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Nikon J1 video play back

Frank Hue

Novice Member
I have taken some videos with my Nikon J1 and when I try to play them back on my lap top they stutter any clues as to why?
 

rogs

Prominent Member
The Nikon records HD video as MOV files, which are encoded as H.264/MPEG4 Advanced Video Coding.
This will produce a highly compressed video file, which will need a pretty high powered computer to replay smoothly.
What is the spec of your laptop?...... you probably need at least a quad core or an i5 processor for 'smooth' video replay... You might get away with a slightly lower powered processor.....
 

Frank Hue

Novice Member
Thank you Rogs my spec for lap top is a Sony Vaio, Intel Centino Duo, 2g RAM, 32 bit op system. I take it this is not powerful enough, I have looked on line at program's that convert the video but I'm sure about that. Well have you any suggestion?
 

rogs

Prominent Member
It will depend on what you are hoping to see at this stage?.........if you are intending to view your video at the original quality, then the only way I can think of getting smooth playback with your existing lap top is to turn into a format like a Cineform file, which you should be able to achieve using the free Gro Pro editing software which you can find here: GoPro Studio Edit Software

EDIT: You can convert using the 'Gropro' software linked to above, but you may have to jump through a few hoops..... That software doesn't like the audio from the J1 as it is, so you would need to change the header. Quick, easy and free to do, but more hassle!

The other alternative is to use the Canopus HQ codec instead. That will accept the Nikon files as they are, and convert them into one of several formats to make it easier to play on a lower spec laptop. Free to download, but you do have to register with a (free) Grass Valley account to get access to it..... Again, not difficult, but more hassle!
There will be a downside to watching your High Definition video 'smoothly' on your laptop. The new Cineform or Canopus files created by the software will be much bigger than the originals. Something like 7 or 8 times the size of the original! This is because the files are really intended as intermediate editing files, and would therefore only normally be temporary. They do however require much less computer processing powerto play smoothly...

The other alternative would be to down size the video to standard definition. That would create smaller files, but you would lose quality.........either of the two ways above will let you do that...

As I say, it depends on what you are expecting from your current laptop.....just a quick viewing should be OK. Keeping them to always view on your laptop, and they'll probably be too large to store in that format.....
 
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12harry

Distinguished Member
You could try taking yr vid file to PC WOrld and see if any PC will playback "as-is". However, I suspect you will need to Edit your clips (anyway), so then you can render the clips (It take Time) so these can be replayed.
Soon, however, you'll find that a real camcorder is far better & easier to use.
 

rogs

Prominent Member
You could try taking yr vid file to PC WOrld and see if any PC will playback "as-is"
A better specified PC or laptop will play the Nikon footage. My i5 plays sample raw Nikon J1 footage fine. In this case, the OPs question was what did he need to convert the footage to play on his existing laptop?
I made some (free) suggestions that would solve that problem.
As it happens, he's not been back here since last Thursday anyway......so he's probably found a solution elsewhere..
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
You could try taking yr vid file to PC WOrld and see if any PC will playback "as-is". However, I suspect you will need to Edit your clips (anyway), so then you can render the clips (It take Time) so these can be replayed.
Soon, however, you'll find that a real camcorder is far better & easier to use.

What a salesman at Currys/PC World would know about replaying video files would fit on a tram ticket. In any case the only software they would have installed is Windows Media Player. There are loads of free media players that can play pretty well any format (VLC is arguably the one with the capability to play a vast range of video formats).

Basically a total waste of fuel to get there. :)
 

12harry

Distinguished Member
As I read it, OP made it pretty clear he's not able to sort out the playback, etc, so Codecs and the like are so much added confusion.... whereas a trip to PC World might resolve the playback issue - at least he'll see what prices are current and maybe stroll over to the camcorders (or go nearby to wherever they are available, etc.).
Buying at PCW is likely to be expensive, but clearly some folks think it worthwhile. Alternative, is a local PC supplier who will make sure the software/graphics card/etc are suitable for the task.

