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AVCHD in FCP-Questions?

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AVCHD in FCP-Questions?
I think I know the answer to this but here it goes.

I am about to upgrade my FX1s to Sony NX5Us.
FCP can obviously handle native editing HDV footage and my workflow has been painless thus far. I import HDV footage from MRC1K (I have been recording both tape and CF card), rewrap using ClipWrap. Change my sequence setting to render in ProResLT, then edit as needed. When finished I export as QT ProRes LT file and encode as needed for DVD in Compressor.

But, since I'm switching to totally tapeless now, I will be recording in AVCHD. FCP can't edit native AVCHD, thus the footage has to converted to an intermediate I-frame codec. I woudl use either ClipWrap to convert the files or FCP via Log and Transfer. My onlu concern with Log and Transfer is that FCP might not join spanned clips properly. Clipwrap lets you join spanned clips and it seems that it doesn't lose any data like audio of frames.

For those who are shooting AVCHD and editing in FCP, which is your preferred method. Due to file size I might have leaned towards AIC over ProRes. But he addition of ProResLT almost makes the file sizes even.

So basically it's this...

1. What's your workflow...
a. AVCHD footage and transcoded footage on main drive and AVCHD footage external backup.
b. AVCHD footage and transcoded footage on both main drive and external backup.

2. How do you capture footage into FCP, Log and Transfer or other encoder?

3. How do you join spanned clips, as one file or place on the timeline and edit as desired.

Before anyone says it, I know that there are other programs like Edius, Premiere, Vegas etc. that can edit native AVCHD footage. But most of those apps are PC only, and I made the switch to MAC. I do have bootcamp and Vegas 10. so I could edit natively in Vegas. But I prefer to keep my entire worflow on one operating system. And I really have grown to like FCP over Vegas. There are some things that Vegas is better at, like audio, but surprisingly I have found that FCP has more tools for me to edit with. I prefer DVD StudioPro to DVD Architect. And I can't encode DVDSP files on the PC side.

And yes I do, have Adobe products such as Photoshop etc. on the Mac side, but I don;t want to drop the money right now to upgrade to Premiere, and also have to learn another new program in Premiere.

Hopefully, the upcoming version of FCP will address some of my issues, like maybe native AVCHD editing. Come on Apple step up.

Michael

Video Cameras: (2) Sony NX5U
DSLR: Canon 550D
Lens: Canon 50mm 1.8, Tamron VC 17-50mm 2.8
Software: Sony Vegas, Final Cut Studio
Computer: MAC BABY! MacPro, MacBook Pro
Quote Reply
Re: [MLiebergot] AVCHD in FCP-Questions? In reply to

In Reply To
I think I know the answer to this but here it goes... Hopefully, the upcoming version of FCP will address some of my issues, like maybe native AVCHD editing. Come on Apple step up.


I have faith that you are going to find your answer in the next version of FCP. At the very least I would not invest in anything I didn't have to until the new FCP came out. When are you looking at purchasing your new cams?
_____________________________
Ron Priest - Louisville KY
Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Vimeo

Quote Reply
Re: [Ron Priest] AVCHD in FCP-Questions? In reply to
Ron,already bought ND5Us a week ago.

Regardless of what happens with fcp I decided. to go this route.

So if fcp can finally work with native avchd then great. If not then I convert to prores.

Michael

Video Cameras: (2) Sony NX5U
DSLR: Canon 550D
Lens: Canon 50mm 1.8, Tamron VC 17-50mm 2.8
Software: Sony Vegas, Final Cut Studio
Computer: MAC BABY! MacPro, MacBook Pro
Quote Reply
Re: [Ron Priest] AVCHD in FCP-Questions? In reply to
Sorry for the quick reply last night Ron, as it was late when I posted it.

As I said I did go the Sony NX5U route. Mainly for a few reasons.
1. I am moving on past tape, and liked the redundant recoding feature set on the NX5U (dual SD card slots + FMU SSD recorder). So I can record to card and have backup of 128GB SSD recorder.
2. Wanted to go video camera route and not DSLR route. I already have a DSLR that use for certain shots, but I have no desire to go full DSLR, as a video cam is still suited for most of my production work.
3. I am already heavily invested in Sony gear. Mainly a ton of batteries. So I wanted to stay Sony. I must say thougb I was tempted by the new Canon XF100. But the low light sensativity wasn't there compared to the NX5U. If I had the money I very well might have gone with the Canon XF300. As it's very good in low light and the XMF codec is good to work in. But the cost was too high.

As far as workflow, the main question I have is what frame rate to shoot in while editing in FCP.
Most of my work is still down converted for DVD distribution, or online distribution (which my online content is 720P 1280 x 720 30fps).

But if I edit in FCP for lets say a wedding, should I shoot in 1080 60i, 1080 30P, or 720P. I was figuring I would go with 720P for a smoother looking picture if ever apply slow motion, which I do here and there still mainly for pacing (75% is usually the max).

But after talking with someone last night who shoots with the NX5u, he surprisingly shoots in 1080 60i. I work in 60i now with HDV footage and deinterlace for DVD distribution. I figured going with 60P would eliminate the need to deinterlace and thus get an even cleaner image. He suggested that he never liked the look of 720P down converted for DVD. And found that 1080 60i worked the best for most formats.

The thing is he works in Premiere and not FCP. So I don't know if it's a NLE thing or a wrokflwo thing in general. As Mark Foley shoots on a NX5U at 720P and delivers SD DVDs and loves it. He's using Sony Vegas.

I currently edit in native HDV and export my timeline as ProRes LT, which I take into Compressor for DVD file creation.
But by going AVCHD I woudl already convert the native files to ProResLT for editing anyway. So there's no problem there for output and conversion.

The only thing I have to figure out is which format is best for shooting and DVD distribution.
Any ideas on that one?

If the next version of FCP does let us edit RAW AVCHD files naively like other apps (PreMiere, Vegas, Edius etc.) do, then this would eliminate the transcoding step. But I would still have to figure out, which format is best for BRD and DVD distribution.

Michael

Video Cameras: (2) Sony NX5U
DSLR: Canon 550D
Lens: Canon 50mm 1.8, Tamron VC 17-50mm 2.8
Software: Sony Vegas, Final Cut Studio
Computer: MAC BABY! MacPro, MacBook Pro
Quote Reply
Re: [MLiebergot] AVCHD in FCP-Questions? In reply to

In Reply To
I currently edit in native HDV and export my timeline as ProRes LT, which I take into Compressor for DVD file creation.
But by going AVCHD I woudl already convert the native files to ProResLT for editing anyway. So there's no problem there for output and conversion.

The only thing I have to figure out is which format is best for shooting and DVD distribution.
Any ideas on that one?

If the next version of FCP does let us edit RAW AVCHD files naively like other apps (PreMiere, Vegas, Edius etc.) do, then this would eliminate the transcoding step. But I would still have to figure out, which format is best for BRD and DVD distribution.


Sorry, can't help you out any with AVCHD, I'm still all tape myself. But I capture via firewire directly in ProRes 422 (not light) I edit in ProRes and I master out in ProRes then I import the ProRes QuickTime files into Compressor to encode my m2v files for DVD and my 264 files for Blu-ray to author in Enable. I use the Compress HD internal PCI card to compress my h.264 files in Compressor for Blu-ray.
_____________________________
Ron Priest - Louisville KY
Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Vimeo
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AVCHD in FCP-Questions?