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Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?

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Olly Lawer
Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 27, 2012 at 7:54:13 pm

Hi,

I'm sorry if this has been covered already, but I wondered if someone could clarify a couple of things.

Basically I have FCP6 and have just invested in a new mac with Lion that does not support FCP6...So I have to either purchase FCPX (or FCP7) or say another editing quite like Adobe's.

The appeal of FCPX is that I believe I can download a copy myself and then log onto my business partners Mac and download it on my account to. This is a very valuable proposition.

Having said that, I see Adobe are offering 50% off if you switch from FCP...Still have to buy two licenses tho, doubling the cost.

Anyway, I'm getting away from the point. I read that when important XDCAM footage into FCPX you have to wrap the clips in XDCAM Transfer as Quicktime. A couple of thoughts on this:

1. Does this significantly slow up workflow having to wrap clips?
2. Does it lower the quality or are the clips uncompressed Quicktime?
3. If using tap based workflow (Z5) alongside XDCAM footage, is this problematic in FCPX

Thank you!

Olly Lawer


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jurriaan van der kamp
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 7:28:13 am

if you want the future and if you are a pro you should never go with fcp again. Apple cares about making money now. You should leave a platform that doesnt care about there customers.
I chose to learn avid becouse they seem to be realy suportive to theire users.
Fcp is in to prosumers now and they left all the pros in the cold. They only care about profit.
Good luck with your choice


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Olly Lawer
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 8:00:14 am

Hmm. I think there is a lot of truth in what you said, but didn't they listen to all the pro's and add in a range of features? Surely they wouldn't of done that if they didn't care?

I think they made a mistake first time round, but the reviews are pretty good of 10.0.3

I think in a lot of ways they were just being Apple and bringing the future (as they saw it) to a NLE program before anyone else. There mistake was aiming it totally at prosumers.

Hadn't considered Avid tho so will take a look.

Olly Lawer


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Steve Connor
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 9:08:36 am

[jurriaan van der kamp] "if you want the future and if you are a pro you should never go with fcp again. Apple cares about making money now. You should leave a platform that doesnt care about there customers.
I chose to learn avid becouse they seem to be realy suportive to theire users.
Fcp is in to prosumers now and they left all the pros in the cold. They only care about profit.
Good luck with your choice"


Not exactly a helpful answer to the OP is it?

Steve Connor
"FCPX Agitator"
Adrenalin Television


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Steve Connor
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 9:12:00 am

[Olly Lawer] "1. Does this significantly slow up workflow having to wrap clips?"

It can do, depending on what type of XDCam you use, XDCam 422 is slow to rewrap if you use the camera to feed in, it's almost realtime. I've got used to it over the years, but I'd much rather it was native!

[Olly Lawer] "2. Does it lower the quality or are the clips uncompressed Quicktime?"

Not at all, it's not a re-encode, it just changes the wrapper that the encode file is in

[Olly Lawer] "3. If using tap based workflow (Z5) alongside XDCAM footage, is this problematic in FCPX
"


Don't know about this, but FCPX mixes codecs very well on the timeline

Steve Connor
"FCPX Agitator"
Adrenalin Television


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Michael Sanders
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 10:36:55 am

At the moment if you want to use XDcam EX or HD material in either FCP X or 7 you have to use Sony's XDcam browser or XDcam Transfer s/w to copy the files from the media (disc or card) to a hard drive.

Whilst it is copying the material it also re-wraps the files into Quicktime. It's pretty fast but since I have't worked with Avid or Premier much I have no idea if this process adds much time to the process of copying cards or discs (Avid or Premier I believe both work with the native MXF files).

I say at the moment because there was an announcement somewhere that Sony are going to be demoing a new way of working with XDcam material and FCP X (maybe 7 who knows) at this years NAB - which is only a month away.

Michael Sanders
London Based DP/Editor


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Olly Lawer
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 10:39:06 am

I see!

I do this anyway! So it's not a prob. Thought there was an extra step to it.

Doesn't take long. About 300% quicker than real time

Olly Lawer


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Kevin Patrick
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 1:22:38 pm

Premiere Pro works directly with XDCAM EX. You can browse and import the files from within PP. No re-wrap needed, nor any transcoding.


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Olly Lawer
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 1:40:23 pm

Thanks. Just spoke to business partner about it and he hates premier pro, so that crosses that one off my list.

So really it's Avid or FCPX. I have a feeling Avid is going to cost a bomb for us both so realistically it's got to be FCPX.

As I say, we capture Movs and camera RAW separately and back up to blu-ray so it's not actually adding any more time to our workflow.

Olly Lawer


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Daniel Frome
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 4:08:50 pm

I'm going to stay out of the FCPX talk on this one, and I won't claim Avid to be the best for every scenario... but I will say from experience/evidence that if XDCAM is your format: Avid is your best choice.

Do you want to edit purely with proxies? Then relink to full rez when the edit is done?
Do you want to edit with proxy video, but use the high quality audio? And relink to full rez video?
Do you want to edit with the full rez XDCAM material?
Do you want to write your final sequence back to XDCAM disk when you're done?

Avid supports all these modes out of the box, and it handles the offline/online type of workflow better than any other NLE by a wide margin.

Assuming you have the chops to learn Avid, the choice is self evident.


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Olly Lawer
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 4:12:47 pm

Working with proxies would be useful in terms of speeding up renders (or no renders at all!).

However, what's the cost for Avid?

Olly Lawer


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Daniel Frome
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 4:21:12 pm

[Olly Lawer] "Working with proxies would be useful in terms of speeding up renders (or no renders at all!).

However, what's the cost for Avid?
"


Since you've got FCP you would qualify for the crossgrade, which is $1499.

If you're still a student then it's better: $299 and 4 years of free upgrades.


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Steve Connor
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 4:22:35 pm

[Daniel Frome] "Do you want to edit purely with proxies? Then relink to full rez when the edit is done?
Do you want to edit with proxy video, but use the high quality audio? And relink to full rez video?
Do you want to edit with the full rez XDCAM material?
Do you want to write your final sequence back to XDCAM disk when you're done?
"


From the sound of it, he's using XDcam EX which doesn't have proxies anyway. Of course FCPX can generate them if required

Steve Connor
"FCPX Agitator"
Adrenalin Television


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Olly Lawer
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 4:25:04 pm

Yep, you guessed it.

EX1.

Olly Lawer


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Steve Connor
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 4:32:57 pm

[Olly Lawer] "Yep, you guessed it.

EX1.
"


My guess, based on recent posts by Sony, is that FCPX will support native XDCam EX shortly.

Steve Connor
"FCPX Agitator"
Adrenalin Television


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Olly Lawer
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 4:33:40 pm

Great. Thank you!

Olly Lawer


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Craig Seeman
Re: Quality difference and workflow issues with XDCAM?
on Feb 28, 2012 at 8:03:57 pm

Apparently Sony will be announcing camera support for FCPX at NAB.
Currently using XDCAM EX in FCPX is not different for me than it was in FCP7.
FCPX handles multiple codecs in the timeline much better than FCP7
FCPX makes it easy for me to mix XDCAM EX and AVCHD in the same timeline.
While FCPX is going through a troubled adolescence, there are certainly pros, right on up through broadcast, who are using it. It certainly doesn't meet everyone's needs but it does some things far better and faster than FCP7.



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