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Old February 26th, 2013, 11:45 AM   #1
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Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Though I now have my PMW 500, I've not had to edit anything myself as yet.

My current laptop has an older version of Avid which I use regularly for editing with SD material.

At some point I'll have to update my kit.

What I'd like to know is what is the workflow like for editing with SxS cards at 50mbps and SDHC cards at 35mbps (more likely to edit with SDHC at this stage).

I'm thinking Mac Book Pro but the latest versions seem to have less and less ports these days. So, am I right in thinking that the latest retina laptop does have a SDHC card reader into which the memory card can be slotted without an attachment and if I had to use as SxS card I'd need a reader attached to the Thunderbolt port?

I understand Sony has an XDCam EX driver that has to be downloaded first before starting any editing.

After this I'm less sure of what happens. Any clues would be useful!

I see Avid offer a 30 day trial of the latest Media Composer 6, but it's expensive. May be cheaper if I can upgrade my old Avid software, but it is Xpress Pro, so not sure if that's an option.

Alternatively there's Final Cut X, but I have no experience of this or Final Cut Pro 7 either. Plus, I'm concerned with X that the video and audio is all on one channel/timeline whereas I'm used to working with Video on one channel, Interviews on another, Natural Sot on another and any Voiceover on yet another in Avid. I hear you can detach audio in X but have no idea how this works, etc.

So, as you can see I have a 2 part question (sort of) as to workflow and then software.

Also, if you're using a MB Pro and want to export the finished edit, what's best to use? I read somewhere that DvDs can cause big problems with quality, etc. Just thinking what's best to give a client when a project is finished.
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Old February 26th, 2013, 07:41 PM   #2
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Langdon View Post
Though I now have my PMW 500, I've not had to edit anything myself as yet.

My current laptop has an older version of Avid which I use regularly for editing with SD material.

At some point I'll have to update my kit.

What I'd like to know is what is the workflow like for editing with SxS cards at 50mbps and SDHC cards at 35mbps (more likely to edit with SDHC at this stage).

I'm thinking Mac Book Pro but the latest versions seem to have less and less ports these days. So, am I right in thinking that the latest retina laptop does have a SDHC card reader into which the memory card can be slotted without an attachment and if I had to use as SxS card I'd need a reader attached to the Thunderbolt port?

I understand Sony has an XDCam EX driver that has to be downloaded first before starting any editing.

After this I'm less sure of what happens. Any clues would be useful!

I see Avid offer a 30 day trial of the latest Media Composer 6, but it's expensive. May be cheaper if I can upgrade my old Avid software, but it is Xpress Pro, so not sure if that's an option.

Alternatively there's Final Cut X, but I have no experience of this or Final Cut Pro 7 either. Plus, I'm concerned with X that the video and audio is all on one channel/timeline whereas I'm used to working with Video on one channel, Interviews on another, Natural Sot on another and any Voiceover on yet another in Avid. I hear you can detach audio in X but have no idea how this works, etc.

So, as you can see I have a 2 part question (sort of) as to workflow and then software.

Also, if you're using a MB Pro and want to export the finished edit, what's best to use? I read somewhere that DvDs can cause big problems with quality, etc. Just thinking what's best to give a client when a project is finished.
You,ll need the UDF driver too.. even for down loading cards you,ll need this.. for any 50 Mbps recording ..I now use the Sony USB3 card reader with new Mac Book air.. no AC cable which is nice and fast.. or the sonnet TB reader.. then you,ll need SXS device driver too..(there was a problem with the Sonnet reader and 10.8.2 but I believe thats fixed now) I think all the new Mac Books have SD card slot.. but the express card slot is gone.and mine anyway doesnt have FW any more..
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Old February 27th, 2013, 12:54 AM   #3
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Thanks for this.
The tip about the UDF driver is very useful.
The new Sony reader looks good, especially without the need of a power cable.
Do you export the finished edit back to the Sony reader or do you do something different when you give it to a client?
What editing software do you use?
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Old February 27th, 2013, 03:36 AM   #4
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Hi Kevin

I dont edit.. just send off the footage in a HDD.. or hand it over to the dir..

Yes new reader is good..BUS powered and doesnt need any software at all.. I have the sonnet reader too,and its probably faster that USB3.. but the recent software OS update,and driver conflict for the sonnet was a bit of a worry.. ok now.. but could happen again.. so now I only have the UDF driver to worry about..
I also had a ton of problems when I first got my PMW500 with 64GB cards that weren't be recognized in the exp card slot as Sony hadn't up graded the UDF software to deal with them on a mac.. and in those days it really only EX users who were dealing with SXS in EX BPAV folders.. so the advise wasn't making sense in the UDF world.. my first introduction to the joys of software hell after shooting on tape.. !! so now I go for least stress,least software :) .. I use the "new" content browser to copy with checker and view the odd clip too.. its very good and easy.. does alot more other stuff that i dont use too..
Dont think anyone would copy edited footage back to a SXS card .. export to a HDD I would think..
I also only shoot in the Hyper Gamma,s now too..
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Old February 27th, 2013, 07:12 AM   #5
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Kevin,

I can't answer all your questions, but I'll quickly give you a few words of advice:

1) Forget about FCP. Everyone I know who used to use it is moving to something else. I have recently moved to Premiere CS6, and although there are some features I miss from FCP, overall it is a much better program and Adobe is more committed to the future of professional editing than Apple. Plus the integration with the rest of the Adobe suite (Photoshop, After Effects, Bridge, Encoder, Illustrator, etc.) is excellent. Avid is also an option, but I think you'd be happier with Adobe. If you want to go with Avid I have an unopened Symphony 6 box sitting on my shelf I will sell you cheap. :-)

2) What you deliver to a client, depends entirely on the client. It could be anything from a DVD, Blu-ray, hard drive, FTP, an XDCAM optical disc, or any other device that can hold computer files. I suppose there are still people who output to tape. My favorite deliverable is XDCAM optical discs, but the client must have a device to read it. You'd have to find out from your client BEFORE you even begin production what they expect as a deliverable.

