Latest post Thu, Sep 3 2015 3:31 AM by rfnoise. 16 replies.
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  • Tue, Aug 18 2015 7:59 PM

    • rfnoise
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    Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    I run Media Composer as a video satellite on my Pro Tools rig. I receive 55 minute (or longer) flattened QuickTime moives, either DNxHD145 or some flavor of Pro Res.  Always 1080 video . If I am lucky I can simply AMA link and go to work. Sometimes I am not lucky and it is obvious that the field order is wrong.  Although this is ultimately a problem that should be fixed by my clients, I have to manage my time and deal with it. Also, some clients seem unable to comprehend or fix.

    1. Import with different field order. I have discovered that “fast import” keeps the existing field order regardless of what I choose on the import dialog. I can force a slow import, which then honors my field order setting. This is time consuming (up to 100 minutes) but does work in the end.

    2. AMA link seems to ONLY use Avid’s default expectation of upper field first. I am currently on MC8.3.1 (Win7). I have tried to switch field order by altering a clip’s Source Settings. No matter what choices I select and apply (Progressive, upper field, lower field, split, merged), there is no change of realtime playback and no change when I transcode the clip. I’ve read more than once that this should work, so perhaps I am making a mistake or it isn’t meant to work that way? Can someone explain what the choice for “split” and “merged” fields on this screen does?

    3.  A TimeWarp effect is very fast and easy but turns interlaced into progressive, which looses temporal information and thus makes critical lip sync adjustments a little less certain. Also, I hope to maintain the highest quality I can, since we project to a rather large screen.

    4.  I can use a pair of video tracks (same video on each track but 1 frame apart) with a matte key to switch the playback field order in realtime. This is fast to set up and works very well except that it displaces my audio-video sync by 1/2 frame (relative to Pro Tools), which then requires compensation elsewhere. I have the ability to delay my audio path and put everything back into sync, but I hope to avoid this solution because at some point I will forget to turn off the audio delays! Also, I THINK any video export I make would be wrong (since the fields and frames are no longer lined up correctly).

    Is there a better way to deal with this? Apologies for such a long post.

    Richard

     

     

    HP Z840, Win7Pro(64bit)+sp1, 16GB ram, NitrisDX, local raid storage [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Aug 18 2015 11:53 PM In reply to

    • rfnoise
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    I may be heading down a rabbit hole on this. I am trying to troubleshoot our swapped fields problem on my client's behalf, since they are at a loss. They would like to give me video that is always good for Media Composer. I have two versions of a show, output from FCP as DNxHD-145. Both outputs reportedly made by the same individual using the same settings. The only difference is one contains some footage that has been up-rezzed, otherwise the same sequence. They were output about a week apart.

    When opened in QuickTime Pro, one of them appears to have swapped fields, with comb lines on objects in motion. When AMA-linked in MC, it looks good. The other file looks good in QT but has swapped fields when AMA-linked in MC. QT and MC are treating the files in opposite ways.

    What's happening here? Is there a flag that FCP sees opposite from MC?

    I read somewhere that one can check whether footage is marked as interlaced or as progressive, by opening in QT, look at video properties, check/uncheck the deinterlace checkbox. If NOTHING HAPPENS when checked, then the footage is not marked as interlaced. For both of my files, NOTHING HAPPENS when the box is checked. Not sure if that gives any relevant information.

    I'm just a poor audio guy trying to keep afloat! I'll be most grateful for knowledge or a ripping good guess about what is causing this.

    HP Z840, Win7Pro(64bit)+sp1, 16GB ram, NitrisDX, local raid storage [view my complete system specs]
  • Wed, Aug 19 2015 7:45 AM In reply to

    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    Sadly a field reversal effect has been on my wish list for MC for many a year and despite file based content regualrly having filed base dissues no such effect has appeared yet.

    The best solution is to export the clip in one field order and then re-import in the other. Clunky but it works.

    ACI Moderator. I'm not employed by Avid or work for them. I just do this in my spare time. Normally using the current Media Composer version on My... [view my complete system specs]

     

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  • Wed, Aug 19 2015 12:30 PM In reply to

    • rfnoise
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    Thank you for commenting, Pat. It is not what I hoped for, of course, but also I am not surprised.