I don't understand why Posts need attack, when all one is trying to do is /Assist/match the request. If earlier suggestions work for him, then I'm sure he's quite capable of ignoring all others. If subsequent Posters have misunderstood the Q. then it might help to provide a correction, but this should be done with care, as we are all providing our time free.
Of course joining a FilmMaking Club could be good too, and surely a very positive use of fuel?
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
As I read it, OP made it pretty clear he's not able to sort out the playback, etc, so Codecs and the like are so much added confusion.... whereas a trip to PC World might resolve the playback issue - at least he'll see what prices are current and maybe stroll over to the camcorders (or go nearby to wherever they are available, etc.).
Buying at PCW is likely to be expensive, but clearly some folks think it worthwhile. Alternative, is a local PC supplier who will make sure the software/graphics card/etc are suitable for the task.

I don't understand why Posts need attack, when all one is trying to do is /Assist/match the request. If earlier suggestions work for him, then I'm sure he's quite capable of ignoring all others. If subsequent Posters have misunderstood the Q. then it might help to provide a correction, but this should be done with care, as we are all providing our time free.
Of course joining a FilmMaking Club could be good too, and surely a very positive use of fuel?

You obviously have never asked a PC World sales person a slightly technical question. It's the worst possible place to buy a PC.
Basically they are box shifters whose advice is based on the best commission they get.

From personal experience after sales support is woefull.

Why do think such places try and sell you mega expensive and totally pointless HDMI cables ?

Had you said ask someone who actually builds and sell PC's it would have made a lot more sense. A local computer fair like the one held every week at the National Motorcycle Museum would be a much better option. It's also a location where the OP could actually try a clip and most would even try alternative software.

The choice of programme to play HD content can also make a big difference. VLC on my core 2 laptop would not smoothly play HD, neither would Windows Movie Player. Splash lite from Myrillis worked seamlessly.
 

rogs

Prominent Member
As I read it, OP made it pretty clear he's not able to sort out the playback, etc, so Codecs and the like are so much added confusion....


As I read it-- especially the comments in post #3, where the OP asks for suggestions on how to convert the video -- -I rather felt he was trying to not have to upgrade his current machine?

I don't see why you think 'codecs and the like' are so much added 'confusion'.... I made a couple of suggestions for free software, which would allow him to continue using his existing machine. Quite happy to do a step by step advisory on how to do that.....hopefully that wouldn't necessarily lead to confusion?

(it would be my bad advice if it did! :))
It's really not that difficult, and some of the free software can produce results as good as (and in some cases better) than the consumer 'paid for' editors....
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
As I read it-- especially the comments in post #3, where the OP asks for suggestions on how to convert the video -- -I rather felt he was trying to not have to upgrade his current machine?

I don't see why you think 'codecs and the like' are so much added 'confusion'.... I made a couple of suggestions for free software, which would allow him to continue using his existing machine. Quite happy to do a step by step advisory on how to do that.....hopefully that wouldn't necessarily lead to confusion?

(it would be my bad advice if it did! :))
It's really not that difficult, and some of the free software can produce results as good as (and in some cases better) than the consumer 'paid for' editors....

It's possible the OP may be able to play back his original footage using a less resource intensive media player (Splash Lite (free) ) would be a good one to test. Clearly not going to help with editing though.

I have the paid for version(Splash Pro Ex), it won't however open your Canopus intraframe clip. Windows Media player works fine. Splash is designed for mpeg compressed content.

As an aside Windows Movie Maker works with this as well as the other editors I tried.

Incidentally Rogs I think you should write a step by step guide (I can't think of a better topic for a sticky), and if you feeling really generous a beginners guide to avisynth scripting.

Regards

Graham
 

MarkE19

Moderator
Incidentally Rogs I think you should write a step by step guide (I can't think of a better topic for a sticky), and if you feeling really generous a beginners guide to avisynth scripting.
If we do get some good guides I am happy to create a sticky with links to each of them in it, but we don't want 101 guides all as stickies as it would make finding new threads a pain :facepalm:

Mark.
 

rogs

Prominent Member
Incidentally Rogs I think you should write a step by step guide (I can't think of a better topic for a sticky), and if you feeling really generous a beginners guide to avisynth scripting.
I'm flattered that you think I should write a guide Graham...I'm afraid the reality is probably a little different :)

As far as AVISynth is concerned, I'm very much a beginner myself. In common with many other people, I have tended to shy away from AVISynth in the past, simply because writing scripts seemed so difficult, especially if you were not very 'geeky'....
All I have done since then is realised that other people are very good at this sort of thing, and all I needed to do was to 'borrow' their scripts in order to perform certain functions that can prove to be difficult using standard editors (like Slo-mo for example!).

