newbie question about Vegas and Panasonic

Discussion in 'Amateur Video Production' started by BobF, Jan 29, 2012.

  1. BobF

    BobF Guest

    I just got a Panasonic TM900 and I want to get editing software...

    Does Sony Vegas handle Panasonic AVCHD?

    I have Pinnacle Studio 9 but don't like it too much so I don't want to upgrade.

    The reason I ask is that I tried playing a clip in my friends computer with
    Canon software and it wouldn't... even though the files are all called the same
    ..mts and the software mentions "loads Sony AVCHD".

    Thanks!
     
    BobF, Jan 29, 2012
    #1
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  2. BobF

    Brian Guest

    The AVCHD format should be the same for all cameras that support this
    format. The only difference is the video bit rate.
    Sony Vegas 10 and 11 supports AVDHD but you need a fast computer as the
    processor has to process more data.

    Most Blu-Ray players support AVDHD so you can put your video from the
    camera on to a DVD disc and play it back on a Blu-Ray player. Also useful
    if your camera has surround 5.1 sound. You should be able to put the
    camera's video on a flash drive and plug it into a Blu-Ray player.
     
    Brian, Jan 29, 2012
    #2
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  3. BobF

    ushere Guest

    hi brian - pleased to see all your research over the months has / is
    paying off. great advice....
     
    ushere, Jan 29, 2012
    #3
  4. BobF

    Brian Guest

    Thanks ushere.
    I've received a lot of help on this newsgroup so its nice to be able to
    give some help to others for a change.
     
    Brian, Jan 29, 2012
    #4
  5. The short answer is yes (and all versions of Vegas running back
    to the introduction of the very similar TM700 could import MTS
    files and export MP4, Blu-ray, etc.), BUT, this material is
    VERY difficult to edit without having a "monster" computer. I
    finally just "bit the bullet" and built a 4.4gHz Intel i7 with
    a big cooler, a new case that would fit the cooler and with 7-6"
    fans to keep it all cool, 16 gigs of 1600-speed RAM, a 480-core
    video card, etc., and Vegas Pro 11. It is now *almost* easy to
    preview and edit/export this material. There were many times
    when I sorely wished that I had stuck with HDV, which can be
    edited easily on a dual-core machine - but the image quality
    of material edited at 1920x1080-60P is very noticeably higher.
    --DR
     
    David Ruether, Jan 29, 2012
    #5
  6. BobF

    mike Guest


    There are trial versions of all the different Sony editing packages.
    Download them, play with them and see what you think.
    http://www.sonycreativesoftware.com/vegassoftware

    Mike
     
    mike, Jan 29, 2012
    #6
  7. Specific to the Panasonic TM700 (and likely the very similar
    TM900) is the following: if you directly compare video shot
    at native 60I at 17Mbps and 60P at 28Mbps (both at 1920x1080)
    by shooting the same subject matter, placing the results on
    two tracks (one over the other in the editing software, lining
    up similar material, and switching the upper track on/off to
    compare it at "Best-Full" using a full-resolution secondary
    monitor), you will find it hard to shoot with the former even
    though it *may* be easier to edit - but there is a partial
    way out of this, which is to shoot 60P video to the camera's
    internal memory, then later have the camera convert these
    files to 17Mbps 60I on a memory card placed in the camcorder.
    This is done at much less than a real time rate, so the 17Mbps
    conversion is of higher quality (very close to 60P original)
    than similar camera original (but the conversions do take
    quite a while...). The other down side of this is that the
    data rate is still lower at 17Mbps, and if you do much
    modifying of the material, it may not hold up as well as the
    60P original material.
    --DR
     
    David Ruether, Jan 29, 2012
    #7
  8. BobF

    Mxsmanic Guest

    Wow ... are you sure you're talking about AVCHD?

