Go Pro 3 Black Pro Tune files - render settings

MattAdamson wrote on 12/22/2012, 3:21 PM

I've just purchased a go pro 3 black edition and back from a recent ski trip. I shot the source footage using the 1080p 60fps mode however I also enabled pro tune mode. This has the effect that the files are approximately 45 Mbps. I was wondering given this very high bit rate what the optimum render settings would be to preserve as much quality as possible from the target output.

I'd like to play the files back on my PS3 or standard blu ray player. Would this be the standard blue ray 60i 25Mbps format? Wouldn't a 60p rather than 60i format be better? Also by using 25Mbps rather than one around 45 Mbps wouldn't I be sacrificing some image quality by compressing more? I don't mind take the same disk space as the source footage I just don't want to lose any quality at all.

Appreciate your thoughts




[r]Evolution wrote on 12/22/2012, 4:39 PM
Nice Camera!

Final Render is usually a different CoDec, Size, Bitrate than your capture.
You could play one of your Source Files in QT, VLC, etc., and see what it says the Specs are then render to those specs. In theory this should be lossless but may not guarantee successful playback on your desired device.

I would try one of the BluRay presets and see what it looks like. If not satisfactory, alter the settings... beginning with the bitrate.
MattAdamson wrote on 12/23/2012, 4:35 AM
Thanks, the trouble is by viewing I'm not particularly great at comparing multiple rendered files to see differences. Unless they are very obvious I won't really know. I'd just be happy knowing the final format I produce from my RAW files would be the best I could get when I render and remove the originals.

When I look at properties of one of the files it shows as

Data Rate 48464 kbps
Total bit rate 48598 kbps
Frame rate 59 frames / second ( I wonder why not 60 )
Length 00:00:04
Size 24.6MB

MattAdamson wrote on 12/25/2012, 9:26 AM
Actually related to that I'm not sure the PS3 can even cope with the RAW Pro Tune MP4 files which are 45 Mbps. Although they play back ok on my desktop pc the PS3, even when copied to the hard drive rather than streaming, plays back in a stuttered manner. Perhaps I'll need to render to two formats

1) Playable on the PS3 in as high a bit rate / quality as possible without stutter
2) For archiving and rendering other formats e.g. the output of all the trims of each source clip to create a single MP4 / M2TS file.

I'm not sure exactly what settings I'd need for 1 & 2 though.

I noticed Sony Vegas has a couple of templates which reference .mp4 format i.e.

MainConcept AVC/AAC

I wonder if either format would be similar to the GOPRO MP4 format. I couldn't see any obvious way of detecting the exact codec used from the raw file in Vegas. If I use the option to match the project settings to the media file the template is changed to "Custom (1920x1080, 59.940 fps)" although no other codec information is shown.

Go Pro also offers a cine form studio free download however I don't think this will help. I want to do all my editing in Vegas as cine form studio only offers one simply trim on the source clip whereas typically I might need to split a single MP4 file into many different sections e.g. seconds 2 - 4, 7-10, 14-19 e.t.c.
musicvid10 wrote on 12/25/2012, 9:41 AM
Smart rendering AVC is not an option in Vegas. So there will always be associated encoding losses. With HD source and matched output, this is rarely much of an issue. Download MediaInfo from Sourceforge and find out just what is inside these new files.

Then match the render settings as closely as possible to your source, with the Mainconcept encoder preferably. Another option is render your project to a lossless intermediate such as DNxHD, then do the final encode in x264 (Handbrake). Handbrake CQ will reduce the bitrate and file size to playable levels, without negatively impacting temporal quality.

You can use the free Cineform codec in Vegas without using the Cineform editor. However, that is an intermediate, not a delivery codec.

If you just want to do simple cuts, splits, and trims, VideoRedo TV Suite will do the trick without another encode. There is a free trial. 45 Mbps is quite a bit to ask of any player, though. Again, I'm certain the ProTune variant is intended as an acquisition format, not a delivery / playback format.
[EDIT] Here's a summary I found about the new ProTune format. It's designed to unpack to full 10 bit 4:2:2 in Cineform with neutral full range colorspace. Great idea. Definitely not a playback codec!

[EDIT 2] I forgot to mention, Handbrake will still not open Cineform files afaik.

MattAdamson wrote on 12/25/2012, 12:28 PM
Thanks musicvid,

Your a lot more knowledgeable than I am so forgive my ignorance

I used mediainfo which provides a lot of information below

I couldn't find the DNxHD format you mention in the "Render As" dialog do I need a plug in for this? I didn't fully understand everything in the link you sent and in relation to

"] Here's a summary I found about the new ProTune format. It's designed to unpack to full 10 bit 4:2:2 in Cineform with neutral full range colorspace."

