Sunday, March 8, 2009

Video Workflow for the Geeky...

Okay, here's the workflow for posting that kind of video for those interested in such things...

I record the video of the service with a Canon HV-20 camcorder on a tripod at 1060i30 resolution. I also record the audio with an M-Audio Microtrack-II (MP3 at 224kbps / 44.1kHz) using a small stereo condenser mic clipped to the same stand that is holding the wireless handheld for the PA system).

I transfer the audio file to ORAC (my computer) and load it into Adobe Audition 3.0. I cut out the sermon, fix the levels and any problems, then save it at 128kps/44.1kHz and upload it to G-Cast where I can pull it later.

Next, I capture the video to my hard drive using HDVSplit. It's a very handy little app that does a good job of capture and happens to be free, too! Normally at this point I just capture what I need, as doing the whole tape takes about an hour.

In Adobe Premiere Pro CS3 I start a new project with the presets for 720p30. I copy and paste the title sequence from the last sermon video into the new project. I modify the things that need modifying and then put the new sermon video in place. Adjust the image, crop and zoom, etc. I then swap the audio track from the video camera with the audio I recorded with the Microtrack and sync them. This step, replacing the audio, makes a HUGE difference.

Once all that's done I export using the Adobe Media Encoder to a Flash video file (.flv) at 425X240, 29.97fps, 1.8kbps, using On2VP6 codec. 10 minutes equals about 150MB. I need to do some experimenting to find the right bandwidth sweet spot to get the size down, but that's not bad as long as my audience has broadband. Rendering an 11 minute file takes about 8 minutes thanks to ORAC's quad core.

At this point I upload the flv file to the COTM server using Dreamweaver (though you can FTP straight from Premiere Pro). I update an XML playlist to make sure the video gets pulled into my video player on the COTM website. And I can make a stand-alone viewing embed video (like the one below) using the same JWZ Player applet. Note that to pull videos from the COTM website onto the blog using the JWZ Player it is essential to have a "crossdomain.xml" file in the root directory of the COTM website.

I know, that sounds really complicated, doesn't it? In some ways it would be easier just to upload everything to You Tube or another video hosting website. But I like the added control of configuring my own player. I also like not being limited to the 10 minutes You Tube allows. Still, these 150MB files chew up server space real quick!

1ee7 users may note that I'm filming in 1060i and editing in 720p. The reason for that is simply that my video camera can't shoot in a progressive 30fps mode (not 720p nor 1080p), but flash does a better job with progressive video--so I have to deinterlace anyway and I might as well do so is such a way as to preserve some of the HD detail. Might be interesting to try the 1080p editing mode for comparison. But you really don't want to shink it down to 425X240 until the very end.


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