All about cineXinsert – the engine for correcting and changing files, instead of re-exporting
How often have you wasted half a day, exporting and viewing a show master, only to find a flash-frame or something basic like a spelling mistake?
Simply put, Cinedecks patent pending cineXinsert engine, allows you to replace a single frame or multiple frames of video, an audio stem or track, a section of closed captions or multiple items simultaneously, in a closed and flattened file. The most popular editing intermediates including DNx, ProRes, AVC-I and XDCAM HD can be directly changed while maintaining complete compatibility. Cinedeck’s File-based Insert Edit also supports Uncompressed and DPX files to assist special effects workflows that require really excessive render times.
The bottom line, deliverables that require extensive rendering or multiple steps and passes for consolidation into file form, no longer need to be completely redone. Fixes and changes are easy!
Cinedeck’s revolutionary File-based Insert Editing is wrapper independent and supports files created anywhere. Cinedeck systems with the cineXinsert engine are controlled by a variety of editing and finishing systems such as, Avid Media Composer, Adobe Premiere, Final Cut, SRW Tape decks and Protools, using standard RS-422.
File-based Insert Edit is a game changer, allowing a truly tapeless workflow, from start to finish.
Facts about File-based Insert Edit
Cinedeck Insert Edit is a game-changing feature allowing efficiency breakthroughs for post workflows that have never been thought possible. Read on to find out why it matters and how it works.
RADICALLY NEW WORKFLOW
Cinedeck Insert-Edit provides a radically new post workflow. The resulting file after Insert-Edit is NOT a different file or some form of MXF package or Quicktime reference file; it is a flat, fully compatible, normal ProRes, DNxHD, AVC-lntra, JPEG2000 and XDCAM file. Unlike the process of editing the metadata of something like a MXF AS-11 file to point to content newly added into the package, when an insert is done using Cinedeck’s Insert-Edit, you are actually replacing parts of the original flat video and audio essence.
Moreover, because changes are being written into the flat audio and video essence, file compatibility is maintained. The resulting file after inserting is the same file; it’s just that some audio or video frames were replaced.
WHAT DOES IT DO?
Cinedeck Insert-Edit solves the time and resource-sucking problem of repeating an entire export and QC process, just to make a small change in a program, by giving you direct access to the video and audio essence in your flat deliverable files. In other words, Insert Edit allows content to be accurately replaced in a file based on timecode in and out points, pretty much just like working on tape.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
Cinedeck Insert-Edit understands where the content is located in the files, somewhat the same way a tape machine understands where frames reside on a tape, allowing you to accurately go in and replace specific video or audio content. So instead of exporting an entire program after making a change in your non-linear system, you just export the changed section – just the minimum of required content.
Digital Cuts and inserts can also be done from Avid Media Composer and Final Cut Pro, directly to your Cinedeck, making your job even easier. (more about this)
HOW WILL THIS HELP ME?
Insert-Edit can reduce a multi-hour or multi-day re-export and QC process to just a few minutes by editing new content directly into a ProRes, DNxHD or AVC-lntra flat deliverable file!
Instead of a massive multi-step dance to produce a new corrected deliverable file, with Insert-Edit in your arsenal, you simply create a small file containing just the elements you need to replace.
WHICH FILE TYPES?
Cinedeck Insert-Edit currently supports Apple ProRes, Avid DNxHD ond AVC-lntra, JPEG200 and XDCAM files. The content can be contained in a MOV (quicktime), MXF Op1A, or MXF OpAtom wrapper and the files to be edited can be from anywhere. They might come from Final Cut, Media Composer, Premiere or any number of other production systems … In any case, they do not need to be Cinedeck generated; but of course, Cinedeck files can be edited as well. As long as your file is not some sort of non-standard creation, Insert-Edit can make changes in it and save you time.
It is also important to point out that the resulting file is NOT some form of MXF package or Quicklime Reference file. Unlike the process of editing the metadata of something like a MXF AS-11 file to point to content newly added into the package, when an insert is done using Cinedeck’s Insert-Edit, you are actually replacing parts of the original flat video and audio essence.
THIS MEANS SEVERAL THINGS:
- The process not limited to AS- 11 files.
- The Cinedeck system can change MOV, MXF OpAtom, MXF Op1A or the more specific DPP Op1A files, containing ProRes, DNxHD or AVC-lntra essence.
- Because changes are being written into the flat audio and video essence, file compatibility is maintained.
- The resulting file after inserting is the same file; it’sjust that some audio or video frames were replaced.
And for those of you who are curious, Cinedeck is not stopping there. The Cinedeck recording systems support just about every codec used in production today so additional codec support for Insert-Edit is planned.
