21 Replies Latest reply on Oct 16, 2008 6:43 AM by Jim_Simon

    AE render for realtime HD in Premiere

      Hi all,

      I'm working on a show shot on p2, 720p 23.976 mxf files. Editing is going great, but I'm doing some After Effects work that needs to be brought into the Premiere project. What format can i render to in AE that will allow realtime playback in my HD timeline without rendering in Premiere?

      Thanks.
        • 1. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
          Dan Isaacs Level 2
          Do you have Cineform or a Matrox system? That would make it real easy.
          • 2. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
            shooternz Level 6
            I use avi lossless.
            • 3. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
              Level 1
              I don't have cineform or matrox.
              If editing dvcproHD in other products...

              In Avid I render to Avid DV100
              In Final Cut I render to DVCPRO HD

              In Premiere? What's the equivalent?

              If the answer is to get Cineform, so be it... it's just unfortunate the awesome workflow for P2 in Premiere is hobbled by not having a codec to render to out of the box.
              • 4. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                shooternz Level 6
                I use .avi lossless from AEFX in my 720p timeline.

                (Source files are mxf)
                • 5. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                  Colin Brougham Level 6
                  Hi Lucas,

                  At the moment, AE/PP don't have a DVCPROHD AVI or QT codec for the purpose you're suggesting. Even installing OnLocation, and the DV100 codec it provides, results in playback functionality only of said AVIs recorded in OL. PP does have DVCPROHD rendering capability, but neither AE or PP offer export. You have a couple options, in my mind:

                  1) As Craig suggests, render uncompressed AVIs from AE. They will need rendering at some point in PP, and they may or may not be realtime (depending on your drive speed, mainly), but it's the easiest and most logical solution.

                  2) Render out DV proxies from AE. Set up your export module for DV, 720x480, 1.2 PAR, 23.976. Import these into your project, and edit away--use scale to frame size to at least fill the frame. Granted, it's not going to look fantastic, but you'll at least be able to use the clips for timing purposes and such. When your edit is locked, you could render out uncompressed files as above, and replace the proxies with those. Just name them the same as the original DV versions, make the originals offline in PP, and then relink to the uncompressed versions. This kind of two-step is pretty common in the offline/online process.

                  3) Here's where you can get crazy with the CheezWhiz. I don't really recommend this, but if you're hell-bent, here goes:

                  Create a new DVCPROHD 720p/23.976 project. Make sure your render settings are set to DVCPROHD, and not Uncompressed in PP. If you have Dynamic Link (from the Production bundle), bring your comps into PP that way; otherwise, you'll have to render the uncompressed versions from AE and import them. Create a sequence and drop all your comps into it. As expected, the red render bar will appear--so hit Enter to render. Wait. When you have the green bar, save your project and close it.

                  Now here's the goofy part: open up your original project, and invoke the import command in whatever manner you choose. Navigate to the "Adobe Premiere Pro Preview Files/The Project You Just Rendered In" folder. Just highlight that folder, and hit the Import Folder button. Voila--you now have DVCPROHD MXF clips from your AE comps in your project. They'll playback in realtime, and will show no red render bar, unless you manipulate the clips in some fashion. You can obviously move these rendered files to wherever you choose, and import them if you prefer.

                  This is a really silly round-about way of doing this, but it works. I've actually started using this when I do heavily-effected sequences or have sequences with a lot of comps, and the render takes forever. I'll import the rendered files back into the project, rebuild the sequence, and then export to my destination of choice (ie. web format). Normally, PP will go back to the raw, uncompressed RGB frames when exporting a movie or via the AME, and that's of course preferable, but there are times where you just want to export something for client review quickly after a lengthy render. I don't really recommend this for FINISHED work, but in a pinch, it'll get you by.

                  Have fun!
                  • 6. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                    Dan Isaacs Level 2
                    How about the P2Forge software? I think you can wrap the DVCProHD in an .AVI, no? In any case, I think you can use it to convert your lossless .AVI files to .mxf. I've never used it, but you should look into it. I think it's only $40.
                    • 7. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                      Curt Wrigley Level 4
                      Have you tried DL?
                      • 8. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                        Level 1
                        Colin,
                        Wow, thank you for that detailed response. I like the CheezeWhiz method, I'm jealous I didn't think of it.

                        I have been using Dynamic Link with my AE comps where appropriate, but it has been frustrating when you need to render multiple web versions for client review and it has to go back and to those core AE comps and render them from scratch... while I'm glad it does, it's just too time consuming until final output.

                        i'm gonna try your method today and I'll let the thread know how it goes. If only we could output dvcpro mxf directly from AE.

                        Also, this is also an issue with Avid. I wish some company somewhere could just explain why we can't get a universal dvcproHD codec like Final Cut has on the Mac side. (I'm all Windows BTW).
                        • 9. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                          Level 1
                          Yup, I think this is the method for my purposes. Using Premiere as a pseudo-render queue to produce DVCPROHD renders of my AE comps. I rendered them, took the mxf files out of the scratch disk, renamed them and moved them to my project folders, imported them, and they work.

