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exporting best quality with final cut


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#1 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 07:45 PM

Hi, not quite sure if this is simple/complicated/personal preference type of question or if it even belongs in student. But basically i recently bought a half decent hd camera (or i think decent considering my budget), and i was wondering about exporting the file as a finished product with final cut.

So far i've been expanding the size in options, trying framerates and bitspeed and have tried h.264 and hd 1080p 50mbps compressing. However the videos still dont seem to the high quality that i'd expect with hd footage. and i was wondering if i'm doing something wrong.

i'm using final cut pro 7, with canon hf100 camera. and using highest settings with the inbuilt camera settings; then im transferring the files straight from the SDHC to computer to final cut.


Any help/passing comments would be great.

Thanks in Advance

Andrzej
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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 11:46 PM

Chances are it's the camera itself. Now I'm not familiar with the Canon, but Canon cameras aren't exactly a CineAlta.
For export, try doing an Uncompressed output (go with 8 bit) which'll be very high quality and a huge file. I also like ProResHQ which is high enough quality for most projects.
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#3 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 20 January 2010 - 03:40 PM

Chances are it's the camera itself. Now I'm not familiar with the Canon, but Canon cameras aren't exactly a CineAlta.
For export, try doing an Uncompressed output (go with 8 bit) which'll be very high quality and a huge file. I also like ProResHQ which is high enough quality for most projects.



Well i'm not expecting blu ray feature film quality just crisp edges, however i altered the shape of the video input with FCP and i think this possibly affected the quality. But think i'll get PRHQ and check it out. thanks :)
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#4 Paulo Eduardo Uchoa

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Posted 20 January 2010 - 07:39 PM

I guess the reason why you are not happy with the results is because the camera is a consumer camera, which has it's limitation, due to that fact. After reading up on the camera specs, it looks like you will get the best quality when you set it to FXP (17 Mbps). And I'm guessing the color space is either 4:1:1 or 4:2:0, which is high compression to your color. And then you have to deal with the lens that is built in.

So you have a lot of things going against you with this camera. It will never match the quality of high end cameras. So with FCP, you will not see a difference in trying to render it out to a better codec. Stay native to whatever codec the camera records on. Try to see it like this, you may only five cars in a highway so it doesn't matter how many lanes you add if the traffic is low, they won't move any faster.
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#5 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 02:44 PM

I guess the reason why you are not happy with the results is because the camera is a consumer camera, which has it's limitation, due to that fact. After reading up on the camera specs, it looks like you will get the best quality when you set it to FXP (17 Mbps). And I'm guessing the color space is either 4:1:1 or 4:2:0, which is high compression to your color. And then you have to deal with the lens that is built in.

So you have a lot of things going against you with this camera. It will never match the quality of high end cameras. So with FCP, you will not see a difference in trying to render it out to a better codec. Stay native to whatever codec the camera records on. Try to see it like this, you may only five cars in a highway so it doesn't matter how many lanes you add if the traffic is low, they won't move any faster.



Ok, want to thank you both for your input. And i do understand I will never get top quality with consumer camera and the negative sides of my current, cheap camera. I just think i'm currently doing something to lower it even more. I mean i'd love a prosumer camera but my wallet can't afford this at the moment. But I will look into not altering the settings from camera to PC too much, and i think im going to look into a wide angle lens. I guess i'm lucky because im doing a fine art course, so quality of the videos if purely a personal and professional taste. And i would probably get a similar mark if i recorded the footage on a camera phone to a prosumer camera, if it didn't affect the concept and message i was trying to make with the piece of art.
I'm just interested because i would like to learn techniques for possible careers and i like trying to do the best i can with something. But thanks again for the help.



TLDR- i think im lowering the footage quality when i transfer/export; and understand i have a cheap low grade camera.


edit--> example of one of my movies that I recently made (using current camera),
View on Vimeo
(but thanks)

Edited by Andrzej Ford, 21 January 2010 - 02:46 PM.

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#6 David Rakoczy

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 03:21 PM

Andrzej,

I just watched "Unwitnessed" ... what the hell are you doing? :blink:
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#7 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 05:28 PM

Andrzej,

I just watched "Unwitnessed" ... what the hell are you doing? :blink:



"fine art", and yeah i'm trying to find a more fine-art'y forum similar to this, because this piece was appreciated by my tutors. and the kind of work i look at are people like Malcolm Le Grice, David Hall, Bill Viola, Bruce Nauman and i guess David Lynch.
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#8 David Rakoczy

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 05:40 PM

I worked on a short film with David Lynch (The Frenchman and the Cowboy) and it was nothing like what you produced. I guess I just don't get it... but hey, best of luck... maybe I should have eaten some 'shrooms' first :huh:

Hope you end up the best 'fine artist' of this century.

Good Luck!
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#9 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 05:48 PM

I worked on a short film with David Lynch (The Frenchman and the Cowboy) and it was nothing like what you produced. I guess I just don't get it... but hey, best of luck... maybe I should have eaten some 'shrooms' first :huh:

Hope you end up the best 'fine artist' of this century.

Good Luck!


Must of been awesome working with him, and he was the least relative artist to my work. sadly mine doesn't really fit on this website, because it more directly like martin arnold / nauman and i think they're very different to what everyone else is interested in on this site. And I'm still a student so i have a long way to go!

