4.3 to 16.9

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stoo
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ok this is to me is a stupid question but I have a client that's adamant that I'm wrong so here we go.

I've been asked to convert a 4.3 clip to 16.9 I've explained there's 3 ways of doing this. I've also made rectangles out of paper to aid the explanation but there still adamant I'm wrong.

I've told them there's 3 ways of doing it.

1 add vertical bars the sides of the image so it has the correct aspect ratio

2 stretch the image so it fits the 16.9 shape

3 use pan and scan to zoom in on the image to fill the 16.9 window

any comments welcome!

fuddam
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use a bigger club

Richard Loxley
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2a - use a non-linear stretch (this is what many 16x9 TV sets use in 'smart' mode)

This might be what the client is thinking of. Looks really naff in my opinion, but I have come across so many ordinary people who prefer it to 4x3.

Haven't come across a filter in NLE software to do it, mind you. Probably for the best :-)

stoo
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I need one!

mooblie
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For which NLE, Stoo?

Martin - DVdoctor in moderation. Everyone is entitled to my opinion.

infocus
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stoo wrote:
I've told them there's 3 ways of doing it.

Yes to 1 and 3, but I wouldn't go for 2 - it distorts the shape. There is another way though, and may be "favourite" amongst broadcasters. Quite simply, it's halfway between 1 & 2 - expand the 4:3 rectangle (but don't distort the shape) so the top and bottom are lost, but horizontally it fills 14/16 of the 16:9 frame. Hence it is a 14:9 active picture with 1:9 black bars each side.

Compared to your example 1 the side bars are not as noticeable, compared to 3 the amount cut off is far less noticeable. Broadcasters like it because for analogue transmissions (14:9 letterbox in a 4:3 frame) no more information gets lost - the aspect ratio convertors turn 14:9 pillarbox into 14:9 letterbox!!

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/14:9

Alan Roberts
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All correct. If you want to keep the shapes right, then 1 and 3 will do. 2 is wrong, and the "cylindrical projection" trick that stretches the edges out just looks naff.

If you need a bigger baseball bat, I suggest you get one soon; you're right, he's wrong.

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tom hardwick
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I don't agree. If you've been asked to convert a 4.3 clip to 16.9 then answer 1 wil give you square (1:1) images, rather than 16:9 images.

I'd ignore 2 because we have enough distortions in our life as it is.

tom.

stoo
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thanks for all the feedback...

I will be investing in a bat soon....

infocus
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Out of curiosity, what does your client think the "other way" is?

Alan Roberts
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Indeed, I was wondering that as well.

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Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

Bob Aldis
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I suspect he is thinking of method 2 but not aware of the distortions. I know many people who watch 4x3 on a 16x9 screen and are quite oblivious to the problem.
My son has a really good eye for pixelation and artifacts and can spot any little defect on a screen but is a bit baffled by my insistance on the aspect ratio being right.

BobA

Bob Aldis

mooblie
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I too always find this "blindness" to aspect ratio distortion baffling.

Many here (who should know better) display even 4:3 video clips on their website at 5:4, as they do not compensate for video pixels being rectangular. They simply scale down the 720x576 PAL pixels, assuming they're square.

You know who you are! (And if if you don't realise: then you're one of them too! :D )

Martin - DVdoctor in moderation. Everyone is entitled to my opinion.

infocus
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Bob Aldis wrote:
I suspect he is thinking of method 2 ..........

Mmmm, but stoo originally said that "method 2" was one of the ways he'd said he COULD do it.

Bob Aldis
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infocus wrote:
Mmmm, but stoo originally said that "method 2" was one of the ways he'd said he COULD do it.

Yes but without knowing the exact conversation I thought that he (the customer) may have seen examples of method 2 and been unaware of the distortion. Then when told that this method would produce distortion, assume that it was not what he had seen.

Does that make sense? I know what I mean anyway. :)

BobA

Bob Aldis

Alan Roberts
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Yes, I know what you mean.

I was in a bar in Belfast, kitted with big 16x9 panels showing News24. The picture filled the screen, but the scrolling news filled the width. Clearly, the decoder had been set to send the pictures to a 4x3 display, and ther panels had been set to cylindrical distortion. Really wierd. The worry that this was Morrissons, just outside BH, favoured haunt of many BBC people (and serves really nice Guinness).

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

stoo
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the client basically told us that he had made a video before and that it defiantly was possible. he told us to use tempeg encoder.

Alan Roberts
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Don't care what the coder was, the maths is still the same.

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

stoo
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we did explain this but he was having none of it

robo
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stoo wrote:
we did explain this but he was having none of it

perhaps it's time to explain that the longer, narrower version would be considerably less painful on insertion than the square one. ;)

robo

Chrome
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OK, I think we're all agreed the customer is wrong, ever so wrong and none of us want to deliver our footage skewed or incorrectly displayed.

