I am trying the update right now. Of course that should have been the first thing I checked. Naturally having just bought this a couple of days ago I assumed that I had all the latest stuff already. I just ran the Adobe updater and now it is downloading quite a few updates, including 10.0.1 for AE. I will keep you posted. If the AVCHD quality is still bad after the update I will follow the bug report link you posted.
Ok, I updated AE to 10.0.1.19 and the AVCHD clips looks the same.
I look at some other clips and noticed another problem - white crush. There is some pretty significant white crush going on when AE renders AVCHD clips.
I looked at the same AVCHD clips in Premiere Pro - no difference.
I also looked at the clips using VideoLAN's VLC media player. Amazingly enough the image they make looks exactly like the one AE makes. You guys didn't copy your AVCHD code from VideoLAN, did you?
Here is the comparision - the left half is AE and the right half is Vegas Pro. Look at the blinds - in AE they almost disappear due to white crush.
Oh and the source - Canon Vixia HF11 HD camcorder. The majority of my clips are recorded in 1920x1080 30p 24mbps mode, and some are recorded in 17mbps mode (otherwise same 1080 30p setting).
More comparisions, Vegas Pro vs After Effects...
Same problems - ringing and noise. And in this set of images you can see some kind of macro blocking going on in the AE image.
First... Vegas Pro:
After Effects: The face of the kid in the background is totally disfigured unrecognizable, especially around the mouth area. You can also see a prominent ringing to the left of the blue pole.
Yep I just did install the latest CS5 updates. Still looking ratty.
My camcorder which is a Canon Vixia HF11. It is set to 1080p 30fps mode
(actually 29.97fps) at 24 mbps.
Please send a sample clip that shows the problem to aebugs -at- adobe -dot- com.
Well, these AVCHD clips I have are huge... the smallest one I have is maybe
15 megs - what is the email attachment size limit at aebugs?
Try the 15MB one, and we'll see.
But can't you create a shorter clip that demonstrates the problem?
I just emailed the 15 meg AVCHD clip to the email address you indicated.
Here are the Vegas Pro vs. AE renderings of Frame 0 of that clip (just a small portion of it, blown up to show the difference). You can really see a checkerboard pattern in the middle of the boy's hair in the AE version. It is there in the Sony version but very faint.
The artifacts messes around with chroma keying and the Roto Brush... :-(
Same advice. Transcode before trying to pull a key. Use Vegas.
Ok, so I am supposed to basically sink weeks and money into transcoding my 1,000+ AVCHD clips and blow away terabytes of hard drive storage space because After Effects can't properly decompress AVCHD footage... that's your answer? I have a better answer. Adobe fixes their AVCHD codec and we are all happy.
You can work with AVCHD source footage just fine - you just need the horsepower to do it and a codec that doesn't screw up. I use lossless PNG image sequences (or PNG frames inside QT) for my intermediate footage (usually keyed out characters), and render out final movies to WMV 9 HD footage destined for YouTube.
Anyone know what Profile the Vixia uses? It kinda looks like Vegas is reading High Profile and AE is only seeing Base or Main. Or maybe AE is using the proxy? Or converting to MPEG-2?
I am curious to know this myself - I couldn't find any direct answers doing a google search. I wonder if my AVCHD files will have this info embedded into them... let me know if you find this out.
Actually I may have spoke too soon - Here is something I found:
"Incidentally, Canon's consumer HF 11 pushed AVCHD to its 24Mbps ceiling (AVC/H.264 High Profile Level 4.1) at about the same time as Panasonic's professional AVCCAM AG-HMC150. Sony's new HXR-MC1 remote-head camera/recorder, by comparison, averages 16Mbps in its highest-bit-rate mode (AVC/H.264 Main Profile Level 4.0). (See my review of the HXR-MC1 in the next issue.)"
That is at the bottom of this web page:
So I guess the answer is my camcorder (and therefore the sample clip I uploaded to Adobe) contains a High Profile Level 4.1 stream.
Here is another source I found:
"Like MPEG-2, H.264 has Levels that define frame-size, frame-rate, number of pictures searched, and maximum data–rate. AVCHD uses Level 4 while AVCCAM uses Level 4.1. Sony and Panasonic (consumer AVCHD) use H.264 Main Profile. Canon and AVCCAM use H.264 High Profile. (Blu-ray’s H.264 uses High Profile.)"
And in that same web page there is a discussion about problems with Adobe and High Profile 4.1:
"IT LOOKS LIKE the software codec Adobe is using is either
1) a poorly implemented 4.1 codec
2) a 4.0 codec trying to handle 4.1
3) not enough compute power for 4.1"
So it sounds like it is boiling down to Adobe needing to fix their support for High Profile 4.1 AVCHD clips. One downer - the quote above was from a post was made in January 2009... hopefully Adobe puts some resources into fixing this now and not letting this one keep slipping through the cracks... :-\