I filmed an event with 2 separate cameras (one mine, one borrowed). The footage from my camera captures fine at 16:9 but the other one seems to be interpreted as 4:3 in the capture window so the footage appears letterboxed. Is there a way of forcing Premiere to capture something in 16:9 format?
you can set your comp file and the captured avi file to 16:9 widescreen if you want. (under preferences, or right click on video i believe). but i don’t think you want to convert your 4:3 captured video to 16:9, because the whole image and people/stuff will be stretched out unnatural.
and to convert 16:9 to 4:3 is the same problem.
Firewire capture just takes what’s on the tape into the computer, unaltered. You can tell your edit software to treat it as something else (“interpret”), but that doesn’t change what you have.
Some domestic camcorders offer a simulated widescreen mode, capturing 4×3 footage with letterbox black bars applied … which sounds like it could be the situation you are in.
If that is the case, there’s no really good way out.
Dropping the quality of your better source by rendering it out as 4×3, scaled down to match the other footage, black bars and all, would keep all the footage consistent – but at the price of being 4×3 with bars.
Scaling up your 4×3+bars footage and rendering it into widescreen keeps the quality of the better stuff, but will probably make the worse stuff look even worse by comparison.
I agree with the other responses, the camera is probably the culprit. It may simply shoot 16:9 by shooting 4:3 and letterboxing internally OR it could be a menu setting for the camcorder to play out 16:9, such as the Sony Z1 which can play 16:9 footage as 4:3 letterbox if that option is selected.
If the other camera doesn’t have a menu playout choice to get real 16:9, I might consider editing the entire project as 4:3 letterboxed to get it all to simply match.