FORUMS: list search recent posts

help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot

COW Forums : Sony XDCAM - EX & Related

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
irene litapop
help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 3:50:24 am

so i just bought a brand new macbook pro... i had a macbook that i was prefectly happy with, but am starting to shoot a project with the ex-1 and figured i would need a macbook pro to be able to easily read my sxs cards.

i guess i was an idiot, because unbeknownst to me, mac has removed this slot from their 15" machines. what should i do??? do i need to return this laptop and get a 17"? i really don't want anything that huge (i seriously miss my old 12" ibook and hate having a large clunky laptop. i already have a tower with cinema display, and my laptop is for portability and using in the field). not to mention i just spent a whole day setting up this laptop and really don't have the energy to start again.

is there some sort of card reader or adapter i can get? i can't believe i've screwed up so royally... getting this new computer for the one thing it can no longer do at all. and i can't believe apple would remove this feature!



Return to posts index

Craig Seeman
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 4:23:09 am

Currently only the 17" MacBookPro has the Express card slot. From what I understand the current models now have Snow Leopard which doesn't work with SxS cards until Sony updates the drivers (and that may be months away!). There may be a MacBookPro that still has Leopard on it.

Sony has an SxS to USB card reader but it's not bus powered. So if you need to be on batteries that would still be a problem.

Of course if you shot with MxR, MxM, Hoodman SDHC adaptor, your new 15" MacBookPro has SDHC card slot built in.

BTW I'm sympathetic because I'd really want a 13" with Express slot. Luckily I got a 15" last year.

Apple and Sony have really backed EX SxS users into a real corner.



Return to posts index

irene litapop
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 5:22:52 am

so... even a 17 inch laptop is no good because of the new OS? wtf?

so can you help me figure out my options?

how good is the sony usb thing? it seems pretty expensive for what it is. is it slower than putting the card in the slot? does it work well? the fact that you have to plug it in seems like a big minus for quick offloading in the field.

and what's the story with mxr and mxm things? do they work well? i'm nervous about using a 3rd party system like that for shooting... and it seems complicated and jerry rigged that it's a card within another card. i'm reading that some of them stick in the camera and are hard to eject, and they don't overcrank. all of this seems like trouble as well.

thoughts? am i just in a complete bind? what to do? i am so so annoyed about all of this!


also -- i see online lots of other express card to USB reader things. is there some reason the sony that needs to be plugged in is recommended above the others?


Return to posts index


Craig Seeman
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 5:46:12 am

[irene litapop] "so... even a 17 inch laptop is no good because of the new OS? wtf? "
Sony will fix this eventually but eventually looks like a long way off when you've got day to day work to do. And 17" is too big for me to consider "portable."





[irene litapop] "how good is the sony usb thing? it seems pretty expensive for what it is. is it slower than putting the card in the slot? does it work well? the fact that you have to plug it in seems like a big minus for quick offloading in the field.
"


It works well enough. Keep in mind there's no competition for SxS PCIe card readers. Most Express card readers only handle a USB variant of the card (has to do with internals and not the connector so don't get confused by PCIe and USB).

[irene litapop] "and what's the story with mxr and mxm things? do they work well? i'm nervous about using a 3rd party system like that for shooting... and it seems complicated and jerry rigged that it's a card within another card. i'm reading that some of them stick in the camera and are hard to eject, and they don't overcrank. all of this seems like trouble as well. "

The proper adaptors work fine and don't stick. The trick is finding cards that work reliably. You need to test. It used to be Sandisk but more recently Transcend cards have been better. I've seen some other brands which work well too. They don't have the overhead to overcrank reliably though. I've been using this method since January and NEVER had an issue. I did a good card test first though before they went into service. It's a great savings. Two 32GB cards and I'm good for 4 hours.

[irene litapop] "thoughts? am i just in a complete bind? what to do? i am so so annoyed about all of this! "

As are many other people. Apple and Sony combined have really pulled a MAJOR BONEHEAD! It seems almost as if it's collusion to kill SxS.

Each solution currently will give you some headache. It's not too difficult to come up with reliable SDHC cards and there's lots of benefits with that including direct compatibility with your new laptop. But no overcranking. and some testing is required. If you can get a 17" with Leopard you'd be OK for SxS and the MxR type cards will work in the slot too. Note the MxR type cards will work with Snow Leopard too. It's only SxS that fails. You could hunt for a used or refurbished 15" MacBook Pro.

Personally I don't blame you if you called by Apple and Sony and screamed at the top of your longs at their stupidity. It's just a plain bad situation with two companies not thinking about supporting professional users.





