Time to complete MEDIA EMPTY on SD/MemoryStick PRO-HG Duo cards versus FMU128 unit at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony NXCAM / AVCHD Camcorders

Sony NXCAM / AVCHD Camcorders
Sony HXR-NX100, HXR-NX70, NX30, NX5, NX3/1, HXR-MC2500, HDR-AX2000, etc.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old March 21st, 2010, 04:56 AM   #1
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: New York, USA
Posts: 111
Time to complete MEDIA EMPTY on SD/MemoryStick PRO-HG Duo cards versus FMU128 unit

Hi All

I've noticed that when performing a MEDIA EMPTY operation (what I call a 'deep reformat') on SD cards or Sony MemoryStick PRO-HG Duo cards it goes extremely quickly compared to performing it on the FMU.

With the SD or MemoryStick cards it takes only about twice as long as a normal MEDIA FORMAT operation -- in other words, less than about 2 minutes on a full 16GB card.

As an experiment I shot a 16GB SanDisk Extreme 30MB/s Class 10-rated card 100% full of random footage.

The MEDIA EMPTY operation took only 1 min 37 seconds -- but the camera estimated that the operation would take 26 min 44 seconds before the start of the operation.

My previous MEDIA EMPTY operation on my FMU128 have taken around the time estimated by the camera -- almost 2 HOURS (!) on a nearly-full FMU.

Does this indicate a firmware fault around the MEDIA EMPTY operation when it comes to SD and MemoryStick cards? If the MEDIA EMPTY operation is supposed to overwrite the previously recorded area of the card with random data, surely it should take longer than 1 min 37 sec to create and write 16GB of data to the card? Perhaps it's not actually doing this!

Cheers

Adam

PS I'll be writing more about this on my blog Adam Welz's NXCAM Blog later today. I've been so busy shooting in the last week that I've had no time to blog.
Adam Welz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 21st, 2010, 06:51 AM   #2
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Québec, Canada
Posts: 177
Hello Adams,

We cannot thank you enough for providing all of this information.

In my own opinion, a camera should not be used for those type of operations. In my mind a camera is there to film, film and film.

You seem to be well connected with Sony personal. Would you be able to find out if they will come out with a deck that would be used exactly for formatting, repairing SDHC and FMU128 drives.

These operations cannot be done with the cameras at the time you are supposed to be shooting. What if doing this the camera does not come back and can no longer film?

The camera's are then acting like computers which they are not. Each time the camera reboot I am afraid it will not come back. I usually turn my camera on in the morning and turn it off when I am done at the end of the day. In doing so, I am in control, when the camera reboot for any reason I no longer am in control.

If Sony are not going to come with a deck for the management of SDHC and FMU drives, I would hope they would recommend something that would do the same on a MAC and on a PC.

I am shooting short programs, extracting individual files from the SDHC and FMU works fine with me. It's only when filming long programs (shows) that I need to do a log and transfer in FinalCut Pro.

Can you tell us more about the error message i.e
- Are the message only appear on the camera LCD or on both the LCD and any external monitor connected to the camera?
- Does the image on the external monitor continues to appear while filming and the error occur?
- Did I read once, you've experimented a problem where the camera turned itself off when having the Overflow appeared?
- Those overflow problems can occur right in the middle of filming an event? Not only when pushing the start/stop record button?

P.S.: I am using my cameras like crazy at the moment, to see, if I will get any of those error messages.

Regards!
__________________
Daniel Paquin
Production ZoOM vidéo
Daniel Paquin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 21st, 2010, 08:37 AM   #3
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3,940
As I reported in another thread my NX5U performed a Media Empty on my Patriot 32G Class 10 card in the same way you reported. Quoting a long time but completing the operation only a little bit longer than the format both less than a min. The FMU took 1 hour and 40 mins. Of course the structures are different but considering the fact that the red activity light stays on longer for the card than the FMU when recording is stopped I would have expected the operation to take longer on the card than the FMU !!

Ron Evans
Ron Evans is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 21st, 2010, 09:58 AM   #4
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Québec, Canada
Posts: 177
I've just looked at one of my blank FMU drive, coming directly from Sony .

Using the Finder on my Mac its says there is a straight 128 GIG available. There are no hidden files either. This mean no structure exist when those disk are being distributed. Even, the disk is specially made for the NXCAM there are no directory structure which exist at time 0.

