HD in AE

The thrills never end — today’s offering is a couple of additions to your interpretation rules.txt file in After Effects to support Varicam and Sony HDV footge at their native frame dimensions.

Panasonic Varicam footage is actually stored on tape at 960x720 with a 1.33:1 pixel aspect ratio. Final Cut Pro HD therefore works at this reolution when editing native Varicam. If you want to use this material in AE, the following two lines will auto-identify the footage and set it to the correct pixel aspect:

# Varicam exported from FCP is 960x720 

960, 720, *, *, * = 1280/960/”Varicam”, *, *, *

The Sony HDV 1080 spec is 1440x1080 with that same 1.33:1 pixel aspect. The following two lines interpret this correctly and assume the footage is interlaced:

# Sony HDV is 1440x1080

1440, 1080, *, *, * = 1280/960/”Sony HDV”, U, *, *

I don’t have an HDV cam, but I played around with some samples by converting them to Quicktime using MPEG Streamclip. Thanks to Tim Sassoon for the tip on that one.