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Media management of 1000's of videos/assets?

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Austin McCarthy
Media management of 1000's of videos/assets?
on Jul 17, 2012 at 2:40:23 am

Here it is in short:
I have 1000's of assets (videos, photos, projects, audio, etc.) I need organized and the be able to find quickly. I currently have the videos organized in folders... location>shoot date>program>broll/instructor/graduate. I need a way to label assets with keywords, search for those keywords, then import those files into a NLE.

Before I continue, here is my setup/programs:
2011 Mac Pro 2.4GHz 8-Core 32GB RAM
Final Cut Pro 7 (which we are thinking of leaving behind for CS6)
Adobe CS6 Master Collection
4 x LaCie 12TB RAID 5 (FW800 daisy chained, but we may eventually get an eSATA PCIe card)

Here it is in-depth:
I will try to keep this short and simple. I work for a school in the advertising department. We have footage from dozens of shoots over a 6 year period adding up to 1000's of individual video clips, not including all the photos, stock photos, music, sound fx, etc. Then on top of that, I have 100's of individual projects that uses this footage. This is the mountain of information I sift through on a daily basis trying to find a certain clip or line of dialogue - it's a complete nightmare.

How I have this currently setup, is on multiple 12TB RAID 5's (they wouldn't listen to me and fork over the money for a NAS, but that's another story). On these RAID's I have folders of each shoot organized by campus, then inside that folder, I have it organized by program, then I have multiple sub folders for Instructors/Graduates/B-Roll. It's clean and organized and clearly labeled, it's just a slow way to find footage of certain material.

What I'm trying to accomplish is finding a program that I can use to organize this footage by setting up keywords for each clip (we plan to hire an intern just for this huge project to handle labeling assets) that I can then search for and it will provide a list of the footage, that I can then import into my NLE. For instance, one of our biggest programs is Medical Assisting. I want to be able to type "Medical Assisting" and then have only that footage show up, then lets say I want only shots of "B-Roll," then I only want shots with "Teachers" and "Students." Then I could grab that footage and import it into my NLE to edit - Does anything like this exist?

How I currently accomplish this task (which is rather embarrassing, but essential), I open previously completed projects, find good edits, drag them to my new project timeline and hope that no one notices. But honestly, I don't know how else to accomplish fast edits when I have so many videos to sift through.

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Bob Zelin
Re: Media management of 1000's of videos/assets?
on Jul 17, 2012 at 12:02:58 pm


there is a forum on Cow specificially for this, and what you are trying to accomplish.

Cat DV

Bob Zelin

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Ed Murphy
Re: Media management of 1000's of videos/assets?
on Jul 31, 2012 at 7:54:57 pm

Hello Bob,

I appreciate the wealth of knowledge you bring to the Cow.

I am in a similar situation to Austin and have been researching our options. While I am very excited about the possibilities I see with the CatDV tools in these videos , I have to say that I was weary at first because of how unorganized and archaic their website seems.

I am now additionally cautious to make the investment because as I understand their software is based on using legacy 32bit QuickTime (an area I am admittedly not thoroughly versed in) which causes me to wonder how future friendly it is, and even how well it would perform in our existing environment.

We probably will end up going with CatDV, but I wanted to compare and evaluate other options. I have just had very little luck finding any.

After having recommended CatDV, would you say there's a second best in your opinion? Do others on these forms argue for any competing products or do they simply not exist?

I'm trying to look at Extensis Portfolio 10, but I just don't "get" it and it doesn't look to be nearly as conducive to a video biased library like ours as CatDV would.

Thank you,

Ed Murphy
Senior Editor / Technical Director
David Lynch Foundation Television

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