Latest post Sun, Feb 7 2021 12:48 AM by jef. 20 replies.
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  • Tue, Jan 19 2021 3:19 PM

    • Pulck
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    Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    I'm wondering what the best workflow is for this.

    Let's say I've got a still image 3000x4000 pixels, it contains an alpha channel and I want to zoom into the image (not unreasonably, just to a level where the image will still hold up to 1080 broadcast level).

    Obviously P&Z is no good because it doesn't read the alpha channel. (Avid, please update this effect!)

    So the alternative is to AMA link to the file so that it comes into the Avid at full resolution. I do this, place the image on the timeline, open up the effects editor and adjust the scale and position values (it's automatically a "Matte Key" effect). But as soon as I scale up the image, Avid seems to create a proxy of the original image. In other words, when I zoom in I see jagged edges and pixellation.

    I've tried playing with the Frameflex settings of the source clip before I place it in the timeline, but that doesn't seem to improve things much.

    Any ideas?

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  • Tue, Jan 19 2021 3:32 PM In reply to

    • smrpix
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    It's kind of a workaround, but I just change the project settings to a suitably higher resolution -- 4K, 8K, -- import the still, go back to 1080 and manipulate with Frameflex.  That gets me through 90%+ of the work.  The other 10% gets moved over to After Effects for finalizing.

  • Tue, Jan 19 2021 5:54 PM In reply to

    • Pulck
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    Thanks for the suggestion.

    However, I just tried it and it didn't work for me. It still looked pixellated and rubbish when I zoomed into it!

    Just to confirm I'm doing it right, this is what I did:

    - Created a new 8K UHD project

    - Inside this project, AMA linked to the high-res still with the alpha channel (it looked great at this stage, inside the 8K project)

    - Went back into my 1080P project

    - Opened bin from the 8K project and placed the AMA linked still on my timeline

    Or did you mean something else?

    Also, you should know that I'm working on MC 2018.12.8.

  • Tue, Jan 19 2021 6:47 PM In reply to

    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    I recall testing this sort of thing (P&Z in 4K or 8K Project for use in 1080 Project) and posting my results. 

    As I recall, you will preserve Hi-rez quality only if you do a videomixdown in the 8K project, then flip back to 1080.

    (I guess it depends on what you are doing with the Alpha matte, and when, though.)

     

     

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  • Tue, Jan 19 2021 6:58 PM In reply to

    • Pulck
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    Ah... OK. Mixdowns aren't going to work for me.

    This is an offline project which will go into an Avid conform suite next week and I was trying to make things a bit easier for the online editor, as I have stacked layers of stills.

    Anyway, ultimately it will be finished in Resolve, where hopefully there's no trouble bringing in high-res images with alpha channels...? But it would have been nice to have dealt with them entirely in Avid world. Feels like a bit of an oversight.

  • Tue, Jan 19 2021 8:37 PM In reply to

    • smrpix
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    This is one of the few instances where I import rather than link.  That's why I go to the higher rez project. 

     

    Resolve should be able to link to the Avid Media Files.

  • Wed, Jan 20 2021 8:32 AM In reply to

    • luca.mg
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    Link and transcode, there's an option in the source settings to preserve the original resolution, perhaps in the FrameFlex tab, not in front of a system to double check right now. Whatever movement You apply to the stills it should not translate to Resolve though, You'll end up with the cuts only. You can export to Resolve with Avid mediafiles, or export and conform in Resolve going back to the original footage, which would be my preferred workflow.

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  • Wed, Jan 20 2021 10:02 AM In reply to

    • Bruno M
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    Pulck:

    ...

    Just to confirm I'm doing it right, this is what I did:

    - Created a new 8K UHD project

    - Inside this project, AMA linked to the high-res still with the alpha channel (it looked great at this stage, inside the 8K project)

    - Went back into my 1080P project

    - Opened bin from the 8K project and placed the AMA linked still on my timeline

    Or did you mean something else?

    ...

    Once you put the AMA still on your timeline, how did you zoom it up? You should be using Frameflex to do your zooming. If you use any of Avid's other effects (such as Resize) it won't work.

