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AVCHD File Structure, are you still keeping the complete structure (PRIVATE folder) if you've already saved the files as .mov?

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Dave Gage
AVCHD File Structure, are you still keeping the complete structure (PRIVATE folder) if you've already saved the files as .mov?
on May 21, 2015 at 4:53:42 am

I've been saving the complete file structure as well as the separate .mts files after I've wrapped them as .mov files so that they become readable by the OS (still on 10.6.8 and FCP 10.0.04) and they then work fine without optimizing as Pro Res in FCP X for editing.

Frankly, I'm running out of hard drives, tired of buying more, and I'm seeing less and less point in keeping the original camera file structure once I've used ClipWrap and made the .mts files usable. I of course back up the wrapped files so I have two copies, but I've also got the original PRIVATE folders and backups of those hanging around eating up HDs. I'm about ready to delete them and recover a couple of drives.

Any reason you can think of that I might be missing to save those PRIVATE folders?

I'm guessing that I will be able to use the .mov files for many years to come. If the time comes when they aren't readable by a future OS, I should be able to convert them to something compatible.

Thanks,
Dave


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Gary Huff
Re: AVCHD File Structure, are you still keeping the complete structure (PRIVATE folder) if you've already saved the files as .mov?
on May 21, 2015 at 1:39:26 pm

[Dave Gage] "I'm guessing that I will be able to use the .mov files for many years to come. If the time comes when they aren't readable by a future OS, I should be able to convert them to something compatible."

Yep, i never save the PRIVATE files after re-wrapping.


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Dave Gage
Re: AVCHD File Structure, are you still keeping the complete structure (PRIVATE folder) if you've already saved the files as .mov?
on May 21, 2015 at 7:05:31 pm

Gary,

[Gary Huff] "Yep, i never save the PRIVATE files after re-wrapping."

Makes sense to me. I was just being a bit anal and overly cautious when I first started with the AVCHD files and FCPX. I think I'm ready to recover a couple of drives.
--

By the way, how did that 15" Retina MBP you picked up a year or so ago work out for you?

Thanks,
Dave


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Shane Ross
Re: AVCHD File Structure, are you still keeping the complete structure (PRIVATE folder) if you've already saved the files as .mov?
on May 21, 2015 at 9:30:56 pm

ALWAYS KEEP YOUR CAMERA MASTERS! Always always always.

#1...they take up less space than converted footage. So when you are done with a project, archive only the cut...and then all the camera masters so if you need to batch-reimport...you can. The QT files take up a lot more space.

If you are re-wrapping the footage to H.264 MOVs with ClipWrap, and not converting to proRes...that can be an issue. And that brings us to

#2 - not all NLE's work with footage the way you converted it. And who knows if you are going to stay with FCX...you might switch to Avid, or Premiere (which will work with that, so no worries there)...or another future NLE. you THINK your NLE is stable, until Apple comes along and discontinues it.

#3 - you might use the footage on another show, or sell it to someone who uses another NLE. And they will want the masters, so they can import it into their system. They might have issues with the format you saved as, and need to convert, and that's quality loss.

Archive the masters...they take up less space than the conversions...it's the best way to archive. And about not wanting to buy more hard drives...uhm, are you going to stop shooting then? because what do you do when you keep shooting, but don't delete your media...you'll need to buy more drives to store this on. Unless you are deleting your media when you are done...which I also don't advise.

BUT...do what you want. I'm just making a case for archiving camera mastsers.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Gary Huff
Re: AVCHD File Structure, are you still keeping the complete structure (PRIVATE folder) if you've already saved the files as .mov?
on May 22, 2015 at 1:06:43 am

[Shane Ross] "If you are re-wrapping the footage to H.264 MOVs with ClipWrap, and not converting to proRes...that can be an issue."

I actually disagree that it will be an issue. It's pretty well established by now, and the only way it could stop working is if an NLE stops supported H.264 wrapped in .MOV. I would be willing to bet money that won't happen for the next decade at the very least.

[Shane Ross] "you might use the footage on another show, or sell it to someone who uses another NLE. And they will want the masters, so they can import it into their system. They might have issues with the format you saved as, and need to convert, and that's quality loss. "

Or they might have an issue importing AVCHD material period, and your camera masters are still useless. That is just as likely a scenario as anything else.

Dealt with enough editors who cannot handle DVCPRO HD, and I kept that in the format as well. In fact, I have never had an issue, on Mac or PC, with re-wrapped DVCPRO HD material from 2006.


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Dave Gage
Re: AVCHD File Structure, are you still keeping the complete structure (PRIVATE folder) if you've already saved the files as .mov?
on May 23, 2015 at 6:35:51 am

Shane,

Thanks for the comments, all good points. But since I only edit for my business, I have zero concerns regarding clients and other editing software. I still have files from the '80s and '90s that when it was necessary, I converted them to work with my current software, so I may have to do that in 5-10 years with my current .mov files.

Since I'm also the cameraman of the business, I tend to shoot as many takes as I may need until I feel like a have a good one. Before I edit, I go through the wrapped files and toss the junk that isn't useful and rename the files I'll use so they are easy to search on and find at a later date. If I save all the masters that means I'm also saving 50% junk files that I will never need.

#1 The ClipWrap files are the same size. ProRes doesn't speed up my editing at all, so I don't bother with it. I'm only using 1080p files in a 720p timeline and I have no immediate motives to move to 1080p, let alone 4k.

#2 Good point, but I can always go back to an old computer if required to convert files or work in an old application. I still have a functioning PPC 7500, Pismo, and G5. The only times they get turned on these days is if my kids want to play a game on them that only exists on the old computer. But, they do still work. With what I do, which mostly goes up on my website or Youtube, FCPX should work for some time to come with my basic need. My two main computers today are Quad-Core i7 17" MBPs running 10.6.8 and 10.8.5. As long as one is still working in 5 years, I should be covered.

#3 Again since I don't edit professionally, it's moot.

My basic question is whether the ClipWrapped .mts files wrapped into .mov files would be any more or less useful down the road then the .mts files themselves. I would think that the wrapped .mov files will be fine, but this is why I added this post.
--

Thanks,
Dave


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Gary Huff
Re: AVCHD File Structure, are you still keeping the complete structure (PRIVATE folder) if you've already saved the files as .mov?
on May 25, 2015 at 2:03:29 pm
Last Edited By Gary Huff on May 25, 2015 at 2:03:52 pm

[Dave Gage] "My basic question is whether the ClipWrapped .mts files wrapped into .mov files would be any more or less useful down the road then the .mts files themselves. "

I think they would end up being equal, in a practical sense. The benefit of ClipWrapped MOVs vs leaving the PRIVATE folder intact is that if you want to pull a single clip for something later, it's less of a hassle.


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Dave Gage
Re: AVCHD File Structure, are you still keeping the complete structure (PRIVATE folder) if you've already saved the files as .mov?
on May 26, 2015 at 1:51:32 am

[Gary Huff] "The benefit of ClipWrapped MOVs vs leaving the PRIVATE folder intact is that if you want to pull a single clip for something later, it's less of a hassle."

Yep, completely agree. As I mentioned in a previous post, I re-name all the clips I will be using and file them logically in folders so they are easy for me to find. It's all my website and personal video only, so this makes sense for me. If I had clients, I would re-think the filing procedure.

As an aside, if I haven't gotten a chance to wrap all the files and I want a quick peak, there's a little app called "Movist" that plays raw .mts files (works in 10.6.8). Of course in the present Mac OS, it's moot.

Thanks again,
Dave


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