About Burned-in Timecode on Video
Most telecine facilities offer the ability to permanently superimpose, or burn in, edge
code and timecode numbers over your video transfer from film. This is useful whether
or not you have a telecine log file:
Â If you have a telecine log file: The burned-in numbers make it easy to verify that the
entries in the database are correct. Additionally, in cases where the video has had a
3:2 pull-down applied, letters are added after the key number to indicate the frame
type. This helps when configuring the reverse telecine process, which removes the
added frames and restores the video to its original film frame rate.
Â If you don’t have a telecine log file: The burned-in numbers make it much easier to
manually enter the records in the Cinema Tools database.
If you do not have burned-in numbers, you generally have to use a list that matches up
with hole-punched film frames at the head of each clip.
A consideration regarding using video with burned-in numbers is whether the final
edited video will be shown to others. If not, having the burned-in numbers is very
helpful and they should be included. If it is going to be shown, you may want to have
the telecine facility use a 2.40:1 aspect ratio, which leaves sufficient blank space to
place the numbers without covering up any video. Alternatively, if the edited output is
to be used as a clean master, you can choose to have the burned-in numbers appear
only on the first frame of each clip.