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Nov 18, 2013 10:04 PM



Sorry for the lengthy question.


I recently downloaded a short clip from YouTube here:


GSpot tells me that the codecs (MPEG2 for video and  MPEG-1 Layer 2 for audio) are installed, and that the frame size is 640 wide x 360 high. The frame rate is 25.000 per sec. Other audio details include 44100Hz  192 kb/s tot , Stereo. Then I open up MediaInfo and while it does not inform me that this is a PAL clip or not, at 25fps I am guessing that it is. These are the clips's other properties:

Name: Helena screen test.mpg




MPEG Video

BitRate is 1 193

Frame is 640px wide x 360px high.


Display aspect ratio: 16:9

Bit depth: 8 bits

Scan type: Progressive

Compression mode: Lossy



MPEG Audio

Bit rate: 192 Kbps

Channel(s): 2 channels

Sampling rate: 44.1 KHz

Compression mode: Lossy

I now wish to edit the video, so I open up Premiere Elements 11 and go to File | New Project and in 'Project Settings' I try to match the clip's properties that I know about from GSpot and MediaInfo with the settings I am about to assign to my project. Thus, I ignore NTSC completely since my clip runs at 25fps. On the other hand, there is no PAL setting in Elements 11 that corresponds exactly to my clip's 640 x 360 frame-size properties.


Eventually, I choose PAL | DV Standard 48kHz (not my desired 44.1kHz) which has a frame rate of 25 fps and a frame size of 720 x 576 (and not my desired 640 x 360). However, if I have understood correctly the clip itself obliges Elements 11 to accept its own properties once it is on the Timeline.


I think that's right?


I click OK to the PAL | DV Standard settings on the 'Change Settings' dialogue box and leave unticked the 'Force selected Project Setting on this project' because I don't want to impose different properties on my clip.


I click on 'Add Media' and drag my clip to the Timeline. I go to Edit | Preferences | General and ensure that 'Default frame to scale size' is ticked. So far so good. Now for the confusing part: I go to Edit | Project Settings | General and see that although my clip is on the Timeline and despite not having ticked the 'Force selected Project Setting on this project' (in my Presettings), Elements sees my clip as having a 720 x 576 frame-size and not a 640 x 360 frame-size which is really what it is (screenshot).


Project Settings Helena.jpg

On the other hand, if I go to File | Get Properties for.... | Selection with my clip still on the Timeline, the Properties dialogue box tells me that my clip has a frame-size not of 720px x 576px as 'Project Settings' has informed me, but of 640px x 360px! (screenshot).



Properties Helena.jpg




It seems that Elements 11 is trying to dictate the properties of my clip, rather than the clip determining the settings in Elements 11. The two lots of settings are inconsistent in that the clip's properties do not correspond to the settings in Elements 11.

Be that as it may, I add a couple of transitions to the clip and I'm now ready to Publish+Share it. I choose 'Computer' and then MPEG, and then under 'Presets' I choose PAL DVD Standard. I can see immediately that the project will be saved with settings that do not correspond to the clip's original properties. The frame rate is the same but the frame size at 720x576 is not; neither is the audio setting of 48kHz (the
original is 44.1kHz) (screenshot).


MPEG settings_Helena.jpg


I click on 'Advanced'. Under 'Video', I set 'Quality' to 5, leave TV Standard at PAL, frame-rate at 25, 'Field Order' at Lower, and 'Pixel Aspect Ratio' at 4.3 (1.094). I don't understand the Bitrate or GOP Settings so I leave them as they are. I change the 'Preset' field of 'Export Settings' from Custom to PAL DVD Standard. I can see that the frame-size is 720x576, but it is greyed-out so I couldn't alter it even
if I wanted to.


Under 'Audio' I leave 'Audio Format' at Dolby Digital and the 'Preset' at PAL DVD Standard. The Bitrate is set at 192 which corresponds to the original clip's audio properties, so I leave it at that.


