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Chapter 3. Synchronization and SMPTE Time Code > Current Usages and Practices

Current Usages and Practices

Typically, most AV projects use 29.97 drop-frame time code as a standard. Some commercial post houses will use 29.97 non-drop frame because most of the work done there is not much longer than a minute. Music-only sessions tend to use 30fps, as it has a convenient relationship to real time. Film uses 24fps but is often transferred to video, resulting in 29.97fps. The newer HD cameras may use 29.97fps, 24, or even a special 23.976 rate for direct transfer to regular videotape on location. The choices are many and the confusion runs high.

Knowing what time code you’re using and why you’re using it is imperative when using Pro Tools. Pro Tools has the ability to change time code formats within software, which can be helpful but can also lead to mistakes and more confusion. Once you have established a time code standard for a project, everything else is more straightforward.


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