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Tape - aka, the walking dead

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Jeff Markgraf
Tape - aka, the walking dead
on Apr 6, 2013 at 3:43:56 am

A basic part of the "can I use tape with X" discussion has always been to use something like AJA's vtr exchange to digitize or lay back to tape. Is such a utility frame accurate? I've always assumed it is, but a trusted network engineer (who may or may not have an Apple axe to grind) insists it's not. I don't have the means to test it (got a Kona 3 but no deck). Anyone have experience with layback via AJA or Blackmagic? Shane? Chris? Jeremy? Beuller?


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Rafael Amador
Re: Tape - aka, the walking dead
on Apr 6, 2013 at 4:55:53 am

Jeff,
i have an AJA as well (ioHD) but never used with "VTR Exchange".
What I can tell you is that the FC/AJA control the desk through RS-422, that is the industry protocol for driving professional magnetoscopes and based on TC.
I've never heard in this forum complains about inaccuracy on the process.
rafael


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Frank Gothmann
Re: Tape - aka, the walking dead
on Apr 6, 2013 at 11:30:09 am

In general, there shouldn't be an issue. The decks require proper set-up, some more than others, but that's not related to the cards.
Depending on your workflow, there are quite a number of other issues that come into play and make the usage of those card utilities vs. a dedicated NLE very annoying and time consuming, especially when using Media Express from BMD.
You are generally much better of with Aja in my experience.
On the whole, it's doable but much more convenient and flexible to use an NLE.

With all the new features in Premiere, I keep my fingers crossed this has substantially improved as well. Monitoring, capturing and playout via CS6 has been terrible. It's useless compared to the stability and general performance of MC or Edius.

It's great to have new features and stuff but let's get the basics right before moving on.

------
"You also agree that you will not use these products for... the development, design, manufacture or production of nuclear, missiles, or chemical or biological weapons."
iTunes End User Licence Agreement


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David Cherniack
Re: Tape - aka, the walking dead
on Apr 6, 2013 at 1:53:34 pm

[Frank Gothmann] "
With all the new features in Premiere, I keep my fingers crossed this has substantially improved as well. Monitoring, capturing and playout via CS6 has been terrible. It's useless compared to the stability and general performance of MC or Edius."


From the Adobe page http://blogs.adobe.com/premierepro/

"many other fixes in Mercury Transmit and in plug-in SDK, fixing issues with AJA, BlackMagic, Matrox, and other third-party I/O systems for video monitoring, tape capture, and exporting to tape"

So this may well have been addressed.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Frank Gothmann
Re: Tape - aka, the walking dead
on Apr 6, 2013 at 2:16:11 pm

Would be truly great if they managed to nail it. Cause next CS release looks extremely positive overall.

------
"You also agree that you will not use these products for... the development, design, manufacture or production of nuclear, missiles, or chemical or biological weapons."
iTunes End User Licence Agreement


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Tape - aka, the walking dead
on Apr 6, 2013 at 5:08:48 pm

I find VTR Exchange to be accurate, it is certainly not as convenient as the tape controls right in the NLE, however.

I make frame accurate tape masters from fcp7 as well, although video tape is scarce these days. We are more in to LTO tape.

It would be really cool if I could make The Walking Dead tape masters, I would feel accomplished.

In summary, frame accurate layoffs can happen in FCP7 with AJA products (I haven't used Blackmagic products in many many years), and VTR Exchange works just as well. You can even capture to a new FCPX Event these days with VTR Exchange.

There are days when FCP7 layoffs get funky, but a properly setup and calibrated system seems to do just fine.

The problem lays not with the AJA card, but really with whatever legacy system the AJA card has to bolt on to in FCP7. VTR Exchange is much less weird, it is just not as convenient.

Two or three years ago, AJA announced AJA Control Room. It never came to be. Perhaps this year is the year for AJA Control Room.

Jeremy


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Jeff Markgraf
Re: Tape - aka, the walking dead
on Apr 7, 2013 at 10:17:50 pm

Thanks guys. I thought this guy was off base. I've certainly digitized and laid off to tape frame accurately with FCP 7 using serial control of a deck (all bets are off with firewire). No reason VTR exchange shouldn't be accurate as well. I would guess that's why there are capture and record offset adjustments in the preference panel. Maybe they did a test without adjusting the offsets.

I know tape is dead for many of us, but the networks still need tape. Even if the promos and the shows are delivered as files now, they still need to archive to tape, and the tape has to be frame accurate.

Off topic, but interesting, is the networks' issues with Apple's licensing of X. Apparently they won't do a bulk license to, say, on-air promo. I'm told Apple insists on individual licenses, per user. It's not the $299 cost times 20+ users, it's the fact that the software is not under the direct control of the network. That makes the IT people froth at the mouth, because they are incredibly paranoid about malware and viruses. It's definitely a deal-breaker for at least one network. Too bad, because I could be doing my current work faster and better with X than with the 5 year old Avid and Unity I'm using now.


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Andrew Kimery
Re: Tape - aka, the walking dead
on Apr 8, 2013 at 7:28:50 pm

[Jeff Markgraf] "I'm told Apple insists on individual licenses, per user. It's not the $299 cost times 20+ users, it's the fact that the software is not under the direct control of the network. That makes the IT people froth at the mouth, because they are incredibly paranoid about malware and viruses. It's definitely a deal-breaker for at least one network."

Malware, viruses, unauthorized updates that could have show stopping bugs, random plugins sprinkled across all the machines that which makes project sharing a headache, etc., I've worked at a number of multi-seat places and even though it can be a PITA to wait for IT to rollout updates or new software to all the machines, not having every machine locked down is an even bigger disaster waiting to happen.




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Richard Herd
Re: Tape - aka, the walking dead
on Apr 9, 2013 at 4:21:04 am

[Jeff Markgraf] "it's the fact that the software is not under the direct control of the network"

Why don't they just turn off the App app to everyone except Admin?


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