Latest post Sat, Feb 10 2018 8:13 PM by DStone. 14 replies.
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  • Thu, Feb 1 2018 11:36 PM

    • SR555
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    Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    So I built the project (all SD) 30i 16x9 720x486 (perhaps it should be changed to 864x486) and reformatted 4x3 clips within it along with 16x9 full frame clips, going to DVD in Adobe Media Encoder.

    When exporting (Avid DV50), it's letterboxing all of it, which creates two letterboxes.  

    I"ll run tests and figure out the right combination of settings.  Guessing it's outputting to 864x486 square pixel maybe. 

    Here's my question:  in your experience, has anyone had any trouble with different DVD players displaying this properly, and what is the best way to export for the best compatibility?  

    Thank you

    Avid Media Composer 7, Macbook Pro Retina, Mountain Lion [view my complete system specs]
  • Fri, Feb 2 2018 10:05 PM In reply to

    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    SR555:
    what is the best way to export for the best compatibility?
    DVD's require standardd NTSC file resolution. 720 by 486(?) or possibly 480(?). I am not an NTSC person. The display format is set by adding a 4:3 or 16:9 flag that tells the replay device the correct pixel aspect ratio display. 

    SR555:
    has anyone had any trouble with different DVD players displaying this properly,
    This can be an issue caused by the end user not having their DVD and TV settings correctly selected.  Diffent manufactures have a variety of ways of wether the DVD outputs an aspect ratio flag and whether the TV's input recognises the aspect ratio flag and then displays it correctly.

  • Sat, Feb 3 2018 4:31 PM In reply to

    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    The meg used for the DVD video needs to not be flagged 16:9

    So the content should be 720x480 not 16:9 flagged. (or not flagged as anamorphic)

    ACI Moderator. I'm not employed by Avid or work for them. I just do this in my spare time. Symphony V8.6 / 8.3.1 HP Z400 system [view my complete system specs]

     

    Broadcast & Post Production Consultant / Trainer  VET

     

    T 07581 201248 | E pat@vet.co.uk | W www.vet.co.uk |


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  • Sat, Feb 3 2018 8:30 PM In reply to

    • SR555
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    The tests I have done so far, no luck.  Went from avid native dimensions 720x486 (16x9), exported to quicktime DV50, one file 720x486 16x9, one file 720x486 4x3  (Haven't quite figured out the right way to approach the 486vs480 for DVD yet but that's another issue).  

    To Adobe Media Encoder, DVD Widescreen and regular, with every combination of 4x3, 16x9, and automatic.   All were squished.  Tested with both 4x3 and Widescreen menu from Toast.  (Encore did the same thing).

    The 4x3 content, instead of showing up as 4x3, is completely square.  Should show up in a 16x9 frame, 4x3 letterboxed.   

    The widescreen menus display properly.

     

    Avid Media Composer 7, Macbook Pro Retina, Mountain Lion [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Feb 5 2018 5:59 AM In reply to

    • SR555
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    >>The meg used for the DVD video needs to not be flagged 16:9

     

    So the content should be 720x480 not 16:9 flagged. (or not flagged as anamorphic)<<

    I did about 45 tests today with various combinations of straight out of Avid mov files, quicktime reference files, some to Adobe Media Encoder both widescreen, 4x3, and automatic, and some going to Squeeze. Mostly project dimensions of 720x480, and a few that were 864x480 jsut to see what would happen..  And one or two direct in squeeze.

    Only 4 out of 45 worked:  1) quicktime reference mixdowns sent to Squeeze with 16x9 square pixels checked, and two others that did make an mpeg2 (1out of Sorenson and 1 out of AME), but I was unable to replicate them in a second test - they were squished.

    I"m really baffled as to how it's nearly impossible to get a working export out of Avid. Not quite sure what to do next.  Is it me or is it Avid?  Maybe it's not flagging it properly?

    Here's what I don't understand.   The project is 720x486, 16x9 with some 4x3 reformatted content within.   On the way out, you tell Quicktime, hey, this is 16x9.   In the encoding program, you tell it, hey this is 16x9.   That should work, right?  It doesn't .So you do the alternative, and DON"T flag it as 16x9.  It doesn't work either. 

    Is a file where the source is 16x9 square pixels likely to have any DVD player problems?

    What am I doing wrong?   

    Avid Media Composer 7, Macbook Pro Retina, Mountain Lion [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Feb 5 2018 2:11 PM In reply to

    • DStone
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    Here's the workfflow I use:

    DVDs are 720x480, For 16x9 they need to be flagged as 16x9. The Avid project format should be set as 30i with an aspect ratio of 16x9. This will display your widescreen content correctly. For the 4x3 content, you should use FrameFlex to reformat them. Set the PAR for the source to 4x3 (ignore the fact that it's likely to set the image size to 1440x1080). In the FrameFlex box set the PAR to also be 4x3, and set the Reformat to Pillar/Letterbox. Do this for all of the 4x3 clips.

