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Best way to Transfer P2 data from Panasonic Camera

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Ted Moore
Best way to Transfer P2 data from Panasonic Camera
on Mar 14, 2012 at 9:05:32 pm

We currently use an Avid Media Composer 6 and a Panasonic P2 Camera for all of our recording in our studio. I finished recording 2.5 hours of Green Screen footage yesterday and am consolidating everything onto our Avid. Before we had our Avid, I would just copy over the footage to our main HD Tower and do whatever I needed to do with it when I was ready. But, since we purchased our Avid, Avid ostensibly makes a copy of the .mxf files and copies it to their drive in their format.

I've started consolidating the video directly from the P2 Camera and I've come to realize consolidating the footage is a HUGE bottle neck. So I've been looking for external readers and they range in price from a couple hundred dollars to a couple thousand dollars. One readers on USB2, one on USB3 and one on Firewire. The camera runs at Firewire 400 so a USB connection will be slower.

So I ask the community:
• What external card reader do you use?
• Do you roll footage off to a hard drive prior to importing?
• Should I copy the footage to our tower and go about business as usual?

Any advice/suggestions would be great...

Thanks,
Ted


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Shane Ross
Re: Best way to Transfer P2 data from Panasonic Camera
on Mar 14, 2012 at 10:20:57 pm

[Ted Moore] "• What external card reader do you use?"

Two options. I have a Powerbook, that has a P2 slot built in. And at work we have the Panasonic single-slot AJ-PCD2 card reader that works via USB2. Transfers slightly slower, but still 1GB/min. The same speed I get when I connect the camera via firewire and copy that way.

[Ted Moore] "• Do you roll footage off to a hard drive prior to importing?"

ALWAYS! I copy the cards to separate folders...and name the folders. This backup is, in essence, the shot tape. It is the MASTER. I typically clone this so I have two copies...two hard drives...as hard drives fail, just a matter of time. Then I AMA into FCP and CONSOLIDATE...thus copying them to the Avid Media drives. I NEVER edit from the originals. And then I put the backup drives on a shelf...like I do a tape.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Ted Moore
Re: Best way to Transfer P2 data from Panasonic Camera
on Mar 15, 2012 at 3:25:22 pm

thanks Shane...

Great advice!

I'm having a strange problem with my transferred .mxf files from my hard drive.

When I AMA my files from my drive, a file that reads 46;01;22 from the card on the camera reads 9;42;20 from the harddrive... That's quite a disparity. I won't even tell you about the hour long clip and what it reads from the drive...

This isn't the first time this has happened only the first time I've said anything because I could just consolidate it from the camera. I don't have that luxury currently.


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Shane Ross
Re: Best way to Transfer P2 data from Panasonic Camera
on Mar 15, 2012 at 4:30:27 pm

P2 cards are an offshoot of the Fat32 format....meaning that they have a 4GB file size limit. So, the individual files cannot be more than 4GB. That means that the one LONG take you just did is broken up into multiple files. There's metadata on those files that tell NLEs that really, they all belong together as one big clip.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Steve Eisen
Re: Best way to Transfer P2 data from Panasonic Camera
on Mar 16, 2012 at 2:49:45 am

If you want speed and have the budget, look at the PCD-35. I went from the PCD-2 to the PCD-35 and now I can offload a full 64 GB card in 19 minutes. I can also offload up to 5 cards at a time.

You also need a PCIe slot in order use the PCD-35.

Steve Eisen
Eisen Video Productions
Vice President
Chicago Final Cut Pro Users Group


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Helmut Kobler
Re: Best way to Transfer P2 data from Panasonic Camera
on Mar 29, 2012 at 6:02:46 am

Just FYI, there's a super-fast PCD35 for sale in the Personal Classifieds right now.

-------------------
Documentary Camera in Los Angeles
http://www.lacameraman.com


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