9 Replies Latest reply on Jun 19, 2013 10:05 AM by Steve Grisetti

    Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?

    TheRedKnightMike

      Hi folks,

       

      I just got a Canon Vixia HF R300 and am recording at its highest definition. According to its manual, this "MXP" type is 1920x1080 @ 60 fps interlaced.

       

      But to my chagrin, the camcorder came with almost zero software. Just a Pixela "Transfer Utility" that does little more than copy the MTS from the SDxc card to my hard disk, something I can do manually. Further, the movie is broken into 2 GB segments, which average very close to 11 minutes and 27 seconds of film (and an hour is about 10 GB).

       

      When I pull this into PE11, it says the properties are MPEG Movie, 1920x1080, 29.97 fps, pixel aspect ratio 1.0.

       

      I want to keep my home movies at the highest resolution possible (which I can only imagine is the initial resolution), but it's nice to save space if possible

       

      I am an amateur at this and want to make sure I'm not missing anything...

       

      If I output it to 1920x1080 @ 29.97 MP4, will I be degrading it any? I notice the fps is not identical, but interlaced is kinda sorta half speed, anyway...

       

      And I presume it's ok to concatenate the 2-GB pieces.

       

      Also, do I mess anything up by directly copying JUST the MTS files? I can see that it makes some small tracking files whenever I video. Everything looks ok in PE11, but maybe I don't realize I'm missing something.

       

      Help or comments appreciated! Canon has left users a little high and dry... but then, I did get a pretty decent piece of hardware cheap. So, you get what you pay for. 

       

      Thanks!

       

      Mike

        • 1. Re: Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?
          Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

          If you attach your camcorder to your computer via USB, you can (and should) use Premiere Elements' Add Media/From Flip and Camera tool (the Video Importer) to get the video from the camcorder and into your project.

           

          60 fps interlaced is the same thing as 29.97 fps, so the program is not changing your video. 60 fps interlaced means that the approximately 60 frames of video combine to produce 29.97 frames per second.

           

          The best format for outputting your finished video depends on how you're going to use that video. There are a number of codecs that will produce video quality that is virtually identical to your original.

           

          How do you plan to use your output video? As source video in another video project? Online? On a BluRay disc or DVD? There is an ideal output template for each specific use.

           

          You bought an excellent camcoder, by the way! I have one just like it an the results are outstanding! They also edit beautifully in Premiere Elements 11.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?
            TheRedKnightMike Level 1

            Thanks very much for your reply, Steve! It's good to know that the interlacing and 29.87 are compatible - I wondered about it.

             

            As for the purpose of my projects, most of them are for archiving family memories. Some might be copied, distributed, and viewed nowadays, but the real purpose is so my kids can remember their childhood 30 years from now, etc. As such, what I really want to do is make sure I hold onto almost all the resolution (quality) I can. Because you can always dumb resolution down, but you can never really get it back once it's gone. And storage for even the largest home movies will likely be trivial 30 years from now. Still, there's no reason to keep something at twice the original size when it's almost all empty wrapper, as I understand some of the older formats do. I figure mp4 is good for this... would you agree? Future viability and compatibility while retaining almost all quality, but not at the expense of hugely inflated size.

             

            I'll use PE's Add Media tool... I see that the Help says when you add it this way, PE "automatically changes your project settings to match the clip properties". That's a big plus. Would you happen to know:

            • Is it the same thing if I use PE to import from the SD itself (taken out of the camcorder)? It's a bit easier than making space for, and powering up, the camcorder every time I want to transfer something.
            • Is there anything besides the settings that benefits from using PE to import it? Sometimes it's a little easier to not fire up PE and just use Windows Explorer to copy stuff en masse... so I want to know exactly what (else) I might be missing if I do that, so I can make the best decision.

             

            Again, thank you very much for your reply, Steve! I didn't know if anyone here had a camcorder like mine. Yes, I think I got a tremendous deal on it... the R300 doesn't have all the bells and whistles, and mine was refurbished... but in the camcorder world, you can incrementally get up to hundreds or even thousands of dollars... meanwhile, I got a hella lot of camcorder for just $170, versus not having one at all these days.