    Can you, or anyone, please comment on the issues I see in my second post above? There must be some explanation why QuickTime should play only one DNxHD file smoothly (no obvious field order isuues), while Media Composer should play only the other file smoothly. It would suggest a basic difference in which field order is "expected" by QT and MC, does it not? But how can that be for 1080 files, where always upper fields should be dominant. Is there a flag or other metadata that is not being set or read the same way?

    It is frustrating to have  this problem regularly for years, and have no idea how to stop it from happening.

    HP Z840, Win7Pro(64bit)+sp1, 16GB ram, NitrisDX, local raid storage [view my complete system specs]
  • Wed, Aug 19 2015 1:28 PM In reply to

    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    Quicktime player can't actually play interlaced content as such you should see interlacing jaggies as it shows each field as a single progressive frame. QT player has a de-interlace option that will blend the two fields but in doing so the field order is irrelevant. So QT player is no use for checking field order.

    ACI Moderator. I'm not employed by Avid or work for them. I just do this in my spare time. Normally using the current Media Composer version on My... [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

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  • Wed, Aug 19 2015 5:18 PM In reply to

    • rfnoise
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    After further investigation I can see you are right about QT's playback. More on that in a moment.

    QT DOES give me a way to identify field issues, sort of. I can park on a frame that contains two fields of motion, with jaggies between the fields displayed. When I put QT into single field mode, I will either see either the field that occurred earlier or later. I can park on the identical frame in each of my two movies (in QT). For the movie that Media Composer AMA plays properly, QT shows me the earlier field. For the movie that requires field order reversal to play properly, QT shows me the later field. If I can assume that QT (in single field mode) displays the "first" field it encounters within a frame (the dominant field?), I now have a way to see that one of my files does indeed have field order reversed (relative to the other). Because both exports came from the same FCP system, mostly from the same source footage, the field order change must happen during export and is not caused by bad metadata or some mysterious Avid behavior.

    Regarding QT's playback, the smoothness or lack thereof that we see between these two files is resulting from the differences in some 23.976 footage that looks smoother in one vs. the other. In MC, once the field issues are sorted, the same footage appears identical from both.

    Thankk you so much for helping me. I am going back to my client with all of this, and hopefully we can figure out what is causing it on their end.

     

    HP Z840, Win7Pro(64bit)+sp1, 16GB ram, NitrisDX, local raid storage [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Aug 20 2015 11:32 AM In reply to

    • Bruno M
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    Getting back to your original problem, have you tried using a FREE tool called Cliptoolz Convert v2?

    I found it some time ago and it's got some great features for Avid editors.

    It's Windows based, but (for instance) allows you to convert Avid generated MXF exports to Prores.

    It has a feature that I haven't used, but is described as...

    • Add interlace to progressive clips
    • Deinterlace to progressive

    Not sure if this means you can reverse field order but it's worth a look.

    the web site is..

    http://hdcinematics.com/convert-V2.html

    Bruno

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  • Thu, Aug 20 2015 11:47 AM In reply to

    • mjolnarn
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    If this is just for a fast turnaround you might want to use a trial of Sapphire , if the customer continues to deliver uncorrect media you might want to charge them enough to buy the full version of Sapphire

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    Tomas 

     

  • Thu, Aug 20 2015 11:51 AM In reply to

    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    AMA the content into MC. Use field stepping function (in command palette) to confirm field order correct or wrong.

    If correct then Consolidate or Transcode as needed.

    If wrong Import content using legacy import and force field order to correct.

    ACI Moderator. I'm not employed by Avid or work for them. I just do this in my spare time. Normally using the current Media Composer version on My... [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

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  • Thu, Aug 20 2015 8:38 PM In reply to

    • rfnoise
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    Yes Pat, that is where I am at currently. Waiting 100 minutes for MC to import is a difficult swallow when I get new video 10 minutes before our session start time. It does get the job done, though. Saffire looks tremendous but is huge overkill for an audio house.

    Avid has indicated (in another thread) that they are aware that the AMA tools for this are broken. Unknown when a fix may be available.

    Copied from ClipToolz website, "ClipToolz Convert V2 is no longer available due to issues with Apple licensing for ProRes conversions. There will be no future development and the application is no longer available. Thanks to all faithful users of Convert V2 for your support and encouragement!"

     

    Thank you all for your help.