    I edit AVCHD from my little Handycam on a vastly more modest machine, and it
    seems to work just fine. I set the preview to low quality so that it runs
    smoothly. And it does take a lot of time to render if I render to the best
    blu-ray quality (about 9 times the length of the video, 25 Mbps). But it's
    still quite usable even with modest hardware.

    Or is Panasonic's implementation of AVCHD somehow more aggressive in
    compression?
     
    Mxsmanic, Jan 29, 2012
    #8
  9. [About 28Mbps 1920x1080-60P, now part of the AVCHD standard...]
    Yes - but there is AVCHD, and AVCHD...;-)
    What is the camera, data rate, frame resolution, and frame rate?
    If you do this, how can you tell what you have? I run a side
    monitor at full 1920x1080-60P to see detail on individual frames,
    and run at "Best-Half" in Vegas to see a smooth playback (or I
    make a RAM preview at the highest resolution). Anything less
    would be useless to me.
    My current "monster" computer reduced the render times to a
    small fraction of what they used to be (maybe 1/8th the render
    time with the fast CPU's 8 cores and threads and the video card's
    slower 480 cores all "chewing up" the footage) - but the main
    purpose in building the computer was so that I could see what I
    was doing while editing. Fortunately, it didn't cost a fortune
    to build the computer (I can supply a list of parts if anyone is
    interested...;-). BTW, the maximum quality Blu-ray can do is
    about 40Mbps at 1920x1080-60I (the last part is unfortunate,
    since all things being equal, it cuts the amount of information
    on the screen by a factor of two - but the Panasonic's lens is
    also unusually sharp, giving a further advantage to it...).
    The data rate is higher. I haven't compared file sizes with other
    cameras shooting for the same period. If you are curious, try
    shooting a 20-second clip with your camera. That length clip
    results in an unmodified clip file size of 63-64megs shot by
    the Panasonic TM700. Let us know the results...;-)
    --DR
     
    David Ruether, Jan 29, 2012
    #9
  10. BobF

    Brian Guest

    Thanks David for your suggestion on comparing videos shot at different
    video data rates.
    I'm not certain why but I recorded some short test videos at 17M 50i, 25M
    25p and 28M 50p and when played back on my 40 inch LCD TV using a direct
    connection from the camera to the TV (using HDMI) I could see no difference
    in picture quality.
    Maybe it depends on what subject is being video recorded. even at 5M 50i
    the video looked good. My TV supports 1920 x 1080.
     
    Brian, Jan 29, 2012
    #10
  11. BobF

    BobF Guest

    Thats a good plan... I'll do so when I get my new computer.
     
    BobF, Jan 30, 2012
    #11
  12. BobF

    BobF Guest

    Right now I have an old "game quality" machine with a heat pipe cooled MB (MSI
    Platinum) and an 8800 VC running a Samsung 24", but it's a bit out of date...
    I'm going to get an i7 machine next.

    Can you give me some details on your machine?

    Before I forget, is Vegas a good choice? I'm not a "pro", can I get away with
    the "lessor version"?

    Thanks again
     
    BobF, Jan 30, 2012
    #12
  13. BobF

    BobF Guest

    So far I've found that Canon videos don't play properly without Canon software,
    using media player by itself, it has bad sound, but the Panasonic videos play
    perfectly. (One reason I didn't buy Canon, besides the secret password to
    register.)... (( I have a Canon MiniDV, as well as a Sony and a Samsung))

    For myself, I plan to get an i7 computer with a "many T byte drive" and keep all
    the videos on it to just output direct to a TV. Of course a blu-ray as well to
    export the odd thing.

    My camera also does 60P but apparently that isn't AVCHD compliant. Not a big
    deal for me really.
     
    BobF, Jan 30, 2012
    #13
  14. BobF

    Mxsmanic Guest

    A Sony Handycam, 24 Mbps, 1920x1080/50i.
    Easily. I just need to see what's in the image so that I can edit it. The
    quality is constant so it doesn't need to be verified.
    Why do you need to see detail on individual frames?
    My camera generates about 56 MB in 20 seconds.
     
