T351 Week 12 - Spring 2013
- Lab this week: Review storytelling exercises.
- Final Projects.
According to the syllabus, your completed Final Project pre-production
materials are due this week. This includes:
- Proposal & treatment (due a few weeks ago)
- Script - NOTE: I'm extending the due date to next Monday in lecture AT THE VERY LATEST.
- No lab next week. The time is for you to work on final projects. Remember to turn in storytelling critiques next week as well
- 2 full weeks left to work on final projects
- Final Projects should be finished by the end of
week 14. We will review final projects starting promptly
at the start of our week 15 lab (April 25 & 27).
- Note: The registrar has assigned our Spring 2013 T351 class with a final exam time of: 10:15 AM Monday, May 3rd - Studio 5
- Video codecs (continued)
- Format Conversion (including 3:2 pull down, etc)
- Digital Video & High Definition Broadcasting
- Metadata (timecode, closed-captioning, etc.)
- Cybercollege Module
9 (part 1 and 2)
- Cybercollege DTV
- Also check out the embedded links in the text below (not on quiz)
Interframe verses Intraframe
Only the highest end video is uncompressed. Almost all video (especially
HD) uses some sort of compression. When looking at the characteristics
of various video recording gear, it's important to understand the basic
differences between two general types of compression.
Most standard definition production tv codecs use some type of intraframe
This is where we take each individual frame and squeeze it so
it all fits onto tape or disk. Examples of intraframe codecs include:
- Apple ProRes
- Avid codecs (AVR25, AVR 50, etc.)
- Panasonic D5
However many new HD recording formats use interframe
important thing to understand about interframe compression is that it
compresses over time as well as space. In intraframe compression we
divide the picture into smaller rectangles called macroblocks. These
macroblocks are compressed and tracked over time and placed into a GOP
(Group of Pictures) Examples of interframe codecs include:
- HDV (MPEG-2)
- XDCAM (MPEG-2)
MPEG-2 is a popular
interframe codec. It is a very efficient in that it can squeeze a high
definition video image into the same amount of space that a standard
DV stream can occupy. (That's why we can record HDV onto a miniDV tape.)
The other interesting thing about MPEG-2 is that it's scalable- we can
make the frame dimensions varying sizes (720 x 480, 1440 x 1080 etc.).
The down side is that GOPs can be difficult to edit. Deconstructing the
GOPs during the edit process tasks the computers to a greater degree
than intraframe codecs.
Converting Video for Multiple Purposes
Video from an editing system often needs to be converted to a different format before it can be used. Often it will need to be converted before it can be broadcast. Other than television, other uses include:
- DVD (SD and HD/Blu-ray)
- Internet (websites, YouTube, Vimeo, etc.)
- iPods, iPhones and other personal media devices
- Video games
- Video conferencing
Some of these applications use specialized codecs and technologies that have been developed specifically for them.
In many cases you can convert your video through Apple Compressor or Adobe Media Encoder to the appropriate
codec. Flip-for-Mac provides an alternate solution that can help with Mac to Windows media conversion.
Outputting for DVDs
Most DVD authoring software comes with encoding software.
Standard Definition Video DVDs require the MPEG-2 codec.
Blu-ray disks can use MPEG-2, MPEG-4/H.264, and SMPTE VC-1
Outputting for the Web (Youtube, Vimeo, etc.)
Most video sharing sites can take a variety of different formats which are outlined on their websites. In general, I've found H.264 is an excellent codec to deliver web-based videos. For HD videos I've found that lightly compressed (large) HD files can hiccup. So for HD videos instead of using the "best" setting, try "good" instead.
Sometimes you need a smaller video to fit inside a blog or a website. A little math can help make an appropriately-sized movie.
- For 4x3 (1.33) video you can use 720 x 540, 640x480 or 400x300 (or any dimensions you like as long as you divide the first by the second and get something close to 1.33)
- For 16x9 (1.78) video you can use 1920x1080, 1280x720 or 640x360 (or any dimensions you like as long as you divide the first by the second and get something close to 1.78)
Importing & Exporting for other Applications
In many communication projects, video is only one part of a media production
plan. It may be used concurrently with print, web, CD-ROM or other media.
If you're an editor, sooner or later you'll be asked to import or export
media files from or for other types of applications. Be sure you know how to export stills, audio files and video files.
Typical scenarios include:
- Outputting still images for print or Web applications
- Outputting audio files for CD, radio broadcast, or the Web
- Normalizing and processing audio tracks
- Audio sweetening
- Animation & Special effects
- Exporting videos for Web, videoconferencing, or
Editors will have to deal with a number of different media formats and
need to understand the physical distinction between them.
Some of the different formats include film, standard definition and
high definition versions of NTSC, PAL, 16 x 9 and 4 x 3.
