Order of Operations for File Conversions

I don’t even know if this is possible or if I’m the only one who goes through this dilemma.

Here’s the use case:
I used mixed sources for video and many come from my phone. As a default, I usually keep proxy on in my timeline. When it’s time to drag files in, Shotcut immediately tries to convert the files to proxy files. Once it’s all converted, it then sees that it’s from my phone, it then wants to convert it to edit-friendly files. For me it’s an MKV. Once converted, it then wants to convert those MKV to proxy files again, essentially doing the proxy conversion twice.

In order to mitigate this, I have to remember to:

  • Unclick proxy first before I drag the files in
  • Allow it to be converted to edit-friendly
  • Turn the proxy settings on
  • Allow to convert the edit-friendly files to proxy

It would’ve been more convenient in checking the files if edit-friendly went first.

Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.

1 Like

I have never encountered such a problem for the reason that I do not see the point of using encoding into a convenient format and a proxy at the same time. When I use a proxy, I do not need to encode anything into a convenient format, since the proxy already made editing convenient and smooth for me. I almost never encode videos “into a convenient format”, since I don’t really understand why I should do this when there is a proxy.

Proxy will make editing smooth. But when it’s time to export, Shotcut will use the original phone footage which has variable frame rate, and that could easily cause a loss of sync. That’s why the intermediate format is needed, to turn VFR into CFR. And in some cases, to turn HDR into SDR. At this point, the proxy needs to be made from the CFR/SDR intermediate file, not the original VFR/HDR phone footage. So, Ben’s observation is definitely valid. Intermediate files serve two purposes… make editing easier, and also fix any problems in source files (which might even include pre-applying a log-to-BT.709 LUT in professional workflows).