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That is correct, PE7 will import DD5.1, you will see 5.1 adjacent to the 5.1 audio track, but it will not export to DD 5.1.
I have not found any issues with stability even applying "heavy" effects.
when i drag a clip to the timeline it will only place it in Video4 or higher ... is that because it is Dolby 5.1?
If you open a DD 5.1 AVCHD project preset then all tracks can be DD 5.1, however if you open a non-DD 5.1 project preset the upper most track will be DD 5.1 and you video will be placed there.
Hope that is clear.
Thanks - this must be new in PE7 as I never had an issue with which track my clips went into ... thanks again!
do you know how to render 5.1 project to 5.1 DVD or HD ?
You cant in PE7... you would need to use another editing program that supports this feature. PE7 will only export/burn to stereo not surround sound.
P-Pro, with the SurCode plug-in (extra cost) does a great job of this. I also think that Minnetonka has a SurCode stand-alone (like their wonderful DTS encoder) for DD 5.1 SS. Also, IIRC, Nero offers DD 5.1 encoding, but it is not fully certified by Dolby Labs. For most folk, this is not an issue, but you could not, for instance, use the DD logo on a DVD, as the encoder is not certified.
Now, the one problem would be to get the DD 5.1 Audio onto the DVD. With PE (and direct to DVD from PP2), one is going from an NLE through an authorcore to DVD. I use PP2 to Export as elemental streams to be Imported into Encore for authoring. Since PE does not work with DD 5.1 natively, a workaround would have to be found - maybe a 3rd party authoring program.
I *believe* that Sony Vegas and Pinnacle Studio both offer DD 5.1 authoring, but also believe that their DD encoders are also not certified by Dolby Labs. My method is no longer viable, as Encore is only available bundled with P-Pro, and is not a stand-alone.
Maybe Paul has some suggestions for how this can best be accomplished. Since I have a solution built into my Adobe programs, I have to admit that I have not researched other ways to do it. Were I to have to go exclusively to PE, I'd be beating the bushes for a workaround, because once one uses DD 5.1 SS, they will never want to go back. I feel the same about DTS, which has to be handled in Encore as an optional Audio stream, controlled from a Menu. Still, once you use it, you will not be satisfied with plain old stereo again.
I understand why Adobe has gone the route that they have. They want the user to have an option for a fully certified encoder, albeit a US$250 one, for their "pro" programs. PE is about US$100, so a free $250 plug-in doesn't make any sense. Still, with the advent of 5.1 in-camera recording becoming more common, something will have to be done at some point.
Also of note, Minnetonka sells their SurCode plug-in for about the licensing fees from Dolby. I have it on two machines and they did not offer any sort of "bulk" purchase. It was still so worthwhile, that I bought two licenses and never hesitated.
Good luck, and if I stumble across a viable workaround, I'll post it to this thread.