Adobe Premiere Elements to burn animation to DVD?

A place to discuss non-Moho software for use in animation. Video editors, audio editors, 3D modelers, etc.

Moderators: Fahim, Distinct Sun, Víctor Paredes, erey, Belgarath, slowtiger

Post Reply
guitarzan
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 3:57 pm

Adobe Premiere Elements to burn animation to DVD?

Post by guitarzan » Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:03 am

Hello,
I need to put some animation that I've created onto DVDs, but when I've tried it , I haven't been very happy with the results. It ends up looking pretty blurry and jaggy. I understand that even under the best of conditions, animation on a DVD isn't going to look great, but I'm really hoping I can learn how to make it look the best that it can. I am currently using Adobe Premiere Elements 14 to create the disks. My workflow is: after I create my animation, I compile it in Adobe, add menus and some overlays, and then hit EXPORT & SHARE. I used the "Disc" option with the following settings: Resolution SD 720x480, Frame Rate 29.97, Quality maximized, "Fit Contents to available space" setting turned off, Type of file - Disc.

When the results weren't great, I tried creating custom settings for my export. I tried using different Bitrate Encoding, adjusting the maximum bitrate, rendering at "Maximum Depth" changing the pixel shape, and more. Though I spent time trying to understand the different settings, I felt like I didn't know what I was doing.

So my question is either: 1) does anyone know how to get the best results to burn animation to a DVD using Adobe Premiere Elements? OR
2) If Adobe Premiere Elements is not a good option, could you recommend a program that is? Preferably one that is less that $100 and not terribly complicated.

Thank you SO much.
User avatar
slowtiger
Posts: 5386
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2006 6:53 pm
Location: Berlin, Germany
Contact:

Re: Adobe Premiere Elements to burn animation to DVD?

Post by slowtiger » Wed Jul 31, 2019 7:19 am

I think you're screwed - DVD is not really a great format, especially not for animation. Just play that 720x480 file on your PC: depending on the amount of detail, the result is always less than desirable. It may help to apply an overall blur to the video before exporting (like many anime do with their line art).
AS 9.5 MacPro Quadcore 3GHz 16GB RAM OS 10.6.8 Quicktime 7.6.6
AS 11 MacPro 12core 3GHz 32GB RAM OS 10.11 Quicktime 10.7.3
guitarzan
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 3:57 pm

Re: Adobe Premiere Elements to burn animation to DVD?

Post by guitarzan » Thu Aug 01, 2019 4:12 am

Unfortunately, even though DVD isn't a great format, I need to use it. I'm selling and distributing the animated videos as part of an educational program that I've created.

When I've created the 720x480 file on my computer (in MPEG2 format), it still looks pretty good. It's just that when I burn it to a DVD (also in MPEG2 format), it seems to lose a huge amount of quality. I'm not sure if I can get improvement by tweaking settings within Adobe, or if a different program would give me better results. I've read that some people on the forum have used DVD Architect. Does anyone know if that would be a better program to use?

Thanks.
hayasidist
Posts: 2132
Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:12 pm
Location: Kent, England

Re: Adobe Premiere Elements to burn animation to DVD?

Post by hayasidist » Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:44 am

What format do you use to export from Moho? If you export using a “lossy” codec then put that into any editor and export again using a lossy codec you’ll get a poor result.

If you haven’t done this - try exporting from Moho in 1440 * 960 or higher in png format. Set your PREL project to 720 *480. Bring the png sequence into prel and scale to frame size. Now export. Hopefully that will give you a better result. If not, please say.
User avatar
Greenlaw
Posts: 4411
Joined: Mon Jun 19, 2006 5:45 pm
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: Adobe Premiere Elements to burn animation to DVD?

Post by Greenlaw » Thu Aug 01, 2019 7:31 pm

It sounds like you're compressing the data twice, first from Moho and then again from Premiere Elements when you burn the DVD. You need to use a lossless codec for the animation footage that's compatible with editing program. Lossless is still compressed but the visual quality is preserved so the degradation is minimized. You also want to choose a codec that can play smoothly so you can work with it in editorial. If you do that, the image quality should look as good as what you see in a commercial DVD.

On a Windows computer, I like to use MagicYUV for editing. It's lossless, compact and fast enough for editing full HD. The basic version is free, and the full version is pretty cheap. When I use this codec in an AVI file, it works great in Vegas Pro (however, the same codec in a MOV file performs poorly in Vegas.) FYI, I've used this in After Effects and Vegas Pro but haven't used Premiere Elements, so you should experiment with it yourself.

I'm not sure Moho can use the MagicYUV codec. It might if you're using Moho 13? I'll check when I can manage the time. More typically, I prefer to output a PNG image sequence from Moho and then compile the footage in another program to create the movie file.

In my case, this is because I tend to output my Moho animations in multiple passes using Layer Comps so I can composite the footage in AE or Fusion. From there, I'll output the movie file for editorial use.

But in the past, I've output to PNG frames from Moho and compiled the frames to a lossless movie file using the free VirtualDub program, and then import the movie to my editing program. This is what I did years ago when I created 'Scareplane', mostly because at the time I was working on a very low-powered laptop.

On a Mac, I believe ProRes is still considered the best.

The final target format (what export from Premiere) should be a format that's compatible with your DVD burning or authoring program. If you do that, many DVD programs can avoid re-compressing the video again when it burns the file to the DVD. (It sounds like you're burning the DVD directly from Premiere Elements so maybe this isn't necessary.)

