Archive for December 8th, 2007

Exporting with Ulead in 720p

There are three ways to export with Ulead in 720p, from which none is ideal, but hey…

Method 1:
Set the project properties to HDV or HD before you attempt any exports by following the first three images from this guide. IF your source footage is NTSC (30fps) and IF you are using “VideoStudio 11 Plus” instead of the “MediaStudio Pro 8” version, then you can just use the fourth image to export (this file is compatible with Vimeo HD and XboX360). But if you are on “Pro” or you require a different frame rate instead, then use this guide (compatible with Vimeo HD and PS3).

Method 2:
Also, there is another way to export, which is the same for both Pro and Plus versions, but it requires the installation of the XViD codec. Install it from here, load your Ulead application, set the HD project settings as mentioned above, edit, and then export like this (compatible with Vimeo HD).

The only changes you might need to do is to select either PAL’s 25 fps instead of the suggested NTSC’s 29.97 frame rate, or 23.976 if you shot in 24p mode. If you shot in default mode with an NTSC camera, leave the frame rate unchanged. Finally, uncheck de-interlacing if your footage is not interlaced.

Exporting in 720p using freeware utilities

NOTE: These guides are for any kind of source video, except from AVCHD cameras. Look here for AVCHD conversion which requires a special decoding in order to be handled correctly by these freeware tools.

To export in 720p with Avidemux2, download the latest preview3 version (or which ever version is the latest), install it, load your HD footage on it, do some basic clip editing (Avidemux2 is not a full video editor, but a clip editor), and when you are done, export like this. Avidemux2 is supported on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X (under X11). It is not recommended to export in mpeg-4 using Avidemux2 and instead use the suggested XViD export, because their h.264 files are not compatible with Quicktime (and they don’t care to fix it, I tried telling them). Finally, not use “yadif” if your footage is not interlaced.

The second way of exporting is using the command line version of FFmpeg. Follow the tutorial here to a degree on how to install ffmpeg on Windows, while use the ffmpeg version that comes with your distribution if you are under Linux. Please note that Ubuntu does not compile ffmpeg with AAC support for legal reasons, so you will have to edit the templates and export using XViD instead of h.264/AAC. Here are the 720p templates you need, pick the one with the right frame rate and edit in the filename of the video you are trying to convert. If your footage is not interlaced, edit the ffmpeg templates, and remove the “-deinterlace” attribute.

Regarding Mac OS X and ffmpeg, you can use the graphical tool called FFmpegX (also install mpeg2enc and mplayer, as their download page suggests), and then use it like this. However, disable de-interlacing on the above method if your footage is not interlaced. For Mac OS X, another good utility (not free), is VisualHub.

Another way to export is using the MediaCoder “full pack” under Windows. Load your HD/HDV file(s) on the application and then export like this. Disable the “linear blend” de-interlacing if your footage is not interlaced. The file is compatible with XboX360, AppleTV, PS3 and Vimeo HD.

If you want to use Mencoder/Mplayer instead, use this:
mencoder INPUT.m2t -aspect 16:9 -of lavf -lavfopts format=psp -oac lavc -ovc lavc -lavcopts
aglobal=1:vglobal=1:coder=0:vcodec=libx264:acodec=libfaac:vbitrate=4500:abitrate=128 -vf scale=1280:720 -ofps 30000/1001 -o OUTPUT.mp4

Use “25” frame rate for 25p PAL, or “24000/1001” for 24p (without quotes), instead of the suggested NTSC 30000/1001 if required. Also modify the input filename, of course.

Finally, on Windows you can use HDVSplit to capture the footage, and then use the “SUPER” application (alternative download server here) like this in XViD format to encode for Vimeo HD. The “SUPER” application can also create h.264 videos too if that’s what you prefer: here’s how.

Exporting with Windows Movie Maker HD in 720p

To export your HD/HDV footage from Windows Movie Maker in 720p you need to own the Vista Premium/Ultimate versions. All the other Windows versions only support plain DV, not HD. So, first you need to install the Windows Media Encoder 9, create a profile and save it on Movie Maker’s profiles folder, then edit as usual, and then export using that profile. Visual guide here. The file is compatible with Vimeo HD and XboX360. Microsoft might already have some 720p HD profiles btw (I can’t test this as I only own the “Basic” version of Vista), so have a look around for that first on Movie Maker’s exporting dialogs before going ahead with this tutorial.

