I posted this in a thread I started last year in the newbie forum, but it is probably a better fit here:
My new project is getting my old family movies my Dad shot on 8mm film transferred to digital., and am looking for any guidance there. The questions I have fall into two areas. Vendors and formats.
On the vendor side, has anyone here had a really good experience with a particular vendor, or, maybe more importantly, a bad one? It would be good to know who to stay away from. I am just now getting into this somewhat deeply, after casually researching the past year or so. I have contacted one particular company, Cinepost, as I have heard good things about them.
Cinepost did send me some samples of transfers using different codecs, those being what they call Motionjpeg1080i, DV, DVCPRO50, DVCPROHD, and ProResHD. Some worked better than others for me. I am on a windows machine, and needed to download and use quicktime for a lot of them. One I couldn't open at all, the DVCPROHD. The DVCPRO50 sample stretched 16x9 for me, which it shouldn't have, itshould have kept its 4x3 format.
Going in I assumed I would get files in either SD or HD format. I (probably very ignorantly) thought the HD might also be in m2t format, as that is what I was used to getting as an end product when I transfer my new HD files using HDVSplit. I really don't have a great understanding of transport streams and codecs and such.
As an experiment I put one of the samples that I had to use quicktime to view into Vegas and simply "processed" it, without changing/correcting anything. It did output in m2t format, but upon viewing it had changed it a bit it seemed. It improved the color somewhat it seemed, at least for my taste, but I couldn't tell if I lost any detail. I would probably need to put it up on a much larger display than my computer monitor to see if it indeed did.
So, does anyone have any thoughts on this? Suggestions on where to go, what kind of format I might want to see if I can get the transfers in? Whether running it through Vegas did indeed degrade it, even slightly? I learned a lot last time I posted here from many of you, and you really helped me. Hoping for maybe some more suggestions, insights and advice again.
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Last edited by Bruce/Fl; 7th Jul 2014 at 07:23. Reason: Edited to add link for Cinepost
Last edited by smrpix; 7th Jul 2014 at 07:47. Reason: duplicate post
MotionJPEG, DVCProHD and and ProRes are all professional formats. All are i-frame only and excellent sources for editing. DV and DVCPro50 are SD, so you may as well stay away from them these days.
ProRes and windows are not a good combination due to Apple's need to control the world. MotionJPEG tends towards very large files. Of all those options the DVCProHD is really probably the best. Try visiting the Panasonic site to get the proper codecs.
If the transfer stretches the 4:3 image across the entire 16:9 raster that's fine -- more image data to work with. Re-squeeze it in your NLE.
Your output format depends on how you are planning to view it. .mts, hdv mp4 are all long gop lossy formats perfectly suitable for viewing, but not what you want as a source.
I have my old super8's once more scanned some months ago:
- Scanned by laser
- Frame by frame
- Output: uncompressed avi abt. 1300x900 pixels
Results are superior compared to "old" methods.
I do not know if this is available in the US or elswhere but here is the website of the company who produces the device (Müller HM73). It's in Dutch but you could use Google translate and/or send them a mail about foreign addresses:
smrpix, thank you for your insights. I have tried various codecs and such I found via google searching, still no luck. I did find this humorous quote during my search: DVCPRO HD on windows? Dude, That has never worked. Don't know if that's entirely true or not, I have seen a "Raylight" but i'm looking for a process less costly.
Peter, that is intriguing, I will research it more. Could you possibly tell me what the unit of currency they are referencing is, so I can do a price conversion and comparison? I don't understand the symbol they use.
Thank you all.
Yes, "Pro" is a higher end version than "Studio"
There are external plugins you can look at from Raylight that enable native import of P2 formats including DVCPROHD
VLC should be able to play your samples
Quicktime can be problematic on PC's , many compatibility issues, green/black screen , the dreaded quicktime "Gamma Shift Bug". If another non MOV format is available that's usually a better choice on a PC
Been trying a few things, here is an update.
I took the file to a friend that has Vegas Pro 13, and it won't work on that either. Maybe I would need the Raylight in conjunction with it to work. Again, I'm not ready for that much of an investment at this point.
I have the VLC player and yes, sure enough, when I select it to open the file, it works. My problem is that I want my editing program to work with it, not just a program that can view it.
But it did at least tell me that the file itself is fine and viewable, so I can most likely rule out a corrupted file as the issue with my editing program.
So if DVC PROHD is off the table at this point, which it appears to be, any thoughts on what format will be the best source for me? Or should I possibly inquire as to what other options the vendor may supply me with? Is there a file type that would work well for sure with my tools that I should inquire about getting my transfers in? I'm not sure about their post production equipment and capabilities are, all I know is they use a Rank-Cintel scanner.
It is possible to re-encode these using other formats, lossless formats or near lossless formats, but it would save you time and effort if they gave you something that worked "out of the box"
If they offer cineform, that would be the high quality, high performing, wide compatibility "professional" codec of choice for Windows (not as compatible on a Mac) . Just like Prores is the codec of choice for pros for those very same reasons on a Mac.
On their webpage, they say they offer uncompressed 10bit AVI or MOV. That would be the absolute highest quality choice, as there are no compression losses. But storage requirements are large, and native editing of 1080 requires a raid-0 setup if you have HDD, or SDD - the I/O bandwidth is just too large for a single HDD . But this is what I would choose as an archival choice if this was important to me.
ProRes on Windows is not such a big deal. 720 pixels vertical resolution is enough for amateur 8 mm. I'm doing a scanning project now and converting PNG frame-by-frame output to ProRes 422(HQ) with ffmpeg. No problem editing it in Vegas with QuickTime installed. Easy to view in QuickTime Viewer or VLC.
But problem with Apple's official prores quicktime PC decoder, is it's single threaded, 32bit. The multithreaded 64bit Mac version absolutely flies in comparison. There is no PC love there. Try editing multiple layers of Prores in a big project in Vegas , compare editing that with cineform. It' s like a Ferrari vs. a shopping cart with a missing wheel