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Editing XDCAM files

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Bob Cole
Editing XDCAM files
on Jul 24, 2013 at 1:56:54 pm

I'm still editing on FCP7, and need to switch. When I use multiple layers of XDCAM HD footage along with Canon DSLR files, my old MacPro and MBP become very slow and crash-prone.

I'm agnostic, as far as Mac/PC and FCPX/Avid/Premiere Pro. But has anyone found that a particular platform/NLE is better than others for editing XDCAM footage?

Although Premiere advertises that it handles XDCAM files natively, what do you think of just doing a routine transcode on ingest, into the most edit-friendly format (and what would that format be)?

Thanks.

Bob C


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Ronnie Martin
Re: Editing XDCAM files
on Jul 24, 2013 at 3:30:27 pm

I have been with Edius (Grass Valley) since the early 90's. I came from premier at that time to Canopus Rex Edit 1.0 and never looked back. Edius will run on a Mac platform but runs best on a PC running Windows 7 and now is 64bit. The slogan for Edius is "Edit Anything". All you have to do is put it on the timeline and press the space bar...Really!!! I can mix 1920x1080i with ACHVD of any flavor along with SD 720x480, XDCAM, DSLR footage and press the space bar. You should give it a look. I am running 6.54 on a PC running Windows 7 and it is solid without crashes. The latest version that just came out is 64 bit Ver 7. Give it a look

Ronnie Martin
Kato Video Productions


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Don Greening
Re: Editing XDCAM files
on Jul 24, 2013 at 8:35:41 pm

[Bob Cole] "what do you think of just doing a routine transcode on ingest, into the most edit-friendly format (and what would that format be)?"

The least taxing on processor speed would be ProRes 422 on the Mac and DNxHD (Avid codec) on a Windows PC. These days ProRes 422 is also agnostic, as Windows machines can work with that just as easily and Macs can. The reason your older Macs have issues with XDCAM is because it's a Long GOP codec and very processor intensive. With your older Macs transcoding before editing is the way to go.

- Don

Don Greening
A Vancouver Video Production Company
Reeltime Videoworks
http://www.reeltimevideoworks.com


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Bob Cole
Re: Editing XDCAM files
on Jul 24, 2013 at 9:12:43 pm

[Don Greening] "With your older Macs transcoding before editing is the way to go."

Do you have a workflow to recommend, for doing that XDCAM->ProRes422 transcode? And do you recommend "normal" or "HQ" ProRes422?

On the advice of David Weiss, I'm considering a new iMac, but even so, anything that speeds up the process of editing sounds very useful.

Thanks.

Bob C


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Don Greening
Re: Editing XDCAM files
on Jul 24, 2013 at 10:36:41 pm

Bob, here's a piece I did several months ago. In it I talk about each flavour of ProRes and their various uses.
To do bulk transcoding just use Compressor to change from XDCAM to ProRes. It's pretty easy to set up with a preset and will work in the back ground while you're doing other tasks such as setting up a new project in FCP7.

Here's the link: http://reeltimevideoworks.com/blog/apples-pro-res-which-one/

Cheers,

Don

Don Greening
A Vancouver Video Production Company
Reeltime Videoworks
http://www.reeltimevideoworks.com


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Michael Slowe
Re: Editing XDCAM files
on Jul 27, 2013 at 11:16:01 am

Thank you Don, just read your admirable note on ProRes.

Can I just ask whether you think that it is safe to archive finished productions in this codec? I edit all my stuff in ProRes 422 HQ and it looks great when transcribed to DVD and even better on BD. I then archive in a ProRes QT .mov file to a G Safe Drive. I have heard it said that Apple will eventually abandon the codec and it will be unplayable on future kit. Is this likely? Surely it should always be recoverable for use?

Michael Slowe


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Don Greening
Re: Editing XDCAM files
on Jul 30, 2013 at 7:59:51 pm

[Michael Slowe] "I have heard it said that Apple will eventually abandon the codec and it will be unplayable on future kit. Is this likely?"

I've not heard of any such rumour but having said that I suspect that nothing is forever. When the next great codec comes along and today's digital media recipes are in danger of becoming extinct it's in everyone's best interests to transcode to the most recent codec miracle before the ability to do so also becomes extinct.

- Don

Don Greening
A Vancouver Video Production Company
Reeltime Videoworks
http://www.reeltimevideoworks.com


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