A Videographer’s Guide to Hiring a Videographer

11 minute read

I learned some painful lessons about hiring a videographer last year for our wedding. A friend who’s getting married this year asked me about it. Here’s what I shared.

Rclone Cloud Archival Pro Tips

10 minute read

The previous post detailed how Rclone can reliably upload large files with their checksums to Backblaze unlike other programs. This post will outline the workflow and some gotchas to keep in mind when doing massive data loads over the internet.

Missing Checksums in NAS Cloud Archives

3 minute read

Backblaze B2 is an incredibly cost-effective cloud-based archival platform. I had a few TBs of large file video footage stored on a Synology NAS that I wanted to archive to B2, in case anything happened to my local array.

Lossless Trimming of XAVC-S with PlayMemories

1 minute read

Sometimes it’s a live gig and I’m doing multiple things, like camera and sound. Throw in some stage delays and out of a 56 minute clip, half is not needed. On a Sony AX100 shooting at 1080p XAVCS 30fps, that’s 11 out of 22 GB extra.

Conforming FiLMiC Video for NLEs

2 minute read

I knew that normal iPhone videos are variable frame rate. Learned that the hard way, once when I was given a concert recorded on an iPhone to sync up to mastered audio. #superfail #ididntrecordthis

Conforming Livestream Video for NLEs

6 minute read

I’ve recently been experimenting with realtime editing of live events. That way I can speed up turnaround times for multicam edits, especially for 2+ hour events like typical Indian classical dances and concerts.

Using RenderGarden to Multithread After Effects Exports

11 minute read

Recently, I found myself deinterlacing footage from two Blu-ray discs using some Red Giant After Effects plugins. The two compositions were HD 1080 59.94i files, 51 minutes and 94 minutes each. My jaw dropped when I saw the estimated time for just the first file start at 50 hours, and keep increase. Plenty of CPU was still available on the mach...

The Quest for Media Management

15 minute read

With over twenty years of Indian classical music concert footage, I’ve always dreamt of tagging each file by raga, tala, artist, audio quality, etc. to quickly pull up footage based on smart bins. Looking for Śivarañjanī? No problem. Dhrupad? Got that too. How about all files that need audio synced up? Coming right up.

Using an Apogee ONE for Livestream Audio

3 minute read

Earlier this year, I was livestreaming a music concert where there was no access to the soundboard’s mic output. It was a low-key, unlisted stream for family and friends, but I still wanted a find a way to improve the audio quality rather than using the camera’s built-in mic.

Persisting Finder Labels in Cloud Storage

4 minute read

I often use Finder labels colors to manage media, specifically colors. These can easily indicate statuses: green for complete, blue for “cold storage” projects, red for abandoned projects, etc. These labels however are not supported on many popular bucket storage, e.g. Amazon S3 and Backblaze B2.

Best Practices for Large Web Transfers

2 minute read

Sometimes, when collaborating on projects virtually, file storage becomes a problem. Professional studios can probably run highly performant SFTP servers or bucket storage systems, but when you’re working with other freelancers on tight budgets—who may not be as tech savvy—a 30 GB file starts becoming a big problem.

Repairing H.264 Interlaced Footage

9 minute read

We’ll start with a quote from Larry Jordan: X.264 and H.264 should only be used when creating files for the web. If you plan to edit the resulting file, convert it to ProRes instead. AVCHD files compressed into H.264 for editing will look just awful.

Livestreaming Lessons Learned

12 minute read

Last May, for Chhandayan’s All-Night Concert 2015 in NYC, I cut between two cameras in the livestream for the first time. Little did I know, there was a lot to learn.

How to Add Timecode to MP4 Files

10 minute read

Newer, prosumer codecs these days like Sony XAVC-S don’t seem to record video with timecode. It’s one of the chief drawbacks that knocks the otherwise brilliant Sony AX100 from solid professional use. Timecode tracks can save mountains of time when editing multicamera shots, relinking media files, trimming clips precisely and so on—which, osten...

FCP X 10.2.2 Unaffected by XMP Metadata Changes

12 minute read

There is quite a bit of literature on the net how Adobe applications can embed XMP metadata and modify original footage on import—wreaking havoc for other NLEs like FCP. Posts range as far back as 2011, the year FCP X was released, to even one in mid 2014. However, for those that roundtrip between FCP X and Adobe with XMP metadata, turns ou...

Renaming MP4 to M4V to open with QT7 & Compressor

7 minute read

For a long time, Sony’s XAVC-S codec was completely a mystery to me. It was the new format the Sony CX900 and AX100 use, and when those cameras originally shipped, the files could not be edited natively with FCP X. (Version 10.2 added that functionality.)

Reverse Engineering XAVC-S XML Files

4 minute read

Many new Sony video cameras (like the FDR-AX100 and HDR-CX900) record into the XAVC-S format. XAVC-S writes to MP4 containers, and alongside them sit nice little XML files with metadata. The following is what I’ve unearthed from poking around the SD card.