Latest post Mon, Jan 7 2013 1:19 PM by Pat Horridge. 25 replies.
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  • Thu, Dec 27 2012 10:11 PM

    • jmnyc
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    AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    I'm getting my head around AMA workflows with XDCAM HD media on Avid MC 6.5 on Mac OS 10.8.2.

    I'm finding there's a lot of voodoo involved, and there is a near lack of complete documentation regarding proper workflows. I've seen bits and pieces here and there, but most of the documentation I've seen refers to older versions of the application. Not here to necessarily criticize, but I'm a bit surprised at how poor the overall knowledge base for Avid is documented. Thank god for these forums.

    But I've encountered a bug (or um, idiosyncracy?) of working with AMA, but there might be something wrong with my workflow and I'd love a second set of eyes on this, as I'm about to embark on a large project that will probably total 100+ hours of footage shot on XDCAM HD onto SxS cards.

    Here's what I tested today. Aside from my system drive, I have a total of two drives: one that stores my native card media, and one for my Avid MediaFiles folder:

    DRIVE A:

    -- XDCAM CARD 1 (complete file structure)

    -- XDCAM CARD 2

    -- XDCAM CARD 3

    -- etc

    DRIVE B:

    -- Avid MediaFiles

    To test an offline/online workflow, I did the following:

    1) Started a new HD project

    2) Linked to my three cards via File > Link to AMA Volume, resulting in three bins -- one for each card.

    3) I transcoded all the cards' footage as DNxHD 36 onto DRIVE B. So far so good. All media plays back correctly, and "Reveal File" shows things to be in their respective correct places.

    4) I created a new bin called "Edit Footage" and moved all the ".new" files into this folder. I did some basic logging and renaming to simulate a real work environment.

    5) I created a new sequence title "My Edit", cutting in some of the clips from step 4.

    6) Again -- so far so good. Everything plays back well.

    7) ... BUT (and you probably saw this coming) I next selected "My Edit" and its related footage and tried relinking back to the media in DRIVE A, with the presumption that i could take my edit and relink back to the native XDCAM HD footage. I can tell you that no matter what combination of the (inscrutable) choices I tried in the Relink dialogue box -- and I tried every permutation, even made a little spreadsheet to make sure that I covered them all -- I could NOT get my footage to relink back to my card media.

    Is this the ever-lauded media management feature of Avid? Seriously? Years of NLE evolution has led us to this?

    I read for hours through this forum and others and tried various workarounds, and I'm surprised that I can't do what should be a totally turnkey, simple, idiot-proof task, even to a relative newcomer. And I'm even more surprised that there isn't a "If you want to do this, then push this button" level of media management in Avid. This clearly needs to be simplified. Avid, you really need to get your act together on this. We are editors, not engineers.

    But wait -- the story has a sort-of happy ending:

    As a last resort, I took DRIVE B offline and then tried relinking to the media in DRIVE A. Still, no dice. 

    Then I punted: I left DRIVE B offline and I selected "All Available Drives" instead of "DRIVE A". And lo and behold, it worked. All my clips linked back up to the card media.

    So, this is what I'm getting at -- am I doing something dumb here, or is relinking in Avid Just. Plain. Silly. Broken?

    Avid, if you are so smart to be able to use Reveal File and find me the clips on my hard drive, why, oh why, can't you relink to them just as easily?

    And why is it that I cannot specify DRIVE A and have my media relink properly? I mean, I am a native English speaker and I'm fairly certain that specifying DRIVE A means that Avid should find my media in DRIVE A, no? Is that too much to ask? I repeated this whole test twice just to make sure I wasn't doing something wrong, and it repeated in the exact same way. 

    What voodoo is at work here?

    --

    Avid Media Composer Mac 6.5.2 / OS 10.8.2

    2.66GHz Quad-Core Xeon 8GB RAM & ATI Radeon HD 4870 512MB

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  • Thu, Dec 27 2012 10:19 PM In reply to

    • jef
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    I can not answer any of your "Why?" questions.  But I can confirm that this is a "normal" behavior.  There are other such anomalies.  But your last line is most on the mark.  Voodoo is involved.

    Good luck,

    Jef 

    Avid DS 11.0.2 R.I.P | MC "Well, it depends ..." 2023.3.1 iMac w Big Sur and 2018.12.7 on Windows 10 Boot Camp [view my complete system specs]

    _____________________________________________

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    Senior Editor

  • Thu, Dec 27 2012 10:21 PM In reply to

    • Strypes
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    I'm on MC6 so this could be slightly different. So far, to relink, the related Avid media needs to be hidden from Avid. And usually I need to bring all the AMA clips back into MC, by creating a new bin and AMA linking to all the files used in the edit. Then I can re-link.

