Frequently Asked Questions



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QWhere are you located?

APost-Op Media is located in Suite 450 at 2000 N 14th St, Arlington VA. We are four blocks from the Courthouse Metro stop on the Orange Line.

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QWhere do I park once I get there?

AYou may park in our building and we can validate your parking. Please bring your parking ticket up with you and Maria can get you a validation stamp. The garage entrance is located on Taft Street – the road to the left as you face our building’s lobby.

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QIs Post-Op open nights and weekends?

AYes, although only by request and availability. Our general hours are from 9AM – 6PM, Monday through Friday. Any time booked beyond that may incur overtime charges, so please call for availability and pricing.

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QWhat type of OMF should I prepare for my audio session?

AWe use OMF type 2 with embedded media, 60 frame handles, 16-bit, 48kHz.

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QWhat type of ISDN services do you utilize?

AWe use both Telos Zephyr and APT in order to be as flexible as possible and avoid costly bridge fees.

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QWhat is your ISDN information?

ASee chart below

Equipment ISDN Phone # Standard Settings Alternate Coding
Telos Zephyr 703-526-0207
703-526-0208
Codec: MPEG Layer 2, Mono, 128kbps MPEG AAC, MPEG AAC-LD
ISDN Data Rate:64kbps, 48kHz MPEG Layer 3 (MP3) G.722
APT X 703-526-0205
703-526-0206
703-526-0207
Dual Destination (mono) ISDN Data Rate: 64kbps, 48kHz

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QWhat formats do you support?

APretty much anything: from DV and SD up to HDV, XDCAM HD, DVCPRO HD, HD-CAM & HD-CAM-SR and fully uncompressed HD.

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QWhat systems do you have?

AFor Audio: We’re using Mac-based ProTools systems. For Video: Work in either our Flame Premium suite or in one five suites with MacPros running FCP7, Premiere Pro, and Avid Media Composer along with Adobe Photoshop, After Effects, and Illustrator. Our AJA Kona and Blackmagic Decklink cards can handle all flavors of SD and HD.

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QWhat graphic files do you work with?

APretty much anything. Final Cut Studio can translate all layers of a photoshop file (although if you have any text effects like a drop shadow, you’ll need to collapse those down into a layer). We also can work with TIFFs, TGAs, and PICTs with alpha channels. Motion graphic files supported are image sequences like TGAs or SGIs, or any flavors of Quicktime like animation or uncompressed D1 all with or without alpha channels. Field ordering is generally lower field first for standard def, and upper field first for high def. Also, keep in mind that we may not have the font that you used, so the font file is always a good idea to include.

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QWhat is Offline vs. Online and why is the price different?

AOffline edit rates are cheaper than online edit rates because the video at the lower offline resolution takes up less space, and CPU resources than the much larger and more processor intensive online resolutions. Offline edits are more for longer format edits where you have a lot more material to start with than the final product, like a documentary. Also, if you are doing the finishing at another facility (Why would you?), then offline editing is a good economical way of getting to your fine cut and picture lock before spending the big money on the expensive finishing suite. But all edits don’t start with offline editing. Imagine that you have a 55 minute program that you want to cut down to a 3 minute highlights video, and your client needs to see a rough cut by COB. Online editing allows you to load in at the final resolution, make your cutdowns, and then master to tape or DVD, eliminating the need for re-capturing and re-rendering.

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QHow long will my project take?

AThat’s a big “it depends”! But there are some things that can speed up the process:

  • Be prepared: we can pre-load all of your material in advance of your actual edit date, so keep that in mind when scheduling your time. Also, pre-screening materials and making good notes is a helpful way of making sure that the pre-load deals only with material that you will need for the edit, and also can help to organize clips in advance of that actual edit date. Also, send any EDLs and graphic files ahead of time, to make sure that they work properly.
  • If you’d like to use a look from an existing piece, bring it with you. That is often a helpful starting point for an editor to get into the project, and to also come up with strategies and workflows that will best fit the end vision.
  • Gather all web materials before the edit. If you are using stock imagery from various websites, it is ideal to have the sample QuickTimes or watermarked images downloaded and burned to a CD or DVD. Or, if you have links to downloadable files for the edit, you can e-mail them for the preload and they will be downloaded and imported into the system prior to the edit date.
  • The more complex and layered a piece is, the more time it takes to create it. One 5-minute piece with a single shot of the talent to camera would take much less time than a 5-minute video with lots of boxes and fast cuts.
  • Offline vs. Online: This ultimately depends on your budget, but if you are offlining at a lower resolution than your final product, you will have to re-capture the final video at the higher resolution, and, if necessary, re-render. This process can add a half day or more to the edit schedule, so make sure that workflow is right for your deadline.
  • DVDs can take longer then real time to create. Depending on whether you’d like to have a menu or play-only DVD, it takes time to encode the assets (video, audio, graphics). If it is 5:30, and you have an hour-long piece that you would like to walk with, then don’t expect to have it done by 6:30. It may take longer, again depending on the complexity of the DVD, to make. Additional copies take much less time, so the real time is spent making that first DVD.

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QAvid, Premiere Pro or Final Cut Pro?

ABoxers or briefs? It all depends on what you need, what you are most comfortable working with, and what fits your budget. We have all 3, and can say that they each have strengths and weaknesses. The sky, and your imagination, is the limit.

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QIs my Final Cut Project compatible with your system at Post-Op?

AWe are currently running the Final Cut Studio version 7. Please call ahead to check for compatibility. You can upgrade an older project to work in a later version, but you cannot go backward (there are ways, but they are not ideal). We can work with FCPX projects if needed, but it is not our preferred platform.

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QHow long can I keep my media, and what gets backed up?

AWe generally keep all media on-line for a month. After that, we will contact you to ask about the status of your project, and if you are done, we will delete all tape sourced media, and backup any graphics and audio files as well as any project files associated with that project. If you need to store the media for longer than a month, you may be subject to a storage surcharge.

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