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Old August 8th, 2007, 09:33 AM   #1
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HD to FCP workflow question

Hi everyone!

I'm preparing a post house for our first HD editing job, and I'm trying to get all my informational ducks in a row before plunging in. Right now, though, I'm a little confused by some workflow issues, and was hoping someone here could clarify.

We have one Quad-core G5, soon to have a Kona 3 card, a RAID and a JVC BR-HD50U deck, which will be our main capture station. Then we have a number of dual-core G5s which will be our other editors' stations.

Our desired workflow is: We shoot on a JVC HD camera. We capture on the Kona-equipped G5, capturing everything in the DVCPro codec (since the dual-core G5s won't be able to work in ProRes), then drop the media onto Firewire drives and hand it off to the other editors. They put together the product, mixing HD footage, SD footage, and stills. Then we take the Final Cut files and our tapes to an online house, who'll recapture everything uncompressed, color correct, and put the whole thing into the format requested by the network.

Here's where my questions come in: I've been told that the only way to bring the HD footage into the computer is via component analog (BNC) to a Kona I/O box, which won't carry timecode. No timecode means no ability to recapture, which throws a big monkey wrench into our plans.

The solution seems to be using the RS422 protocol over a serial interface, which will both carry timecode and allow device control. Is that correct? Or am I misunderstanding massively?

Thank you all in advance for your help!
Daniel Kleinfeld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 10th, 2007, 07:02 PM   #2
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Hi Daniel, we have a similar set up. We have 4 edit rooms: two with dual core Mac Pros and two with G5s. All have either Kona LH or Blackmagic Multibridge Studios.

We capture everything we shoot on the HD250's via Firewire and HDV from BRHD50's. This is 1:1 HDV to HDV with no loss from the tape. As long as you're not doing lots of effects and processing of the image, this is the way to go. Of course, that is assuming you are using a HDV mode FCPro2 supports like 720p30 or 720p24. We were using analog capture back when FCPro would not support 720p24. But there was no real benefit and there was some softness in image quality converting to analog in the BRHD50 - some loss. I would question the D/A in the BRHD50...probably not up to stringent broadcast house standards. But not bad. The same process can be achieved by media managing the HDV clips and transcoding them to DVCPro HD or Pro Res or Uncompressed all done in software.

That said, you can capture via component analog to any of the formats like DVCPro HD with serial control and TC if you have a fast RAID - Even uncompressed 10 bit with a massive RAID. But the cost of storage may negate any benifit. We had mediocre success with batch recapture via the BRHD50. The transport on this deck is more like a camera than a Beta deck. Getting it to pre-roll and capture from serial control was a trial of patience.

We produce tons of medical network news feeds that include green screen on camera segments. All done in HDV and it looks great when nested in a SD timeline. At least digi beta quality.


Dave Beaty
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Old August 13th, 2007, 12:58 PM   #3
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Hunh! I had been told that I wouldn't be able to just capture via Firewire---glad to hear that's not true. As we have some older SD material that'll need to be in the HD timeline, that'll need to go through the convertor, correct? Or is there an easier way to convert that to HD?

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