Are you suggesting I should use the free cineform studio to convert each pro tune file before editing Vegas?

Format : MPEG-4
Format profile : JVT
Codec ID : avc1
File size : 88.0 MiB
Duration : 15s 983ms
Overall bit rate mode : Variable
Overall bit rate : 46.2 Mbps
Encoded date : UTC 2012-12-21 15:23:16
Tagged date : UTC 2012-12-21 15:23:16

ID : 1
Format : AVC
Format/Info : Advanced Video Codec
Format profile : High@L4.2
Format settings, CABAC : Yes
Format settings, ReFrames : 1 frame
Format settings, GOP : M=1, N=8
Codec ID : avc1
Codec ID/Info : Advanced Video Coding
Duration : 15s 983ms
Bit rate mode : Variable
Bit rate : 45.0 Mbps
Width : 1 920 pixels
Height : 1 080 pixels
Display aspect ratio : 16:9
Frame rate mode : Constant
Frame rate : 59.940 fps
Color space : YUV
Chroma subsampling : 4:2:0
Bit depth : 8 bits
Scan type : Progressive
Bits/(Pixel*Frame) : 0.362
Stream size : 86.4 MiB (98%)
Title : GoPro AVC
Language : English
Encoded date : UTC 2012-12-21 15:23:16
Tagged date : UTC 2012-12-21 15:23:16
Color primaries : BT.709
Transfer characteristics : BT.709
Matrix coefficients : BT.709

ID : 2
Format : AAC
Format/Info : Advanced Audio Codec
Format profile : LC
Codec ID : 40
Duration : 15s 979ms
Bit rate mode : Constant
Bit rate : 128 Kbps
Channel(s) : 2 channels
Channel positions : Front: L R
Sampling rate : 48.0 KHz
Compression mode : Lossy
Stream size : 250 KiB (0%)
Title : GoPro AAC
Language : English
Encoded date : UTC 2012-12-21 15:23:16
Tagged date : UTC 2012-12-21 15:23:16
musicvid10 wrote on 12/25/2012, 12:46 PM
DNxHD is a free download from Avid. It is a Quicktime custom renderer.

It's use as an intermediate from Vegas to Handbrake is fully explained in the video tutorial.

"Are you suggesting I should use the free cineform studio to convert each pro tune file before editing Vegas? "

If Cineform handles better on the Vegas timeline, go ahead. Since you are not going to be rendering 10 bit 4:2:2 out of Vegas for delivery, that is not a reason. You could, however, render a 10 bit 4:2:2 intermediate from a 32 bit project, and use that in Handbrake, where it will encode to 8 bit 4:2:0. Experiment.

As I mentioned, you need not use the Cineform standalone editor. Once installed, he GoPro Cineform codec is fully accessible within Vegas as a custom AVI renderer.
Best of luck.
farss wrote on 12/25/2012, 2:23 PM
Gentlemen, reading this might help.

musicvid10 wrote on 12/25/2012, 2:36 PM
Thanks, Bob.
Water heater gave out exactly at noon on Christmas day. Had to turn off the main water. Will read later.
musicvid10 wrote on 12/25/2012, 8:20 PM
I've got running water again, out of the cold faucet. The neighborhood hardware store, for the first time in its 50+ year history, chose to stay open until 2:30 pm on Christmas day. I saw that 3/4" IPS pipe cap as nothing less than a blessing, and I told them so.

Now, if one reads between the lines of Mr. Newman's thoughtful explanation (that I need to study a lot more), it could be compellingly interpreted as Adams revisited (buy or borrow the trilogy; read it), where camera file = film, and TV = print. We've been there before; a dynamically superior source serving a mediocre (reduced range) output. The definitions and implications of gamma and log scale are frighteningly recalled by anyone who dealt with exactly the same factors 3-6 decades ago during the photographic print era. That being said, this remarkable summation by Mr. Newman literally knocked me off the blocks:

"Log curves do have an advantage over gamma curves when your goal is to preserve as much of the source dynamic range for later color correction."

Yes, we surmised that several years ago about the time all the animated (and occasionally ridiculous) discussions began on these forums, I having been no less ridiculous than anyone else. Now, it seems, someone is doing something about it, other than by happenstance or through half-baked acknowledgement. Full-range, flat-log source, and let the genius of the editors, tech monkeys, colorists, and creativists of the world conform it for the imperfect delivery formats we never wanted, but have to live with (but hopefully not forever). What a concept!

Seems to me (maybe just me) like the 1960's all over again. Maybe not such a bad thing. In our 21st century milieu of "automatic, instant everything," maybe the notion of full manual, unaffected user control isn't really such a bad idea, ehh! Maybe the true adventurists among us don't need the encoders or the NLE doing it all for us, even if the source is "wrong" when judged only by that narrow interpretation?

