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Old January 7th, 2005, 03:22 AM   #1
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Digibeta on a G5?

Hi!

Will I be able to edit Digibeta footage on a dual G5? How much data does one second of footage need (compression 4:2:2), probably a lot more than MiniDV?
Or will I need a full Avid editing outfit?

Thanks!
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Old January 7th, 2005, 09:39 AM   #2
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You can edit digibeta as uncompressed video. You'll need:
Digibeta deck (really expensive), or digibeta footage as data on a hard drive
Capture card if capturing from deck (i.e. Decklink)
Drive array of some sort. The cheapest is throwing (two?/)four SATA drives into your G5 and moving the internal drive into a FW800 enclosure. You'll need a seritek SATA controller card (other SATA controllers are too slow) and you'll need to RAID the drives with OS X. Promax is one vendor which does this, although you could potentially do it yourself at lower cost (without any support other than warranties on your hardware).

2- You could also dub from digibeta to mini-DV/DVCAM/DVCPRO and edit that way. Once you're done you can take your project to an online suite to re-capture the footage at better than mini-DV quality, or you could leave the footage as DV quality (which is arguably really good; will your client be able to tell the difference?). Dub from DV to digibeta if necessary.
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Old January 7th, 2005, 10:09 AM   #3
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Thanks Glenn!

Now I've got to calculate whether I can make enough money hiring out the G5 and my work as opposed to going to an edit suite. I think they will want to stay with Digibeta, since they specified that in the first place. It's ultimately for National Spanish TV and I guess they will find out if it was DV copied back onto a Digibeta tape... haha!
The offline/online option is very interesting. That would cut costs enormously and give much more time to edit in a relaxed way, instead of knowing that the clock is ticking all the time!
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Old January 7th, 2005, 11:29 AM   #4
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In order to store uncompressed DigiBeta footage you need slightly over 27MB for a second. (1.6GB/min, 98GB/Hr) The SDI datarate is 270Mb/sec, SDI is the digital I/O for DigiBeta and similar formats.
SDI input cards are about US$1000 for the Mac. The storage is the more expensive option, depending on your footage.
I'd be intrested to know what the most cost effective option was for you.
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Old January 7th, 2005, 12:10 PM   #5
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That is a whopping lot of data! I used to think mini DV was really much, coming from stills photo in the past.
Regarding the financial side of it: lot depends on whether it will be interesting for me to have this capability on the G5. I'm not normally into shooting Digibeta, so if it looks like it's only going to be this project, I may not invest in the hardware.
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