Monday, May 31, 2004

Why does everything have to be so hard?

So, lets say you capture video in Movie Maker, in DV-AVI format, so it is lossless when you start editing it. Now, for whatever reason (and there are lots of valid ones, including mine, which will have to wait for a later blog entry) you want to do the actual editing in Adobe Premier.

Easy enough, right? Adobe can read DV-AVI files no problem. Well, it can't read Movie Maker DV-AVIs if they are over a certain size. It will import them, but then after some variable amount of time (in my case between 2-5 minutes) it will just keep showing the same frame over and over, and make a horrible noise for sound. But it obviously can read the files to some extent, because it gets the initial part imported, and it knows how long the file is.

So, I looked all over the internet trying to find some solution. I found people having the same problem on Adobe's forums, and the OH SO HELPFUL advice was "Well, it must be a codec issue". "Or, the file is probably corrupt". Well, obviously whatever codec Movie Maker (and Media Player for that matter) uses works just fine. And there is no other lossless format that you can save to out of Movie Maker, so you don't really have a choice (even if I was able to recapture hours and hours of footage).

I found a program called GSpot which will open an AVI file and check it out. It determines that the header is corrupt, because the length value 1069380612 at offset 0x7ff8 is invalid. Breaking out the trusty hex editor, shows that length value to be the chunk size of the moviidx00 chunk. But it seems like a reasonable value, since the file is around 7G and from what I could find on the internet each chunk has to be less then 1G (and really based on the format could be up to 4G). So I checked out some other files from Movie Maker, and they all have 'invalid' lengths at offset 0x7FF8. Except one smaller file I checked out. So I am not sure if it is a difference in what Movie Maker considers the '1G' boundary, or what.

But the end result is that I can't import the files into Premier. Which means I have to convert the avi to MPEG2+WAV with TMPGENC, and then open them in Premier, edit the audio, and then resave the wav file.

That is so much harder then it needs to be!!

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