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4:4:4 10bit SD from Da Vinco to Final Cut Pro with Machine Control


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#1 Charles Haine

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Posted 22 October 2007 - 04:32 PM

two questions for the forum.

I'm setting up a telecine system from an Ursa Diamond through a 4:4:4 Da Vinci, and would like to do direct to data through Final Cut Pro.

My two questions are this: are there solutions avaiable to run FCP like a deck, starting and stopping in the creation of files the way you might with a deck?

Also, I'm planning on running the 4:4:4 10bit data directly into through a Kona3 10bit 4:4:4 HD card; the only difference is that mine will be doing in dual-link SDI, not dual-link HD-SDI, as my data will be standard def.

Is there is a way to make this work?

thank you
Charles Haine
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#2 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 22 October 2007 - 05:31 PM

Sort of, but not easily.

There is at least one virtual VTR solution for the Mac, but unfortunately it isn't set up to emulate a VTR in the required manner.

There are plenty of turnkey devices available which will do it, but they're expensive.

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#3 Charles Haine

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Posted 23 October 2007 - 07:18 PM

Would you mind pointing me towards some names for the software so I can do more research and decide if it's worth the expense?

We're really aiming at direct-to-drive being our central business, and figuring out the VTR solution for Final Cut would go a lot way.

However, searching for Final Cut VTR and Deck Control brings up a lot of other solutions going the other way, but not in the direction we want to go in.

Thanks for whatever information you can provide.

Ch:H
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#4 Michael Most

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Posted 23 October 2007 - 07:41 PM

two questions for the forum.

I'm setting up a telecine system from an Ursa Diamond through a 4:4:4 Da Vinci, and would like to do direct to data through Final Cut Pro.

My two questions are this: are there solutions avaiable to run FCP like a deck, starting and stopping in the creation of files the way you might with a deck?

Also, I'm planning on running the 4:4:4 10bit data directly into through a Kona3 10bit 4:4:4 HD card; the only difference is that mine will be doing in dual-link SDI, not dual-link HD-SDI, as my data will be standard def.

Is there is a way to make this work?


Very short answer. No.

Slightly longer answer:
If you're not going to be going back and retransferring film, you don't actually need specific time code on these files. In that case, you could use Final Cut itself, starting your recording with "Capture Now" and ending it at the end of each shot or each lab roll. You could also use Virtual VTR in combination with a Midi controller and go into a "hard record" mode to capture in a similar manner. You can always assign or change the time code after transferring by identifying a particular frame and modifying the time code to be what you want. Of course, without edit control, if you're transferring in NTSC (i.e., you have 3:2 pulldown), which you would be if you're in the US or other NTSC country, you wouldn't be able to force your pulldown cadence without an actual edit controller - so you'll likely have to go to tape and then digitize, which is what the vast majority of facilities currently do for Macintosh based files. There are solutions on the PC side of the world - Drastic Technologies products and DVS's Clipster and Pronto lines are both Windows based, and Rave HD is Linux based, and all of them can act as VTR's under DaVinci's TLC control.
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#5 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 23 October 2007 - 10:10 PM

We're really aiming at direct-to-drive being our central business, and figuring out the VTR solution for Final Cut would go a lot way.



I have looked into this pretty extensively as we do allot of disk xfer at cinelab, I have a copy of Scopebox which will take timecode in (LTC through a horita box over 422) but does not act as a deck, I have thought of getting a DPS reality system online as it has deck emulation which is very good but I believe it is only 8bit (SDI) for SD. We currently do "free run" recording to SD 10bit over a decklink card all of these recordings are for video finish.


We have allot of customers who either do 16, S16 or 35mm SD dailies with keycode they are all either Dvcam, BetaSP or sometimes D-Beta (sometimes a clean and a burnin tape simul) it is really not worth it to try to make film matchback from SD disk recordings, just go to tape, all of the better solutions are for HD or better files and (like Clipster, Blurfish444, etc.) are priced appropriately or maybe as much or more than the URSA you got.

-Rob-
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#6 Fred Graffigne

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Posted 09 December 2007 - 07:13 AM

An what about using a dedicated capture card like with SDi or HD-SDi input, in conjunction with FCP ?
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#7 John Brawley

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Posted 09 December 2007 - 04:21 PM

two questions for the forum.

I'm setting up a telecine system from an Ursa Diamond through a 4:4:4 Da Vinci, and would like to do direct to data through Final Cut Pro.

My two questions are this: are there solutions avaiable to run FCP like a deck, starting and stopping in the creation of files the way you might with a deck?


I seem to recall that there was a stand-alone app with the early voodoo cards. Grant then split and went on to start another company, Black Magic Design. I haven't seen him for a while, but he used to have a Virtual VTR app that captured and recorded quicktimes to disk and back to a deck. The QT's are then easily imported into FCP. I think it was called Media Transfer ?

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#8 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 09 December 2007 - 05:33 PM

An what about using a dedicated capture card like with SDi or HD-SDi input, in conjunction with FCP ?



