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Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)

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Rob Davis
Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
on Jun 29, 2013 at 7:05:33 am

I've spent the last two days troubleshooting this, speaking with Blackmagic and extensively searching the forums but can't figure out what the problem is. I've tried to list all pertinent project details here, hoping someone can help....


I'm trying to bring a 9-camera multiclip edit from FCPX into resolve for grading but four of the shots import with incorrect in/out points. That is, they are the correct duration and the correct clips are linked but the wrong part of the clips are imported.

In the media pane, the clips play fine but once dragged into the project's media pool, each clip's video goes out of sync with its embedded audio. If I import the xml file, the xdcam, gopros and Blackmagic Camera's ProRes HQ are all fine but clips from any of the four Atomos Ninjas recording Canon 5D Mark III DSLRs (in ProRes LT) play back the wrong part of their clips.

One thing I've noticed: I have tried renaming the reel numbers in FCPX, Resolve and other third-party software but the Reel No. column in the resolve media browser remains blank. If I tell Resolve to get the reel numbers from elsewhere, it says that the reel numbers don't match for most of the clips.

My workflow:
In FCPX, I turn an edited multiclip into a compound clip and export xml.

What I've discovered through troubleshooting:
  • Clip timecode in/outs match between FCPX and Resolve in Media Browser, All clips have timecode

  • Some clips show up as 29.97, others as 29.97df (drop frame)

  • Some clips are 8-bit, Some are 10-bit

  • Clip filenames have spaces and parentheses in them (problem?)

  • 4 Codecs:
    1x Sony EX3 - XDCam
    4x 5DIII>Atomos Ninja - ProRes 422 (LT) - recording with free run timecode
    3x GoPro
    1x Blackmagic Camera @ ProRes 422 (HQ)


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    Mike Most
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jun 30, 2013 at 5:28:10 pm

    It sounds like you really don't understand how reel numbers are assigned in Resolve. First, you must select "assist using reel names from...." under Conform Options on the Master Project Settings page. Then, you select the choice that applies to the majority of clips. This is usually "Source Clip Filename," but it could be information in the header if you have a lot of footage from the Arri Alexa AND the dailies were prepared that way. Once you do that, the reel names will appear. For the ones that require a different choice - say, they need to be manually renamed or the need part of the file name extracted from the full pathname - you can select those clips in the media pool and right click and select "Clip Attributes." That will pop up a dialog that has a "Reel Name" section that contains exactly the same options as the Conform Options section. You can then change the criteria for those shots only.

    All of this is in the manual............


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    Mike Most
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jun 30, 2013 at 5:30:26 pm

    One more thing.... Resolve doesn't like compound clips. You shoud break apart all items in the timeline (errr, sorry, "project") you're exporting from FCPX prior to making the XML. And regarding the reel names, Final Cut XML's contain explicit path name references, so the reel names shouldn't really be needed or used when conforming in Resolve from an FCPX XML file.


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    Rob Davis
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jun 30, 2013 at 6:03:01 pm

    Thanks for you response, Mike. I have read the conform options section of the manual several times and have tried the "assist using reel names from...." options you suggested as well as all the other options and deselecting it entirely. Each setting either results in the problem described or with an error message stating that it can't import clips because reel names don't match.

    I also tried renaming manually but I did so on the media pane, not by right-clicking. Perhaps, that is worth a try.

    As far a compound clips, I have heard, as you say, that Resolve doesn't like them, however, I am unsure of an alternative option as I know Resolve won't import a project that includes a multiclip. As far as I know, there is no way of 'flattening' a multiclip in FCPX. Am I wrong?

    We are attempting to re-render each angle of the multiclip as a single clip with matching timecode, all in ProRes. If this yields working results that will be another clue as to what the issue is. I would love to find a way of making this workflow function without having to re-render anything. Workaraounds are fine for a single project but we have over ten live music multicams that we want to push through the workflow.


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    Mike Most
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jun 30, 2013 at 7:34:24 pm

    In further investigating what I did to get a FCPX project to work, you should actually leave the "assist using reel names" unchecked. If Resolve does not find the clips, it will ask you to specify a folder to find them in. That works, because the path names are included in the XML file and are reinterpreted relative to the original. Compound clips should be broken apart, but I did find that it does not find any multicam clips, regardless of what others have said. It leaves those spaces empty in the Resolve timeline. So unless and until Apple and Blackmagic get this resolved (sic), my guess is there's no good answer to using multicam clips in a project to be graded in Resolve. Perhaps Rohit or Peter have more information on this...


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    Rob Davis
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jun 30, 2013 at 9:15:11 pm

    I have heard this is the way to go as well. By leaving it unchecked, Resolve uses the filenames to find clips. Unfortunately, it hasn't proven successful on this multicam project.

