Latest post Thu, Jul 14 2011 8:20 AM by Job ter Burg. 113 replies.
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  • Thu, Jul 7 2011 2:47 PM

    A month of zero results from Tech Support

    So it's come to this: an open letter to Avid on Vimeo.

    http://www.vimeo.com/26094463

    2.7 GHz iMac Intel Core i5, 20GB RAM, G-Tech eSpeed RAIDs, AJA ioXT, ATTO Thunderlink, RED Rocket accelerator [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Jul 7 2011 3:47 PM In reply to

    • Eric
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    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    Yep same o same o...

    Mac Pro (Late 2013) Apple OS X 10.13.6 MC 2018.10.0 Avid Arist I/O [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Jul 7 2011 5:18 PM In reply to

    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    What are the system specs?  I've never seen slow responsiveness like that, which leads me to believe there is something else contributing to the lag.

     

    Kenton VanNatten | Avid Editor (for hire)

    "I am not obsessed... I'm detail-oriented"

  • Thu, Jul 7 2011 5:34 PM In reply to

    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    Kenton.VanNatten:

    What are the system specs?  I've never seen slow responsiveness like that, which leads me to believe there is something else contributing to the lag.

     

    Oh, no doubt the responsiveness is hardware-related; I just expected some sort of support on chasing that gremlin beyond "that's not normal" and "try downloading the latest patch."  *rolls eyes*

    2.7 GHz iMac Intel Core i5, 20GB RAM, G-Tech eSpeed RAIDs, AJA ioXT, ATTO Thunderlink, RED Rocket accelerator [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Jul 7 2011 5:55 PM In reply to

    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    scott auerbach:
    I just expected some sort of support on chasing that gremlin beyond "that's not normal" and "try downloading the latest patch.

    All of that will start with you specifying your system here, though. That's the start of any gremlin chase.

    OS version, QT version, MC version, CPU type and speed, RAM, codecs used, type of storage used, etc.

    As for the gamma issue: going through Final Cut (or even Quicktime) and ProRes is likely to causse all kinds of gamma shifts, so I doubt you should blame media composer for the flattening of the shot. Other than judging on your monitor, you should probably look at the waveform monitor. If you open the Color Correction Tool, you can have any of the three monitor display a WFM. In my experience, P2 in Avid IS correct, and is INCORRECT (always) in FCP.

    Can you try to disable AMA, then relaunch, and use the tradition "Import P2" method and see how that compares? The Avid in my experience does NOT alter any levels when you bring in P2. It just shows the values as they are, expected at 709.

    Thirdly, if you bring in footage (AMA or otherwise), make sure that the Project Type you're in matches the source files you're bringing in. As soon as it's in, you can open bins and mix and match different media, but it does not fly when you for instance AMA-link 720p50 footage in a 1080i29.97 project. You would need to bring in the 720p50 files in a 720p50 project, then you may open the bin with the 720p50 footage in a 1080i29.97 (or any other type) project and use it.

    Media Composer Symphony | PT Ultimate | Win10 HPZ | OSX MBP | ISIS5000 [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Jul 7 2011 6:01 PM In reply to

    • Eric
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    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    Me wishes I did the same thing last year with the Hagrid/SWDC crap.

    Oh yeah them bugs are still there on my system :(

    Mac Pro (Late 2013) Apple OS X 10.13.6 MC 2018.10.0 Avid Arist I/O [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Jul 7 2011 7:40 PM In reply to

    • Marianna
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    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    Scott,

    Left you a message so I can try to get a handle on the issue....  and help you.  I see a few things in your case history that you have been working on with support but I need to get with the prouct champion to see what the status is.

    Call me on cell 813-493-6800 or email me and we can get this fixed. Once we do thjat then I can regroup and circle back to find out WHY this was not addressed when it should have been.  I think getting the solution is first prioroty...

    Marianna

    Director of CSM | Customer Advocate [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Jul 7 2011 9:03 PM In reply to

    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    Job ter Burg:
    scott auerbach:
    I just expected some sort of support on chasing that gremlin beyond "that's not normal" and "try downloading the latest patch.

