14 Replies Latest reply on Feb 24, 2009 1:15 PM by (paolocasalis)

    Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue

      Hi. Can Anybody tell me how to force CS4 (Premiere, Encore etc.) to use good, old PARs? I used to use PAL Widescreen 1.422 from HDV 1.333 and everything was perfect. Now with 1.458 I've got black bars at both sides. I don't want to crop or size up sequences because render is much slower and quality not good as in 1.422 PAR. Any ideas how to solve that problem, or treat CS4 as $1700 rubbish...? :/
        • 1. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
          Ann Bens Adobe Community Professional & MVP
          No idea why they changed the PAR but select all the clips on the timeline right click and scale to framesize i would say.
          • 2. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
            Dan Isaacs Level 2
            > Now with 1.458 I've got black bars at both sides.

            It's hard to convince people of this, but CS4 is now correct (it was wrong before).

            The "active" 16x9 area (or 4x3, for that matter) within a 720x576 area is 702x576 (usually rounded to 704x576, per ITU standards).

            The best way around this is to crop about 14 pixels of off both the top and bottom of the 1440x1080 frame (or 10 pixels for 1280x720).
            • 3. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
              Jeff Bellune Adobe Community Professional
              I will back up Dan on this one: all of the CS4 apps are now technically correct regarding PAR. All versions prior were incorrect.

              This is going to mess up a lot of experienced editors who never had to deal with accurate PAR ratios before.
              • 4. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                Dan Isaacs Level 2
                This was a subject I researched a lot (and fought some long, hard battles about on the CS3 forum). I, for one, am really glad Adobe has embraced the ITU, ATSC and DTV standards for SD PARs (like FCP, Sony, AVID, etc.) but, yes, others will be confused.

                This is particularly true for widescreen PAL users, as the old (incorrect) PAR scaled to (almost) exactly 720.

                You must remember that no TV in the world will display those 8 rows of pixels on the left and right edges. As a matter of fact, 704x576 (or 704x480 for NTSC) is a perfectly legal DVD spec although Encore's workflow does not seem to support this.

                704 is also the "official" SD width for digital broadcast television.
                • 5. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                  Level 1
                  Yes, maybe it is now correct but makes a lot of troubles with converting from HDV to SD. As I said cropping or scaling is not time-effective and causes quality loose (HDV is not superb quality to enlargements). It is strange why Adobe didn't give users a choice during exporting.

                  ADOBE: How to say OUR clients that you changed mind about pixel aspect ratios and now black bars at sides are correct and before was incorrect

                  Now I'm looking for some other method to take projects from Premiere to M2V's with 1.422 PAR
                  • 6. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                    Level 1
                    >It is strange why Adobe didn't give users a choice during exporting.

                    To be fair, that kind of goes against the point of a specification. I realise it's frustrating in your situation, but adhering to specifications is beneficial to everyone in the long term.
                    • 7. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                      Dan Isaacs Level 2
                      > Now I'm looking for some other method to take projects from Premiere to M2V's with 1.422 PAR

                      I've got methods that will give you much better quality than Premiere can produce -- and probably with less encoding time. My process was originally developed for CS3 (some elements of which don't apply to CS4), but I've got a CS4 workaround. Unfortunately, I've not spent a lot of time on documenting a CS4-specific workflow. Perhaps you'd like to be my "test case" for this? I'd be glad to step you through it. A few things I'd like to know first:

                      1.) What is your source? (1080i, 1080p, 720p ... 50i, 50p etc.)
                      2.) Do your sequence settings match your source?
                      3.) What is your target format (NTSC, NTSC 24p, PAL) ?
                      4.) Do you own or have access to other encoding software, such as CCE or ProCoder? If not, don't worry -- there's a great freeware MPEG2 encoder that will do fine also.
                      • 8. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                        Level 1
                        Dan Isaacs: My source is HDV 1440x1080 50i with PAR 1.333 and I'm sure that settings match it. I used to export to MPEG2 (DVD) PAL Widescreen 25fps 720x576 (1.422). I have Procoder 3.

                        My temporary workaround is to export sequence to WMV or MPEG2 1280x720 square pixels and code it in Procoder to MPEG2 PAL 16x9 with PAR 1.422. Quality is fine but because of double-coding it is not time-effective.