    This is what I was afraid of. It's a real shame there isn't a simple workaround like flattening the multiclip in FCP7. I could settle for not roundtripping and just finishing in resolve but to have no multiclip ability with FCPX and Resolve is a big setback for multi-camera workflows.


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    Mike Most
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jun 30, 2013 at 9:36:34 pm

    I get the impression from various places that multicam into Resolve was working in earlier versions of FCPX. The fact that it doesn't seem to work now probably points to a change in FCPX 10.0.8 XML generation that will ultimately be fixed. So perhaps there is hope. That doesn't help you this week, though....

    Of course, it goes without saying that all this would be moot if FCPX could produce simple, standard EDL's.


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    Anish Prithviraj
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jul 1, 2013 at 10:32:21 am

    Hi Rob,

    It sounds like only the 4 shots using the Mark III clips from Atomos Ninja are not conforming correctly.

    Could you do a quick check to see what the starting time code of one of these clips shows up as in Resolve (Media Library) and in FCPX. If they do not match, would it be possible for you to upload a sample that we can take a look at?

    Thanks,
    Anish


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    Rob Davis
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jul 1, 2013 at 5:24:43 pm

    I've verified that all timecode matches, both in/out points of the clips in media pool and the timecode in the EDL list.

    Strangest thing, as I noted in my original post, is that the audio and video are out of sync when playing back media from the project in the media pane. This is just previewing the clips without even adding them to the media pool. What I've since discovered is that this is the case with all media I play back in the media pane, not just clips from this project (this is a fresh install of Resolve on a brand new system I have never used before).

    Clearly, this is not related to any multiclip issues.

    On another note, another editor at our shop was able to collapse the multiclip in FCPX. That also did not fix the problem.

    Anyway, thanks for everyone's continued input. I just sent the project file to Blackmagic. Hopefully, they can figure something out. One more thing--I am a new member of Cow and they have to approve my posts before they show up. I apologize if my posts don't take the most recent comments into account.


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    Rob Davis
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jul 3, 2013 at 2:10:08 am

    We've resorted to a workaround. We are exporting each angle of the multiclip and then using them to create a new multiclip. This way, each angle has just one clip and all are ProRes with matching timecode. Still working on a solution to to the problem.


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    Dennis Widmyer
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Dec 7, 2013 at 7:07:35 pm

    Hi Rob,

    I'm running into this same issue. Have a FCX project and none of the multi-cam clips are showing up in Resolve. They're just black gaps. Can you specifically tell me what your workaround was for flattening the multi-cam clips?

    Thank you.

    --
    Dennis Widmyer
    http://www.parallacticpictures.com


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    Rob Davis
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Dec 7, 2013 at 7:23:49 pm

    Hey Dennis,

    Unfortunately, I don't know of a solid workaround and I really wish this was something that could be solved. I just spoke with Davinci the other day (day after latest update was released) and they confirmed there are still problems with bringing multiclips in with both FCPX and Premiere projects. With Resolve X, something has changed because I'm getting a different error and now the timeline created out of FCPX's XML have no clips, whatsoever--even less usable then before.

    Anyway, I have two suggestions for you:

    There is a $50 program available called FCPXto7 that can convert FCPX XML back to FCP7 XML. I haven't tried this yet but wonder if you could convert your xml to 7 (this automatically flattens the multiclips) and bring that in to resolve. (note: i don't believe you actually need to open 7 as the multiclips are flattened in the conversion)

    As a last resort, you can simply export your project from X (remove or burn in all dissolves, transitions and effects), then import that single video clip into Resolve and use the "scene detect" feature to cut the clips appart. This kind of sucks because you would have to create groups and add clips from each camera angle to have the ability to do global grades, where otherwise, Resolve would automatically detect edits from the same source file and group them. Honestly, on many multicam projects that didn't need drastic correction, I have just opted to do the grading in FCPX for speed but I am not a fan of X for grading or much else for that matter.

    One more thought--We have just gone back to pluraleyes for syncing because its much faster than X. I'm wondering if we started by making a set of synced masters and brought those into resolve before imorting the XML (and deselecting auto import clips so it reverts to the masters already in the library) but I doubt this will make any difference because the issue seems to be with the way FCPX deals with timecode in XML.

    Please let me know if you figure out any better solution. I'm hoping for answers with the new version of FCPX. If not, I am probably going to go to Avid or some other NLE for multicam.


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    Dennis Widmyer
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Dec 7, 2013 at 8:08:26 pm

    Hi Rob,

    YEah, we actually purchased Xto7 yesterday, and that helped. A little. The fcpx.xml's were crashing Resolve upon import. Repeately. So we then converted them all using xto7 and that worked. They were then able to import into Resolve (version 9 btw). But then we noticed large gaps on the sequence wherever a multi-cam clip was. So now I know xto7 is supposed to flatten these clips. But something is not working then. Because when we load them into Final Cut 7 (the converted XML) it shows the same gaps where those multi-cam clips are supposed to be.

