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Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files

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Andrew Pearson
Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files
on Jul 21, 2011 at 4:00:24 pm

Can you tell me what software I need to be able to view EX files in CatDV?

I have version 9 with MXF option. I'm on Windows7 with both Sony's XDCAM Browser and VLC able to play EX files. QT, of course, cannot, so I downloaded a demo of Calibrated's XD software. I'm still getting 'Unknown format' in CatDV, although I see it's reading the Sony metadata headings (Title 1, Title 2, Creator, etc).

What else? I hope I don't have to fork out for Calibrated on top of this, since I can perfectly well see the video and view all the metadata with the other free software. Do I, in fact, need the MXF option at all to view EX files, since they're MP4?

Many thanks

Andrew Pearson
British Library


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Rolf Howarth
Re: Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files
on Jul 21, 2011 at 10:54:06 pm

You're right, although XDCAM EX creates .mp4 files, the codec used isn't one that QuickTime can play. For full support within CatDV (transcoding, full frame rate playback, etc.) you therefore need the Calibrated MP4EX component. If you install Xuggle however you can preview the EX footage, though playback is a little jerky.

To read metadata from XDCAM EX clips and wrap them up as a "metaclip" you need the CatDV MXF option (despite the name "MXF Option", it works with XDCAM EX volumes which use MP4, as well as XDCAM SAM and FAM which do use MXF, plus P2 and Avid MXF files of course).



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Jason Brown
Re: Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files
on Jul 22, 2011 at 10:54:32 am

Rolf,

Can u explain (or link me to) how people are using catdv to log xdcam optical discs? We have an ongoing filemaker pro log where each disc has a number...with fields regarding what content is on the disc. I'd like to move this to catdv, but just not sure exactly how to do so.


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Andrew Pearson
Re: Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files
on Jul 22, 2011 at 4:13:39 pm

Hi Rolf
Thanks a lot for the quick reply. I've got the right bit of Calibrated software (!) now and it's working to read the folder structure and metadata, thanks. I'm particularly interested in the 4 bits of user metadata EX offers - Title1, Title2, Description and Creator. Is it possible to export an XML of the catalogue containing the selected headings in my particular view? So far I just get standard headings, but I want to include the 4 Sony descriptive ones as well, and be able to customise what gets exported.

Sorry if this is too basic and I should have read the manual better!

Andrew

Andrew Pearson
British Library


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bryson jones
Re: Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files
on Jul 22, 2011 at 10:12:21 pm

Jason we copy them to a drive and then just log them in CatDV with Calibrated software. You could work off of the disc but it's so slow I'd advise against it. (sony's fault, not CatDV)

I just did a project where we took a client's XDCAM and copied them all to a server and then archived them to Cache-A LTO. For each 2 (1 live 1 backup) LTO tapes we made, we got back $1000-$1200 profit in reusable XDCAM discs.

2 - LTO5 tapes = $200

25 XDCAM discs = $1400 (at $56 each)

So after 11 loads you've paid off your Cache-A. Not a bad way to get a cool archive appliance for "free" and an offsite copy of your media too. How many XDCAM discs are sitting on your shelf? ;)

AS to the Calibrated stuff, blame Sony for not bringing us a QT codec. You have to buy the Calibrated sadly... But the good news is that they are good guys who make a great product.

bryson

bryson "at" hidefcowboy.com

hidefcowboy.com


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Jason Brown
Re: Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files
on Jul 23, 2011 at 2:43:42 am

[bryson jones] "I just did a project where we took a client's XDCAM and copied them all to a server"

What would it take to have you come and analyze our system and help set up something that works for us? We are south of Indianapolis.



[bryson jones] "So after 11 loads you've paid off your Cache-A."

Cost of the disc isn't a HUGE concern for us...a functional, accessable, manageable backup system is. Keeping discs on a shelf like we do with tape seemed to be a good solution. Also, it's an additional step to move all the data from disc to drive...and we have a VERY small team.



[bryson jones] " How many XDCAM discs are sitting on your shelf?"

About 85 right now.



[bryson jones] "blame Sony for not bringing us a QT codec."

I'm on the fringe of my knowledge...but isn't P2 MXF as well?

Also, can CatDV take advantage of the proxies that the optical records at the same time as the high-res?

Thanks for all your help Bryson! :)

feel free to contact me offline - jason.brown(at)cookmedical.com

-Jason


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bryson jones
Re: Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files
on Jul 23, 2011 at 6:14:25 am

Jason, I'll totally buzz you when I get back to the states. I'm out of the country working until Sunday. This likely could be something that we could remote unless there's a ton of training needed.

Sounds like you don't have enough XDCAM to justify the transfer/archive project unless you need an offsite copy.

But remember, MXF is a wrapper, not a codec so you can be able to read one kind of MXF and not have the software to read others. Think of it like h.264 can be in a flash (flv) wrapper or an mp4 wrapper or a QT wrapper, (.mov) but they are still all h.264 on the inside.

bryson

bryson "at" hidefcowboy.com

hidefcowboy.com


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Jason Brown
Re: Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files
on Oct 11, 2011 at 6:47:02 pm

Hey Bryson,

I've been working with the MXF option and our XDCAM HD media and I really need to nail down answers to some specific questions.

Can you contact me so we can talk through this? :)

-Jason


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Lindsay Simpson
Re: Using CatDV with Sony XDCAM EX files
on Jan 26, 2012 at 7:53:13 pm

Hi Rolf,

We have corresponded directly before, but I have a question specifically relevant to this post. I currently have CatDV Pro 8.1 with archive and MXF options as well as the entire Calibrated suite on a Windows 7 PC platform.

I have a handful of XDCAM EX MXF clips and a large quantity of JVC MXF clips (which I understand is the same structure as the XDCAM). I have been using CatDV to sort my media into different categories and then archive to Cache-A. After preparing to archive the catalog containing the XDCAM media, I noticed that those clips in particular were given the red 'X' and were not accessible. Bryson has pointed out the difference between the green 'Movie' and blue 'Metaclip' Type indicators in CatDV, as well as the importance of the Metaclip to retain the original media structure when archived. Having learned all of this I will now have to return to all of my JVC media, which I now recognize as also importing as movies and not metaclips.

This is where my actual question comes in, how do I get CatDV to import these MXF directories and read the Metaclip data properly? As you indicated in this thread, having the MXF option does the trick, and I do have that installed and licensed. Am I importing improperly? Or perhaps pointing to the wrong folder in the MXF structure?

Thank you for any insight you might provide, and please feel free to respond offline if appropriate @ lindsay.simpson@wyo.gov

Lindsay


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