9 Replies Latest reply on Jun 29, 2009 12:57 PM by Joshua Isaac Stone

    PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264

    Joshua Isaac Stone

      After the events in this topic, I now need to convert the same uncompressed HD Quicktime files to h.264.

       

      Procoder is giving me it's own set of issues, that I will not detail here.

       

      Because of this, I tried to find a setting in CS4 that will allow me to export the correct files, but every h.264 compression I try gives me a .m4v file. Forgive me for my ignorance in all manner of HD video, but why is this happening?

       

      Are h.264 and .m4v files interchangable? Will someone editing on an Avid system be able to use either just as well?

       

      Thanks for reading, hope someone can help me out here.

       

       

        • 1. Re: PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264
          Harm Millaard Level 7

          H.264 is an MPEG4 codec and will generate M4V files. Nothing wrong with that. It is about the same when people say they have an AVI file, which is just a container. What is relevant is the material INSIDE that container. With your M4V files, it is about the contents and if that was H.264 encoded, you are in great shape.

          • 2. Re: PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264
            Dan Isaacs Level 2

            Assuming that you went through my process, converting the uncompressed PAL QT to uncompressed NTSC AVI, you should be able to easily convert that AVI file to H.264 in ProCoder or Adobe Media Encoder or whatever you choose.

             

            "H.264" has a lot of options… make sure you can get decent specs from the Avid guy as to exactly how the file should be encoded.

             

            All in all, couldn't you just give him an uncompressed NTSC Quicktime file and let him take it from there?

            • 3. Re: PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264
              Joshua Isaac Stone Level 1

              Harm Millaard wrote:

               

              H.264 is an MPEG4 codec and will generate M4V files. Nothing wrong with that. It is about the same when people say they have an AVI file, which is just a container. What is relevant is the material INSIDE that container. With your M4V files, it is about the contents and if that was H.264 encoded, you are in great shape.

              Alright, that would be ideal if that were the case.

              • 4. Re: PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264
                Joshua Isaac Stone Level 1

                Dan Isaacs wrote:

                 

                Assuming that you went through my process, converting the uncompressed PAL QT to uncompressed NTSC AVI, you should be able to easily convert that AVI file to H.264 in ProCoder or Adobe Media Encoder or whatever you choose.

                 

                "H.264" has a lot of options… make sure you can get decent specs from the Avid guy as to exactly how the file should be encoded.

                 

                All in all, couldn't you just give him an uncompressed NTSC Quicktime file and let him take it from there?

                Well I didn't end up doing that, since it was going to be so time consuming, and my client wanted a compressed format anyway. So I thought it would save time to convert straight from the PAL QT file to h.264, as well as being higher quality.

                 

                Procoder has, seemingly, the precise settings I need, but the output files don't have an associated player, and aren't recognized by CS4. This is why I'm trying to see if CS4 can do what I need done.

                 

                I don't have an uncompressed NTSC Quicktime file. Is there a way to do that?

                • 5. Re: PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264
                  Joshua Isaac Stone Level 1

                  Also, is there a way to set my project settings to 1920x1080i?

                   

                  The closest I see is 1440x1080i, which then makes the project call my 1920x1080i footage 1440x1080, so when I convert it to the 1920x1080i .m4v, I'm afraid CS4 will some how be trying to "upconvert", when the source file is actually 1920x1080i as well.

                   

                  Sorry if that doesn't make sense, I'll try to clarify further if needed.

                  • 6. Re: PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264
                    Dan Isaacs Level 2
                    Well I didn't end up doing that, since it was going to be so time consuming

                     

                    Well, proper conversion will be time consuming. That is unavoidable. I showed you a bunch of options that can drastically speed it up, but it is always a tradeoff of time vs. quality. There is no "perfect" method of doing these conversions.

                     

                    and my client wanted a compressed format anyway. So I thought it would save time to convert straight from the PAL QT file to h.264, as well as being higher quality.

                     

                    Yes, but by converting it "straight" to h.264, you will be using the crappier deinterlacing of AME or ProCoder, thus lowering the perceived quality regardless of output format. Also: if you use a lossless or uncompressed AVI intermediary, there will be no loss of quality.

                     

                     

                    I don't have an uncompressed NTSC Quicktime file. Is there a way to do that?

                     

                    1. Create your lossless AVI file using some variation of the process I showed you before
                    2. Open Adobe Media Encoder
                    3. Drag the AVI file into Media Encoder's Queue
                    4. Create a custom QuickTime setting (such as 1920x1080, 29.97 fps, no compression)
                    • 7. Re: PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264
                      Joshua Isaac Stone Level 1

                      Ah, that makes sense.

                       

                      I'll try converting to NTSC .avi, and then outputting an uncompressed QT file and see how that works.

                       

                      Thanks, and thanks for being patient with me on this.

                      • 8. Re: PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264
                        Dan Isaacs Level 2

                        No problem. That's what I'm here for (I guess).

                         

                        One other thing to consider (and you can save yourself a step and bunch of hard-drive space):

                         

                        1. Create a 1920x1080 lossless QT setting in ProCoder
                        2. Import your .avs script directly into ProCoder

                         

                        I don't have ProCoder, but this should work.

                         

                        For "safety" (or, rather, my ignorance of ProCoder and how it works) convert your .avs script output to RGB24. So, add the following line to the END of your .avs script file:

                         

                        ConvertToRGB24(matrix="rec709")

                        • 9. Re: PAL HD converted to NTSC H.264
                          Joshua Isaac Stone Level 1

                          Oh that would be ideal if I could get that to work.

                           

                          For future reference (and in case I can't get Procoder to cooperate), what about the CS4 "project settings" that identify my uncompressed 1920x1080i file as 1440x1080i?

                           

                          Is that going to affect the quality of my export when I output it as 1920x1080i?

                           

                          Can I change this somewhere?