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Reduce Clip File Size

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Dwight Duncan
Reduce Clip File Size
on Jan 9, 2017 at 8:01:52 pm

I've got some larger clips 1+ hours long that don't always make it into the edit for the project. I want to keep these files, but at a smaller file size than the original. The idea is to reduce the files size by encoding it in the same place that it came from so as to not break the file path/link in the catalog.

I created an action that encodes a standalone movie and overwrites the original, but this isn't always successful and I run the risk of losing the original clip. Unless there is something about how the overwrite works that I'm not aware of and this is the write way to do it? To void losing a clip my idea is to move the original clip to a temp folder then encode the clip back to it's original location followed by a clean up of the temp folder at the end. This should result in a reduced file size clip in place of the original while maintaining the link to the clip in CatDV.

I've tried a few different methods thus far with no luck. My current attempt goes as follows.
The first action. Worker records the file path, moves the file and cleans up the trigger that started the action.
Set Clip Field (temp path = "$p") /SAN/Media/Project_folder this is written to field U26 for later use.
Move File (/SAN/temp$r)
Set Clip Field (Trigger = "false")

The second action uses the "temp" folder as a watch folder.
Export Standalone Movie (${U26}$r)

I'd like for the watch folder clip to be picked up and written back to the original clips location, but at this point my conversion fails with an error "java.lang.RuntimeException: Export failed (source movie missing or unplayable?)" It looks like it can't find the clip that was moved into the watch folder.

Even if this worked I can see now I need some other identifier to match the encoded clip with the record it is replacing. I'm just not sure of the best field to use for this or how to incorporated it in the action. Maybe CATID is the other field I need to connect the newly encoded clip with the record.

I'm open to suggestions for this workflow or if there is a better way I'm open that as well.

Anyone have any insight they are willing to share?


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Robb Harriss
Re: Reduce Clip File Size
on Jan 9, 2017 at 8:31:48 pm

This is the whole point of the proxies, and the way CatDV works is that it preserves the directory structure. At least it does when you use the "Path" methodology for proxy creation, something that's been advised for many years, now.

In the settings just specify a proxy version that's going to be smaller than the original, lower bit rate, smaller frame size, etc, than the original. Let CatDV make the proxy and it's going to save it on the designated proxy drive, but using a directory structure that mimics the original. It also means you'll "always" have access to the clip even when the original is offline.

Non-linear: all the time and nothing but.


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Dwight Duncan
Re: Reduce Clip File Size
on Jan 9, 2017 at 8:59:21 pm

Hello Robb,

I'm encoding to a format that is smaller than the original and bigger than the proxy. Source is UHD being reduced to HD to save a little bit of space and still have a file that is worth editing if needed later.

While keeping just the proxy is a good idea, it's not one that will work for my need.

Thanks


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Robb Harriss
Re: Reduce Clip File Size
on Jan 9, 2017 at 9:10:38 pm

You can create an HD copy and save it on the proxy drive. If your issue is that it will overfill the proxy drive, you can replace the UHD file with the HD as long as it has the same name, and if doesn't link just use the function, Update Media or Attach Media.

Non-linear: all the time and nothing but.


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Dwight Duncan
Re: Reduce Clip File Size
on Jan 9, 2017 at 9:16:21 pm

This sounds interesting. How does one maintain 2 different proxy workflows. This will have to be an alternate proxy as I don't want to destroy my current proxy workflow. To many years of LTO archiving that can't be messed with.


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Robb Harriss
Re: Reduce Clip File Size
on Jan 9, 2017 at 9:24:20 pm

So you still want to have another different much smaller proxy as well as an HD version of the UHD original?

You can save the HD version anyplace you want and scan it into the original catalog. I wouldn't try to name it exactly the same. I'd use a prefix or suffix of HD to distinguish it from the original. Then it can sit right next to the original UHD in the catalog. Mark the UHD "hidden" if you want. Sound like you really just have to decide to keep the UHD/HD copies, that is, pick one. Having multiple copies of anything with the same name courts disaster. The proxy is different because it generally has a different extension, or at least is over on the proxy drive.

Personally I believe in developing a good online/offline workflow. I'm on Media Composer and it's particular good at that. I have lots of versions of original files.

Non-linear: all the time and nothing but.


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Dwight Duncan
Re: Reduce Clip File Size
on Jan 10, 2017 at 4:21:11 pm

I understand what you are saying. I’m just not sure how to apply it as an automated workflow. If you don't mind baby stepping me through this that would be great. Also, I've just made the move from Worker 5 to 6 and I'm suffering some growing pains with the layout.

The export part I've done before. How does one add a suffix to exported titles? Previously I think there was a panel for this, but now it's been moved or is gone.

I've never used the hide option and don't think it's something I would do. Once I have the reduced HD copy I want to delete the UHD.


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Robb Harriss
Re: Reduce Clip File Size
on Jan 11, 2017 at 4:42:05 pm

I'm afraid I'm not one to ask about Worker. I don't have it. I'm just on a workgroup server with several seats of Pro, and I recently upgraded to a copy of Pegasus.
Because I'm using Avid, I tend to run everything through Media Composer first. That way MC can add it's metadata and track the clip. So if I want an HD (or other) version of a UHD file I'd transcode it in MC and place it in a bin labeled appropriately. And I'm always using tape/reel names to help distinguish clips. If I want to rename something I do it in MC, so the name tracks. Once new media is created I'm going to scan with CatDV to pickup the new files. If I'm going to delete media from CatDV I do it inside of the app under the media Menu, so the database is updated.
I'm not going to consider an HD file a proxy if you have any possibility of working with it later. If I want to save space on my working media drives I'll make a much smaller proxy file (I do a lot of SD copies of HD files) or even a DNxHD36 copy, and work with that, while I move the original off to an archive drive (or LTO). I'll link back to the original later, when finishing.

Non-linear: all the time and nothing but.


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Dwight Duncan
Re: Reduce Clip File Size
on Jan 11, 2017 at 5:21:52 pm

No problem thanks for replies.


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