WORKING WITH PRE-STRIPED FILES
Pre-black a file with the desired format and add video and/ or audio ANYWHERE and Anytime – just like a blacked tape. Working with a pre-striped or “black file” is analogous to using a blacked tape in that you create a file with format, codec, timecode, up to 32 audio tracks, etc. Instead of real-time like tape, it only takes about six minutes to create an hour long blacked file. Also, as with tape, you can have pre-blacked-files saved on a disk (a virtual shelf of sorts) and simply copy one to your workspace, so you save time no matter what. Once you have your blacked file, Cinedeck’s insert editing can be used to place video and/or audio content into the file, anywhere and anytime.
Many recording systems are limited to just a few audio tracks, sometimes just 4, sometimes, just 8 and SDI only carries 16 channels but files can support more. Using Insert-Edit, it is possible to work with up to 32 channels of audio in your deliverable file.
And instead of dealing with tape or transferring the finished audio to the video editors,using Pro Tools’ transport controls, your sound team can directly punch in and out of video while in Cinedeck’s insert record mode to edit audio for master files in real-time. Or, insert the audio layoff with a standard 3-point edit.
After setting up the Cinedeck project, you can use Avid’s “Auto-configure” to select the SRW as the connected deck, set the in and out point on the Media Composer timeline as you normally would and start the insert. Media Composer’s Digital Cut tool and Timeline completely control the in and out points as well as audio and video track selection. Digital cut options like “Entire Sequence” and “Mark In” or “Record Deck Time” for deck control are all available..
Once you’ve started an insert, a border around the active Cinedeck channel blinks red to note “preroll”, then turns solid red, indicating the new content from Media Composer is being written over the existing frames between the in and out points selected on your timeline.
Also, you can visually QC your newly inserted frames in real-time by simultaneously playing out the target file on a second Cinedeck channel or another player of your choice. Once the newly inserted content is verified, you’re finished!
File-based Insert Edit – A Cost Analysis
No more re-export, re-encode, or re-QC
Although nothing short of a miracle, non-linear editing has some significant limitations. If a change to a program is required, even just a simple shot change, it is necessary to go back to the timeline, make the changes and then, re-export the complete program. That process can be excruciating, especially for long form programming. And then, the resulting file needs to be run through quality control again, which if nothing else, means someone watching the program from start to finish, wasting time, money and in some cases, preventing shows from being delivered on time.
As a work-around, some post-production facilities export edited shows to tape and use tape-based insert edits for changes. Tape can also provide a pathway to delivering file types not directly supported by their particular finishing systems. Using File-based Insert Edit, you can frame-accurately replace specific frames of audio, video and closed captioning without the need to completely re-export or re-render. Since only the newly inserted segments have changed, only those segments need to be QC’d. File-based Insert Edit brings the advantages of tape-based workflows to files.
We asked some industry friends to help us understand the cost savings afforded by insert edit and here’s what they came up with. For tape intermediate and NLE export workflows, the time for any change to an hour long program is the edit time plus about an hour to export and an hour to QC so two hours of labor at $125 ~ $150 per change.
How is this possible?
With Cinedeck’s Insert Edit, making a change takes about as long as the change itself, so a 1-minute insert takes 1 minutes to execute and another 1 minutes to QC. Full confidence record saves even more time because you can simultaneously record and QC, cutting the total time in half. This means labor costs are slashed to a fraction of what is required for tape intermediate or NLE Export workflows.
Cinedeck File-Based Insert Editing & Live-to-File:
The Ultimate “Virtual Tape” Environment
Cinedeck’s File-Based Insert Editing & Live-to-File recording capabilities make for the ultimate “Virtual Tape” environment by bringing back two advantages, lost when video tape was removed from the production equation. Simply put, Cinedecks allow you to place or replace video or audio in pre-existing files and you can build a show in pieces, as would be done in assemble editing. All of this is done with flat compatible files.
Although nothing short of a miracle, electronic non-linear editing has a few significant limitations. If a change to a program is required, even just a simple shot change, it is necessary to go back to the timeline, make the changes and then, re-export the complete program. That export process can be excruciating, especially for long form programming. And then, the resulting file needs to be run through quality control again, which if nothing else, means someone watching the program from start to finish, wasting time, money and in some cases, preventing shows from being delivered on time.
As a work-around, some post-production facilities currently export edited shows to tape and use tape-based insert edits for changes. Those tapes can also provide a pathway to delivering file types not directly supported by their particular finishing systems. Another limitation is that many programs, especially daily, ‘current events’ broadcast productions are recorded live though not actually aired live. In theory, these recordings could be directly used however, in most cases some changes need to occur. This means an elaborate and inefficient non-linear import, edit and export process that is time consuming, especially when compared to delivering a tape directly after a recording is complete.
