5 Replies Latest reply: Sep 3, 2008 2:27 AM by Tom Wolsky
JimmyZCCK Level 1 (0 points)
I'm using FCEHD 3.5.1. I have hired a firm to transfer well over 200 hours of home video to DVD. They sent me four sample files (mp4s) to see which works best with my FCE. It took over 15 minutes to render a 2 minute file (neither first.mp4). Surely there must be a drag and drop format i can receive these videos in. If a 2 minute clip takes 15 minutes, my 2 hour dvds will take forever. Please help me with tech info so i can direct this firm.

The formats they supplied me so far are:
adaptive.mp4, lower first.mp4, neither first.mp4, upper first.mp4. The only one that worked was neither first and that was after the long render.

Should i upgrade to FCE 4 ? As you can see, i'm a newbie so all help is appreciated.


Many, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • David Harbsmeier Level 7 (29,920 points)
    Welcome to the forum!

    The version of FCE that you have works natively with DV and HDV. FCE 4 works natively with DV, HDV and AVCHD. No versions of FCE (that I'm aware of) work with MPEG-4 natively. It is generally considered a delivery codec and not suitable for editing - without extensive conversion (as you've discovered) and quality loss.

    Why are they sending you MPEG-4 files anyway? Don't they have the stuff on VHS or 8mm?

  • JimmyZCCK Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for the response. I gave them hi8 and dv to make the DVDs. Capturing takes forever for me and since they were making the DVDs of the raw footage for the family to watch, they agreed to make a second copy in a format that i could use in FCE.

    My thought was that they could speed up my work since they were already making DVDs. was this ill-conceived?

    Is there another format i can have them put it in that won't result in any quality loss?
  • David Harbsmeier Level 7 (29,920 points)
    Well ... yeah. It was kind of ill conceived since they used a format that FCE doesn't work with natively.

    I'm a bit confused though. You hired a company to transfer the footage to DVD-Video .. correct? If that's being done for you, why do you need files of the same footage to work with in FCE? Just curious as to your needs/intentions for the footage. Knowing that may make a difference it what workflow is recommended.

    If you plan to edit the footage, ideally you'd capture from the original source tapes as Apple DV NTSC. FCE works very well natively with QuickTime/Apple DV.

    But if you don't mind a loss of quality, you could use MPEG Streamclip to convert the DVD's VOB files into Apple DV NTSC.

  • JimmyZCCK Level 1 (0 points)
    I have two goals regarding this transfer. 1. my family enjoys looking at the raw footage and DVDs are easier for them to use than the tapes. 2. I am wanting to edit the footage into a condensed version. My thinking was that since the firm is capturing the footage to reach my first goal, the capture could also serve my second.

    They are OK to give me the footage in a different format from mpg4, i just need to tell them which. I (perhaps) naively thought that since they are capturing the footage for the DVD that it could also serve my editing needs. Is that not the case?

    Do you have any suggests as to desired FCE formats that won't result in loss of quality or am i always going to see loss if the original capture was not done through FCE?
  • Tom Wolsky Level 10 (114,480 points)
    What David said. It has to be transferred to QuickTime using the DV codec.