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Old February 8th, 2006, 12:43 AM   #1
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Hi gang...

I've just returned from the Moviola event, which was fun and informative... and revealed a potential large problem for some (potential) HVX users...

A number of the presenters and others present have recommended that P2 cards should NEVER be imported into Final Cut Pro on a G4-based system; there is a very clear and problematic loss of quality in the process of re-wrapping footage as Quicktime footage. The same problem does not occur on G5-based systems. Footage imported to FCP on a G5 will work fine when transferred on a G4; only the transcoding process is problematic.

As a corollary, I asked if the same problem would occur if capturing directly to FCP using a G4 laptop (since the footage must be wrapped as quicktime in that process also, though from a DVCPRro stream rather than MXF). Noone had tested this.

I know that many of us are planning on capturing in exactly this manner (directly to a Powerbook G4); in fact, there's currently no other viable solution for long-format field recording (at least in the smaller-budget/battery-powered range). Certainly many folks here have announced their intention to shoot that way.

Some people suggested that these findings were determined with a pre-release version of Apple software, and that the issues may well have been fixed.

Can anyone with a camera and a Powerbook and the latest FCP test to see if direct capture ("Capture Now") works well?

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Old February 8th, 2006, 01:15 AM   #2
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I'm a PC person so maybe I'm way out of line here but that sounds mighty odd to me. The P2 cards are a PCMCIA memory device, they show up in any PC (Mac or IBM) as just a bunch of files and you copy those files to another device, nothing should happen to the data on them in the process, this is only as OS level function, FCP shouldn't be getting into the act at all.

Of course when you go to ingest them into an NLE things could be different but why would you be doing that in the field.
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Old February 8th, 2006, 01:28 AM   #3
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Sorry, Bob, but that's not what I'm asking...
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Old February 8th, 2006, 06:43 AM   #4
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Barry's topic is a new one which I've split out from Peter Jefferson's "HVX Longform" thread.

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Old February 8th, 2006, 08:44 AM   #5
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I can say from my 4 days of testing that in point of fact I've seen no issues whatsoever capturing to the G4 laptop. In fact today we are testing audio setups - the difference between using a lav and a boom mic in the studio captured on the HVX. Those tests will also be direct captured to the PB since I don't own any P2 at this point.

Barry Green mentioned that someone (don't remember the name) actually shot an entire commercial (Pro Flowers? Help me out here Barry) using this exact setup.

I think what should be clarified is that older G4's may in fact have issues with HD footage of any type especially if they are running FCP 4.5. There have been a wealth of issues that cropped up with that system combination that was addressed in the release of FCP 5.

Barry W: - What I can do is, if you can find out the exact setup that is being referred to i.e. which model G4, which version of FCP, I can do some data mining and tell you if in fact those reports are coming from system configurations with known issues. That might clarify what you've been told.

From all the info I have the last version G4 running FCP 5 should have no issues other than speed and, as mentioned before the latest G4 PB has no problems with compressed HD or even HDV.
Robert Lane
Producer/Creator - Bike Pilots TV
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Old February 8th, 2006, 07:12 PM   #6
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I should have been clearer in my original post that they were using a pre-release version of Apple HVX support, and were only testing importing from MXF, not direct capture. So, from what you've said Robert, it seems pretty clearly NOT to be an issue. Don't know if it was 4.5 vs. 5, or buggy pre-release software, or something related to MXF import but not direct capture... but in any case, by all reports it would've been obvious if it was happening. So... no worries, it seems.

Thank you Robert for testing and reporting! I feel at ease, and hope everyone else does, too.
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