Sony EX3 & Avid Workflow

June 29, 2011

Hi Marty!

In a perfect world, we would shoot with the EX3, 30fps, and we’d edit on Mac’s with Avid 5, and the assistant editor computer would be the fastest motherfucker on the planet. I recommend the EX3 over the F800 because you don’t have to buy XDCAM stock, you don’t have to rent decks, upressing takes 1/10th the amount of time, and we probably don’t need a night assistant editor. All we need to buy are Raid drives, and we’ll have to convince the network to let us deliver on hard drives.

If we’re shooting 600 hours of footage, and the SxS cards are 32 GB’s / card, then that would be just under 12 Terabytes of Disk Space needed for storage. If this is the case, I would recommend a 16 Terabyte Unity, and 24 Terabytes worth of Raid storage for backing up the memory cards. There are different types of Raid, and I would recommend Raid-1. Raid-1 is very important because if one of the drives dies, we won’t lose our original footage! These cost about $800 / 8 Terabytes, so $2600 total. http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/608031-REG/Western_Digital_WDA4NC80000N_8TB_ShareSpace_Network_Storage.html

I recommend we rent Mac computers, OS X version 10.6.3, with Avid 5.0.3.9. It’s pretty stable. Couple minor crashes here and there, but nothing that will slow down editorial. Avid 5 is a necessity for tapeless cameras, and a big time saver for the F800. The newer versions of Avid have a feature called AMA which allows you to read footage straight from the memory card into Avid, immediately.

The workflow I recommend would go as follows:
-After filling the memory cards, we copy them onto Raid-1 storage and wipe the cards clean.
-In Avid, we load the cards with the “Link to AMA Volume” feature, and transcode the media to a lower resolution, while keeping the 48khz audio.
-We can group, edit, and do outputs.
-When we go to online, we reload the AMA volumes. Then relink the low resolution material to the HD files, and consolidate to an external hard drive.

A major bottleneck with the new tapeless cameras and F800 is importing, exporting, rendering, consolidating and transcoding. So the faster the assistant editor computer goes, the faster we go. A 12-core mac computer with 2.93 GHZ processors and 64 Gigabytes of RAM would be the fastest. I recommend having Final Cut Pro 7 installed with Compressor and DVD Studio Pro and Motion, it gives us more options to save time. And Adobe Creative Suite, with After Effects and Photoshop… more options as well. I also recommend having a gigabit ethernet card installed in the computer, for use with the Raid-1 storage.

Another major issue is internet speed. The faster the better, to help with sending and downloading quicktimes and music and graphics and facebook.

-Matt Rittorno

If you have workflow questions or other post-production needs, I’m available to work. Check out my services and contact info here.

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2 Responses to “Sony EX3 & Avid Workflow”

  1. Sean Riley said

    great workflow – a lot of help, thanks!

  2. I read this piece of writing completely regarding the comparison of hottest and
    earlier technologies, it’s awesome article.

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