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WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects

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Darin Miyashiro
WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects
on Aug 25, 2010 at 6:54:38 pm

How do you guys archive your finish projects?
Do you export it to there native raw video format or compress it
to h.264 and save it off to dvds, raid device or upload it somewhere in the cloud?

Given that technology is going tapeless, how do you archive videos? It's a growing concern for me. I have all these old home movies. At first I started just to back them up on DVDs, but I found out that the DVDs can go bad.

I would appreciate any information you can share on your archival workflow.

Thanks!!!

Darin


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John Fishback
Re: WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects
on Aug 25, 2010 at 7:23:54 pm

Do a search on "archive" and you'll see lots of recommendations.

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz 8 GB RAM OS 10.5.8 QT7.6.4 Kona 3 Dual Cinema 23 ATI Radeon HD 3870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.2, Motion 4.0.2, Comp 3.5.2, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.2)

Pro Tools HD w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec Monitors, PrimaLT ISDN


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Dave Johnson
Re: WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects
on Aug 25, 2010 at 8:13:17 pm

Personally, my approach to archiving is to have two methods with one being my acquisition medium and the second being a digital file equivalent so there's both ease of access and redundancy.

So, when I shot Beta or DV, I mastered back to Beta or DV for archiving and also archived 8-bit uncompressed or DV files to hard drives or RAIDs as much as possible (and kept the camera raws too since I never liked the practice of re-using acquisition media). Now that I'm shooting XD-CamHD, I master back to XD-CamHD discs and put digital files on hard drives that are shelved for archiving.

Sure the discs aren't indestructible and will likely be antiquated at some point (like everything else in this business), but no medium is infallible so it seems logical to use the one we have multiple ways to access. And, rather than re-digitizing when it isn't necessary, it's nice to be able to just pull a hard drive off the shelf, but hard drives fail too (some would even argue that they fail faster and more frequently than discs or tapes).

Personally, I've never been a fan of using the hot new flavor of the month lossy codec as an archiving solution ... in other words, h264 is a great codec, but in the event it becomes a sub-standard, antiquated codec a couple years from now, having all my work only saved down to that format would be pretty useless.

Then again, these kinds of things vary depending on one's circumstances ... I just re-read your question to make sure I answered it and realized it sounds more like you're asking in terms of personal rather than professional so h264 might be sufficient.


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John Fishback
Re: WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects
on Aug 25, 2010 at 8:35:17 pm

I'd archive (to whatever medium you choose - tape, LTO tape, hard drive, DVD or Blu-ray) all the original/native files you used in your edit. H.264 is not an FCP-supported edit codec. So if you recompressed your files to H.264 for archive, you'd have to recompress them again to edit, with a resultant large loss of quality.

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz 8 GB RAM OS 10.5.8 QT7.6.4 Kona 3 Dual Cinema 23 ATI Radeon HD 3870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.2, Motion 4.0.2, Comp 3.5.2, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.2)

Pro Tools HD w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec Monitors, PrimaLT ISDN


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Stephen Potter
Re: WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects
on Aug 27, 2010 at 2:52:50 am

There are so many ways to tackle this problem. The best approach is subjective and depends on your situation, budget, and priorities. So I can only tell you my story.

If maintaining quality for the future is important, which it is for us, you have to find ways to deal with large amounts of data.

Typical backup programs like Mozy won't work if you have tons of data, which many video people have. So we ruled them out early on.

My company - http://www.mediascend.com - had over 1TB of projects, source footage, render files, etc. We set up a server (really just a basic Windows XP machine) with 2 hard drives, each 1.5 TB. We set up a network share on the first hard drive. That had all our FCP projects and source footage. We went with a wired network because editing from a wireless network share is too slow. You also have the option of copying the files over to your local Mac desktop...just remember to copy the project and assets back to the network frequently. And make sure your bin files aren't scattered everywhere.

For safety, we used the 2nd HD as a backup, which was done nightly, just in case the 1st one blew out. Then we had an external HD that was kept at a separate location and once a week we backed up the server onto that.

That setup only costs a few hundred bucks and will keep everything - raw uncompressed footage included - safe. You can get 1.5TB internal disks for around $100 or so. They even have 2.0TB ones now. Chances of failure are very low.

But just to cover our butts, we ended up backing up choice projects onto Amazon's S3 storage service. It's $0.15/gb (now you can get it as low as 10 cents), but also $0.15/gb that you download. We backed up over 500gb of stuff. Cloud storage is great for peace of mind. There are two problems. First, the cost. If you are archiving tons of stuff, you are looking at a $100+ monthly bill. So you may want to only back up crucial stuff. Second, it takes forever to upload a ton of crap. They do have a pretty cool service where you can mail them an external drive and they upload it for you. S3 is great but is a pretty low-lever nerdy service. If you go with it, use a FireFox plugin called S3Fox to transfer files.

For all our backups we used a program called Allway Sync. It's free to start and cheap to buy. It made it each for us to take the main harddrive and back it up to a 2nd internal hd, an external hd, and Amazon's S3.

This may seem like overkill but data loss is a bitch. This system took us some time to set up but we sleep very well knowing it's there. And we did it all for a few hundred bucks!

Stephen Potter

CTO, http://www.mediascend.com
Creator of http://www.takeoffvideo.com - video producers check this one out


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Chris Linke
Re: WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects
on Aug 25, 2010 at 9:43:35 pm

We shoot on XDCAM, so all our XDCAM raw media gets backed up to LTO tape. After the edit, we export QuickTime files of the program (Uncompressed 8b 4:2:2 for SD, ProRes 422 for HD), and then back those up to LTO as well.

Chris Linke
PRC Digital Media
http://www.prcdigital.com


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Greg Ondera
Re: WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects
on Aug 25, 2010 at 9:57:41 pm

Backing up to LTO would be my preferred method, but I am not doing it yet. Soon. I have a lot of hard drives presently, but I know those will someday die. If the LTO recorder dies, at least there is still the tape. I shoot XDCam EX as well, but I am not sure what the advantage of mastering in 4:2:2 Apple ProRes would be? Wouldn't keeping it XDCam EX be just as good, or does the Apple ProRes allow you to pull it off the shelf without re-rendering for certain kinds of use?

Greg Ondera
http://www.Plexus.tv
http://www.SurgeonToday.org


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Chris Linke
Re: WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects
on Aug 26, 2010 at 3:21:16 am

[Greg Ondera] "Wouldn't keeping it XDCam EX be just as good, or does the Apple ProRes allow you to pull it off the shelf without re-rendering for certain kinds of use?"

Even though we shoot in XDCAM EX, color correction and graphics demand better finishing quality. Uncompressed HD files are pretty darn big, and I find ProRes to be of sufficient quality for archiving. And yes, it's easy to pull it off the shelf and bring into FCP for making dubs or DVDs.

LTO simply has so much going for it. HDCAM and DigiBeta decks can be expensive to maintain. More so than replacing an LTO drive. And at less than $30 for a 400 GB tape, LTO ends up being quite cost-effective.

Chris Linke
PRC Digital Media
http://www.prcdigital.com


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Greg Ondera
Re: WORK FLOW - archiving finish projects
on Aug 26, 2010 at 3:29:04 am

That's the kind of answer I was looking for. Thanks!

Greg Ondera
http://www.Plexus.tv
http://www.SurgeonToday.org


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