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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 December 31st, 2010, 03:55 PM   #16
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On a SOMEWHAT related note, THANKS to everyone for this interesting discussion.

At my day gig, we JUST purchased an EX1r and I am the person responsible for the white paper on workflow. After reading this, I have implemented the Clip Browser copy method so that we have a verified file transfer for archive.

Works for me.
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Old January 4th, 2011, 01:44 PM   #17
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One thing the use of clip browser prevents is users delving in to the BPAV folders and only copying part of the required data. If you tell people that they must use Clip Browser then it can prevent all kinds of issues. Seasoned EX user know that you can use just about any tool to copy the data, but I get so many requests for help from people that have messed up their file structure by not copying the entire BPAV folder that I would classify it as a common problem. Tell them that they must use Clip Browser and the problem should not occur.
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Old January 6th, 2011, 08:44 AM   #18
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Here's my Apple FCP workflow. Been using it for 2 years and haven't had a problem yet. (crossing my fingers)

1) Format SxS card(s) in camera. (I never format/erase them using a computer)

2) Capture footage using EX3 camera

3) Copy data from SxS cards to a G-DRIVE archive drive using Clip Browser.
NOTE: Clip Browser both error checks the files and joins clips together that span more than one card

4) Using Final Cut Pro Log & Capture I import the files from the G-DRIVE hard drive to our G-SPEED RAID. This re-wraps them to MOV files.

5) We have a large Drobo Pro we use for backup. Using Apple Time Machine we automatically backup both the G-SPEED RAID (MOV files) and the G-DRIVE (BPAV files) to the Drobo Pro. This happens automatically many times throughout the day running in the background.
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Old January 7th, 2011, 06:07 AM   #19
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I've found this works too ......

Yes - an interesting thread.

My (in the field) method over the past nearly 2 years gives me peace of mind:

1) Copy BPAV folder straight from card to Hard drive (32Gb in 8mins via ExpressCard socket!)
2) Open up XDCAM Transfer and open the (disk based) BPAV in there. Check that all the clips display - I go through and randomly play a few.
3) If all ok, copy the BPAV to the 2 backup external drives - do the same quick check if time.
4) Ready to re-format SxS cards

I've found that any anomolies will mean that XDCAM Transfer gives all sorts of error messages, blank clips and you know something is wrong. I've only had problems once and that was using SDHC cards in an adapter. Decided to use SxS ever since without any problems.

I think that XDCAM Transfer is a bit overlooked. When I had the (above mentioned) problem, and a card got corrupted, I was able to navigate through to the MPEG files and it gave me nearly all my clips back. I was also able to salvage part of the clip which was being recorded when I got the error message. Not an experience that I ever want to have again though .......
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Old January 7th, 2011, 11:58 AM   #20
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Of course we should all be using XDCAM Browser now which is a combination of XDCAM Transfer Tool and EX Clip Browser in the same tool. Then in one application you can backup your BPAV's from your cards and export the .mov's that you need for the edit. No need to use log and transfer.
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Old January 7th, 2011, 04:19 PM   #21
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Think twice betore switching to XDCAM BROWSER

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alister Chapman View Post
Of course we should all be using XDCAM Browser . . .
Well, I'd strongly disagree with that. I wouldn't advise any FCP user to switch to the new XDCAM Browser software. Version 1.0 is a step backwards for Sony and has created quite a stir even within the company. It's clear the software engineers in Japan just don't understand how things work in the real world. They took a great workflow and nearly derailed it. You're welcome to check my website if you want to hear my arguments against XDCAM Browser V1.0

XDCAM Browser 1.0 review:
Vortex Media: VIDEO & PHOTO Tools and Training


My advice is to stick with the traditional Clip Browser + XDCAM Transfer workflow. It works great. It's easy. And its very powerful.
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Old January 7th, 2011, 04:31 PM   #22
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I have not been using XDCAM Browser and just looking through it and Doug's comments I would agree with Doug that you need to think very carefully before making the switch.
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Old January 8th, 2011, 01:16 PM   #23
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Thx to all for laying out the various workflows. The thing that tee's me off is the lack of support anymore for the Express 34 slot on laptops. I happen to have an Apple laptop that has the slot but note that most new computers don't. (One exception is the Apple 17" laptop currently sold). Of course, this unit will cost you a boat load of dough.
My editing machine is a Mac Pro. Anyone have working solutions in play for this machine? I haven't seen any Express 34 slot cards.

Currently, using 2 methods, both awkward.

