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Old August 23rd, 2009, 12:14 AM   #1
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CF cards slots interesting observation

Hi all,
Today I have learnt a new thing about the Flash XDR. I hope this can save some unfortunate experiences to others. (a bit too late for me though…)-: )

I am using 4 CF cards in my Flash XDR – 2 Transcend 32 GB and 2 Sandisk Extreme IV 16 GB.
Today I was shooting action in 720 60p I-Frame only at 160Mb/s so decided to place the fast cards (the Sandisk) in slots 1 & 2 assuming the signal will be recorded on them first as the Transcend which were inserted in slots 3&4 can’t handle the 160Mb/s bit rate.

When I got home I could see that the information was recorded to 2 cards so I assumed it were the Sandisk in slots 1&2 as I intended.
I had an unpleasant surprise to find out that the card in slot 1 was full (Sandisk) but the other Sandisk in slot 2 was empty and the card in slot 3 (Transcend) was almost full.
(Checking the display on the Flash XDR I could actually see that cards 1&3 were the recording ones but I didn’t notice this in the field.)

The problem is that the Transcent in slot 3 can not capture the signal in 160Mb/s so I ended up with nothing more than corrupted files.

I wonder what determines the order in which the slots become active – I assumed it is the slot’s number but I was obviously wrong….

Is it the size of the card as I never had this problem when all four cards inserted were 32 GB Transcend cards?

Thanks,
Ofer
Ofer Levy Photography
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Old August 24th, 2009, 11:10 AM   #2
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I also noticed some weirdness in which cards were being recorded too. I just assumed that the XDR would always fill up the cards with free space, in lowest numbered slots first, before writing to empty cards in higher numbered slots.

I don't think this is right though. A better explanation would be nice.
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Old August 24th, 2009, 11:52 AM   #3
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Dear Ofer and Aaron,

I have researched this.

The slots are numbered (As you probably know):

1 3

2 4

and not

1 2

3 4


We are programmed to start with Card Slot 1, then go to 2, 3 and then 4.

If a card slot is empty, or a card is not inserted all of the way, or if a card is full, then we skip to the next slot.

If the power is cycled, we start back with Card Slot 1 again.
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Old August 24th, 2009, 04:16 PM   #4
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Hi Dan,

From my experience as described above, the order of recording slots was 1----3 and not 1----2. All slots had empty formatted cards in them. Slots 1 & 2 had Sandisk Extreme IV 16 GB cards and slots 3&4 had Transcend 32 GB.

When all four cards inserted were Transcent 32 GB the recording order followed the expected 1--2--3--4.

EDIT: did a test with the same cards inserted in the same slots and the recording order followed the expected 1---2---3---4. I just left the Flash XDR recording and didn't perform this check exactly the way it was done in the field where I recorded many short segments.
If only me and Aaron noticed an issue with the recording order then it is possible we somehow got it wrong.
If anyone else had noticed a similar issue - please let us all know.

Cheers,
Ofer

Last edited by Ofer Levy; August 24th, 2009 at 05:17 PM.
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Old August 24th, 2009, 07:08 PM   #5
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Dear Ofer,

We will be on the lookout for any problems of this nature.

Our tests are typically long takes, just like your latest test.

If one of the cards was not formatted, and full from any previous work, it would be skipped.
(But, this, of course, is obvious).
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Old September 6th, 2009, 04:31 AM   #6
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Hi all,

Yesterday I had the same problem with skipping a slot. However, this time I checked carefully and realized the card wasn't fully inserted. So I guess this is probably the solution for this issue - just make sure you insert your cards properly and the green light for each slot is on....(-:

Cheers,
Ofer
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Old September 6th, 2009, 07:58 AM   #7
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Dear Ofer,

Thank you very much for the feedback.

When you reported your experience earlier, we tried hard to get it to fail and we could not.

So this does explain things, and it is great advice to everyone.

Checking for the "Green Light", is easy, and a very prudent thing to do.
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