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Can you RENAME footage to be imported (using metadata)...without transcoding?

Jul 12, 2013 10:58 PM

Tags: #bridge #mts #avchd #metadata #native #transcode #prelude #rename_file #premiere_pro_cc

Is there a way, or a program in the suite that can rename all the files using the file's metadata (namely the date and time it was shot) that we plan to import without transcoding them? They are AVCHD files (.MTS files)... For years we've transcoded to prores proxy and then eventually to ProRes422 when final edit is locked for export, but since Premiere handles native avchd files (.mts) pretty well now, I'd rather not have to transcode and save some hard drive space. Transcoding doesn't appear to offer any benefits over editing natively anymore, right (for basic editing with basic color correction)?

 

So is there a program (prelude? bridge?) that I can use to access all the mts files and rename them by the date and time it was shot so that I can take all 5 or 6 SDHC cards and combine them and have them all listed in chronological order? Right now I end up with either a folder for each card, or if I try to combine all the clips, I end up with a bunch of files with the same name (eg. 00000.MTS, 00001.MTS, etc...) since that's how they were named coming out of the camera on their respective card.

 

Please advise. Thanks!

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 13, 2013 12:20 AM   in reply to DMH79

    Bridge is the tool for you on this. Tools>BatchRename. Reasonably self-explanatory from there...

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 2:23 AM   in reply to Mark Mapes

    Mark, I wonder if it's possible to safely rename spanned AVCHD clips in Bridge CC? Normally renaming would break spanning, and vendors offer stitching them together into a single M2TS file via their utilities for that matter.

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 2:34 AM   in reply to Fuzzy Barsik

    Excellent point, Mr. Barsik. Dunno what I was thinking. Or to be more accurate, I simply wasn't thinking.  Thanks for backing me up.

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 9:02 AM   in reply to DMH79

    They are AVCHD files

     

    Your best option is to not touch anything inside the top level PRIVATE folder.  Leave everything exactly as it came off the card.

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 9:11 AM   in reply to Jim Simon

    Jim Simon wrote:

     

    They are AVCHD files

     

    Your best option is to not touch anything inside the top level PRIVATE folder.  Leave everything exactly as it came off the card.

    The problem here is other applications (such as Resolve?) may not be able to work with duplicate files names, despite the fact that they're located in separate folders.  So if you have 60 files with the same name, e.g. "00001.MTS", you're in big trouble.  It's also cumbersome within Premiere itself to have so much duplication.  There's has to be some easy way to rename them and retain metadata.

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 9:12 AM   in reply to jamesp2

    I don't argue it's a problem.  But it's a problem camera makers need to correct by not using a damned folder structure.  One MXF file to hold video, audio, timecode and and metadata, which can be renamed or moved as desired without breaking anything.  It's what we had with DV, it's what we need and want back with tapeless.

     

    So break out that pen and paper and find the address of your favorite camera company.  Let them know how badly they screwed this one up and that you want it corrected for the forthcoming H.265 standard.

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 9:18 AM   in reply to jamesp2
    There's has to be some easy way to rename them and retain metadata.

    I've been always curious if Panasonic and Canon utilities don't rewrap spanned MTS files into a single M2TS one? Or at least offer stitching transfered spanned m2ts files into a single file like Sony Content Browser does?

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 9:46 AM   in reply to DMH79

    What model is your camera? If it operates on exFAT, it no longer obeys FAT32 file size limitations, hence it no longer records spanned AVCHD clips.

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 10:51 AM   in reply to DMH79

    Panasonic AG-HMC150 is claimed to be on FAT32. Moreover, it was claimed as potentially suffering from spanned AVCHD clips bug in CS6 (no evidence so far though).

     

    Therefore, I'm still curious if Panasonic utilities rewrap spanned MTS clips into a single M2TS file?

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 10:52 AM   in reply to DMH79

    If you've got a moment, try this, assuming you're on Windows:  shoot a few clips, copy the entire file structure to disk, navigate to the "stream" folder, open it, highlight all the files, right click on the first one, select "rename", rename it (say, with the date& time shot), and execute.  All the highlighted files will be renamed to that time and date, but incrementally numbered ,(1), (2), (3), etc. in sequence.  So each file now has the same root name (date and time), but is numbered sequentially after that.  No duplicate names.

     

    Now, using the Media Browser, import those clips.  Then go back to the stream folder and see if PPro created .xmp files for each imported clip.  If so, it would appear you have metadata.  If not, no metadata, because PPro couldn't find any after renaming.

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 11:47 AM   in reply to DMH79
    if I try to import AVCHD files natively w/o using the Media Browser those long clips come in as 2 or 3 files. For example, an hour long clip would be imported as 00000.mts but 00001.mts and 00002.mts would be the same identical clip. If I used Media Browser and navigated to the PRIVATE folder those 2 or 3 clips would now show as just one file (using the example above I would now see 00000.mts and then the next file would be 00003.mts) so it wouldn't bring in duplicates.

     

    This ^^^ may be unrelated to spanning, but I just thought I'd throw it out there.

    That's how PrPro treats spanned AVCHD clips: if all metadata are preserved, it's smart enough to recognise them irrespective of the way you import them.

    I've never dealt with any issues.

    Even though Adobe announced that the fix for spanned AVCHD clips bug in CS6 will be ported soon, I encourage you to shoot a sample, zip the whole folder structure, upload the archived file to e.g. Google Drive (which offers 15 GB storage fo free now) and share the link in this Joe's CS6 / AVCHD / Spanned Clip Bug / What Cameras And Media Types Are Affected? thread.

     
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    Jul 13, 2013 9:15 PM   in reply to DMH79

    Doesn't work in Windows either:  once you rename the files, the file structure becomes inaccessible through the Media Browser.  You can, however, put the renamed files in another folder, and access it directly through the MB -- but not if they're nested in the AVCHD folders.

     

    It would be interesting to know what, if anything, one loses by forgoing the file structure, and .xmp files, in favor of distinct file names (at least, in the case of non-spanned files).  Far as I can see, there's no operational difference in PPro, but there must be something ... or is it just a relic of the camera's operating/playback system?

     
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    Jul 14, 2013 3:50 AM   in reply to jamesp2

    Media Browser automatically detects folder structure for different types of media - AVCHD, Canon XF, Panasonic P2, RED etc. - and hides 'unnecessary' data from a user. When you rename files in e.g. STREAM folder, clips names no longer match what is recorded in metadata, hence they become 'invisible' for Media Browser in AVCHD mode. However, if you switch the mode from AVCHD to File Directory, you can drill down conventional tree and eventually see your clips (as a separate files if they originally were spanned) - no needs to move them elsewhere.

     

    Regard to what you lose by discarding original folder structure

    - spanned clips may lose their synchronisation, 'frozen' duplicated frame may be seen on clips joins;

    - the rest depends on whether you utilise metadata recorded in camera. With consumer camcorders there are no much options for them, they are mostly presented in prosumer and professional cameras. Vendors transfer utilities tend to preserve in camera metadata.

     

    By the way, Operating Instruction manual for Panasonic AG-HMC150 argues that it's possible to set USER CLIP NAME instead of conventional 5-digit naming. That may be the answer for DMH79.

     
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    Jul 26, 2013 2:45 PM   in reply to DMH79

    I did find one work around, but it's a bit of a pain. If it's a small project I import into PP right off the card, rename the clips in PP then use the project manager to move the files to my RAID and tell it to rename the files to match my names. This will rename the meta stuff too. The drawback is you have to rename each file, you can't batch rename and you have to wait for conforming. But you can get it to copy the conformed files when you use Project Manager.

     
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