Help with conversion, frame rate, MPEG Streamclip, etc

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by KettyKrueger, Aug 18, 2009.

  1. KettyKrueger macrumors 6502

    KettyKrueger

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    Hi All

    I've a got a Samsung VP-HMX10 which records video as an .mp4 [compressed] but it looks pretty awesome on my 40" T.

    Now, I want to edit my footage using iMovie '09 but when I import the raw footage it's a bit of a nightmare to edit, especially longer videos. iMovie is fairly unresponsive as is 'video skimming'.

    I've been advised to convert the footage first with MPEG Streamclip but I'm unsure which settings to use. I want the best quality, no quality loss, if possible, file size is not an issue. Anyone got any idea what setting(s) to use? I'm told that using the Apple Intermediate Codec is the way to go. Given that the footage is 720p, I am correct in thinking that I can deselect 'Interlaced Scaling'?

    One last thing, the camcorder records at 50fps, will I need to change this to 25fps?? Saying that, when I connected the camcorder directly to my TV (Sony Bravia D3500) and it played fine.


    Many thanks in advance, really appreciate any helpful replies.
     
  2. bearcatrp macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2008
    Location:
    Boon Docks USA
    #2
    Anytime you convert, quality will degrade. When you import into iMovie, it is already being converted to AIC. Whats you page outs looking like? Something tell me your running out of memory and its writing to VM (aka hard drive again). Once its in iMovie, you shouldn't have any problem chopping it up. Hope your using a scratch disc as this will speed things up.
     
  3. KettyKrueger thread starter macrumors 6502

    KettyKrueger

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    Are you sure it converts it to AIC? Because it's doesn't take very long to import my videos.

    Page outs?

    For info; I am using the internal hard drive.
     
  4. bearcatrp macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2008
    Location:
    Boon Docks USA
    #4
    Open activity monitor and click on system memory. Look at the page outs. If you have more than 10% of your page ins, thats a sign you need more memory.
    The scratch disk is for speeding up the process of editing. Instead of reading and writing to the same disk, you read from and write to another. iMovie and FCE imports video to AIC where as FCP imports to prores. If you use mpeg streamclip to convert your video, you loose a little quality. When you import into AIC, your loosing a little again. Importing into any editor makes the video into an acceptable codec for editing for that particular program.
    I used to use mpeg streamclip when I had a sony SR100. iMovie wouldn't import it so I had to convert it. I moved up to a sony SR11 (AVCHD) and iMovie 9 imports it fine into AIC so I can edit it. Apple has no editor that will edit AVCHD raw, pc side doesn't either, so I edit in AIC. Now you can export in allot of formats if its going to be a file. This is were its critical you choose one that fits your needs and quality. Also determines the file size.
    Try this, reboot your mac, then fire up iMovie. Make sure no other program is running. Do some work in it for a bit. Check your page outs and post what you have.
    Laptops are ok for quick edits but for long clips, your going to have problems. I started on a iMac, then moved over to a mac pro for the speed and multiple disks.
    Hope this helps.
     
  5. KettyKrueger thread starter macrumors 6502

    KettyKrueger

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    Thanks, I'll give that a whirl shortly.

    So if i convert to AIC before, then it should load into iMovie instantly? To be honest, it doesn't take too long to load in iMovie anyway.

    I have 4GB of ram which I thought would be enough, but I'll check the page outs in a bit.

    Is iMovie able to edit compressed .mp4 effectively? In the past I have converted to AIC before and iMovie handled it perfectly. I don't mind converting all my footage now I just want to be sure I'm using the best settings and methods.

    Thanks.
     
  6. bearcatrp macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2008
    Location:
    Boon Docks USA
    #6
    Once imported, you shouldn't have any problems editing. It's in editable format. Once in, you chop it up, add transition, music, or whatever you want the finished video to look like. iMovie can only do so much. If you want more options, you will have to buy a more powerful editor. Myself, I hate the newer iMovie. I do all my editing in iMovie 6hd. Spent some money on plugins for cool transitions and effects. Can't do that with iMovie 8/9. What are you going to do with the edited movie? DVD, utube, etc?
     
  7. KettyKrueger thread starter macrumors 6502

    KettyKrueger

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #7
    Thanks for the replies. I think I've realised where I've been going wrong.

    When I import my videos into iMovie, I make sure that the 'Optimize Video' option is NOT selected, which explains why my videos are quick to import and also why I'm having problems 'skimming'.

    So I if choose to 'optimize' my video will iMovie convert my footage into AIC? If so, would I better letter MPEG SC do this instead, that way I have some control over the conversion process.

    Thoughts appreciated.

    Thanks.
     

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