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First time use of the 550d has ended in disaster somewhat


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#1 Chris Lambert

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Posted 20 July 2011 - 11:13 AM

Hello All

I recently purchased a Canon 550d (t2i I believe in the states) basically the first shoot I was using this on has ended in disaster the 550d was the safety cam on a wedding I was filming, I shot two cards and filled the pair. All seemed fine until upon looking at the footage back on the PC a few days later I realised that all except the first 2-3 clips on each card were corrupt with both quicktime and vlc player refusing to play them. What could have caused this? I was using Sandisk Extreme 30mbps class 10 cards as well as a Transcend class 10 card but the problem seems to have occurred on both.

Now what I am wondering as an Sony EX3 user is if I had a moment of stupidity and ejected one of the cards mid shooting or me ficking the off switch on the camera once the screen had gone dark had triggered this I have tried replicating this but so far have not had any success though I was trying to replicate it on one of the Sandisk Extreme Pro Cards (45mbps) which makes me think that card speed could be the issue though I thought the 550d wrote at about 3-4mbps so the 30 of the card should leave plenty of room as the EX3 hasn't struggled with those cards.

Could workflow in post be the issue as with the EX3 we would use XDCAM clip browser to copy the contents should I be using Canon or similar software to do this? On the day I just copied the contents of the folder to the HDD assuming as the files are all contained in one file this wouldnt loose any metadata.

I have had some success with Video Repair tool (demo version) but this seems for the later clips on the card to turn them into one identical file, though other ones appear salvageable but obviously knowing you have a 3 in 8 chance of a clip working is not exactly great.

Luckily this was a three camera shoot so all should be saved ok, but i'd obviously rather replicate and learn before i next run into anything similar otherwise seems a nice little camera for the price but can't believe I have run into so many problems on something this basic!

Shooting format was 1920x1080 25p no photos were taken on the card
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#2 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 20 July 2011 - 12:31 PM

Try copying them off again, using a decent desktop computer (not a macbook) with a decent card reader - not something you got for £5 from Ebuyer. I've had corrupted clips that just went away when re-copied. And no, you don't need to use some fancy manufacturer's utility - they really are completely pointless, all they do is replicate what the OS does by default and cause additional grief and confusion. They're just files. Copy them.

If they're really corrupted on the card, you are stuffed, and emphasis moves to identifying the culprit so it doesn't happen again. Do some tests with other large files and see if the cards will tolerate those. If the files get wrecked, replace the card. You say you've struggled to replicate this with the camera but you might try some other tests. If the camera is wrecking its own files, get it fixed.

I would normally be tempted to put this down to bad luck - it very occasionally happens to the best of us - but this issue of the first few on each card is alarming.

Finally, and it's an odd thought, have you looked very carefully and closely at the cards you have to see if they're genuine? There's an epidemic of counterfeit flash at the moment, especially with online deals, which can reportedly cause these sorts of problems. Compare your cards with photos of known good types.



P
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#3 Chris Lambert

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Posted 20 July 2011 - 02:36 PM

Hi Phil

Thanks for the reply I bought the cards off of Amazon one of their trusted resellers £30 each and one of the cards that played up was bought directly from them I believe but that was just a crappy transcend which i try to steer well clear off but stupidly thought on this occasion I'd be ok
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#4 John Mastrogiacomo

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Posted 20 July 2011 - 03:14 PM

Have you tried playing the clips in your camera?

I always copy my 550D clips right from the camera with a USB cable.
I haven't lost a clip yet (over a year).
I use Sandisk Extreme and Transcend class 10 SD cards.

You should always checks clips after your shot whenever you have time.
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#5 Chris Lambert

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Posted 20 July 2011 - 03:59 PM

i copied the contents back to a card and only one of the clips is showing but that was also the one which was playing in the PC. video repair tool v1.61 seems to have some success with the first sequential tracks and then all the info it salvages it gives the same footage too otherwise i'd happily cough up the £100 it costs for the future awaiting to hear what they think as obviously some of it is recoverable.

downside is I have another this saturday so really need to get my ahead around this asap
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#6 Chris Lambert

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 06:33 PM

I have managed to replicate it too a point I basically shot on a series of cards and copied and pasted them to a folder on my Windows Vista machine... I didnt do anything crazy like cut off during recording etc just do my best to use the camera as much as possible in continuous bursts and one of the clips showed as corrupt. This has led me to believe it could be Vista doing this, my win7 netbook died 2 weeks outside of warranty a few weeks ago and was using it as a legit workaround until i could afford better seems to be most likely answer thhus far as clips still worked in camera. And when i decided the test was complete and sent the files to the recycle bin only to promptly change my mind only the .mov files were copied back not any jpegs I took to put some more strain on the card. The comp then promptly blue screened and the jpegs were never seen again...


Moral of this story buy a mac, and if you cant afford one. steal a mac.
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#7 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 23 July 2011 - 03:57 AM

What type of card reader are you using, and what type of computer?

The only time I've seen this was when we tried to do field offloads on a tiny Asus laptop with a very cheap card reader. Ultimately we ended up offloading everything twice and keeping two copies, and even then there were some takes that managed to end up corrupted on both passes.

I hear a lot about this sort of thing happening on laptops, invariably macbooks as everyone seems to buy them as if they're some sort of legitimate postproduction tool. I'm not convinced any laptop is a great way to go for this sort of critical work, or at least if you absolutely must, run it from a car via a mains inverter.
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#8 Chris Lambert

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 07:57 AM

It was a card reader on a Dell Vostro running Win Vista... (i know.) basically my win7 netbook died several weeks ago and im using it as a workaround while i debate what to purchase next.

The card reader was an internal one and has never been a problem for anything else including my EX3 file transfers, it seems to work ok transferring like this on windows xp desktop which makes me think it could be vista
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#9 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 25 July 2011 - 08:33 AM

Hrm. I've used internal card readers quite a bit without incident.

If you can't make it do it again, I suspect all you can do is put it down to experience and move on.

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#10 Chris Lambert

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Posted 27 July 2011 - 09:28 AM

Hrm. I've used internal card readers quite a bit without incident.

If you can't make it do it again, I suspect all you can do is put it down to experience and move on.

P


have managed to do it once copying 3 full sd cards onto vista, the clips still played in camera. looks like I will always have to check the files all play on comp before any formats in future. sucks for the clips that are lost though as even though it was only a C camera having to explain to a client why those files dont work is not going to be a fun experience
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#11 Will Earl

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Posted 28 July 2011 - 11:13 AM

Instead of using the card reader - have you tried transferring clips from the camera to computer via usb cable?
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#12 Chris Lambert

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 04:52 PM

I haven't no, but seeing as how i've only used non windows vista systems since then i haven't encountered this problem once! in several weeks of filming, just wish i could recover those damaged files.
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#13 Markshaw

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Posted 01 September 2011 - 12:43 AM

I don't have a fancy DSLR, but I have had problems when I remove the card and place into my MBP. Now I access the files directly off the camera via USB rather than remove the SD Card. I have had no issues using this system.
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#14 Adrian Samuals

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 04:44 AM

I've had about half a dozen memory cards die on me after taking them out of a camera. These were different cameras, so it wasn't specific to one camera. I have also had cards fail after taking them out of my laptop, even though I do it by the book ie; eject it.

Edited by Adrian Samuals, 06 September 2011 - 04:45 AM.

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#15 Brian Hulnick

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Posted 15 September 2011 - 09:00 AM

I only transfer via USB now. It's very risky continually removing that fragile card.
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