And just maybe, all the soccer moms and weekend warriors of the world need a simple, failsafe set of instructions as a kind of prophylactic against all this nonsense?
Just musing here.

"We shall not cease from exploration
-- T.S. Elliot, quoted by John Fowling, The Magus

musicvid10 wrote on 12/25/2012, 9:11 PM
Oh, and for the OP, this may not be your best choice for future acquisition for conventional delivery methods. You may be adjusting output levels, gamma, and god knows what else for your discs, playback files, and streaming media delivery.
farss wrote on 12/25/2012, 10:00 PM
"Oh, and for the OP, this may not be your best choice for future acquisition for conventional delivery methods. You're going to be adjusting output levels, gamma, and god knows what else for your discs, playback files, and streaming media delivery."

No need to adjust anything if you don't need or want to. The RAW image data will be decoded as the camera thought it best it should have had the look baked in if you'd recorded to a Rec709 codec. If the image is basically OK, do nothing.

On the other hand if the say the WB is off you can change it without doing anything like the harm you'd do to a Rec 709 image. To effect that you most likely need to use the GoPro utility to preprocess it before you send it into Vegas. V12 certainly is going down this road as well. It is the future

I've worked with this before with the SI2K.
BMD's new camera is sort of doing the same kind of thing recording CinemaDNG, all the new lineup of Sony Cinealta cameras get close recording S-Log however the top shelf ones also offer the option of RAW...at a BIG price because is 4:4:4 14 bit. Kind of incredibly to find this tech in a sub $1K camera.

musicvid10 wrote on 12/25/2012, 10:17 PM
Seems like the full range adjusted and rendered to 709 luminance with log curves would look pretty flat, esp. the colors, compared to the eyepopping 2.2 gamma we're so accustomed to seeing. But I don't have anything to test with, so that's just a guess.

Also kind of remarkable that GoPro is doing 4K log in a $300 sports camera, even though it will be years before most of us get around to being able to use, or understand it thoroughly.

I'm glad we're on the same page with this, though. Best of the New Year!
farss wrote on 12/25/2012, 11:15 PM
Some more information from David here.

I went back and re-read his other blog, not certain now just how far Pro Tune goes compared to CineformRAW in the SI2K or RedRaw. You're probably correct, it is being decoded to 10 bit S-Log. That shouldn't be a drama as V12 handles this just fine and in much the same way as I described and as explained in a tech note from SCS. Same paradigm applies, Vegas will convert it to Rec 709 using a standard transform which should look just great if you nailed exposure and you're happy with the Look. As David shows in the his second blog though you can recover more highlight etc if you so desire.

"even though it will be years before most of us get around to being able to use, or understand it thoroughly."

It took me years to really understand this stuff. My fatal flaw was trying to fit it into the context of what I already knew. You just have to throw it all out the window and start again. The remarkable thing is once you do that it's less work to understand than the old way of doing things. Theses cameras are basically capturing light, unrestrained by sub par sensors, dynamic range and datarates. In the past you had to nail exposure within 1 stop, today within 2,3..4 or maybe even 5 stops is close enough to be able to "fix it in post".
To put that another way. Before the artist looking at the landscape and putting paint onto canvas was the guy with the camera, today it's becoming the guy in the grading suite. Oh and yes, some DPs are having conniptions :) if they tooks a few deep breaths they'd realise all is under control, their dailies can be made to look "right" thanks to the One Shot Chart.

Glad to hear you have your water heater under control and can get back to enjoying Christmas although I don't envy you having to have cold showers if you're having a white Christmas.
I've been having my own small amount of grief trying to scan one roll of Kodak Plus X Pan negative. The roll has been left wound up in a canister for decades, just getting it to lie flat into the film holder was drama enough. To top it off many of the images are from the Swiss Alps in winter and that's one very high contrast emulsion! I shall not complain though, some other neg I had to deal with from the same gent was home made film and oh my, that was not fun.

musicvid10 wrote on 12/25/2012, 11:26 PM
The solution to your curly film are called Pako clips. Drop in to a commercial photofinishing plant and see if they'll throw you a couple. Raising the humidity helps, too.
farss wrote on 12/26/2012, 12:47 AM
"The solution to your curly film are called Pako clips"

Thanks, I've seen them ages ago but didn't know what they're called.
Probably could have used bulldog clips as the film is dry and there was plenty of head and tail, would have been smarter of me to deal with the problem when I first got the job.

MattAdamson wrote on 12/26/2012, 9:47 AM
Thanks all,

Sorry in spite of the detailed responses I'm still not clear how to proceed. Currently I've added the raw MP4 clips ( 45 mbps ) in pro tune mode to the timeline and trimmed appropriately awaiting to "render as" to my final output for both archiving and playing on the PS3 ( 1 & 2 above ).

