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Which quality setting is best 50p 50i or 25p?

Apnomis

Established Member
I own a Sony CX410 and I am planning to use it to record my wedding at the weekend but I'm not sure which format would be best to record in? Obviously being my wedding it's one of those once in a lifetime home movies that you are going to want to get right - both in terms of quality and compatibility, but I'm not sure which setting to use to achieve this?

Obviously when I first bought the camera my instinct was to set it to PS 1080p 50p but this format seems largely unsupported - it won't for example play back via USB on my SmartTV. So now I'm in two minds whether to use this format to record my wedding? Is it just that this is the cutting edge standard and eventually tech will catch up with it?

Or would it be more sensible to use one of the other Highest Quality settings at 50i or 25p? Would I realistically notice any quality difference between these formats? In which case is it better to record it in a format that's compatible with most devices?

In which case the final choice is 50i or 25p? I've always associated interlacing with flickery picture, which makes me think 25p would be better, but I don't know how much impact of going from 50 to 25?

Sorry if this is a dumb question but I'm a complete novice when it comes to video camera formats - it was only really bought to record the wedding...

Any help or advice would be appreciated...
 

chrishull3

Prominent Member
Hi i have cams that record all those frame rates,it is generaly agreed that 50P is best for fast moving action,personaly i stick to 25P as i see no difference personaly for what i film and it is easier to edit and gives more card space than 5OP,probobly best to experiment if you have the frame rates available and see what suites you best.
 

rogs

Prominent Member
Record in 50p.

If you need to, you can always edit to 25p - or even 50i - from your 'master' 50p footage at any time in the future.
It's not so easy to go the other way though....there are ways of doubling the fame rate, and adding motion interpolation, to try and 'fake' 50p footage from a lower quality source, but it's no where near the quality of recording at 50p in the first place.....
 

Apnomis

Established Member
Record in 50p.

If you need to, you can always edit to 25p - or even 50i - from your 'master' 50p footage at any time in the future.
It's not so easy to go the other way though....there are ways of doubling the fame rate, and adding motion interpolation, to try and 'fake' 50p footage from a lower quality source, but it's no where near the quality of recording at 50p in the first place.....

Is that something that is relatively easy to do? You don't need expensive software and hours of video conversion time?
 

rogs

Prominent Member
Is that something that is relatively easy to do? You don't need expensive software and hours of video conversion time?
You don't need expensive software - in fact you can do it with free software - but that would require a bit of a learning curve -- so you might need to spend some time on that.
I'm pretty sure most of the 'easy to use' editors like - Sony Vegas or Corel for example - can deal with this OK. Some of out members here use those, so maybe they can confirm?......

The point I was making is that for a special occasion, then record at the best quality. You can't just do it again, if you wish you had a better quality version in the future. The USB sockets in Smart TVs tend to be a bit picky. My Panasonic, for example handles 50p footage fine. So it seems a shame to restrict the quality for just one TV that you have at present....

1080/50p is also not part of the original Blu-ray spec (although it is now!) so that can be a limitation if you're thinking of making Blu-rays.

If you're thinking of making DVDs than you'll have to edit and recode the footage anyway......

I just think it would be a mistake to record something special at less than top quality, just to suit an immediate requirement......

Only in my opinion of course! :)

 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
The software isn't really the issue, conversion from 50p to 25p isn't that hard. The issue is trying to edit 50p footage on a underpowered computer is a very frustrating experience. The simplest solution is to use an editor that supports proxy editing. Basically the software produces lower resolution copies of the original clips. These are used to allow real time preview of edits, effects etc. The final output simply substitutes the full quality clips for the final output, applying the same edits etc. It can take a long time but you don't have to be present. If you output the project at 1080p25 and then get 1080p50 capable kit, you can simply open the original project and re-render using the original project files without any further effort.

TBH the difference between 1080p25 and 1080p50 is subtle to say the least. Blu-ray for instance is 1080p24 at bitrates very similar to those used in a camcorder for 1080p50. 1080p24 is supported by all blu-ray players and every HD media player I have ever used.

Most would think blu-ray is pretty good quality.
 

Terfyn

Prominent Member
Sony Vegas or Corel for example - can deal with this OK. Some of out members here use those, so maybe they can confirm?......
rogs is right. Your editor will translate the recording format to the output you want.
Just make sure the person holding your camera is sober and knows what they are doing.:clap:
 

rogs

Prominent Member
. The issue is trying to edit 50p footage on a underpowered computer is a very frustrating experience. The simplest solution is to use an editor that supports proxy editing.


