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Rendering a DV file with an effect or a transition technically will cause a generational loss. But the chances are, you will never notice it.
Ouch! I was hoping you were not going to say that it is a generational loss... I have tended to render over and over again while working with stills and video as I can't seem to stand seeing it in draft.
When you say 'you will never notice it' is that because it is at some level significantly below the generational loss that you experience when you export a movie?
No, it's because DV compression is very, very mild.
What you can do is simply delete all rendered files before export. That way you'll get only one generation of loss, and no one will ever notice it.
(P.S. Original files are never touched. Rendering simply makes a new file.)
Re-rendering (even many times) a section in Premiere does not result in ongoing generation losses since any new render always creates the preview file using the original untouched footage - the new render totally disregards any previously generated preview file. Therefore, the worst you can get out of Premiere is one generation loss. (unless you export and re-import). FYI - if you export using the Adobe Media Encoder it also uses the original files disregarding any preview files that have been created (thats why rendering the entire timeline before export to mpg, wma, etc. does not speed up the process). Premiere does use the preview files if you export to an AVI matching the project settings since it just creates a file with all the preview files (which remember are just one generation old) strung together. This process is very fast since no rendering needs to be done.
Thanks guys - good explanations.