             

                 Mike

             

            P.S. We can share notes on batteries and SDxc cards elsewhere if you want (in another thread). I have been testing cheap SDxcs from NewEgg and unofficial batteries from eBay.

            • 3. Re: Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?
              Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

              So how do you plan to "archive" your family memories? On BluRay discs? On a hard drive so that your family will need to gather around the computer every time they want to watch your old movies?

               

              The way you plan to view your movies determines the best template for outputtting them.

               

              Whether or not you need to use Premiere Elements to copy your files over from your camcorder depends on the results you're getting. If using Windows Explorer works, then  go ahead and use it. If not, then you should use Premiere Elements' Video Importer, as I explain in my tutorials at Muvipix and in my book.

              • 4. Re: Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?
                A.T. Romano Level 7

                SG

                 

                You wrote:

                 

                60 fps interlaced is the same thing as 29.97 fps, so the program is not changing your video. 60 fps interlaced means that the approximately 60 frames of video combine to produce 29.97 frames per second.

                Do you want to revisit what you wrote?  I think that I am seeing a significant typo.

                 

                ".....approximately 60 frames of video combine to produce 29.97 frames per second..."

                 

                Should that have been 60 fields combine to produce 29.97 interlaced frames per second

                Since 60 fps is 60 fields per second, not 60 frames per second.

                 

                Thanks for considering.

                 

                ATR

                • 5. Re: Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?
                  Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                  You are absolutely right, ATR. 60 fields per second interlaced form ~30 frames per second.

                  • 6. Re: Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?
                    TheRedKnightMike Level 1

                    Thanks Steve,

                     

                    I am not too concerned about the storage medium at this point, which is to say, I will carry them forward on multiple hard disks over time (including backup sets). We're talking about future generations, and this is the simplest way: Let the ever-expanding hard disk size, and changing media types (e.g. once IDE, now SATA) change as they go... I'll just keep copying forward to each new PC, plus setting aside and making a point of keeping hard disks as I retire each PC. So I am just doing the simplest thing, and am only concerned about the format of the files, not the actual storage medium. Stated another way: Let's not talk about storage media; I'll do that in another thread maybe. Let's stay focussed on the actual video files, and best format. True, they are not entirely separable. But now you have a better idea of where I'm coming from. FWIW, we will assume that even if I am gone, there will be someone with decent computer skills. Let's not go into a very deep discussion about all future possibilities, but just talk about a decent conversion for Canon MTS files right now.

                     

                    Let me know if you have any ideas concerning my two bullets.

                     

                    ATR, in Steve's defense, he was also responding to me saying "I notice the fps is not identical, but interlaced is kinda sorta half speed, anyway". Not that Steve needs any defense

                     

                    Thanks all!

                     

                         Mike

                    • 7. Re: Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?
                      Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                      Nope. I appreciate ATR calling me on it.

                       

                      So, Mike, am I clear that you only want to save your movies as files viewable on computers -- not on a BluRay or DVD, that can be viewed on a TV?

                       

                      If that's the case, just output your video using Publish & Share/Computer/AVCHD using the preset for MP4 H264 1920x1080 30. This will give you an excellent quality video that should look terrific on any computer.

                      • 8. Re: Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?
                        TheRedKnightMike Level 1

                        Yes Steve, correct, I only care about showing it on my computer for now - thanks!

                         

                        Do you know or did you say - if I use PE to Add Media directly from my camcorder,

                        • Will I get the exact same result if I use PE to import from the SD card itself (taken out of the camcorder)? This is a bit easier than making space on my desk for, and powering up, the camcorder every time I want to transfer something.
                        • Is there anything besides the settings that benefits from using PE to import it? Sometimes it's a little easier to not fire up PE and just use Windows Explorer to copy stuff en masse... so I want to know exactly what (else) I might be missing if I do that, so I can make the best decision.

                         

                        Thanking you kindly!

                         

                             Mike

                        • 9. Re: Comverting camcorder HD MTS to MP4 with PE11?
                          Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                          As I've said, if your way works, you can feel free to use it.

                           

                          If it doesn't or you're not getting the quality you expect, try my "textbook" method.