9 Replies Latest reply on Feb 2, 2011 4:57 AM by ExactImage

    timecode and Canon DSLR

    jkosmicki Level 2

      Do the Canon DSLR cameras shoot timecode? If so, can Premiere recognize it? I've had 2 projects with source footage from Canon 7D cameras and all of the clips start at 00:00:00:00. This latest project has over 6 hours of source footage, I could really, really use some timecode...

      -Jeff

        • 1. Re: timecode and Canon DSLR
          Colin Brougham Level 6

          Nope, no timecode. I think I've heard about some app that rewraps the files and uses the creation date of the file to generate timecode, but I don't know/can't remember the name of it. Canon provides an FCP plug-in that does something like this, but that transcodes the files at the same time.

           

          Obviously, a shortcoming in the workflow at present...

          • 2. Re: timecode and Canon DSLR
            jkosmicki Level 2

            That's what I was afraid of. Thanks for the info.

            -Jeff

            • 3. Re: timecode and Canon DSLR
              Colin Brougham Level 6

              Are you trying to sync sound? Or do you just want it for organizational purposes?


              • 4. Re: timecode and Canon DSLR
                jkosmicki Level 2

                Organization purposes. I just ended up sending the drive of clips to the writer, that way he can reference the clip number then the timecode, should work fine. At least the Canon clips don't have the weird P2 naming convention.

                • 5. Re: timecode and Canon DSLR
                  Colin Brougham Level 6

                  This is from an FCP blog (booooo), but it might be a useful option:

                   

                  Get free run time code from 7d footage with QtChange!

                   

                  You can get QtChange (link on that page) for Mac or PC. The producer I work with quite a bit shoots Canon footage as b-roll; might look into this myself.

                  • 6. Re: timecode and Canon DSLR
                    the_wine_snob Level 9

                    Great find Colin. Thanks for sharing.

                     

                    Hunt

                    • 7. Re: timecode and Canon DSLR
                      ExactImage Level 3

                      I've put in a feature request to Adobe because when I use FCP with the EOs plugin you DO GET TIMECODE from DSLR footage (when using the FCP EOS plugin).  All clips come in with a start time that the camera was at when the clip started recording.   Not only that, but the FCP EOS plugin also makes available the camera model, lens, focal length, Aperture, shutter speed and ISO that the clip was shot at. 

                       

                       

                       

                      I love having all this info available, but the timecode is by far the one I miss the most.  Come on Adobe... if FCP can do it and if QTChange can do it (I've used that too) then Adobe can do it too.  C'mon guys, how about it ? 

                       

                      While you can indeed sync footage with tools like PluralEyes, having time code helps big time when sorting clips.  I hate it that clips all have 00:00:00:00 timecode in CS5.

                      • 8. Re: timecode and Canon DSLR
                        Colin Brougham Level 6
                        ...when I use FCP with the EOs plugin you DO GET TIMECODE from DSLR footage (when using the FCP EOS plugin).  All clips come in with a start time that the camera was at when the clip started recording.   Not only that, but the FCP EOS plugin also makes available the camera model, lens, focal length, Aperture, shutter speed and ISO that the clip was shot at.

                         

                        Well, more specifically, you don't "get timecode," you "create timecode." There isn't any in the files to start with, so the plug-in is using the recording timestamp of the MOVs along with the duration and the frame rate of the file to generate fakey free run TC. Timecode of this nature isn't going to be too useful when attempting audio sync, unless you've roughly synced up the ToD on your camera and the external recorder. Nothing's slaved or jammed, though, so it's sort of a case of "close enough" The rest of metadata... meh. Interesting but not really usable.

                         

                        Another interesting tool I found is 5DtoRGB by Rarevision. Based on their screenshots, it's a much better conversion that using the EOS plug-in and FCP. It's Mac only at this time, but it looks like they're at work on a CLI version for Windows, that will convert to Avid's DNxHD (pretty much the same as ProRes). This program also adds TC to the MOVs it creates, like the EOS plug-in and QtChange.

                         

                        As far as Adobe is concerned, you won't see anything like the EOS plug-in unless a third-party writes it--and even then, I think you'd still have to do the process externally. Since Premiere handles any formats it is able to edit natively, there isn't any transcoding and/or rewrapping process that happens in order to create new files with a TC track. The most likely way of introducing a ToD-generated timecode track into DSLR files would be for the import to read the EXIF metadata (I think the EOS plug-in and other workflows use the THM file) and then write that into a sidecar XMP file. So long as that file is in existence, we could have auto-generated TC that would not involve any transcoding into new files.

                         

                        I'm going to join you in a feature request

                        • 9. Re: timecode and Canon DSLR
                          ExactImage Level 3

                          Hi Colin,

                           

                          Thanks for the reply on this. I don't care how they do it, a sidecar file would be fine, but it's soooo useful.  I don't even mind if it's something we had to trigger in Bridge, since Bridge seems to be where I start out with hundreds of clips.  I use Bridge to add the metadata to multiple clips at once (e.g. the tape/card name/number and scene).  Bridge can see the camera model, lens, ISO, etc for photos, but doesn't seem to bother for video.  Please, pretty please Adobe?

                           

                          Getting the camera, lens, iso, aperture and shutter speed has been useful in tracking down a couple of issues in the past, like why is this shot so noisy, oh someone stuck it at ISO6400!  That sort of thing.

                           

                           

                          Yes, you are correct that the timecode is not frame perfect, but since we sync the times on all cameras at the start of the day it's close enough to be able to pin point clips fairly accurately when looking for them.  We can then run them through PluralEyes to sync them perfectly (oh, that's another story!).

                           

                          In FCP we use a chequer board system to lay all clips on the sequence according to the timecode, using multiple tracks, one for each camera.  If we had 3 or 4 cameras rolling then we simply reduce the video size to 50% in the sequence and move them to the 4 quarters of the monitor so we can see them all at once - similar to multicam. The difference is we can still see every single clip taken by every camera throughout an entire day of shooting, on a single sequence timeline, in chronological order, more or less synchronised.  We can scrub through seeing all cameras simultaneously, and instantly see what each camera did that day. 

                           

                          Why would we want to do this? It's just a really quick way of reviewing the day's action! If the cameras were split during the day covering different things happening then this allows the editor to quickly scrub through all the clips, see what was happening at the "same time" in different locations (how do you even begin to do this without timecode or slate?).  It also familiarises them with all the clips and scenes in a single sequence for the entire day.

                           

                          Now, as Colin pointed out, the timecode is not accurate enough to sync with, but it's close enough that knowing roughly what time of day something was shot we can quickly scrub through and find a shot very quickly.  This effectively becomes our reference sequence.

                           

                          I can't find any way of doing this in Premiere Pro CS5, but it was literally 2 or 3 mouse clips in FCP to take all the clips from the logging bin and create a sequence like this. There seems no way of doing this in CS5.

                           

                          How long would this take without time code, and with CS5 as it stands today?    The THREE things I really miss from FCP are the timecode, multiclip sequence and the join through edit.   Oh well......

                           

                          Naturally, I've submitted a feature request

                           

                          Message was edited by: ExactImage - Fixed a couple of typos!