BUT - if the customer insists, and this is what stands between delivery of project and getting paid, why not simply give him what he wants? HE is the customer regardless whether he's right or wrong. Hopefully he will be happy and you will (presumably) get paid. After all he is commissioning you, so it's his brief you should meet. If he wanted it delivered upside down, in sepia with subtitles in klingon then perhaps that's what he should get. However make sure he knows if he subsequently decides he might prefer it another way, there will be additional fees charged. If you argue with a customer too much you certainly will compromise being commissioned again; regardless how good your work is.

I regularly incorporate stretched 4:3 footage into otherwise 16:9 edits for one of my large household-name corporate clients, they want it that way, they are are happy with it that way, and I get paid for doing it... bugger the artistic integrity. :)

Rob James
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Chrome wrote:
I regularly incorporate stretched 4:3 footage into otherwise 16:9 edits for one of my large household-name corporate clients, they want it that way, they are are happy with it that way, and I get paid for doing it... bugger the artistic integrity. :)

Hear, hear! This is no time to worry about artistic integrity. It may offend you and many others but that really isn't the point. You don't have to put the offending footage in your showreel after all.

Rob The picture is only there to keep the sound in sync

Alan Roberts
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You need the baseball bat.

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

Wicked
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Due to the credit crunch I am currently branching out and currently sell a very reasonable baseball bat for £3,497 plus VAT. PM me if interested.....:D

infocus
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stoo wrote:
the client basically told us that he had made a video before and that it defiantly was possible. he told us to use tempeg encoder.

Errrr, but I'm still not clear what "it" is that he thinks is possible. (And isn't covered by your original 1 to 3.)

You seem to be offering every possible combination - either all of original with correct shape and black bars, cropped to fill frame, and use all to fill, and lose correct shape. (OK, there's the 14:9 option, as used by the BBC, but that's halfway between 1 & 3.

Is he saying that you can not crop, not have black bars, and must keep the right shape?

Because that is impossible..........

Dave R Smith
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Chrome wrote:
...., why not simply give him what he wants? HE is the customer regardless whether he's right or wrong. .... After all he is commissioning

If I've read this thread correctly, every permutation has been put to him and he's said no it's something else.. so how do you deliver what isn't defined and outside the realm of the known universe?;)

'After all he is commissioning '
My own view differs. If something is not suited to a project for whatever reason, client is typically relying on me to advise. We're commissioned for our experience not to be a 'yes man'.

Alan Roberts
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And that's where the baseball bat comes in :D

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

Rob James
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Or possibly diplomacy. A quick sample of the available options with a discussion is often the best way to go. :)

You can always attempt to educate your client. If you fail and he/she still wants something innapropriate, well, they are paying the bill. (or not)

Rob The picture is only there to keep the sound in sync

Chrome
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Dave R Smith wrote:
We're commissioned for our experience not to be a 'yes man'.

They rely on my expertise and experience heavily, I'm certainly NOT a 'yes man' Dave, never have been, so resent your inference.

However there is only so far that you can take the education of a client... you often still need to meet their brief (if they have given one and even know what they want!). If they continue to insist that it's done another way then continuing to argue with them may be very counter productive as Rob reiterates in the last post. I have one client that has had work done by another fairly local firm and always comes to us now because of the constant hassle that they had with this particular chap.

Some of my clients still give me complete freedom of artistic expression which is very nice...

stoo
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Thanks to all of you for posting. Basically we were dealing with someone who was being instructed on what to tell us. We did explain to this person all the flatus and he totally agreed however the person telling him to tell us what to do didn’t.

My take on is I go out of my way to inform the client on how I think something should be done. I will also do my best to explain the consequence of not doing what I’m suggesting but ultimately they are paying and they will get what they pay for so in the end we produced the DVD and as they instructed.

Dave R Smith
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Chrome wrote:
They rely on my expertise and experience heavily, I'm certainly NOT a 'yes man' Dave, never have been, so resent your inference.

However there is only so far that you can take the education of a client... you often still need to meet their brief (if they have given one and even know what they want!). If they continue to insist that it's done another way then continuing to argue with them may be very counter productive as Rob reiterates in the last post. I have one client that has had work done by another fairly local firm and always comes to us now because of the constant hassle that they had with this particular chap.

Some of my clients still give me complete freedom of artistic expression which is very nice...

Hi Chrome,
Gulp.
I know you are highly experienced, so was surprised at your comment.

Talking in the wider context, not specifically 16:9/4:3 conversion:
1)If a product is to go out with a producers name on it, we have to be happy that it's not detrmimental to future business, with same or other clients.
2)As you say, we also have to meet the client brief and meet contractual commitments.

