I have been doing animations recently in 3ds Max but I am really lacking experience in the video editing and compositing side of things. My problem is basically when I export media from one program, I basically just guess what settings I should be using. This is a link to my poorly formatted and hobbled together video:
my workflow goes like this:
3ds max > after effects > premiere > and I would like to start using speedgrade
so here are my questions:
What file format should I be using to export my still images from 3DS Max? jpeg? png?
What should my render settings be like when I render from after effects?
What should my export settings be in premiere or should I just choose file> send to speed grade
what settings should I be choosing when exporting from speed grade?
This last video I made was 720x486 size. I used 24 fps for these videos.
I know this is a whole lot but any help or direction is greatly appreciated. I don't know what I'm doing.
If you just don't have to comply with requirements of already established workflow (specification), choosing a format/codec for a digital intermediate is about finding optimal 'quality / file size / render time' ratio.
For monitoring quality you can utilise the following technique:
- in After Effects set your project to 32-bit and linearise working space for more accurate blending;
- drop both your original file and a transcoded one with a particular codec into the same composition;
- set an upper layer blending mode to Difference.
The closer the result to pure black solid, the lesser mathematical shift in pixels values.
Since there is no 'original file' on exporting from 3D application, you can start with 32-bit OpenEXR as a high standard, then run your own tests with other render options and decide what better serves you with your particular limits (CPU, GPU, RAM, disk space etc.)
Similarly when you decide on an intermediate format/codec for PrPro: run your own tests and decide, which ones out of a load of production codecs, even codecs families, from image based like DPX, TGA, TIFF, PNG to video based like ProRes, DNxHD, UT Video, Lagarith, CineForm etc. serve you better.
Your SpeedGrade workflow does depend on which version of PrPro you use. Aside from that you need to clearly identify why you want to use SpeedGrade. It may appear that utilising AE built-in effects (e.g. Color Finesse by Synthetic Aperture) or sending to SpeedGrade an intermediate exported from AE composition, saving look and applying it via Apply Color LUT effect in AE is more efficient than sending to SpeedGrade your sequence from PrPro.