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Outputting AVCHD Timelapse - can my system handle this?

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Kell Smith
Outputting AVCHD Timelapse - can my system handle this?
on Mar 26, 2015 at 3:28:21 pm
Last Edited By Kell Smith on Mar 26, 2015 at 3:37:28 pm

Hi all,
I've got three timelines with roughly 3 hours of AVCHD on each. About 40 clips each.
Through the time remapping window, I changed the speed to 3500 for all clips. Which brings it down to roughly 5 minutes.
Now I want to export it to test and see if the look is what I'm looking for (really I'm looking for a frame-extract look, but we'll see how this turns out).
It seems like a really intensive task and I don't want to stress my computer beyond its capabilities. Has anyone else done this?

Here are my specs:

Macbook Pro Retina mid 2012
Processor 2.7 GHz Intel Core i7
Memory 16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M 1024 MB
Software OS X 10.8.5 (12F45)
2 memory slots, each of which accepts
a 1600 MHz DDR3 memory module.
Premiere Pro Cs6
I am running low on space, due to Premiere's constant "conforming". So I should have about 100 gig of space left, but at present have (hard drive) 28 gig free on 750 gig drive and (external) 38 free out of 1 TB drive.
I'm in the process of chasing down the space drains. I suspect Premiere but am not sure. Should have 100 gig free on each drive. Meter under "storage" shows a very large bar of yellow (other).

Anyway. So is such a large speed remap advisable on my system? Have others done this with good results? I hear the "whirring" and it scares me a bit.

Thank you

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David Roth Weiss
Re: Outputting AVCHD Timelapse - can my system handle this?
on Mar 26, 2015 at 5:47:53 pm

The job is processor intensive, but that's just going to take time to crunch, it will not destroy your computer. However, your hard drives are way over filled, as a rule you should have at least 10 to 20% free space on all drives at all times, especially when rendering a very large timeline, as temp files need to be cached to disk during the processing, and without lots of free overhead your renderd can either take many times longer than they ordinarily would, or they can even fail mid-render.

David Roth Weiss
David Weiss Productions

David is a Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Apple Final Cut Pro forum.

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Ht Davis
Re: Outputting AVCHD Timelapse - can my system handle this?
on Mar 26, 2015 at 8:02:21 pm

When you created your project, where did you put the preview files location? That's the reason for the drop in HDD space. Cache-ing as well. Set both of those to a location where the preview can fit, away from your other drive. I always have 3 esata or faster RAID's running. 1. work files (pro-res video), 2. backup of 1 and 3. cache and preview files. Of course this is alongside the fact that I use a changes backed up internal drive to build a disk image (dynamically growing to a max size) for the main project files and occasionally have it sit on RAID drive 3. where I have a space cut out to image to a backup. This allows me to work safely and efficiently. By containing in disk images that allocate as they grow, I can store it as a single file for RAR splits, and have those files spread across archival discs (note the difference between hdd "DISK" and optical media "DISC" here) for multiple long-term backups.
I use a matchbook pro with a 2.16ghz intel core2 duo, 4gb ram, 256mb gfx with cs6 for my main edits. I also make proxy video files for use away from the SATA drives and store them in the disk image for the project. While I'm editing I use proxies and render out my effects in previews that are i-frame only mpeg.

I agree that you should be weary of ramping the speed so much, just not daunted; remember, you are altering the total number of frames from each clip that are in your finished product, so there will be several steps for your processing. Don't limit your workflow. You are limiting it to one machine, one drive, etc. Try AE, and maybe a RAID drive with 2-4tb. Get the right interface too (esata is good, but usb3 or thunderbolt are better). Make a backup of whatever you store on the RAID. If you have multiple machines (computers), try render-farming the whole thing through AE (3 machines or more otherwise it will take a lot longer). Otherwise, try rendering out previews of each clip on it's own; set the work area to that clip only, render the effects in work area, then do it for the others too. It will take several renders, but each rendered preview will take less time, and the calculation will be clip local instead of sequence local (the values can change drastically for calculating the motion and reframing for the previews). It will also produce better looking previews, and ultimately better looking output, since the estimations are cached as separate instructions for exports.

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Kell Smith
Re: Outputting AVCHD Timelapse - can my system handle this?
on May 8, 2015 at 11:42:48 pm
Last Edited By Kell Smith on May 8, 2015 at 11:58:55 pm

Hi guys,
I could have sworn I posted back in here thanking you for your replies. Must have gotten distracted after writing the post or for some reason it didn't "take." Anyway, so thank you for your responses.
I proceeded to try and do this different ways through my system, slowly as suggested, which helped. But the process is such a MAJOR hassle.
I've tried several methods - in Premiere, speeding up the footage to drop frames, and also some attempts in After Effects which caused a monstrous file size for one small clip.
It seems that there should be a simple way to do this without it being such a major undertaking. It's not a small project, there are a number of hours of footage.
THere should be a simple way to take AVCHD MTS files, capture every 30th or so frame, export it to a still, automatically, then reimport into a timelapse that doesn't take many resources or drive space. I don't seem to be able to find a way. Am i missing something obvious?
Is the solution right in front of me? Seems like this should be an easy task.

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