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Old January 4th, 2016, 03:01 AM   #1
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External recorder connected to PC?

Hoping someone may have done this before....

I want to be able to record an event (multiple 3-4 min files over the course of a day) onto an external recorder or hard drive, which at the same time is connected to my laptop, so in between shooting I can be doing quick edits and burning dvds.

My Camera has HDMI out and SDI out so I can go either way.
Ideally it would be activated by hitting record on the camera, not have to hit record on cam and device.

Quality is not a major issue, dont need uncompressed or similar.

Any thoughts much appreciated.
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Old January 4th, 2016, 05:24 AM   #2
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

i've kept my cs5.5 on a laptop simply because of 'on location'. mind you, it's fire wire and not much use nowadays - though i did look at this, but never got round to buying it:

BH (Links)

be glad to read of any alternative - if there is one ;-(
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Old January 4th, 2016, 11:55 AM   #3
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

The AJA KiPro Rack has ethernet connectivity that allows you to download clips from the drives over a network. You can also download over FireWire. Unfortunately, you can't download and record at the same time. For that you'd be looking at something like an EVS unit.
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Old January 4th, 2016, 11:28 PM   #4
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

Thanks Leslie and Edward,

I knew I kept my Z5 for a reason Leslie :) Firewire out, no problem... but Firewire in could be a challenge...
That unit looks like a great idea but very pricey-
Grass Valley ADVC HD50 HD Video Converter | Analog & Digital Converters | Video Converters & DA's | Video | New Media Sales

Other option may be to get an Intensity Shuttle, ticks the box for ease of use, usb3, but file sizes are painful.
I know the gaming guys use h264 capture cards via hdmi. Might research this a bit more
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Old January 5th, 2016, 12:35 AM   #5
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

i was using my z5 firewire out to an 'old' tosh satelite running win7 / duocore with a usb2 ex hd hanging off it. never missed a beat.
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Old January 5th, 2016, 09:36 PM   #6
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

I've used a Nanoflash for exactly this type of situation when shooting arbitration court hearings. Whether this would work for you I don't know.

Method #1 - Start camera and it triggers and records onto the first card in the Nano. Pull card #1 and restart camera which now starts recording on card #2. I then just import the MXF or MOV files via a CF card reader.

Method #2 - If I don't want the camera to stop at all I disable the SDI trigger to the Nano and start the Nano from its own record button. I then just stop the Nano as and when I need to pull a card for a quick edit.

Stopping and starting and swapping the card on the Nano is like a 5-7 sec operation.

I've also used these. With BM's Media Express capture software you can capture straight from various sources straight to H.264 at various resolutions and bit rates. This might actually be your best option at a reasonable price.

https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/pro...264prorecorder

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Old January 6th, 2016, 04:02 AM   #7
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

Thanks Chris,
That advice led to what I think may be a winner-
Elgato Game Capture HD60
H264 up to 40Mbps recording in many resolutions,
USB2 into Laptop (which also powers the unit)
HDMI out if I still want my external monitor on camera
$163 :)
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Old January 6th, 2016, 09:44 AM   #8
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

Yes someone mentioned this to me but I never followed it up. Might check it out myself!

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Old January 7th, 2016, 02:29 AM   #9
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

Gerald, I'd be cautious over those game capture devices. I looked into them about 18 months ago and read some very mixed reviews. Certainly some people had no issues, but many complained of drop outs, unsynched audio, freezing, and problems with the software you need to install on the pc to do the conversion and rendering.

I would be more inclined to look at something like the Atomos Ninja 2 (typical UK price under 250: Buy - Atomos Ninja2 10-bit HDMI to ProRes Recorder, Monitor and Playback Device (AO-ATOMNJA003)

This allows you to capture from hdmi onto (relatively) inexpensive 2.5" hard disks or SSDs. It comes with a USB3 docking caddy that allows you to pop the hard disk/SSD out of the Ninja and onto the caddy and either copy to the pc and edit or edit direct from the disk. If you have two disks you can be editing/copying one while recording on the other.

If you prefer the output from SDI then the Atomos Samurai is your best bet, although that comes in at around 415. Buy - Atomos Samurai Blade - Camera-Mounted Recorder, Monitor, WFM & Deck for HD-SDI Cameras (AO-ATOMSAM002).

The alternative is to use the Ninja with an Atomos Connect HDMI to SDI converter which gives you the best of both worlds. I use a Samurai with an Atomos Connect SDI to HDMI converter so I can use it with my DSLR and full size cameras.

Both include monitors (5" on the Samurai - not sure about the Ninja) with focusing, colour and exposure aids, so you're getting a lot more for your money!

I've used the Samurai for a couple of years and I could not be without it. I haven't actually used it in exactly the same way you are describing but I can't think of any reason why it wouldn't work. Of course you're also getting a device that you can throw on top of your camera on ANY shoot.

Actually, the only drawback I can see with this solution (other than the price, perhaps) is that you will need to record to Avid DNxHD which might not work for you. Personally I haven't ever experienced problems with this format - in fact I think it's superb - but you will need to install Quicktime for the codecs. Others have reported problems when trying to work with hundreds of clips ona Vegas timeline, but I haven't seen this so I guess it's a memory issue (wild stab there!).

I would certainly recommend an Atomos solution over and above one of the gaming capture devices, especially if this is work for a client or requires a reliable guarantee of capture.

Cheers!

Last edited by Ian Stark; January 7th, 2016 at 05:59 AM.
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Old January 7th, 2016, 05:08 PM   #10
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

Ha! Too late, ordered yesterday morning. lol.
Thanks Ian :)
Now Im nervous.
Still, if its a fail, it just goes back on ebay and its a $30-$40 learning experience.

I looked at the Samurai previously and would have loved it, but at 3.5 times the price of the Elgato, and SSD or HDD..... plus the fact that it records to the better codecs (which is great), but they just take up too much space for this kind of repetitive work.

Not really concerned about reliability as I will record on cam as well just in case until it proves itself.

I figure if I test at home first shooting the windy bushes in yard, (these are a great codec test for my GH2's when hacked).
So Camera to Elgato via HDMI, Elgato to Macbook via usb2, Macbook to Lacey HDD via Thunderbolt, Burn files to external DVD drive via usb3.
What can go wrong :)

Will report on how it goes.

Cheers for all the feedback.
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Old January 9th, 2016, 03:09 AM   #11
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Re: External recorder connected to PC?

If it works it works :-). Like I say, I also read a load of positive reports, so fingers crossed!
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