Exporting with Magix Movie Edit Pro in 720p

To export in 720p with Magix Movie Edit Pro 12, load your footage on to the editor, set the project settings to HD/HDV with the appropriate frame rate, edit, and then export like this. The only change you might need to do is to select either PAL’s 25 fps instead of the suggested NTSC’s 29.97 frame rate, or 23.976 if you shot in 24p mode (when pulldown is removed). If you shot in default mode with an NTSC camera, leave the frame rate unchanged. The file is compatible with Vimeo HD, Sony PS3 and XboX360.

Exporting with Quicktime in 720p

This is a guide on how to export using Quicktime Pro (PC or Mac), iMovie, Final Cut Express or Final Cut Studio using the Quicktime Component. First, make sure your project’s properties is correctly set to HDV or HD with the right frame rate and aspect ratio, and then edit as usual. At the end, select “export” (it’s probably called either “export” or “advanced” on the new iMovie ’08) and select one of the two methods.

1. This Quicktime export creates .mov h.264 files. This method has good options, but it crashes frequently when you click “Settings” to configure your video (for me, this crash is reproducible on both my Mac and my PC). However, you might get lucky. Uncheck de-interlacing if your footage is not interlaced.

2. This MPEG-4 export creates .mp4 h.264 files and it’s easier to use, but it does not have a de-interlacing option (which might leave “jaggies” on your video), and it occassionally creates a “tick” on the picture (a keyframing bug that Apple hasn’t bothered to fix for over a year now).

Between the two options, I would go with the first one if it doesn’t crash for you. The only change you might need to do is to select either PAL’s 25 fps instead of the suggested NTSC’s 29.97, or 23.976 if you shot in 24p mode (note: iMovie and Final Cut Express don’t support native 24p editing). That’s it, now sit back while your video is encoding and after a while you will be having a progressive 720p file for usage with Vimeo/Youtube HD, or AppleTV (.mov/.mp4), and the XboX360 or the PS3 (.mp4 only).

Warning: Apple’s Quicktime has a stupid bug for over a year now, where de-interlacing just doesn’t work, even if you tell it to. In that case, or if you are using iMovie ’09, check this guide.

Exporting with Adobe Premiere in 720p

A few weeks ago I wrote a guide on how to export in 720p from Sony Vegas, so here’s a guide for Premiere. The exporting is similar for Premiere and After Effects. First, make sure your project’s properties is correctly set to HDV or HD with the right frame rate and aspect ratio, and then edit as usual. It’s your responsibility to know what kind of attributes your camera uses in its recorded format (although you can easily check this out after importing a file from your camera to Premiere and checking its properties).

CS2/3

After you edited your footage, click “Export”, “Adobe Media Encoder”. If you are using a non-Elements application (e.g. Pro, After Effects) use this guide, a method donated by Vimeo user Myksto. Modify the exporting option for the frame rate to reflect your source footage (e.g. if you are on 25fps PAL on 29.97fps NTSC or 23.976 for 24p).

If you are using CS2 and native 24p HDV, you need to install this preset to choose in your sequence properties (CS3/4 already supports it). If your footage is PF24 instead (24p wrapped in 60i, like in most consumer Canon HD cameras), then you need to remove pulldown before editing and exporting in 24p (this is needed for all CS versions).

CS4/CS5

The exporting method for Premiere/AfterEffects CS4 is pretty much the same as above, but here it is again with a bit more explanation, and in English this time. Check it out here. If you want a bit more quality, change the suggested bitrate from 5 mbps to 10 mbps, and max bitrate from 8 mbps to 20 mbps.

Elements

If you are using Elements 4, click on “Share” and select the “Personal Computer” option on Elements and then “Quicktime”, then click “Advanced” and customize the exporting dialogs like this for .mov h.264 on Elements (recommended method), or like this for WMV (unfortunately, the WMV exporting dialog on Elements does not have an option for progressive/de-interlacing though). The only change you might need to do is to select PAL’s 25 fps instead of the suggested NTSC’s 29.97 if your camera is PAL. If you shot in default mode with an NTSC camera, leave the frame rate unchanged. Elements doesn’t support 24p editing, so exporting in 24p would be a mistake (although there is a 24p hack that works with Elements too).

Conclusion

That’s it, now sit back while your video is encoding and after a while you will be having a progressive 720p file for usage with Vimeo, YouTube, PS3, XboX360 (up to 30p exports), and the AppleTV (up to 25p only). If you used Elements, the XBoX360/PS3 won’t playback the h.264 file (MOV container incompatibility), but only the WMV one. If you used CS2/3/4, they will play both the MP4 h.264 and the WMV because the professional versions of Adobe allow you to choose a different MP4 mode that works with the PS3.