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Old May 2nd, 2012, 04:16 AM   #1
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Sony XDCAM Browser: MXF always 4 Channel audio?

Hello

I recently noticed that both XDCAM Browser 2.0 and XDCAM EX Clip Browser 2.6 (why are there two softwares?) are always producing 4 audio tracks in the exported MXF files. I have two channel audio (stereo) in my EX1 camera material, so why is there no channel mapping feature for export? There is needless file increasing, and I got problems in Encoding programs (f.e. Procoder 3.06: crash! Sorenson Squeeze 7: crash!)
Have I missed something in the Sony software?

many thanks
Burkhard
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Old May 2nd, 2012, 07:00 AM   #2
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Re: Sony XDCAM Browser: MXF always 4 Channel audio?

Clip browser was the original XDCAM EX only software and is no longer supported. XDCAM Browser supports all flavours of XDCAM and replaces both Clip Browser and the FCP Transfer Tool.

There are always 4 audio channels as this is the standard for XDCAM HD MXF's and XDCAM HD422 MXF's. MXF files exported from XDCAM Browser can in many cases be archived directly to XDCAM optical disc or stay compatible with the XDCAM HD422 products. There are a couple of exceptions depending on frame size and bit rate (35Mb/s 1920x1080 is the main one), but the idea is to keep as close to the XDCAM HD standard as possible. If you shoot 1440x1080 35Mb/s on an EX, you can export an MXF directly to XDCAM HD optical disc using XDCAM Browser.

There only a very minimal files size increase as the tracks are empty. Some of the file size increase comes from the metadata which is stored within the MXF file.
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Old May 2nd, 2012, 07:50 AM   #3
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Re: Sony XDCAM Browser: MXF always 4 Channel audio?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Burkhard Scheibe View Post
Hello

I recently noticed that both XDCAM Browser 2.0 and XDCAM EX Clip Browser 2.6 (why are there two softwares?) are always producing 4 audio tracks in the exported MXF files. I have two channel audio (stereo) in my EX1 camera material, so why is there no channel mapping feature for export? There is needless file increasing, and I got problems in Encoding programs (f.e. Procoder 3.06: crash! Sorenson Squeeze 7: crash!)
Have I missed something in the Sony software?

many thanks
Burkhard
You haven't missed anything. The standard as Alister points out is 4ch audio. Not all software will like it though. When I was using Avid Liquid for editing I had to use Clip Browser v2.0 to export my EX1 video or the Liquid would not import the video.

I also have Procoder and it will not take MXF files from v2.6.

Your problem with Sorenson is that Squeeze 7 does not support MXF at all. That isn't a Sony problem but a Squeeze problem. I've not tried it with Squeeze 8. I use FFMPEG or MPEG2STREAMCLIP for most of my container swaps.

What are you actually trying to do with the MXF files? Convert from MXF to something else or get them into your edit system??
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Old May 2nd, 2012, 08:34 AM   #4
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Re: Sony XDCAM Browser: MXF always 4 Channel audio?

thank you Alister and Chris!

@Chris: for some reasons I need fast playouts from the raw material to any preview files or DVD (one or two hours of continously recording). I stitch the EX1 MP4 raw files with XDCAM Browser to one big MXF file (which I also use for later editing in Avid, no problems) and load them in different Encoding programs. I've experienced only one program which can handle the 4 channel audio MXF files correctly: Telestream Episode (Channel mapping is possible).
But I've found a solution for Squeeze 7: there is no problem to import the MXF files, the crash happens late at the end of encoding. So I made a stereo playout of the audio tracks from Media Composer and replace the original 4 channel audio with the exported stereo PCM files before encoding (Link Audio function in Squeeze). In this way I can use Squeeze for any encoding.
The inbuild WMV export function in the XDCAM Browser, for which I paid extra money, is useless, because larger files don't play correctly in Windows Media Player (something like "memory overload" is happening)

Burkhard
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Old May 4th, 2012, 04:22 AM   #5
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Re: Sony XDCAM Browser: MXF always 4 Channel audio?

Why don't you give your customers a copy of XDCAM Browser to play back your material?
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Old May 5th, 2012, 05:00 AM   #6
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Re: Sony XDCAM Browser: MXF always 4 Channel audio?

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Originally Posted by Alister Chapman View Post
Why don't you give your customers a copy of XDCAM Browser to play back your material?
No, I can't supply gigabytes of raw material quickly. The idea is to deliver small preview files, available via download...
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