XDCam HD

Posted by Eddietor 
XDCam HD
September 11, 2008 05:56PM
Next week I will be at the scene of Hurricane Ike, producing a few short news reports on my laptop. I will be with a cameraman who will be shooting XDCam HD. I have FCP version 6 and a 1.5 TB external drive. I've never edited XDCam HD footage before. What else might I need (other than an umbrella)? Codec?

Thanks,

Eddie Roman
romanproductions.com
Re: XDCam HD
September 11, 2008 06:44PM
XDCAM TRANSFER installed on your MAC. Maybe an XDCAM VTR.
Re: XDCam HD
September 11, 2008 08:22PM
you can ingest directly from the camera too if it's available...
Re: XDCam HD
September 11, 2008 10:16PM
Yeah, once you have the transfer software installed it's pretty easy. Just go to File > Import > XDCAM and this will open a specialist transfer program. use this program to select the clips you want to ingest, and hit 'import'. Check the preferences first for things like how many audio channels you want to import and where the files will be stored on your system.

The import is fast and the clips should automatically appear in your browser.

I'm cuttng in ProRes right now, but we've only just begun these tests, so I can't offer too much info on alternate codecs. we did do one 50 second capture at uncompressed 10 bit, and it came in a 1.2GB, which is a pretty big consideration, depending on your storage.

Re: XDCam HD
September 11, 2008 11:55PM
Yep, good tip ... the XDCAM Transfer app (XDT) preferences window (General tab) let you set how many audio channels you want to monitor by default (you can override this on a clip by clip basis of course) plus, importantly, there is a preference (Import tab) to "Only import monitored audio channels". Again, as Jude mentions, make sure you correctly set your Import Location (as opposed to the Cache Location) to your media drive ... the app does not read or respect your Scratch Disk settings in FCP (Apple don't provide that info to a third party app so XDT can't know what those settings are).

If you're working on fast turnaround then you might want to dump all the disk contents to your media drive without pre logging and/or clip selection... if that's the case then I'd recommend disabling the "Automatically Fetch Proxies" preference (Cache tab) as this mean clips are ready for import much faster. (Cmd - Option - I is the shortcut for Import All) ... you can import the proxies to the XDT database for later reference after the fact if wanted or needed (File > Fetch Proxies for Source).

If your cameraman is working with a newer camera (or at least firmware upgraded) then they might want to enable Clip Continuos REC mode in camera. This means that when they button on/off the recording clip will not be broken into separate clips, rather it will build as a single clip entity (although an essence marker will be added to the clip at each start/stop point). This means that when you import to FCP/XDT then there will be only a single clip for each "reel" which can be easier to handle than hundreds of smaller clips (note, when you do this, the essence marks transfer to FCP as clip markers so you have instant access to every start/stop point and/or can quickly and easily make subclips ... very cool).

If you don't use the Clip Continuous mode then you might want to consider dropping your imported clips into select reel sequences which you can then use as your virtual source clips. This is often much easier than searching through many multiples of smaller clips. If you do this (and if you haven''t already) I'd suggest remapping the basic FCP Insert (F9) and Overwrite (F10) keys with their Insert/Overwrite with Sequence counterparts (Cmd-F9 and Cmd-F10).

For editing, if you will export back to XDCAM HD disc then your best bet is to edit native with the appropriate XDCAM HD codec, but do remember to set the render codec to ProRes (Sequence Settings > Render Controls tab) ... if you can swing it an MXO is a godsend device for getting your XDHD edit back to disc without conform (if you have an appropriate deck) and/or getting a quick and clean downconvert at a feed point straight from the timeline.
Re: XDCam HD
September 12, 2008 04:27AM
Oh, and also you might need to upgrade to 6.0.4. We had 6.0.1 (I think) and the codecs weren't installed.

Re: XDCam HD
September 12, 2008 04:46AM
>>when they button on/off the recording clip will not be broken into separate clips, rather it will build as a single clip entity (although an essence marker will be added to the clip at each start/stop point).<<

Andy - that's a brilliant tip! Thanks smiling smiley

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