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Old August 18th, 2005, 06:51 AM   #1
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Archiving my projects?

Hey all-
I was wondering what I could do to archive my Final Cut Express HD files. I know a lot of you probably don't use FCEHD, so whatever you do for FCP can probably be done in FCE as well. I do weddings from time to time and I also have other videos that I would like to keep, but not keep on my hard drive. I would like to be able to burn the footage to a DVD for archive. What file format should I use? What preferences should I use for the export? Can anyone give me some pointers?
Thanks.
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Old August 18th, 2005, 07:11 AM   #2
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If you are achiving all of your footage, you're not going to be able to fit a whole lot on DVDs. Plus the process of burning and later accessing the files is pretty slow. You might want to look into a hard disk solution. I bought a Wiebetech ComboDock and some CompUSA branded Maxtor drives($80/200 GB) for this purpose and so far it has worked out pretty well.

http://www.wiebetech.com/products/ComboDock.php

They also have some other interesting products such as tray loading hard drive enclosures and such.
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Old August 18th, 2005, 08:24 AM   #3
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Cannon raises some good points. If you want to maintain full quality then you would have to export your video at full quality. I use FCP, but assuming FCE is similar you would open the desired sequence and choose File > Export > Quicktime Movie > Current Settings. That will only give you around 20 minutes on a DVD, and Cannon summarizes the other downside to that. If you burn MPEG2 on the DVD you'll lose a lot of quality and it will be a pain to recompress as DV. Personally I don't think DVD's are viable for anything you might want to edit again later.

I also use hard drives for backup, but just regular firewire 400 externals. I've got six filled with video, and a couple other slower ones for other stuff. But this gets expensive, and I end up erasing them periodically to store work in progress that I don't have time to finish.

So honestly I think the only practical solution at the current time is to copy the stuff back to DV tape, which is cheap. When I have a final edit that I'm happy with and I'm ready to call something "done" I do a "Print to Tape" and record it back to my camera via firewire.
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Old August 18th, 2005, 10:37 PM   #4
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I agree that a video DVD is the next best thing to worthless for archiving a project master. A data DVD with video files is OK but holds very little, especially if you shoot Beta SP which runs about 100 gigs/hr.

What we do is save the FCP Capture Scratch folders and project files to external FW 400 drives. Don't worry about the render folders because the project can be re-rendered if needed. This way we can restore a project and make extensive edits if needed. We also keep a Final Cut movie master of a project for printing to tape or DVD authoring. Actually I also keep an .ac3 and .m2v file of each FCP master for DVD authoring.
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 07:37 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boyd Ostroff

So honestly I think the only practical solution at the current time is to copy the stuff back to DV tape, which is cheap. When I have a final edit that I'm happy with and I'm ready to call something "done" I do a "Print to Tape" and record it back to my camera via firewire.
Boyd, thanks for posting this info. I have been wondering what I should do to keep HD space open on my ibook and this sounds like what I need to do. Have you ever done this then recaptured your project back into Final Cut? Was the quality still there?

Thanks!
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 03:18 PM   #6
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See this thread for more responses on this query.

Data DVD is by far the least expensive (< $0.20/GB) and most durable method for long-time archival of video projects. My preferred method is to RAR up my project into appropriately sized chunks and burn them to two (or more) sets of DVDs so that there's some redundancy to the backup.

Naturally, if any of the DV goes through a re-encode, there is going to be some generation loss with a repeated print-to-tape/restore-from-tape archiving method, but more significantly, this method doesn't allow you to save your editing decisions losslessly. You'll never be able to go back and tweak a video or audio filter just-so once you've deleted your source material and your original project files.
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 03:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennis Parker
Have you ever done this then recaptured your project back into Final Cut? Was the quality still there?
There should be no quality issues because you're staying digital all the way and not recompressing anything (just use the project's native format). Yes, I have recaptured stuff I've archived to DV tape and it was fine.
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 09:23 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boyd Ostroff
There should be no quality issues because you're staying digital all the way and not recompressing anything (just use the project's native format). Yes, I have recaptured stuff I've archived to DV tape and it was fine.

Boyd,

I'm running into a problem trying to print to video to my gl2. I have my gl2 hooked up through my ibook's firewire port. I choose print to video in FCE and for some reason my gl2 just sits there. I push record on my gl2, but the monitor screen is black. I tried turning my gl2 off and back to vcr mode and for several seconds I could see my project on the lcd screen, but it went right to black.

Can you help me figure out what I may be doing wrong?
Thanks!
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 09:32 PM   #9
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Unfortunately people with Canon camcorders seem to have this problem a lot. On an iBook you don't have any options really since there's no PC card slot and only one firewire port.

Is your project on an external or internal drive? Also, Print to Video has lots of "issues." I had to result to tricks just a couple days ago to get it to print without dropping frames on my dual G5/2.5 and a Sony DVD recorder.

Do you have problems capturing with this camera? Or is it just printing to video? Have you recently upgraded to Tiger or QT7? These can also cause problems. If so, then see the following:

http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=301852
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 09:36 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boyd Ostroff
Unfortunately people with Canon camcorders seem to have this problem a lot. On an iBook you don't have any options really since there's no PC card slot and only one firewire port.

Is your project on an external or internal drive? Also, Print to Video has lots of "issues." I had to result to tricks just a couple days ago to get it to print without dropping frames on my dual G5/2.5 and a Sony DVD recorder.

Do you have problems capturing with this camera? Or is it just printing to video? Have you recently upgraded to Tiger or QT7? These can also cause problems. If so, then see the following:

http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=301852
I'm using the internal drive on my ibook. I have no problems at all capturing with my gl2 to this ibook. I'm running OS 10.4.2....
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 09:46 PM   #11
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Robert,

Could you walk me through what I need to do to make a copy of my project to dvd....this is different than exporting it to idvd, right?!?!

Can I make a backup on dvd, then remove all files and folders on my HD, and then reinstall my project through the dvd backup?!

I am using FCE 1.0.1 and ilife 5 if that helps any...

Thanks!
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 09:51 PM   #12
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My guess is that you are always going to have problems with print to video dropping frames if using a slow iBook drive. However, you shouldn't just get a black screen. I don't use FCE, so not sure what might be different from FCP. Check your device control settings for starters, the computer and camera may not be talking to each other.
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 10:01 PM   #13
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I clicked over to capture to see if I could control my camera throuh FCE...that worked fine.

When I click on view>video> do I need to select real-time or firewire? Firewire is currently set....

It's a strange problem I'm having with this print to video command....sometimes if I click my gl2 to off then back to vcr, I can see video from my ibook playing, but it clicks to black after a few seconds.
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 10:58 PM   #14
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Ok!

I went to Ken Stone's site and I found a very easy step by step guide to making copies of my unprotected dvds:

http://www.kenstone.net/fcp_homepage...vd_copies.html

I highly recommend it to anyone like me who had no clue on how to make dvd copies of their films/projects!!!

I checked the quality by putting the new copy dvd into my dvd player and it looked great....

:)
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Old August 22nd, 2005, 11:19 PM   #15
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Dennis: My walkthrough would only be relevant to Windows users since I use WinRAR, but you can get RAR software for any OS. My settings: I use archive format RAR, compression method Best, and set my split to volume size to 666,594,743 bytes. Having selected all the files in my project (and assuming I have at least as much space again on my hard drive), I RAR them all up and then they get RAR-compressed to as many files as necessary. I then burn these files to DVDs using the Data DVD software that came with my burner (Roxio Easy CD Creator--but again, you probably already have your favorite DataDVD burning software for your particular OS).
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