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Why is importing footage significantly slower than AMA linking and then transcoding?

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Keaton Keaton
Why is importing footage significantly slower than AMA linking and then transcoding?
on Apr 19, 2012 at 5:31:57 pm

This is probably a very simple question to answer, but I see this come up everywhere and have never seen it explained.

The way I understand it is there's two ways to get footage imported into media composer (for the record I'm importing raw 7d footage).

If I import footage using "Import..." the footage is immediately transcoded. On the other hand, if I import using "AMA linking" the footage is not transcoded at all until I use the "Consolidate/Transcode" option.

I would think that there would be no difference between these two options. However, as I've read countless times, and seen for myself through some experimentation, the second method is significantly faster. How can this be the case? What is happening differently? Either way Avid is taking the exact same footage and converting it to the exact same format.


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Michael Phillips
Re: Why is importing footage significantly slower than AMA linking and then transcoding?
on Apr 19, 2012 at 11:23:31 pm

The import code uses a lot of old code that existed for many years (easily over 10). AMA is very recent and uses all cores for the transcode whereas import is still only one. That is why it is faster.

For speed purposes, AMA is the way to go, now that is has support for levels when using QuickTime sources (graphics levels, video levels, etc.), But there are still some thing that would be nice to have such as not having a .new added to the name after the transcode. Import doesn't have that.

Michael

Michael Phillips


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Pat Horridge
Re: Why is importing footage significantly slower than AMA linking and then transcoding?
on Apr 20, 2012 at 12:18:47 pm

Also lack of Alpha channel support for AMA source is a drag.
But the real gain is adjusting the level mapping and field order without re-importing.
And AMA red footage is really powerful!

Pat Horridge
Technical Director, Trainer, Avid Certified Instructor
VET
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T +44 (0)20 7505 4701 | F +44 (0)20 7505 4800 | E pat@vet.co.uk |
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