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Old September 28th, 2009, 08:24 AM   #1
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HDLink Drops Frames on Conversion

Has anyone else had issues with HDLink "dropping frames" when converting from M2T to CFHD?

Whenever I load up 3 or 4 files, 45 minutes to an hour each, and run the conversion, going from HDV M2T 1080 to 1920x1080, HDLink always drops frames in all but one of the files. It seems the first file converts correctly, and the rest have a dropped frame (or two right together). I can repeat the conversion, leaving the one good file out of the batch, and get one more file converted correctly.

I have similar issues when batching up M2Ts and doing a simple HDV->CFHD 1440x1080; I just see the issues quicker...

My machine is an i7 920 (quad core), with 12GB RAM. The source drive is SATA, and the destination drive is eSATA RAID0. Windows 7 64bit. There is nothing else running on this machine--it's a dedicated video workstation. No MS Office agents, no weird services; right now, it's a fresh install of Windows 7 (had to reformat and reinstall everything).

I have the horsepower; I have the disk throughput, and I have the airflow through the case. Why does HDLink consistently botch conversions on groups of files? It's a real productivity killer--I'd be finished with my current project if it weren't for this. :(


Edit: I currently have PHD 4.0.9 219b, if it matters, but I've seen this problem ever since the later AspectHD releases on XP.

Last edited by Matt Vanecek; September 28th, 2009 at 08:25 AM. Reason: Added CFHD version
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Old September 28th, 2009, 10:34 AM   #2
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Never seen that. Look at you system to see was drives/devices could be causing packet errors (data corruption.)
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Old September 28th, 2009, 03:31 PM   #3
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I'm not sure what you mean. how would I know what drives/devices could cause packet errors? I've had this problem across two different machines. As I said before, the source drive where the M2Ts are is SATA, 3Gbps, and the destination drive is eSATA RAID0, although I've also tried using another SATA drive as the destination. It's not like I'm capturing from tape or any other real time system--it's a file conversion. There's really nothing else running on the computer--I've stopped all the non-MS services I recognized that I know aren't needed for the basics, there's no virus scanner, the performance settings are set for best performance, my disk setup is setup specifically for video editing. Etc. If you can point me to a throughput tester, I'd be happy to try that and post results, but based on what I see from other programs, the system and drives are just fine.

Copying from drive to drive works just fine, using MD5 checksums to verify. Using MPEG_Streamclip to convert works just fine, no drop-outs. Only using HDLink gives the drop-outs. The problem is, the MPEG_Streamclip timecode doesn't match up to the original M2T timecode like HDLink does.

I've attached a frame capture from Premiere Pro, from one of the files. The dropped frames are different from conversion to conversion--just gotta compare to the original M2T until you find it.

I'll keep trying the conversion. Eventually it will come through, but this problem costs me hours and hours of time.
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HDLink Drops Frames on Conversion-firsthalf_24817.jpg  
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Old September 28th, 2009, 11:23 PM   #4
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You don't say what your camcorder is or what tape you used with it. I had horrible problems with dropouts that changed every time I read the tape, when I used TDK tape in my Sony camcorder. I've used only Sony HDV tapes since, and have had no problems.
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Old September 29th, 2009, 08:33 AM   #5
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I don't use tape. Cameras are V1 and FX1, using an MRC1K and a Firestore FS-4. Tape never enters the equation. This is strictly a file conversion, that other software can do, but that I have to repeat several times with HDLink before it gets it right.

For the record, the dropped frames also happen when converting just one file, and in different spots in the video. I know that the source video file is solid, and I know my system is solid. HDLink just likes to drop frames on long videos for some reason, which makes it quite a pain to try and synch up audio from external audio recorders, when synching shows and long-running events. MPEG_Streamclip converts without error the first time, but MPEG_Streamclip drops all the metadata and does not match the original video's timecode & frame count, which HDLink does. If you can convert a few times until there are no dropped frames in the conversion, anyhow...

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Old September 30th, 2009, 06:51 PM   #6
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Yay, I finally got the last file to convert correctly! Just have to run it through HDLink umpteen-million times.

I'm really curious if anybody else has noticed these things? You might not notice it, or have a problem, unless you're converting really large files (over 30 minutes). I notice them because I synch externally recorded audio to the clip before getting into the cutting room. It's very evident in Audition when editing the sound, or if you layer the M2T and CFHD AVIs on top of each other in a timeline.

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Old October 1st, 2009, 12:58 PM   #7
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i know this problem. I just substitute a lot of clips in a project in premiere from m2t to avi and the sync doesn't match...
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