Avid Media Composer Forum
AMA linking problems
AMA linking problems
by brenda morrissey on May 16, 2015 at 9:13:25 am

Firstly I am not very technical...but editing on Avid for years. I have a brand new iMac with latest 8.3 Media composer and am just starting a one hour doc for broadcast. Working from home.

I have set up my project and opened bins. I have AMA linked to my rushes and transcoded to DNXHD36, and then relinked the AMA files. My edit bins are copied clips of the AMA relinks. This is what was recommended by the post house where the final online and grade will happen.

I have begun the process of watching footage and I am finding clips missing.

1. About 20% of the pores clips from an ARRi Camera didn't transcode the first time. I needed to go back and re-transcode to DNXHD36 and relink to get these clips. Of that action there may be a few clips left that just won't relink at all. The original footage in this case is in pro-res format. So for every bin with pro-res rushes, there are about 3 clips that won't relink.

For this I was advised to transcode these clips to DNXHD185 and edit with the .new transcoded clips. Therefore my final sequence could be made up of copies of relinked AMA DNXHD36 and then a small percentage of DNXHD185.new clips. Does this sound right?

2. The C300 footage has been a big problem too. Only half of it will AMA link. The footage that wouldn't AMA link I had to open each folder and manually AMA link the clip. This is ridiculously slow. Any suggestions?

3. Overall for what footage that does AMA link, a certain percentage of clips are missed in the transcode. And from that a few AMA clips won't re-link with the transcodes.

I don't know if you can suggest individual solutions to the above specifically or do I have a bigger problem to be sorted? Could it be how the camera rushes are copied onto my drive? Is there something missing?
I am a learner driver in this regard so any help in basic language would be hugely appreciated!

Thanks for reading this...Im probably not the best at explaining this.


Re: AMA linking problems
by Glenn Sakatch on May 16, 2015 at 3:58:33 pm

I'm a bit confused with some of your process. Personally, I would ama link your shots, transcode them to dnx36 and start editing with those transcodes.
Take your original AMA clips and put them in a folder, tucked away for the end of the project, when you want to relink your sequence back to your raw media. There is no need to relink your 36 dnx media back to your original ama clips.

As for the c300, check that your ama link settings are not set to auto. Telling Avid the specific type of ama you are trying to do may help.

If not, open your c300 clips in explorer and alt drag the containing folder to an open bin in avid. This is another way to do ama linking. Haven't worked with c300 for a while, so I'm not positive what level of the folder structure you want to alt drag over, but with a bit of trial and error, you might have some success. Note the alt drag method (for me) will every now and then try to import instead of ama link, if I release my alt button and the mouse button in the wrong order. If Avid says "creating media" cancel the process and try again.


Re: AMA linking problems
by brenda morrissey on May 16, 2015 at 7:27:24 pm

Hi Glen
I really appreciate your response. The post house where the online will happen instructed me to relink the AMA clips to the DNXHD36 format after the transcode. This creates clips (without the AMA icon) but DNXHD36. These clips would then be copied and moved to a new bin which would be my source for the edit. The AMA bin would be closed and put away. Im not sure why I can't edit with the transcodes but they say it will mess up the online. Could it be something do with this being an Apple system and theirs PC based? My big concern is that once my edit is done that the online works smoothly.

I will be more exact in my AMA plugin selection from now on as per your advice. As regards the C300 material I'll look at doing a drag like you suggested.

Is it a regular thing for a percentage of clips not to relink or transcode? This is a steep learning curve as I have always had my rushes ready for me in post houses. Very spoilt but willing to learn.

Thanks again!

Re: AMA linking problems
by Glenn Sakatch on May 17, 2015 at 3:30:28 pm

I'm not sure what they think they are achieving by getting you to do the extra relink. (They aren't achieving anything as far as im concerned...except an extra bin of clips in your project) The clips in your project are either pointing to DNX media or raw media, having 3 versions of the clips is a waste. As I said, I do like keeping the original link files around, as it does help at the end with the relink. (Basically stops you from having to ama again at the end...not a deal buster, but certainly helps)

Going from Mac to PC will be a bit of a problem anyway. ( I just completed a 3 hour doc series that was like this) The ama links from one to the other are next to useless, as you can't replicate the drive structure across platforms. The "other" system will have to build their own ama links no matter what. One systems reads the original files coming from Volumes/Drive1...the other will see G:\Drive1. There is no way in Avid to easily say "substitute the word Volumes for the letter G. (or whatever the case may be) The "relink to ama files" button will basically ask you to identify each file, one at a time. Try doing that with 72 tb of clips

To get around this, I had to alt drag all my clips into new ama bins.
(this automatically updated the original ama links with the new path)

As for AMA itself, there aren't too many people that will tell you they never have issues with it. It is still a bit flakey. Sometimes it just works....sometimes you struggle to relink to items you have previously linked to. I do find the Alt drag method works pretty good when the other method starts to fail.


Re: AMA linking problems
by Jon Hensen on May 19, 2015 at 4:07:53 pm

I have to agree with Glenn about the redundant process of re-linking your AMA clips to the ones you just transcoded. Trying to think about why the post house would urge this for online reasons...

Just want to throw out there that you can change drive path letters when going back to windows platform to match whatever letter they were ingested from. Simple thing to do in disk management. That has saved me time in the past by using my original AMA bins on different systems without having to create fresh AMA bins. i.e. original bins link to drive (:E), and is mounted on different system as (:F) - Tap into disk management, right click on drive and change properties.

For the C300, you have the XF plugin yes? http://www.usa.canon.com/cusa/professional/products/professional_cameras/cinema_eos_cameras/eos_c300#DriversAndSoftware
Should be linking fine as long as folder structure is in tact. If you select a folder in the path prior to the "01" folder created by the camera, it will link to the whole card.

All very well things you are well aware of. Just good to double check!

Good luck, and let us know if the Post house has some secret concerning there online process. Seems unnecessary, but we learn new things everyday!

Re: AMA linking problems
by Glenn Sakatch on May 19, 2015 at 8:13:26 pm

The drive letter switch will certainly work from pc to pc, but not from mac to pc, as the macs don't have drive letters.


Re: AMA linking problems
by brenda morrissey on May 21, 2015 at 12:25:56 pm

Hi Jon
The post house has my mac. There were a few issues. 1. cam rushes and transcodes were on the same drive and avid was looking for highest quality file. It caused a muddle for relinking. 2 a couple of c300 cards just needed to be renamed and they worked fine. 3 a few c300 cards were problematic even to their PC system. The post house are currently running these rushes through Black Magic and will create new sources for to be linked and transcoded.
As regards the mysterious relinking step I will ask them. It doesn't seem right. maybe it's a way of verifying the path before time is invested in the edit process - I haven't a clue!
I thought I had all my plugins but it's possible I don't.
I am surprised that the process is so flakey....looking forward to the actual editing stage.
Thanks for all the advice, really appreciated.

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