....Or re-encode the video to a low powered 'computer friendly' format like Cineform or Canopus HQ ?... ( converters for both formats are now free). Then editing 1080/50p is as simple as editing DV! :)

The point I was making is that it seems a shame to record special footage at less than best quality, simply to meet the limitations of the various editing and playback formats currently available.
Record at the best quality. Keep your 'master' footage complete, and then make copies, to investigate the best way to edit and distribute for the present.
OK, a bit more time consuming in the immediate future, but you have your best quality master footage for the future....

Regarding the difference between 25p and 50p being 'subtle'..... that depends on the footage. For a wedding, you're probably right of course, but for anything with motion, I think the 'smoothness' of 50 frames does make a difference.

In fact I prefer 720/50p to 1080/25p in most cases!.....

 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam

....Or re-encode the video to a low powered 'computer friendly' format like Cineform or Canopus HQ ?... ( converters for both formats are now free). Then editing 1080/50p is as simple as editing DV! :)

The point I was making is that it seems a shame to record special footage at less than best quality, simply to meet the limitations of the various editing and playback formats currently available.
Record at the best quality. Keep your 'master' footage complete, and then make copies, to investigate the best way to edit and distribute for the present.
OK, a bit more time consuming in the immediate future, but you have your best quality master footage for the future....

Regarding the difference between 25p and 50p being 'subtle'..... that depends on the footage. For a wedding, you're probably right of course, but for anything with motion, I think the 'smoothness' of 50 frames does make a difference.

In fact I prefer 720/50p to 1080/25p in most cases!.....

Proxy editing preserves your original clips anyway, my post didn't disagree in any way. You are right of course converting to an intraframe compatible format will work, it does however require a degree of understanding of the process and therefore some additional complexity. Some editors do this completely automatically so for a beginner should considerably simplify the process and the created project files require no understanding of the process. It's simply a matter of loading the project and selecting a different output option. I also agree 720p50 can look as good or better than 1080i50 or 1080p25 with some content at the same bitrate, try and convince HD broadcasters though and the average punter. Resolution isn't everything.
 

chrishull3

Prominent Member
As far as best quality goes 50P has no higher resoultion than than the other frame rates,for some film content like filming racing it would be an advantage for slow motion,for other types the extra card space it uses is not worth it for me but if your pc & software can handle it fine,the next real improvement in video is 4K and that is a noticable improvement.
 

Kevo

Prominent Member
As far as best quality goes 50P has no higher resoultion than than the other frame rates,for some film content like filming racing it would be an advantage for slow motion,for other types the extra card space it uses is not worth it for me but if your pc & software can handle it fine,the next real improvement in video is 4K and that is a noticable improvement.

Disagree, I think 1080 50p has huge potential that has never been tapped into by tv due to bandwidth restrictions.
I would much prefer they invested in this than 4K. Interlaced tv is as old as television itself and just does not lend itself to the digital age. 50p makes a huge difference in quality.
 

chrishull3

Prominent Member
Disagree, I think 1080 50p has huge potential that has never been tapped into by tv due to bandwidth restrictions.
I would much prefer they invested in this than 4K. Interlaced tv is as old as television itself and just does not lend itself to the digital age. 50p makes a huge difference in quality.
Oh well i disagree with you but i i am not going to take two identical clips of the same scene with 50P & 25P to show as i know myself on normal speed footage i am happy with 25P,each to their own.But 4k compared to 1080P 50p another league :rolleyes:
 

rogs

Prominent Member
For me, a progressive frame rate of 50, as opposed to 25, is more important than the extra resolution. As I tend to watch most of my stuff on either a 24" computer monitor or a 37" TV, then 1080 - and certainly 4K - would make little difference to me.
The extra 'smoothness' in footage shot at 50 frames rather than 25 - especially in motion footage - makes a big difference, regardless of the size of image I'm watching.

But we all have different preferences......
 

chrishull3

Prominent Member
True each to their own,but if my camcorder 50P footage looked any smoother played direct to tv i would use it despite my PC which has to be renewed soon struggling and the extra card use,age 50P takes.But my cam gets little use now as i prefer the lovely colour my stills camera gives but that only does 25P.
 

