Has anyone used DNXHD or MXF media in a final cut project with any success?
I have a project that is moving from one house to another.
if i download the avid codec pack is it possible to use those codecs natively in FCP or must i transcode to prores before i work?
Normally I would say Prores is necessary but time is an issue and not everyone wants to do that.
Re: dnx or mxf editing by Shane Ross on Aug 14, 2012 at 7:38:13 pm
DNxHD QUICKTIMES...yes. But you don't get any real time effects or playback with that. Meaning you can't go out to a monitor via an AJA or BMD card. And you need to render the simple things like dissolves and picture in picture.
Avid MXF files? Don't even try that. If you are going to move from Avid to FCP, then you need to use Automatic Duck to export the cut so you can have that, but then all the media...you'd need to make a sequence with all the media in it and use the duck on that too. And that will make QT REFERENCE movies of the Avid MXF files. But trying to edit with the QT ref of those files will be like slogging through molasses in January. At that point you'd need to transcode ALL the footage to an Avid codec. And that, depending on how much footage we are talking about here...will take time. A LOT of time.
Best to stick to the same editing app to finish the project. Avid Media Composer isn't that expensive, and there are crossgrade deals. And you even have a free 30 day trial period...fully functional.
My advice...don't try to convert all the footage and cut. It'll take a lot more time and money (paying people to do the conversions and the time the conversions will take) than just buying a seat of Avid.
It isn't a case of either/or, mxf is the file wrapper. DNxHD is the codec. Same as saying quicktime is the wrapper and ProRes is the codec
I have the DNxHD codec pack plus the now free Automatic Duck importer. On a recent job I imported an AAF from AVID into Final Cut and it properly re-wrapped the mxf files into quicktime DNxHD and opened the timeline in FCP. Apart from a few missing AVID specific plugins and text fonts the translation was perfect.
My issue was that once open in FCP I wanted to send to Color to grade. Problem at this point is that Color can't use the DNxHD codec so I then used Media Manager to convert the project to ProRes. So although it is possible to work with the DNxHD codec, it isn't a native edit codec for FCP and eventually issues like grading will likely force a transcode.
As to working natively in mxf, I believe Calibrated software may make this possible but again, the FCP system will probably force you to transcode to quicktime ProRes eventually depending on the rest of your workflow.
Re: dnx or mxf editing by Shane Ross on Aug 14, 2012 at 7:59:59 pm
I've had the translation work, and I have gotten the files into FCP. Editing was iffy. It worked fine for a while, and then slowed down for a bit...but then was fine, then slowed down. And all the effects weren't real time. It was not like editing ProRes, that's for sure.
But what about all the footage that you need to have to continue cutting? You need to put that all in a sequence, DUCK that over, then reorganize it all again.
Yes, once you get the cut there, you can transcode that to ProRes.
SO yes, it does work, but it can be slow, it's not as good as editing ProRes, but the tricky part is the need to bring over all the footage in a certain way, and reorgnaize and re-label all teh footage into bins. Is that time worth the effort to continue cutting in FCP?
In my case Shane it was a locked off fine cut that I was to grade, online & finish so no more editing. So I needed the DNxHD codec pack to be able to make the Duck translation and then Media Manager to convert to ProRes.
Just trying to recall if I had RT playback of the FCP DNx sequence via my Kona3. I think I did by choosing Uncompressed 10 bit as my Easy Setup. I take your point about continued editing in DNxHD