                          Thanks.
                          • 10. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                            Colin Brougham Level 6
                            Cool! Glad it works for you. Sometimes, it just takes a little warped thinking to bend these programs to your will :D
                            • 11. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                              Jim_Simon Level 8
                              >Have you tried DL?

                              Doesn't always offer real time playback, depending on the effects used in AE.

                              Of course, DL and then a render in Premiere will offer that, and seems the easiest way.
                              • 12. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                I have struggled with this same issue- for me it's rendering out some timelapses that are jpeg sequences into DVCProHD MXF files so I can pley them in realtime in PPro. I do a variant of cheese-whiz- make a comp in AE with the files, then import to Ppro using Dynamic Link. Then I use the 'export to P2' from Premiere Pro to render them. It's a pain, but it works.

                                -Tom
                                • 13. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                  shooternz Level 6
                                  I usually Render a Lossless avi from AE in the same dimension as the AE Comp (which is the same as the Premiere Project). eg 720p

                                  Often there is a render of the clip in Premiere but it is virtually instant. (Better than realtime render)
                                  • 14. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                    Dan Isaacs Level 2
                                    You may also want to think about getting Cineform and rendering as a Cineform AVI.
                                    • 15. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                      Jim_Simon Level 8
                                      Or get CS4 and using the new "two-way" Dynamic Link feature.
                                      • 16. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                        Dan Isaacs Level 2
                                        > the new "two-way" Dynamic Link feature.

                                        I doubt that will guarantee you "realtime playback in my HD timeline without rendering in Premiere"...
                                        • 17. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                          Jim_Simon Level 8
                                          Good point.

                                          But, you either render out to an intermediary, or you render inside of Premiere. Either way, you're rendering. DL just makes the whole process easier, I think.
                                          • 18. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                            Dan Isaacs Level 2
                                            Ah, well, we've had this debate before, Jim... I am no fan of Dynamic Link. Perhaps I'm old school, I don't know, but I prefer a "hard rendered" version.

                                            Premiere preview files are too ephemeral in nature. If your PPro project gets corrupted or links or to previews are lost -- so are your renders.

                                            Also, if you add an effect to the comp in Premiere then you need to re-render the whole thing from the bottom up. If your AE comp takes an hour to render, then it will cost you an extra hour every time you change your mind about effects in Premiere.

                                            Actually, I don't like rendering in an NLE at all. I've gone from //FAST to Canopus to Matrox, all in avoidance of rendering. I do all of my prep before editing. When it comes to editing time, all I'm looking to do is arrange the pieces the way I want them and I like to get instant results.

                                            And what happens if you make a change in AE and you change your mind and want the original one instead? And what if your AE project is lost, etc? With AE, you can also task the rendering to a different machine so it doesn't hold up the rest of your editing.

                                            It's personal taste, really. Others love DL, I am sure.
                                            • 19. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                              Jim_Simon Level 8
                                              >If your PPro project gets corrupted or links or to previews are lost -- so are your renders.

                                              Personally, I don't see that as much of an impediment to the process, for two reasons. First, I think losing preview files is rare enough that it need not be a concern here. Second, and more importantly, I've kind of taken up one of your causes and started exporting all my projects as MPEG directly, rather than using a DV intermediary for Encore to transcode. This process doesn't use already rendered files anyway.

                                              >if you add an effect to the comp in Premiere then you need to re-render the whole thing from the bottom up.

                                              True, but that applies to both methods. The difference is that using DL, you can at least get an immediate preview in Premiere, even if it's not realtime. With the intermediary, you can't even get the preview in Premiere without the full hour long render.

                                              >And what happens if you make a change in AE and you change your mind and want the original one instead?

                                              If that's a concern, people can save multiple project versions or multiple comp versions within a project just as easily as multiple versions of an intermediary (and using a lot less time and space to do so).

                                              >And what if your AE project is lost, etc?

                                              That can also be applied to the entire Premiere project. Which is why a smart backup plan is a good idea. I have the file I'm working on, the auto saved versions, and a copy on a physically different hard drive. The truly paranoid might even consider an online backup of project files.

                                              >With AE, you can also task the rendering to a different machine so it doesn't hold up the rest of your editing.

                                              Wellll... My understanding of the EULA is that any program in the suite can only be run on one machine at a time. So if you're running AE from the suite on machine A, you're not really allowed to also be running Premiere from the same suite on machine B at the same time. You'd need two licenses for that.

                                              But even if I'm wrong, my guess is that the majority of users don't have two machines in the same location to take advantage of this idea. For those that do, sure it's a plus.

                                              >It's personal taste, really.

                                              On that point, I will agree.
                                              • 20. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                                Dan Isaacs Level 2
                                                > This process doesn't use already rendered files anyway.

                                                Right. So, if your AE comps are rendered and saved as AVI files, then no additional rendering will be required when outputting MPEG2.
                                                • 21. Re: AE render for realtime HD in Premiere
                                                  Jim_Simon Level 8
                                                  That is another plus.