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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old July 6th, 2008, 11:45 AM   #1
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need advice on how many SxS cards to buy

I am thinking of buying the Sony EX1 but since I am often going for long trip when I shoot about 9 hours of DV in a 2-3 week period, I am not keen to buy more than 2 SXS 16 Gb cards. What would be the best compromise to make between the number of cards to buy and find the right device to donwload the shots from the cards to a hard drive ? Would a laptop to carry with me be better than a dedicated external drive to buy from Sony (if they have one for the SxS card download?
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Old July 6th, 2008, 12:08 PM   #2
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You will need a computer (ie notebook) to download the cards. Best get a notebook (Macbook Pro or a Windows machine). Almost all include the ExpressCard slot to read the SxS cards, but check to make sure anyway.

Get one with a DL DVD writer (Mac: Superdrive) and take DL DVD's with you. Ship a copy home and keep one in your luggage (separate from the notebook). Also leave the files on the notebook if you can.

Best to work with 8GB cards as they can easily be backed up to DL DVD, or you can split the 16GB cards.

Since you only project to have 180GB of data (9 hours) over 2-3 weeks that should work just fine, unless you plan to record something like 2 major shows of 4-5 hours each...

George/
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Old July 6th, 2008, 12:16 PM   #3
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Yes, I agree. Very good advice here. MBP (I've just got one) is a superb tool anyway (better than a normal laptop!) so no point spending more on SXS cards. I haven't got my EX3 yet (on order) but a mate who has the EX1 also recommends the 8GB SxS cards for the very same reasons George mentions.
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Old July 6th, 2008, 02:45 PM   #4
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I also have MacBookPro.
Your EX1 should have 2 8GB cards already (1 with camera and 1 rebate).
I prefer the longer record time of the 16GB and have no problem splitting for 8GB DL-DVD back up.
In addition to the 2 8GB cards I have 1 16GB card.
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Old July 6th, 2008, 03:51 PM   #5
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Thanks for these useful comments. I currently have a Toshiba laptop T2300 1.66 GHz with a small hard drive but plenty of external drives I can plug in. But I am not sure if the DVD burner is DL. How could I find out?

I do all my montages on an MacPro which is great. But if I burn DL DVDs with the laptop (supposing it has DL DVD burner), I presume thsy could be read with no problem on my MacPro?
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Old July 6th, 2008, 04:19 PM   #6
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I believe all recent DVD burners are DL. Your burn application may be able to show you the drives capabilities or you can use DVDINFOPro™: http://www.dvdinfopro.com/

Alternatively just buy some disks and test it.

If using external disks with your notebook is not a problem/hassle, that's fine. But you could upgrade the internal drive to a bigger/faster one as well. Some computer skills needed...

The Mac Pro will read the DL DVD's just fine.

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Old July 6th, 2008, 04:43 PM   #7
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Another question: when travelling by air I may only bring with me one carry on baggage. So that means I could not bring with me as carry on bag both the EX1 camera case and the laptop bag. And I would hate to let the laptop go into checked baggage.
So I am wondering if it is possible to find an external DL DVD burner, small enough to bring anywere with me, that I can plug into the EX1 camera (and powerplug it to a wall outlet in my hotel for example). In other words, can I use a DL DVD burner which is not built in a laptop and that can be connected to the EX1 to transfer the Sxs card data into a DL DVD ?
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Old July 6th, 2008, 05:15 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Francois Dormoy View Post
In other words, can I use a DL DVD burner which is not built in a laptop and that can be connected to the EX1 to transfer the Sxs card data into a DL DVD ?
Unfortunately, in order to transfer from SxS to a DVD (or HDD) drive, you need a host computer...
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Old July 6th, 2008, 05:19 PM   #9
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Sony will have a hard drive that can be powered from an EX battery, will have an SxS connector, that one can record to directly or copy from the card in one slot to the hard drive. The Drive will only have 60GB of storage though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Piotr Wozniacki View Post
Unfortunately, in order to transfer from SxS to a DVD (or HDD) drive, you need a host computer...
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Old July 6th, 2008, 05:22 PM   #10
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I have a bag that fits the EX1 and a 15" laptop. The bag is a bit like an oversized backpack and has wheels like one of those small luggage carts so many tourists/travelers use. I got it at B&H in NYC.

QUOTE=Francois Dormoy;903774]Another question: when travelling by air I may only bring with me one carry on baggage. So that means I could not bring with me as carry on bag both the EX1 camera case and the laptop bag. And I would hate to let the laptop go into checked baggage.
So I am wondering if it is possible to find an external DL DVD burner, small enough to bring anywere with me, that I can plug into the EX1 camera (and powerplug it to a wall outlet in my hotel for example). In other words, can I use a DL DVD burner which is not built in a laptop and that can be connected to the EX1 to transfer the Sxs card data into a DL DVD ?[/QUOTE]
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Old July 6th, 2008, 05:42 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Craig Seeman View Post
Sony will have a hard drive that can be powered from an EX battery, will have an SxS connector, that one can record to directly or copy from the card in one slot to the hard drive. The Drive will only have 60GB of storage though.
Exactly - and this drive (just like the previous DR60, or Firestores and alike) DO have a "host computer" in their firmware, which (along with some extra shock protection) makes them the most expensive drives per GB...
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Old July 6th, 2008, 06:02 PM   #12
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My initial reaction would be to get 2 x 16G cards, a notebook with 2 x 160 G external 2.5" or larger disks (LaCie or WD Passport) used to transfer your shots to, and a Kata case to store them all together within airline size limits (with insert trolley).

I recently had to go on a 11 day sailing trip with no possibility to get extra disks or media and ended up with around 7 hours of source material from that trip. The downside was it was only a Z1, so 12 tapes was enough, but with an EX1 for a similar trip, this would be my preferred configuration. Look here for the result of that sailing trip: http://www.vimeo.com/1122531
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Old July 6th, 2008, 06:56 PM   #13
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Yup. Probably about $1000 US for 60GB hard drive. Personally I think it makes more sense to get a laptop with Express card slot. Certainly some folks might find the 60GB hard drive more convenient. The hard drive option certainly does exist though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Piotr Wozniacki View Post
Exactly - and this drive (just like the previous DR60, or Firestores and alike) DO have a "host computer" in their firmware, which (along with some extra shock protection) makes them the most expensive drives per GB...
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Old July 7th, 2008, 01:47 AM   #14
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Hi,

I think I found about the following product on this site but can't find the thread, will this device be able to solve the portable storage problems ?

Am about to get the EX1 and this media reader looks like a nice cheap option IF it works.

320 GB @ $ 255 USD seems very reasonable.

NEXTO EXTREME ND-2700 PROFESSIONAL STORAGE DEVICE - 320GB
Part#: ND-2700-320
Brand Name: NextoDi

Price: US$254.74

http://www.nextodi.com/en/
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Old July 7th, 2008, 03:54 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Paporakis View Post
NEXTO EXTREME ND-2700 PROFESSIONAL STORAGE DEVICE - 320GB
That won't work as you can't use it to offload SxS cards.

George/

P.S. You may be able to use this to offload Flash XDR/nanoFlash CF cards.
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