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Up-Convert DV (Anamorphic 16x9) to HD size (ratio)

1955 Views 28 Replies Latest reply: Feb 26, 2013 6:21 AM by Frankiejmovies RSS
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Frankiejmovies Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Oct 18, 2012 8:50 PM

Hello Everyone,


I need to up-convert DV (Anamorphic 16x9) footage (originally shot on DVCAM) to an HD ratio... I understand that the footage is not going to be HD, but I need it to be HD Size (ratio) for export to an HD DVD & and for viewing in HD size on the web. I downloaded Red Giants "Instant HD," and I'm having problems getting it to work.


In general, I am super confused as to the interlaced\progressive issue, frame rate, etc.


In short, what is the best way to get this done in the best quality possible, and in what format of HD should I do this? 1280x720p? 1920x1080p? 1920x1080i? or 1440x1080i?


Also, will there be cutting, letterboxing, stretching, etc?


Thanks, as I can not get straight answers anywhere on the web.



iMac\ 2.4 Intel Core 2 Duo\ 2 GB SDRAM, Mac OS X (10.5.6)
  • Captain Mench Level 6 Level 6 (13,805 points)

    It really depends on what you want to get out of it.  I created a droplet for myself a long time ago from Compressor that worked really well (for ME).  Here's what I suggest:


    1) Take and afternoon to try different things until you get what you want.

    2) Open Compressor and select the SETTING tab

    3) Click the CREATE NEW SETTING (plus with arrow) and then QUICKTIME MOVIE and name it SD2HD or something

    4) New Inspector window will pop up... select Video: SETTINGS...

    5) change COMPRESSION TYPE: to (your pick, but I'd use...) Apple ProRes 422 (LT) and leave everything else the same (OK)

    6) Back in the INSPECTOR below the description are a bunch of squares (you're in ENCODER right now) - click on the third one, FRAME CONTROLS

    7) Click the COG button next to FRAME CONTROLS: and change the controls then to ON.

    8) These next ones you'll need to mess with to get the best settings later... but start with: Resize Filter BEST, leave the others as is.

    9) now click the GEOMETRY square and change FRAME SIZE to whatever you want... 1920x1080?? Anamorphic should scale right to that size.


    10) SAVE


    11) Then, in teh SETTINGS window of compressor scroll down to bottom and you'll see a Custom folder and your setting there. 


    12) Try small pieces of 10 seconds to see if you like it.  Also, 10 seconds gives you an idea of how long it will take... 10 second clip takes 1 minute to convert?  Well, then your video will average 6:1 compression time - which is important if you've got kids to take to soccer.


    Keep messing with the Geometry size (720 might just be big enough and won't look as crappy) and Frame Controls - Details Levels... Anti-aliasing... etc.


    Good luck,



  • Shane Ross Level 8 Level 8 (41,655 points)

    FYI, he's a Lt. Colonel now.  He just can't change his username. 

  • Captain Mench Level 6 Level 6 (13,805 points)

    Sorry. Been traveling in Switzerland!!


    Yeah, if original is interlaced that can help build extra lines for the new size. By you'll want your final version to end up progressive. Good luck.



  • Captain Mench Level 6 Level 6 (13,805 points)

    Making things look good is the ONLY reason you should do something!!  So, if it looks fine I 1080i then leave it alone. My original reason for making it progressive goes back to a seemingly unrelated technique I used to use for slomotion DV where you would shoot interlaced 30i and then split the fields into frames by doing some compressor magic and making it 60p HD and then conforming it to 24 and reimporting.


    Now, that was unrelated, and having to make it HD was only a byproduct of the limitations of compressor, but it did bring up a point.  Regardless of how the TV actually presents the fields, making it progressive ensures that there will be enough horizontal lines in the image. IOW, I've always been concerned (and therefor have never tried it your way) that what I would end up with is odd looking interlacing due to the size mismatch.


    720x480i is really (720x240)x2 and that doesn't really compute to (1920x540)x2. I'm NO compression guru, so don't take my word for it. If it looks good, use it!  But do a smaller test with the deinterlace option and send it to the TV too. Side by side them and make a choice.


    Good luck!!



  • Michael Grenadier Level 6 Level 6 (19,800 points)

    and one thing to add to what the Capt (sorry Colonel) says, in the geometry tab, you may need to set pixel aspect ratio to square (if you're going to 1920x1080 for example).  Not sure if it makes a difference, but I've seen instances where things get screwed up in compressor cause the pixel aspect ratio is defaulting to a different proportion. 


    Also, deinterlacing in the frame controls tab is another option to consider.  Again, set the quality to best.


    You can set an in and out in the preview window to do a short test. 

  • Shane Ross Level 8 Level 8 (41,655 points)

    I'm upconverting a movie that was fully shot on DV, and needs to deliver ProRes 422 HD.  Here's my workflow.


    1) Media manage the footage so that I only have the clips used in the sequence. I choose the COPY option, and allow for 1 second handles.  I target a drive different from the one I have the main project on.


    2) Use Compressor to upconvert the footage.  Make a custom 4:3 setting: 1440x1080 (that's 4:3 square pixel).  Turn on the Frame controls and make scaling BEST...but do not deinterlace.


