Skip navigation

Workflow for telecine'd film, downres to edit on older computer w/FCP

1020 Views 30 Replies Latest reply: Nov 8, 2013 9:26 PM by Grainy2013 RSS
1 2 3 Previous Next
Grainy2013 Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Jul 20, 2013 9:36 AM

Hi folks - I wonder if someone could help me figure out how I can edit telecine'd 16mm film, which scanned in HD (the file is quicktime prores, I believe), on my older pre-HD computer, for a final output on a friend's high-end HD-friendly mac later.

It seems to me that I should be able to edit on my SD system using a lower-resolution version of the footage, and then export the whole thing to the other computer, conform the edits I made using the lower res footage with the original higher res footage, and then export as a final product.

I'm pretty sure the lab used ProRes for the telecine'd film.


Here are my specs

iMac OSX 10.5.8

1.9ghz PowerPC G5


Final Cut Pro (studio) 6.0.6

Currently my FCP is set to ProRes 422 for the last project I edited, which was SD super 8 film.


I know it would be easier to buy a new computer but I have got funds and it seems to me that it shouldn't be that hard to do using lower-res footage.

Anyway, I appreciate your help and patience!


Final Cut Studio '09, Mac OS X (10.5.8), 1.9ghz PowerPC G5
  • Jim Cookman Level 7 Level 7 (23,435 points)

    I'd take the files to your friend's machine, drop them into compressor and crunch them down to anamorphic dv.  DO NOT change any file names.


    Take a drive with the dv, edit until you are sick of the whole thing, take the project file back to your friend's computer, open fcp. it'll tell you the files are off line.  Reconnect to the high rez footage,  All done.

  • RatVega™ Level 4 Level 4 (1,855 points)

    You can do this, and you can do it several different ways depending your abilities and equipment and equipment. I frequently do something similar with a couple of PowerMac G5 systems we use for rough cutting.


    If you're running FCP6 (FCS2) it is techically possible to cut ProRes, but the question is whether it's practical. You're going to be fighting for storage space, RAM, processor cycles and probably video card bandwidth so a little testing is in order.


    First clean up the system, open a new project and import a clip of the 16mm footage as is. Look at the clip information in the Browser using list mode.  If the footage is not ProRes, then you need to post back for a transcode recommendation (although it'll probably be to transcode to ProRes422.) If the footage is indeed ProRes then move forward.


    Drop it on the timeline and let it auto-conform by answering Yes to the dialogue box about changing sequence settings to match the clip.  Just play with this clip a bit to see how it "handles." If it will play back acceptably you may want to cut it as is. 


    The "downrez" option: If you fear that the footage will overwhelm your system, you can transcode the footage into a proxy format using Compressor. It sounds as if you have experience with conforming, so I won't dwell on that. You can still use ProRes, just make a preset that will create the proxy you desire.


    When your edit is completed, you can simply port the folder with all your project files over to a friend's larger faster system and load up. Your FCP6 project will open in their FCP6 or FCP7 application. The conform should be a snap if your naming conventions were right.


    Hope this helps!

  • Michael Grenadier Level 6 Level 6 (19,810 points)

    You can use media manage to create a lower rez version and then when finsihed editing, relink to the original files.  Post back if you need help with this.

  • Michael Grenadier Level 6 Level 6 (19,810 points)

    Nope this is within fcp. 


    Make the browser active but without anything selected Screen shot 2013-10-29 at 6.11.13 PM.png

    So this will make new media at 720p (the original is 1080 24p)  Both need to be the same frame rate.


    Edit away and when you've finished your edit, you media manage the SEQUENCE back to your original format, and then reconnect to your full rez original footage.Screen shot 2013-10-29 at 6.15.08 PM.png


    I'd suggest you do a test of this workflow in case I've made a mistake or left something out (hard to imagine).

    There may be a better way to do this, and if someone knows of one, I hope they'll speak up.

  • Michael Grenadier Level 6 Level 6 (19,810 points)

    Assuming you haven't started to edit and that the original material is in a fcp friendly format, just create a new project and bring the material in to the project.  Then media manage the project.  Shouldn't matter whether it's on the same or a different hard drive as long as there is sufficent space.  I suppose there might be some kind of slight difference in the duration of the process if it was reading and writing to the same drive, but can't imagine it would be very important. 


    As I said, do a test with just a clip or two to test the workflow. 

  • Michael Grenadier Level 6 Level 6 (19,810 points)

    And now to push you right over the edge....


    What frame rate is the material?  Was it telecined with pulldown added?  If so, you might want to remove the pulldown before you start media managing or editing.  Post back if you need help with this.  Or ignore it if you like. 

  • Michael Grenadier Level 6 Level 6 (19,810 points)

    is it 24p (23.986 fps) or exactly 24 frames per second.  Usually they slow the film down slightly to 23.986 fps when they digitize it so that it will be able to be converted to standard video for the US at 29.97 fps by repeating fields in a certain pattern (also known as adding pulldown).   

  • Michael Grenadier Level 6 Level 6 (19,810 points)

    That's a very strange pixel dimension.  Don't think that fcp will deal with that well and it's not a standard HD format in the professional world as far as I can tell. 

    Who did this telecine? 

1 2 3 Previous Next


More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (0)


  • This solved my question - 10 points
  • This helped me - 5 points
This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. Apple disclaims any and all liability for the acts, omissions and conduct of any third parties in connection with or related to your use of the site. All postings and use of the content on this site are subject to the Apple Support Communities Terms of Use.