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Shrinking gargantuan CFA files from movie imports

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Kieran Humphries
Shrinking gargantuan CFA files from movie imports
on Apr 7, 2019 at 6:02:56 pm

Hey!

I'm doing a big movie mashup so have about a 100 movies I'd like to cut in Premiere, but the CFA files generated on are killing me.

I only have 500gbs on a laptop so don't really have space (if each movie is 2-4gbs, that's 300 gbs for a 100 movies, for example).

Can anyone recommend a way of getting them smaller? I was thinking of converting all the movies first (e.g. with Handbrake) with a lowered sound quality (since most of them are bluray rips), and then importing those instead.

If that sounds like a good idea, can someone recommend a sound spec. that will give me decent quality at a lowish file size?

Many thanks, Kieran


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Chris Wright
Re: Shrinking gargantuan CFA files from movie imports
on Apr 7, 2019 at 7:20:44 pm

do you need the sound, render out a soundless video? I think CFA is a cache for lossless sound, so it wouldn't matter if you lowered the quality, the file size would be the same.


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Kieran Humphries
Re: Shrinking gargantuan CFA files from movie imports
on Apr 7, 2019 at 7:44:26 pm

Thanks. As I'd like to scrub through the movies and find some soundbites, I'd need the sound. What I don't understand is why 90 minutes of DSLR footage doesn't make 2GB of audio but a movie does. Is that to do with the amount of sound on the clips (i.e. lush sound editing on a bunch of frequencies - a bunch of noise)? Please be gentle if i'm being dumb.


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Jeff Pulera
Re: Shrinking gargantuan CFA files from movie imports
on Apr 8, 2019 at 3:14:01 pm

Hi Kieran,

There are many kinds of video files, and within them many types of audio files with different specifications. During import of video clips, Premiere converts all audio to its own proprietary .cfa format for consistency and performance so that when editing Premiere is not trying to mix all different types of audio files on the fly. It will always generate these .cfa files and if you delete them, they will regenerate, no way around it.

Quite simply, get an external hard drive. Never recommended to use the system drive for editing anyway, with any software, if that is what you are doing. Should always have a dedicated drive for the media being worked on so that drive resources are not shared with OS and apps, which hurts performance.

External storage is pretty dirt cheap these days (compared to years ago). Really no reason to try and edit large projects on a 500GB drive. I don't know if you're on PC or Mac and what connections you might have for external storage. Please let us know and I can suggest some options.

Thanks

Jeff Pulera
Safe Harbor Computers


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Kieran Humphries
Re: Shrinking gargantuan CFA files from movie imports
on Apr 18, 2019 at 5:23:57 am

Hi Jeff,

Thanks for the reply. I normally have all my media on an external drive but keep the media cache locally. I tried to use an external for that once but it was a disaster & eventually corrupted the drive.

For this project, it does seem like having the cache on an external is a better option. Perhaps this time a better brand of drive (e.g. Lacie/Seagate) is what I need? Or perhaps Thunderbolt instead of USB 2.0? I'm open to suggestions...

Thanks, Kieran


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Jeff Pulera
Re: Shrinking gargantuan CFA files from movie imports
on Apr 18, 2019 at 1:54:00 pm

USB 2.0 is far too slow for anything to do with video editing, definitely requires USB 3.0 or better (USB-C or any Thunderbolt).

Thanks

Jeff Pulera
Safe Harbor Computers


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