Final Cut to Motion roundtripping

So, I’ve been playing today with a little issue that occurs when roundtripping video between Final Cut and Motion. This is the situation in which you select a clip in your timeline in Final Cut, right click on it and select “send to Motion Project.” Then, you do your Motion work and save the project. When you return to Final Cut, your video clip has magically updated with the composite from Motion. Hoorah!

However, there’s a little glitch that occurs with color rendering during this process. The signal going to Motion doesn’t match the signal that comes back. Here’s an example, taken from an 8bit uncompressed timeline.

Picture 3-1

Here’s the video as it exists in Final Cut Pro initially

Picture 2-1

Here’s the video that comes back from Motion

If you look at the histogram and RGB parades, you’ll see a pretty big difference in the images. This isn’t a huge deal in most cases, but I was recently working on a shot that had a heavily saturated green component. There is a very definite shift in both white balance and luminance.

I called ProVideo Support, and they actually reproduced the problem and promised to report it. That’s a first …

Affordable Studio HD on the Horizon?

It’s February, but we’re already in the run-up to NAB. Sony had a deluge of press releases today. Among them was one in particular, about the new HDC-1400 studio camera. It looks to be an HDC-1500 that only does 1080i60 and 720p60 and lacks a few other features. Suggested list is $65,000, which is about $30,000 under the list for the HDC-1500.

Along the same lines, Panasonic recently announced the AK-HC3500. Spec-wise, it’s right in the same ballpark, though it lacks 720p support. No pricing has been announced, but I’d guess $50k.

It’s really exciting to see studio HD cameras coming down to the sub-$100k range. Getting to the point of being able to have a whole camera system (camera, lens, viewfinder, CCU, RCP) for less than $100k will be a big deal. Depending on what retail is on either of these models, it may not be far off.

Free tapes from Sony

I was going to ignore this promotion from Sony, but I did a bit more reading and realized it’s actually a pretty sweet deal. If you’ve purchased any high end HDV camera between August 1, 2006 and now, you can get 5 free HDV Master tapes. That includes the Sony cams (Z1U, A1U) as well as the Canon XH and XL cams and the various JVC models. Sweet! Now, to find those invoices …

Iditarod shot on P2

I’m a bit confused. Panasonic is bragging about P2 being used for the first HD shoot of the Iditarod. But, last year, Sony talked about XDCamHD being used for the same race. Hu?

All that aside, I’m a bit confused. It seems to me that P2 is about the worst possible format for this type of shooting. They shot 140 hours of footage. On a format that can get at best about 25 minutes per 8gig card, that seems like a really painful way to shoot. I understand that the no-moving-parts thing is nice in -40 degree weather, but wow, it seems like that’d be a hard shoot to pull off without a limitless supply of P2 cards.

MacPro blue screen on wake from sleep

Just a little note to tuck away for future reference. I added another 2gigs of ram to my MacPro yesterday, and found that it would no longer wake from sleep. I’d just get a blue screen that wouldn’t go away. I ended up solving it by manually reseting the SMC via the button on the motherboard. I think that the issue occurred because I didn’t unplug the computer while swapping the ram. Because of this, it was never without power for the requisite 15 seconds that it takes to drain and flush the SMC normally.

In any case, after resetting the SMC, all seems well. I think.