Apnomis

Established Member
Many thanks everyone - looks like I was worrying over nothing and 1080p 50p is the way to go.

I will be getting a new laptop soon after the wedding (minimum 4th gen i5 with 8GB and probably SSD) so computer power won't be an issue. I wouldn't attempt to do anything with my current home PC, it struggles to boot up Windows 7 nowadays!

Thanks for the tips about software too, I'll check them out...
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
For me, a progressive frame rate of 50, as opposed to 25, is more important than the extra resolution. As I tend to watch most of my stuff on either a 24" computer monitor or a 37" TV, then 1080 - and certainly 4K - would make little difference to me.
The extra 'smoothness' in footage shot at 50 frames rather than 25 - especially in motion footage - makes a big difference, regardless of the size of image I'm watching.

But we all have different preferences......

Surprised you think 50p looks good on a monitor. Anything not based on 30/60 refresh rates looks bad on any monitor I know of. Monitors (and laptops) rarely if ever do anything but 60Hz refresh rates.

My new I7 Win 7 64 bit Full HD laptop can only do 1920 x 1080 at 60Hz, compared to a TV 50p footage isn't fantastic.
 

12harry

Distinguished Member
I continue to use 50i in the camcorder, yet the files "Properties", show 25fps. I wondered if I'd set "-p" instead of "-i" - but then looking at Properties of my older NEX5 movie-files are also 25fps. This camera didn't offer the "-p" option!

Unfortunately no details whether they are -i, or -p. - btw these are copies of the individual file-clips....not been through an Editor.


- Any thoughts; or is "Properties" just plain wrong?

I understood that "-i" was preferable for DVD compilation, (ie though the Editor). The DVD's appear to play perfectly on several DVD/BD players, through digital TV, or projector.
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
I continue to use 50i in the camcorder, yet the files "Properties", show 25fps. I wondered if I'd set "-p" instead of "-i" - but then looking at Properties of my older NEX5 movie-files are also 25fps. This camera didn't offer the "-p" option!

Unfortunately no details whether they are -i, or -p. - btw these are copies of the individual file-clips....not been through an Editor.


- Any thoughts; or is "Properties" just plain wrong?

I understood that "-i" was preferable for DVD compilation, (ie though the Editor). The DVD's appear to play perfectly on several DVD/BD players, through digital TV, or projector.

1080i50 is 25 fps, only difference is the way the frames are stored. 1080i has two 1/50 second fields, hence 1080i50 (in the UK odd lines are followed by even lines - upper field first).

There's a degree of argument whether the number following the i should be fields or frames. Most use fields for interlaced content.

1080p25 has one single frame progressively delivered lines (1,2,3 ------ 1080)

If the two fields of interlaced are stored or created at the same instant of time (like a film created from a scanned cine frame on HD TV), then 1080i50 and 1080p25 are identical provided the display de-interlaces the footage correctly.

Interlaced content is a hang over from the days when the image was scanned to the screen as it was received as in a CRT TV. Because these rely on the persistant of the screen phosphors then a progressive image would have faded at the top of the screen by the time the last line was scanned. In effect because the last field of the previous frame is interlaced with the first field of the next, the effective frame rate is doubled without any fancy electronic processing.

Medianinfo will tell you if the content is progressive or interlaced. If it's footage from your Sony, then 50i is definitely 25fps. If you want 50 fps then you have to use 1080p50. Never seen 1080i100 which would be interlaced at 50 fps.
 
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PhilipL

Prominent Member
Hi

Surprised you think 50p looks good on a monitor. Anything not based on 30/60 refresh rates looks bad on any monitor I know of. Monitors (and laptops) rarely if ever do anything but 60Hz refresh rates.

My new I7 Win 7 64 bit Full HD laptop can only do 1920 x 1080 at 60Hz, compared to a TV 50p footage isn't fantastic.

There is an extra jerk now and again due to the frame-rate mismatch, but it still looks better than 30fps or 25fps and has more resolution than anything interlaced. Simple solution as I do, is change the graphic card refresh rate to 50Hz, this is fully supported by the vast majority of monitors (if they accept HDMI than it is in the specs), and 1080P at 50fps is mesmerising. All my monitors via VGA or digital have supported 50Hz, the only issue is accessing the setting options in the graphics card driver.

Once 1080P at 50fps is seen, it is hard to go back to anything else, and that includes 4K at YouTube frame-rates of 30 or 24fps. Here's looking forward to 4K at proper 21st century frame-rates.

