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2K to 1080p workflow


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#1 Steve Zimmerman

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 09:11 PM

We are editing our film using full frame 2K file size (2048x1556) super 35mm film scans in Prores HQ. We are using a consumer 1080p HDTV for playback and broadcast monitoring.

At present we're stuck with a BM Intensity Pro card that caps out at 1920x1080, so the image gets squished on playback. It seems we have to resize to 1920x1080 for viewing/editing. Is AE best for this? We'd like to have a 1920x1080 timeline setting to compose to, moving the extended headroom around for hiding mics and such. Since the end result will be a commercial bluray.

What is the recommended workflow to maximize quality? Is it okay to first recompose/resize to 1080p in AE, and then back to FCP all the way through grading and then recompress again for the Bluray?

The current tools are FCP7, CS4 (AE), and Color.

Thanks for your help!

Steve Zimmerman

Edited by Steve Zimmerman, 28 August 2012 - 09:15 PM.

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#2 Steve Zimmerman

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 10:11 PM

To clarify:

1. Why does our TV monitor squish down the image when playing back when the timeline should only be outputting 1080p?

2. Using ProRes422, what is the best workflow to output to 16:9 Blu Ray with the software tools we have?

--We also have Toast 11.

Thanks,

Steve

Edited by Steve Zimmerman, 28 August 2012 - 10:13 PM.

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#3 Chris Burke

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 06:49 PM

Why does you monitor squeeze it?? Probably timeline settings, what is the sequence setting for your project? Like you said, your monitor is not going to display everything, so at some point you are making a decision on framing. In any case you can use color and final cut to do all you need to. Color can reframe to 1920 x 1080 with pillar box or not. AE may be better or faster so the choice is yours.
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#4 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 07:34 PM

The problem with this is that there's so many places to set things up, and I'm unlikely to think of them all. The basic fundamental issue is that you have 2048x1556 scans, which are nearly 1.3:1 and probably cover the full Academy or super-35 area, depending how you shot it, whereas to finish to 1920x1080 you need to determine a 1.78:1 frame. At some stage there has to be a decision made about which part of the scan you actually want to use as the final frame, which will inform whatever scaling or cropping you do to get it down to 1920x1080. Presumably you shot some sort of lineup chart so you know where the camera's viewfinder groundglass was, which will inform which part of the frame you intend to use.

How you get from what you have to what you need depends very much on what the postproduction pathway is. You mention grading but not what you're grading in, and it would be normal to fine-up the framing decision at that stage. It might be worthwhile to create offline (low-quality) versions of your full quality material and edit that, obviating Final Cut's machinations, then assemble the final version in your grading application. You will still need to solve the problem of viewing the 2K material at some point but that would then depend on what your grading app offers you in terms of viewing and output options.

As to the distorted pictures you're currently seeing, I concur that it's probably how you've got Final Cut set up. I'm not an FCP expert, so I'll leave that to more experienced hands, but you could be a bit more specific about exactly how it looks wrong (post photos of the display if in doubt). Is it trying to make the 1.3:1 2K scans fill the display, and stretching them to do so? Are bits being cropped off? How is your FCP project set up?

Either way, check you don't have any hardware conversion settings in the Intensity (which would look utterly horribly wrong for most of the settings an Intensity has), and that your TV isn't set up to force things to fit the display.

AE is highly unlikely to be the fastest way to rescale a whole feature, since you would probably be forced to create huge intermediate files. I suspect your grading application would be the place to do it (as well as to produce your other deliverables in SD and HD).

P
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