As it happens the clip turned out very well - I can detect no difference between my clip and the one I downloaded from YouTube - but what I wanted to ask was, despite the 'lack of correspondence' between original and exported settings, is my methodology - the way I am going about processing the clip - a reasonable one? Is that the way it is supposed to be done? Furthermore, is it true to say that since my final exported clip looks just fine, that settings do not NEED to correspond exactly?


Sorry again for the lengthy nature of the question.


Many thanks



  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 18, 2013 10:13 PM   in reply to SteveH59



    It is just after 1 am where I am so I will go through the details with you in a few hours in the morning here.


    Lots to talk about.


    How do you want to export this Timeline once we have established the project settings?


    Are you aiming for the same properties as the original file? In other words, do you want to end up with a 640 x 360 16:9 video @ 25 progressive frames per second or other?


    I will go through this step wise.


    More soon.



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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 19, 2013 10:26 AM   in reply to SteveH59



    I am not going to proceed on specifics based to your source. Rather I am going to generalize....


    1. Given you have video that is characterized by

    Frame Height 640

    Frame Width 360

    Frame Rate 25 progressive frames per second

    This video is 16:9 for display purpose due to its frame dimensions and does not need a 16:9 flag to stretch it for display after encoding.


    2. Open Premiere Elements 11 and set the project preset manually for



    AVCHD LITE 720p25

    (remember to put the check mark next to "Force Selected Project Settings On This Project" before exiting the new project dialog)


    3. Back in the Premiere Elements Workspace, you can leave "Default Scale to Frame Size" active in preferences.

    Import your video into the project using Add Media/Files and Folders/Project Assets from where you drag the video to the Expert workspace monitor.


    4. When it comes to export, we are going to export the Timeline to match the properties of the import as close as possible, using




    with Presets = PAL DV Widescreen


    But we are going to change the export settings under the Advanced Button/Video Tab



    The targets for your adjusts are going to be Frame Width, Frame Height, Field Order, Pixel Aspect Ratio, Profile, and Level. Leave everything else as is for now. (If you have any problems typing in the frame size, click the link between frame width and height to release the link.)


    The end result of the export should be a 640 x 360 @ 25 frames per second H.264 AAC.mp4.


    Please review and give it a try and then, if necessary, I will go through the reasons for my path choices.






    Add On...Please watch for an Adobe Private Message from me.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 19, 2013 6:23 PM   in reply to SteveH59



    The key to my approach was recognizing that 640 x 360 was 16:9 just from its frame size as compared to PAL DV Widescreen which is based on taking a 4:3 frame size and stretching it to 16:9 with a 16:9 flag. Another consideration was the factor that the frame rate (25 frames per second) was a progressive one rather than an interlaced one. What to do?


    I took the closest 16:9 project preset with a frame rate of 25 progressive frames per second. That turned out to be



    True, that was going to present in the Edit Mode monitor in a 1280 x 720 16:9, but it had two major ingredients 16:9 and I maintained the progressive frame rate of 25 frames per second. The choice of 1280 x 720 did not compromise anything since I was going to be depending on my export settings. All of the above was based on weighing all factors as I saw them.


    Now for the export said, I was targeting for as close as I could come to the original

    640 x 360


    25 progressive frames per second

    and a good quality AVCHD.mp4 could be obtained with adjusts of a preset under Publish+Share/Computer/AVCHD


    You wrote

    Is there something in the original clip's settings (frame-size of 640 x 360) that indicate to you that the clip should be saved as a widescreen clip?

    The fact that 640 x 360 (square pixels) is 16:9 (which is characteristic of widescreen)


    When you have time, check out the following article on Pixel Aspect ratio.

    to check out the difference between non square and square pixels.

    The story goes deeper, but I am not sure that we need to go there yet. But let us see how you do with the above.


    If you still need clarification on anything that I have written, do not hesitate to ask.





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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 19, 2013 8:02 PM   in reply to SteveH59



    Here is the ultimate article for understanding interlaced and progressive video. See if you agree.


    The more you go into these matters the deeper and deeper it gets.


    Something to think about...for DV Standard, why is 720 x 480 (NTSC) and 720 x 576 (PAL) referred to as 4:3 when the frame aspect ratio is not exactly 4:3? Hint: this is a non square and square pixel matter.



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