Canon HV20 HD clip

Here is our first exported video from our new Canon HV20, captured by JBQ. The camera grabs 1080i video (1440×1080 anamorphic to 1920×1080 at 30 fps, 60 fields), has support for external mic, hotshoe and component, composite, HDMI & S-video output. The clip was exported with QuickTime Pro to 2 mbps h.264 (7 MB), 1280×720, audio removed. There are quite some interlacing issues visible in the clip because of the conversion to 720p, but if you overlook these, capture quality is top notch. Right click below to save the clip and then watch it (might be slow if you try to render it inside your browser).

It looked great when we played back the original capture in our 55″ 1080i-capable HDTV. We liked it so much that we are thinking that we should buy an Apple TV in the near future (especially if the rumored 160 GB model gets released and if it’s updated to playback 1080i), or a PS3 which is able to playback h.264 at 1080p. All our movie editing is done on our dual 2×1.25 GHz PowerMac G4 with iMovie ‘05. Not sure if there is a good reason to upgrade to iMovie ‘06 yet. We won’t opt for iLife ‘08 because it might not be able to run on Mac OS X 10.3.9 that this PowerMac runs — JBQ does not want to upgrade the OS because of expected driver problems with some of his scanners/printers (that machine is loaded with exotic third party hardware, so we can’t afford to break the current installation).

I found one interesting bug btw. The raw file encapsulated in .mov that iMovie ‘05 exports under its “share” option playbacks fine on the PowerPC with QuickTime Pro, but the same file does not playback when using the exact same version of Quicktime Pro on my PC! So even if my PC is faster than our PPC (which would make it ideal for re-encodings), we are completely tied on using just the PPC for all video-related work just because of this incompatibility.

Update: It seems that iLife ‘05 does all of what we need to do — with a few workarounds. iMovie ‘05 does everything we need to do. iDVD ‘05 does not support widescreen menus, but that’s ok (the actual video is correctly encoded at 852×480 anyway). iDVD can’t burn to our external burner (even with patchburn/tricks, neither iDVD ‘06 is guaranteed to be able to because we run an older OSX version), but thankfully our Toast 5.2 is able to burn disk images, so all we have to do is export our iDVD projects as .img. Unfortunately, the DVD-video bit is not set on the DVD-RW disk, so some players might have trouble recognizing the burned DVD as DVD-video, but all our devices and software players seem to cope well with that, so we are in the clear.

Update 2: Wow, the whole Final Cut Studio 2 suite costs just $1300. This is amazingly cheap considering all these pro apps that you are getting as part of the deal. Similar software until recently would cost $20,000.


Richard wrote on June 3rd, 2007 at 5:51 AM PST:


I just reencoded a clip from 25i to 50p (Europe ;-) ) by seperating the fields and using them as full frames. It looked quite nice, and is a valid option in my opinion if the video is only to be viewed on a computer screen. And additionally you have no data loss, as you would have if you would apply “deinterlacing” filters.


This is the admin speaking...
Eugenia wrote on June 3rd, 2007 at 6:57 AM PST:

You don’t offer me a software solution as to how to do this though. Not sure if QT or iMovie does that. I use a Mac you see, and no advanced solutions.

Please use HTML to represent links on my blog btw…

Richard wrote on June 3rd, 2007 at 7:22 AM PST:

Ups, sorry about this html link thingi, I used a little C program that I created for this purpose, utilizing only libquicktime.

The filenames and codec are hardcoded, but it worked for me. :-)

It was done on linux and propably classifies as “advanced” solution. ;-)


This is the admin speaking...
Eugenia wrote on June 3rd, 2007 at 7:23 AM PST:

Thanks, I will give it a try when I get a chance, although the source .mov file only QuickTime for PPC could read. It’s a weird uncompressed format, VLC kept crashing too, not just Quicktime for Windows…

This is the admin speaking...
Eugenia wrote on June 3rd, 2007 at 7:58 AM PST:

I will try to extract a small sample later. It’s a 16bit-integer-something format, from what Quicktime’s info panel said…

Richard wrote on June 3rd, 2007 at 7:49 AM PST:

It would be nice if you could provide a small sample of the uncompressed source, I will then check whether it works with libquicktime, and if it does not I will forward it to the libquicktime developers, and see whether it can be fixed.


Comments are closed as this blog post is now archived.

Lines, paragraphs break automatically. HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

The URI to TrackBack this blog entry is this. And here is the RSS 2.0 for comments on this post.