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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PXW-Z280, Z190, X180 etc. (going back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.

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Old December 22nd, 2007, 03:45 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by Bob Grant View Post
Of course they may just mean for the deliverables and yet further on in the document they exclude submission on HDCAM SR, probably because they don't have the VCRs to play it out. More likely the document is out of date, our national broadcaster has settled on SR as their standard HD format and they're very close to the BBC.
I think you are correct on both counts. CBS, in the USA, has accepted both D-5 and SR. However, the reasons go beyond minimal data compression as both offer multiple-track audio. A pair of tracks can be used for a PCM stereo mix and another pair for Dolby EX (?) encoded 5.1.

Post-post, there will be no difference between something shot in XDCAM HD and XDCAM EX. Or, HDCAM and EX. The codec in the "delivery" VTR used for recording will be what has the data rate spec. Your NLE will pass it a 1920x1080 uncompressed 4:2:2 (downsampled from 4:4:4 YUV) signal.

As far as the "NLE codec" -- there can be a conceptual problem here. If, for example, you shoot HDV (or XDCAM HD/EX) and use FCP -- but not Color -- there will be NO NLE ENCODING codec. The encoding codec used will be the camera codec. FCP will only decode the camera codec.

This is why, with FCP, there is NO need to use an Intermediate codec. In fact, there is every reason to avoid using an intermediate codec. Stay NATIVE! Edit natively and the only two encoding codecs used in a production will be the camera's and the delivery VTR's codecs -- both of which are hardware. So, you only need to be sure both codecs are "accepted."

There is no NLE codec as everything done in FCP is done in uncompressed 4:4:4 YUV. The same is true of Avid MC and Xpress -- if before export, you delete all "pre-computes."

Of course, if you use AE for composits and if you use Color, you face a problem. Using Avid MC is better than using FCP+Color because NO transfer codec is used with MC -- while MC offers much of what Color can do. That's one thing I like about MC.

If you do use Color, choosing ProRes 422 HQ at 220Mbps "should" be legal.

Likewise, by exporting Timeline segments from FCP to AE using ProRes 422 HQ and using ProRes to bring composited segments back to FCP -- you can still acquire and edit natively. There's no need to convert HDV or XDCAM HD/EX "to" anything.

PS: do not believe what you read about long GOP being "harder" to edit. Even on a MacBook Pro one can -- with an external RAID -- edit 9 streams of MPEG-2. And, don't believe the BS about long GOP taking "longer to render." With FCP you need NEVER to render to long GOP MPEG-2. Those who talk about "rendering long GOP" are NOT using the new render option provided by FCP 6.
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Last edited by Steve Mullen; December 22nd, 2007 at 04:31 AM.
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Old December 22nd, 2007, 04:59 PM   #47
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What was the Question?

If you want my opinion, I say EX1. 1/2" over 1/3" CMOS = better low light, more shallow DoF. The lens on the EX1 is plenty versatile enough for weddings. The interchangeable lens options on the Z7 really don't matter too much. But then again, if I can't put zeiss digiprimes on that bad boy, I really don't care anyway. Okay... so I'm biased ;)

You gotta admit... 35Mb at 1920x1080 progressive without that evil pulldown is a big plus. Just make sure you can offload that footage while you're there. I'd hate for you to run out of space and miss one of those important moments.
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Old December 23rd, 2007, 12:27 PM   #48
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re What was the question?

Hey Guys,

Great stuff, excellent. The question was, is the XDCAM EX an acceptable "format" for:

Nat Geo

and others?

We recently did a current affairs piece for AJI that was shot in HDV and mastered to HDCAM. We were very careful to callibrate our NLE (Premiere Pro 2 at the time) to broadcast specs and it went fine. But as we all know, some broadcasters say ok, others say no, and there's always the don't ask don't tell but I'd prefer to know straight up :)

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Old January 6th, 2008, 07:19 AM   #49
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Well, after some more consideration....I'm going to go with the EX1 track. I've worked out some options with workflow, offloading on field, and also backing up later on.

Thanks everyone for your help. Now I just need to put the order in and hopefully will get it before the end of January!
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