Cinedeck’s File-based Editing technology addresses many limitations and requirements
Insert Baseband mode allows the replacement of content in any selected region of a closed file. Regardless of where the files were created, inserts can be made into ProRes, DNxHD, AVC-Intra, JPEG 2000, XDCAM HD and Cinedeck VMM (Virtual Mastering Media) files. Edits can be video only, audio only or audio with video. Inserts can be done channel-to-channel on a Cinedeck or directly from an edit system. To make an insert edit, the user opens virtually any file on the Cinedeck, sets edit points along with the appropriate video and or audio tracks which need replacing and triggers insert recording to fill in the selected area with whatever is coming into the SDI input. The insert process can be driven from your non-linear editor or, channel-to-channel on the Cinedeck.
A typical scenario:
- Legal and the Producer come with a last minute video change
- On the timeline, an embargoed shot is replaced with licensed content
- When needed, effect(s) etc., are rendered “in-to-out”
- Instead of re-outputting the whole timeline, an insert edit of just the changed content is made directly into the previously recorded file.
This procedure results in a double time savings… The change process is much faster and if the file has already been run through a quality check, all that needs to be confirmed is the changed portion. The rest of the file has not been touched.
Cinedeck’s “Pause & Seek” mode is the closest to what many know from tape as assemble recording or assemble editing, with the unique addition that with Pause & Seek, multiple record channels can be simultaneously controlled. Two examples for this are building a show master while keeping a few ISO channels in sync with the master or creating multiple masters with different codec and wrapper combinations so for example, two ProRes masters, a DNxHD master and a AVC-Intra master.
Operation in this mode is straightforward:
- Put the channel(s) in gang record mode and start recording
- Pause the recording(s)
- Put the channels into gang play and cue one of the channels to a starting point in the recorded content
- Take the channel(s) out of pause to continue the recording(s)
After multiple pause and record events, stop is pressed to finally close the file(s) and recording is complete.
Digital Cut/Print to Tape Recording creates new files using any codec and wrapper, directly from a non-linear editor, using the same procedure as recording to tape. The Cinedeck emulates a Sony SRW-5500 so the user sets things up on the editor as they normally would for a Digital Cut to tape while on the Cinedeck, the appropriate codec, wrapper and a file destination are selected.
The typical steps:
- Edit 1 hour show
- Complete all required renders, etc.
- Digital Cut to a file via Cinedeck using any codec.
This same functionality is available for editing platforms such as Adobe Premiere, Avid and Final Cut.
High end VTRs provide a layer of assurance with their confidence record mode, the ability to display an off-tape playback signal while recording. During insert recordings on a Cinedeck, Total Confidence Record allows you to shuttle, play and scrub, any portion of a file on any player while still recording, so you can check and double check, any part of a file, anytime, making the QC process much more efficient.
VMM – Virtual Mastering Media like tape, are files, pre-striped or blacked with format, codec, timecode, audio tracks, etc. and are an extension of Insert Baseband mode. Creating VMM can be significantly faster than real-time but similar to tape, you can have a library of VMM on disk and simply copy one to your workspace, which lends even more efficiency and accuracy is enhanced because VMM also act as a preset for the file specification. With Virtual Mastering Media, Total Confidence Recording is available for entire programs while for “live-to-file” recording, inserts can be placed randomly and you can start and stop your work anytime so a production can be built over hours, days or weeks.
Some of the new features, now part of Cinedeck’s virtual tape environment:
- 32 channels of audio are supported in MOV and MXF files
SDI only carries 16 channels but using insert edit in a Digital Cut scenario or channel-to-channel, the user can record video with 16 audio tracks and then go back and insert up to an additional 16 channels of audio.
- Pro Tools control is now supported in chase mode and standard 3-point edit mode
Instead of passing the audio files to a video editor for insertion, with Pro Tools control, audio tracks can be directly inserted into a file to accompany the video.
As a last clarification… Unlike the process of editing the metadata of an AS-11 file to point to content newly added into the package, when an insert is done using the Cinedeck Insert Edit, you are actually writing into and replacing parts of the original flat video and audio essence which means several things;
- The process is not limited to AS-11 files. The Cinedeck system can make changes in many file types, ProRes, DNxHD, AVC-I, etc., and they can be wrapped as MOV, MXF OpAtom, Op1A or the more specific DPP Op1A.
- Because changes are being written into the flat audio and video essence, file compatibility is maintained. The resulting file after the insert is the same file; it’s just that some audio or video frames have been replaced.
With all of these editing capabilities, (like on tape) when you get to the end you are done, there is no export, render, consolidate, etc… This is absolutely a game changing solution for the real problem of late fixes and the many programs that need to be produced “Live-to-File”.