    Create your timeline. Export as QT Movie and in the Options use Same as Source. I check the Use Avid Codecs box (I don't know if that one really matters). Under Display Aspect Ratio use DV (720x480).

    I don't have Adobe Media Encoder, so here's the setup for Squeeze.

    Import the video. To display it correctly in Squeeze set the Aspect Ratio to 16x9 and leave Auto Cropping turned on. under Disc select DVD and choose (for either elementary or program streams) the Burn 16x9 option and add that to the project. In the project, double-click on whatever option you chose to open the options box.

    In the MPEG-2 options, use Unconstrained for the frame size. Set the bitrate and CBR/VBR as appropriate for the size of DVD you're making. Under Filters, uncheck everything. If you're going to use a separate DVD creation app. for making menus, then select the Publishing tab. You'll see a set of +- buttons. Select the - to remove the Burn to DVD option.

    Now squeeze the video. The final output will be a 720x480 elementary or program stream with the 16x9 bit set in the MPEG-2 header. There will not be any additional letterbox/pillarbox added. You'll have to figure out the settings for whatever burner software you're using to make sure it doesn't re-encode the video.

    Hope this helps.

    DIY quad core I7-4790K, 16Gb, NVidia GTX 970 4GB, Win 10 Pro, MC 8.x (generally the latest or the one just before), MC 7.x [view my complete system specs]

    Dave S.

  • Mon, Feb 5 2018 2:18 PM In reply to

    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    Sorry my mistake. If the source content is 16X9 and hasn't been pillarboxed to 4:3 then the resulting MPEG does need to be 16x9 flagged.

    ACI Moderator. I'm not employed by Avid or work for them. I just do this in my spare time. Symphony V8.6 / 8.3.1 HP Z400 system [view my complete system specs]

     

    Broadcast & Post Production Consultant / Trainer  VET

     

    T 07581 201248 | E pat@vet.co.uk | W www.vet.co.uk |


    Media Composer V8.2 Review Background Render

    -

    Follow me on Twitter Pat_H_VET

  • Mon, Feb 5 2018 2:26 PM In reply to

    • SR555
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    Thank you DStone.

    The project is set up exactly as you advised.   With the exception that the footage is AMA which won't take a same as source export without a mixdown.  So the workarounds I tried were 1) exporting a qt movie straight out, using the 'custom' to go to DV50 16x9, or alternatively, miding down the sequence to DV50, which matches the source codec, and doing a same as source.

    The same as source squeezed in my test.  I'll try it once more.  Squeeze and AME only seemed to accept the reference files.

    I'm new to Squeeze, and set it up mostly as you recommended, but you suggested some additional settings so I'll try those. 

    Avid Media Composer 7, Macbook Pro Retina, Mountain Lion [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Feb 5 2018 3:33 PM In reply to

    • SR555
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    Thanks Pat.  What would be your workflow in this situation?   Am I crazy?  This should be working, right?

    Avid Media Composer 7, Macbook Pro Retina, Mountain Lion [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Feb 5 2018 3:34 PM In reply to

    • DStone
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    Sorry, forgot to mention. I do a mixdown as part of the export. It's necessary no matter what as the 4x3 has to be rendered in any case.

    The biggest thing with Squeeze is it defaults to letterbox/pillbox. That's why you have to set it to unconstrained. This gets you the 720x480 MPEG-2 with the 16x9 flag set.

    DIY quad core I7-4790K, 16Gb, NVidia GTX 970 4GB, Win 10 Pro, MC 8.x (generally the latest or the one just before), MC 7.x [view my complete system specs]

    Dave S.

  • Mon, Feb 5 2018 3:47 PM In reply to

    • SR555
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    IT'S WORKING!! Oh. my. God.  Thank you

     To be honest, by the end of the day there were so many tests I was getting bleary-eyed, so it's possible something was off.

    The original export from Avid was squeezed though, so it looks like it will be necessary to correct the aspect ratio outside of Avid the same way as for the mpeg2.  

    Have to run for an appointment but will post back later on the specifics of the export.

    Thank you thank you

     

    Avid Media Composer 7, Macbook Pro Retina, Mountain Lion [view my complete system specs]
  • Wed, Feb 7 2018 5:31 AM In reply to

    • SR555
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    I've been tied up and am just now getting back. 

    I am still having a lot of "tearing" and artifacting with the DVD and am not sure why.  I am concerned it may be coming from mixed field order issues - will troubleshoot that tomorrow - and but am not quite sure how to solve that yet.  I would assume the mixdown would handle that?   But am also concerned that there may be aspect ratio weirdness causing it.

    So I took a closer look at the aspect ratio tests, and it looks like the only thing that will do a proper export that can be encoded in AME is a 720x480 either quicktime or reference, with 16x9 sqare pixel aspect.  Your method did work in squeeze, which set the widescreen aspect at 1.78 (isn't it supposed to be 1.21 or 1.33?  Keep seeing different things).  Not sure if that's causing the tearing or not.