    All of that will start with you specifying your system here, though. That's the start of any gremlin chase.

    Thanks, Job, though my goal here was to get Tech Support to actually deliver on the job they're charged with.  If I have to flail around the user forums for days, trying to sift through whose advice is valid and whose is just amateur conjecture, then I'm in no better condition than I would be with Final Cut.  If Avid wants to be taken seriously again, they need to not consistently drop the ball...especially on a customer's FIRST call to set up a system! 

    I mean, should I really have to ask several times over a period of weeks "If I add more RAM, will that help?" only to be told "MC is 32-bit, so it can't use more than 4GB of RAM" (I had 4GB installed)... then have to explain AGAIN --in extremely basic wording-- that my goal was to allow more RAM so Snow Leopard (64 bit) could use the additional RAM, freeing up the full 4GB for Media Composer.  It's not a difficult question!  And despite being told twice that more RAM wouldn't help, he finally realized that yes, it would.  Am I here to train Tech Support?

     

    Job ter Burg:
    As for the gamma issue: going through Final Cut (or even Quicktime) and ProRes is likely to causse all kinds of gamma shifts, so I doubt you should blame media composer for the flattening of the shot. Other than judging on your monitor, you should probably look at the waveform monitor. If you open the Color Correction Tool, you can have any of the three monitor display a WFM. In my experience, P2 in Avid IS correct, and is INCORRECT (always) in FCP.

    There are a few things going on here... first and foremost, the difference between monitoring on-set in Rec 709 versus on-screen display in RGB (I currently have a Blackmagic card, so until I get something that works with both FCP and MC, I don't have any HD output to view in MC.)  It's possible that the SDI output from MC is spot-on, and it's just MC's handling in RGB space that isn't accurate.  But at this point in time, more of my work goes to digital distribution than broadcast.  It doesn't help me that I can only rely on one of those forms of output.

    Here's what I can say, from a purely visual standpoint: in RGB space, ProRes delivers a file that looks extremely close to what we see on-set in well-calibrated Rec 709 monitors.  With Media Composer, what I see in Source/Record windows and in Quicktime outputs does not match, even when I'm linking directly to AMA P2 card files.  If the SDI signal path is accurate, great.  But it's time to recognize that the distribution world has changed, and fix the RGB issues.

    Beyond that, Avid has to recognize that formats do change, and support them properly.  Panasonic has moved to a 100% AVC product line... either AVCCAM or AVC-Intra.  AVCCAM has been out for months, and announced far earlier than that.  Media Composer still can't properly deal with it.  Final Cut could as soon as cameras started to ship.  Likewise, Avid was seriously behind the curve in supporting P2.  It's not a professional editing platform if it doesn't promptly and properly support professional acquisition formats.  It kills me to say that, because the UI and toolsets are great.  But at the most basic level of editing -- i.e., inputting material-- Avid is slow to adapt to a rapidly changing world.  They have one major chance now to recapture market share, and they seem unprepared to capitalize on it.

     

    Job ter Burg:
    Thirdly, if you bring in footage (AMA or otherwise), make sure that the Project Type you're in matches the source files you're bringing in. As soon as it's in, you can open bins and mix and match different media, but it does not fly when you for instance AMA-link 720p50 footage in a 1080i29.97 project. You would need to bring in the 720p50 files in a 720p50 project, then you may open the bin with the 720p50 footage in a 1080i29.97 (or any other type) project and use it.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought that applied only to framerate, not resolution. 

     

    2.7 GHz iMac Intel Core i5, 20GB RAM, G-Tech eSpeed RAIDs, AJA ioXT, ATTO Thunderlink, RED Rocket accelerator [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Jul 7 2011 9:05 PM In reply to

    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    Marianna:

    Scott,

    Left you a message so I can try to get a handle on the issue....  and help you.  I see a few things in your case history that you have been working on with support but I need to get with the prouct champion to see what the status is.

    Call me on cell 813-493-6800 or email me and we can get this fixed. Once we do thjat then I can regroup and circle back to find out WHY this was not addressed when it should have been.  I think getting the solution is first prioroty...