Return to posts index

Enrique Orozco
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 1:12:41 pm

I'm in PC land, but in the meantime, have you tried connecting your camera to your laptop with the USB cable as an alternate option ??

I have a pair of SHDC Sandisk / MxR combo and NEVER have problems.... when I use my 2 SxS cards (used for overcranking) I just connect the camera to my system by USB....


good luck

Enrique Orozco R.
http://www.dvideostudio.com >iDEA DigitalVideoStudio


Return to posts index

Bob Pierce
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 2:15:46 pm

Of course you can still use the camera and its usb cable to copy your media off of the sxs cards. From what I understand, XDCAM transfer works OK for this under Snow Leopard, though I haven't tested this yet myself. Has anyone else out there done so?
Bob Pierce

http://www.lightstreamassociates.com

Mac Pro 2.66 - 8GB memory - Mac OS 10.5.5 - Quicktime 7.5.5 -
Mac Book Pro 2.33 Duo -
FC Studio 2 (Final Cut 6.0.4) - Kona Lhe
Adobe Production Suite CS3 -
Sony Multiformat 14" - Panasonic 42" Plasma -
Ikegami HLDV7 - PVW EX-1



Return to posts index


Craig Seeman
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 2:41:44 pm

[Bob Pierce] "Of course you can still use the camera and its usb cable to copy your media off of the sxs cards."
Not really a viable solution in the field which is where people are using their laptops. Not only is it awkward but it's slower than using the slot. One advantage SxS had over P2 was the built in slot compatibility and speedy transfer speeds. That's gone on both counts now.

[Bob Pierce] "From what I understand, XDCAM transfer works OK for this under Snow Leopard, though I haven't tested this yet myself. Has anyone else out there done so? "

Bob, look down a bit on the forum. I have a thread specifically about that. A lot of people, including me, are having thumbnail cache issues with XDCAM Transfer which further slows things down. Sony hasn't offered any info on what the conflict is given it doesn't effect everyone.

Apple offers only a 17" MacBookPro with Express slot which is known not to work with SxS now. Everyone is facing a crap shoot as to whether XDCAM Transfer is viable as well. Sony's response is months to fix this.




Return to posts index

Craig Seeman
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 2:30:46 pm

Enrique, you bring up some points of note. If you're using SDHC there is no Express slot issue for any of the Mac laptops even with Snow Leopard.

The one issue would be if you use SxS for overcranking and need to be on battery power so the Sony SxS to USB would not be viable.

It'll be interesting to see what happens with Windows 7. I assume since the RC has been out that Sony has tested it. Of course, as a developer, Sony would have had Snow Leopard for some months too.

I give Sony three thumbs down for not handling this issue though.

One, If they knew there were issues with Snow Leopard they could have posted a "not yet certified for Snow Leopard compatibility" and listed the issues on their site . . . which would be an obvious place for proactive professionals to check before upgrading.

Two because they claim they won't have a fix for months whereas other developers great and small either had their drivers ready or will do so within days to a few weeks at most.

Three because this means all new Mac laptops coming with Snow Leopard are dead in the water as far as SxS use. Between Apple and Sony there's now only 17" MacBookPro with Express slot and it won't work with SxS for many months.

Whether deliberate or just poor decisions, it seems like they've pretty much killed SxS support. In the fast changing "pro" world months may as well be years because next spring will be another NAB and a round of new products with SDHC support. If Sony is truly killing SxS (or deprecating) they should improve SDHC support concurrently and they haven't.

While I hear P2 issues exist with Snow Leopard as well, it'll be interesting to see how quickly Panasonic gets their fix out. It's also obvious that Panasonic is building cameras that support SDHC though too.

While I really like the XDCAM EX "ecosystem" and chose it for good reasons over P2, DVCProHD, AVC, I'm really disheartened by Sony's handling of this and apparent lack of urgency to fix these issues.



Return to posts index

irene litapop
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 5:07:44 pm

yeah, using the camera is not a viable solution for working in the field / shooting documentary. don't want to have my camera out of commission every time i need to offload footage.

so... i really don't want a 17" computer. it makes me mad to pay $200 more for a computer i don't want (whose only "benefit" is being unwieldy, large, heavy, and too big for the 15" laptop bag i just ordered).

here are a few more questions then. how much slower is to offload the sxs cards using a USB reader? and what's the deal with that $270 sony sxs card USB reader? why does it cost so much? can i use one of those cheaper smaller USB express card readers instead? it seems like there's lots of small express card readers on amazon that are bus-powered -- would those not work? i don't like that the sony one needs to plugged in (this also seems like a PITA in the field -- i want portable and easy to dump card onto laptop. if it takes a slightly longer time that's not a dealbreaker, but i want a smooth and streamlined workflow).

and... if i buy those mxr cards, then the deal is i can take out the sd card from the adapter and plug that directly into my laptop's slot?





