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Little Frog in High Def

Adventures in Editing
Little Frog In High Def


Archive for February, 2007

Well, we got press en Español at least for the Mexican American War. Nice promo…

Tease, en Español!

So I am cutting a scene and cannot find a section that is in the script…Sam Houston dragged from the field, wounded. “OK,” I say to myself. “They just didn’t shoot that and wanted me to just edit more battle footage. Odd, but…OK.” So I am cutting along when I see at the tail end of a clip, Sam Houston wounded on the ground and men poised to drag him from the field…but only 3 seconds. So I look in my Dailies bin and sure enough, there is a hole in the TC. One clip ends at 6:13:49:00 and the next one starts at 6:18:38:00. I am missing 5 min.

And I know what happened. I caught myself doing it a few times. I marked IN and OUT and named the clip, BUT DIDN’T HIT “LOG CLIP.” So I just moved on, marked IN and OUT and logged the NEXT clip. GAH.

So…I can’t do a darned thing except put a bit of text that says FOOTAGE TO COME: SAM HOUSTON DRAGGED FROM FIELD. When the next batch of footage comes in (thank goodness there is a next batch) then I can capture that part.

BUT…If I had only P2 footage to worry about, I’d simply plug in the drive with all MXF backups and import the missing one. But with the Varicam footage, I have to rent a deck and go pick it up, then use it, drop it off. Time consuming and costing money.

So…to steal a tennis phrase…”Advantage HVX.”

I always wanted to have something named after me. Like “the Ken Burns Effect” (which HE didn’t invent, BTW), so I guess I can try to coin this P2 workflow from the field to archiving as “the Shane Method,” since I figured it out. Or am I being too full of myself?

ANYWAY…Here it is, in a nutshell.

In the field, copy from the P2 card (or Firestore if that is your device) to external FIELD drives. Typically small bus powered drives like Acomdata Ondago drives or LaCie Porche drives that I attach to my laptop. I use P2 Genie (www.p2genie) because it automates the process. Insert a card and it creates a new folder, names it (you set the folder names) and copies over the files. Lickidy split.

Then when we get back to the office, we offload those drives to a 1TB G-Raid for INTERMEDIATE storage. For the duration of the project, they remain on this drive. Then I import from that G-Raid onto my SATA Raid and use the imported files for editing. The G-Raid sits in waiting for the duration of the project. When editing is completed and masters sent off, I then take the files off the expensive G-Raid ($1099 for 1TB) and currently put them onto four or more (if needed) BARE SATA drives. $60-$80 each. Total of $240-$320. I connect the drives to my computer either with an empty firewire case, or with this $14 cable:

I then wrap those back in their drive plastic, and store them on my shelf.

I am, however, looking into the CalDigit Firewire VR unit as a solution ( This unit connects via firewire 400, 800 and usb 2.0…and the drives are removable. When you order replacements they ship with them a storage box that you can put both drives into, label on the side (there are spaces for you to do so) and the fit on a VHS sized shelf. PERFECT for archiving. And the cost of the drive modules is only slightly more than the bare drives.

BUT…I might wait to see what Blu-Ray has to offer. LaCie is coming out with one soon. That might be a bit more ecomonical, and sturdy. Or HD-DVD for DATA backup.

We’ll see what the future has in store.

OK. Not really. But I actually like that 80’s song and it is SORTA true.

I will be appearing on Phil Hodgett’s Digital Production Buzz ( on Feb 8th. This podcast can be found on iTunes.

What will I be talking about? Not sure. Perhaps working with P2, or DVCPRO HD, or the workflow I use to get from P2 to D5 and digibeta for broadcast delivery. Perhaps my elbow rubbing with Oliver Stone on my first film job, thus making me ONE degree of separation from Kevin Bacon…and other famous folk and world leaders. I won’t be touching on my stints on WHEN ANIMALS ATTACK or AMERICA’S FUNNIES HOME VIDEOS, because really, are they all that interesting? I was the TAPE VAULT MANAGER…so no, they weren’t.

Listen in and hear what I sound like. I hope not to ramble much. I am apt to do that.