3) Use the camera's UDF mode so you can shoot at 50Mbps. And don't ever use SDHC cards. I don't know if the 500 is compatible with XQD cards yet, but if it is, that is the way to go. The new PMW-200/160/100 cameras can use XQD cards for all video formats (including UDF) and they are a fraction of the price of SxS cards.

Hope that helps point you in the right direction.
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Old February 27th, 2013, 10:43 AM   #6
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Thanks for the response.

Interesting what you say about Final Cut X. I thought it had received a number of upgrades and was now much more professional to use regarding features, etc now than when it was launched to much derision.

FYI SDHC cards are used all the time by BBC News in the UK as SxS cards are deemed too expensive!
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Old February 27th, 2013, 12:40 PM   #7
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Hey, you're the one who was asking for some advice, and my advice is not to use FCPX or SDHC cards for a lot of good reasons that I don't have time to explain.
Take it for what it's worth. :-)
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Old February 27th, 2013, 03:09 PM   #8
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Whoa!

Think you have misinterpreted my response.

Nobody was criticising.

I was only passing on what I'd heard about FCP X and what BBC News do for debate.

I thought the passing on of information was what forums like this are all about?
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Old February 27th, 2013, 03:57 PM   #9
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

There's no problem, I think you miss interpreted my response. I'm just saying that if you ask a dozen people then you'll get a dozen different opinions.
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Old February 27th, 2013, 04:18 PM   #10
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

OK. No worries.
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Old February 27th, 2013, 08:19 PM   #11
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

500 can use XQD cards.. interesting re BBC news.. so you hand over the card directly.. ?
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Old February 28th, 2013, 08:43 AM   #12
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

If the 500 can use XQD cards, then I see no reason why anyone would risk shooting on SDHC. There are still reasons why SxS cards are best, but XQD are only a slight step down -- for a big cost savings.
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Old February 28th, 2013, 09:05 AM   #13
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Robin, to answer your question, yes you hand over the card to the journalist at the end of a shoot.

The reason SDHC cards are used instead of SxS, besides cost, is because news is transmitted at 35mbps compared to programmes which are minimum of 50mbps.

The XQD cards have only just been introduced. But it maybe something they'll consider in the future.
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Old February 28th, 2013, 08:26 PM   #14
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

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Originally Posted by Kevin Langdon View Post
... Final Cut X. I thought it had received a number of upgrades and was now much more professional to use regarding features, etc now than when it was launched to much derision.
You are right, Kevin. Here's my two cents. I shoot XDCAM EX (on an EX1R). I went from FCP 6 to the Adobe Production Premium (best buy ever!). I suffered through a bunch of tutorials on how to use Premiere Pro (PPro) and have found it to be a generally excellent NLE. I particularly like working natively with XDCAM EX files (saving time and drive space because you don't have to put them in a QuickTime wrapper) and found it fairly comparable to old FCP. The same basic approach to editing. However, I had an absolutely massive and complex editing job late last year and early this year and found that PPro lacked a couple of features (which would've helped a lot with this particular job) and I was struggling. Then FCP X released 10.0.6 (prior to this it was an absolute joke, in my opinion) and it just happened to have 2 features which would speed up the job greatly. So I suffered through a bunch of tutorials on how to use it and gritted my teeth as I adjusted to its new "paradigm" as I edited the job. But, by the end, I found FCP X to be blazingly fast, even on routine tasks. It really left old FCP and PPro for dead in terms of speed (once I had adjusted fully to using it).

My two-cents-worth of advice is to get the Adobe Production Premium CS6 (or get their cloud subscription) because it's a fabulous set of tools for professionals. Photoshop and After Effects are now my favourite pieces of software. I prefer the Adobe Media Encoder for turning out 1080p .mp4 files over the .mp4 output of either Compressor or FCP X. And last week the client wanted me to film interviews in their reception area (with the phones ringing!), but I used Audition and it 100% eliminated the phones. I can't praise the Adobe suite highly enough. However, because time really is money, also get FCP X and Compressor (and they're relatively cheap).

PPro = Excellent NLE. FCP X = Faster. Much faster.

As Doug said, if you ask 12 different people, you'll get 12 different opinions - and Doug's opinion is one that I have the very highest respect for. And I do know that if I hadn't been "forced" by the demands of that particular job to learn and use FCP X, I would never have touched it. But now it's my first choice. Go figure.
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Old March 1st, 2013, 04:01 AM   #15
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Re: Sony PMW Camera - Editing Workflow

Video is only a hobby for me, but I like to use professional stuff. I hate it when companies like Apple leave their professional customers in the cold in favour of the gadget-market (iPhone, iPad,...).

I've also struggled through manuals and tutorials to get a grasp on FCP7 and now I read from a real pro that I 'should forget about it', and convert to Adobe. I really don't feel like going through weeks of self-training again for the few days a month that I use my editing gear and software.

Guess I'll just have to stick to FCP7, my Mac Pro (that will also be abandoned by Apple shortly, no doubt) and my wonderful PMW320. And of course, never upgrade the OS to avoid having drivers and such that don't work anymore... Life's hard.
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