Great Article on Editing Using FCP (Long Distance)

11 01 2008

Harry B. Miller III, editorHarry B. Miller III, ACE member and editor, wrote a great piece on the ACE Tech Web Discussion blog about editing BOOK OF BLOOD on a Final Cut system. He talks straighforwardly about what he likes and doesn’t like.

The project, is Viper-based and, therefore, completely tapeless. Even more interestingly, it was shot in Scotland and edited in Burbank, California, which made for some interesting issues, some of which I’m already dealing with on the documentary RIVERS that I’m starting to edit — in particular, file transfer.

The first stumbling block has been getting media from Scotland to Burbank. The first attempts through an ftp site were not encouraging. Although my edit room has 3 megabits per second down, the fastest download I could get was 120 kilobits per second. Attempts at three other sites had the same disappointing results. (I have heard there is a speed problem between the UK and the US, but don’t know the true situation. Anyone know?).

The first transfer that actually worked was ‘sneaker net’ – portable firewire drives were brought from Scotland to Burbank. The next option is from a company called SmartJog. It offers high speed media transfer at reasonable rates. More on this in a later post – presuming it works.

As we move further and further into a world of distance collaboration, we are going to find that our reliance on the Internet will be one of the restraining factors. We are all reliant on an increasingly overloaded and outdated backbone. It will get better, when Internet 2 and other pricier services come online. But for those of us making international films today, this is going to slow us down. Already, on RIVERS, we have shipped large files via FedEx Firewire drives, rather than online DigiDelivery. It’s all too damned slow, since we’re working in HD.

An interesting addition to this will come when they start to screen edits of the film. I don’t know if their producers are in the States or back in Scotland, but I’d be interested in hearing from anyone who have had to screen and gets notes and approvals long distance. On RIVERS I’m hoping to use Michael Buday’s Syncvue, and I’ll let you know how that works.

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One response

11 01 2008
Phil Benson

Do you know about Aspera software for accelerated file transfers?

It uses the internet, but bypasses TCP/IP congestion-recovery bottlenecks that slow FTP, etc. It can be be used by buying send/receive plugin for web browsers or by running a server/client system. They’ve bought DigiDelivery, so I’m sure we’ll see their technology in a future DD product soon.

Check out this:
http://asperasoft.com/about/news/avatar-2007-08-07.html

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