combustion - and getting it to work - but I haven't tried very hard.

Any change to FPS or TC work for DPX needs to be done in Gluetools cause FCP doesn't like it.

Quicktime seems to go funny (technical term) with DPX sometimes. I haven't figured it out yet but it seems to do with having multiple apps open that are looking at DPX footage. So if FCP and Combustion are both looking at DPX files (not even the same files) then rendering goes back to green weirdness or solarized (500%) footage.

I now build DPX sequences in FCP then render to uncompressed 10bit- quicktime then take into various systems (compressor, etc)

Before closing Combustion or FCP - close the DPX footage then open another quick project looking at another small folder - cause if you don't then the next time you open FCP or C it looks in the old folder and it takes about 9 min to understand the 160GB DPX sequence

Anyway - that is a quick summary of issues - but the footage looks great especially projected via HDMI to a Optomo projector

thanks

Rolfe
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#2 Chris Burke

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 06:01 PM

Thought I would post some things I have had to go through recently with this...

A sequence in FCP actually plays in realtime of the sequence settings are set to YUV instead of 8 bit something. It seems that FCP has to render DPX files down and this causes jitters. Weird I know but when I changed to 10bit everything was so much faster!

If you see green lines all over any speed FX or any FX DPX clips in FCP - switch to YUV Sequence settings then render all out. It always seems to come back but do a render selection to view.

If you get solarized looking footage- like 500% - then reinstall Gluetools and make sure you have the latest version. The only way to remove software properly is to remove the .com files from preferences on a mac.

A Black Magic design Decklink HD extreme and extreme2 cards do not do 1080P - in any shape or form. If you read the documents very very carefully they support 1080Psf - which requires a full render out from Combustion etc to get to view 1080P footage. A 160GB DPX file render while a client waits can get a little awkward... The KONA3 cards do do 1080P - and that is why they cost more.

To check footage - a quick and easy set up for DPX is to set
DPX to linear - White point to 1023, Black point to 0 , ngamma to 1 and display to 1 - then tweak at your pleasure in other packages.

I have not found a way of creating a LUT in Color and using in Gluetools or FCP or Combustion - and getting it to work - but I haven't tried very hard.

Any change to FPS or TC work for DPX needs to be done in Gluetools cause FCP doesn't like it.

Quicktime seems to go funny (technical term) with DPX sometimes. I haven't figured it out yet but it seems to do with having multiple apps open that are looking at DPX footage. So if FCP and Combustion are both looking at DPX files (not even the same files) then rendering goes back to green weirdness or solarized (500%) footage.

I now build DPX sequences in FCP then render to uncompressed 10bit- quicktime then take into various systems (compressor, etc)

Before closing Combustion or FCP - close the DPX footage then open another quick project looking at another small folder - cause if you don't then the next time you open FCP or C it looks in the old folder and it takes about 9 min to understand the 160GB DPX sequence

Anyway - that is a quick summary of issues - but the footage looks great especially projected via HDMI to a Optomo projector

thanks

Rolfe



thanks for a very informative post. I suspect it will all get a bit easier in the near future as many more people are using dpx files all the time. I know I am and really appreciate the primer you have provided.

chris
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#3 Glen Alexander

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 07:02 PM

Thought I would post some things I have had to go through recently with this...

A sequence in FCP actually plays in realtime of the sequence settings are set to YUV instead of 8 bit something. It seems that FCP has to render DPX files down and this causes jitters. Weird I know but when I changed to 10bit everything was so much faster!

If you see green lines all over any speed FX or any FX DPX clips in FCP - switch to YUV Sequence settings then render all out. It always seems to come back but do a render selection to view.

If you get solarized looking footage- like 500% - then reinstall Gluetools and make sure you have the latest version. The only way to remove software properly is to remove the .com files from preferences on a mac.

A Black Magic design Decklink HD extreme and extreme2 cards do not do 1080P - in any shape or form. If you read the documents very very carefully they support 1080Psf - which requires a full render out from Combustion etc to get to view 1080P footage. A 160GB DPX file render while a client waits can get a little awkward... The KONA3 cards do do 1080P - and that is why they cost more.

Quicktime seems to go funny (technical term) with DPX sometimes. I haven't figured it out yet but it seems to do with having multiple apps open that are looking at DPX footage. So if FCP and Combustion are both looking at DPX files (not even the same files) then rendering goes back to green weirdness or solarized (500%) footage.


