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What is AVCHD?, and what exactly is HDD? 

AVCHD is a combination of AVC (Advanced Video Coding) and MPG2.  Some of the newest cameras now support AVCHD which records to a hard drive.  You may see the term HDD, which simply refers to (Hard Disk Drive).

To simplify, this technology records High Defination Video within an MPEG-2 transport stream directly to a hard-drive.  In fact, the Sony HDR SR12 is completely tapless!  It contains a 120 gig hard drive, which is enough storage to record over 20 hours of high defination footage without stopping.  It also has the ability to take 10 megapixel still images.

 

Sony_HDR_SR12.jpgUser's of Final Cut Pro can use the Log and Transfer tool to bring these clips into their editing system.  You must have one an intel based MAC, and you must be running the latest version the Final Cut Studio software.  The conversion process is close to real-time, but it can be automated. 

Also, Final Cut Studio converts the video stream to Pro Res 422 which is approximately 4 times the original size of the file(s) that sit on the camera.  To make sure you have sufficient space on your hard drive before ingesting the media.

Unfortunately, users of Avid Media Composer will have to convert the footage using a third party software product.  I am hopeful Avid will adopt AVCHD technology in their Media Composer product line soon. As a professional alternative,  Media Composer supports P2 media in it's native format.

GeniusDV teaches the AVCHD workflow in it's Final Cut Studio 5 Day training class.

 

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SanDisk and Sony XDCam EX was the previous entry in this blog.

Ken Burns Effect Photo Montage in Final Cut Pro is the next entry in this blog.

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