James J. Lee
November 5th, 2008, 02:58 PM
Hey guys, I shot a last minute assignment for a client requiring HD on my Sony V1u in HDV format. The post production house they are using does not have a deck capable of playing back HDV format as they us Panasonic P2 and the Avid/PC system. I used Final Cut Express (Mac) to capture 1080 60i, used Export>Quicktime Movie and handed them the "raw" Quicktime files but their Avid system will not recognize them. I tried taking them my camera to use as a deck and the tapes but they couldn't get Avid to recognize my deck.
The only thing that seems to work is to run the files through Quicktime conversion using H.264 set to "no-compression." These files work and look good but are extremely large, processor intensive and TIME CONSUMING to the point that I doubt my client will be willing to pay. At this point, they're considering having me dub down to SD but that would be a disappointment. Trying to find a way to get these files into the post production's system. Any help???
I know this is over my head but the client brought me in for my creative skills and understand my limitations in editing and post production.
Thanks for any advice.
November 6th, 2008, 10:13 AM
First off, your photographic work is quite beautiful. Keep that up.
As far as my limited knowledge on this goes, if this is a decent post place, they should at very least be able to connect your camera up to some computer and transfer you footage. Maybe they need some sort of plug-in for the V1u, but I just can't imagine this not being possible for any reputable service.
Talk to someone directly at the [post place if you have not already.
Is there another post place you can deal with?
Maybe someone else has advice better than what I know.
James J. Lee
November 6th, 2008, 10:21 AM
The post place is the place my clients regular use for both production AND post. In fact the director/producer normally works side by side with their editor to finish projects. I was just asked to deliver the tapes. When they realized they did not have an HDV compatible deck, they asked me to provide them with Quicktime files on a hard drive. But, they can't read the QT files because of my AIC codec. So, I hand them my camera to use as a deck and they say that Avid does not recognize it. Right now, I'm at a bit of a loss for what to do. This was the first shoot on what could be a good long term project that I hate to lose but it seems my HDV footage and their lack of knowledge outside of their own system has become a true bottleneck.
Can anyone think of a way for me to get this in a format that Avid/Pc can recognize? We're talking about 45min. of footage here. Thanks, JLee
November 6th, 2008, 11:26 AM
Okay, deep breath. Here are a couple of suggestions:
If you want to try to convert your captured files again, try downloading the Avid codecs at the bottom of this page:
Then you can export quicktimes from Final Cut using the Avid codecs. Your post house should be able to import them. I've only done this in Windows programs, so you'll have to figure out how to do that yourself.
If you want to try to capture again with them, it can be problematic to get Avid to recognize the camera if you don't set it up properly first.
I use the Z1, so my tips might not be exactly the same, but ithey should apply.
First, go into the camera menu and make sure the VCR is set to HDV, and that the downconvert function is OFF. Play the HDV tape briefly to make sure it's in HDV playback mode.
Turn off the computer. Connect the camera with firewire. Make sure the camera is on, and in HDV VCR mode. Turn on the computer. Start AVID. Make a new HDV 1080i project. Open the capture tool, and click Auto Configure. Avid should detect the camera. IF it does, you're good to go.
Your other possibility is to find someone else you know who has an Avid and is used to working with HDV. They could capture the footage for you and you could bring a hard drive to your post house.
You could always ship me a copy of your tape and a hard drive, and I'll capture it for you :-)
James J. Lee
November 6th, 2008, 11:49 AM
Wow, thanks Vito. That's a tremendous offer and one that I may need to take you up on. I'm afraid I don't have much access to the post production house's system to work with their Avid set-up to recognize my deck and it doesn't seem they have much interests in helping me do so. I guess they may see me as a competitor which is unfortunate.
I would love to find a Codec I can use in Final Cut Express that would be compatible. I'll see what I can do with those Avid plug-ins you sent. Since this project will span months and many tapes, I'm going to do as you suggested and try to find someone with Avid that can capture. Just wondered if I was missing something obvious or if there was a way I could get this footage into an Avid Compatible codec with some software bridge.
Thanks again for your help, I may be in touch soon.
November 6th, 2008, 12:38 PM
No worries. Let us know how it goes.