To the OP, always video in the best quality. 50P will be converted by all editing software to 50i for Blu-ray distribution, of course with a loss in quality but it will still look good. Also 50P will play on modern Blu-ray players (and often network players) via streaming from a PC, it also possible to make a non-standard Blu-ray disc with 50P on it, these have played brilliantly in my Pioneer Blu-ray player, which will also stream the same content via DLNA and my PC.

Regards

Phil
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
Hi



There is an extra jerk now and again due to the frame-rate mismatch, but it still looks better than 30fps or 25fps and has more resolution than anything interlaced. Simple solution as I do, is change the graphic card refresh rate to 50Hz, this is fully supported by the vast majority of monitors (if they accept HDMI than it is in the specs), and 1080P at 50fps is mesmerising. All my monitors via VGA or digital have supported 50Hz, the only issue is accessing the setting options in the graphics card driver.

Once 1080P at 50fps is seen, it is hard to go back to anything else, and that includes 4K at YouTube frame-rates of 30 or 24fps. Here's looking forward to 4K at proper 21st century frame-rates.

To the OP, always video in the best quality. 50P will be converted by all editing software to 50i for Blu-ray distribution, of course with a loss in quality but it will still look good. Also 50P will play on modern Blu-ray players (and often network players) via streaming from a PC, it also possible to make a non-standard Blu-ray disc with 50P on it, these have played brilliantly in my Pioneer Blu-ray player, which will also stream the same content via DLNA and my PC.

Regards

Phil

You have posted this many times. Since the first time I now have the capability to record in 1080p50 and play it back from a number of sources. I have done a number of test recordings and had the chance to do a blind test with a number of people with varying footage and also with content downloaded from the internet, compared with as similar as possible as footage captured in other formats.

As to converting 50p to 50i, why not 25p which would seem to be the more obvious choice ?

Not found anyone who can reliably tell which is the original 50 fps progressive footage.

In general monitors have a minimum refresh of 56Hz, so far not found one that works at 50Hz.

All I can say is try it out, and make up your own mind.

To me this is largely a marketing hype, much like the claimed advantages of mega expensive hdmi interconnects.

Why not post some example footage to a file share site so we can all see and try the major improvements which so far elude me ?

To be truly convincing.

Similar footage at similar bitrates (anything else would be pointless)

Full HD of course.

1080i50 (fields)
1080p24
1080p25
1080p50
1080p60

Time to really show you have a real case.
 
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PhilipL

Prominent Member
Hi

50i footage de-interlaces to 50fps on all modern TVs, this keeps the temporal information, i.e. fields 1 and 2 create frame 1, fields 2 and 3 create frame 2, fields 3 and 4 create frame 3 and so on. Yes interpolated and some TVs do a better job than others at merging the fields and dealing with motion, so 1080 at 50 progressive frames removes all that guess work and improves picture quality.

The clips are out there from all sources, and I've posted them here before now and I'm not having the argument all over again with you. Reviews time and time again have said how good 1080 at 50P is and it is now the standard on most new devices that record video.

50Hz is fine on the vast majority of monitors, and of course all HD TVs support 50Hz. See attached screen shot from my graphics driver page, not that you will accept it.

Regards

Phil
 

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grahamlthompson

In memoriam
screen_2014-04-13 19.57.40.jpg
Hi

50i footage de-interlaces to 50fps on all modern TVs, this keeps the temporal information, i.e. fields 1 and 2 create frame 1, fields 2 and 3 create frame 2, fields 3 and 4 create frame 3 and so on. Yes interpolated and some TVs do a better job than others at merging the fields and dealing with motion, so 1080 at 50 progressive frames removes all that guess work and improves picture quality.

The clips are out there from all sources, and I've posted them here before now and I'm not having the argument all over again with you. Reviews time and time again have said how good 1080 at 50P is and it is now the standard on most new devices that record video.

50Hz is fine on the vast majority of monitors, and of course all HD TVs support 50Hz. See attached screen shot from my graphics driver page, not that you will accept it.

Regards

Phil


Not sure what your point is. Nor what the point of you posting your graphic card capability is. I take it you have a modern desktop PC with a high end graphics card and a monitor that supports 50Hz.

As I said this is increasingly rare and even more so on laptop PC's

For what it's worth here is the equivalent from my laptop.

