Using EDLs with Tapeless Media

Posted on by Larry

[ This article was first published in the May, 2010, issue of
Larry’s Monthly Final Cut Studio Newsletter. Click here to subscribe. ]

Nguyen asks:

I have watched your very good tutorial about EDL. It is very clear and precise.


Can you help me for this problem: Normally, once EDL is set up, I switch ON the VTR (connected to the Mac) and my role is to change tapes of the VTR every time the Mac ask me.


This is my request: I have HDCAM SR shots in hard drives, but NOT in HDCAM SR tapes. I have converted HDCAM SR into DVCAM for editing.


Now, I finish the edit with DVCAM shots, how to make EDL with Hard drives instead of with HDCAM SR VTR deck?

Larry replies: Nguyen, thanks for writing.

This has either a really good answer, a bad answer, or a really bad answer. When you are working with files, you don’t need an EDL. EDLs are principally used for tape.

The Good Answer
If, when you created the DVCAM files, you matched the file name, timecode, and frame rate, all you need to do is create a new sequence with an HDCAM setting, and reconnect media from the low-res DVCAM files to the hi-res HDCAM files.


Fast and easy.


The Bad Answer
If, when you created the DVCAM files, you did not match the file names, but did match the timecode, you will need to manually reconnect each file.


The REALLY Bad Answer
If, when you created the DVCAM files, you did not match the file name OR the timecode, then you will need to re-edit everything.

UPDATE – May 31, 2010

Mike Krause sent this in:

Here’a a fix I’d like to suggest to Nguyen who might have problems connecting to some DVCam dubs. If it turns out he is stuck with the “really bad answer” I might have a solution.


I had a very similar job recently; long story short, he might be able to use Modify > Timecode for the DVCam conversions/dubs he made, and change the timecode to match the masters.


If the names are the same but the DVCam TC doesn’t match, as long as the frame rate matches he’ll be in business.


And if nothing else, this might elevate his problem from “really bad” to just “bad” if he has to manually change the TC and reconnect for every clip. It might be better than starting over depending on his project.

Larry repiies: Thanks, Mike.


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