These all sound like you have multiple conflicting codecs installed and the apps do not pick the correct ones. Maybe try getting rid off all codecs except you have to have. If you have black magic codec, you do not need the apple qt lib installed. Check sys settings and examine which codecs are being processed.

Edited by Glen Alexander, 30 May 2008 - 07:03 PM.

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#4 Rolfe Klement

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Posted 30 June 2008 - 06:18 AM

More...

So the best way to deal with the DPX in the 3 projects I have just done in FCP is

  • Do an edit in FCP with the DPX files
  • Then you need to check all the clip speeds are constant
  • you only have the minimum number of video tracks
  • Try and keep any fades to a minimum
  • First Send to COLOR
  • Grade - you can assign user shapes to trackers in Color - I never knew this until recently and it fixes 85% of issues
  • Save the project as an archive (just in case)
  • Render all the clips in Color
  • Send back to FCP

Check for issues - any transitions you have will show with an error cause FCP sends the in and out points to color and there is no handle on either side to expand any fades or dissolves etc.
Create another Seq and add in transitions then remove transition but roll out in either direction on both clips
Send to color and grade - bring back in and manually move to timeline in main FCP project

Then send to shake or Combustion etc for SFX - make sure it doesn't convert to mov but stays in DPX format - seems weird this

Then all back out and render

I am still not 100% sure how to render out DPX from FCP - unless it is within a mov wrapper - but even then I cannot find any DPX setting..

My 2 cents

thanks

Rolfe
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#5 Rolfe Klement

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Posted 10 July 2008 - 11:45 PM

So some new issues that I have been dealing with.

  • When sending footage between FCp and Shake it seems to "sometimes" send the rendered proxy (so if you have a 200Gb DPX seq) and send a clip to shake - it comes in some weird QT format and not DPX.
  • Shake often sends the clip back in a low quality version - you need to go into globals and check the output format.
  • Shake and sometimes color seem to slightly change the height and width of the DPX file - this seems to happen if you use the aspect ratio import tools within gluetools.
  • Shake or FCP - not sure which seems to do something weird to the interlacing on some shots. I recommend making sure the shake pipe has a de-interlace action at the beginning and at the end - also double check Global outputs.
  • Another issue - I mentioned this before - Exporting DPX is actually easy from FCP. Use QT conversion - choose DPX. The problem is when you try open the DPX files in Nuke or Combustion - it doesn't allow you to open them. FCP and QT will open them. NUke and C etc will open the original DPX but not the rendered ones. Not sure what setting this is...

AND the biggest issue is "COLOR" when sending the final seq to color. You cannot have any speed effects or motion filters. It causes Color to loose the IN and OUT points - which means it tries to render 200GB DPX files for a 1 sec clip. We have some serious machines and I let this render overnight and it still didn't work in the morning..

Anyway - more trials and tribulations with DPX

thanks

Rolfe
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#6 Dan Goulder

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Posted 11 July 2008 - 10:37 AM

Another issue - I mentioned this before - Exporting DPX is actually easy from FCP. Use QT conversion - choose DPX. The problem is when you try open the DPX files in Nuke or Combustion - it doesn't allow you to open them. FCP and QT will open them. NUke and C etc will open the original DPX but not the rendered ones. Not sure what setting this is...

Are you able to render to uncompressed 4:4:4 RGB files? If so, have you definitely confirmed that nothing has been truncated? Also, if you've been able to render to these files, which app do you use for the rendering? (My understanding is that FCP will truncate 10-bit RGB to 8-bit RGB when rendering.)
Thanks.
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#7 Rolfe Klement

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Posted 11 July 2008 - 06:20 PM

More weirdness as I spend time on this.....

I have taken the exact same DPX source clip into FCP, Combustion, Shake and QT Pro and the footage resolution is showing up differently,

FCP, Combustion Show it as 720*576
Shake shows it as 720*486

In Shake - you have to manually change the FILEIN | FILEOUT to the right size. You also need to make sure float is enabled in bit depth.
The weird thing in FCP is if I take a DPX sequence and copy to the seq - the sequence settings seem too wide - about 5 pixels on each side.
Changing the sequence size with DPX files in FCP breaks FCP - there is a codec error that cannot be resolved even by reloading presets

Never ending issues - but getting better slowly...

thanks

Rolfe
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