I wonder how many more here have this capability, all I said was that it's hard to find 50Hz capability and afaik no current laptop has it.

Is anyone else here able to select a 50Hz refresh from there current setup ?

If you aren't prepared to provide any sort of reasonable comparison so that anyone can actually make some sort of blind test as to the veracity of your claims, frankly they mean nothing.

As to your vague assertions re the massive advantages of 1080p50, I can post equally ridiculous assertions re the massively superior performance of vastly over priced hdmi cables.

Not sure what your background is, but in any proper scientific test, you would be expected to post some sort of evidence that can be independently assessed, which you fail to do.

As to posting comparison footage on sites like Vimeo or Youtube, from the point of comparison they are worthless. The recoding they apply renders any comparison totally pointless. The only way is to provide a link to the original uncompromised footage.
 
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chrishull3

Prominent Member
You have posted this many times. Since the first time I now have the capability to record in 1080p50 and play it back from a number of sources. I have done a number of test recordings and had the chance to do a blind test with a number of people with varying footage and also with content downloaded from the internet, compared with as similar as possible as footage captured in other formats.

As to converting 50p to 50i, why not 25p which would seem to be the more obvious choice ?

Not found anyone who can reliably tell which is the original 50 fps progressive footage.

In general monitors have a minimum refresh of 56Hz, so far not found one that works at 50Hz.

All I can say is try it out, and make up your own mind.

To me this is largely a marketing hype, much like the claimed advantages of mega expensive hdmi interconnects.

Why not post some example footage to a file share site so we can all see and try the major improvements which so far elude me ?

To be truly convincing.

Similar footage at similar bitrates (anything else would be pointless)

Full HD of course.

1080i50 (fields)
1080p24
1080p25
1080p50
1080p60

Time to really show you have a real case.

Yes i have done similar tests myself with my HF-G30 25p 50P and 35Mbps Mpeg4 and find the footage looks the same and is why i keep to 25P for more card space and faster editing on my aging PC.
 
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PhilipL

Prominent Member
Hi

View attachment 476399


Not sure what your point is. Nor what the point of you posting your graphic card capability is. I take it you have a modern desktop PC with a high end graphics card and a monitor that supports 50Hz.

As I said this is increasingly rare and even more so on laptop PC's

For what it's worth here is the equivalent from my laptop.

I wonder how many more here have this capability, all I said was that it's hard to find 50Hz capability and afaik no current laptop has it.

Is anyone else here able to select a 50Hz refresh from there current setup ?

If you aren't prepared to provide any sort of reasonable comparison so that anyone can actually make some sort of blind test as to the veracity of your claims, frankly they mean nothing.

As to your vague assertions re the massive advantages of 1080p50, I can post equally ridiculous assertions re the massively superior performance of vastly over priced hdmi cables.

Not sure what your background is, but in any proper scientific test, you would be expected to post some sort of evidence that can be independently assessed, which you fail to do.

As to posting comparison footage on sites like Vimeo or Youtube, from the point of comparison they are worthless. The recoding they apply renders any comparison totally pointless. The only way is to provide a link to the original uncompromised footage.

Nothing high-end here. Try right clicking on your desktop, find Graphics options and see if you have an option for 'Custom Resolutions'. If you have then in here you just add a 50Hz option, job done. Laptops tend to be less flexible but I can do this on my work laptop on the Nvidia card and the Intel graphics card (it has both).

I get it, you don't see a difference between 25P and 50P, that's a shame. If you are happy with 25P that's fine, it's your choice, your decision. I've given up arguing with you. In the same vane, you should understand other people will see a difference betwen 25P and 50P, you just have to accept that, and I'm one of them.

Indeed YouTube is pointless, however Vimeo is good as you can often download the original file, you just need to sign up at no cost of course. Try the famous cat at 50fps , this sold me to 50P straight away. Watch via Vimeo which is 25fps, then download and watch the original.

Regards

Phil
 
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PhilipL

Prominent Member
Hi

Yes i have done similar tests myself with my HF-G30 25p 50P and 35Mbps Mpeg4 and find the footage looks the same and is why i keep to 25P for more card space and faster editing on my aging PC.

Of course they look the same, it is the motion that is worlds apart. If you can't see the difference then you are missing out or having something in your work flow that always finds you back at 25fps. But hey if you are happy with the output it's fine, but a lot of people will appreciate the difference.

Regards

Phil
 

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