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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 November 13th, 2009, 02:23 PM   #1
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Offloading live

I have noticed occasionally people mention they offload live while shooting. How do you do it? I mean, at least on my EX3, you have to press a button which then pops out, then you have to press it hard again, sometimes repeatedly, to get the card to come out. Then you have to stick your fingers in to grab the card and then, finally, you can pull it out. Once offloaded, you have to insert the card it and press it to pop it in. How can you do all this while shooting without getting the camera body to move?
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Old November 13th, 2009, 03:04 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam Stanislav View Post
How can you do all this while shooting without getting the camera body to move?
I presume that they're talking about a situation where you shoot on Card A, which fills. The Camera switches to Card B, and you carefully remove Card A whilst the camera continues to record on Card B and copy the BPAV onto a nearby laptop, which happens at between x2 and x6 times real time, so 15-25 minutes for a 16 GB card.

You then reinsert Card A as the camera continues to shoot on card B, format Card A (you can't format the card you're shooting to), then wait for Card B to fill so the EX1 switches to Card A again, where you remove Card B and rinse, repeat.

With a good quality tripod and a modestly moving shot (e.g. a closeup on the speaker at a conference), this is achievable - better yet, have a wrangler standing by to do the transfer for you, as really it's too much to handle to guarantee full attention to all jobs.

Everyone tries it once, then either gets a wrangler, gets more cards (my choice), or gets an external recording device.

BIG BIG BIG TIP: Copy the BPAV files, and DO NOT try to use XDCAM Transfer, because the split clip thing doesn't work that way (it works from the last bit), and trying to do inpoints and out points or individual segments would be like converting Fahrenheit to Celsius whilst your house burns down around you.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 03:43 PM   #3
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Yes, that is what I am talking about. I do not need it yet, but I see people saying they do it and I am just wondering how they can. It seems rather hard.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 03:56 PM   #4
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Matt's got it right. Get more cards. Copy all folders (with Clip Browser) before using XDCAM Transfer.

Personally I think offloading during a shoot is an accident waiting to happen. Two 32GB cards will have you set for nearly 4 hours. Changing cards isn't too difficult once you develop "the touch" and the camera is on a locked shot.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 06:24 PM   #5
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I've done this plenty of times during concerts though usually there is a break somewhere so I can stop the camera.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 06:44 PM   #6
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Ah, so you stop the camera. Now that I can see. Thanks.
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Old November 14th, 2009, 03:24 AM   #7
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you don't have to stop the camera you just remove the card that is completed, The problem is doing that and replacing a card without jarring the camera.
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Old November 14th, 2009, 05:31 AM   #8
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If you must change card while shooting, go as wide as possible to minimize camera movement. It'll be for just a few seconds.
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Old November 14th, 2009, 11:53 AM   #9
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MXR adapters and continuous recording

This is slightly off subject but may be of importance for people doing long continuous recordings using adapter cards.

I was offloading while shooting while taping a conference recently with an EX1 and recording using MXR adapters (the original, not the locking kind) with transcend class 6 16gb SD cards as well as one 8gb sxs card.

I noticed when looking at the footage later that the adapter cards are vulnerable in this situation to momentary recording glitches that look similar to DV tape dropouts. Footage was captured with clip browser.

I'm not sure about precisely what I was doing at the moment of the dropouts. But the thing I was doing the most was ejecting and inserting cards (sometimes MXR, sometimes SXS) in the slot not being recorded to. The other possibility was the moment of switching between battery and plug-in power while recording.

In studio shooting where nothing much changes while the camera is recording the the MXRs have been fine. Except for once throwing an error where the camera was transitioning while recording from a full card to an empty one while recording between an MXR and an SXS card (can't recall which was the full card and which was the empty though).

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Old November 15th, 2009, 10:29 AM   #10
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Straight off, have never experienced this. Film loads of stuff that spans cards, mostly presentations in quasi studio conditions. Never a problem.

But... Let's assume a clip spans two cards, and it's high action stuff that's stressing the GOP structure. Would that glitch be when the GOP spans a disk? To me, it shouldn't, because it's just data being recorded. It gets reconstituted in software.

But then I only use XDCAM Transfer - did you try this on your dodgy clips?
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Old November 16th, 2009, 10:13 AM   #11
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I always capture with clip browser then unwrap with xdcam transfer.

I noticed the few momentary glitches in playback well after the original video on the cards were erased. I now know to watch the unwrapped/joined video in real time to check for glitches before deleting the original if tiny glitches like that aren't tolerable.

Probably worth testing to see which of the possible causes really produces the glitch. I can arrange to no switch from/to battery power but avoiding puling/inserting cards while recording is a little harder.

All my conference stuff is pretty low-motion.
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