I have an old SD project for a set of video instructions that needs to be updated. Most of the old SD footage is still good, but I do need to reshoot a few scenes at the moment. I'd like to shoot the new stuff in HD and mix it in with the old SD footage. Eventually the whole thing will need to be redone in HD, and I'd like to begin accumulating HD foootage now.
The SD footage was shot about 5 years ago with a cheap camcorder, but looks pretty good. I've experimented with a new JVC Everio 1080i camcorder that shoots crystal clear video to hard disk in AVHCD format. Whenever I view the AVHCD files the quality is great. I experimented bringing in those files into my SD project. I set the magnification so that I will keep all of the vertical resolution and lose a bit on the sides when the 16:9 video is reduced to 4:3. The video was shot so all of the action was in the middle of the frame, so I can afford to lose the sides. Since I'm reducing 1080 lines of vertical resolution to 480, I expected to have at least SD quality as a result.
When I rendered the video, I was very surprised to see that the new HD video looks *much worse* than the old SD video. It seems that CS4 cannot de-interlace video very well. The video from the HD source are incredibly bad in quality, and the video from the cheap, 5 year old SD camcorder look great.
I originally did these videos in Premiere Pro 1.5 and had a very easy time of it. Premiere CS4 has so far been a real disapointment. The resulting video is of very poor quality and the program crashes quite a bit, which was never a problem with 1.5.