Return to posts index


Craig Seeman
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 5:50:09 pm

[irene litapop] "so... i really don't want a 17" computer. it makes me mad to pay $200 more for a computer i don't want (whose only "benefit" is being unwieldy, large, heavy, and too big for the 15" laptop bag i just ordered). "

... And wont work with SxS anyway if it comes with Snow Leopard installed.

[irene litapop] "here are a few more questions then. how much slower is to offload the sxs cards using a USB reader?"

It seems about 50% slower (half the speed) for me.

[irene litapop] "and what's the deal with that $270 sony sxs card USB reader? why does it cost so much?"

It reads SxS (PCIe) cards whereas most readers only handle Express USB cards. MacBookPro slots can read both.

[irene litapop] "can i use one of those cheaper smaller USB express card readers instead?"
No, see above. Different technology in the cards they read. They won't read SxS cards. If someone tested one that worked I suspect it would be touted on this and other forums and/or someone like e-Flims (MxR) would be making and selling them like hotcakes.

[irene litapop] " don't like that the sony one needs to plugged in (this also seems like a PITA in the field "
Yes, defeats the purpose of portability.

[irene litapop] "and... if i buy those mxr cards, then the deal is i can take out the sd card from the adapter and plug that directly into my laptop's slot? "

You got it. MxR SDHC and you could even use that with a new 13" MacBookPro with its SDHC slot.

That's why I half jokingly say Sony and Apple are in collusion to kill SxS. If you get a new laptop which now come with Snow Leopard, SDHC is easier. Both 13" and 15" include it. If you upgraded your older Express slot laptop to Snow Leopard that should work fine with the MxR in the Express slot (It's only the SxS PCIe compatibility that's broken).

Of course the fact that Apple drops Express slot for 15" and adds SDHC to both 13" and 15" and then Sony proclaims "months" for a driver update which either locks people into Leopard or forces one to consider MxR SDHC for Express slots or SDHC direct on newer models, is all just a coincidence.

Hmm, coincidence or "controlled demolition" of SxS? Sounds like we should create an "SxS Truther" movement.





Return to posts index

irene litapop
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 6:10:29 pm

ok. another round of questions (this is all sooo annoying!)

the hoodman adapters say that you should only use their proprietary sdhc cards. is this true? or can i buy a transcend card and use it with the hoodman? just curious.

is this the kind of card i need for inside the adpater -- http://www.tapeonline.com/products/transcend-sd-secure-digital-sdhc-16gb-cl...

and then i get the hoodman thing or the mxr adapter?

it kind of sounds like that sony reader isn't so much better than just hooking up the camera with a USB cable. for almost $300 it doesn't sound like a very big help.






Return to posts index

Craig Seeman
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 2, 2009 at 6:22:37 pm

[irene litapop] "the hoodman adapters say that you should only use their proprietary sdhc cards. is this true? or can i buy a transcend card and use it with the hoodman? just curious. "

Not true and I'm not sure if they're really saying that. Their adaptor is the MxM card with their label on it. They recommend their SDHC cards at double the price because you're paying for QC and tighter specs on the SDHC cards they have manufactured for them.

Buy Transcend Class 6 and test with full duration non stop record end to end.

[irene litapop] "t kind of sounds like that sony reader isn't so much better than just hooking up the camera with a USB cable. for almost $300 it doesn't sound like a very big help. "

It's a big help for desktop use. I don't want to keep dangling the camera to use as a file exporter. If the camera "falls off the table" once one might evaluate which is less expensive. And what if someone needs to go out and shoot some more while another needs to export.

Of course if you're using SDHC the Sony reader doesn't serve a purpose with that.





Return to posts index


Brent Critchfield
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 3, 2009 at 2:31:08 am

I'm sensing that prices for used, early 2008 15" MacBook Pros are about to skyrocket.


Return to posts index

Craig Seeman
Re: help -- i just bought a 15" macbook pro with no express card slot
on Sep 3, 2009 at 3:08:47 am

[Brent Critchfield] "I'm sensing that prices for used, early 2008 15" MacBook Pros are about to skyrocket."

As long as they're still on Leopard.



Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]