What could the NXCAM "Empty media" option do which cannot be done on a computer? I can only think is that at the end it recreates the directory structure used by the camera. All the times used (i.e 1h40 as reported by Ron) is the time it takes to deleted the file from the disk. Why that long, in my mind a reasonable reason would be that the camera is not a computer but has computing functions. It does not have all the power a computer has when deleting files, therefore taking much longer to delete files than usual.

If it's the only thing, what differences is it then deleting all the files with the help of a computer?

I am asking this question because the first time you use the disk with the camera, you get a prompt on the LCD screen asking if you want to create the database. By answering yes, the cameras takes a few second to create the directory structure with all the required files.

What does a bad sector means, does it damage the disk physically internally. I thought that was not possible on flash drives since there are no mechanical like with usual hard drive.

Would reformatting the drive with my Mac remove the bad sector. If this is physical I do not think so. If it not physical I would beleive a straight reformat should fix everything.

What does people think?
__________________
Daniel Paquin
Production ZoOM vidéo
Daniel Paquin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 21st, 2010, 10:46 AM   #5
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3,940
I think the Media Empty does what a lot of full delete programs do which is to write to each location on the media so that there is no possibility of anyone being able to extract previous data from the disc. Some really secure programs write several times to the same location with different structures to completely remove any history. A normal delete operation just makes the location available but all the data is still there on the disc, nothing has been overwritten so can be recovered with data recovery software. The Content management software help file even says that if the camera cannot recover all the data still transfer to the PC and the content management software may still be able to use the file even if some meta data is missing. I am not sure of the technology of the SD cards but perhaps this operation is easily performed which might account for the short time compared to the FMU which may be structured differently.
The base file system is FAT32 so if you do this on the MAC you would have to use FAT32. Sony is clearly PC biased so be careful. The card would still have to be formatted on the camera to create the directory structure.
Not having a MAC I do not know if Finder can see hidden files on a FAT32 media. Since I have formatted my FMU now I cannot tell if it had hidden files. Do you see the .SonyVID file and in the BDMV directory the INDEX.BDM and MOVIEOBJ.BDM files ?
I doubt whether this issue is a bad sector it is more likely an error in completing an update to the File Allocation Table which tells the camera( and the PC) where all the data is that is associated together( a single file if less than 2 G and then would need meta data to define as a clip if there are multiple 2G files).

Ron Evans
Ron Evans is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 21st, 2010, 11:08 AM   #6
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Québec, Canada
Posts: 177
I do not see the .SonyVID file;
I see the INDEX.BDM and MOVIEOBJ.BDM files in the BDMV directory.

I've restarted my Mac and found on the FMU128 three hidden directories: .fseventsd .Spotlight-V100 .Trashes

After reading on the internet I found out those directories are created when connecting a flash drive to a Mac. http://www.ghacks.net/2009/08/19/spo...-flash-drives/

I've connected the Flash Drive to the camera and did not have any problems with it. First thing it did was to scan the disk and found out there was no Image Database File on the disk. I've answered Yes to this prompt and was able to record without any problems.

I've started a MEDIA EMPTY operation on an empty FMU128 and it's going to take more than an hour to recover the disk. In the meantime I am not able to do anything with the camera. It says that if you stop the operation you must be sure to complete it before doing anymore recording. I am going to let it go now, but in the future I would be tempted to do something else.

It also says Not disconnect the AC Adaptor/ Charger during the operation and do not apply any vibrations or shocks to your camcorder during this operation. Doing this operation I find you are really at risk to create bad sector on the flash drive. To be in a better situation, I should have connected my camera alone to a UPS.

I am going to investigate further more reformatting the drive with my Mac.
__________________
Daniel Paquin
Production ZoOM vidéo

Last edited by Daniel Paquin; March 21st, 2010 at 12:34 PM.
Daniel Paquin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 21st, 2010, 12:00 PM   #7
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3,940
I expect the .SonyVID file is put on at format in the camera. It is a hidden file in the root of the card and likely why one cannot just reproduce the directories on a PC as the camera will look for this file to verify that card has been formatted on the camera.

Ron Evans
Ron Evans is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Sony XAVC / XDCAM / NXCAM / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Sony NXCAM / AVCHD Camcorders

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:01 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network