    Marianna

    Hi Marianna -

    Thanks... will do when I get a moment.  I've been tearing apart the room, adding RAM and a larger system HD, pulling boards, testing, etc., trying to get some of the basics out of the way.

     

    2.7 GHz iMac Intel Core i5, 20GB RAM, G-Tech eSpeed RAIDs, AJA ioXT, ATTO Thunderlink, RED Rocket accelerator [view my complete system specs]
  • Fri, Jul 8 2011 2:41 AM In reply to

    • Marianna
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    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    Please ping me when you can.... #1 priority - fix your system.  #2 = fix Avid and happened.

    Marianna

    Director of CSM | Customer Advocate [view my complete system specs]
  • Fri, Jul 8 2011 4:23 AM In reply to

    • hbrock
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    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    Scott, welcome back, so to speak.  There are a number of issues that you've brought up that have been discussed extensively in the past regarding some of the differences between FCP and Media Composer that you've brought up, but since you haven't been here, I'll try to give you a brief overview.

    scott auerbach:
    Job, though my goal here was to get Tech Support to actually deliver on the job they're charged with.  If I have to flail around the user forums for days, trying to sift through whose advice is valid and whose is just amateur conjecture, then I'm in no better condition than I would be with Final Cut. 

    I can't speak for Avid Technical Support but you can get some decent advice here from people who have no vested interest other than helping others.  We're not the Droids you're looking for, we don't work for Avid.  Marianna is the best conduit between Avid and us Users.  She really is a Customer Advocate and I would encourage you to take her up on anything she offers to do to help resolve your situation.  

    scott auerbach:

    There are a few things going on here... first and foremost, the difference between monitoring on-set in Rec 709 versus on-screen display in RGB (I currently have a Blackmagic card, so until I get something that works with both FCP and MC, I don't have any HD output to view in MC.)  It's possible that the SDI output from MC is spot-on, and it's just MC's handling in RGB space that isn't accurate.  But at this point in time, more of my work goes to digital distribution than broadcast.  It doesn't help me that I can only rely on one of those forms of output.

    Here's what I can say, from a purely visual standpoint: in RGB space, ProRes delivers a file that looks extremely close to what we see on-set in well-calibrated Rec 709 monitors.  With Media Composer, what I see in Source/Record windows and in Quicktime outputs does not match, even when I'm linking directly to AMA P2 card files.  If the SDI signal path is accurate, great.  But it's time to recognize that the distribution world has changed, and fix the RGB issues.

    Apple re-maps 601/709 levels to RGB for computer displays and leaves RGB levels as RGB levels.  While that may make things look nice on your computer display, it's not necessarily indicative of what you've really got on your timeline as mixing RGB and 601/709 may not export with the expected result.  Avid doesn't remap so the Composer monitor looks washed out with 601/709 but it's correct when using a IO device (like we used to do when tape was popular).  If you use the full screen display mode in Media Composer you can remap 601/709 to display at RGB levels.  If you want to work in RGB you can now do so as a project setting.  601/709 levels will look different when mixed with RGB levels in Media Composer, not necessarily so in FCP.  I'm not saying your complaint is unwarranted, I'm just trying to explain the differences between FCP and Media Composer.

    scott auerbach:
    Beyond that, Avid has to recognize that formats do change, and support them properly.  Panasonic has moved to a 100% AVC product line... either AVCCAM or AVC-Intra.  AVCCAM has been out for months, and announced far earlier than that.  Media Composer still can't properly deal with it.  Final Cut could as soon as cameras started to ship.  Likewise, Avid was seriously behind the curve in supporting P2.  It's not a professional editing platform if it doesn't promptly and properly support professional acquisition formats. 

