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Rodrigo Silvestri
XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 2:41:09 am

Hi everyone.
I didn't want to reach this stage (of writing a post about it) but I didn't find any solution yet.

Software:
XDCAM EX Clip Browser 2.6.0
XDCAM Transfer 2.9.0
Final Cut Pro 7.0.3

Big Question:
Is there any other way of rewrapping XDCAM EX .mp4 files to .mov similarly to the way XDCAM Transfer / FCP Log and Transfer tools do, but without needing the folder structure?

Situation: Short film. 3 shooting days. Already edited, need to preserve the TC.

Day 1 was copied from SxS to drive with the complete folder structure. XDCAM Transfer loads clips and shows this error "The clip thumbnail could not be saved to the cache as it was an unrecognised format", but imports the clips. As this error prevents the batch from completing (and I'd need to do it clip by clip), I tried Log and Transfer from FCP. Worked perfectly. No further issues with this folder.

Days 2 and 3: They only copied the clips folders. I don't have the complete structure/files. No files missing inside each clip folder, only the XMLs that would be inside BPAV are not there (because there is no BPAV, just DAY2/originalfolderperclip/files).
XDCAM Transfer / Log and Transfer don't recognize the clips (tried selecting folder, clip, or even creating BPAV/CLPR folders).

I recreated the folder structure and used XDCAM EX Clip Browser to regenerate the XML files. (Created the BPAV and CLPR folders, put the clip folders inside CLPR, then open Clip Browser and browse to the folder, it automatically regenerates the missing files).
Then tried to open:
- XDCAM Transfer recognizes the clips, but as soon as they are loaded it shows this error "Failed to import movie from file at /Volumes/(...) (-50)". I was sure to avoid any naming/weird characters problem, even moved the BPAV to the root or other HDDs). This error appears constantly and makes the program work SLOW so I need to choose the "cancel all tasks" button and remove the folder from there. "Import" button shows this error "Exception opening XDCAM EX file (Condition Failure-Recognised meta Box)".
- Log and Transfer takes its minutes loading the clips, when it's done it shows the clip list (with thumbnails) for a second then crashes.
I also tried regenerating the XMLs from the Windows version of Clip Browser.

Some mentioned Importing the files to XDCAM Clip Browser, positioning the browser in the destination folder and using the File > Import function. I choose the clip, it takes some seconds to load (and shows the progress bar), then shows this error "Failed to import the clip. Clip name: 159_(...)".
It even creates the BPAV folder if you watch the destination folder in the Finder, but it disappears as soon as the error appears.

No clue on what to do next. I tried with older versions too (Transfer 2.12, Browser 2.5).

------ I can use Adobe Media Encoder to convert everything to ProRes but I'd prefer not recompress, and I don't have enough space for Uncompressed files.

Hope someone can help me herr ;)
Thanks!
Rodrigo Silvestri

--
Following the rules often gives perfect results without actually learning.
twitter.com/rsilves
http://www.rsilves.com


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Greg Ondera
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 3:37:28 pm

My goodness! This is not directed at solving this problem so much as to asking if you tried Calibrated Software http://www.calibratedsoftware.com/MP4EXImport_Mac.asp as an alternative to getting the footage without rewrapping?

Greg Ondera
http://www.Plexus.tv
http://www.SurgeonToday.org


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Craig Seeman
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 4:11:41 pm

Sigh, I can feel my fellow forum members cringing already. I held off answering this because I have tendency to be brutal and was thinking a kinder gentler person would respond.

The time to ask about seat belts is before the head on collision. There will be no pain killers administered with my assistance.


[Rodrigo Silvestri] "XDCAM Transfer 2.9.0"
[Rodrigo Silvestri] "Day 1 was copied from SxS to drive with the complete folder structure. XDCAM Transfer loads clips and shows this error "The clip thumbnail could not be saved to the cache as it was an unrecognised format""
[Rodrigo Silvestri] "I tried with older versions too (Transfer 2.12,"

By first grade I had learned that 12 was a higher number than 9. Had you used this version you'd averted the above issue.