    3) Make a custom destination and define the file naming convention there.  Make it so that it DOES NOT add any suffix to the name, like "-Apple ProRes 422."  You can then customize your preset to use that custom destination. Save that destination.  Make the destination a separate location so that you can take the originals offline when needed.




    Compress that clip to make sure it looks good, including the name. add ALL the clips to Compressor, add the saved preset to all the clips.  Click SUBMIT...and wait a day or two. Actually, you might have to do this in chunks of 100 clips or so. That's what I did.  Otherwise Compressor chokes.


    4) After all the clips are compressed, move the originals somewhere else.  FCP will now note that they are offline. (I throw them into the trash, but don't empty it yet)


    5) Reconnect to the new clips. 


    6) Change the sequence setting to be ProRes 422...and 1920x1080 square pixel. 


    7) highlight all the clips and REMOVE ATTRIBUTES: basic Motion and Distort. 

  • Shane Ross Level 8 Level 8 (41,655 points)

    >"What exactly is ProRes 422 HD?"


    Oh dear.  Well, I really don't mean to be rude here, but if that is a question, than you might consider finding someone to do this. This is pretty technical, and requires a bit of know how. This isn't a simple push-button proceedure.  I mean, I've been hired (very cheaply because I like the project) by two very talented sisters to uprez their documentary. They are great when it comes to story, but lack the technical knowledge needed to online, or uprez, or color correct. So they found some people who know what to do and got our assistance.  You might need to do that.


    ProRes is the main file type...that FCP uses for HD. 


    >"If I media manage, I will lose all of the extra footage that I captured, and I do not own a deck. I am scared that I will need the footage in the future. What is the benefit of media managing in regrads to the compression of the movie?"

  are COPYING the footage. Making of copy of the media, but only the clips used in the cut, not the full media file.  Nothing will be lost.  The benefit is that you will only convert the footage used in the movie...the smalle clips. Not the full media files that those clips come from. It takes a lot less time and space.


    >"1440x1080? That is an odd ratio... why this ratio?"


    Because DV is a 4:3 format, and HD is 16:9 only.  But if you convert your 4:3 into 16:9...everyone will look short and fat. Squished. If you make it 4:3, but HD size...there will be black bars on the sides of the image (reverse of what you get with letterboxing.) Once you do this, you need to (and I left this out of the original instructions) do what is called PAN AND SCAN...push in another 25-30% so that the image fills the screen, then adjust the image so what you want to see is visible. Because when you push in to fill the screen, the tops and bottom of the picture will get chopped off.


    >is it 1440x1080i or p?


    i...Interlaced.  If your footage is 29.97 interlaced should keep it 29.97 interlaced HD.  Interlaced HD looks fine. Sports is interlaced, TV news...lots of things, including TV docs. I work on many a year that are 29.97 interlaced HD.


    >how is this going to play into the fact that I have DV 16x9 Anamorphic footage, and I want a wide screen look? Is this going to give me letter boxing on the right and left of the screen as well?"


    OH?  It's Anamorphic DV? Well...then...make it full 1920x1080 square pixel.


    >"what do you mean by define the file naming convention? why cant there be any suffix?"


    Because then you cannot simply reconnect the media. FCP requires that the clips all have exactly the same name, reel number and timecode.  If you have clips with "-ProRes 422" at the end...FCP will no reconnect. Unless you do so maually. one clip at a time.  Or, if you compress the footage without this option, you'll have to remove that added suffix, one clip at a time. VERY time consuming.


    >"So I need to cut the full movie into chunks? My movie is 1hr 38 min... what is the possibility of compressor pulling it off? Cutting the movie into 100 pieces is very time consuming"


    When you media manage, you'll have a folder with hundreds of clips.  The 90 min project I worked on had 675.  I tried doing them all at once and Compressor hated me.  So I did 100-120 at a time.  Took me a couple days.  Yes, it is time consuming.


    >"Why 1920x1080 now? I thought we were working with 1440x1080"


    So you can PAN & SCAN, like I described above. BUT, your footage is 16:9, so no need to do that.


    >"Remove all of the attributes? or just basic motion and distort?"


    Just Basic Motion and Distort. That's why I singled them out, and didn't mention the others.


    >Will the final file only have letterboxing on top and bottom like most HD you see on TV?

  should have NO letterboxing. HD si 16:9. HDTVs are 16:9. If you are seeing letterboxing on an HDTV it is either a feature film that is more squeezed that 16:9 (2.35 to 1 ration opposed to 1.77 to 1 of 16:9) or it is an HD show airing on an SD channel.


    >Also, how large is the typical HD feature movie file around 1hr and half?"


    ProRes 422?  Hmmm...about 140-155GB. 


    >I may have to find someone that can do this for me, as it is out of my league, but I'm still trying it myself"


    You might. THis is pretty complex.

  • Shane Ross Level 8 Level 8 (41,655 points)

    You would ask for an "Online editor," one who can uprez already captured material to HD.


    1. I have used Instant HD...and found that I could get equal results using custom settings in Compressor. Instant HD is for those who lack the technical ability to dig into those settings to get good results.  Great for some.  Personally I either use my Kona card to recapture and get the best results, or I use Compressor.


    2. Not sure...having not worked with DV Anamorphic.  Perhaps the pixel aspect ratio is set to rectangular and not square? sorry, I can't tell without seeing it and futzing with it.

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