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AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow

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Paul Dougherty
AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 17, 2013 at 7:03:02 pm

Think I have this straight but want to make sure. (working in MC5) I have many camera card directories (mostly Canon) in a big project on a tight deadline. Don't feel like I have time for an off-line phase and want to keep everything full-rez. So even though there is no off-line, this is a legacy project that will be revisited. Am I right in thinking it's best I not (never*) to edit with the ".new" clips because they can never link back to the original camera directories?

So in spite of the rush, once the transcoding is finished I will take the original camera directories off line and link the now "empty of media" AMA bins to the newly made transcoded media, right? ( will also set aside the ".new" clips because they have served their purpose.

*I guess the one exception - racing to a deadline knowing one will never go back to original camera directories, ever.

Thanks in advance,

Paul


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Michael Phillips
Re: AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 17, 2013 at 7:15:17 pm

That is one of the bigger misconceptions of the AMA transcode. You do edit with the .new clips as that is what was created during the process and points to the mew media created. There is no advantage to linking the old clips to the new media. What I do is move the .new clips to whatever bins I will be using for editorial and close the original bin with AMA linked clips and put all those bins in a folder called Original AMA. From there, I change the name of the .new clips to whatever works. Later, a relink is done by the "Source File" column which always carries the name of the original file when needed and cannot be edited. Just don't edit the name of the original file at the OS level or there will be a mismatch.

Michael


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Paul Dougherty
Re: AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 17, 2013 at 7:56:38 pm

Thanks Michael,

Though I haven't done much of any card based off-line, I picked up this misperception or phobia about .new clips from tutorials about making lo-rez off-line editing media(and general workflow). Eventually I hope understand what that is about re. the off-line editing workflow.

One area where working with the .new clips was mandatory was when I built my (interview) radio-cut transcoding sub-clipped selects. It would have been a big waste to time to transcode whole interviews.

Paul


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Michael Phillips
Re: AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 17, 2013 at 8:52:41 pm

Exactly - the ability to triage through all the media and make selects, then transcode to a very efficient codec like DNxHD is one of strengths of AMA. I just shake my head when I read about the whole relink the AMA linked clips to the .new clips, etc... I see the same thing with videos people are putting up about using Resolve for dailies and never mention how to properly set up the SOURCE correctly so you end up with either something wrong, or non-existent. And even in the best intentions of "we will never go back to the camera originals" I say; "never say never" a deleted MXF file by mistake can happen quickly...

Michael


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Pat Horridge
Re: AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 18, 2013 at 8:05:19 am

Yup lots of folks out there have no idea of the strengths of AMA and created these needlessly complex working rituals.

One thing you may struggle with Paul is that AMA mouned volumes (or files) currently have their media directories mounted in RAM and having too many AMA linked sources will eventually cause a memory bottleneck and the system will grind to a crawl making editing virtually impossible. This doesn't gradually build up, everthing is ok until that one extra AMA link and then it happens.
So many folks have to transcode for that reason.
Also if it's H264 footage you need a powerful crate to get good playback response.
Whatever route you take make sure you test a short example right through to finishing to be sure you are ok.

Pat Horridge
Technical Director, Trainer, Avid Certified Instructor
VET
Production Editing Digital Media Design DVD
T +44 (0)20 7505 4701 | F +44 (0)20 7505 4800 | E pat@vet.co.uk |
http://www.vet.co.uk | Lux Building 2-4 Hoxton Square London N1 6US


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Fred Gasc
Re: AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 18, 2013 at 11:17:37 am

There is something I don't get in this thread.
What's the point of relinking to original footage when it's H264 ?

Since we had this dslr saga, we got
This h264 plague within the pipeline. Thank god Panasonic stopped to implement it in their GH series.

I see the point of conforming to original if there is a jump in quality,
But to h264 ?

Avid, Apple and Grass Valley have
Great codecs for editing, hassle-free
For what they been designed for.
Dslr codecs are always hassle-guarantee.

I understand the Desire to edit
Natively Red material in 4k, although
We're not really there yet. But
I have hard time with h264, avchd.
They should be AMAed for review,
But them, what's the point of a
Relink to those if they are highly
Compressed?

Fred.


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Pat Horridge
Re: AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 18, 2013 at 11:35:31 am

Conforming back to the sources (even if it's H264) helps prevent Concatenation of codecs.
You can't always be sure what the final output route will be with so many finishing options nowadays so it's easier to conform back to the source and then transcode to what you need when you know what that is.
You optionally (if the run time of the finished programme isn't prohibitive) can conform to uncompressed which although won't gain you anything isn't imposing another codecs "foot print" on the media.

Also you may want to do an offline online workflow with sources converted to low res media then conformed back to the sources so you make online media later.

So it's often cheaper and practical to just convert from H264 to a finishing codec and then just use that all the way through but it's not always about the cheapest or quickest route.

Pat Horridge
Technical Director, Trainer, Avid Certified Instructor
VET
Production Editing Digital Media Design DVD
T +44 (0)20 7505 4701 | F +44 (0)20 7505 4800 | E pat@vet.co.uk |
http://www.vet.co.uk | Lux Building 2-4 Hoxton Square London N1 6US


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Fred Gasc
Re: AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 18, 2013 at 11:49:20 am

I totally agree. But can this be done in planification at the very roots?

I mean, I hate this h264 within the pipeline. I really do.

So I'm a bit radical, I admit.

Fred.


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Paul Dougherty
Re: AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 18, 2013 at 12:53:50 pm

I too hate h264 in post. I get the feeling producers are sold a bill of goods by shooters not appreciating how high-mainatince and high-overhead the format is in post = (costs) time and money.

Without a super fast CPU you can't do the triage review (good expression Michael) and are obliged to transcode all.

Paul


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Fred Gasc
Re: AMA transcode straight to on-line workflow
on Apr 18, 2013 at 1:26:02 pm

Exactly Paul,

Because then, others questions araise.
Like when it's time to color correct, what would we bring into Resolve or Assimilate etc...8 bits H264?

I've even seen badly lited green screens done with those codecs !... and it takes forever in Nuke (and various keyers flavours) to end with something minimaly decent. In the end the cheap ends to cost more and never ends to be fully satisfactory.

That's why the Alexa in ProRes workflow is so great to work with. But I admit that not everyone can access Alexas. But even in the "cheap" dslr, the GH3 now shoots at least ALL-INTRA, ok at 70MB/s wich is short for INTRA and yes, h264, but not in AVCHD, at least a step in the right direction. I hope those H264 will be erradicated soon from the workflows.

In the era where we start to talk more and more about 4K, image quality and so, what will dslr manufacturers do: 4K in 8bits and h264? So it will be artefacts orgy in 4K instead of HD...

Hopefully, the democratisation of Raw video will put this compressed saga to a remote nightmare soon enough.


Fred.


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