I Am In Love With My iVDR

I’ve been loving the new toy I took with me to Edinburgh since I started using it.  The Maxell iVDR is a very cool device for someone like me, someone with an old (read: miniDV) HDV recorder that needs a hot swappable hard drive solution to replace the old tape ways of yesteryear.

I’ve been shooting with it for a while, but occasionally the battery doesn’t have enough juice left for several successive shoots in one day, as I don’t always have time to recharge.  As a result, I’ve recorded some media to tape that I had counted on having on the HD for purposes of passing it along to others as raw footage, or for putting into my computer for editing (it seems to take in these files faster than real time playout.)

So today, as I shot three shows, I was confronted with two tapes I need to convert to file and hand the raw footage over on a hard drive.  I tried various combinations of plugging my cameras to capture with software other than my trusty Avid Express Pro HD, but with little success.  A lot of them don’t recognize my camera, as it is much newer than the old software I had lying around.  What I learned though is that I can switch my camera, a Sony Z1U to VCR mode, plug the iVDR in as though I’m on a shoot, play the tape, hit record on the iVDR and it will record to file on the hard disk.

This is great, especially since I offloaded the media I shot earlier to a USB drive which is currently putting it into the Avid database.  The long and the short of it is this:  I thought this would mean me capturing tape for hours, then exporting to file for hours, thus tying up the computer I’m meant to be working on, for hours.  Instead, in two hours I’ll have the show in Quicktime and by morning, my computer will be ready to edit the other stuff I’m working on.  Hooray for tech!

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