Welcome to the forum.
First, a few questions, please:
- What version of PrE are you using?
- I assume that you are on a Mac. What version of OSX are you using?
- What is the Project Setting?
- What are the full specs. of your Canon's Video files, plus the full specs. of the iMovie files?
- Exactly what type of "distortion" are you seeing, and where are you seeing that?
Good luck, and let us know a bit more, please,
Hunt has asked the relevant questions to get to the core of your issue which needs more definition.
But, I would zero in on the following in your reply to him although all the answers are needed...
Your Canon appears to be generating H.264.mov and offers a variety of resolutions
1920 x 1080
1280 x 720
640 x 480
320 x 240
Which one of those applies to what you are doing? Coupled with that is the version of Premiere Elements and what you or the program is setting as the project preset to match the properties of whatever the source media are.
Looking forward to the details that will help us help you.
I'm using PrE 12 the trial version. I was about to buy it until I noticed ths, I want to make sure it is fixable first.
Yes, I'm on a mac. I was using os x 10.8 but just installed 10.9 Mavericks.
I tried the default setting, and many more just to see if anything would work.
I'm not sure what all would be helpful, but from iMovie I found two to be different, one spec appeared on my regular videos and the other on my stop motion.
One spec is 960x540/frame rate: 24/H.264, LinearPCM/ HD(1-1-1) and the second one is 960x540/frame rate:29.97/H.264/HD (1-1-1). For my camera the video specs are 1920x1080/frame rate:23.976/H.264, Linear PCM/ (1-1-6). All MPEG files.
It varies from the different project setting I tried but it is very pixelated. If I just watch it using the default player is is perfectly clear but when in PrE is is very pixelated and looks like it was shot with an extremely horrible cellphone camera. I am seeing it in all the videos but some are worse than others.
From what you wrote, I get the impression that you have taken files from your Canon and took them through iMovie. And, what you are running through Premiere Elements 12 Mac are the iMovie exports. Is that correct?
What happens if you take your 1920 x 1080 at 24 progressive frames per second (H.264.mov) from the camera and import that into Premiere Elements 12 Mac using the project preset of
More later, pending further clarification.
Yes, I have already made some videos using iMovie so those are some of the movies I want to use.
I did try that, using the videos right from my camera with those presets and that worked. ..but I also added the 960x540/frame rate: 24/H.264 to the video and it actually looked alright until I rendered it. As soon as I did that it was extremely pixelated.
I would like to include both iMovie videos and ones directly from my camera. Is that possible? I just don't want to remake all of the videos I've made in iMovie.
From what you wrote, it would appear that you are OK with Premiere Elements and video from the camera. Sounds like you have a match of project preset NTSC DSLR 1080p DSLR 1080p24 and your camera's video 1920 x 1080 @ 24 progressive frames per second.
As a test, how about taking the 960 x 540 (just them) into a new project with the project preset of NTSC DSLR 720p DSLR 720p24 and see what the rendered playback looks like in the Edit Mode monitor.
But there is no project preset for 960 x 540. And, there is only one project preset per project.
Although the files from the camera and those pre-processed in iMovie are 16:9, the difference in resolution may be what is creating the problems with 960 x 540 ones. The 960 x 540 is being scaled to the project preset (see preferences Default Scale to Frame Size). It may be in this upscaling that you are getting negative effects.
You definitely want to avoid re-encoding since all video undergoes degradation under those circumstances. So, weigh the pros and cons of what you would like to do and what is in the best interests of your final product.
We will be watching for further developments.
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Unfortunately, if one is working in a 1920 x 1080 Project, with 1920 x 1080 material, then they add 960 x 540 material, it will only be about 1/4 of the resolution, and to fill the Frame, will need to be Scaled up ~ 4 times - that WILL lead to visual degradation, and is probably what you are seeing.
Now, what will your final output be?
If you are going to, say DVD-Video (720 x 480 for NTSC), then Scaling down both the camera footage, and the iMovie footage, in a DV Project, will look different. One can get away with more down-Scaling, than up-Scaling. Just something to think about, but letting us know how you plan to output your Project will be important.