I have to confess that I was amazed at how good the effect of using MVtools2 within an AVISynth Script can be.
This version of my boat clip : http://www.jp137.com/lvs/06mv0.1.mp4
which slows the action by 10 times, and
still allows for 'smooth' background movement I found astonishing. The AVISynth script to do that was only a few lines long:
(copy here: http://www.jp137.com/lts/MVTools sequence .avs)

In the case of simple actions - like fading in the beginning and fading out the end of a clip, with 2 second fades -- the script is ridiculously simple
(see here: http://www.jp137.com/lts/fade basic.avs)

And there are thousands of scripts - and many tutorials all over the web - using AVISynth
A good place to start is here: Avisynth wiki

Of course, it does depend on how exactly you use it as to whether it is 'easy' or not.

In my case, I am only using it with my intraframe footage, so the 'AVI source' initial clip instruction is fine for that. Compressed formats will need a different 'Directshow' source approach (Haven't tried that at all, so I can't comment on how easy or effective that method is - sorry)

Once installed, AVISynth scripts run in the background, and act as a 'frameserver' to your editor. I only use it with Virtualdub: ( VirtualDub download (at SourceForge) - virtualdub.org) - which is also free - so I can't comment on how easy (or not) it is to use with other editors?

As far as the editor is concerned, your AVISynth script is a video file... that's how it sees it.

One extra (free!) tool I found invaluable was this script editor: AvsPmod 2.5.1

So, armed with AVISynth and Virtualdub installed, you then proceed to write (or borrow) a script as a simple text file in Notepad - or a similar program. Save the file with a '.avs' extension instead of '.txt'

To make sure your script (now an '.avs' file) is likely to work, open it in AvsPmod. You can then edit it, add to it, preview the video, etc etc. Once happy it runs in that editor, save it again as a '.avs' file.

Then, take that file and use Virtualdub to open (or 'run') it. Select your export settings (using 'fast recompress', for example, saves any unnecessary colour space conversion in Virtualdub). Select your output codec (I prefer x.264)........and press enter.

Virtualdub will than produce your output file, automatically processing your video as the script requests....

... And that's it!

Of course you can get pretty involved in the more complex aspects if you wish ( there's an entire AVISynth sub culture on forums like Doom 9 ! ) but you don't have to.

There are two more hoops you need to jump through, to use the MVtools2 option for 'slo mo'.....

You need to download the zip file of that tool from here: MVTools (download at the bottom of the page --section VI)

Unzip the mvtools2 download into it's own folder, and then copy the DLL file into your AVISynth 'plugins' folder...... That's it!

Once you start playing, AVISynth can become strangely addictive... be warned!.....

Regarding an 'intraframe' format guide... I think that's likely to open a can of worms....

As Harry has commented, a lot of folk just find this confusing, and as Mark has said a whole string of guides is not on. And there are lots of ways of doing this... depending on your own system and preferences.
Personally, I prefer the Canopus HQ format. It's very flexible, very high quality, and when used with their AVCHD2HQ converter utility is capable of a great many high quality conversion options. I think folk would be best served by us replying to individual requests for specific help. A 'one size fits all' is not likely to be a viable option (IMHO of course!)

The alternative Cineform codec is also very good, and probably easier to access via the free GoPro editing software. But it doesn't offer the multitude of options that using the Canopus codec and converter does.....

Having said that, if you go the AVISynth and Virtualdub route, both codecs appear automatically in Virtualdub, and can be used easily......









 
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grahamlthompson

In memoriam
I'm flattered that you think I should write a guide Graham...I'm afraid the reality is probably a little different :)

As far as AVISynth is concerned, I'm very much a beginner myself. In common with many other people, I have tended to shy away from AVISynth in the past, simply because writing scripts seemed so difficult, especially if you were not very 'geeky'....
All I have done since then is realised that other people are very good at this sort of thing, and all I needed to do was to 'borrow' their scripts in order to perform certain functions that can prove to be difficult using standard editors (like Slo-mo for example!).

