Recs for using MTS files in a FCP X film?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by oxband, Oct 24, 2016.

  1. oxband macrumors 6502

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    Sep 10, 2009
    #1
    I have a card that got corrupted but I was able to save MTS files. I wanna use these clips in a FCP X movie? Recs on how to do that? Should I convert to Pro Res first?
     
  2. martinX macrumors 6502a

    martinX

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    Australia
    #2
    Yes.
     
  3. oxband thread starter macrumors 6502

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  4. mBox macrumors 68020

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    Jun 26, 2002
    #4
    MPEG STREAMCLIP for starters.
    If you have Adobe Cloud then Media Encoder.
    The other option is to let FCPX bless it for you.
     
  5. oxband thread starter macrumors 6502

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  6. mBox macrumors 68020

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  7. ColdCase, Oct 25, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2016

    ColdCase macrumors 68030

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    #7
    Try Bigasoft ProRes converter and see if it works for you, they offer a free trial.

    "Bigasoft ProRes Converter converts video in any format like MKV, MTS, MOV, MP4, WMV, AVCHD, WebM, RMVB to lossy video compression format ProRes 422, ProRes 4444, Apple ProRes 422 (HQ) for import and edit in FCP and FCP X."

    All the converters are basically GUI for the OS built in code/process, so they work about the same on pristine well behaved video. There are several GUIs in the app store.

    Bigasoft seems to be more reliable than anything else I've tried, free or otherwise, and I've tried them all. If Bigasoft can't work with the video, well, you are into pro/lab level manipulation. Where others stall, this software just seems to just work its magic. Its not infallible, but if you know what you are doing, the software allows access to plenty of customizations and parameters to tweak away at.

    Even at $30, less with coupons, not a bad price for what you get.

    I've converted tons of MTS and WMV videos with it. Does a nice job.
     
  8. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

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    Sep 3, 2013
    #8
    In general FCPX can import and edit the files in native format without transcoding. However AVCHD-format files are re-wrapped automatically during import, hence the "leave files in place" option is greyed out. If the same .MTS files are removed from the AVCHD file bundle, they can be imported with "leave files in place".

    You do not need to externally transcode MTS files to ProRes before importing them. If you DO want to transcode, then FCPX can do that during import or afterward.

    The best practice is don't copy the MTS files out of the AVCHD bundle, but this is commonly done. In your case it was a file salvage situation.

    Due to some I/O performance problems I've seen with bare .MTS files, in general I would recommend externally re-wrapping (not transcoding) AVCHD media using ClipWrap: http://www.divergentmedia.com/clipwrap, EditReady: http://www.divergentmedia.com/editready, or the free utility ReWrapAVCHD: https://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/39800/rewrapavchd

    I have never used ReWrapAVCHD but it supposedly works. I have used ClipWrap and EditReady many times and they work great.
     
  9. ColdCase macrumors 68030

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    #9
    The downside of using built in FPX, clip wrap, or rewraps type utilities is that they are slow, and any little defect will break them, breaks such a sound sync that you probably won't notice until post QC. Not bad performance for one or two short clips, but if you are doing 20+ videos a day, it can slow down the work flow... and when you discover a QC problem, its do over time.

    Just saying that the MTS files may look salvaged, but could be flawed. If Bigasoft's free trial can't read and convert the MTS files, then they may not be salvageable by routine means by any of the GUI utilities, and it would be nice to know that before spending days bouncing your head off the wall. Been there, done that. A pro shop may have the knowledge and tools to recover.

    If you never try to work with flawed video thats not throw away, like something that transmitted remotely via a RF link, then just about anything would work well, if slow.
     
  10. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

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    Sep 3, 2013
    #10
    I'm working on a large doc project and yesterday I converted about 1 terabyte of MTS files to MOV with EditReady. It was not slow, since it was re-wrapping not transcoding.

    You are correct -- files can have defects and this can cause the re-wrapping OR transcoding software to lock up, crash or simply produce equally defective output files. However I don't see how any conversion tool can magically avoid this. Video files always require examination during post processing -- many things can go wrong.
     
  11. ColdCase, Oct 26, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2016

    ColdCase macrumors 68030

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    #11
    My understanding is the MTS wrappers can contain video files with a number of codecs, some of which FCPX does not handle well or fast either as part of preprocessing or rendering. It seems better, workflow wise, to use a third party transcoder that can use all my 8 cores for the job... and just run everything through.

    Some conversion software allows access to more advanced settings, and its far beyond my understanding of what all those settings do. I know that setting async to 1, for example, clears up audio sync issues I often find in MTS wrapped files caused by small drop outs that don't otherwise affect the video. These are MTS files FCPX usually says are unusable, or badly munges. All the third party stuff except Bigasoft that I've tried munges the video. Working with camera shots, one would probably not ever see this. And just about anything would works well enough.

    I don't think it matters to the typical hobbyist that is working on camera shots, I know I didn't care until two years ago. The OP seems to be trying to recover damaged goods, however. And the routine stuff doesn't seem to be working for him. So perhaps have him try the best I found for damaged goods and see what happens. Its free, and if it doesn't work, then there is probably a lot more damage there than is obvious.

    I work a lot with MTS and WMV files from a variety of sources and getting the video in good shape before trying to use a NLE editor results in much shorter workflows for me over the long run. Not the same situation as most others. On my camera shots, its direct from camera memory card to FCPX editing and it never seems slow.
     

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  12. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

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    #12
    I have never encountered properly-packaged MTS files which FCPX handled poorly or slowly but I agree it's best to re-wrap them externally. They are easier to handle at the Finder level, it removes the deeply-nested AVCHD bundle and (as you said) there's a chance the conversion software might find an error, but this is not guaranteed.

    I agree with this. You never know how those files were handled or what state they are in. However if the MTS files are properly handled and packaged (which means they are within the AVCHD bundle) FCPX can import and re-wrap them directly and it doesn't seem slow.

    My doc group has mostly eliminate AVCHD but we have a lot of archival material and we periodically get AVCHD/MTS content from various sources. I agree re-wrapping or transcoding those prior to import using your preferred utility is the best procedure. I have had good results with ClipWrap and EditReady, and re-wrapping with those is very fast.

    There is apparently a performance problem with FCPX with bare MTS files in large libraries -- even those in good shape. It manifests as excessive I/O and sluggish Event Browser thumbnail generation. This can be seen using the command-line Dtrace utilities bitesize.d, iosnoop and iopending. When scrolling down the Event Browser in thumbnail mode, the I/O histogram from bitesize.d and file access data from iosnoop shows an excessive number of small I/Os. Removing and re-wrapping those MTS files eliminates this.

    Note the Dtrace utilities cannot be used starting with El Capitan unless System Integrity Protection is first disabled: http://apple.stackexchange.com/ques...otless-is-there-any-way-to-get-dtrace-working
     

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