I have two G5 machines - one dual with KONA 2, ad other Quad with LHe. Been using them for about 1 year, with various digiBeta, HDV and HDCAM material.
Now I'm planning to buy new SONY 350 XDCAM camera. I know about Firewire workflow integration with FCP, but my question is simple: does anyone here have experience with XDCAM, and do you think quality and workflow would be better if I digitize through HDSDI-out directly into KONA (and use DVC PRO HD for size/quality) instead of XDCAM firewire transfer?
We mainly do TV commercials and corporate pretty videos, so every bit of quality counts.
[Mladen Erjavec]"Now I'm planning to buy new SONY 350 XDCAM camera. I know about Firewire workflow integration with FCP, but my question is simple: does anyone here have experience with XDCAM, and do you think quality and workflow would be better if I digitize through HDSDI-out directly into KONA (and use DVC PRO HD for size/quality) instead of XDCAM firewire transfer? "
We've been using XDCAM for the past year and have now, upgraded to XDCAM HD. The workflow is very different but very adaptable.
To answer your question... Well, the Sony Transfer software is a good software package that will suffice for most any project.
BUT, if you have to mix formats like DVCProHD and XDCAM HD, it is better to use Log and Capture and capture directly thru your HD-SDI connection into the DVCProHD codec.
If all of your footage is XDCAM HD, use the Sony transfer software and edit natively. It is faster and easier to use.
I just recently started working with the XDCAM HD and have used it both thru firewire and ingesting it HDSDI. Either way it works really well with FCP. Beware, that if you use AE very much the native XDCAM HD codec (at least the 35mbs codec, which is what I'm shooting with) does not render out in AE. This I learned the hard way after I cut a project and wanted to do some effects in AE. Even if you render it out using any other codec, (animation, etc.) there is degregation in the render. It did work well as an offline. Then I re-digitized just the stuff on the FCP timeline using the DVCPRO HD codec.
The only problem I'm having now is a gamma shift in the AE renders (which seems to be a problem in another more recent post with others). It appears this might be a YUV to RGB issue... Hopefully either Quicktime or Kona will solve this problem... For now I'm compensating for it with an adjustment layer to bring the gamma shift back down... I hope this helps in planning your workflow.
Thank you very much for your comments. Only thing I was concerned about is that, when reading about XDCAM HD codec, it looks, well, like gloryfied HDV :-). In other words - great looking MPEG, but as far as I know, MPEG doesn't edit well...
I think that in the end I am gonna stick with DVCPRO HD, especially as we already have a nice library shot on both Z1 and SONY 750 archieved in this great codes. Your AE comments were extremelly useful - don't really have the time for gamma mess right now...