FCP will not take in timecode from the keycode reader, nor can it be controlled like a deck by a TLC so there will be no sync to the flex files, you can do direct capture over SDI as we do in our telecine suites but the timecode is free-run. There are 2 solutions available now to ingest uncompressed sdi with timecode. The first is VVTR with the LTC option at around $2k for software and timecode support, and then uses your G5/MacPro and Decklink card, the second solution is Scopebox with the Horita TCI-50 LTC to 9pin translator box and the G5/MacPro/Decklink combo.

VVTR will act as a deck for the TLC and seems to be the most robust solution but is a bit expensive, Scopebox is free run recordings with timecode which may be more of a hack but seems like it would work, I have Scopebox now and we are going to get the Horita box shortly so I can post again after I hook it up to the Telecine and Aaton Keylink keycode reader...

-Rob-
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#9 Michael Most

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Posted 09 December 2007 - 07:17 PM

VVTR will act as a deck for the TLC and seems to be the most robust solution but is a bit expensive


Not in the way you probably think. The only way to control Virtual VTR as a recorder is to give it "hard record" commands. It will not synthesize time code during an edit preroll, as a true VTR emulator such as Rave HD, Clipster, or Drastic QuickClip will. You can get full transport control via RS422 for playback, but not for record. In our case, we use a simple MIDI footswitch controller to "kick it" into record.

One of the problems with doing VTR emulation on a Mac is its almost total reliance on Quicktime. Most of the PC based devices I mentioned record file sequences, DPX being the most common. They then transcode to movie formats. This makes it possible to do "editing", since you're basically overwriting existing files, but leaving the existing frames outside of your edit range intact. Movie formats do not allow editing - the entire file must be overwritten. Nonlinear systems, of course, get around this because you're always doing "virtual" timeline playback. You're not "recording" anything, so you're not trying to change your existing source files. The only hardware I know of for the Mac that even allows sequential file recording is the Kona 3, and even with that card, it's not talked about very much. Unfortunately, what most clients really want is Quicktime files, so the only way to satisfy that is by either "hard recording", or by digitizing from some other medium (tape, or perhaps one of the PC based devices I mentioned). Unless and until someone makes a "VTR emulator" front end for the Kona 3 in DPX sequential mode that won't change. And even if such software was available, it would still require a transcode to make self contained Quicktime files.
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#10 Paul Bruening

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Posted 09 December 2007 - 08:09 PM

Mac's.
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#11 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 09 December 2007 - 10:07 PM

Mac's.



Computers.....

I thought about setting up a DPS system the deck emulation with the reality software is really good, I think some Avid's have virtual deck control and of course more hi end solutions like clipster, etc. are great.

I am not one who thinks FCP and or the Mac is the only answer, I find FCP clumsy to edit with on a number of levels and the lack of a cheap DDR on the mac is a problem.

For sync to FLEX files with LTC coming from a Keylink I think free run recording with LTC timecode will match tape timecode close enough for the purpose. I would hesitate to edit from a disk recording for film matchback and negative cut but it would be fine for building scan reels with handles which need to be conformed and the advantage of uncompressed 10bit files is worth it for a good looking video cut to show.
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#12 Michael Most

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Posted 10 December 2007 - 09:23 AM

I thought about setting up a DPS system the deck emulation with the reality software is really good, I think some Avid's have virtual deck control and of course more hi end solutions like clipster, etc. are great.

I am not one who thinks FCP and or the Mac is the only answer, I find FCP clumsy to edit with on a number of levels and the lack of a cheap DDR on the mac is a problem.


You really should look at Spectsoft RaveHD.

For sync to FLEX files with LTC coming from a Keylink I think free run recording with LTC timecode will match tape timecode close enough for the purpose. I would hesitate to edit from a disk recording for film matchback and negative cut but it would be fine for building scan reels with handles which need to be conformed and the advantage of uncompressed 10bit files is worth it for a good looking video cut to show.


It's a very simple matter to change time code on a Quicktime file within Final Cut. If you have a known time code ID frame (a punch is the most obvious), select the file in the Final Cut browser and pull down "Modify->Timecode." Go to the punch frame, tell it the proper time code number and format, and identify it as "this frame." That's it. The file on disk is restamped with the proper time code, and it will now match whatever your Flex or ALE file has. We check any files we record wild and correct accordingly before we send them out. You have to prevent clients from hurting themselves....
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#13 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 12 December 2007 - 12:41 AM

You really should look at Spectsoft RaveHD.



It's a very simple matter to change time code on a Quicktime file within Final Cut. If you have a known time code ID frame (a punch is the most obvious), select the file in the Final Cut browser and pull down "Modify->Timecode." Go to the punch frame, tell it the proper time code number and format, and identify it as "this frame." That's it. The file on disk is restamped with the proper time code, and it will now match whatever your Flex or ALE file has. We check any files we record wild and correct accordingly before we send them out. You have to prevent clients from hurting themselves....



This is really good to know Mike, I am trying to setup a fix for a messy post start on a feature I am shooting, about half of the 300 rolls of Super16 have been transfered to D-Beta in 4:3 letterbox I was not in on this decision but that is film making and it worked at the time. I was wanting to make Flex files from my keylink and have 10bit 16:9 SD files to edit with so a simple timecode in to a quicktime recorder with free run record with LTC and hour 1 at the first "k" frame.

Sounds like a intern torture job setting tc for every flat...

rob
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