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As I said earlier....
The good news in your report is that you can get good results with footage direct from your camera and Premiere Elements since we are then dealing with typical project presets.
Again, what I said before or suggested, when you are dealing with a mixed Timeline, especially one which includes atypical formats, then priorities need to be set. And, the scaling up factor on results needs consideration and strategy planning beforehand.
How many files have been generated from your source and edited in iMovie already...that is, these iMovies that you now want to use as source for Premiere Elements? In the long run, it might be easier to repeat that work using the camera source and Premiere Elements to get the best results. Re-encoding effects are always possible. Why did you select the 960 x 540 iMovie export in the first place?
I believe it is possible to import and export a 960 x 540 movie from Premiere Elements with Default Scale to Frame Size off. More on that later if interested. Can I assume, that if you were to do that your export goal would be 960 x 540 @ 24 progressive frames per second as H.264.mov or H.264.mp4 or other?
Looking forward to your reply.
Quite a few, I just did them a while ago for quick projects and I think it ended up being 960x540 because I wasn't paying attention to the export settings.
I just want the videos for youtube but I think I would like them to be 1920x1080? I think I will just use the original files then and just recreate.
Thank you so much for the help!
Thanks for the follow ups.
Do not give up on the iMovie files just yet. See what they look like in Premiere Elements with the 1280 x 720 @ 24 progressive frames per second project preset. If we can do that, the resolution on YouTube should look fine.
When you get time, please let us know what worked for you.
Sorry, I have one more problem. I'm using the video directly from my camera with the setting you suggested and it's alright until I add an effect. As soon as I do that the video becomes very pixelated and unclear again. Any way to fix this?
What effect are you applying to the video? After you apply the effect, do you render the Timeline content to which you applied the effect? Is the pixelation and lack of clarity before and/or after the render of that Timeline for preview purposes?
Can the effect be adjusted using the effect's panel found via Applied Effect Tab, Applied Effects Palette?
Do any other effects applied to the footage behave the same?
Thanks. Looking forward to working through the details with you.
I have applied many effects and played with them in the panel. It is fine until I render it and as soon as I render it, it becomes very badly pixelated. It's the same with all the effects I have tried.
What is your intended export for your Timeline content? Are you heading for DVD-VIDEO on DVD disc, Blu-ray disc format on Blu-ray disc, AVCHD on DVD disc, or are you going to export as a file saved to the computer hard drive?
The reason that I ask relates to this. I would like to know what the end product looks like as compared to what you are see for preview purposes in the Edit Mode monitor. Is what you seeing in the Edit area extend to the export playback?
Just some thoughts for now.
I am going to post the video on youtube, so just saving it to the computer. I just saved it and looked at it and it seems to be fine! It's a little harder to edit when it's pixelated but at least it ends up being clear after exported.
That was great news about the good quality of your exports.
Depending on how you went to proceed, we could look at this as a preview issue and start thinking about
a. do you have the latest version of your video card installed
b. if you do, the we might consider deleting the BadDrivers.txt file. I am not sure where that would be in Premiere Elements 11 Mac directory. In Windows, it would be
Local Disk C
and in the 11.0 Folder is the BadDrivers.txt file that you delete.
But, if you right click on the Edit Mode monitor and select Magnification, is the set for "Fit"? And, if you right click on the Edit Mode monitor and select Playback Quality, you could experiment with Automatic and Highest. But because of the symptoms that you describe, I am less likely to go full force in those directions, but....
When you render the Timeline, you automatically generate preview files. Any chance that you have pile ups of them in the Adobe Premiere Elements Preview Files Folder wherever that may be in the Mac. (I am an Elements Windows user.)
Just some thoughts for now. But sounding good in the way of getting your exports in good quality in spite of the preview setbacks.
I will have to try and find that because I'm new to mac.
It is set to fit and I tried changing to highest but nothing improved.
Thanks for the reply.
I am strictly an Elements Windows users. One of these days I need to get my hands on a Mac computer to take a first hand look at Premiere Elements Mac.
I came across this Adobe document on where to find the Preference File in Windows and Mac. Please check it out as it relates to your Mac computer.