Timecode sync

 Here is my situation

We are working on a CG show, animatics (Leica) reels come as one Quicktime movie per episode.

As we made reference from the Quicktime, we cut every single shot in the animatic using Adobe Premiere, and use that as guideline for our layout team.

In shotgun, we create Versions from those individual clips and use it as a base layer in our Layout department.

When they finish, the create playblast starting from frame 1 (our pipeline for shots) and create Versions,

The issue is when we use RV and compare between those version, it seems that metadata in the Quicktime files from animatics use the cut frame, and when we compare those versions, it won't match as the playblast start with 1 and the animatic clips start with their cut point, so they won't stack up properly with OVER Tools and wipe,

How do we make sure that the animatic start with with the first frame instead of their own cut point in the metadata



  • Avatar
    (Michael) Kessler Official comment

    Hi Daniel,


    By default, the start frame is at 1 for any quicktime movie, unless that quicktime contains timecode metadata.


    There are a couple options you have to get your base layer to start at 1; you can either generate your quicktime without the timecode, or set the group.rangeStart property to 1 on the FileSource node.

    Here is an example of how to take the current source and force the frame start to 1.

    Note that the property needs to be created before you set the value.

    from rv import commands

    # Take the first visible source on the current frame and set the start frame to 1.

    s = commands.sourcesAtFrame(commands.frame())[0]

    commands.newProperty("%s.group.rangeStart"%s, commands.IntType, 1)

    commands.setIntProperty("%s.group.rangeStart"%s, [1], True)


    After you create and set that property it will no longer respect the embedded timecode and start from 1.

  • 0
    Daniel Harjanto

    Thanks Michael,

    Errr, how do I get python access from RV ? I'm a newbie in RV.

    RV interface doesn't seem to have a python console.


  • 0
    (Michael) Kessler

    Hi Daniel,

    As of Shotgun 7.0.0, SG Review comes with a RV.  SG Review includes a python console that can be used in RV for interactive python usage.

    If you use SG Review, once you initialize shotgun in the SG Review menu a python console will be under the tools menu.


    That should get you running interactively for prototyping, but a more permanent solution would be to author a python package.

    Check out the package section of the reference document for writing a package.  Note that packages can be written in both Mu and Python; but there are instructions for both.  Check that out here:

    You can also see an example package written in python here:



  • 0
    Cameron Billingham

    Thanks or this info Michael.

    I'm getting a similar issue with quicktimes in my use case. In my case, we are calling rv through the command line script. I'd like to avoid creating a custom rv plugin as we are just using the default rv. Is there any way to set this using a command line. For example, setting a source with an -in and -out and then a flag for forcing the quicktime frame in to start at 1.


  • 0
    (Michael) Kessler

    Yes, in fact there is!  Check out the rangeStart argument (-rs) in the command line help for RV.  It is used within a source bracket on the command line.


    For instance, for a movie that I want to start at frame 1001 I run the following (the weird RV path is because I'm on a Mac for this example)


    /Applications/RV64.app/Contents/MacOS/RV64 [ /demo_content/highres/09_tree_trunk_004_COMP_002/09_tree_trunk_004_COMP_002.mov -rs 1001 ]

    Try that out and make sure you keep spaces around your [ ]



  • 0
    Cameron Billingham

    Awesome!! Thank you! That works perfect

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