    Mxsmanic, Jan 30, 2012
    #14
  15. BobF

    Mxsmanic Guest

    Even the "consumer" versions of Vegas are excellent video editing programs.
    The code base is the same as the pro version; only certain features are
    missing.
     
    Mxsmanic, Jan 30, 2012
    #15
  16. BobF

    Brian Guest

    one of the features missing is masking but there are ways to get around
    this missing feature. As its more for the home user there are some extra
    features such as directly uploading to the video YouTube.
     
    Brian, Jan 30, 2012
    #16
  17. Vegas Pro 8 and 9 (and also 7?) supported AVCHD (I used Pro 8 with it),
    as do the cheap Vegas Media Studio HD editing programs.

    AVCHD to DVD is limited by the acceptable data rate for writing DVDs
    (16Mbps?), whereas Blu-ray disks can be written at up to about 40Mbps.
    One advantage of AVCHD DVDs (I think...;-) is that 1920x1080-60P files
    can be written to DVDs as 60P(?), whereas Blu-ray at that resolution
    is limited to the inferior 60I.

    Some Blu-ray players can't do this, but some can accept SD memory cards
    (although I have never figured out how to write video back to a
    card...).
    In Mini-DV I preferred Sony, but in HDV I preferred Canon, and now
    with AVCHD I prefer Panasonic...;-)
    You can build a better computer by doing it yourself. A great Antec
    steel case is cheap, a good Asus MB that makes safe overclocking of
    a certain i7 CPU chip is reasonably priced, that Intel chip is a
    "give-away" relative to the performance offered for the price
    (4.4gHz+, 30+ percent above standard with an i7 2600K), the cooler
    is very inexpensive that makes the overclocking practical, 16-gigs
    of DDR3 1600 RAM is about $90(!), Blu-ray writers are now under
    $100, etc. Here is one bit of STRONG advice: SAVE *ALL* FILES YOU
    WANT TO KEEP ON ***AT LEAST*** TWO SEPERATE DRIVES! One could be
    external, unplugged much of the time. Also, I would avoid drives
    larger than 2-TB. The only "trick" that requires the help of a
    second person is installing the big CPU heat sink (look on Google
    for how to do it - that's not clear from the huge instruction
    sheet with many drawings, but it is easy) and also (surprising to
    me) how to properly apply the heat transfer paste to the top of
    the CPU chip. Follow directions, especially ones about often
    grounding yourself to the case and how to handle electrostatically
    sensitive parts (mainly board bottoms, terminals, the CPU bottom).
    If you want, I can put here a list of parts...
    The AVCHD standard was changed to include it...
    --DR
     
    David Ruether, Jan 30, 2012
    #17
  18. A few things that **MAY** be involved --
    --TVs vary (plasmas are generally somewhat less sharp than the
    *best* LCDs properly viewed *on-axis*), which levels things.
    --TVs vary in how well they process video (white text on a black
    background can show remarkable differences among TVs, and the
    ones that can't do that well will limit the detail level of
    everything).
    --Cameras vary (the Panasonic has an unusually sharp lens, and
    its internal processing favors sharpness over motion smoothness,
    but I've seen others that don't look very sharp even at 60P).
    --Some TVs (mine included) do not accept 60P on the HDMI input[!]
    and I must use a DVI input in the TV to see 60P directly from
    the camera.
    --If there is little motion and relatively little fine detail,
    you may well find it hard to see the differences, especially
    if your TV does a good job of upsampling the interlaced video
    to progressive scan, which is what HDTVs display.
    Just guesses, though...;-)
    Try a very detailed subject (like shooting into woods) with a
    none-too-steady holding of the camera (NOT tripod-mounted) at
    widest angle using an aperture (if possible) around f5.6.
    If you can, put the video on tracks one above the other with
    a full-resolution monitor view of the results. In Vegas you can
    do the following: with all tracks "open", move the cursor to a
    sharp frame on track 1 and record the frame number; close track
    one and do the same thing with track 2, but finding a frame
    that is similar in content to the one chosen in track 1; etc.
    Line up those frames exactly one above the other, with the cursor
    placed on them. Using the track on/off switches, you can directly
    compare the content quality. With just viewing video, it may not
    be quite so obvious what the differences are, but doing the
    above, it likely will be unless something like a possibility
    described above is "leveling the playing field" to a lower than
    ideal height. I can tell you, though, that the differences here
    are very visible...
    --DR
     
