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File format issues

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Jason Black
File format issues
on Mar 6, 2012 at 4:15:24 pm

I have to convert my Apple Intermediate Codec (Mac) files to an AVID-friendly file. Which will give the best quality (or are the all the same): 1) .mov H.264 codec 2) MPEG4 H.264 codec 3) .mov ProRes422 HQ? Also, when putting the files on an external drive, I believe it has to be formatted for FAT32 to work with AVID, but what to do about the file size limit?


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Ben Wilson
Re: File format issues
on Mar 6, 2012 at 4:27:02 pm

ProRes of any flavor will give you better quality. I saw some discussions in the AVID forums about how the H.264 codec changes gamma levels.

the ProResHQ is equivalent to DNxHD220. Approximately the same bitrate. The latest Media Composer should be able to AMA link to the ProRes Quicktime files just fine. (I believe MC 5 and up should be able to do that as long as the ProRes decoder is installed on the AVID workstation)

Is the AVID on a MAC or PC? The filesystem of the portable drive is OS dependant, not application dependant.

If the AVID is on a MAC, you are done. Just copy over and move the drive.

If the AVID is on a PC, purchase and install the latest MacDrive on the PC. The PC will then be able to read and write HFS+ formatted drives. You will have a 4GB filesize limitation with Fat32. And FAT32 is not as fault tolerant as HFS+ or NTFS.

We use the latest MacDrive to share drives between MACs and PCs on a regular basis.

Ben Wilson
Engineering Project Manager
SCETV


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Jason Black
Re: File format issues
on Mar 6, 2012 at 6:48:57 pm

Great, thanks! So, I should format the drive in OS Extended Journaled (not regular OS Extended)?


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Ricky Barrow
Re: File format issues
on Mar 6, 2012 at 6:47:50 pm

Drive formatting using ExFat works great (Read/Write) on both platforms with no filesize limit. Limitations are: PC - XP or above; MAC - 10.6.5 or above.

Ricky


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Renato Sanjuán
Re: File format issues
on Mar 6, 2012 at 7:20:08 pm

MacDrive works great. I also use Tuxera for the opposite task (read/write to NTFS drives on a Mac).

If you're going to reencode your footage, you're better off doing it to a DNxHD flavor. DNx is Avid's equivalent of Prores. The number indicates the bitrate and if it has an X it means 10 bit. For example, DNxHD 220X means 220 Mbits/sec 10 bit.
Depending on size/framerate of your footage there will be different codecs available.

You can download the Avid codecs for free on this page. They come in pretty useful in these post apocalyptic times we live in since last June.

http://avid.custkb.com/avid/app/selfservice/search.jsp?DocId=372319&ssdFilt...

And here is an excellent chart that explains all you need to know about Avid codecs. It was posted by Shane Ross a few days ago.

http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/45/884884

Avid can link to Prores files via AMA, but everything will be smoother if the codec is Avid's own. This would also allow you to "fast import" the files in Avid (ie rewrap the DNxHd essence into MXF files).


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Ben Wilson
Re: File format issues
on Mar 6, 2012 at 9:10:49 pm

If you have your AVID install disc, the codec installers are in an Installers folder on the disc. Or in a folder if you downloaded the installer package for AVID.

Ben Wilson
Engineering Project Manager
SCETV


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