Editing high quality intermediate files (10 bit Prores or Canopus HQX)


I’m just starting to learn Shotcut, and would like to make sure I understand its limitations ahead of time.

I have digitized some Super 8 films, and they are encoded with the Grass Valley/Canopus HQX, 10 bit 4:2:2 codec. I’m applying quite a few filters (including some outside of Shotcut), and would like to maintain the highest possible quality along the way. I know that Shotcut cannot encode using the Canopus HQX codec, so I will probably use Prores or DNxHD.

I read in an old post on this forum, though, that Shotcut is limited to 8 bit only, so there would be no point in using 10 bit codecs. But I did not find any definitive answer elsewhere

Is Shotcut really limited to 8 bit, or is there a way to work in 10 bit space?

Thanks in advance


Yes, it’s only 8 bit. Dan explains why in this interview here.


Yes, Shotcut’s CPU filters are 8-bit only, but most filters operate in full range RGB. The GPU filters and track compositing operate in 16-bit float per color component; however, it must be eventually rendered to some 8-bit image format before encoding. You can encode in 10-bit by adding in the Export Other tab:


(assuming the code you choose supports that pix_fmt). It is not ideal, but telling you how to get best results using Shotcut.


Somehow I had missed your answers until now. Thanks so much for the detailed answer and the link to the interview!

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