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STORAGE, WORKFLOW, CODEC advice needed

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  • STORAGE, WORKFLOW, CODEC advice needed

    I'm starting a feature length documentary shooting 1920 x 1080 AVCHD files on a Hacked Lumix GH1, editing in FCP 7.0.3 with Zoom H4n audio. I estimate we'll be shooting between 60 - 100 hours of material. I want to plan for wide distribution: broadcast, DVD, web, possibly even transfer to film.

    For the initial stages I'm working on a very limited budget. HARD DRIVE STORAGE SPACE is a MAJOR concern. Do you advocate ingesting as PROXY, then re-ingesting via Media Manager with ProRes or ProRes (HQ) for final output? Everyone seems to have a different opinion on this. I've never done this before and it sounds daunting.

    I made a codec comparison test which I burned to DVD that produced the following results for the same small test clip --

    Apple ProRes 422 (PROXY) - file size: 508.2 MB
    Apple ProRes 422 (LT) - file size: 1.23 GB
    Apple ProRes 422 - file size: 1.67 GB
    Apple ProRes 422 (HQ) - file size: 2.59 GB
    Apple ProRes 4444 - Log & Transfer didn't list this as an option (why?)

    As you can see, there's quite a range size-wise. Visually however, I COULD HARDLY TELL THEM APART. Despite the fact that storage space is of the utmost importance I also absolutely want this to look AS GOOD AS IT POSSIBLY CAN.

    Any thoughts?

  • #2
    In consideration of your source footage there is no point in going beyond ProRes 422 (LT).
    sigpic
    Eric Peterson (AKA, "Zwick")
    Person in charge
    Content creation/Education
    http://www.ericnp.net

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    • #3
      Storage, Workflow

      I'm told a mirrored RAID system for RAW backup and another faster drive for rushes is the way to go. I'm considering this one --

      http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboD...t=Combo.607117

      Any thoughts on this? I've never worked with a RAID tower before. Which format would you suggest going with?

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      • #4
        What's your Mac?

        EDIT: Best you do a little research on that Sans Digital box. On the NewEgg site 7 out of 24 (29%) give it a one egg rating. In a Google search I'm finding other issues.
        Last edited by Zwick; 02-23-2011, 06:19 PM.
        sigpic
        Eric Peterson (AKA, "Zwick")
        Person in charge
        Content creation/Education
        http://www.ericnp.net

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        • #5
          iMac, 3.06 Ghz, 10.5.8

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          • #6
            Unless you have done a 3rd party modification to your iMac adding an eSATA port, you have no way of using that Sans Digital box and it's a good thing because it looks to me as though that thing is a piece of crap. I don't recommend FW RAID solutions and unless your running simultaneous streams of ProRes422, there's little point to running a RAID. If you're looking for additional storage you may want to consider something like this, running as JBOD.
            sigpic
            Eric Peterson (AKA, "Zwick")
            Person in charge
            Content creation/Education
            http://www.ericnp.net

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            • #7
              If storage is a huge factor, and it appears here to be, go with MacGurus for storage.

              Best, most knowledgeable, people in the business.
              David
              2-pop Guide

              A New Blog About Video
              secondchairvideo
              http://www.secondchairvideo.com/

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              • #8
                Thanks for the heads up David, I've contacted MacGurus. Curious if you'd recommend a RAID tower setup or daisy-chaining drives together? Which is more efficient and why? I've never worked with either of these or this much footage.

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                • #9
                  RAID storage is requirement of high-bandwidth video and redundancy. Redundancy taking a hit on speed. You're not dealing with that, you're transcoding AVCHD to a medium bandwidth ProRes CODEC, that's 145 Mbps (HQ is overkill and is 220 Mbps). This doesn't require the speed advantage you're looking at with a RAID system. FW RAID also not being a good option (said this already.) You are putting a 17 Mbps data rate from the GH1 into a 145 Mbps pipe. More than adequate. Firewire 800 is 800 Mbps, again, more than adequate. So, as I mentioned before, look into a FW JBOD.

                  Here's some reading material:

                  Apple ProRes 422 White Paper (will download a PDF)
                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAID
                  http://www.firewire-1394.com/what-is-firewire-800.htm
                  Last edited by Zwick; 02-25-2011, 05:00 PM.
                  sigpic
                  Eric Peterson (AKA, "Zwick")
                  Person in charge
                  Content creation/Education
                  http://www.ericnp.net

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