Copying files should be done with ClipBrowser with CRC ON to verify the copy.

[Rodrigo Silvestri] "Days 2 and 3: They only copied the clips folders. I don't have the complete structure/files. No files missing inside each clip folder, only the XMLs that would be inside BPAV are not there (because there is no BPAV, just DAY2/originalfolderperclip/files)."

If you had shot with MiniDV or Betacam would you have smashed the cassette and torn out the tape? Why did you think Sony's camera created the BPAV folder? Did you think Sony designed the camera to create unnecessary files for you to toss? Sorry but I no longer buy "newbie" as an excuse. In late 2007, despite nearly 30 years experience in video, I too was a newbie to file based workflows. Common sense dictated that if the camera created the file equivalent of a cassette then I should save it.

You can import the orphaned MP4 files into ClipBrowser and create new BPAV folders which will function in XDCAM Transfer. You can also import the orphaned MP4 into XDCAM Transfer.

[Rodrigo Silvestri] "Some mentioned Importing the files to XDCAM Clip Browser, positioning the browser in the destination folder and using the File > Import function."

Import the MP4 only. You can create destination destination folder in the 2nd window lower left and drag the MP4s there. Within that folder will be the new BPAV.



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Rodrigo Silvestri
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 10:53:19 pm

I work as a DIT an already know all the things you told me. It happens that as I normally work in a professional environment, I knew about these problems but I wasn't ever in charge of resolving it.
I received this project after it was edited, to do the color grading and mastering.

Sony's version numbering is totally confusing. 2.12 would be next to 2.1 (2.10). They should have numbered it 2.01 and then the 2.12 would be correct to be considered the newest.

Another company that does this is Apple, with OSX, but their release info is somehow more accessible ;)

I did create a folder with Clip Browser. No way to drag the files inside the ClipBrowser windows. Please explain me how you'd do it ;)

XDCAM Transfer (2.12) opens the folder but shows 0 clips in it.

Thanks everyone!
Rodrigo

--
Following the rules often gives perfect results without actually learning.
twitter.com/rsilves
http://www.rsilves.com


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Craig Seeman
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 11:16:19 pm

[Rodrigo Silvestri] "I received this project after it was edited, to do the color grading and mastering."

You should certainly charge for any work that this creates for you and explain to your client that the DIT apparently did not know how to handle the files.

[Rodrigo Silvestri] "Sony's version numbering is totally confusing. 2.12 would be next to 2.1 (2.10). They should have numbered it 2.01 and then the 2.12 would be correct to be considered the newest."

... and if you open XDCAM ClipBrowser and select About XDCAM Clip Browser, the popup says Sony XDCAM ClipBrowser 2.6
Version 2.06.00

Ian are you listening? Do you see how much confusion the versioning creates?


[Rodrigo Silvestri] "I did create a folder with Clip Browser. No way to drag the files inside the ClipBrowser windows. Please explain me how you'd do it ;)"

In ClipBrowser
File>Import...
import the MP4
it will appear in the top left window.
In the bottom left window direct to the area you want to be in and click on the Folder icon (first icon on the top left of that window.
Name the folder and make sure it's selected
Drag your MP4 from the top window to the bottom

If you were to then look at the folder on your hard drive you would find it has created
MyFolder>BPAV>(all the stuff it needs)



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Ian Cook
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 4:38:45 pm

It sounds like the main issue is that your Mac is running Snow Leopard with an unsupported version of Transfer. The slow operation and thumbnail errors are to be expected with older versions and SL.

Also, 2.12 can read 'orphaned' mp4 files in a source folder. It's always better to rebuild in CB but if you need to import from just the .mp4 files 2.12 is capable of doing this. The Log and Transfer plug-in req's an intact BPAV.

So hopefully 2.12 will solve both issues. If I'm way off the mark here as far as what you're doing, let me know..

Ian Cook
Sony Broadcast and Professional Company


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Rodrigo Silvestri
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 10:58:50 pm

How can I do this with 2.12?
I haven't found a way yet. XDCam Transfer recognizes the folder but not the clips inside it.

