So I visit the message boards every day and one of the questions I see most often has to do with using HD footage in an SD project without scaling the footage down and losing quality.  Many people asking this question are coming from other NLE’s that allow the user to keep the HD footage at 1920×1080 inside their 720×486 project and “Pan and Scan” around the footage while keeping the quality high. But one of the downfalls of Avid is that once you bring the HD footage into an SD project it’s automatically scaled down. Thus you can’t zoom in without it looking blurry.

Well, we all know that Avid isn’t going to change this anytime soon, but there is a work around. I came up with this method a few years ago and I have used it with several times. Now, I warn you, it is a workaround and can get a bit tedious, but it will work.

Start an HD project, capture the footage you want to resize at HD, if you are using HDV then transcode to DNxHD.

step 1

Open the shot you want in the source window and mark in/out the part you want.

step 2

Then create a subclip of it by dragging it from the source window to the bin.

Step 3

Then export a QT reference of that subclip to a folder on your media drive.

step 4

step 5

Then switch the project over to 30i.

step 6

Now cut the shot you want into the timeline (this is just for a placeholder).

step 7

Drop a Boris Red (or Avid FX or Boris FX) 1 input effect onto the shot.

step 8

Open the effect editor and open the Boris interface.  In the Boris timeline, click on the V1 icon to change track media to a Movie File.

step 9

Navigate to the QT reference you created and choose it. Hit Enter, then once the QT Reference file is in Boris, casino spiele twirl down it’s track, highlight the “face” track, and then go the Controls window and change the Fields to Upper Fields, and the Aspect to 16:9.

step 10

Now the  QT is much larger than your 864×486 work space and you can now pan and scan it all you want without losing resolution.

step 11

Hit apply to return to the avid timeline and render.

See the split screen below. On the left is the HD QT reference brought in through Boris Red. It is 122% bigger than it was shot. On the right is the same shot scaled down to SD by Avid and then blew back up to 222% with a Picture and Picture effect in the Avid.

step 12

The HD clip brought in through Boris is noticeably sharper and clearer.

Below you can see all three versions of the shot.

First is the original shot as it was shot.

Original framing

Here is the same shot blown up to 222% using the Avid’s Picture in Picture effect.

Blown Up SD

Here’s the shot blown up using the method described above.

Blown Up HD

Hope this helps, if you have any question feel free to post comments below or hit me up on my e-mail.