#1- copy cards via express 34 on laptop then out the firewire port to my archive drive (lacie ruggedized USB, Firewire, Sata portable drive). After copy, plug the Lacie drive into Mac Pro and copy files to the media drive. Time consuming.

#2- Use the camera's USB port to copy directly to the Mac Pro, using Shot Put Pro to make simultaneous copies to the Mac's media drive and the Lacie archive drive. Only issues here are speed and I don't want to wear out the port on the camera. It's bound to have mechanical problems sooner or later. I can't see that purchasing the 300 dollar Sony USB card reader is going to increase speed.

Note that I shoot long shows. Use 32 gig cards so copy time does play a role in my workflow.
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Old January 8th, 2011, 01:31 PM   #24
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All you need is a SBAC-US10. Best $270 you'll ever spend. Saves wear and tear on the camcorder and it's about twice as fast.

Sony SBAC-US10 SxS Memory Card USB Reader/Writer SBAC-US10 B&H
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Old January 8th, 2011, 01:41 PM   #25
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Vortex Doug, ? about your website posting

Doug,
Read your review of XD browser, thanks for the info. I noticed the article below it talking about FC Pro SD workflow. What is the main reason you don't edit in HD and drop that sequence into an SD sequence at the end? Is it a render time issue or do you find a QUALITY difference in the end product?

thx
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Old January 9th, 2011, 06:01 AM   #26
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The SBAC-US10 is faster than the camera, but not by that much IMHO as the performance is limited by the USB connection.

There are faster options but none of them come cheap. One is to use the Sony PXU-MS240 mobile storage unit connected via eSata. This can copy a full 32Gb card to a computer in about 7 minutes. Sonnet also have the QIO which is an express card (and others) to esata adapter specifically designed to work with SxS but I don't know of anyone using one of these.

Sonnet - Qio: Professional Universal Media Reader/Writer Plus Four eSATA Ports

I have one of the older style MacBook Pros with an express card slot and intend to hang on to it rather than upgrade.
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Old January 10th, 2011, 08:00 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Morgan View Post
Doug,
Read your review of XD browser, thanks for the info. I noticed the article below it talking about FC Pro SD workflow. What is the main reason you don't edit in HD and drop that sequence into an SD sequence at the end? Is it a render time issue or do you find a QUALITY difference in the end product?
thx
dave
David, there are several reasons why I don't edit with an HD timeline if I will not need any HD output.

1) My DVDs typically contain a lot of graphics, charts, animations, etc. and it is easier to create those at SD resolutions.

2) Video footage downscalses easily, but graphics and animations are trickier. By editing with an SD timeline I can see EXACTLY what they will look like, and thus avoid potential problems that wouldn't manifest themselves until after I'd rendered the whole thing. Some things that look good in HD don't look so great when downconverted.

3) I can scan & pan the HD footage to change the composition whenever I choose.

4) I can key-frame fake zooms or other camera moves.

5) There is no rendering at the end of the editing. Even a 2-hour program can be exported in just a few minutes. This is especially important if I get into the DVD authoring stage and notice any editing problems (such as a flash frame or graphics typo) that need to be corrected. If the sequence was done in HD, then I may have to re-render the whole thing and that could take hours. But, if the sequence is SD, I can make the change and export a new version in a matter of minutes.

6) I believe the quality of the finished DVD is superior if I have edited with an SD timeline rather than downconverting at the very end.

7) Other proprietary reasons that I choose not to disclose here.

Of course, if I do need HD output, then, of course, I will edit with an HD timeline and downcovert at the very end. Different workflows for different needs.

Here's a screen shot from an SD project I'm editing right now. Do I really want to create all this in HD just to throw away the HD timeline and downconvert at the very end? Seems like that would be a waste of time to me.
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What's the big scare about copying BPAV?-fcp-sequence.jpg  
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Last edited by Doug Jensen; January 10th, 2011 at 10:51 AM. Reason: Added graphic
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Old January 10th, 2011, 08:08 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alister Chapman View Post
The SBAC-US10 is faster than the camera, but not by that much IMHO as the performance is limited by the USB connection.
I have found the SBAC-US10 to be significantly faster than the camera. Yes, they are both USB, but the drive is still faster. I can't quote exact speeds because it has been so long since I used the camera, but, in my opinion, there's a big enough difference to make it worth it.
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Old January 11th, 2011, 09:08 PM   #29
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Doug,
thx for posting the extensive reply. I see your reasoning.
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