FCP Playback Problem

Posted by Anonymous User 
Anonymous User
FCP Playback Problem
September 18, 2006 12:50PM
Hello-
I'm having problems with playback in FCP and would like some advice. Version: FCP HD 4.5. Warning: Dropped Frames on Playback. This occurs when trying to playback a short sequence - about 1 min long at this point. This is a very basic rough cut at this point with cuts only, NO effects. Video is on 1 track and audio is on 4 tracks. (The sequence wouldn't play at all when I tried to add a video dissolve). I have many sequences (stringouts) in this project, but I have only one sequence open in the timeline. The Run Time is on "Safe" not unlimited. This happens almost everytime I try to play the sequence. My final video will be between 5-8 min long and I'm already having problems playing back a 1 min. rough cut w/ no effects. Any idea what the problem could be or how to solve it is much appreciated. Thanks - Stefani
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 18, 2006 12:57PM
Look in the FAQ. Click on the fat pony on the left side of the forum page to access.

[www.lafcpug.org]

My first guess would be that you're using a mis-formatted drive for capture and playback. What is your Scratch Disk?


www.derekmok.com
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 18, 2006 01:02PM
What format are you trying to play? What disk system is it on?

Might give system - RAM - MacOs version stuff while your at it.

Most times the "dropped frames" issue is a hard drive that is not fast enough to transfer those clips in real time. Running FCP and capturing on the same hard drive is a transfer killer just as using Standard Def files off a single HD.
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 18, 2006 01:21PM
<<<a hard drive that is not fast enough to transfer those clips in real time.>>>

Remember the desparation method of exporting the movie as a self-contained QuickTime. Move the movie to an internal drive and disconnect *everything* but the tape machine. Load and play the movie from there.

That eliminates even more of the work Final Cut has to do at playback.

Koz
Anonymous User
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 18, 2006 05:01PM
Thanks for the replys! I checked out the FAQ, and am looking at the Apple support site for dropped frame issues but I'm a bit overwhelmed by all of the possibilities.

My scratch disks are two 250gig LaCie external hard drives with USB 2.0 connections. FCP is running on a Mac G-5 with MAC OS X.

Thanks,
Stefani
Anonymous User
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 18, 2006 05:06PM
Also - the drives are formatted as MAC OS Extended. One of the drives was MAC OS extended (Journaled) - I turned the journaling of using Disk Uitlity. - Stefani
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 18, 2006 05:35PM
<<<My scratch disks are two 250gig LaCie external hard drives with USB 2.0 connections.>>>

USB has not been particularly good with live video--either capture or playback.

That and if you have more than one connected, that can cause problems, too.

Export your movie as a single QuickTime and play it from an internal drive. Unplug all the external drives. Especially with USB drives, you may never get good playback with those connected and running.

Live video, either play or capture is a very delicate thing. It's easy to get damage if you don't do everything just right.

There are pages and pages of reasons I'm telling you to do this, but that export and play technique works when a lot of other methods fail.

[www.kozco.com]

Go down to the bottom of that page for the desparation method. That works in Final Cut 5, too. I've been too lazy to update it.

Koz
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 18, 2006 05:43PM
Quote
Koz said
USB has not been particularly good with live video--either capture or playback.

This is an understatement. USB is effectively useless for video, use the firewire interfaces to expect any success at all. Spec-wise, USB 2.0 is "fast enough", but it can't sustain the data rates that video demands.

Scott
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 18, 2006 05:45PM
> My scratch disks are two 250gig LaCie external hard drives with USB 2.0 connections.

Thought so. Ditch the USB right now. It's 99 per cent no good with video. Never mind people telling you "USB 2.0 is faster than FireWire" nonsense. USB sends data in packets and will not keep up with live video. Switch to FireWire.

If you had captured using those drives with USB, chances are your clips are also captured wrong. You may have to recapture with at least a FireWire device.


www.derekmok.com
Anonymous User
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 19, 2006 10:26AM
Thanks very much for the info although it's not good news at all. The next question then... what kind of drives SHOULD I be using, aside from it being a firewire drive, what would you recommend if I need about 500 gigs of storage? And is it possible to rent external drives for a few weeks, or is it better to buy one?

I'm assuming that once I have good functioning drives I should then start all over and recapture everything, rather than try to transfer media from the USB drives to the new one? Or is it realistic to move the media from the USB drives over to the new drive(s)?

Thanks again for your help! - Stefani
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 19, 2006 10:34AM
Gtech firewire 800/400 they come in all sizws 250gigs and up.


Derek
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 19, 2006 10:38AM
Like everyone said USB drives are not even supported with FCP let alone good for video. An external FireWire Raid will do ya proud. That would be 2x250GB drives in one enclosure. G-Tech, ProMax and many other companies make them.

You can use Media Manager to move your files off the USB drives to whatever drives you buy.

Course you got to read up on "moving files using Media Manager. The manual is a good place to start.

If you are stuck for money and time, move the files to your system drive and complete the project. That is if you have enough room.

Michael Horton
-------------------
Anonymous User
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 19, 2006 11:22AM
Thanks. Not sure I can afford the FWRaid. I'll look into it. I'm looking for an inexpensive option that will work.

The G-5 I'm using has a FW 400 port. Will the Firewire 400 connection into the G-5 be fast enough? If I obtain two 250 GB drives that support Firewire 400/800 is it possible to daisychain the two drives with FW 800 and then connect to the G-5 with a 400 FW connection or does it all have to stay at a 400 FW connection? - Stefani
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 19, 2006 11:36AM
Stefani,

Are you certain that your current "USB" drives don't have a firewire interface? All the drives I've bought to use as firewire come with USB interfaces as well. Maybe the ones you have are only lacking a cable. Today is optimism day.

Scott
Anonymous User
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 19, 2006 11:40AM
I wish it was that simple Scott - but these drives have a USB port only. Today is the day to find new drives. - Stefani
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 19, 2006 11:45AM
You can daisy chain but it's hit or miss. If all you are doing is DV, then a FW drive is fine and FW 400 is fast enough.

Michael Horton
-------------------
Re: FCP Playback Problem
September 19, 2006 11:47AM
Scott is right -- most Lacies come with multiple interfaces, and one of the most popular combos is USB/FireWire. Check first before you buy more hardware.

*That* said, Lacies suck. Horrible performance reviews in general. If you use them, you better damn well have a bulletproof data backup system, because those suckers *will* fail.

> If I obtain two 250 GB drives that support Firewire 400/800 is it possible to daisychain the
> two drives with FW 800 and then connect to the G-5 with a 400 FW connection

You can do that, but a daisy chain is only as fast as its slowest connection. So if you do the above chain, your entire chain will operate at FireWire 400 speed. Which is fast enough for DV, so it's not a big issue.

> I'm looking for an inexpensive option that will work.

I see and hear this all the time and I'm going to suggest:

If you skimp on equipment now -- buying the cheapest Lacies, Maxtors for storage, for example -- you will pay for it later. Probably about 60 per cent of Lacies have a lifespan of about 12 to 24 months, especially when being used actively for video editing. Would you rather spend $300 on a 500GB Lacie drive that lasts you two years (or less -- some of them fail in three months), or would you rather spend $450 on a 500GB Promax drive, a brand which, having serviced me for six years, 16 drives and about 50 projects, hasn't produced a single instance of drive failure? To say nothing of the downtime and financial costs that will result if your cheap Best Buy/Circuit City equipment fails right in the middle of your deadline.

Pay the good money now, get the good equipment. You'll sleep better.


www.derekmok.com
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