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Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me

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Benjamin Reichman
Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 10, 2012 at 6:50:54 pm

The feature film is mostly shot with Canon DSLRs. We did the offline edit using ProRes 422 (LT), with the goal of doing a Batch Capture to ProRes 422 for the online workflow.

While trying to follow Shane's tutorial: http://library.creativecow.net/ross_shane/tapeless_online/1

I kept getting crashes on Batch Capture, which I understand now are related to the unreliability of the Canon L&T plug-in.

I'm trying to figure out how to work around this, maybe with FCPReconnect? Or...? Any tips? I can provide more details, but basically, every memory card archive (reel) is in a carefully labeled folder (TKB_111104_A01 means Camera A's first reel on November 4, 2011, for example). The file names for the offline ProRes (LT) files are all what they were in-camera: MVI_0038.mov, and so on. Well, they may be MVI_0038-ProRes 422 (LT).mov.

When I get to the Batch Capture step in Shane's instructions, FCP 7.0.3 crashes immediately (I've tried two different Macs).

Any tips? Who else has been in this situation and how did you resolve it? Do I need to manually relink all the hundreds of files one at a time...?


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Shane Ross
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 10, 2012 at 6:54:07 pm

Did you Log and Transfer the clips initially? Or did you use an external converter? Like MPEG STREAMCLIP?

Did you move the backup files after you logged and transferred? FCP has issues locating DSLR footage if you import initially from one location, and then move the files. If they aren't where they were when you logged and transferred initially, FCP freaks out. Jeremy Garchow figured this one out.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Benjamin Reichman
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 10, 2012 at 7:00:17 pm

Files were all transcoded through L&T, no external converter.

But the backup files (the DCIM folders, etc.) were moved in completely different places to where they used to be. I was using ShotPut Pro on-set, going to various small drives, and then everything was put on a single drive later. So maybe that's what's going on? But how can I fix that?

Or is there an alternate approach I should be looking at now for doing this??


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Shane Ross
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 10, 2012 at 7:04:03 pm

Try loading all of the cards into the L&T interface. Basically show FCP where the cards are. Then try to Batch Capture.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Benjamin Reichman
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 10, 2012 at 7:06:04 pm

That's when it either crashed outright or said there was nothing to process.


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Shane Ross
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 10, 2012 at 7:09:56 pm

When did it? When you tried to load them into Log and Transfer? Or Batch capture AFTER you pointed to them?

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Benjamin Reichman
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 10, 2012 at 8:02:05 pm

Now that I've switched to a different Mac, I'm getting consistent-if problematic results.

Some clips batch capture without a problem. However, this is a common crash I'm getting:

1) I load TKB_111121_A01 into Log & Transfer.

2) I select 10 clips from the reel TKB_111121_A01 in the Browser.

3) I right-click and choose Batch Capture.

4) FCP gives me an error dialog box in the L&T window: "The volumes listed below are missing. Please mount them to continue re-importing media." The volume listed is the exact same one I already have mounted in L&T.

5) If I choose "Add Volumes..." and re-pick the volume, the dialog box persists. It didn't recognize the volume in the first place and re-adding it doesn't help now (unsurprisingly).

6) If I choose "Search for volumes" the dialog box automatically picks the right folder on the drive! But when I click "Open," a progress bar in L&T runs for a few seconds with the message "Searching for media" and then FCP crashes. Every time.

I can post the crash report if that would be helpful.


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Benjamin Reichman
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 10, 2012 at 8:13:44 pm

One more note: Some volumes (reels) work fine and some do not, and it's not apparent to me why there's a difference. They can even be in the same folder! (I have a folder for each shooting day, like "TKB_111121" in which there's a folder for each reel, "TKB_111121_A01," "TKB_111121_A02" and so on).

When Final Cut recognizes that the volume I've mounted in L&T is the correct one, it happily batch captures and all is well. When it doesn't, having it "search for missing media" causes it to crash every time. It just goes poof.


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Alex Elkins
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 11, 2012 at 5:14:39 pm

It would be a more manual process, but there's nothing to stop you from transcoding to your online format outside of FCP, then reconnecting the files inside FCP.

As long as timecodes, reel names, file names and durations all match up with the original offline files you'll be fine.

MPEG Streamclip doesn't add the timecode but you can add it back in per-reel batches using Video Toolshed's QTChange.



You could even transcode to your online format in FCP again inside a new project, then manually relink to those new files.

Alex Elkins
Twitter: @postbluetv
http://www.postblue.tv
Post Blue showreel
Latest work: Greyhounds in Motion at 500fps
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Benjamin Reichman
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 14, 2012 at 6:15:00 am

Well, I switched over to transcoding all the clips in each reel to ProRes 422 and relinking that way. However, I hadn't cleared out all the batch captured clips with handles, so those were relinked as well...
...and somehow I now have a sequence that mostly works but is sometimes slightly off. A clip might be offset a few frames, another clip might run 15 or more frames longer than it should...

In other words, worse than useless. I suppose I have to start all over again? And re-transcode entire clips--for every reel. And then reconnect that way?

I feel like I'm digging myself in deeper at each point, and the pressure's on...


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Shane Ross
Re: Offline/Online Workflow with Canon 5D/7D: Shane's tutorial isn't working for me
on May 14, 2012 at 7:55:42 am

If I were in your shoes, I'd reingest everything at the resolution desired...and relink the main project to it. Not a media managed one...the one that you cut the offline codec stuff with.

This situation stinks, and only happens with Canon DSLR footage. Jeremy Garchow found this out by accident...and discovered it after I made my tutorial.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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