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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...

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Old October 25th, 2009, 06:14 PM   #16
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Nashville, TN
Posts: 253
Ha ha, funny Jeff.

I use both types of file/video acquisition and storage, and I'm all about the new technology - but I've seen electronics fail at the worst, worst possible times. If a CF format cam or SD format cam flips out at the wrong time, poof - all the data is gone, and trying to restore it may be either very costly or impossible. If there was an internal drive, it *might* be recoverable, or might not. At least with the A1s I can be fairly sure that I can get something from the tape even if the cam shuts down. Not always, as some have mentioned above, but I'd say the VAST majority of the time.

If an electronic cam shuts down while you are recording, for example, the file you were recording to may be either a) not there, or b) corrupted and unusable. Sucky thing to have happen during a wedding, for sure. With a tape-based cam you still might be able to get everything up to that point. It could mean the difference between getting the shot or not, even if you have other cams running.

Going down the road of electronic redundancy is not easy or cheap, and it can also be system intensive copying massive files from drive to drive or over your LAN/WAN/Internet. Big companies still do massive tape backups of data, probably because tape is likely to hold up long-term better than a mechanical hard drive and they know it. Moving all that data around regularly from drive to drive could be prohibitively expensive compared to a tape shelf life, which is overall much longer than a drive.

Overall, I am using file-based media because I have to - but I have used it enough to know that it's not perfect, and not necessarily better or more reliable overall than tape for video storage.
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Old October 25th, 2009, 07:08 PM   #17
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Moody, AL
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Our company switched from using Sony FX7's to Sony EX1's back in May, and we haven't looked back since. The improvements in footage quality, low-light recording capability, and ease of workflow have been worth the investment. I love being able to import footage at 6 to 8 times real-time speed. XDCAM EX edits great in FCP too.
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