Types of Apple ProRes Codecs

Monica Pavtube

Aug 12, 2014 12:45 am / Posted by Monica Pavtube

Apple ProRes is an intermediate codec able to maintain higher quality than end-user codecs and still require much less expensive disk systems compared with uncompressed video and uncompressed videos require much more storage space and higher bandwidth.

apple prores codec types

If you’re a movie director, or need to edit a lot of video sources (from discs, cameras, network, etc) with Final Cut Pro, you’d better know types of Apple ProRes Codecs and what their features are.

Types of Apple ProRes codecs are listed below:

Apple ProRes 4444 XQ

The highest-quality version of Apple ProRes for 4:4:4:4 image sources (including alpha channels). This format has a very high data rate to preserve the detail in high-dynamic-range imagery generated by today’s highest-quality digital image sensors. Apple ProRes 4444 XQ preserves dynamic ranges several times greater than the dynamic range of Rec. 709 imagery. This holds true even against the rigors of extreme visual effects processing in which tone-scale blacks or highlights are stretched significantly. Like standard Apple ProRes 4444, this codec supports up to 12 bits per image channel and up to 16 bits for the alpha channel. Apple ProRes 4444 XQ features a target data rate of approximately 500 Mbps for 4:4:4 sources at 1920×1080 and 29.97 fps.

Apple ProRes 4444

The Apple ProRes 4444 codec offers the utmost possible quality for 4:4:4 sources and for workflows involving alpha channels. It includes the following features:
Full-resolution, mastering-quality 4:4:4:4 RGBA color (an online-quality codec for editing and finishing 4:4:4 material, such as that originating from Sony HDCAM SR or digital cinema cameras such as RED ONE, Thomson Viper FilmStream, and Panavision Genesis cameras). The R, G, and B channels are lightly compressed, with an emphasis on being perceptually indistinguishable from the original material.
Lossless alpha channel with real-time playback
High-quality solution for storing and exchanging motion graphics and composites
For 4:4:4 sources, a data rate that is roughly 50 percent higher than the data rate of Apple ProRes 422 (HQ)
Direct encoding of, and decoding to, RGB pixel formats
Support for any resolution, including SD, HD, 2K, 4K, and other resolutions
A Gamma Correction setting in the codec’s advanced compression settings pane, which allows you to disable the 1.8 to 2.2 gamma adjustment that can occur if RGB material at 2.2 gamma is misinterpreted as 1.8. This setting is also available with the Apple ProRes 422 codec.

Apple ProRes 422 (HQ)

The Apple ProRes 422 (HQ) codec offers the utmost possible quality for 4:2:2 or 4:2:0 sources (without an alpha channel) and provides the following:
Target data rate of approximately 220 Mbps (1920 x 1080 at 60i)
Higher quality than Apple ProRes 422

Apple ProRes 422

The Apple ProRes 422 codec provides the following:

Target data rate of approximately 145 Mbps (1920 x 1080 at 60i)
Higher quality than Apple ProRes 422 (LT)

Apple ProRes 422 (LT)

The Apple ProRes 422 (LT) codec provides the following:
Roughly 70 percent of the data rate of Apple ProRes 422 (thus, smaller file sizes than Apple ProRes 422)
Higher quality than Apple ProRes 422 (Proxy)

Apple ProRes 422 (Proxy)

The Apple ProRes 422 (Proxy) codec is intended for use in offline workflows and provides the following:
Roughly 30 percent of the data rate of Apple ProRes 422
High-quality offline editing at the original frame size, frame rate, and aspect ratio
High-quality edit proxy for Final Cut Server

Tips:

1. What ProRes Converter for Mac can do?

Videos (MXF, AVCHD, MOV, MTS, M2TS, M2T, TS, Tivo, AVI, MKV, WMV, DVR-MS, MP4, FLV, F4V, M4V, MOD, TOD, DV, EVO, RMVB, etc.), Blu-ray/DVD sources or other video sources can be easily imported to an editing program like FCP. The Apple ProRes Converter for Mac can transcode your videos to FCP fully supported video format “Apple ProRes MOV.”

2. More functions of ProRes Converter for Mac

In addition to converting various video files to Apple ProRes, this ProRes converter can also realize SD/HD video playback on different devices like the latest Samsung Galaxy Tab S, Surface Pro 3, Amazon Fire Phone, etc. It is also a video editor to edit your video sources by trimming, cropping, adding watermarks/subtitles/special effects, ect. If you are using other professional editing programs like Avid, iMovie, FCE, Premiere Pro, etc, this ProRes Converter for Mac can also output corresponding formats for free editing.

3. Make it easy to edit MXF recordings

If you process and edit MXF recordings a lot, Pavtube iMixMXF can be of great help for you. Apart from outputting common video formats, it can also preserve MXF multi-track audios and output multi-track MKV/MP4/MOV.

Kindly note for FCP users:

When using FCP X to edit videos, please make sure that ProApps QuickTime Codecs has been installed in advance; otherwise you may get files with sound only and without video.


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