    David Ruether, Jan 30, 2012
    #18
  19. Hmmmm........ Your quality may be constant, but mine is NOT,
    which is why I do NOT trust what a tiny little unsharp preview
    window can reveal!
    Video is made up of a string of individual frames (especially
    progressive video). If my clip has a bunch of (or high percentage
    of) softer frames, something is wrong, like miss-focus, too slow
    a shutter speed for hand-holding or to cover subject motion, etc.,
    and these would cause me to likely toss the clip. Without accurate
    previewing, my video would not be as sharp, and sharpness (plus
    other aspects, visible only at full resolution) is something I
    value. After all, I'm editing the *image* part of a video (as well
    as the sound part later, when I then require a good playback
    system to tell what I'm doing with the audio).
    That makes sense for PAL's 50P mode since the frame rate is
    slower than NTSC's 60P...
    --DR
     
    David Ruether, Jan 30, 2012
    #19
  20. I bought the parts from Newegg, a great seller with great prices!
    Look on the Newegg site at the "egg" ratings, paying attention to
    the lowest ratings and what proportion of the total these represent.
    And regardless of what the manufacturer says, if something has a
    defect, get an RMA from Newegg since you get a new part, fast,
    and not a "reconditioned" one. I can't remember everything exactly,
    but here goes...
    --Antec mid tower steel case, black (it has ports at rear, top,
    left side, and two on the front for 6" fans, and mine came with
    all but the side and top ports with fans installed.
    --A pair of 6" Antec fans (these are three-speed, all are quiet
    in the case running at mid-speed), one for a spare and one to
    add to the one on the CPU cooler (Newegg had a deal on a pair).
    --A 750watt-rated (likely actually about 600 watts, but the
    video card alone "grabs" 285 watts...) power supply (Corsair or
    whatever with a good reputation - but I kinda avoid Newegg's
    "Rosewill" brand - but it may be OK...). Ask for the most
    knowledgeable computer hardware salesman at Best Buy - here
    he recommended any of three, so I took a stab in the dark but
    I can't remember the odd name of what I bought...
    --For HDs I would get maybe a 250meg for the program drive, maybe
    partitioning it to provide an extra drive, and two 1 to 2 TB
    internal drives plus the same size for an external drive. Avoid
    the "green" drives unless you can put up with start-up lag. I
    didn't find SSD useful for drives. You can also use a USB thumb
    drive to store programs while you are working, and these are cheap
    in ordinary sizes.
    LG, Sony, etc. internal Blu-ray writers are under $100.
    --For the motherboard, I use an Asus P8P67 (it must support a
    CPU intended for socket LGA 1155 [NOT 1156]). Before installing
    anything on the MB, switch the two switches "on" (the opposite of
    their defaults, and they may be hard to reach later).
    --For the CPU, I got "Intel's gift to builders of fast computers
    on a budget", the i7 2600K (MAKE SURE THAT THE "K" IS THERE!).
    There is a 2700K out, but it may not be worth the higher price,
    and the 6-core version is definitely not worthwhile at three times
    the price with little speed increase over the overclocked 2600K.
    --Don't install the cooler (heatsink and fan) that comes with
    the CPU - instead get the Coolermaster 212+ or the slightly better
    one that comes with two 6" fans already installed.
    STOP! Find out how to apply the thermal paste and stall the cooler
    on Google (with three descriptions/videos for each)! You WILL need
    help with the installation of the cooler on the CPU chip and
    motherboard - do it right or the CPU will overheat or not function.
    --For a video card, there are many brands and models based on the
    480-core nVidia GTX570, but I chose the EVGA 1579-AR for the
    reputation of good service from the company (hey, they actually
    appear to have pride in their products!;-), the (possibly
    meaningless) 2.5gigs of RAM on the card, the shorter length of the
    card (some of these are L O N G !), and that "AR" at the end which
    signifies that if you register the card within 30 days of invoice
    date (not the easiest process...), the warranty is a "lifetime"
    one, valuable with a card that dissipates 285 watts (hence the use
    of 6 6" fans for the case plus the 6" fan in the supply, keeping
    the case metal and vent air cold.
    --For RAM (installed before the CPU and cooler, and low profile
    to fit under the cooler), I used 4gigsx4 Kingston DDR3 1600.
    Once you get the computer up and running, go to www.memtest86
    and download it and put it on a CD to run it from overnight.
    My RAM showed zero errors with 5 passes...