  • Thu, Dec 27 2012 10:23 PM In reply to

    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    I'm one of a number asking for more clarity and ease of use in the re-linking process. AMA re-linking seems to be treated as an addition to the long tried and tested Avide Media managed re-linking.

    So we are only slowly seeing proper AMA functionality coming along.

    There are many options in teh current re-linking dialogue that just don;t make sense to users.

    The drive specification seems to force Avid to look only at Avid Media files so any AMA structures are ignored (where as all drives seems to allow them to be seen)

    It defaults to media from current project but AMA sources belong to no project so this is an automatic fail.

    If you select a specific resolution that matches the AMA sources and try to force the re-link to that then it will also fail.

    However once you know the options to select and the ones to not select it can work really well.

    I run a cource at VET over 2 days that deals with this in detail and we unpick all these areas.

    One key step is to "hide" your DNX36 media before you re-link. In fact hide all Avid Media to be safe.

    Really hoping we get a really useful sensible next step in the re-linking dialogue and process and see AMA properly integrated into MC.

     

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    Broadcast & Post Production Consultant / Trainer  Avid Certified Instructor VET (Retired Early 2022)

     

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  • Thu, Dec 27 2012 10:34 PM In reply to

    • jmnyc
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    Pat Horridge:

    However once you know the options to select and the ones to not select it can work really well.

    ...

    One key step is to "hide" your DNX36 media before you re-link. In fact hide all Avid Media to be safe.

    Really hoping we get a really useful sensible next step in the re-linking dialogue and process and see AMA properly integrated into MC.

     

    I think this is the most valuable thing I learned today.

    I spent several hours chasing down the whole idea whether or not it's safe to edit with ".new" files -- I discovered that is, in fact, a red herring. As far as I can tell, what matters most is to trick Avid (using a very kludge-y workaround, this whole thing of taking drives offline) into believing that nothing but AMA media exists, and asking it to brute-force search for the files.

    I thought there was some magic sauce, and that Avid and its invincible databases and lofty media management was tracking all my AMA files, ready to relink at the snap of my finders. This is what many people lead me to believe: that Avid was THE best NLE when it comes to media management. This might very well be true, but it speaks more to the competition than to Avid's merits.

    Sorry to vent here, but really... this is pretty lame. 

    --

    Avid Media Composer Mac 6.5.2 / OS 10.8.2

    2.66GHz Quad-Core Xeon 8GB RAM & ATI Radeon HD 4870 512MB

  • Thu, Dec 27 2012 11:02 PM In reply to

    • Strypes
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    But what's up with having to re-import (link to AMA files) all the AMA footage? 


    I mean, I was testing the re-linking, and I had 3 AMA ProRes Proxy clips in one bin, a sequence with 3 cuts and a dissolve, and a bunch of offline DNxHD36 clips. I couldn't re-link with any of the options until I brought all the footage back into Avid. That seemed to remind Avid that those clips exist.

  • Thu, Dec 27 2012 11:16 PM In reply to

    • Strypes
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

     

    Speaking about AMA, in FCP7, there was one thing I liked about the way it re-ingested tape less formats. Not sure if you can do this in MC. Let's say you have an offline cut from an AMA source, and the Avid media is all offline. And your source camera rushes are all scattered across some 10 external hard drives. 


    In FCP7, I can just click batch capture and log and transfer will ask me to mount the source magazines one by one, so this lets me re-ingest mag by mag (effectively drive by drive) to Quicktime. Does AMA re-linking and consolidate work in that same way, or do I need to find one large drive to store ALL the AMA clips before I can re-link and consolidate/transcode?

     

     

  • Fri, Dec 28 2012 3:55 PM In reply to

    • jmnyc
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    Strypes:

    In FCP7, I can just click batch capture and log and transfer will ask me to mount the source magazines one by one, so this lets me re-ingest mag by mag (effectively drive by drive) to Quicktime. Does AMA re-linking and consolidate work in that same way, or do I need to find one large drive to store ALL the AMA clips before I can re-link and consolidate/transcode?

    Someone with more experience might correct me, but AMA will not prompt you in the same way. However I believe that if you have automounting turned on, as long as you have the drives online before you start up Avid, your AMA media should come back online.

    But the bigger issue is editing with AMA media itself -- you should not do an offline cut with AMA with anything other than short edits and a limited amount of media, and even then, only if you are under broadcast new deadlines.

    Editing anything longform with AMA is a big bag of hurt. At least that much I know from firsthand experience.

