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Video with alphachannel

Michael Scheck

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Hi all! 

A customer is going to provide footage with alphachannel for a project beginning first thing in january. I have worked with QT Animation Codec quite a lot, but the footage that is coming in will be quite large, so a more effective codec would be nice. The client suggested Prores 4:4:4:4. Would that work in Watchout 6? In other post the HAP Alpha is suggested. How do I make a HAP movie, do I need a special encoder? How would the workflow be if I have an animation in After Effects for example, what is necessary to get a HAP as output file? I checked all my Encoder software (all Adobe CS-packages, Telestream Episode) and did not find any "HAP" happening there.....

Kind regards and merry christmas,



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Hi Michael,

I think the hap-codec is very interesting becaus of its low cpu usage. The only way to convert into hap I found on the website of the developer : http://vdmx.vidvox.net/tutorials/using-the-hap-video-codec

I even would like to know about the plans of dataton to implement hap into watchout 6, it seemed to be the only codec with alpha channel and an acceptable compression. 


This codec maybe could be a replacement for mpg2-videos (which has a low cpu usage) and animation codec (which encoded videos are quite huge).

I asked the developers of the movavi converter, which I use to make mpg2 larger than full hd, if hap will be impemented in the near future.

As far as there is answer I will report here.


Best regards


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I´ve got an answer from movavi, hap will not be implemented in the next future.

Also I asked the developers from TmpgEnc and here´s what they answered:


Dear Thomas, thank you for your mail.


Yes, you can choose Hap codec as output format.

At Format stage > AVI file output > the codecs list choose Hap Alpha (HAP5) or HAP Q (HAPY) active the "Enable alpha channel..." option.


If you can't find HAP codec in video codec list, please install the HAP For Direct Show codec http://renderheads.com/product/hap-for-directshow/

and then start the program and try again.


About "mpg2 larger then full hd"

We're sorry, it is not possible. The maximum video size for MPEG-2 is 1920x1088.

By H.264/AVC you can select a resolution of 4096x2304 and by H.265/HEVC up to 8192x4352.


You can test by using first the free Trial version of Video Mastering works 6


English: http://tmpgenc.pegasys-inc.com/en/download/tvmw6.html

Deutsch: http://tmpgenc.pegasys-inc.com/de/download/tvmw6.html#trial


Best regards and a Frohe Weihnachten.

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Hi all, 

in the meantime I tried Prores 444: It worked in 6.02, but did not look very smooth in movement. Seems to overload the system. 

Our customer provided us with HAP-Alpha videos, they work fine and we will do the project with this codec for the transparent videos. 

I installed "Hap.QuickTime.Codec.for.Windows.v8.msi" (see the link from Brana, thanks!) on my machine and then could choose the various HAP-Codecs in After Effects Render Liist and also Adobe Media Encoder CC. Note that you have to choose Quicktime as format and within the settings of Quicktime you can choose the HAP codecs. 

Regards, Michael

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  • 2 weeks later...

Although we support Prores 4444 and Prores 4444XQ, I would not recommend any of these for playback. Both are high bitrate codecs aimed at editing, and are very heavy on the CPU. 

Prores 422 plays a lot better, but are still quite heavy on the cpu, and lack support for alpha. 

Since you need alpha, an alternative could be image sequences, which is supported in WO6 (tiff, bmp, png, jpeg, gif). 

The least CPU-intensive format is Hap-alpha. It is a compressed format, and the quality is not as good as prores, but if you are happy with the results, I would recommend using this format. 



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I'm currently working on a show, where some of the footage was delivered as prores. I can not recommend it. I have converted everything from QT Prores 4444, to HAP and HAPa, when the footage was with alpha channel. It really works well, but it requires a very fast harddisc. Therfore all my production an node machines are equipped with SSD disc for the different show material. 


Best regards Christian

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