What about a drive in a FW enclosure? at DVinfo.net

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Old October 12th, 2004, 10:44 AM   #1
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What about a drive in a FW enclosure?

In my case, I don't mind being tethered via cables to a box set on a table next to a tripod....

So rather than speing huge amounts of money on a portable FireStore-like system, and I just run the FW port out of a PD150 direct to a drive in a FW enclosure?

If not, why can't I do that? Fw should operate w/o a PC (unlike USB), and I would guss that I could just store the raw FW data stream out to the drive.

If there needs to be some sort of "capturing" firmware to correctly format the video data, couldn't I just store the raw data to the drive, then take it home and hook it up to my PC and use something like Premiere or Vegas to grab the video and "format it" however it needs to be done?

Advantages? Disadvantages?

Would I be better off building a small Mini-ITX based system in a small custom enclosure and putting WinXP & Premier or Vegas or something like that on there and capture that way (like you would do with a laptop)?

Trying to understand the technologies behind this...

Thanks,

Alex F
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Old October 12th, 2004, 11:10 AM   #2
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Quote:
Fw should operate w/o a PC
Sorry FW doesn't work that way. You need a computer.
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Old October 12th, 2004, 11:33 AM   #3
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And the computer would take the raw data, and convert it to the proper file system on the drive?
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Old October 12th, 2004, 11:58 AM   #4
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I too was thinking about getting a really small computer for that, like a shuttle, but then you'd still need a monitor and keyboard - unless you could somehow automate the capturing software to load right after booting up...but without a monitor how would you be sure that the files have been saved, and without a keyboard how would you shut down properly so that the application closes without loss of data etc. Basically you're lugging around a desktop system with you.

At this point you're better off with a laptop, and usb/firewire external drive as needed. See the other thread about dvrack and frankenstore.

I have a 60gb creative nomad zen and a 30gb mindstore digital wallet, these 2 devices are basically enclosures for laptop hard drives with a simple OS built in them and basic software that allow them to do a few I/O operations - I think the brains of the thing reside on chips on not on the hd itself. If only I knew how to hack them in order to have them work with the XL2.

As someone else suggested, tapeless is only going to get more popular and the big boys (creative etc.) will move iin with their own digital wallet eventually. Archos in the news recently:

http://www.infosyncworld.com/news/n/5126.html
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Old October 12th, 2004, 01:08 PM   #5
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Well then, I need to get something like a MINI ITX system.

The Travela C134 case & EPIA M10000 MB combo runs between $250-$350.

Add a HDD (laptop drive) and you basically have a full fledged 1Ghz PC that is about the size of a firewire enclosure. Add a roll up keyboard for $20, and use a spare PC monitor or a TV (it has TVouts so you can use them in a pinch).

Not necessarily ideal, but it costs about 1/6 the price of the firestore-like systems, and that is with a MUCH bigger HD, and you can use something like DVRack oor other software waveform monitors, etc.

Alex F
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Old October 12th, 2004, 03:43 PM   #6
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Actually if the PD150 is "aware" then you can do it w/o a PC, direct into a FW storage. The question is do the PD150s have that functionality built in? Can't you connect 2 PD150s together via Firewire? If so, I believe the main use is for remote control of one via the other, but that does not necessarily mean that the firmware for that does not include the ability to record to a drive.

I'll have to do some digging...

Alex F
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Old October 13th, 2004, 08:55 AM   #7
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The next wave of camcorders may handle fw drives like plug'n'play devices - hd docking would be built into the unit, replacing the tape drive altogether, and it would enable hotswapping of hd's.

You open the door, but instead of popping in a tape you pop in a 500 gb hard drive. Ok, maybe that's 2 or 3 generations into the future, but even if tape does survive, it shouldn't be too hard to put in chips to enable recording to a bare bones hard drive (capacity and brand of your choosing).
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Old November 12th, 2004, 05:16 PM   #8
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A company that I work with spent more money on Sony tapes in the last few years that they paid for two PD150 cameras. I doubt that the manufacturers are so keen to implement this technology in the near future.
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Old November 17th, 2004, 01:55 PM   #9
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I have built a mini-pc system to use.

I bought them (several of them) used on eBay for an insanely cheap price. I got a small mouse/trackball for it ($20), and small keyboard (no num pad) ($15), and will be getting a small (7") LCD VGA monitor for it as well ($200-250 for it).

In the meantime I am using an old 15" CRT monitor.

Here is where I am at right now...

When loading up premiere pro I hook up the camera and get great video preview. about a 1 second delay, but everything is very smooth. As soon as I hit the record button to record to disk, I start dropping frames like crazy!

Currently the PC has the following (I just got it, so I plan on upgrading a lot on it very soon):

Celeron 1.7GHz processor (can upgrade up to a P4 3GHz CPU w/ HyperThreading)

1 80 Gig HDD (haven't looked, but I assume that it is 7200 rpm - I don't remember ever seeing a 5400 rpm 80 gig drive, but I don't know how old it is).

512Mb RAM (PC2100)

The video card is integrated into the MB.

So, there is a big bottle neck somewhere. My first inclination is to think that it is the HDD since the OS is on the same drive. I am planning on getting a 20-40 laptop drive as my main OS drive, and getting a 200+Gig drive (7200 rpm) as the "storage" drive.

The MB takes SATA and up to ATA100. I have not checked to see if the drive is ATA33, 66 or 100, nor have I checked in the BIOS to verify that it is setup properly.

If that is not it, maybe it is the CPU. Since it previews just fine and very smooth, I was thinking that it is less likely to be the CPU, but since the CPU now has to direct the stream to the HDD as well as preview, it *could* be the CPU.

Any suggestions or anything to help me track down the bottle neck?

Eventually I want to upgrade the drives as mentioned, but I also want to upgrade the CPU as well. I think that the drives might come first, however.

Once I get the whole thing up and working, I'll put to gether some pics and descriptionsof the whole system.

It's pretty cool, and considering that I got it so cheap off of ebay, I have invested less than $100 in this thing so far. Another couple hundred is no biggie, and is FAR cheaper than a comparable laptop!

THanks,

Alex F
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Old December 31st, 2004, 12:29 PM   #10
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wouldn't something like this be great?

http://www.delkin.com/delkin_products_usb_bridge.html
http://www.macally.com/new/new_syncbox.html

a firewire bridge? technically possible?
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Old January 3rd, 2005, 03:33 AM   #11
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A simple bridge will never work. You need a device that understands
camera's and the (H)DV signal coming from them. It also needs
to be able to control a (firewire) drive (and such a device MUST
work with the filesystem on such a drive ITSELF!). Therefor you
need a little device (quite complex actually) to go inbetween.

This is why there is a special market for Direct-to-Disk devices,
this is what they do. These are the "bridge" devices that allow
you to do such things.

Only other option is to go with a computer/laptop and use
something like DV Rack.
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