    HP Z840, Win7Pro(64bit)+sp1, 16GB ram, NitrisDX, local raid storage [view my complete system specs]
  • Fri, Aug 21 2015 12:21 AM In reply to

    • jef
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    Hi

    From what I gather, you are doing audio post?  Here is what I would suggest, but this may miss something I do not know about your situation.

    First, switch your sequence in Avid to Progressive.  This will force Avid "deinterlace" your project.  This is a real time effect.

    Do your session.  You should now not see any issues.

    When done, make wave files and give them to the client and let them take them back to the party that made the files with incorrect field order in the first place.  They can replace their audio with yours and be responsible for delivery and any issues after that.

    Now, the reason I suggest this route is that if you are in fact just an audio house, you really don't want to be responsible for final delivery of video.  Since you are the last person touching the project, you can / will get blamed for any and all video problems.  I would not put myself in that position.

    Just my opinion.

    And for what it is worth, I have never had any luck with Sapphire's tool for changing field order.  And I have tried ...

    Jef

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  • Fri, Aug 21 2015 2:10 AM In reply to

    • rfnoise
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    Hi Jef,

    Yup, I have "just" an audio house. But hey, I understand it was just a figure of speech and you didn't intend any insult.

    You are correct, I deliver audio files to my clients and they are responsible for the finished outputs, and they create a classy product in the end. (I learned yesterday that the colorist deals with field issues by shooting a clip to Final Cut to swap fields quickly, then renders back to his Symphony.) I ultimately take responsibility for correcting lip sync problems (believe me, there are many that need fixing) as well as all sound design and sound deliverables. Thus, I have assembled the best audio-video system I can. My systems perform well beyond what is typical for audio folk. I can see lipsync trouble when video is 1/2 frame early, therefore I do not want to rely on progressive when the final product is delivered as interlaced. It is ME being fussy, I'm sure THEY wouldn't notice.

    Thanks for the Sapphire comment. BTW, someone from this forum lent me a copy of ClipToolz. Tonight I was  unable to get it to swap fields while converting ProRes or DNxHD source. The manual is not very thorough, maybe I missed something, but it just would not render unless I selected progressive. I am back to square one and my first post. I am glad Avid intends to fix the AMA settings problems (which you, Jef, have recently provided some test material for) and I look forward to the fix.

     

     

    HP Z840, Win7Pro(64bit)+sp1, 16GB ram, NitrisDX, local raid storage [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Aug 24 2015 10:58 PM In reply to

    • Lukas Boeck
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    you can reverse fields with a matte key. bit of a hassle.

    here's a tutorial:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S9FcGyChhlE

     

    you can spot 1/2 frame sync issues?

    you got better eyes tha me ;)

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  • Mon, Aug 24 2015 11:41 PM In reply to

    • rfnoise
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    Yes, matte key, that is what I mentioned in #4 of my original post. It's a neat trick, I Learned it from a YouTube video, perhaps that very one.

    1/2 frame is hard to see. Reading back my earlier post I realize I made a mistake. I meant that I can see 1/2 frame when audio is 1/2 or more early. Audio being 1/2 or 1 frame late is invisible to me. Audio slightly early "feels" wrong when you really get critical about lipsync. As an audio wonk, I get critical.  When it feels uncomfortable, and a 1/2 frame shift (audio later) makes it better, then I'll always shift another 1/2 frame. If it doesn't result in further improvement, I'll either shift back or often just leave audio 1/2 frame later than absolutely necessary. Video, like film, has an inherent 1/2 frame sync wander anyway. once you add errors down the road such as changes during color correct and/or playback in large rooms, little 1/2 frame errors may add up to bigger ones, so it is important to me to be as close as I can. I realize I am being far more anal than is necessary.

    HP Z840, Win7Pro(64bit)+sp1, 16GB ram, NitrisDX, local raid storage [view my complete system specs]
  • Mon, Aug 24 2015 11:49 PM In reply to

    • rfnoise
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    Re: Is there a better way to change field order of a clip?

    And, I fully admit that 1/2 frame shifts are completely meaningless unless viewing on genlocked hardware and monitors. It is futile through the record window or fullscreen on the desktop, so I don't do it that way.

    HP Z840, Win7Pro(64bit)+sp1, 16GB ram, NitrisDX, local raid storage [view my complete system specs]
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