Can't recover media
I have three cards (out of thirteen) from a shoot this past weekend that I can't access at all.
We're using Ultra II SD cards in an adapter, shooting at 30p.
So, the cards don't show up at all in any card readers - they not only fail to mount, they aren't seen at all by the system (Mac OS 10.5)
When I put the cards into either of our EX-1s, the camera says that the media needs to be recovered, but doesn't provide the option of recovering it. The write protect switch is not on when I do this.
We're going to try reading the cards on a DOS based machine.
Has anyone experienced and had success recovering the footage? Any ideas as to what causes this to happen?
Thanks in advance.
One of our forum leaders that uses Macs had to recover files from an SDHC card by using a friend's windows-based file salvage program. It might have been a SanDisk program (which is Windows only) but I'm not sure. I think he was initially not able to get his problem card to appear on the desktop with the EX card adapter and the Macbook Pro's Express 34 slot but when he put the SDHC card into a USB reader it did subsequently appear on his Mac's desktop. I think.
There's also this program for Macs:
I really am puzzled by the constant worries people are having after using non Sony S x S cards in the EX cameras. Surely, if you're spending thousands on these great cameras and presumably shooting important and valuable material it makes sense to at least make absolutely sure (even then with some doubts!) that you can access the media. That means using the cards that Sony developed for the camera. OK they're more expensive, so?
I do agree with you. Why take a chance with generic cards? I am presently shooting a documentary that has taken me to major cities all over the country. Losing footage would be devastating. If I want to gamble, I go to Las Vegas.
These forums never cease to amaze me. People are doing their life's work, yet they pinch pennies here and there. What is the cheapest mic? What is the cheapest card? What is the cheapest camera? For the life of me, I cannot understand all of this penny pinching when it comes to one's vocation & career.
[Brian Barkley] "yet they pinch pennies"
SxS workflow introduce more points of failure
Use of laptop during a shoot
offloading during a shoot
deleting and/or formating a card during a shoot.
having to make a copy by end of shoot if client needs to leave with material.
[Brian Barkley] "Why take a chance with generic cards?"
Transcend is not a generic card (nor is Sandisk, who also make the SxS cards).
Tested SDHC are quite reliable. In most cases I believe it is operator error and not the cards or the lack of proper testing. Certainly Hoodman charges for taking on that QC themselves.
Pre SDHC, I saw similar issues about SxS cards.
"These forums never cease to amaze me. People are doing their life's work, yet they pinch pennies here and there. What is the cheapest mic? What is the cheapest card? What is the cheapest camera? For the life of me, I cannot understand all of this penny pinching when it comes to one's vocation & career. "
This forum has a wealth of knowledgeable and talented people helping others every day.
When the MxR/SDHC alternative solution became available my first thought was why wouldn't it work, and it didn't cost much to try a few so I did, and with hours of testing I found that human error was a lot easier to make. I bet it would be a good practice to wait 20 seconds after the recording for the green light to come on then power down the camera before removing the adapter/SDHC card similar to the RED for reloads.
The SxS card uses the Express bus technology and Sony opened the door to USB recording technology when they released an external hard drive accessory and that was when curious people began this process. The EX camera records to the SxS cards much faster than the SDHC cards and what many people still don't realize is that the camera is still recording to these SDHC cards for up to 10 seconds after they have pushed the stop button and if they pull the card out to soon it will destroy all the data on the card. No thinking required with SxS cards, much higher percentage of human error possible with SDHC cards, the tally light goes off and the slot record light is still Red for up to 10 seconds.
I'm sure this isn't everyones issue but people don't search back to find answers and information like they should, most people jump right on and ask the same questions over and over again.
I rely on my own testing and from the other leaders here to find solutions from first hand experiences. I think many people try things because of products like the EX1 CAMERA that delivers an unbelievable HD broadcast quality image for such an affordable price. I think many believe the market is being fouled and misguided.
My point is yes "what is the cheapest product" that equals the so called standard. The standard changed because it is easier to sell $8000 cameras with $800 SxS cards than $40,000 cameras (without a lens,). But this makes people curious again because this same Sony mpeg-2 encoder is now licensed to JVC and used inside their new cameras and they don't require these expensive SxS cards to record the same mpeg-2 35Mbps file type, they are designed with SDHC cards and record the same file that has a slightly different file wrapper because Sony would never pay to license the use of Quicktime from Apple.
I agree about penny pinching on what SDHC card to purchase now that I know from my own experience to only trust the major brands. In fact if I needed anymore cards I would only buy Transcend at this point.
