A couple of questions please.
Have you Rendered your Timeline, after completing the assembly?
How do your blacks look without the Bevel? Also, remember that NTSC video cannot do super-blacks, so you will only get very dark gray, about 16, and whites will only be about 236. You might want to use one of the scopes, or even Fast Color Corrector, just to see what level of gray you are actually getting. Another consideration is that one's monitor gamma settings can throw things off in the Program Monitor, which is but an emulation. To really monitor the "look," a calibrated NTSC (or PAL) CRT monitor, hooked up via FW and an A-D device will give you a better display of what you have. Next best is a test output to DVD and viewing on a properly calibrated TV.
You say that you have used JPEG's and PNG's. Do you know the JPEG compression level of those. Are the PNG's PNG-24?
Just some thoughts, and maybe way off-base with each.
Thanks for your response.
Yes, I have been rendering the assembled sections (lessons) as I go along. However, I have laid out all the lessons sequentially along the timeline and have only been rendering each lesson as I . There are, therefore, lots of segments as yet unrendered further down the timeline, but I haven't been exporting them.
If I toggle the bevel on and off, I can see a marked difference in the clarity of the lines. I have resorted to playing without for my client, but I prefered the look with the bevel. As for the PNG images, they were captured as 'grabs' from the mac, and saved. These were mostly done elsewhere, with some coming to me as jpegs from the grab, save as: jpegs, so nt sure about any compression.
Unfortunately, I am working in a remote area, at home, without access to CRT and D-A kit. I will try burning to DVD and checking from there.
I have been exporting MPEG2 to 1440 x 1080i High Q, although I shot in DV. Am I likely to be causing problems by doing so?Is it better to export as DV High Q, then convert later?
Sorry for so many questions.
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Thanks for reporting. I've got a few tips, that might, or might not be useful.
1.) For a similar "look" think about doing a Title with a Shape about the size of your musical notations, and then applying the Bevel to that. You are basically doing a PiP-PiP, and you would want the Title to be on the Video Track just below your PNG/JPEG. That might get you a similar look, but without the distortion, degradation.
2.) When you do the test Burn, pick up a pack of DVD RW discs, and use those for your testing. That will save making "coasters."
3.) I think you are already doing this, but one can limit the area to be Rendered with the WAB (Work Area Bar), so that one does not need to Render the full Timeline, until necessary. Just be sure to reset the WAB, prior to Export.
Good luck, and feel free to ignore any of those,
Lot's of food for thought, and to try.
The PiP makes sense. I'll give your suggestions a go. Each attempt is teaching me something new - so I'll get there eventually.
Having re-read your suggestions, a thought has occured to me.
You mention the order / relationship of the jpeg and title video tracks.
My workflow / track discipline is still a little ad-hoc as I am learning as I go. I have up to 8 tracks running simultaneously. The bottom 2 are cam 1 and 2, both sized to be seen on the assembled screen as I want them, then I have 3 or 4 tracks containing titles, some for the whole duration of the programme (ie lesson number) while other moving titles come in and out. The music notation sequences (npgs etc) are mostly on track 4. Each title and notation change - of which there are many - each have a video transition or fade, and a bevel. Could this all be adding up to my problem. Is there a more logical / necessary way to approach this.
Your bevel / title suggestion is making even more sense now.
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Your layout is about what I would be doing too. I do not spot any issues there. I'd look into inserting the Shape w/ Bevel just below (as you view the Tracks on the Timeline) your musical annotations. This is most easily done (IMHO), by just Targeting the Track below the musical annotations, and doing Add Track, and locating it Above Target Track (or similar syntax). Exact version of PrPro might differ very slightly. Then, experiment with a Title with the Shape (I'm thinking just a white [well, light gray] rectangle with Bevel applied to it), and see if this improves things.
Note: aside from your stated issues, I think that the layout looks very good, so I'd not think of doing anything drastic. I think if you can solve those few issues, you are "home-free!"
PS - you might want to look into some of the existing Styles for that rectangle, as I think that a few have a Bevel. Also, if the Bevel Effect still messes things up, maybe do a graphic image in PS, and use the Layer Styles/Filters on it, then Save_As a PSD, to be used universally for the music annotation background. That takes all Effects (other than Transitions and Keyframed animations) out of the picture. I have found that some Effects, while useful for motion Video, do not work quite as expected for stills.
One thing I have always said about screen-captures/shots is: NEVER re-size.
From your posted pictures it looks like that you have re-sized/scaled the screen-shots.
Just for the sake of it, as a test, try to insert your screen shots and DO NOT scale them (for the test's sake, don't care about the composition look). Now, what do you see? I would guess, looked at 100% and/or a test-export, your lines would look better.
Of course, the interlacing issue may still be a problem especially if you lines don't "hit" even or odd lines (for which there have been a couple of good work-arounds presented), , but you might get a lesson about re-scaling/sizing screen-shots.
EDIT: Moral is (for me anyway), make screen-/shots/grabs/captures the size that will fit your your project/sequense settings without re-scaling/sizing.
Thanks for your input, Dag.
I'm away from the Mac at the moment, but will certainly gibe this a try tomorrow.
I'm based in Scotland so am a bit out of time sync with you guys.
Hopefully get the issues resolved tomorrow.
A huge thanks guys.
I have the JPEGS and PNG's at their original size, and have lost the bevel edge & recreated with Pip-PiP title rectangles. Nice and sharp now.
Also Much quicker to build and assemble.
Nothing loke a learning curve to keep you on your toes.