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creating EDL manually in Excel or similar

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Klaas Byl
creating EDL manually in Excel or similar
on Mar 27, 2013 at 3:44:22 pm

Hi,

Maybe it's a stupid idea but I#m looking for someone who can explain the content of an Avid EDL to me so I can then create an own in excel to online in Avid.

Here's what I would like to do:
We often get playouts of Avid Projects. For security purposes we only get watermarked footage and no avid consolidate or project and media - just reel by reel watermarked quicktimes. We Take them to edit in FCP and get the edit approved by the client. In the end they would like us to supply an EDL that match to their project so they can do the online at their facilities.
I suggested them to burn in all neccessary metadata - source clip names and TC and also name of the timeline they export from and the timeline TC.
As the edit is approved I would like to write an EDL that works with Avid to online with the non watermarked footage. So I would take the approved edit and just get the visually burned in TCs and names of the source to write those in Excel.
Does that make sense at all? I guess it's even easier than re-editing it in Avid and we can supply the EDL and an OMF file of our edit to the client straight away. Has anyone ever done this before? I imported an old EDL which was generated by Avid into Excel and now replace the names and TCs but how do I output it out of Excel so Avids EDL tool is able to read it correct?

Thanks and best
Klaas


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Michael Phillips
Re: creating EDL manually in Excel or similar
on Mar 27, 2013 at 3:47:54 pm

What happened to the EDL from FCP? Can that be used? As far as EDL formatting, and depending on which flavor of EDL, they are all character offset and line-based and not TAB or comma. So Excel may have a hard time exporting that. Open up any standard CMX EDL and count the offsets for each of the entries - that is what will work.


Michael


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Michael Phillips
Re: creating EDL manually in Excel or similar
on Mar 27, 2013 at 3:49:35 pm

Or instead of writing timecodes in Excel, why not just log IN and OUT points in Avid MediaLog and drop the master clips into a timeline and create an EDL from there? or for that matter try a merge of the QT itself into those clips?

Michael


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Klaas Byl
Re: creating EDL manually in Excel or similar
on Mar 28, 2013 at 10:10:33 am

Hi Michael,

Thanks for your help and quick response.
As I wrote:
We did not edit with the original source. I'll try to show our workflow:
- The client is editing his feature in Avid or another NLE
- He'll export watermarked quicktimes(reel by reel) of it for us
- We take those quicktimes to edit a trailer, TV spot or other advertisement for it
- now the client wants us to supply a EDL to get back to his source material which he used to edit the feature
- as we didn't have the project, and so editing with "new" source material the EDL of FCP would not work to online to the avid source

So The only thing I can see to keep any referenz to the source is to burn them into the picture and then create the EDL manually. If anyone has a better idea, I would love to hear it :)

Thanks and best
Klaas


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Juris Eksts
Re: creating EDL manually in Excel or similar
on Mar 28, 2013 at 12:09:17 pm

Hi Klaas,
in the old days, working on U-Matic offline, we used to manually write out edl's which were then in-put for tape on-line controllers.
I can't remember what programmes we used at the time, but Google has come up with EDL WRITER (I searched for CMX 340, which was the simplest edl at the time.)
Try downloading that, it says you can manually create the list.


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Michael Phillips
Re: creating EDL manually in Excel or similar
on Mar 28, 2013 at 12:24:34 pm

Ah.... the trailer workflow. It would be great if Media Composer incorporated an EDL Trace feature like in the old linear days, and I believe Lightworks could do it - basically trace back from a "master" what was the record side timecode back through the same sequence to its original sources. Although layers may need to some manual intervention but you would conform to the sequence spans first, then have the ability to match frame back to original sources.

This is not an easy task in your current situation as all metadata has been flattened in the Quicktime creation. It might make more sense to consolidate the sequence and hand that over than making QT, but they probably want to make small files to send over an FTP. A feature I had designed for Media Composer several years ago was a flattened file like a QT being merged into a sequence so it was now using that picture and sound for the cutdown.

And this might be the way you get the same result, but you have to manage the timeline more carefully. With the QT reels, ask that they give you a bin with the timelines in them. In your system, edit the QT track as the top track where cut points all align. Now when editing, be sure to keep all tracks as part of the edit. Send back timeline minus your QT tracks and edits...

In order to relink with just the flattened QT files, you will need not only the source timecode, but the reel ID to be logged which I assume you are getting from the burn-in. Sounds like a laborious process prone with errors. I would go the consolidated route first. 20 minutes of DNxHD 36 is only 5.5 GB...


Michael


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Michael Phillips
Re: creating EDL manually in Excel or similar
on Mar 28, 2013 at 12:34:38 pm

Forgot about the security issue with the burn-in, so the consolidate won't work... then my suggestion of just their sequence and the watermarked QT might be something to try. The manually created EDL can work with a V1 track (and to hell with audio edits that are not straight cuts) will be painful depending on complexity of timeline. I am involved in a DI now where a single reel has 1100 picture events!


Michael


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Klaas Byl
Re: creating EDL manually in Excel or similar
on May 20, 2013 at 11:45:24 am

Hey,

Thanks for your Replies. Did not have the chance to check it the past few months. I'll check the EDL writer and Michael, no worries about the audio - first thing is to get the video right - most of the audio is going to be rebuild either way.

Thanks and best
Klaas


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