Editing HDV: A Look at the NLE Solutions

DMN By Heath McKnight Though there were some issues editing HDV early on, it has become an easy process in all major and most consumer NLEs. Whether you choose to cut in native HDV, or using a DI (Digital Intermediate), editing this popular new video codec is easy, if you have the right tools. I’ll be taking a look at all the NLE apps out there, big and small, and some of the proxy solutions to help out if your camera or deck aren’t yet supported, or your computer is older and upgrading may be out of the question. Some points when deciding on your NLE:
  1. Apple vs. Windows: If you’re already working with one, stick with it. It’s tough trying to edit with Sony Vegas on a PC if you’re emailing from a separate Apple laptop. Best to have the same systems.
  2. How fast is your system? How much hard drive space do you have? Those two factors can help you decide if you need a proxy or a DI solution, detailed later in this article. Also, you’ll need a firewire or iLink (IEEE 1394) i/o port to capture the HDV footage, just like DV.
  3. Do you already have an NLE you use regularly? Stick with it and don’t try switching teams. Though all edit systems have similarities, it’s best to go with what you’re familiar with, and more than likely, it’s already up-to-date for cutting HDV.
  4. If you’re buying a new system, do you want additional hardware support to capture and edit in uncompressed HD, or better real-time? In some cases, like seeing your edits on a preview monitor in Final Cut Pro, it’s mandatory.
But first, a background on some of the issues of editing HDV. Read more...

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