But anyway thanks for the comments, always appreciated.
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#10 David Rakoczy

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 05:54 PM

David Lynch is a kind, thoughtful man. I have a letter from him thanking me for my participation in his Film framed and hanging in my office. btw.. Fred Elmes was the DP.
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#11 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 22 January 2010 - 06:45 PM

Sadly i noticed 3 mistakes when i watched "unwitnessed" again on vimeo, and i forgot to note what settings i exported the video with and i keep getting a flaw in the videos with exporting and im going to link a screen of the flaw. and some notes of settings.



I think it has something to do with interlacing or not interlacing or deinterlacing or maybe fps.

anyway, here they are.
Screen_shot_2010_01_22_at_23.37.13.png
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#12 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 22 January 2010 - 06:50 PM

Screen_shot_2010_01_22_at_23.41.04.jpg

sorry i messed up attachments, here's the flaw
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#13 John Sprung

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Posted 22 January 2010 - 07:08 PM

Yup, that's a great example of the interlace artifact known as "mouse teeth". The moral of the story is absolutely never never use interlace except in delivery dubs for customers who want it. Shoot and post progressive.





-- J.S.
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#14 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 22 January 2010 - 07:13 PM

Yup, that's a great example of the interlace artifact known as "mouse teeth". The moral of the story is absolutely never never use interlace except in delivery dubs for customers who want it. Shoot and post progressive.





-- J.S.



so when i go to size options in export, and the tick box option "Deinterlace source video", should i not tick it?
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#15 John Sprung

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Posted 22 January 2010 - 07:25 PM

If your camera original video is interlaced, you're stuck. The problem is things move between the time one field is shot and the next. Each field represents a different position of the guy and the apron. With progressive, all the lines in a frame represent the same instant in time.

Try running this test shot through several times, with every combination of check box options, and see if anything helps. The real solution is to shoot progressive and stay progressive.




-- J.S.
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#16 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 22 January 2010 - 07:28 PM

If your camera original video is interlaced, you're stuck. The problem is things move between the time one field is shot and the next. Each field represents a different position of the guy and the apron. With progressive, all the lines in a frame represent the same instant in time.

Try running this test shot through several times, with every combination of check box options, and see if anything helps. The real solution is to shoot progressive and stay progressive.




-- J.S.


ok cheers, yeah i'm going to go through variable testing and this time NOTE what it causes. And it doesnt help that i don't know if my film is progressive or not.
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#17 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 22 January 2010 - 11:50 PM

ok, so it's 5am (i'm not in the best of moods). and for some reason i didn't note down how i exported my previous video. which makes me want to end it all right now, but i guess the so called silver lining is the fact i now am trying to figure out the correct way to convert rather than just the first one that worked.
so i am going to ask a very idiotic and elongated question whilst providing as much information as possible.

I recorded with a canon hf100, 17mbps, frame rate 50i,

the raw file gives details of

- 1920 x 1080 dimension
- apple intermediate codec
- HD (1-1-1) color profile
- 2 audio channels
- and then varying bit rate of 90,000 to 98,000

the camera uses interlaced film and its a consumer camera etc etc etc, so it wont be best quality. however what i want is to just keep pretty much the quality of the video that i view via final cut slug viewer, and im fine with the quality obviously downgrading slightly with the exporting process.

I'm looking for hopefully the video being no larger than 800mb. However this is open to change, i just would like decent quality when viewing at 1280x720 (and yes i guess filming at 1980x1080 was a very amateur mistake, however i dont have the chance to reshoot).

And i was hoping someone would be kinda enough to help me with the exact information i need to fill in within the settings/size parameters of FCP export using quicktime conversion. I know this is probably a stupid, long and precise question. but i have spent the last 4 hours googling/youtubing answers with the patethic success of finally learning how to remove mouse teeth.
I think i am slowly and surely learning what each part of the video converting means, with interlacing and progressive - and the use of different codecs, however i feel like i've gone long enough with trying on my own and really need someone to help me out. sorry if any of this doesn't make sense or im repeating myself, but its 5am. and i cant sleep not knowing how to convert a video i spent so long to create.

tldr: desperate need of help with filling in/understanding the correct parameters for settings/size FCP quicktime conversion with above camera settings/type.

Edited by Andrzej Ford, 22 January 2010 - 11:51 PM.

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#18 Andrzej Ford

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 12:30 AM

ok, i think through not be able to go to sleep having given up i may have solved it. and sadly if i read into more depth what people had previously told me i wouldnt be up at this time.

i think only question i really have to ask now is, the video was filmed in - apple intermediate codec so i am taking the previous suggestions and staying native, however there isn't much help when it comes to staying native and deciding on exporting size?
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#19 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 23 January 2010 - 03:50 AM

Try exporting a Quicktime in the native format from FCP, then compress that file in Compressor with your web settings. Deinterlace before you export.

Forum member Chayse Irvin posted some of his Compressor settings awhile back on his "Chayse Irvin Demo Reel 2009" thread, you could try a search. He's sorta the forum's web compression guru.
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#20 David Desio

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Posted 29 January 2010 - 09:41 AM

you may have already done this but there are a few ways to deinterlace footage in your workflow.
1. you can go in the FCP effects folder and go to the folder called "video". There is a deinterlace filter in there.
2. bring your footage into apple color(included in FC studio's bundle) and while you are color correcting, (you are color correcting right?) you can click on a little check box that will deinterlace your footage.
3. when you export using QT conversion you can choose to deinterlace your footage

Hope this helps.

Dave
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