It's been many years since I last burned a DVD (2013 maybe?) Back then I used DVD Architect which worked very well for adding interactive/animated menus like what's seen in commercial DVDs. DVD Architect comes with Vegas when you get the 'Pro' edition. For what DVD Architect does, it's pretty easy to use because it doesn't require scripting knowledge, but it's probably more technical than most people want to deal with.

I imagine there are simple/cheaper DVD authoring programs that work similarly but I'm not sure what's currently popular. Hopefully, somebody here can make a recommendation.

All this said, I agree with SlowTiger. DVD is pretty much on its way out and you might be better off selling the videos on a streaming platform.

Personally, I've been considering Vimeo for this; they have a system in place for 'Pro' subscribers with options for selling downloads or POD streaming. There are also streaming sites that specialize in training videos and collecting fees for you, but I would research the pros and cons of any service before signing up.

I hope this helps a little.
D.R. Greenlaw
Artist/Partner - Little Green Dog | Little Green Dog Channel on Vimeo | Greenlaw's Demo Reel 2019 Edtion
Lead Digital Animator, Dreamworks Animation

Image
guitarzan
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 3:57 pm

Re: Adobe Premiere Elements to burn animation to DVD?

Post by guitarzan » Fri Aug 02, 2019 6:39 am

I appreciate all the feedback so far. I'll try exporting my original animation in PNG and then sequencing it in A.P.E. this weekend, and see how that goes. I've done that before using JPG files, but I don't think I've tried PNG.

As for the using the MagicYUV codec, A.P.E doesn't seem to allow me to make any codec selections when exporting to disc. I basically only have the choice of: PAL or NTSC, the quality, the frame rate and the file type (which is either ISO or Disc0. If I choose "Export to Devices," and then the "advanced" settings, I can access video codecs for some of the formats (such as QuickTime), but not for MPEG2-DVD. If I'm understanding this right, even if I export the files to my computer with a lossless codec, once I try to use A.P.E. to put the files onto a DVD I'm going to have the same issue of not being able to make codec adjustments in A.P.E.

Do other programs allow you to change the codec used when burning to a DVD? If so, I'll probably try switching to one.
User avatar
slowtiger
Posts: 5386
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2006 6:53 pm
Location: Berlin, Germany
Contact:

Re: Adobe Premiere Elements to burn animation to DVD?

Post by slowtiger » Fri Aug 02, 2019 7:43 am

No, DVD is a pretty restricted format, IIRC it only accepts MPEG-2 anyway. No fancy codecs for you.
AS 9.5 MacPro Quadcore 3GHz 16GB RAM OS 10.6.8 Quicktime 7.6.6
AS 11 MacPro 12core 3GHz 32GB RAM OS 10.11 Quicktime 10.7.3
User avatar
Greenlaw
Posts: 4411
Joined: Mon Jun 19, 2006 5:45 pm
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: Adobe Premiere Elements to burn animation to DVD?

Post by Greenlaw » Fri Aug 02, 2019 4:52 pm

guitarzan wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 6:39 am
I appreciate all the feedback so far. I'll try exporting my original animation in PNG and then sequencing it in A.P.E. this weekend, and see how that goes. I've done that before using JPG files, but I don't think I've tried PNG.
JPEG is not lossless and it recompresses poorly. PNG is lossless, however, it doesn't playback smoothly for editorial use. It's better to use PNG as your source data and compile a movie file using a lossless codec intended for video editing. (This is assuming you don't have a lossless codec to export with from Moho--if you have one, you can try that instead. However, even when one is available, I still prefer to output PNG image sequences directly from Moho. There are many good reasons for this workflow as explained elsewhere in these forums.)
As for the using the MagicYUV codec, A.P.E doesn't seem to allow me to make any codec selections when exporting to disc.
SlowTiger already mentioned this but, yeah, you're limited to MPEG2 for a 'traditional' video DVD, so that should be your final output. If there's a preset in Premiere Elements, that's what you should use. (Sorry, I'm not familiar with Elements and I'm making an assumption here.)

If your DVD is just a data disc (as opposed to a video DVD,) you can use almost anything you want, but you should choose a format/codec that's easily playable in computers and DVD players. (Many modern DVD players can also play movie files on data DVDs; no custom menus though, and not all DVD players are compatible with the same codecs but MP4 support should be fairly common.)

Sorry, I don't mean to muddy the waters but there are many options for distributing content these days. Depending on your target audience and production budget, some channels may be more practical than others. Just putting it out there.
If I'm understanding this right, even if I export the files to my computer with a lossless codec, once I try to use A.P.E. to put the files onto a DVD I'm going to have the same issue of not being able to make codec adjustments in A.P.E.
That's correct; using lossess is generally meant for editorial or archival purposes (when uncompressed data is too large to store.) Use this as your master file, then make your DVD, streaming, downloadble, etc., using an appropriate codec/container from this master version.

For a video DVD, when you write your MPEG2 from the lossless data, assuming you have good data to begin with, the exported MPEG2 should be as good as possible. (Well, technically speaking, exporting from uncompressed data should be better but your eye shouldn't detect the difference.)
D.R. Greenlaw
Artist/Partner - Little Green Dog | Little Green Dog Channel on Vimeo | Greenlaw's Demo Reel 2019 Edtion
Lead Digital Animator, Dreamworks Animation

Image
Post Reply