    --

    Avid Media Composer Mac 6.5.2 / OS 10.8.2

    2.66GHz Quad-Core Xeon 8GB RAM & ATI Radeon HD 4870 512MB

  • Fri, Dec 28 2012 6:29 PM In reply to

    • Strypes
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    >Editing anything longform with AMA is a big bag of hurt. At least that much I know from firsthand

    >experience.

     

    Yea. I've been through some AMA troubleshooting myself. Not cool.

     

    I'm not talking about editing AMA. I'm saying that let's say I am doing an edit in DNxHD36 and I have my source camera files scattered across some 10-12 drives. What's the best approach to getting everything high rez?

  • Fri, Dec 28 2012 7:25 PM In reply to

    • shayok
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    I do Batch Import. The interface is quite helpful in letting you point to a folder for a group of camera files.

    Avid MC 8.5.3, macOS Mojave, MacBook Pro, 16 GB ram, Intel 2.7 GHz i7 quad core, Graphics cards: Radeon Pro 455 2048 MB, Intel HD Graphics 530 1536 MB [view my complete system specs]
  • Fri, Dec 28 2012 8:12 PM In reply to

    • Strypes
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    I see. But I thought you can only batch import certain types of files?

  • Fri, Dec 28 2012 8:19 PM In reply to

    • jef
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    shayok:

    I do Batch Import. The interface is quite helpful in letting you point to a folder for a group of camera files.

    The problem wih Batch Import is the Import tool.  It uses an inferior image processing tool.  With all it's issues, AMA is a much better way to convert media to Avid media.  Both in speed and color accuracy as well some conversion tricks only available when doing a transcode.  I would go through the pain necessary to re-link via AMA to have the AMA Transcode / Consolidate tools.

    Jef

    Avid DS 11.0.2 R.I.P | MC "Well, it depends ..." 2023.3.1 iMac w Big Sur and 2018.12.7 on Windows 10 Boot Camp [view my complete system specs]

    _____________________________________________

    Jef Huey

    Senior Editor

  • Fri, Dec 28 2012 10:03 PM In reply to

    • Strypes
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    Thanks. Good to know.

  • Fri, Dec 28 2012 11:41 PM In reply to

    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    Remember Avids media managment and media robustness is based on working with Avid media files in the Avid media files folders. AMA is outside that and was added to allow faster access to source media without having to import (and therefore normally convert) the media.

    But that immediate access comes at a cost and that cost is less robust media management.

    But things could and hopefully will get better when Avid integrates the AMA management into the current tools better.

    At the moment we all have to work the dance to get it to do what we need until Avid refine the tool.

    But with each release things improve. V6.5.2 is already better than 6.0 was.

    HP Z840 3.1GHZ 20cores 128GB RAM M4000 GPU 1TB NVMe drive HP Z book 17 G2 2.7GHZ Quad core 32GB RAM Nvidia K3100M 1TB SSD drive ACI Moderator. I'm... [view my complete system specs]

     

    Broadcast & Post Production Consultant / Trainer  Avid Certified Instructor VET (Retired Early 2022)

     

    Still offering training and support for: QC/QAR Training - Understanding Digital Media - Advanced Files * Compression - Avid Ingest - PSE fixing courses and more.

    Mainly delivered remotely via zoom but onsite possible.

     

    T 07581 201248 | E [email protected]

     

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  • Fri, Jan 4 2013 10:29 PM In reply to

    • rdmartin
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    Re: AMA relink only works w "All Available Drives" selected XDCAM HD

    Hello All,

     

    I am horribly confused. I just transferred a project and all its master audio and video clips to a new G-Drive. I open the project now from this new drive and it say all the modia is offline. The master audio and video, the sequences, and synced audio/video subclips.

     

    I do NOT have qt files from xdcams though. It is simply two master video files.

    Quicktime. Codec: Apple ProRes 422, Timecode

    these were two massive files representing the digitized footage of 16mm

    These were transcoded into MXF 35mbits files.

    For audio:

    Tons of individual .WAV clips that were synced and subclipped with the cut up takes from the two QT.mov

    Also, numerous foley/adr sound effect (AIF, CAF, and SoundDesigner II Files) taken and imported from numerous libraries.

     

    Looking in my bins all the files list the name of the old external drive that they were originally placed in.

    Can someone please outline percisely the steps that need to be taken to relink media that has been transferred to new external drive where the project is being opened from this new drive as well???

    I've seen talks about batch import, creating new bins, or renaming/indexing folders for your media but can't seem to find a tutorial or anything that lists the steps and which one of these methods pertains to my situation.

     

     

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