                        I think that it should be posibility to use Procoder in Premiere Pro CS4 directly, but I didn't find any advice how to do that. Now I finished my job (with a little overrun deadline) and I have some time to experiments. Any tricks how to better use Procoder in this case are welcome.
                        • 9. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                          Dan Isaacs Level 2
                          Excellent. I'll post some steps later today or tonight.
                          • 10. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                            Dan Isaacs Level 2
                            OK, divo... First things first. We need an intermediary format. WMV is a bad choice. So is MPEG2 1280x720. Try this in AME: (and save the settings so you don't have to go through this again)

                            VIDEO:

                            MPEG-2
                            TV Standard: PAL
                            Quality: 5

                            1440x1080 @ 25 fps, upper field first, PAR=1.333

                            Profile: 4:2:2
                            Level: High

                            Bitrate Encoding: CBR
                            Bitrate: 100 Mbps (or higher, if you can spare the disk space)
                            M Frames: 1
                            N Frames: 1
                            (uncheck automatic GOP)

                            Write SDE: Yes
                            Video Format: PAL 1440x1080
                            Color Primaries/Transfer/Matrix: Set all to ITU-R Rec.709
                            Intra DC Precision: 10 Bits

                            (leave other settings alone)

                            AUDIO:
                            a.) If your sequence is stereo, choose PCM / Stereo / 48 kHz
                            b.) If your sequence is 5.1 (and you've got the SurCode plugin) then choose Dolby Digital 48kHz -- set the other settings as you desire

                            Multiplexer:
                            None

                            These settings should export excellent quality very quickly. Please get this step setup and then I'll move on to the next phase of procesing, OK? (sorry to do this in pieces but my time is limited today)
                            • 11. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                              Level 1
                              It's OK, I appreciate your help.

                              Let's see:

                              Source HDV: 60s, 115 MB
                              rendering time: 37s
                              MPEG2 file: 60s, 715 MB (100Mbps)

                              But it looks quite strange:
                              http://img374.imageshack.us/img374/9457/33586114ud2.png

                              Everything is OK, or I missed something?
                              http://img47.imageshack.us/img47/3525/84487837er6.png

                              As reference: Premiere Pro CS3
                              HDV -> DVD MPEG2 PAR1.422 16x9 6Mbps CBR - 91s, 43MB
                              subjective quality: 4/6 (good)
                              • 12. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                                Dan Isaacs Level 2
                                The problem, I believe, is with Media Player Classic (and/or the DirectShow filters you have installed).

                                Try reimporting the file into Premiere. It should look OK.

                                Moving on...

                                1.) Download and install AviSynth 2.5.7
                                2.) Download my hd2sd functions and plugins package for AviSynth. Follow the install instuctions in the .txt file
                                3.) Create a blank text file in notepad. Enter the following and save the file as "dvd_output.avs":


                                FFMpegSource("x:/path_to/filename.m2v", pp="hb:a,vb:a")
                                hd2sd(OutputColorSpace="YUY2", OutputBFF=false, WidescreenType=1)


                                This is an AviSynth script file, which can be read by ProCoder. Be sure to enter the acutal path to your high-bitrate .m2v file.

                                4.) Open the "dvd_output.avs" file in ProCoder. Be sure to "interpret" it as 16x9, upper field first. (sorry, I'm not directly familiar with ProCoder's settings but I know it can be done)

                                Some options:

                                WidescreenType=1 will crop a little from the top and bottom to fit the aspect. Change to WidescreenType=0 for (effectively) 1.422 PAR.

                                If you want or need lower field first, set OutputBFF=true

                                After creating the 720x576 .m2v from ProCoder, import that and your WAV (or ac3) file into Encore for authoring.
                                • 13. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                                  Dan Isaacs Level 2
                                  Hi Divo --

                                  Have you tried it out? Let me know if anything is confusing or does not work correctly. I'll do my best to help get the process working optimally.

                                  -- Dan
                                  • 14. Re: Pixel aspect ratios in CS4 - issue
                                    Hi Dan, I've followed your workflow.
                                    I have exactly the same settings as Divo.
                                    I only have two questions: through your method we obtain a perfect 1.33 video, but in this way the tv will mask the left and right sides.
                                    It would be better to have a 1,422 proportion, with some black space on both left and right side of the image, so tv borders won't hide anything.
                                    Second question: why do you pass trough an avysinth script? which advantages do you have? is it necessary? isn't it the same to open the mpeg file generated by premiere directly in procoder3?
                                    Last question: what do you think about progressive video? some forums suggest to deinterlace videos and re-interlace them, in order to obtain smoother and sharp images (cine-look).
                                    Thanks, Paolo