Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but hours of work before the edit even gets started

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paulears
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How about this one. A world cruise, with on-board camera crew shooting documentary. The band get to know the cameraman and he shoots some material for them for their show reel. They do as requested and buy a nice USB external drive and he puts the material on it. I edit on PC, and soon discover the drive is formatted for a MAC. No problem, I'll transfer it on my macbook pro (I could edit on it, but don't want to). It's one big .mov file, so of course too big for a USB drive, or an SD card that the PCs can read. Transfer on the network, at 13Gb is going to take an eternity, so I use parallels to copy from the MAC OS to an external PC formatted drive. This works. I load the file into Premiere and the codec is missing. Back to the MAC and it's fine - although 1440x1080 at 29.97! So now I'm scratching my head thinking that I'm going to have to break the big file down into less than 4G chunks and export them from the MAC as a different format that the PC will be happy with. I don't usually have codec issues, and this is the first file I've been unable to read. So no idea why life is making me work hard for a very simple chop and compile edit. All I'm doing is removing the rubbish and topping and tailing - nothing complex at all, and just want to work on my usual system. Makes you mad, doesn't it.
 
I've no idea what camera it came from other than it was 'big' - musicians aren't the most descriptive people sometimes.
 
Has anyone any suggestions as to how I can find what codec I don't have - the clip info on the MAC doesn't seem odd at all?
FreeFlow
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
And people wonder why Mac guys don't want to use PC's! The Mac can read PC hard drives, so why can't a PC be made to read Mac drives? Why not just use your Mac?
paulears
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
Two big screens, bags of internal storage, lots of other PC software, nice video card, patch bays, and decent audio, and the Mac is, well, a nice laptop. 
PaulD
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
paulears wrote:
1440x1080 at 29.97!
Hi
HDV, 13GB is one hour approx. The Mac HDV codec is different from Windows HDV equivalents.
If they edited with Final Cut Express (or iMovie) it will be AIC (Apple Intermediate codec) which is about 42GB per hour. Meaning your movie would be just under 20 mins.
paulears
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
Oh - that doesn't work then - the length is fifty something minutes, and it's just under 13G. I've left it rendering it out to something PC friendlier - I've formatted a USB stick into NTFS which will let me move it, at least.
 
I wonder why they'd shoot in 29.97 when the other material they shot is definitely for UK production? However - looking at the material on the Mac, I have no idea what I'm going to do with it. The one I did for somebody else hardly contained a single shot where the camera was static, this is high quality material, but locked off on a tripod, with no audience and on camera sound - and they want it to look exciting. It's going to DVD, so I'll have a look how a cropped image holds up, so maybe I can create something with some movement? Hiding to nothing I think.
FreeFlow
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
Cant you install the Prores codec on your PC and use conversion software such as MPEG Streamclip to convert to that format (or indeed others) on the Mac? I've not had a problem in the past sending Prores clips to a friend with a PC for him to edit.
Gavin Gration
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
If you format external drives as exFAT then you can move large files around much more easily across Mac or Windows platforms.
 
More info including links on my blog.
 
 
Hope this helps.
paulears
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
Downloaded it and discovered I've already got it on the system, and a new version than the one downloaded - the conversion to an H264 as a mp4 didn't work very well - quality suffered. Any suggestions for other conversions to file types that won't mangle it so much? The Mac is running my old CS4, and I'm on CS5 on the PC.
 
 
EDIT - Thanks for the link to the file swap info - very handy. Cheers.
ChrisGill
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
If you download Macdrive you can read mac formatted drives easily on your PC, I use this all the time and works perfectly, it has 30 day trial so worth trying out.

Freelance Cameraman

www.tvv.co.uk/crewhire.htm

Gavin Gration
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
Apple Intermediate Codec is very difficult to edit or convert on a Windows machine without buying an expensive CODEC pack.
 
I can't even find a link now to the firm that made it - I do recall it didn't seem like good value.
 
The "free" workaround using "Super" is only works with older AIC files - and you risk getting a nastyware when installing Super.
 
Windows with Premiere CS5 works perfectly fine with all flavours of ProRes - big files but smooth as butter - no need to install anything extra.
paulears
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Re: Why are things so complicated - PC/MAC simple job - but ...
I've twiddled a little and now the mp4 and the .mov on the mac look close enough I need to read which is which, not do it by the image. This mp4 edits fine on the PC, so I'm up and running gents. The only disappointment is the source material is very weak - I've started the pre edit by chopping out the in betweens, which brought the running time down to 25 mins, and I've had to do my 'random' camerawork pre-edit. A track for wide, a track for close-ups, a track for slow zooms, and a track for potential cutaways. Looking at the time line - I've got far too much in the wide, too much in the slow zooms and not a lot in the others! 
 
Thanks for the help, folks!