I want to apologise for causing you to resent my comment.
I read your post as 2) above without regard for 1) above.
So I'm now not sure what you are saying.

To cause you resentment is the last thing I want.
Please, either reply here, PM me or phone me (tel no via website).

Alan Roberts
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I'm sure no slight was intended either way, and ho harm done.

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

infocus
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stoo wrote:
............ in the end we produced the DVD and as they instructed.

I'm still curious to know how that was?

As Dave R Smith put it: "If I've read this thread correctly, every permutation has been put to him and he's said no it's something else...."

So how did the DVD get produced?

StevenBagley
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infocus wrote:
Errrr, but I'm still not clear what "it" is that he thinks is possible. (And isn't covered by your original 1 to 3.)

You seem to be offering every possible combination - either all of original with correct shape and black bars, cropped to fill frame, and use all to fill, and lose correct shape. (OK, there's the 14:9 option, as used by the BBC, but that's halfway between 1 & 3.

Is he saying that you can not crop, not have black bars, and must keep the right shape?

Because that is impossible..........

Not impossible -- just very very difficult. Theoretically, if the shot is static it might be possible to paint an additional background in (or if there is a pan or zoom grab bits from other frames to fill the gaps).

Steven

Chrome
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Dave R Smith wrote:
I want to apologise for causing you to resent my comment.

No worries Dave... result of a VERY long day editing, late night (still not been to bed!) and when I saw what appeared to say I was a 'yes man'... I just saw red; so sorry for that too... I'm over it.

I know what your saying about reputation and having your name/credit on something. Many times in the corporate world though, the end viewer watching your loop in a car dealership or on a projected large screen at an event is completely unaware of (or not even remotely interested in) the producer.

That being said we rarely 'stretch' any clips with people in them; that's a bit of a no-no; I do a lot of work with Lewis Hamilton and I'm sure he would not be too happy if I made him look fat. :D

Dave R Smith
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Phew. Thank-you Chrome - I'm pleased we're back to square one - sharing like views.
It's a pity Lewis dosn't also see 'Red' on occasions.. if you know what I mean.;)

Alan Roberts
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Yep, I'd still like to know what the original requester's process was for converting then aspect ratio. As has been said several times, we've listed all the possibilities, so if it wasn't one of them, then........

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

Richard Loxley
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I've just remembered another technique which I saw used on a TV documentary (inserting a small amount of 4x3 footage into an otherwise 16x9 broadcast)...

They appeared to take the 4x3 picture, linearly stretched it across the 16x9, and applied some form of blur filter. Then they overlaid the (non-blurred) 4x3 picture in the middle. So basically instead of black bars at the side, they had a blurred continuation of the picture to fill the frame.

It was an interesting compromise that didn't look too unpleasant.

DAVE M
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I think Alan R's suggested that before - as you say a way of mixing 4x3 with 16:9 (why do we write it like that?) footage.

You see it often on Cop Clip kind of shows where they're mixing footage

Alan Roberts
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Yep, it's a good trick that fills the screen but keeps circles circular. And pretty easy to do too.

Get my test cards document, and cards for 625, 525, 720 and 1080. Thanks to Gavin Gration for hosting them.
Camera settings documents are held by Daniel Browning and at the EBU
My book, 'Circles of Confusion' is available here.
Also EBU Tech.3335 tells how to test cameras, and R.118 tells how to use the results.

Olespice
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. . . . and we still don't know how it was eventually accomplished?

Ah - got it, he used the bat on the other bloke .... !

stoo
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We tried for one final time to explain the options in a way we hoped he would understand. He was instant it could be done in tempeg so we did it in after effects. We just zoomed into the pic until it appeared to fill the screen.
We didn’t like it we thought it was poo
He liked it and had convinced himself he had told us how to do it
There is no trace that we have worked on this project.

Nintembo
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Richard Loxley wrote:
I've just remembered another technique which I saw used on a TV documentary (inserting a small amount of 4x3 footage into an otherwise 16x9 broadcast)...

They appeared to take the 4x3 picture, linearly stretched it across the 16x9, and applied some form of blur filter. Then they overlaid the (non-blurred) 4x3 picture in the middle. So basically instead of black bars at the side, they had a blurred continuation of the picture to fill the frame.

It was an interesting compromise that didn't look too unpleasant.

This was posted in 2008, now on the eve of 2012 (happy new year everybody by the way!) its a lot more common, and I think it does look nice for certain content generally in the entertainment field (I've seen it used on a few history programmes, and with certain footage it looks odd, and I believe black bars would be classier, but hey)

Anyhow, I've found myself in a funny situation. I'm working in CS5, SD widescreen project (PAL) and I have written permission to use footage from a DVD sold in America (I can't be supplied the tapes as the master doesn't exist any more!)

