AVCHD archiving suggestions?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by CMD is me, Aug 13, 2008.

  1. CMD is me macrumors 6502

    Dec 7, 2006
    With AVCHD camera, what is the best way to archive the original footage should you want to access it again -- create a disk image and select an external drive as the target? I've yet to work much with DMG files other than for app downloads. Is there anyway split the data to fit on a DVD? I'll be using 8-16gb cards (4gb would certainly fit on a DVD, but I'm not sure I'd want to deal with only 30 minutes of video on a card).
  2. Courtaj macrumors 6502a


    Jul 3, 2008
    Edinburgh, U.K.
    Hi there,

    Personally, I see no huge advantage in .dmg. If you're talking about a camera that records to SD card, just copy the card's contents entire, including directory structure, into a new folder, label the folder appropriately, and you're done. To access down the road, copy folder contents back to card, use a card reader to import, and you're laughing.

    How easy is that? :rolleyes:

  3. CMD is me thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 7, 2006
    Well that's easy. So I guess by copying the entire contents to a folder, saving on an external, then later copying back to a SD card, the card shows up as the camera... right? Makes sense, just seems too easy.
  4. Mit59 macrumors newbie

    Aug 8, 2008
    dmg method

    Sorry guys, I think you misunderstand the dmg concept on a Mac. A .dmg is a self-contained volume stored within a single file. You could have dozens of them on your "external drive".

    Any volume can be mounted to your desktop by simple double-click. It will instantly appear to the Mac (or more importantly iMovie 08) as if a camera (or card-reader if you prefer) and you can import etc.

    This is WAY easier than copying back to a SDHC card....

  5. CMD is me thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 7, 2006
    Good point, but wouldn't both achieve the same goal or would a DMG file be smaller? Other than not having to transfer the data to a removable SD reader (which would certainly take some time via USB) what is the advantage of DMG to "drag copy"?
  6. Mit59 macrumors newbie

    Aug 8, 2008
    Yes, both achieve the same goal but I like the .dmg because it captures the entire AVCHD file structure in a .dmg file and can be mounted easily. As far as I know you can't access the AVCHD file structure except at the volume level. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

  7. Courtaj macrumors 6502a


    Jul 3, 2008
    Edinburgh, U.K.
    Either way works. I suppose the take-home point here is that archiving AVCHD is easy because you are dealing with files and folders.

    So long as you have a backup strategy in place!
  8. PacMan3000 macrumors newbie

    Jan 10, 2011
    I know this is a MAJOR bump, but I just found this thread and am wondering if the examples of archiving your AVCHD/MTS files still holds true?

    As someone here wrote, they suggested you copy all the contents of your SD card, save them on a hard drive, and when you want to access that raw footage again, copy the contents BACK onto the SD card so that it can be played on your TV (through your camera) or imported into a editing program.

    I'm thinking of getting the Sony CX350v, so any info would be greatly appreciated.

  9. CMD is me thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 7, 2006
    You go it. Just make sure to copy the whole file structure and you're good to go. Plays great on a PS3 btw.
  10. PacMan3000 macrumors newbie

    Jan 10, 2011
    Thanks CMD. Is it also easy (I'm sure it probably depends on the camcorder you buy to some extent) to transfer footage from your internal memory to your removable SD card?

    And also, is there a certain brand and class of SD card that I should buy over others. I see brands like Transcend, Kingston, etc, but am not sure which is more or less reliable than the other.

    And lastly, regarding playback on the PS3, don't your MTS files have to be a certain size or less to fit? Meaning, if you shot a continuous football game for 45 straight minutes, it likely wouldn't play on the PS3. But if all your footage is broken up in ten minute portions, it's likely to play because each file would be smaller?
  11. CMD is me thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 7, 2006
    That I don't know. I have a Canon HF100 which is SD only. But I believe its similar.

    You'll have to research that. I've been happy with Sandisk Extreme III. I've yet to have one fail on me.

    I don't shoot any clips longer than 2-3 minutes, but I'm not aware of any length issue. The PS3 will play your MTS clips in order from the card. My 1 hour SD cards may have 100 or so MTS clips. You can also save the clips to the PS3 hard drive and create folders.
  12. PacMan3000 macrumors newbie

    Jan 10, 2011
    OK thanks. I was looking up this topic on other forums and noticed you posted the following in 2009:

    Is that an issue you're still dealing with? Once the files are transferred to the computer, are they unable to be played on the PS3 if you copy them back onto the SD card?
  13. mkjj macrumors 6502a


    Jun 2, 2003
    I thought I read somewhere about a 4gb file limit for the PS3, maybe wrong though.

    I archive my MTS files on my PS3 as well but never tried to copy them back off onto an MS card. (I have original 60gb PS3 with card reader), must try it.
  14. PacMan3000 macrumors newbie

    Jan 10, 2011
    That's what I thought, as well.

    What's causing me some confusion is not understanding how the MTS files stores your footage. Meaning, if I shoot for five minutes, pause the camera (or turn it off completely), and then begin shooting 10 minutes later, is it creating TWO separate files for my footage?

    If I shoot a football game for 45 continuous minutes, does that create one huge MTS file (that likely won't play on the PS3 given the 4GB limit) or does it automatically create a bunch of smaller, individual files in that instance, and then play them all back together in a seamless fashion?
  15. pmasters macrumors member

    Aug 15, 2009
    No. I believe many of them only create a file up to 1GB and then it creates a new file automatically until the camera is stopped from recording. So you can have a continuous 45 minute shoot but have it spanned over multiple 1GB files.
  16. De Rocca macrumors member

    Apr 28, 2010

    This is the way i do it :

    Imovie has the option to 'archive' the files straight from your camera, keeping it in the original directory structure.

    This way, it stays compact (when you import to Imovie/FCP it will be much bigger due to the AIC codec)

    At the moment when you want to start working with it, you can import it in Imovie or Whatever package you want.

    Kind regards,
  17. PacMan3000 macrumors newbie

    Jan 10, 2011
    Thanks Rocca. Do you know if after iMovie archives the files from the camera, you can then place those files (or folder/complete file structure) onto a portable hard drive for future storage?
  18. De Rocca macrumors member

    Apr 28, 2010
    Yep, I have archived them to an external HD, and it works.

    When i want to work on them , i import the files in imovie or fcp. (making the file approx. 4 times bigger)

    Directory structure looks like this :
    Folder : Sony HDR-SR11E - 23-11-10
    SubFolders :
    -> AVCHD (contains your footage)
    -> AVF_INFO
    ->DCIM (contains your photos, if your camera can take them)

    When you want to import in imovie, you will see all files of the backup.
  19. PacMan3000 macrumors newbie

    Jan 10, 2011
    Thanks. So let's say you have your files transferred onto your HD.

    You copy the entire folder from your HD, paste it onto your computer's desktop, and then open iMovie and go to Import>Movies

    And then from there, you just select the entire folder and it'll show all your recorded clips that you can import into the editor?
  20. De Rocca macrumors member

    Apr 28, 2010
    you can import directly from the external harddisk if you want. You'll get a screen with all your footage. You select the clips you want to import and you're gone.
  21. herbklee, Jul 9, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2011

    herbklee macrumors newbie

    Jul 9, 2011
    oops my bad

  22. herbklee macrumors newbie

    Jul 9, 2011

    only issue is that I haven't found aelegant way to catalog and preview clips in th archival format.


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