10 Replies Latest reply on Mar 17, 2009 12:23 AM by (Mitchell_Remes)

    Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects

    (Mitchell_Remes)
      I have been asked to create a video for a client which is to be shown in Denver USA. I am shooting on a Sony FZ1 and will be working in Pal widescreen. Can I export it as NTSC footage or is this a specialist area, is After Effects a better programe for doing this? Help I'm on a deadline
        • 1. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
          Jim_Simon Level 8
          If you haven't shot yet, I'd strongly recommend shooting in NTSC. Any conversions will degrade the footage.
          • 2. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
            That doesn't answer his question. PAL to NTSC shouldn't in theory have too much quality loss because the native resolution of PAL is a bit higher.

            And yes, Premier should manage it just fine, according to Adobe specifications, but as a caveat, I'll tell you about a problem I've been having.

            A friend of mine has a PAL DVD of some of her own work that she wanted to be able to convert to NTSC (the original source was 35mm that is not in her possession). So I renamed the VOB to an MPG and imported it in Premier CS4 (to add some sound she wanted added), then took it to Encore to burn to DVD. The resulting DVD had no perceivable image quality loss, but did have a pronounced stutter/jitter in the image. I assume this has something to do with the way interlacing was handled or converted, but it is not a problem that always happens with PAL to NTSC conversion. I also do not see the stutter/jitter nearly so badly when I play it on a computer, versus an NTSC television. So far my searches suggest that this is a problem with CS4 (either with the codecs being used or the way they are implemented), but the jury is still out. I have yet to try converting it in After Effects.

            I'd say give it a try in Premier, and if you have the same problem I've had, try After Effects.
            • 3. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
              shooternz Level 6
              If it is to be shown via DVD it is easy to shoot PAL , edit in a PAL project and then encode to an NTSC DVD.

              I usually do it by Exporting a PAL avi from the PAL project then opening that in an NTSC Project. Made the process work better (but that may have just been me!)
              • 4. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
                Dan Isaacs Level 2
                > PAL to NTSC shouldn't in theory have too much quality loss because the native resolution of PAL is a bit higher

                True, but there is the whole 50i -> 60i conversion that can get really messy.

                > And yes, Premier should manage it just fine

                No. It does just about the worst possible job imaginable. After Effects is only slightly better.

                One of the "best" (easiest, highest quality) ways of converting PAL -> NTSC is to:

                1.) Deinterlace the PAL source (50i -> 25p)
                2.) Slow down the video by 4% (25p -> 24p)
                3.) Encode as 24p "film" to DVD

                There are many other ways to do the conversion (pulldown, blending, motion compensated framerate adjustment) but all methods are predicated on high-quality deinterlacing, which Adobe products simply do not have.

                Check out my dv2film() process: http://dv2film.com (Jim Simon hosts the site)

                Although this workflow was originally developed to convert NTSC60i -> NTSC24p, it can also handle PAL sources. In addition, there is a function for "normal" 50i <-> 60i (PAL <-> NTSC) conversions.

                Go to the site and go through the workflow, but with one of the following modifications. Instead of the template that Jim provides, use:

                # option 1: create 24p from 50i

                AviSource("%PATH%\%CLIP%.%EXT%")
                dv2Film(DeintMethod=2, OutputPAL=false)


                # option 2: create 60i from 50i by repeating fields (assumes lower field first input and output)

                AviSource("%PATH%\%CLIP%.%EXT%")
                dv60i50i(DeintMethod=2, Type=0, OutputBFF=true)


                # option 3: create 60i from 50i using blending (assumes lower field first input and output)

                AviSource("%PATH%\%CLIP%.%EXT%")
                dv60i50i(DeintMethod=2, Type=4, OutputBFF=true)


                # option 4: create 60i from 50i using motion compensated framerate adjustment (assumes lower field first input and output)

                AviSource("%PATH%\%CLIP%.%EXT%")
                dv60i50i(DeintMethod=2, Type=6, OutputBFF=true)
                • 5. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
                  Jim_Simon Level 8
                  I'll add those templates to the site, Dan.

                  But I still think the best answer is to just shoot in NTSC. Always eliminate conversion if you can.
                  • 6. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
                    shooternz Level 6
                    Best answer is from Jim ...

                    "use another camera" to avoid the conversion".

                    When you live in PAL Land..these things dont grow on trees so I guess you would have to rent one in from off-shore or buy one.

                    I guess I need to do that as well because I have a local client that has a U.S Head Office to which we occasionaly send material.
                    • 7. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
                      (Mitchell_Remes) Level 1
                      Thanks for the information guys, I am filming tomorrow so I don't think there is much chance of hiring a camera in time. I read an article about importing the footage into After Effects, deinterlacing it then opening a new Comp at NTSC DV drop frame, shrinking it to fit the new Comp and exporting as NTSC DV AVI. I then brought it into Canopus Procoder 2 and exported as MPEG2 NTSC widescreen. When I brought it into Encore it seemed to play fine in the monitor with no deterioration, but I am worried that one of the previous responces said that it looked fine on his monitor and wqs jerky on a proper video monitor. I am working in CS3 though, he was on CS4. The finished product is for a meeting and will probably be shown on a PC or laptop (probably Mac I would guess) and isn't for wide distribution, so I am tempted to think that if it plays fine on my PC then everything will be ok. I will back it up with Quicktime and Flash versions just in case, but I don't want to look like an idiot in front of my client so would rather get it done correctly, maybe I can borrow a NTSC DVD and monitor from someone. This is an important pitch to an important client. begining to wish I hadn't touched it.
                      • 8. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
                        (Mitchell_Remes) Level 1
                        Forgot to say, I didn't think about having to re-time the footage, the clip I experimented on was difficult to tell whether the audio was in sync or the timng of the footage had changed. Am getting more confused by the minute, am tempted to ask a facility if they can hanle the transfer which will cut into my budget which is pretty small anyway.
                        • 9. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
                          Jim_Simon Level 8
                          >The finished product is for a meeting and will probably be shown on a PC or laptop (probably Mac I would guess) and isn't for wide distribution

                          In that case, just leave it PAL. Computers don't care about TV formats.
                          • 10. Re: Pal to NTSC can I do it in Premiere or After Effects
                            (Mitchell_Remes) Level 1
                            I decided to go and get it transfered professionaly but before I did I tried importing the native MPEG2 file in Canpus Procoder 2 and exporting it at NTSC. It worked briliantly, I have played it back on an NTSC DVD and moitor and it looks fine. Saved myself £70, thanks for your help though guys.