Working with 24p NTSC Video

Several camcorders have the ability to emulate the telecine process by exposing and shuttering at 23.98 fps and then adding a 2:3:2:3 pull-down when the signal is recorded to tape at 29.97 fps. The result is NTSC-compatible video that looks similar to a film-to-video transfer.

Note: Even though the 2:3:2:3 pull-down pattern of a film-to-tape transfer is emulated by this process, there are many other factors that contribute to a “film look,” such as exposure, resolution, color, depth of field, and so on.

Most camcorders use a pull-down method referred to as advanced pull-down, which has a 2:3:3:2 pattern instead of the traditional telecine 2:3:2:3 pull-down pattern. The advantage of this pattern is that it is more efficient for digital devices or applications (such as Final Cut Pro) to remove and introduce than the traditional 2:3:2:3 pull-down pattern.

In Final Cut Pro, you can remove the redundant fields during or after capture. Once the redundant fields or frames are removed, you can edit at 23.98 fps. When you have finished editing, you can output back to 29.97 fps NTSC video by reintroducing advanced pull-down (2:3:3:2) or traditional 2:3:2:3 pull-down. If you are outputting to film or progressive-scan video, you don’t need to add pull-down.

Note: 1080i60 footage also uses the same 2:3:2:3 and 2:3:3:2 pull-down patterns to record 24p footage.