So I bought the disc, and its Region 0 encoded.

I extracted the disc and put it on the timeline, it detected a frame rate of 29.9. Firstly, will it cause me problems to mix frame rates within a timeline?

Secondly, and point in question: the footage I now have has black bars top and bottom, and at both sides. The bars top and bottom I can eliminate by fitting the clip to frame. However I'd love to use the above effect to fill out the sides. Does anybody know whether this effect lives within the CS5 base programme? I've tried searching the programme / internet but I couldn't find it.

Nin

harlequin
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I would convert the footage to pal dv avi , and add to timeline , at which point all footage will be same resolution and framerate.

Gary MacKenzie

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Ben Longden
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stoo wrote:
We tried for one final time to explain the options in a way we hoped he would understand. He was instant it could be done in tempeg so we did it in after effects. We just zoomed into the pic until it appeared to fill the screen.
We didn’t like it we thought it was poo
He liked it and had convinced himself he had told us how to do it
There is no trace that we have worked on this project.

In other words, he adopted one of your original options, but was too thick to know it. :eek:

Perhaps some percussive maintenance with the bat may increase his IQ.

Nintembo
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Nintembo wrote:

Secondly, and point in question: the footage I now have has black bars top and bottom, and at both sides. The bars top and bottom I can eliminate by fitting the clip to frame. However I'd love to use the above effect to fill out the sides. Does anybody know whether this effect lives within the CS5 base programme? I've tried searching the programme / internet but I couldn't find it.

Nin

Thanks for conversion advise.

Does anybody know the answer to the above?

Nintembo
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harlequin wrote:
I would convert the footage to pal dv avi , and add to timeline , at which point all footage will be same resolution and framerate.

Rather than look into getting a dedicated video converter, do you think it would be a good idea to open up a new project, NTSC, 4:3 (which is what the disc is) and put all of the footage on the timeline.

From there export as PAL, DV, 4:3, 25fps, making the video source something which would then fit in the existing (good) project sequence?

Ben Longden
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Vegas is format agnostic, even handling NTSC and PAL vision on the same project.

Works for me.

harlequin
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Ben Longden wrote:
Vegas is format agnostic, even handling NTSC and PAL vision on the same project.

Works for me.

But Nintembo is using ADOBE PREMIERE

Gary MacKenzie

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Nintembo
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The sides have now been blurred, and I think the 4:3 footage now looks lovely in the 16:9 timeline...

Just need to work out this file conversion issue now and I'll gain some serious headway.

Nintembo
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Nintembo wrote:
Rather than look into getting a dedicated video converter, do you think it would be a good idea to open up a new project, NTSC, 4:3 (which is what the disc is) and put all of the footage on the timeline.

From there export as PAL, DV, 4:3, 25fps, making the video source something which would then fit in the existing (good) project sequence?

And when I say video source, I mean the newly exported AVI file...

Ben Longden
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Excellent!

Nintembo
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Thanks Ben, I'll do this tonight.

Nintembo
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Guys just about to export my editing NTSC sequence.

Would you recommend "frame blending" I believe its where the software tries to smooth out the frame rate change.

Cheers,

Nin

Ben Longden
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Not being familiar with your NLE, do you have an NTSC option in the render?
Going from PAL AVI to NTSC MPEG should be okay.

Nintembo
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It's the other way round Ben. The files are NTSC. I've created an NTSC sequence and I'll be exporting as pal to put in my pal project. On the export setting it prompts whether you want to blend frames, just wondering if advisable in other posters experience.

DAVE M
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I've never done it but as NTSC is 30fps and PAL is 25fps, you'll bung away 5fps.

When using cheap conversion boxes, this results in a small jump as the redundant frames are dropped. I assume that blending will reduce the issue.

Why not export a few mins in both ways and look?

Nintembo
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Yeah I'll do a comparison when home and report back. Thought I'd touch base in case one was a waste of time as it will take an hour to encode.

DAVE M
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you don't need to encode the whole thing.
not for a test

Nintembo
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Exported last night with the frame blending selected, and the footage runs very smooth, so I'm very happy with this now in my PAL timeline.

harlequin
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Nintembo wrote:
Exported last night with the frame blending selected, and the footage runs very smooth, so I'm very happy with this now in my PAL timeline.

So you now have NTSC footage converted to PAL , now on a PAL timeline ?

Exactly what i suggested.

Gary MacKenzie

sepulce@hotmail.com ( an account only used for forum messages )

Thinkserver TS140 , 750ti Graphics card  & LG 27" uws led backlight , Edius 8

Humax Foxsat HD Pvr / Humax Fox T2 dvbt

Nintembo
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harlequin wrote:
So you now have NTSC footage converted to PAL , now on a PAL timeline ?

Exactly what i suggested.

Yes mate : )