    Avid uses AMA to allow the camera manufacturers to integrate new formats into Media Composer without requiring Avid to issue a new version for each new format/camera/codec/etc.  Sometimes the manufacturers work with "preferred" NLEs first for various reasons.  Avid now offers dedicated hardware for AVC-Intra decoding and encoding when using Nitris DX hardware.  AVCCAM is stuck with a poor preforming AVCHD import process that doesn't handle spanned clips or the use of external conversion software to overcome these issues.  Yeah, it sucks.  Neither NLE can play AVCHD without stuttering so it needs to be transcoded into a more edit friendly format.  With the proper hardware setup Premier plays AVCHD just find without any transcoding or rendering.  FCPX addressed this issue with a total re-write, but apparently some other things changed in the process.  As for P2, uh, it's been fully supported since like 2005.  That's a really old argument, your complaint about AVCHD was much more valid, IMHO.

    scott auerbach:
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought that applied only to framerate, not resolution. 

    That would be the case if there was a 1080/50p, but there is only 720/50p.

    MacPro, MacBook Pro and a Cube (masquerading as a kleenex dispenser). [view my complete system specs]

    Must think of something clever to go here...

  • Fri, Jul 8 2011 5:45 AM In reply to

    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    hbrock:
    There are a number of issues that you've brought up that have been discussed extensively in the past

    No doubt!  I've been out of Avid circles for several years.  

    hbrock:
    we don't work for Avid

    Really?  I assumed the moderators did.

    hbrock:
    you can get some decent advice here

    I already have.  That wasn't intended as a blanket slam, though I see that it could be read that way.  The signal-to-noise ratio here is better than most user forums, but there's still noise, and one still has to filter through it, as well as spending serious amounts of time just trying to find discussions, if you're interested in a fairly specific topic.  It's one thing if you follow the forum daily... it's quite another to jump into it cold.  There wasn't anything like this when I was forced to migrate to FCP...all the support was from 800 800 AVID or your local systems integrator.

    hbrock:
    If you use the full screen display mode in Media Composer you can remap 601/709 to display at RGB levels.  If you want to work in RGB you can now do so as a project setting.

    Toggling to FS mode is... well, it's nice to have SOME sort of workaround, but you have to admit it's a bit kludgey.  (I have the same feeling about having to make a separate project for every format of AMA media, just to open those bins in the ACTUAL project....)  Will have to look at how RGB projects behave.  I assumed that was exclusively for RGB media, not a means to remap 709 into RGB space for a more accurate on-screen preview of what the final computer deliverable will look like.  Thanks.

    hbrock:
    Avid now offers dedicated hardware for AVC-Intra decoding and encoding when using Nitris DX hardware.

    Mmmmm... Reminds me of the "Oh, you want to add graphics?  Here, buy this D|S system for another 100 grand" days...  ;-)  I understand it's a CPU-intensive codec, but hell... I can buy a FCP plug-in for $90 that provides brilliant on-the-fly decoding of AVC-Intra.  I can buy logging software for AVC-Intra for my laptop.  But I have to spend somewhere between 5-10 grand to do it on Avid?  That's just not realistic (not to mention the lack of a free PCI slot...which means a second Mac...which means fast networked storage to be able to access the same files on both FCP and Nitris.  Huge investment just to be able to play a garden-variety broadcast file.)

    I'd even settle for transcoding it to DNxHD if it weren't so glacially slow compared to FCP's transcode.

    hbrock:
    FCPX addressed this issue with a total re-write, but apparently some other things changed in the process.

    The laugh-out-loud line of the week!

    hbrock:
    As for P2, uh, it's been fully supported since like 2005.

    That's pretty much when I exited the stage.  But I remember clearly what a nightmare it was in the year or two between "We support P2!" and actually being able to plug in a P2 external drive the next day and get anything to relink.  Oddly enough, I'm suddenly having exactly the same inability to relink on my current project.  The only difference this time being that all of the media is on attached eSATA that hasn't even been unplugged.  I'm hoping it's simply another facet in the overall mess specific to my machine, and not an indication of something inherent in the software.

    hbrock:
    Marianna is the best conduit between Avid and us Users

    She & I are already in touch... I'm off on a bunch of shoots coming up, and for the time being I've rebuilt the whole effin' project today in FCP so I can make any kind of progress on it.  

     

    Thanks for the reply!