NTSC (National Television Systems Committee) definition
of standard definition TV, (used in North America, some of South America,
Japan, etc) uses a frame rate close to 30, roughly 29.97 frames per second.
There are 525 scan lines; approximately 480 of these are visible. The
HD (high definition) standard for broadcast has been created by the ATSC,
the Advanced Television Systems Committee, which was formed at the urging
of the FCC to establish standards for the new high definition formats.
PAL (Phase Alternate Line) is used in most of Europe,
Australia, & Asia and runs at 25 frames per second using 625 lines.
SECAM (Sequential Color and Memory)
If possible it’s best to edit in the media’s native format.
If you have high-quality PAL footage, it’s best to try to keep
it in PAL. If you have 24 fps footage, it’s best to keep it in
24 fps. That way you won’t get conversion artifacts from changing
frame rates and generation losses. But while ideal, we can’t always
practice this. Often we’ll get a tape from another country, or
that contains another type of media that must be integrated into our
Converting 24p video & film to interlaced 60i video
When converting film or 24p video to 30/60i (29.97) video we use a 3:2
Film runs at 24 frames per second.
24p refers to video shot at 24 frames per second progressive- that means
there are no fields.
Since film runs at 24 fps and video runs about 30 interlaced fps, the two aren't
directly interchangeable at least on a frame for frame basis. (To be
more precise, 23.976 film frames become 29.97 video frames.) In order
to transfer film to 30 fps video, the film frames must be precisely sequenced
into a combination of video frames and fields.
A telecine is a piece of hardware containing a film
projector sequenced with a video capture system. The telecine process
is a term used to describe the process of converting film to video, also
called a 3 2 pulldown. In the 3-2 pulldown each frame of film gets converted
to 2 or 3 fields of video.
Note how four (24p fps) frames are converted to five interlaced frames (30i fps).
The problem with converting film frames to fields, is that some video
frames have fields from two different film frames. If you think about
it you'll see that this can present all types of problems.
Apple makes a nice product that works with Final Cut Pro, Apple
Cinema Tools, which includes a number of tools that can help convert
24 to 30 and back.
Another method is to transfer film to 24p video.
DTV (Digital TV broadcasting)
DTV broadcasts can be either HD (High Definition) or SD (standard
You can squeeze 4 SD programs in the same space used to broadcast one
Both use MPEG-2 compression.
SD vs. HD
SD works in both 4:3 and 16:9. Its video pixel dimensions include:
720 x 486, 720 x 480
HD is 16:9. Its video pixel dimensions include:
1280 x 720, 1920 x 1080
Video frame rates: 24p, 30p, 30i, 60p, or 60i.
Want to edit in in HD?
Editing - Almost all professional editing software (Media COmposer, Final Cut Pro, Premiere, etc.) can work in a variety of HD formats. However don't expect to be able to view your work in true high-definition unless you have a dedicated
HD monitor connected to your system.
Audio/video hardware interfaces provide input and output options (HD-SDI, RGB, HDMI, etc.). Using these, one can hook up an external HD display to monitor the editing or compositing software output in real-time. A few systems out there include:
- AJA's Kona
- Blackmagic Decklink
Storage - Low data rate formats such as DVCPro100 and HDV can readily be edited using common internal and external hard drives. Higher-data rate formats (E.g. Apple ProRes HQ or HDCAM) require more storage and a much faster access (E.g. a RAID accessed via SATA).
Metadata & Closed Captioning
Metadata (data about the data) is embedded text and numeric information about the clip or program. It can include, but is not limited to:
- clip name
- running time / duration
- audio levels
- DRM (digital rights management)
It can be stored and accessed in XMP (stands for Extensible Metadata Platform and is based on XML). While data can be embedded in XMP, some media formats do not allow for this so data is written to a separate sidecar file.
This is why it's important to keep the directory structure found on Canon DSLRs and in Sony XDCam storage devices. Key information (such as timecode) is often stored in a separate file.
one type of metadata that can be displayed on screen for the hearing-impaired. Carried
in the vertical blanking interval, the FCC mandates that all stations
data. If you watch closed-captionined programming, you'll see a variety of
variations in readability, placement and duration.
Companies like Soft NI create stand-alone subtitler systems that let
you integrate subtitles into a video stream. Adding subtitles involves
proper placement on the screen. Softel-USA makes products for subtitling
Good metadata overview by Philip Hodgetts: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GnPzpPvoyLA
Interesting Adobe/Lynda video about speech search capabilities: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HO5SyTPz6ZY
Focus Enhancements, Firestore is capable of setting up and recording custom metadata in the field. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FUcAQQyz_Mg
Avid makes Metasync, a product which let's editors work with this data
right in the timeline.
Vocabulary (Know these terms)
- Closed Captioning
- Sidecar file
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