Thank you.
Rodrigo.

--
Following the rules often gives perfect results without actually learning.
twitter.com/rsilves
http://www.rsilves.com


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Ian Cook
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 11:14:11 pm

The clips need to be on the root of the folder. If it's a folder you've already viewed as a source delete it from the list and add it again. If the clips still do not show up you'll need to use CB to file-->import them into a new BPAV.


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Rodrigo Silvestri
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 11:30:59 pm

Ian and Craig:

I already did those steps and explained what happens in my first post :(
It doens't surprise me that when I try again, the same happens.

Thank anyway.

--
Following the rules often gives perfect results without actually learning.
twitter.com/rsilves
http://www.rsilves.com


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Craig Seeman
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 11:45:43 pm

This part?

[Rodrigo Silvestri] "Some mentioned Importing the files to XDCAM Clip Browser, positioning the browser in the destination folder and using the File > Import function. I choose the clip, it takes some seconds to load (and shows the progress bar), then shows this error "Failed to import the clip. Clip name: 159_(...)".
It even creates the BPAV folder if you watch the destination folder in the Finder, but it disappears as soon as the error appears."


So it fails on import. UhOh, could it be a corrupted .MP4?
Get the backup BPAV folder and . . . oh right, the DIT destroyed the masters. Did they at least backup the incomplete folders someplace?

Next test. Download the current version of VLC
http://www.videolan.org/vlc/download-macosx.html
and see if it'll play the raw MP4. It's been the one reliable EX MP4 Player. It doesn't even need or use the component installed with FCP. If the file is playable VLC should play it.



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Ian Cook
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Apr 28, 2011 at 11:57:50 pm

If you are getting a 'Failed to Import the Clip' error on an EX .mp4 it usually means there is data missing (often from bad copies).

As a last resort, try downloading the Cinemon.mp4 trial. It's a plug-in that allows direct editing of EX .mp4s without having to rewrap. The trial version has no limitations (watermarks, limits on clip length etc). See if, with Cinemon installed, the clips play in FCP and/or QuickTime. If they do, you have until the trial period ends to transcode the files or purchase the software. If you get a beach ball or error when you try to bring these into FCP with Cinemon installed, there is definitely a problem with the source clip(s).

http://pro.sony.com/bbsc/ssr/cat-datastorage/resource.latest.bbsccms-assets...


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David Waters
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 2, 2011 at 8:34:01 pm

Rodrigo, I feel your pain. I'm an experienced shooter doing local and national television news, long form work, and commercials with about 16 years or so in the field. I say all that to set up for the fact, that I was shooting a national show, and copied all the data cards but one correctly. I only copied the CLPR folder. I have spent all day trying to recover the footage with time code. For now, the company that is editing has recovered it without time code. I'm testing another option now...


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Craig Seeman
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 2, 2011 at 10:11:38 pm

[David Waters] "I only copied the CLPR folder."

I can't understand that reasoning at all. My experience goes back a few decades. Never would I though of ripping a tape from a 3/4" cassette, betacam, DVCAM. If a camera encasing a file in something (BPAV in this case) I'd no reason to second guess the camera manufacture and discard something they implemented to encase the files.

All that "stuff" in the BPAV are important bits of metadata recorded with the file. Why would one think otherwise?



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Michael Palmer
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 2, 2011 at 10:39:33 pm

I hate this thread, it pains me to read it and know that there will be others who make these same stupid mistakes.

Good Luck
Michael Palmer


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Craig Seeman
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 2, 2011 at 10:46:51 pm

Sony needs to put a warning label on SXS cards.

I'm still waiting for someone to say they opened an XDCAM disc case and pulled the disc out and why can't their blu-ray drive read it?



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David Waters
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 2, 2011 at 10:44:33 pm

Craig,

I work in the XDCam format on a daily basis for projects for Discovery Channel, Science Channel, PBS Newshour, and other national shows. I made an error with one folder.

