7 Replies Latest reply on Jan 22, 2013 7:02 AM by Axel Matt

    Panasonic AVCHD HA format HDC-SD900


      I've read many posts around this topic but I remain unsure about the formats to use when editing and exporting. Despite years of home editing with Premier Pro.

      Current Environment is CS6 , Panasonic HDC-SD900 camera. Recording in HA mode.     UK.   PAL mode.   Laptop Dell.  8Gig RAM. W7.  GE Force GT555M gaphics card.


      My issue is marrying up the formats of the original recordings and keeping the quality in my epxorted editied 'sequences'. 
      SO several questions...
      Just what are the characteristics of Panasonics AVCHD HA  -  I know its  1920*1080 ,  17Mbs VBR.  But ....

      Is it Anaorphic or not ?

      Is it Interlaced or not ?

      Is it Square Pixels or not ?

      What Sequence settings should I use for editiing ?


      My Requirements.

      To be able to edit  footage (in CS6) and export edited "SEQUENCES"  (via Media Encoder 6) in the closest format to orginal recorded so that I have a  "MASTER version of the Sequence, that is also viewable in PC players.   Eg. an  .mp4  (in H264 format - if that is the best)
      I want to be able to select and view these "Sequences" from a HDD  (eg NAS or laptopn) for playback on PC, Laptop or streamed to a HD TV  via DLNA or whatever... 


      I also want to be able to use these same MASTER Sequences, import them into ENCORE 6,  to create Blu-Ray Disc in the future. 


      I currently output the sequences as M2v for DVD creation.  So all is fine there.  Cant avoid that quality drop.


      My problem.

      If I view the edited sequence (based on the 1080i 25 preset I am currently using), via Media Player, then pausing a moving (panning) camera shot of people  will show a paused image with each individual person having a ghost shadow of themselves.  Whereas if I play the original AVCHD clip then a paused screen at the same spot shows an perfect clear  quality image. No ghosting.

      Where am I losing the quality ? 



        • 1. Re: Panasonic AVCHD HA format HDC-SD900
          Harm Millaard Level 7

          Is it Anaorphic or not ? No.

          Is it Interlaced or not ? Whatever you shot. You should know. You set the camera.

          Is it Square Pixels or not ? Yes.

          What Sequence settings should I use for editiing ? If you don't know, import some footage and right click on a clip and use "New Sequence from Clip"


          In your playback settings, use Display First Field or Display Second Field, not both. And set playback resolution to Full.

          • 2. Re: Panasonic AVCHD HA format HDC-SD900
            Quofiend Level 1

            Thx for reply.

            Re: Interlaced ... .  I selected "HA1920" on the camera. I cannot get any other info/detail on the camera. The manual is very unclear.

            In one section it states



            Recording format:

            [1080/50p]; Original format - (which I guess is the iFrame option I am not using)

            [HA]/[HG]/[HX]/[HE]; AVCHD format compliant

            [iFrame]; MPEG-4 AVC file format complaint (.MP4)


            Then later in another section it refers to Picture Size as...

            "[HA]/[HG]/[HX]/[HE]; 1920k1080/50i"


            which, from what I can tell from reading is actually the "1080i 25 (50i)" setting in "Sequence Settings".  Yes  ?   This has always confused me.  It seems that depending on how the 50i is used it can mean 25.

            HEnce my questions... seeking clarification.


            Re:Pixels Cheers... just realised ratio of 1:1 is square pixels. DOH !!


            Sequence setting - Yes...  I've used "New Sequence from clip"  Thx... That also selects "1080 25"  but the "sequence properties" pane doesnt tell you if it is 'interlaced or progressive"  - hence my question. Just trying to double check things... because I am losign quality somewhere...

            maybe I'm missing something obvious... I hope so.


            For Playback.. I mentioned I am using Media Player as a test. Not CS6. But yes..... have 'first' set in the export.