    So I must be doing something wrong either during the export XML phase from FCX, or during the conversion phase.

    There's no easy method in X to flatten multi-cam clips. God, I wish I could click Shift F on the clip and have it point to the single camera version of the file. But it doesn't. It points to the file I pulled the clip from (the multi-cam). So it doesn't get me anywhere. At this point, I'm contemplating just going off the time-code, and rebuilding the entire film again with non-multi-cam clips.

    --
    Dennis Widmyer
    http://www.parallacticpictures.com


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    Chad Smith
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jan 20, 2014 at 5:25:43 pm

    Has anyone found a solution to this? I have a multi cam concert and another project that uses multi cam clips in FCPX. Multiclips are not coming into Resolve 10.1 at all. Exporting from FCPX 10.0.9


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    Dennis Widmyer
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jan 20, 2014 at 7:58:50 pm

    Well, two things that will help:

    1. They made some big fixes to how XMLs export in FCX 10.1, so you should definitely update your software. As a safety measure, back up your project first, and make a zipped archive of the actual application file for FCX 10.0.9 (that way you can roll back versions if you're not happy with 10.1). Also, if you update to 10.1, make sure to choose the option to Save your current projects as a backup. This will create a backup version of them that doesn't get updated to the new Library structure.

    2. After I had this issue, the owner of the Xto7 program made a big update that resolves the issue, and once he did, all our multicam clips arrived in Resolve perfectly.

    The issue ended up being the way the multicam clips were created from the assistant editor. He would first sync our A and B camera clips to the audio, hence creating Synchronized Clips. Then, he'd take that new synchronized clip and make THAT into the multicam clip. So he was actually creating an extra step, and that was the problem. This would create a lot of examples where our multicam clips had audio beginning before video. And up until the last update, Xto7 couldn't read those correctly, and hence, they weren't surviving the XML transfer, and that was creating all the blank spots in Resolve.

    In the newest version of Xto7, it addresses this hiccup and knows how to read it now. But another way to insure this doesn't happen, is to make sure your multicam clips were created the correct way. To do that, simply highlight / select your A and B camera clips and your sound file all at the same time, and when you merge those into a multicam clip, it syncs the audio as well. In other words, do NOT synchronize the clips first. It's a pointless step and will cause you a ton of headaches. I know from personal experience. :/

    Hope this helped.

    --
    Dennis Widmyer
    http://www.parallacticpictures.com


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    Chad Smith
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jan 20, 2014 at 8:27:04 pm

    Dennis - Thanks so much for your reply. Purchased Xto7 today and it has worked on the multicam clips that contain two clips, however it is not seeing cam A + B of a 4 camera multi clip. Sent the issue to the Xto7 folks and they asked for my xml file five minutes later, so they seem to be on top of it. However in the mean time I may upgrade to Mavericks and 10.1 Was hoping to hold off till I got a few projects out the door however this issue is keeping me from doing that :) My multi clips were made the "proper" way btw.


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    Dennis Widmyer
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jan 20, 2014 at 8:34:47 pm

    Very cool. Yeah, it was contacting the creator of Xto7 that got my problem initially sorted out as well. He's amazing and got back to me very quickly. Within an hour he had all 5 reels / XMLs fixed and we were back in business.

    If it ends up working out for you too, then yeah, maybe wait on upgrading to 10.1. Though I don't know of any examples of people upgrading a project mid-way through and really having any bad issues. So up to you if you want to roll the dice.

    --
    Dennis Widmyer
    http://www.parallacticpictures.com


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    Chad Smith
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jan 20, 2014 at 8:49:28 pm

    Exporting full res reference movies of projects, then gonna roll the dice!


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    Chad Smith
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Jan 20, 2014 at 9:56:37 pm

    OK looks like operator error on my part. Somehow angle A and B were compound clips. Not sure how that happened. Cutting in the original clips now as "break apart clip items" does not seem to be working in the mc.
    Thanks to Gregory at Intelligent Assistance for bring this to my attention!!


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    Sascha Engel
    Re: Wrong parts of clips conform in Resolve via FCPX XML (multicam)
    on Oct 9, 2014 at 6:24:25 pm

    Hi,

    I'm having FCPX 10.0.9 and resolve 10.
    Since I cannot upgrade at this point in time, I wonder,
    How did you manage to consolidate/flatten a Multicam TL in X?
    Thanx.

    Sascha Engel
    TIME BANDITZ Productions
    http://www.youtube.com/taikang


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