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Old August 25th, 2011, 09:43 PM   #1
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Getting files out of their Sony Camera and into my edit suite FAST

I've been working on an industrial with a company I hired that uses a Sony camera (don't know the model) that saves to a little plug-in chip about the size of half a book of matches. I've got six days to edit three hours of footage that we shot on Tuesday, but the company that owns / operates the camera has to render the footage in FCP in order to let me work on it - and it has crashed three times trying to output a file.
I have an older dual-core 1.86 Ghz processor with 2Gb of RAM, and about 600 Gb of storage. I can't even do a paper edit unless I can see the video and hear the audio.
So - is there any way that the editor can give me a low-res copy of the huge single file fast?
And, look, if I said something stupid here, it's only because I don't know a heck of a lot about this. I hired a company that I really liked after researching them, talking to former customers, watching them work, having coffee with them, and touring their facility. I like these guys and want to work with them further. But I can't have this kind of delay between shooting and editing.
Please. Something I can do to help them get me my footage!
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Old August 25th, 2011, 11:01 PM   #2
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Re: Getting files out of their Sony Camera and into my edit suite FAST

Roy, no matter what NLE you use, your computer will have a hard time swallowing (no pun intended) any form of HD unless they down rez it to an SD type file. XDCAM doesn't need as much horsepower as AVCHD but it needs more than what you've got.
What are they rendering to? It sounds like their computer also doesn't have the guts to handle XDCAM or AVCHD. Tell them to render to SD widescreen and you should be alright.
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Old August 27th, 2011, 08:15 AM   #3
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Re: Getting files out of their Sony Camera and into my edit suite FAST

Don...
Exactly the issue. I have to write the script for the industrial from the footage, and all I need is an SD copy. But it's taken three days to finally get it rendered. They're using an Apple with many, many bells and whistles. My lowly PC can't hope to hold a candle to it, except that it doesn't have to.
I was told that they couldn't render an SD copy of the HD footage. I figured that getting a SD version of a Sony HD something file wouldn't be a task. I asked for a low-res copy, something I could scan and transcribe... I am not doing one frame of actual editing... on Tuesday. Got it yesterday after-hours.
On reflection, I shouldn't have put "edit suite" in the header.
I was/am a little tense, since the project has to go to the client on Tuesday... fortunately, just a rough cut, but still, that ain't a lot of time.
Anyway... thanks, Don...
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Old August 27th, 2011, 08:32 AM   #4
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Re: Getting files out of their Sony Camera and into my edit suite FAST

What they are saying doesn't add up from a technical point of view. Maybe contractually they can't generate SD footage but technically, that's just not true. From your description of the storage chips, it sounds like they are using the NX5 or possibly one of the Sony solid state HDV cameras. Either way, the clips from the camera could have been run through the Apple Compressor application which would have chunked out each clip one at a time in any number of formats including standard NTSC DV format.
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Old August 27th, 2011, 10:49 AM   #5
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Re: Getting files out of their Sony Camera and into my edit suite FAST

Ah got it. Sorry, I misunderstood. I agree with Les. If it's taking 3 days to render to SD then they got it wrong. Their computer isn't up to the task either or they have one very convaluted workflow.
anyway at least you've got something to work with.
Good luck.
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Old August 27th, 2011, 01:38 PM   #6
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Re: Getting files out of their Sony Camera and into my edit suite FAST

Geez - Sony PMB software, that comes with their "consumer" cams will "render" an SD file in a couple minutes from the original HD... this isn't rocket science.
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Old August 28th, 2011, 08:09 AM   #7
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Re: Getting files out of their Sony Camera and into my edit suite FAST

Yeah, it sounded strange to me, not being able to output something fast and simple. I had hoped the turnaround would be a couple hours. But, hey, what do I know? I'm a writer with aspirations. I've bought my share of bridges and Florida real estate in the last few years...
On the plus side, I just bought a battery pack for my GY500. 6 pounds of SLR battery, with chargers - wall and auto - and all for $130. Recharge up to 300 times, over night, and it gives me 6 hours recording run time with the camera.
I've got the last bit (paid for by this gig) of my kit. Can Xlo bud production be far behind?
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Old September 1st, 2011, 01:54 AM   #8
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Re: Getting files out of their Sony Camera and into my edit suite FAST

3hrs footage?

If your computers horsepower isnt enough, simply play out the 3hrs from camera downconverted to SD and ingest THAT again (with timecode).
Most Sony HD cameras can downconvert the footage in realtime.

Best regards

Uli
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