Monday, March 1, 2010

The long awaited follow up to 5D VS FCP

OK a follow up on my original post on the FCP bug (feature) that is causing problems for so many working with the Cannon 5D mrk II.

Last time I mentioned Sebsky tools
well here is the work flow.

1. Export as .WAV (yes .WAV)

2. Open Sebsky Tools (click to downloadhere)

3. Choose bwf2QT under tools. Check your settings, esp. that Timecode standard is set to 24fps.

4. Convert.

5. Give to FCP Editor.

(this is copied from a post on the DUC, thanks!)

Incase the above link doesn’t work I have also archived this important tool on my site. (click to download here)

BUT, it doesn't always work. I did four shorts with the D5 mrkII and two we re did with a special Quick setup in FCP that works perfectly, one the sebsky tools fixed and the first one which was finished before we found out there was an issue sebsky tools didn't solve and we had to do all the laybacks in ProTools. Others have had 100% luck with Sebsky tools so the failure may have been do to operator error but?

I’ve played around a bunch with this issue and it's tricky. FCP is restamping your files with the wrong sample rate in the mistaken assumption that you have been working at video speed and your files need to be pulled up to match the film speed that FCP is running at. The normal "fix" for this kind of thing is to pull down your files so when they get pulled up your in sync again. BUT Apple will "fix" you sample rate and THEN pull them up so the only hope is to fool FCP into thinking that you are already at film speed and the only way to do that is to fool FCP into thinking that you are sending it a film speed video clip. That is what wrapping it in a .mov file does.

It is also reported and confirmed by a few that FCP no longer permanently stamps your files (this was the case with early versions of FCP6) so that is good news.

The bad news is that this issue is still alive and well in FCP7.
Possible good news is that Cannon has seen the silliness of 30.0 as a frame rate and will “soon” be sending out a firmware update for the D5 Mrk II that will give it (supposedly) the same frame rates as the D7, ie standard film and NTSC and PAL frame rates.

The best workaround for the Cannon is to convert the footage to 29.97 before you edit. Or shoot in a non x.0 frame rate.
But The next best or first best depending... is to use the right quick setup in FCP.
I have linked to one that has been created specifically for working with the D5. When starting off with this quick Setup we had zero problems in post.

(to download click on this LINK)

Also there is an implication (not tested by me) that now that FCP no longer permanently stamps your files it might be possible to correct your settings in FCP and reimport and have it work. This would be GREAT if it works because it would be an after the fact fix. It didn’t work when we originally tried this but there may have been some operator error on the editors part.

Below is a quote from the DUC thread on this that implies you can post fix the FCP session and get the import to work, at least for PAL VS NTSC. And that should mean between any X.0 frame rates and non x.) frame rates but?

“Yes you are correct... FCP treats ANY integer Frame Rate this way, this includes 30 fps and PAL 25fps sequences as well... and of course, it works the other way as well - If you're capture settings are PAL and your sequence is 29.97 then it will pull up to try and match. Oh and according to Apple, this really isn't a bug, it's a feature! Seriously... according to the Apple folks I've talked to - this is the way they think it's supposed to work.”

<< updated to correct my referring to the 5D as the D5 - thanks Alex I'm sure I would remember if I actually owned one... Canon are you listening? >>

<< updated to fix links broken in my website move>>

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