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Old 07-18-2007, 04:33 PM   #1
Martin_Gleeson
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Default Procoder and Encore? Tough choice

When I upgraded Encore to 2.0, the Procoder generated MPEG2 files just wouldn't play nice with it. I have constant lockup and freezing problems. This happened on two completely different PC's. I had to revert back to Encore 1.5.

I have just ordered PPRO and Encore CS3. From reading the forums at Adobe, it seems I may have to make a choice. Encore and ProCoder MPEG files just don't seem to work well together. I have tried so many different combinations and settings when creating my MPEG files, but they will not work in Encore 2.0.

Has anyone gone to CS3 and have they had such problems?

If I have to choose, then I think I would choose Encore CS3 and let it do the encoding. I mostly do CBR at 7000bps encoding, so I would imagine that Encore would do just as good a job as Procoder. Any views?

My understanding is that Canopus blame Adobe for the problems and Adobe blame Canopus.

Thanks
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Last edited by Martin_Gleeson; 07-18-2007 at 06:22 PM.
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Old 07-18-2007, 06:22 PM   #2
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Before reading this, I should point out that the problem occurs in Encore's MPEG2 decoder. That is: When you play back a Procoder MPEG2 file in the Encore preview windows, you get artifacts, green flashes, and eventually, Encore will completely freeze up and must be re-started. The final DVD does NOT show any of these artifacts as the already transcoded Procoder MPEG2 files are not changed by Encore.

The real issue (for me) is when you create menus with motion thumbnails. You often see these on Chapter menus. You can see an sample of what I'm talking about here (1mb download).

Encore uses a small section of your video to create these thumbnails. As a result, it needs to decode these sections of the Procoder MPEG2 file and re-encode it into their menus. This will cause the artifacts to appear in your thumbnail videos and almost always cause Encore to crash when encoding the menus.

If you don't use these motion menu thumbnails in Encore, then you wont have (much) of an issue with Encore 2.0.


After some more research, I think I have found the two sides of the argument. But I stand to be corrected by Canopus:


Following is an opinion that the problem is with Encore:

Quote:
After much "to"ing and "fro"ing with Adobe support, I think I have tracked down the problem. If you go into the advanced settings on Procoder and set frame based encoding to "field" you will find that the resulting files play fine in Encore 2. However you will lose compatibility with some early DVD players that required encoding to be frame based. This is a bug in Encore 2 playback engine ... which cannot handle frame based encoding and needs to be fixed.

I have hesitated to post this fix as I have not had enough time to confirm it (only two projects to date) but it does appear to be the problem. I welcome confirmation from other ProCoder users.

Following is an opinion that the problem is with Procoder:

Quote:
Ultimately, the problem is that Premiere's MPEG decoder cannot correctly decode Canopus' MPEG-2 file- and the reason given is that Canopus' header file is such that it favors their decoder, which causes Adobe's own decoder to error. This should have no effect on DVD playback, however.

A little history is in order: Encore 2.0 switched from Microsoft DirectShow for video playback to the Premiere playback engine in order to solve possible compatibility problems that turned out to be inherent using DirectShow- installing codecs could possibly kill Encore video/audio playback. The Premiere engine has shown itself to be more robust- but apparently not without its own quirks.

Since Encore 2.0 relies on the Premiere playback engine, the source of a fix- if there's even the slightest possibility that it's an Adobe problem- would have to come from the Premiere team. And their position has been that this is a Canopus problem.
So, I can check if the problem still exists in Encore CS3 shortly. I only have Procoder 1.5, so don't know if anything has been changed in Procoder 2.0 which could affect or correct this problem (i.e. the "Canopus' header file")
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Old 07-18-2007, 11:07 PM   #3
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Reading the opinions stated... Both field-based and frame-based encoding are part of the MPEG-2 spec, so not to point fingers, but a proper MPEG-2 decoder should decode either encoding type, regardless of whose decoder it is.
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Old 07-19-2007, 12:06 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrassValley_BH View Post
Reading the opinions stated... Both field-based and frame-based encoding are part of the MPEG-2 spec, so not to point fingers, but a proper MPEG-2 decoder should decode either encoding type, regardless of whose decoder it is.
Yes, but that's if you believe the Canopus people whu say that Adobe is at fault.

The other opinion states that Procoder is at fault because of "header information".

Bottom line is: Someone is wrong and the Procoder / Encore users are caught in the middle!
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Old 07-19-2007, 12:34 AM   #5
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I can't think of any MPEG header information that would tell the reader to use a particular decoder though. It's just a raw MPEG file, not an AVI that has a FourCC attached.

Is there another encoder that can create field-encoded MPEG-2? That would help determine if it's just the field/frame encoding, or if it's something more...
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Old 07-19-2007, 02:11 AM   #6
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Hi Martin

I don't know if this helps in your case, but I make all my motion menus with motion thumbs right on the Edius timeline using 3ED PIP etc, then export as a DVD ready m2v+ac3

then in DVD-Lab pro I use the hotspot tool to link various items

this method avoids the double encoding of mpg files and gives far better quality
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Old 07-19-2007, 07:02 PM   #7
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Yes, but I want to use Encore and even though the quality of the thumbnails Encore creates is not as good as yours (used to use your method with ReelDVD), I can't justify the time. Much easier to use Encore and to be honest, how log do people spend watching the chapter links on their DVDs?

I have Encore CS3 now and will see if anything has changed. If not, then I'll try the Adobe forum.

Also want to do a comparison of the Adobe generated MPEG2 file with a Procoder generated file at 7000 CBR and mastering quality.
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Old 07-21-2007, 05:02 PM   #8
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Hello, sorry for my pity english, but perhaps 3 ways :

1. In Edius timeline, after saving my project I erase the key points of the timeline before launching the encoding in Procoder. Especially those which are in the first beginning of the timeline.

2. For Adobe Encore 2.0, in C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Still DVD 2.0 \ Plug-ins \ en_US, I rename ImporterFastMPEG.prm in ImporterFastMPEG.prm.txt for example. No more freezing, no more artifact or of green flashes in the timeline or the animated menus. However the scrubbing of the timeline is a slower little, and the encoding of the animated menus becomes very very slow

3. Perhaps another way inspirated of Anton, in Procoder uncheck Use Strict GOP bitrate control

Hope this can help.
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Old 07-22-2007, 10:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Victor237 View Post
For Adobe Encore 2.0, in C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Still DVD 2.0 \ Plug-ins \ en_US, I rename ImporterFastMPEG.prm in ImporterFastMPEG.prm.txt for example. No more freezing, no more artifact or of green flashes in the timeline or the animated menus. However the scrubbing of the timeline is a slower little, and the encoding of the animated menus becomes very very slow
Thanks so much for the advise. For Adobe Encore CS3. the above also seems to work. But it makes everything run so slow, it's not worth it.
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Old 07-22-2007, 11:21 PM   #10
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I have been using ProCoder2 and Encore1.5 and 2.0 for years....I don't see what the problem is???
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