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  • Wed, Jan 20 2021 10:20 AM In reply to

    • Pulck
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    Bruno M:

    Once you put the AMA still on your timeline, how did you zoom it up? You should be using Frameflex to do your zooming. If you use any of Avid's other effects (such as Resize) it won't work.

     

    I was using the Scaling values in the Matte Key effect (which is what Avid automatically applies to AMA clips with an alpha channel).

    I've just tried zooming with Frameflex instead and the alpha channel doesn't resize, so sadly this approach won't work!

  • Wed, Jan 20 2021 10:24 AM In reply to

    • Pulck
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    smrpix:

    This is one of the few instances where I import rather than link.  That's why I go to the higher rez project. 

     

    Resolve should be able to link to the Avid Media Files.

    Thanks - I've just tried this as well and still no luck!

    I used my 8K project to import ths stills then went back into my 1080p project and opened the bin from the 8K project. I placed the stills on my 1080p timeline, zoomed in and again they looked terrible!

    So then I tried rendering them (first at DNxHD36, then at DNxHD120) and they still don't look as good as they should.

    Just to check, I went back into the 8K project and zoomed into the stills there. They looked perfect.

    So I'm really puzzled.... It seems like once Avid is inside a 1080p project, it won't read the images original resolution.

  • Wed, Jan 20 2021 10:28 AM In reply to

    • Pulck
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    luca.mg:

    Link and transcode, there's an option in the source settings to preserve the original resolution, perhaps in the FrameFlex tab, not in front of a system to double check right now. Whatever movement You apply to the stills it should not translate to Resolve though, You'll end up with the cuts only. You can export to Resolve with Avid mediafiles, or export and conform in Resolve going back to the original footage, which would be my preferred workflow.

    Sadly, I don't think you can transcode images with alpha channels.

    The workflow for Resolve is, I believe, to conform in Avid and then just pass the online resolution clips to Resolve. But I suppose in this instance - for stills that have alpha channels - this would best be dealt with by giving the source clips straight to Resolve and rebuilding the video layers. I was just hoping to avoid causing the online editor this pain.

  • Wed, Jan 20 2021 11:51 AM In reply to

    • luca.mg
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    I feel Your pain. True resolution indipendence has been asked for for decades now, Avid delivered the very unflexible FrameFlex instead, its name sounds like a bad taste joke, given the very limited and unflexible feature set. I had hopes that with the new playback engine things would change, but they haven't. You can search the feature requests forum and join the thread asking for resolution indipendence. While waiting for Avid to deliver, if they're not too busy fattening the stock holders instead of pleasing we the customers, You'll have to offline in MC and conform and online in Resolve, rebuilding by hand whatever zoom You applied to Your bitmaps.

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    peace luca

  • Wed, Jan 20 2021 12:01 PM In reply to

    • Pulck
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    luca.mg:

    I feel Your pain. True resolution indipendence has been asked for for decades now, Avid delivered the very unflexible FrameFlex instead, its name sounds like a bad taste joke, given the very limited and unflexible feature set. I had hopes that with the new playback engine things would change, but they haven't. You can search the feature requests forum and join the thread asking for resolution indipendence. While waiting for Avid to deliver, if they're not too busy fattening the stock holders instead of pleasing we the customers, You'll have to offline in MC and conform and online in Resolve, rebuilding by hand whatever zoom You applied to Your bitmaps.

    Thanks for the support!

    Well there's a lot to be pleased with on Avid. As a cutting tool it is second to none (in my opinion).

    But I agree it would be even more fantastic if its tool set kept up with modern requirements. This feels like one area it can definitely improve on.

  • Wed, Jan 20 2021 1:49 PM In reply to

    • BarkinMadd
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    Transcoding of alpha mattes was added to 2020.12 - I wonder if that makes any difference to your workflow?

    Add - Could you possibly post a sample image that we could try?

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  • Wed, Jan 20 2021 1:57 PM In reply to

    • Pulck
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    Re: Importing high-res stills with alpha channels

    BarkinMadd:

    Transcoding of alpha mattes was added to 2020.12 - I wonder if that makes any difference to your workflow?

    Thanks, it might... but sadly I have to use 2018.12 for this job.

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