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Non-Linear Editing on the PC
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Old July 23rd, 2006, 09:47 PM   #1
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Archive Compression Format

I have a bunch of footage that I've been shooting for the last couple of months and while I probably won't do much (if anything) with it, there is some good stuff. Unfortunately, I have like 100GB of my drive wrapped up with it and I want to free up some space.
I could buy more 250GB HDD's. Eventually, I could get an external raid tower and e-sata them all together.
I could rar them up and burn them to dvd.
I could just delete them, keep the tapes, and buy more and more tapes.
Finally, and this seems to be my preference, I could use some video codec and compress them. I'd want something that will still be useable for editing, but not take up 12GB/hour. Is this reasonable? I know you can run mpeg4 at 1GB/hour with good results, but I'm not sure what it would be like uncompressed and edited. I know mpeg2 is right out so maybe mpeg4 isn't a good idea. Has anyone worked with .wmv/.mov/etc... for this purpose? I like the codec idea as I can just go back and preview anything, at any time. If I rar, then I have to uncompress just to realize that it's not what I want.
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Old July 24th, 2006, 08:59 AM   #2
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Here's what I would do: I would download the tape to my PC, then save a low res copy of each file and erase the original DV-AVI footage off the computer but keep the original tape in full quality (if you think you will need the footage later, there's NO COMPRESSION that will let you have 100% of the original quality back).

If later on reviewing the low res copy (your choice of mpeg, wmv, qt, real) I realize I need a clip, or the whole tape, simply re-import it.

After all, a tape only costs a few dollars, but there's no replacement for a lost memory...
Ervin Farkas
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Old July 24th, 2006, 09:12 AM   #3
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I agree with Ervin, but I would also try to archive all the rest of the projects to cd or something. Video is usually only a percentage of any project. You also have fonts used for titles, still images, audio from a different source... all stuff that might be impossible to replace later. That is, if they are projects. If you are just shooting footage, keep the tape. Just keep in mind, the more you use a tape, the more it stretches, the magnetic coating flakes off, and soon you will have drop outs and other issues.
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Old June 20th, 2009, 06:12 PM   #4
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I agree with most of the above, though one caveat- I had a similar problem, boxes of tapes, aging and not needed imminently, though maybe someday. Lossless archiving is possible.

It can be disconcerting to try and get an identical log and capture. Yeah, yeah, I know, but things happen and arguing hypotheticals won't speed up real time in a log and capture. Or correct the horrible drop out in the tape. And media assets being different freaks out a NLE, especially if filters and effects were employed to clips. Optical is the only currently viable archiving medium. Lossless archiving does exist.

While probably true that there is no lossless video codec, there are lossless archiving compression schemes, many with excellent segmenting features. If you don't mind some reconstruction of files, they archive beautifully- and written to optical with other assets, EDLs, etc., they make a nice library set when something really needs to be resurrected. and keep that low res version for quick view.

which? I have my favorites, but these guys know what they're talking about:

Maximum Compression (lossless data compression software)
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Old June 21st, 2009, 08:49 AM   #5
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A.D. - Perhaps you didn't notice this thread is almost 3 years old? Hopefully the OP found a solution by now.

Btw, there are lots of lossless video codecs, like Lagarith for example (but of course it doesn't make any sense to transcode captured DV files with a lossless codec for archiving).
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