            • 3. Re: Panasonic AVCHD HA format HDC-SD900
              Quofiend Level 1
              Here is an example of a  PAUSED image on playback (in Media Player) that shows the difference in quality. I think.
              LEFT is the original MTS file.   (AVCHD HA920) format.  on the RIGHT is the same shot from the  exported H264 1080i 25  preset format.
              The original plays wit smooth movement....  the edited exported on the right is difficult to follow as the camera pans.   NOTE: THIS IS NOT ABOUT SPEED of playback.Both playback perfectly well in terms of performance. 



              • 4. Re: Panasonic AVCHD HA format HDC-SD900
                Andrew_S Level 3

                Just to confuse you more, 1080/50i and 1080i25 are the same thing! 1080p50 is different. I have looked at the manual and this camcorder records in both i and p modes. I'm referring to the page in the manual "Recording modes/ approximate recordable time". HA mode can be 1080i25 (108050i) or 1080/50p depending if you selected the 50p mode. The recording time is significantly less in 50p that 50i which makes me think it really is 50p, IE 50 frames per second of 1920 x 1080, rather then the normal 1920 x 1080 25 frames per second interlaced mode, where each frame consist of two fields each 1920 x 540 pixels.


                So if you have shot 50p and try to export to 25i you will get an interlaced output as two p frames = one i frame. If you are only interested in computer playback, then keep the frame rate at 50p for any export file. Some TV's will accept 50p (rather than the normal 25i - in PAL land that is) so even they may display 50p files OK. Otherwise its a 25p export you want.


                If you shoot 25 interlaced, keep it at interlaced for TV's but export to 25p for computer use.

                • 5. Re: Panasonic AVCHD HA format HDC-SD900
                  Quofiend Level 1

                  I realise the camera can record in 1080p50.  This is selected by  physical Button on the camera.  That is its highest setting. But I AM NOT using this.


                  I am recording in HA 1920 setting. Its not clear what this mode properties are. It is settable on the touch screen menu (and greyed out if/when the 1080p50 mode is selected).  
                  Bringin me back to one of my initial questions...  is HA 1920  interlaced or progressive.  I can find no way of determining this other than PPro will select 1080i25 if I leave it to decide the 'sequence settings' for the m2ts clip.


                  As a test....

                  I tried creating a 'sequence' in PPro CS6 at 50p mode but, as expected, when I drag my HA1920 .m2ts clip into it, it tells me the sequence settings do not match.


                  I accepted the settings that PPro auto sets up... (1080i25) for the 'sequence' and then I exported  using H.264 / "HD 1080p 25" preset. It seems to solve the issue. 

                  i.e. Its' easier to watch a panning shot and it pauses with a perfect image (unlike the image above).

                  THIS IS PROGRESS....  THanks.



                  Having the Ppro "Sequence" settiings at 1080p25 ALSO seem to give excellent results when exported at H.264 / "HD 1080p 25". Same output quality. No blurring and identical file sizes.


                  So this leaves me still slightly confused. What is the difference in edit mode ? Does it actually matter for editing and is it all in the export mode used?


                  I'd just like to ensure that I edit and export in a mode that is as close to shoot quality and minimal conversion/degradation/recoding or whatever, from the original M2TS file.


                  Still slightly confused but thanks for the help..

                  • 6. Re: Panasonic AVCHD HA format HDC-SD900
                    Andrew_S Level 3

                    Have you tried right clicking on a clip in the project window and selecting the properties from the pop up menu? You can also select "new sequence from clip" from the same pop up menu and see what premiere does.

                    • 7. Re: Panasonic AVCHD HA format HDC-SD900
                      Axel Matt Adobe Community Professional

                      Quofiend wrote:


                      Bringin me back to one of my initial questions...  is HA 1920  interlaced or progressive.




                      I've been using the HDC-SD909 and I take a look to the technical data into the instruction manual.


                      The HA mode is interlaced 1920x1080i50


                      Hope it's help