    If with the keyboard and mouse are connected (and I use dual Acer
    24" 1920x1200 monitors since the editing program lays out better
    with 1200 rather than 1080 pixels vertically), there are no "beeps",
    etc., and the computer appears to run, then load the 64-bit version
    of Win 7. If all goes well, load the software for the MB bios, "AI
    Suite II", which is a windows program. First, though, with MB book
    in hand, open the BIOS with the usual pressing of the "Delete"
    key at startup (do it with both "splash" screens, but likely it
    will work only with the second) and bit by bit go through the
    settings and make choices (or, maybe better is to leave it alone.;-)
    The standard "speed" of the CPU is 3.4gHz, but you can use the AI
    Suite software to auto increase the CPU speed in steps (it self
    tests) until failure with a blue-screen-of-death. CTR-ALT-DEL to
    restart, and stop short of where you got before. I once got to
    4.9gHz OK, but a good compromise between heating with intensive
    video rendering and render speed is about 4.4gHz, a good speed
    increase! If you bigin to overheat the CPU, a warning will pop up
    in the lower right of the screen, and at 95 degrees C., the CPU
    will shut down. A little program called "Core Temp" is useful to
    check the CPU speed (it's 1.6gHz with light duty requirements,
    4.4 gHz on mine under load, and the video card voltage goes from
    ..9v. to 1.366v.) and the temperatures of each of the four cores.
    The major differences for me are that the Vegas Movie Studio HD
    Platinum 11 Production Suite, $60 including shipping[!] from Amazon at
    --

    www.amazon.com/Sony-Vegas-Studio-Platinum-Production/dp/B0051M6IPI/ref=sr_1_1?s=software&ie=UTF8&qid=1327939451&sr=1-1
    is that Vegas Pro has more default tracks and they are unnamed
    (but more tracks can be added in both and named anything you want),
    some of the more "esoteric" functions are missing, some file types
    appear to have size limits even when trying to make custom render
    templates - but there are more included transitions, filters, and
    sound effects, plus it includes site upload templates). You can
    find a comparison of features here --
    http://www.sonycreativesoftware.com/moviestudiope/compare
    Video tutorials are here, for Pro --

    http://www.sonycreativesoftware.com/support/trainingvids.asp?prod=vegaspro
    and for MS --

    http://www.sonycreativesoftware.com/support/trainingvids.asp?prod=moviestudio
    And I wrote some basic things (including layout of the software) --
    http://www.donferrario.com/ruether/Sony-editing.htm
    Also, ***IF*** you can figure out what nonstandard terms Sony uses
    for things/operations, you can ask the program for info or even
    get a step-by-step guide within the program (MS) on how to do it!;-)
    And, as others have suggested, there are 30-day trial versions
    available.
    --DR
     
    David Ruether, Jan 30, 2012
    #20
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