Latest post Sun, Aug 12 2012 12:30 AM by eurostat. 10 replies.
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  • Wed, Aug 8 2012 5:54 AM

    • eurostat
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    MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    Long time reader but first time poster.Ive been installing and using Avid (Xpress originally) since about 2000.Im a Teacher and we have about 40 Avid PC's set up as per Avid recommendations.Unfortunately our students use AVCHD (Panasonic) cameras and so i have to deal with all that that format entails.Was very excited to install MC 6, but after taking 4 weeks with multiple calls to and from our Avid supplier and Avid themselves to actually get them to activate ,a lot of the gloss has well and truly worn off.I think Avid have got real issues with Activation they are not addressing.Its ok to deal with ''one off'' guys running a single installation that wont activate, but in an Institution running multiple copies its a time consuming nightmare.But i digress.

    A major problem has arisen now when students  try to load their shots via AMA (plugin is installed).If they link directly to the SD card containing their files,then the AMA function works and files pop up in the bin immediately. However this is a fairly pointless exercise as lag is a real problem due to the data rate of SD cards, im guessing.(We use 30MB/s class 10 cards)

    So our immediate thought was to copy the entire AVCHD folder from the SD card (which includes metadata) to a fast internal or fast external harddrive,then simply try and link again via AMA Volume or AMA files to the AVCHD folder on one of these drives.

    Problem is this wont work and i cant figure out why.I get  the message "Unable to link to file or volume.You may need to visit plugin website" of course we have the plugin installed.

    Importing works of course, but takes forever as usual.

    Any helpful suggestions would be most appreciated.

  • Wed, Aug 8 2012 6:22 AM In reply to

    • mjolnarn
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    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    eurostat:

     

    So our immediate thought was to copy the entire AVCHD folder from the SD card (which includes metadata) to a fast internal or fast external harddrive,then simply try and link again via AMA Volume or AMA files to the AVCHD folder on one of these drives.

    Problem is this wont work

    No, it wont, you need to copy the entire card as there are other files, sometimes also hidden, in that card structure

    About lags with editing directly with ama linked clips, do a roughcut to a sequense , duplicate that sequense to a new bin and do a transcode to dnx of that sequense in that new bin

     

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    Tomas 

     

  • Wed, Aug 8 2012 9:07 AM In reply to

    • eurostat
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    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    Thank you for the quick reply mjolarn.I did copy the entire contents of the card over,im sorry i may have been a little inaccurate in my description.

    I copied over the very first and only folder on the SD card which is labelled "Private". I copied this folder onto an external harddrive.

    After i posted today i experimented some more with the issue and found that if imoved the Private folder to the root level of the internal harddrive,it would link via AMA,however if i moved the Private folder to an external (Firewire)drive it then would not work via AMA.

    Interestingly if i tried to "copy" the Private folder to either drive, the system would just stall and indicate it was copying but nothing would happen and i had to restart the PC to get back control.

    Regarding the issue of lag,i was referring to the quality of playback as you scrub quickly through either the source or program monitors while linking to footage on an  SD card.Our students tend to use scrubbing a lot when deciding on cut points so lag even here is undersirable.

    Thanks for your tip about transcoding the sequence.I wasnt sure if this would work with AMA linked files at this stage.I havnt had an opportunity to even think about output yet.We only got MC 6 running today.

  • Wed, Aug 8 2012 9:24 AM In reply to

    • mjolnarn
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    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    eurostat:

    Thanks for your tip about transcoding the sequence.I wasnt sure if this would work with AMA linked files at this stage.I havnt had an opportunity to even think about output yet.We only got MC 6 running today.

    Good luck with your continied examinations, maybe you should teach the students an offline - online workflow already at this initial stage, maybe even working in SD mode with the offline edit if computer resources are limited .

     

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    Tomas 

     

  • Wed, Aug 8 2012 12:44 PM In reply to

    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    AMA source folders should work from any location on a local drive and not be limited to the root level. The issues you have with copying them indicates another problem that you should solve first. Permissions I'd guess.

    When AMA'd you can transcode and then later re-lik back to the AMA sources but this has to be a tested workflow that you then follow and not a voyage of dicovery or you risk getting lost!

     

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  • Thu, Aug 9 2012 8:50 AM In reply to

    • eurostat
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    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    Thanks Pat.I found the problem today.Recently we did a re-image of all our Avid PC's to load MC6,however something has changed with Win 7 and the Firewire driver that is automatically installed is problematic.This is apparently a known issue at the moment with Win 7 64bit(according to lots various sites on the web)I dont know if Microsoft are acknowledging it though.

    Anyway it seems that throughput via Firewire on our PC's was down to less than a 1MB a minute.Somehow AMA must have decided that the connection was not good enough and refused to work.Connecting the students external HDD's up via USB 2 allowed AMA to link to the copied files from the SD card on their HDD's .

    When i left work today our Tech was changing the Firewire driver over to the 'legacy' driver which some sites are saying is the fix for the slow transfer issue.Guess i will find out next week when i try again in the next editing class.

  • Thu, Aug 9 2012 8:58 AM In reply to

    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    Yes firewire drivers on PC's have been an ongoing problem and the fix is to revert to legacy drivers.

    There are some 3rd party drivers around that help with FW800 cards but I don;t have that info to hand currently.

     Glad it's sorted.

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    QC/QAR Training - Understanding Digital Media - Advanced Files * Compression - Avid Ingest - PSE fixing courses and more

    All bespoke and delivered onsite at yours. Or delivered via hosted Zoom session.

     

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  • Fri, Aug 10 2012 5:31 AM In reply to

    • luca.mg
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    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    It's the Unibrain FW driver Pat, it should improve FW 400 performance too, don't know why but I seem to be unable to install them on my systems...

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  • Fri, Aug 10 2012 7:21 AM In reply to

    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    Are you working with progressive footage? I ask because one problem I have noticed is that if I try to AMA progressive AVCHD footage from the Panasonic AC160 or Sony NX5, it is always identifield as 1080i? If I scrub through the footage there are combing artifacts just like regular interlaced footage. Interestingly, the same footage is identified correctly as 1080p in Adobe Premiere CS6.

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  • Fri, Aug 10 2012 7:39 AM In reply to

    • mjolnarn
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    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    Michael Walcott:

    Are you working with progressive footage? I ask because one problem I have noticed is that if I try to AMA progressive AVCHD footage from the Panasonic AC160 or Sony NX5, it is always identifield as 1080i?

     

    As new codecs shows up all the time this might just be an ama update issue, just add field motion to the selectable rows in your bin and, if you are sure that your media is progressive and not interlaced just change it in the scroll down.

    My own experience is however that even when clips are uncorrect identified by ama the transcode ( to DNx ) will come in with correct field properties . 

     

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    Tomas 

     

  • Sun, Aug 12 2012 12:30 AM In reply to

    • eurostat
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    Re: MC 6 AMA & AVCHD issue

    Not getting any artifacting and yes we are using progressive footage.As for being identified as Interlaced,ive not actually had a look to see yet.

    I will get an opportunity to try out AMA through Firewire next week.Im hoping that the change over in 1394 driver is going to help.The tech said that even the Legacy driver wasnt fast enough so he selected the third driver available and reports that he was now getting transfer speeds of approx 30MB/sec.

    Im hoping that even though the Firewire speed 30MB/sec is theoretically no faster than the Class 10 SD cards, that somehow Firewire might not cause the lag effect when scrolling through either the Source or Program monitors.

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