You cannot reasonably compare this to tape, and here is why.
Between shoots that wrap at 10pm and start at 5am, there are 7 hours.
In that 7 hours, you have to take these steps:

-Copy off individual data cards from multiple cameras used, including some in other formats
-Standby in front of the computer screen for an hour watching a taskbar move sometimes to make sure the process isn't interrupted.
-Make a second copy
-Spot check a couple shots if you have a chance.

That said, because of these extensive checks required, you are opening the files in list form. That is literally several thousand opened clips a night. You don't go back through and uncheck the hundred or so clips you spot checked. So now, the BPAV folder is wide open, with CLPR folder wide open. You are copying every BPAV folder over.

What happens is clear - operator error. You highlight a lower folder accidentally.

We are dealing with several thousand files, not one single 3/4" tape. That would be easy to make sure the case doesn't get damaged or ripped. It's all packed inside the cassette, and no photog has to take 100 to 200 tapes apart overnight to spot check them, then put them back together. Apples and oranges my friend. I'd much rather be shooting on 3/4" some days.

Until the card speed increases, the copy time goes down, the price goes down, the media management is very painful. CBS News Productions that edits 48 hours had me work a shoot schedule where between 2 days of shooting on several different shoots, I did not sleep because there was no time with the slow contents management.

-David Waters/321-525-1290


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Michael Palmer
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 2, 2011 at 10:49:11 pm

You missed his point, you yes human error is the problem, so maybe your producers should purchase more media so you aren't over worked to the point of fatal errors.

Good Luck
Michael Palmer


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Craig Seeman
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 2, 2011 at 10:58:19 pm

Isn't that's what programs like ShotPut help avoid.



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Michael Palmer
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 2, 2011 at 11:05:06 pm

Yes Shot Put would help him, I use now and it works great.

Good Luck
Michael Palmer


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David Waters
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 3, 2011 at 2:02:28 am

Michael,

You and I are both in agreement. I'm also in agreement with the human error statement, which I was straightforward about in my post. So I didn't miss his point, I agreed with his point about human error, and that's why I said in my case, it was my mistake with one folder out of hundreds I deal with a week. He also asked a question in his post, why would this happen? That was what I was answering.

I would love your suggestion to be possible.
It's not because many of us shooting network television are freelancers.
So even if we work regularly for the same networks and clients, we are the ones who buy ourselves more gear and media, and I am always investing in more.

Last year, I was both Producer and Shooter for a show post produced by CBS News Productions. Sometimes I am Shooter and Editor for PBS. For 11 years, I was TV Reporter/Shooter/and Editor for an Orlando station, and contributed regularly to CNN. So the short story there is, networks are like every other work place, and doing more with less.

That means the digital workload has become enormous. 2 shoots a day, a night flight to a new city, and 2 new stories the next day for a show I did post produced by CBS meant I would stay up all night between the 2 days copying media and prepping gear for day 2.

I do like the suggestion of doing the CRC for confirmation of a good copy, but what I really need, just personally speaking is much cheaper media, much cheaper readers for that media, and much faster media. That will take more advancement in technology, and more competitiveness.

To everyone on this thread, please find me on Facebook. I have a great group of network, production, post production, and film folks I connect with and I'd love the folks here in this chain to connect since we all have something to share. I'm davidgwaters AT me DOTcom.

By the way, at the end of the day, some great guys at SONY walked me through the way to easily fix the situation. I'll post that below this so there is an answer for future people in this dilemma. -David Waters/321-525-1290


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Craig Seeman
Re: XDCAM Folder Structure / FCP Import / MOV Rewrap
on Aug 2, 2011 at 10:57:04 pm

[David Waters] "So now, the BPAV folder is wide open, with CLPR folder wide open. You are copying every BPAV folder over."
[David Waters] "What happens is clear - operator error. You highlight a lower folder accidentally."

Why are you copying these by hand?
XDCAM Clip Browser with CRC On. Shotput is another choice. Copy and integrity check the copy.
http://www.imagineproducts.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&pro...



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