AVCHD is an Industry Standard. So why must Mac OSX users suffer?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by jordanbramlett, Mar 18, 2010.

  1. jordanbramlett, Mar 18, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2011
  2. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
    Yes, as every professional video editing software does like to edit with compressed video where not every frame is stored in the stream.

    Some other threads.

    You can use proxies (lower res material) with FCP, and then batch everything you need for the finished sequence in the best quality.

    HD footage is HDD consuming, even SD footage is if you want to edit with low compression.

    As far as I know only Adobe Premiere does support editing H264 encoded video, AVCHD, without prior conversion. The CPU will spike up though.

    All the other respectable video editing applications need conversion to a more editing friendly format.
  3. Magrathea macrumors regular

    Aug 21, 2008
    Avchd :(

    Remember AVCHD is a delivery format, not designed to edit although some Windows editing programs claim to be able to edit AVCHD natively, you'll need a quad, octo core machine to do so.

    I don't think you should be getting 10x file sizes. Are you transcoding to ProRes, if so make sure you're using the lower bit rate version not the HQ version. You should be getting file sizes about 5 - 6 times the size. The newer version of FCP uses Proxies and a ProRes LT that should lower your file size:


    I'm not sure if iMovie uses ProRes so you may want to edit with FCP just to make sure you're getting prores. Your transcoding should not be taking hours. You can play native MTS files on a Mac, just use VLC, they play back fine on a dual core macbookpro with 4 gigs of memory. You can also try other editing codecs such as Neoscene, I believe they produce smaller file sizes. You can also shoot in 720p rather that 1080p, smaller files and unless you have a $5k camera you'll not really see the difference even on a big screen.

    I feel your pain mate, I just switched to HD too and AVCHD does suck compared to good old DV!

  4. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    You listed major camcorder manufacturers, not camcorders. As Magrathea aptly pointed out, AVCHD is a delivery format, not a source format. It is intended for amateur videographers to shot events and save them on capacity-limited media. Respected is not a term associated with the format.

    There are tapeless solutions for professional video. AVCHD is not one of them. It is intended for picnics, softball games, dance recitals, and that trip to the Grand Canyon.

    Like it or not, Apple tends to have certain notions about how things are to be used. Editing video in formats that are not designed to be edited falls outside Apple's notions of propriety. Apple can do this because it has such strong support among those who edit video in editable formats.
  5. jordanbramlett, Mar 18, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2011

    jordanbramlett thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 18, 2010
  6. larkost macrumors 6502a

    Oct 13, 2007
    If you import your movies through movie editing programs, then you should expect them to be imported for editing, and as others have pointed out this means making them frame-based, and that typically puffs up AVCHD by a factor of 6 or 7. Apple's tools make it very easy to edit AVCHD, but thus far they have not done much for just playback (granted AVCHD is not really a great playback format... its only strength is directly on the camcorder where it is simple enough to let the relatively weak processors there do the compression).

    Apple has actually come out with a royalty-free format that they are trying to persuade camcorder companies to adopt called iFrame. It is arguably a much better compromise between being a camcorder-friendly format while still being an editing-friendly format. It still is not a playback format (where size is much more important and H.264 currently is king).

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