Looking at the cineform studio link here


Perhaps I should have processed them in this software first before adding the exported clips to Vegas i.e. it mentions specifically

"Convert GoPro H.264 MP4s into editor friendly CineForm AVI or MOV files"


"GoPro's CineForm Studio line of editing tools makes it easy to create professional quality clips from your GoPro content or prep for more advanced editing with Adobe Premier, Final Cut Pro, Sony Vegas, etc. From simple adjustments like slow motion control and clip trimming to more advanced color correction and 3D editing, CineForm Studio is a powerful tool for all GoPro content creators."

Does the "prep" part mean you would have to use cineform before adding to Vegas? Should I simply generate MOV files from the MP4 files in cineform and then process in Vegas? If so what final file should I use after using all the trimmed clips?

Also musicvid mentioned

"As I mentioned, you need not use the Cineform standalone editor. Once installed, the GoPro Cineform codec is fully accessible within Vegas as a custom AVI renderer.

However after installing cineform I can't see any Go Pro codec for AVI files in "Render As" from Vegas. Where would I expect to see this or is this a separate download from the cineform software?

My new years resolution is to learn codecs a lot more :)
warriorking wrote on 12/26/2012, 11:46 AM
I just used my GoPro Hero 3 White edition on my latest video shoot, did a great job capturing footage my other cams could not do to setup issues...Love this little guy....And being able to control it from across the room with my phone ap made it even better....
farss wrote on 12/26/2012, 3:58 PM
"Perhaps I should have processed them in this software first before adding the exported clips to Vegas"

Yes, maybe :(

From David's blog that I linked to previously:

"Also, the new Protune GoPro clips carry metadata that CineForm Studio detects and automatically develops to look more like a stock GoPro mode, cool-looking and ready for show. All these changes are stored as CineForm Activate Metadata, are non-destructive and reversible, all controlled with the free CineForm Studio software.

Except doing that and outputtung an 8 bit linear gamma file would throw away the advantages of shooting in Pro Tune in the first place.

You would be better off using the paid for Studio Premium version except that makes no mention of GoPro Pro Tune.

What it all comes down to is this as I read it:

1) 8 bit codecs with linear gamma don't do a good job of storing the image from from camera.
2) With such a camera going to 10 or 12 bit S-Log is out of the question because of the data rate.

3) So a custom gamma curve is used to get the best fit.

What seems to me to be missing is anyway to get from GoPro's Pro Tune custom curve into a standard 10 or 12 bit S-Log file using anything.
David makes much in his blog about this camera / codec targetting professional shooters relying on significant post production and yet there's seemingly no support for what are now industry standard ways of working that Vegas 12 supports.

musicvid10 wrote on 12/26/2012, 7:30 PM
No, its not a "Render As" Template.
It is a Codec accessible inside AVI Custom Video Properties as a "Video Format."
That's where all the AVI codecs are to be found.

WRT to the other questions, you may be a trailblazer with handling this new codec in Vegas. Let us know how it turns out.

Uploading a short ProTune camera clip somewhere, shot in full midday light, would be fun for us to play with, and maybe make some suggestions in that respect.
farss wrote on 12/27/2012, 6:46 AM
Musicvid said:
"Now, it seems, someone is doing something about it"

They've been doing something for quite a while.
This blog by Art Adams that I just found here gives some background and also reveals a few tidbits I'd sort of observed but never known for certain.

The most basic issue is that Rec 709 specifies a dynamic range of only 9 stops because that's all most displays can manage and was about all most cameras could manage. That's changed and to quote Art "The trick, of course, is that virtually no camera operates at Rec 709 spec anymore; they operate WITHIN it".

The other revelation I found interesting was that Rec 709 specifies Zone VIII at 109% and Zone I at 5%. The other tidbit, really only of interest to those with large sensor cameras, is the very bottom end of the curve isn't 2.2, it's linear. If you have a camera that lets you and the noise doesn't get you, dialing up Black Gamma could get you a bit more in the shadows.

musicvid10 wrote on 12/27/2012, 3:06 PM
The Art Adams blog is a gem!
Answers a lot of issues for me that I hadn't particularly wanted to tackle on my own.
MattAdamson wrote on 12/27/2012, 3:14 PM
As per musicvids comment I've uploaded a small ( ish ! ) sample clip which is 25 MB in size 4 seconds long in 1920 * 1080 pro tune mode.

musicvid10 wrote on 12/27/2012, 3:18 PM
Thanks, Matt.

Matt, do you have dropbox, mediafire, or google drive? I don't have a Windows ID, and probably don't want one right now.
farss wrote on 12/27/2012, 3:42 PM
Despite getting a Skydrive account I cannot get to it.