    Also, is there a way to stop Squeeze from multiplexing? The DVD_PS setting.  The reason is that I have a fairly extensive Encore project built already and it will not replace an asset that is a differerent type.  The current encore asset is split into m2v and wav.  So I had to go to AME to burn the 16x9 square pixel project - which creates a replaceable file at the proper aspect -  but am seeing tearing and artifacting there as well. 

    It's really getting down to the wire, client is coming back into town and i will need to deliver this and am getting nervous. Outputting a master has always been so much simpler - this whole thing has just reached the point of absurdity. 

    Doing another encode tonight and hoping for better luck with 2 pass.

    Avid Media Composer 7, Macbook Pro Retina, Mountain Lion [view my complete system specs]
  • Wed, Feb 7 2018 2:00 PM In reply to

    • DStone
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    Widescreen (16x9) aspect is 1.78. Standard (4x3) is 1.33.

    How long is the material, how much fast movement (which includes things like fades), and how clean is the material? All of these things affect encoding quality.

    On a single sided (4.7Gb) DVD, using CBR you can fit 1 hour of material encoded at 8Mb/s with a PCM audio stream (1536Kb/s), or 9.1Mb/s with an AC3 audio stream (384Kb/s). At 90 minutes this goes down to 5.1Mb/s and 6.2Mb/s respectively. And for 2 hours it's 3.5Mb/s and 4.5Mb/s.

    If you're using VBR for longer material then it gets more complicated. One of the biggest factor is noise. The encoders read noise as movement so scenes which should use a lower bitrate don't go as low as they could. Which mean scenes which need the higher bitrate don't always get as much as they need. There are settings which control what the encoders think is noise.

    Assuming you have reasonably clean material, a 90 minute encode using 2-pass VBR should encode well with a min/avg/max of 2450/6200/9100 (AC3) or 2000/5100/8000 (PCM), a GOP of 18 and an IPB of 1/17/0. You could also try an IPB of 3/5/0 and see if that helps with the tearing (more full frames with fewer predicted frames).

    It is possible to get 2 hours on a single sided DVD, but that takes a lot of work to get a clean disk and is highly dependent on the source material.

    For longer disks it's better to use a double sided disk and use CBR at the highest bitrates.

    As for Squeeze, there should be a DVD_ES preset. This gets you your elementary streams. If you don't have that preset, add the DVD_PS preset to the job, double-click on the preset in the job list to edit it, and in the upper right change the stream type of Program to Elementary.

    To change the GOP and IPB values in Squeeze, edit the settings for the job and click on the Advanced button at the bottom.

    If you have excessively noisy video, change the Noise setting from sensitivity to reduction and raise the setting from the default of 5 (you may need to play around with a sample to find a good setting). For that matter, unless you have exceptionally clean video to begin with, the default sensitivity of 5 is probably too low anyway.

    Also, in the advanced settings, check the RGB 16-235 input level checkbox. If you're material is already at NTSC levels, turn this on.

    DIY quad core I7-4790K, 16Gb, NVidia GTX 970 4GB, Win 10 Pro, MC 8.x (generally the latest or the one just before), MC 7.x [view my complete system specs]

    Dave S.

  • Wed, Feb 7 2018 3:27 PM In reply to

    • SR555
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    Thank you DStone. That's good information.

    The material is a 2 hour mix of someone's home video over her kid's lifetime.  It includes about 30% soccer, as well as games that were shot at night but properly exposed, so her camera handled low light fairly well but kicked up the gain quite a bit.  Not noisy but with strong, saturated colors.  

    There are several short clips that are very noisy and underexposed, but needed to be included.   Mostly things are well-exposed. There are about 1/4 sd progressive shots received from another editor, not great quality and some pixellation.  The rest of the program is interlaced, the majority of that pulled from DVDs and encoded to Avid DV.

    The exported dv file has been running roughly 50 gig.  Been encoding at a bit rate of 4.5 to fit it on a standard DVD. Have never burned a dual layer DVD but willing to try.

    Files looked terrible, blocky, tearing, some interlace artifacts, halo and dotted artifacts around movement, some ghosting. 

    I'm experimenting with your suggested settings now.   Thanks again. 

     

     

     

    Avid Media Composer 7, Macbook Pro Retina, Mountain Lion [view my complete system specs]
  • Sat, Feb 10 2018 8:13 PM In reply to

    • DStone
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    Re: Unwanted letterbox, also question about DVD compatibility

    If you're using VBR at 4.5Mb/s, then your max is only going to be around 6.5 - 7.0Mb/s, and your low is going to be around 1Mb/s (maybe even lower). Nothing looks goos at that low of a bit rate (except for completely still shots with little detail).

    DIY quad core I7-4790K, 16Gb, NVidia GTX 970 4GB, Win 10 Pro, MC 8.x (generally the latest or the one just before), MC 7.x [view my complete system specs]

    Dave S.

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