Weird SD AVCHD audio compatibility issue

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by grumbler, May 30, 2009.

  1. grumbler macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2008
    Location:
    Hawaii.
    #1
    I have a Sony SR-11, a 1080i, HDD-based, AVCHD little bastard. Since HD editing is such a pain, I decided to try recording in the camera's SD mode. This creates files with a .mpg extension that are - inanely enough - some sort of AVCHD derivative.

    The problem was that despite my best efforts; despite owning FCP, QTP, VLC, and every other bloody plug-in I could find - the audio from these SD files would only play in Compressor (on my 17'' MBP.) I had to Compressor them into oblivion before editing in FCP if I wanted any sound. Really frustrating!

    Mind-bogglingly enough, the SD files played fine on my friend's MBP (even in QuickLook!) After frantically comparing the two systems' specs, I determined that the only important difference were our respective iMovie versions. She had the new (stupid) one, while I tenaciously had the old timeline version.

    So, I installed iLife 09 and now the SD files totally work.

    What the hell?
     
  2. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    USA
    #2
    You bought a camera that records in a format that was never intended to be edited. You want to edit it anyway and found a way to do it. Now you complain? :rolleyes:
     
  3. grumbler thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2008
    Location:
    Hawaii.
    #3
    I don't think you quite understand the degree of weirdness here. Installing iLife 09 somehow got my entire system - Quicktime, Quicklook, Finder, FCP, etc - to play these files correctly. Does that really make any sense?
     
  4. Courtaj macrumors 6502a

    Courtaj

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh, U.K.
    #4
    Yes. This is :apple: we're talking about here . . .
     
  5. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    USA
    #5
    To the unaware Windows user, QuickTime is an application. However, it is much more than that. QuickTime is the MacOS X frameworks for time-based data. What you think of as QuickTime is actually the QuickTime Player, the simplest QuickTime-based application. However, all of Apple's and most third-party video-compatible apps are based on the QuickTime frameworks. Just as an example, PowerPoint 2008 uses the QuickTime frameworks to play video.

    Now let's bring this home. QuickTime supports each video format through codecs. Apple added support for AVCHD to iLife 09 by adding AVCHD codecs to the suite. Except for licensing issues with specific codecs, each QuickTime codec is available to all QuickTime-compatible apps. An example of an exception is the MPEG-2 Playback Component, which is restricted by Sorensen to the QuickTime Player. Obviously, the AVCHD codec has no such restrictions. Every application/feature that now "mysteriously" supports AVCHD is QuickTime-based. There is nothing mysterious or weird about it. To the contrary, it is expected that installing an Apple AVCHD-compatible app will add AVCHD-compatibility to all other video apps and features.
     
  6. grumbler thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2008
    Location:
    Hawaii.
    #6

    I'm aware of Quicktime's framework-based, integral role in Mac OS; however, is it not remotely "mysterious" that Final Cut - which I believe is AVCHD compatible - didn't fully support (video only) those pesky SD files? And that Compressor (also QT-based, I assume) DID?

    Surely that is a mystery that, if ever slightly, boggles and questions and confounds even your vast inventory of Mac-based knowledge!

    (And by the way, I've used Macs my whole life, you unaware grumbler-replier.)
     

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