I have to confess that I was astonished at how good the effect of using MVtools2 within an AVISynth Script has been.
This version of my boat clip : http://www.jp137.com/lvs/06mv0.1.mp4
which slows the action by 10 times, and
still allows for 'smooth' background movement I found astonishing. The AVISynth script to do that was only a few lines long:
(copy here: http://www.jp137.com/lts/MVTools sequence .avs)

In the case of simple actions - like fading in the beginning and fading out the end of a clip, with 2 second fades -- the script is ridiculously simple
(see here: http://www.jp137.com/lts/fade basic.avs)

And there are dozens of scripts - and many tutorials - all over the web on using AVISynth
A good place to start is here: Avisynth wiki

Of course, it does depend on how exactly you use it as to whether it is 'easy' or not.

In my case, I am only using it with my intraframe footage, so the 'AVI source' initial clip instruction is fine for that.

Once installed, AVISynth scripts run in the background, and act as a 'frameserver' to your editor. I only use it with Virtualdub: ( VirtualDub download (at SourceForge) - virtualdub.org) - which is also free - so I can't comment on how easy (or not) it is to use with other editors?

As far as the editor is concerned, your AVISynth script is a video file... that's how it sees it.

One extra (free!) tool I found invaluable was this script editor: AvsPmod 2.5.1

So, armed with AVISynth and Virtualdub installed, you then proceed to write (or borrow) a script as a simple text file in Notepad - or a similar program. Save the file with a '.avs' extension instead of '.txt'

To make sure your script (now an '.avs' file) is likely to work, open it in AvsPmod. You can then edit it, add to it, preview the video, etc etc. Once happy it runs in that editor, save it again as a '.avs' file.

Then, take that file and use Virtualdub to open (or 'run') it. Select your export settings (using 'fast recompress', for example, saves any unnecessary colour space conversion in Virtualdub). Select your output codec (I prefer x.264)........and press enter.

Virtualdub will than produce your output file, automatically processing your video as the script requests....

... And that's it!

Of course you can get pretty involved in the more complex aspects if you wish ( there's an entire AVISynth sub culture on forums like Doom 9 ! ) but you don't have to.

There are two more hoops you need to jump through, to use the MVtools2 option for 'slo mo'.....

You need to download and install that tool from here: MVTools (download at the bottom of the page --section VI)

Unzip the mvtools2 download into it's own folder, and then copy the DLL file into your AVISynth 'plugins' folder...... That's it!

Once you start playing, AVISynth can become strangely addictive... be warned!.....

Regarding an 'intraframe' format guide... I think that's likely to open a can of worms....

As Harry has commented, a lot of folk just find this confusing, and as Mark has said a whole string of guides is not on. And there are lots of ways of doing this... depending on your own system and preferences.
Personally, I prefer the Canopus HQ format. It's very flexible, very high quality, and when used with their AVCHD2HQ converter utility is capable of a great many high quality conversion options. I think folk would be best served by us replying to individual requests for specific help. A 'one size fits all' is not likely to be a viable option (IMHO of course!)

The alternative Cineform codec is also very good, and probably easier to access via the free GoPro editing software. But it doesn't offer the multitude of options that using the Canopus codec and converter does.....

Having said that, if you go the AVISynth and Virtualdub route, both codecs appear automatically in Virtualdub, and can be used easily......









Hi Rogs, thanks for the script. I will have a look at it and if there's code I don't get I will come back again. Been a while since I did any script programming.
 
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12harry

Distinguished Member
Hi Guys - yep "Scripting" it confuses me, but that shouldn't stop my interest, so if you have the time then pse, write that Tutorial. . . Currently the Editor I'm using is Sony MSv12; so any software suggestions ( er not Ditch it!), in regard to Scripts would be interesting.
Although normally things go just fine...Editing, rendering, etc. ... maybe in the future I can do more stuff, dunno yet - as I find the filming the big challenge and wonder on my return "who filmed that?" - and sometimes: "why didn't I include...?"
The CX410 is performing well (within the limitations above), and whilst I'd like a Z5 it's far to big/heavy for days out when I'd have to take a pro-tripod to support it. Maybe once in a while I should borrow one, just to see how good HD can be.
 

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