    2.7 GHz iMac Intel Core i5, 20GB RAM, G-Tech eSpeed RAIDs, AJA ioXT, ATTO Thunderlink, RED Rocket accelerator [view my complete system specs]
  • Fri, Jul 8 2011 6:24 AM In reply to

    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    scott auerbach:
    With Media Composer, what I see in Source/Record windows and in Quicktime outputs does not match
    It should, as long as you export with 709 levels. See some detailed explanation. Yes, MC is a 709-based system. If you need to distribute in RGB, Avid suggests you work in a 709 setup, then export the final formats in RGB.
    scott auerbach:
    I currently have a Blackmagic card
    So you capture into FCP, and BMD+FCP means that the gamma is changed upon capture (as I could measure, it meant blacks lowered from 16 to 0, but whites unchanged, but therefore gamma changed). So I'm suspecting that some of the gamma issues you are seeing are actually issues with the BMD. As it has worked for you, you may or may not want to believe that, which is why I recommend checking Waveform monitors, rather than judging the difference by the eye, especially when mixing different applications and viewer windows (Avid's S/R monitors look different from an FCP monitor, and different from a QT window, depending on a.o. codec).
    scott auerbach:
    Avid was seriously behind the curve in supporting P2
    They weren't "seriously behind the curve" they came a bit later, but then they came with the very best solution. Much easier and better than the FCP way was.
    scott auerbach:
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought that applied only to framerate, not resolution.
    In your video, I see footage marked '720p50' with a 59i framerate. That makes no sense to me at all. And as Howard noted, p50 is not the same as i50.
    Media Composer Symphony | PT Ultimate | Win10 HPZ | OSX MBP | ISIS5000 [view my complete system specs]
  • Fri, Jul 8 2011 7:42 AM In reply to

    • hbrock
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    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    scott auerbach:

    understand it's a CPU-intensive codec, but hell... I can buy a FCP plug-in for $90 that provides brilliant on-the-fly decoding of AVC-Intra.  I can buy logging software for AVC-Intra for my laptop.  But I have to spend somewhere between 5-10 grand to do it on Avid?  That's just not realistic (not to mention the lack of a free PCI slot...which means a second Mac...which means fast networked storage to be able to access the same files on both FCP and Nitris.  Huge investment just to be able to play a garden-variety broadcast file.)

    I'd even settle for transcoding it to DNxHD if it weren't so glacially slow compared to FCP's transcode.

    AVC-Intra is processor intensive.  It's performance is similar on both Media Composer and FCP. If you've got a newer Mac Book Pro or a decent Mac Pro it can decode it without any additional hardware, but if you add a few streams or need to re-encode it back into AVC-Intra on the fly because your broadcast server uses that format then the hardware card inside the Nitris DX might make some sense.  It seems to be a need of large broadcasters.  That card goes inside of the Nitris DX and doesn't suck up another PCI slot.  I don't think the transcode times are much different between FCP and Media Composer for AVC-Intra.  You can even edit AVC-Intra without transcoding, but it's not "snappy" like ProRes or DNxHD.  AVCHD, that's another story altogether...

    As for the rest of the IO situation, Avid now supports both the Matrox MXO2 Mini and the AJA IO Express as 3rd party hardware solutions.  Both of those devices work cross platform on Avid, Premiere and FCP.  Unfortunately, at this time, these are the only products that do work with other NLEs.  All of the available IO solutions, whether Avid Mojo DX, Avid Nitris DX, Matrox MXO2 Mini or AJA IO Express use one 4x PCIe slot.  FCPX improves on this by not using any slots at all!

    As for your P2 relinking, give us some details and we can probably help you out.  AMA and "P2...Import" are different workflows much like Log and Transfer isn't the same as Import in FCP.

    MacPro, MacBook Pro and a Cube (masquerading as a kleenex dispenser). [view my complete system specs]

    Must think of something clever to go here...

  • Fri, Jul 8 2011 8:56 AM In reply to

    • Tim
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    Re: A month of zero results from Tech Support

    Interesting....with the lag response time, I have found I get lag response as well not as bad as your lag and on a PC not MAC but still its there but only with long clips imported via AMA, short clips are fine via AMA,

    as mentioned it happens only with long clips imported in via AMA, everything else is fine,

    my system specs below,

     

     

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