Final Cut Pro and Apple Compressor settings for WD TV Live

My original video was shot 1080 x 1440 60i, approximately 25mb/sec, regular 1080i SONY HDV tape. Final Cut Pro was set to 1080i HDV upon capture. I am running the latest version of Final Cut Pro and Compressor. In Compressor I am doing H.264 encoding to 1920 x 1080, de-interlacing and set the video to the CURRENT frame rate, BEST quality, MULTI-PASS and AUTOMATIC data rate. With the AUTOMATIC data rate you cannot select optimization for STREAMING or DOWNLOAD, so it is grayed out. 4 minutes of video is 2GB. The video is a wedding with different parts, ceremony, reception, etc. This is the response from the end user:  “The first time we watched the entire video, it didn’t freeze until the end of the reception. A couple of days later, we started it from the beginning and it freezes at the first part of … one of the segments…, then after a few minutes it will start again without the music. I did see the time at the bottom but it’s different every time.” It is a Western Digital Live with a 1.5TB Seagate 7200 RPM USB2.0 drive (ST315005EXA101) formatted to be read on a PC. I am not sure if it is NTFS or FAT. These units ship saying they are NOT mac compatible. There is one video file that is 22GB on it. In the standard Quick Time player the inspector said one of the clips is 65Mbit/sec. I know that mb and bit are NOT the same thing but I am thinking my file size is to big. A file bigger than the original does not add any resolution. I am thinking I need to restrict to 20,000 kbits/sec and optimize for streaming. As a rule of thumb Vimeo optimization recommends restricting HD to 5,000 kbits/sec, but that is 720 max, not 1080. This can definitely be bigger than Vimeo quality considering it is playing directly off a decent hard drive. What do you think and what has worked for you?

First, use the “Enter” key once or twice.   :slight_smile:

Am I doing my math right?   The original file is 16 Mbit/sec for 1080x1440? 

And you’re UPCONVERTING to 1080p, at 65 Mbit/sec?   WOW, that’s a SLAUGHTER.

There’s no reason for the final product to have a bit rate 4 times higher than the source.   

20 Mbit / sec isn’t too bad for a local hard drive or Wired WDTV, but it might be too much for many wireless users.

As to your whole process, I think that’s going to be WAY too specific to get a detailed answer here, but hopefulyl someone might shed some light on their ideas…

Welcome to the forums.

First of all, don’t compress coming out of FCP.  Just output as DV uncompressed (most likely to an AVI container, but it’s been YEARS since I’ve used FCP so I don’t know what the current defaults are).  Then run the resultant video through Handbrake, using the High Profile preset but output to an MKV container.

This will work MUCH better – Handbrake does H264 much better than FCP, and many folks have had great success with this workflow.  And we know that the Live loves MKV files produced with Handbrake using the High Profile preset (which will be perfect HD quality for you).

No offence to mKelly, but I think he means “output to HDV”. Outputting to DV would downsample everything to standard def which is a big no-no but would have been the standard a few years ago. As to the other details of the original question, sorry but I don’t work enough in hi-def to know. I would try talking HDV directly in to Windows Media Encoder. I use that for all my standard def encodeing and it works pretty well. But I always have to tweak  the compression settings. The prefab compression rates are always a little too aggressive for me.