General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

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Paul Stone

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General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostFri Apr 05, 2013 11:30 pm

Hi guys,

So we finally got our EF BMCC up here in QLD, Australia (from Lemac in Brisbane) and I'm starting to consider some options for its use. We'll very rarely be using the RAW mode (chews up too much data, and not really necessary for the kind of fast-turnaround ad work we do) so I'm now wondering which of the two compressed options is the way to go.

We do our work on PCs using Adobe CS6 products, specifically Premiere and After Effects. Are there any specific benefits to using one over the other? Do they produce files of significantly different quality or file-size? Does the Adobe suite interact with one more efficiently than the other?

Would love to hear any info y'all can offer :)
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Milen Mladenov

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostSat Apr 06, 2013 12:06 am

I am currently using DnxHD, because I'm on PC and I think this is the better way, because Prores is natively a mac codec. For what I know, they are pretty much the same in terms of quality.
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Trevor Zuck

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostSat Apr 06, 2013 12:44 am

ProRes plays better with others. Just had a commercial shoot today where the DP did a test earlier in the week, and said they were pretty comparable but that ProRes was slightly better. The studio I work for also edits in Avid, but we still decided to film ProRes.
- TZ

Visual FX and Post Production Artist
Screenscape Studios
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Paul Stone

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostSat Apr 06, 2013 4:49 am

Thanks for the info guys. I kinda had it in my head that Prores was more like an industry standard while DnxHD was a bit of an up-and-comer. I'll be sure to do some comparisons once we've got our camera up-and-running, it'll be interesting to see how they compare (especially in terms of how our computers handle each file).
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Milen Mladenov

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostSat Apr 06, 2013 8:24 am

You might want to check this:
http://www.bmcuser.com/archive/index.php/t-536.html
http://www.videocopilot.net/forum/viewt ... 13&t=77785
http://www.reduser.net/forum/showthread ... Pro-Res-HQ
DnxHD is everything but a up-and-comer. To my knowledge it is the standard for most of the major Hollywood big budget productions. It is really strange to use Prores in Avid instead of DnxHD giving the fact that DnxHD is the native codec for Avid? And also Paul, in PC you can only read Prores, no writing(exporting). Hope this is helpful!
Cheers!
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Wander Andringa

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostFri Jun 28, 2013 1:24 am

I'm recording ProRess whilst using a PC desktop. Adobe Premiere has no problem with that at all. I love how much room ProRess still gives you in the grade (especially when ur used to grading DSLR footage). I'm not sure why people still say ProRess wont work on Windows. DnxHd only seems sensible to me when ur an Avid editor.

*Forgot to add that you do need Quicktime Pro, hence ProRess doesn't come native on Windows. When you got that installed there are no setbacks.
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Milen Mladenov

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostSun Feb 23, 2014 9:23 am

Wander Andringa wrote:I'm recording ProRess whilst using a PC desktop. Adobe Premiere has no problem with that at all. I love how much room ProRess still gives you in the grade (especially when ur used to grading DSLR footage). I'm not sure why people still say ProRess wont work on Windows. DnxHd only seems sensible to me when ur an Avid editor.

*Forgot to add that you do need Quicktime Pro, hence ProRess doesn't come native on Windows. When you got that installed there are no setbacks.


Prores will work in widows but it's not native, that is the simple point. Let's say you have shot something in Prores and you want to throw a lut and a quick grade in Resolve before editing. You can't export Prores from a PC, so the logical and easiest thing is to export it from Resolva as a 10-bit DNxHD. So why do you need to do this transcode from different formats. Also I like to keep a 10bit DNxHD master of a finished product. Why would I want to shoot in Prores? It is actually one more step where things could go wrong. It's not that you can't shoot and edit Prores in a PC enviroment, the question is why would you do that since it doesn't give you any advantages, just possibilities for potential problems.

Cheers,
Milen
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Jason Greene

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostSun Feb 23, 2014 12:51 pm

Paul Stone wrote:Thanks for the info guys. I kinda had it in my head that Prores was more like an industry standard while DnxHD was a bit of an up-and-comer. I'll be sure to do some comparisons once we've got our camera up-and-running, it'll be interesting to see how they compare (especially in terms of how our computers handle each file).


Please let us know what you find. On some quick tests that I did a while back, I could find no difference. They are the same bit rate and depth.

I have found no issues with reading either one of them on Windows - and I didn't need Quicktime Pro. Since I can encode DNxHD, that's what I use. At the same time, I would hesitate to say that is what you should do or claim that there is some significant benefit in doing so. My reason, therefore, is a bit silly.

It seems to me that there is no right or wrong answer to this question. Use ProRes. Use DNxHD. As others have mentioned, your workflow, not concerns over the resulting quality, should dictate your answer. I have seen no evidence to suggest that there are meaningful quality differences.
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Jules Bushell

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostSun Feb 23, 2014 6:52 pm

12-bit Cineform 444 is what I'm using. Never looking back now.

Jules
Jules Bushell
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Kyle Gordon

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostSun Feb 23, 2014 7:35 pm

Jules, what software do you use to edit?
Kyle Gordon
Professional Singer/Composer/Producer and Director/Editor/Colorist
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David J. Lee

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Re: General Purpose Filming - Prores or DnxHD?

PostSun Feb 23, 2014 7:42 pm

Beware if you're going to Prores route in Media Composer, whether AMA or transcoded. I did my last project like that, since they recently added native Prores support, but I still found the odd instance where functionality was limited due to having Prores in the workflow.

For instance there were a few instances during roundtripping, whether to Davinci or Protools, where I'd get a weird message from MC that due to the fact that I was using Prores media, i was limited in some of my consolidation option, and could only "link to media".

Wasn't a showstopper, and I usually took care of it by converting the relevant material to DNxHD at that point, but still annoying. I will likely film my next project natively in DNxHD because of this.

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