The message from this board has always been it is possible to use the MxR/SDHC alternative but read up and know what you are getting into and TEST TEST TEST to feel comfortable.
I can't stress enough Michael's point about pulling the SDHC cards too soon. The "finalization" of the record (TOC, etc) takes longer than SxS.
This is one reason why I like 32GB SDHC cards. Put two inside and you're set for nearly 4 hours. Eliminate (or at least reduce) the need to pull the card and reduce the human error issue. Granted one may need 16GB cards to hand off to clients but there's no room for that at all with SxS cards.
As I mention in my post above. SDHC, with proper SDHC (not SxS) mindset can reduce human error. Key is understanding how SDHC works differently than SxS and setup the appropriate workflow with foreknowledge.
Applause for Michael for the detail.
Thanks for posting this, Michael.
I never felt qualified to comment on the SDHC alternative like you just did because I don't use them. For example, I knew there was a recording lag time with SDHC before the slot light went from red to green but I didn't realize that it was ten seconds. That's a lot. No wonder folks are having issues with missing media if they're yanking the cards before recording is finished.
What you have written should be required reading for all owners of EX cameras using SDHC media, almost like a FAQ at the top of the page.
I'm finding it's about 6 seconds but it probably depends on the card.
I gave his post rating, solution, kudos with the hope that folks will see the importance.
What Craig and I have found was the name brand cards only need about 4-6 seconds to finished recording and the cheaper cards take up to 10 seconds or don't work at all. This lag time is an indicator on weather the card is really fast enough IMO.
In any event this is one area where that seems to be overlooked and/or unknown to the user of the MxR/SDHC.
Oh and Don please email me your schedule for the film you are working on and I'll do my best to get you a Flash XDR or Nano to work with.
[Michael Palmer] "What Craig and I have found was the name brand cards only need about 4-6 seconds to finished recording and the cheaper cards take up to 10 seconds or don't work "
Yeap, I new that no hurry to taking the card out, but I wasn't aware of such long time needed.
Thanks for refreshing the data.
Whenever i can, I switch the camera off to change cards and I don't let clips span.
[Michael Palmer] "please email me your schedule for the film you are working on and I'll do my best to get you a Flash XDR or Nano to work with. "
Thanks, Michael. I'm very grateful to you for your generous offer. As soon as I know more about the shooting schedule I'll be in touch.
Thanks for this very helpful response - I'm in post-production so I have very little control over what gets handed to me, but I'm going to stress from now on that people wait at least ten seconds before pulling cards.
In this case however, the card was archiving a live feed, and according to the person overseeing it, the device stopped recording when it switched to that card. Then she started it again and it stopped - so something else happened here, who knows what. I know all the cards were formatted and tested before they started...
Fortunately I was misinformed about the other two cards; they only needed to be recovered and we have everything from those.
We're going to be using Sandisk Extreme III cards exclusively from now on in any case.
You mentioned that they were Ultra II. Where they Class 2 or Class 4? I have Class 2 which I bought in January and work like a champ. On the other hand the newer Class 4s seem to be the problem. Many people are reporting issues with them. I wouldn't be surprised if they were Class 4 but could you confirm that?
I haven't heard much recently about the Extremes. I think most people just moved to Transcend Class 6 which, from all accounts, are reliable. If you're getting in to the Extreme price range than that's the point to look a Hoodman. Either that or try Transcend.
I used the method that Rafael Amador recommended here:
It seems to work for all but the most recent 3-4 clips...so it wasn't a complete recovery in my case...but far superior to losing the card's entire payload.
As I wrote in the thread pointed by Tim, open the Disk Utility and see if the SxS card shows up.
If it shows up, even if is grayed, you can mount it and copy the MP4 from the card.
Then use the SONY Clip Browser.
If you can't get it this way post back.
PS: I agree with Mark and with Craig.
We only need SDHC card that we an rely on.
Don my friend,
Thanks for that savior link.
I've been using DataRescue II to recover the MP4 from my death SDHC.
I thought that would work to in the SxS cards, but don't.
DataRescue it can not even see the card in the Xpress slot.
It can scan it by USB, but even like that is not able to discover any file in the card.
This with a card in perfect use and full of media.
But I've run the "FileSalvage" everything shows up even the deleted files.
PS: I run it in Demo mode. I'm trying to buy the application, but PayPal&Co don't let me do it.
It seems that they see risky any shopping coming coming from this corner of the world.
Please add your camera info to the link