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Importing DNxHD from Blackmagic Cinema Camera

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Daniel Schultz
Importing DNxHD from Blackmagic Cinema Camera
on Jul 15, 2013 at 1:17:31 pm

Is there a best-practices workflow for using the DNxHD files that Blackmagic Cinema Camera produces?

I know when creating a long/complicated project, AMA is not recommended. Is AMA with native DNxHD files just as good as transcoding to AVID's mxf files for a large project. It would be great to not have to worry about having two sets of files (camera files and mxf files), and only work with the DNxHD that come out of the camera. But I don't know if I would start running into slow rendering problems that way?

Also, the DNxHD files come in a Quicktime wrapper from the camera. If they are quicktime, is there any advantage with setting the camera to DNxHD, rather than ProRes?

Thanks in advance.

Dan S.


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Shane Ross
Re: Importing DNxHD from Blackmagic Cinema Camera
on Jul 15, 2013 at 5:37:39 pm

Avid loves and craves MXF files. Sure, QT might work OK, but MXF is better. What I'd do is use AMA to access the media, then CONSOLIDATE to my media drives. This doesn't re-encode it, what this does it remove it from the QT wrapper and put it into an MXF wrapper. It's as fast as copying the media from one drive to the next.

And you'd DARN BETTER want two sets of your media! ALWAYS have media backed up. At least twice, if not three times. NEVER EVER EVER work from your originals, unless you are in NEWS and the pressure is on. If you lose your hard drive, and it does happen, a lot, then your media is gone...all of it. That that is disasterous. Typical field workflow for tapeless is to back up the camera media TWICE...two two different hard drives. Send one back to post, keep one on location. Some even copy to three hard drives. Back in post, you import/consolidate into the system, and then either shelve that drive, or copy the media to a final shelf storage option (I do two copies of this, two drives), and then send the field drive back for re-use.

If you want, you can copy the QT files to your media drive, and then AMA and edit with the QT. It should work fine, albeit possibly a touch slower than if you worked with MXF files. But the more AMA footage you add and edit with, the more it taxes the system. MXF in the Avid media file structure is always the best. You can AMA and start editing, but then when you go home for the night, set the system to consolidate.

Shane
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