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Thread: Historian/Film Maker Here: Archival Formats

  1. #1

    Default Historian/Film Maker Here: Archival Formats

    Just joined the forum, but I did perform a search to see if this question has been answered and did not find an answer.

    I enjoy shooting short films with some friends, but once I'm done editing, I'm always at a loss for how to export my film. I got my M.A. in History this year and a lot of my friends are archivists, but the field is still struggling mightily ("change" and "archivists" are sort of like matter and antimatter) and there is as of yet no universally accepted standards of digital formatting. I have determined the most archive-friendly formats for text, documents, photos, and sound files, but videos are my sticking point at the moment.

    What I am looking for is a format that is 1) lossless 2) relatively popular and 3) fairly easy to convert into future lossless formats. Whether this means using a certain codec at 99% or leaving it uncompressed, I do not know at the moment.

    I shoot my footage with a Nikon D7000 (I love 24p) and do my editing in Final Cut Pro 7.0.

    Any help, suggestions, or feedback will be greatly appreciated. Now I'm off to browse the forum some more!

  2. #2
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    Interesting question, but I cant see a good answer, as any present digital format is subject to disappear in a few years. Phisical formats like real film (pelicula) or even tapes will be harder and harder to find or work with.... What is your solution to sound files for example?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheFrenzy View Post
    I shoot my footage with a Nikon D7000 (I love 24p) and do my editing in Final Cut Pro 7.0!
    Quote Originally Posted by TheFrenzy View Post
    What I am looking for is a format that is 1) lossless 2) relatively popular and 3) fairly easy to convert into future lossless formats. !
    Do you intend to archive footage used in editing, i.e. the video recorded by your camera, or do you want to archive the output from video editing? If it's the first option, the most straightforward answer is to keep the footage in the origina format. This is already compressed (and in a lossy format), so further compression would nt benefit your aim of converting to future lossless formats.

    If it's the latter, then h264 is the de facto delivery format for current video.

  4. #4

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    I don't know of any lossless video format which is still popular. Lossless would mean 1920 * 1080 pixel * 8 red * 8 green * 8 blue bit * 25 frames / 8 = 3.09 GByte per second for Full HD!

  5. #5

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    As you are shooting with a Nikon D7000 you are starting with a heavily compressed format already. If it's the same as my Nikon camera it will be in a .mov (quicktime) wrapper with a H.264 format inside.

    I would suggest rendering with exactly the same settings as your original recording for example 1920x1080/24p with around a 25k bit rate. I think you can use Apple Pro Res for best (near lossless) results but I'm not really familiar with the Apple (quicktime) codecs so can't really advise on that side of things.

  6. #6

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    Thanks for the input guys.

    Here's one of the best summaries I've found so far, if anyone is interested: http://www.archives.gov/records-mgmt...s/dav-faq.html

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    Guess I didnt understand well.... I tought the question involved a long time interval! What present format may stay around in 20, 50 or 100 years...

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by TonyBR View Post
    Guess I didnt understand well.... I tought the question involved a long time interval! What present format may stay around in 20, 50 or 100 years...
    That's 50% of the goal. I realize that the likelihood of a particular format being usable 100 years from now is very small, but I'm aiming towards that end with "Goal 1B" being a "lossless" format that can be converted into a future "lossless" format when the time comes.

    Here's another great list of formats that archivists are considering: http://fclaweb.fcla.edu/uploads/recFormats.pdf

    To answer some of the earlier questions, I will be preserving some of the original footage, but my goal is to preserve the final, edited footage in movie form.

    To XXLRay, I had no idea true lossless was so massive! File size is not of much importance to me as I realize that our storage capabilities are expanding exponentially, but 3+ gigs per second is crazy. (Yes, my grandkids will probably laugh at this someday.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by XXLRay View Post
    I don't know of any lossless video format which is still popular. Lossless would mean 1920 * 1080 pixel * 8 red * 8 green * 8 blue bit * 25 frames / 8 = 3.09 GByte per second for Full HD!
    Not quite. That allows for no compression whatsoever. Compression does not have to be lossless. (Unless I'm misunderstanding the point you are making)

    I understand long-term archival is done on film!
    Tim

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    Emulsion/Printed material (film, photos, text) were always the best bet to long-term preservation.....on our days I guess! But what about today, where 99.9% of "film" is not even made on film??? Is there a "hard-copy" of Avatar or Elysium? Cans of film turned into HDs, Photo albuns are megabytes at Photobucket, and text is .pdf files we keep on Ipads!! Seems like the humankind will disappear after a biological virus that attacks real cells or a digital virus that "feeds" on zeros and ones!!

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