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Forums Sony Cameras XDCam HD 422 – excruciatingly slow transfer speeds

  • XDCam HD 422 – excruciatingly slow transfer speeds

     Phillip Wood updated 6 years, 2 months ago 10 Members · 22 Posts
  • Jim Curtis

    September 27, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    Sorry if this is the wrong forum, but I don’t see one for XDCam HD, and this seems the closest to it.

    I was recently given 4 Sony rewritable optical disks with about 23G on each one. I was also loaned my clients Sony PDW-U1 drive unit to do the transfers. This is a USB2 device; no other interface is available.

    I have two MacPro3,1 computers, both supposedly USB2 capable. On the first MP, it was taking about 4 hours to transfer the 23G to my super-fast RAID via the Finder. This seemed outrageous, so I tried it on my second MP. I got improved performance, but it still was two hours to transfer to a single internal SATA drive.

    I tried two different USB cables, so I don’t think that was the issue.

    What in the wild wild world of sports is a going on here?

    This is slower than real-time.

    Is anybody else here cutting with these disks? It’s the format for XDCam HD 422 and similar variants.

    Thanks,

    Jim Curtis
    jamesphilipcurtis.com

    MacPro 3,1; 2×4 3GHz; 32G RAM all the same brand; 10.6.8; QT 7.6.6; FCS3; CS5.5; MC 5.5; Kona LHi in PCI slot 3 (9.0.3); Primary display: 30″ ACD; Monitoring: Kona LHi SDI to AJA HDP2 converter to HDMI on the HP DreamColor.

  • Noah Kadner

    September 27, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    Sadly that’s pretty much the nature of the beast. Slow media technology + slow connection cable. Those drives are likely USB1 for Mac and Sony’s Mac support is fairly lagging.

    Noah

    Call Box Training.
    Featuring the Panasonic GH2 and GoPro HD Hero.

  • Andy Mees

    September 27, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    Nope, they’re USB2 Noah.

    Jim, Apple have been a bit rubbish with their own USB2 support in the past, and they only really started getting it together in late 2008 when it seems they may have started changing the USB controller chip they were using … am afraid your early 2008 MacPro’s may not have enjoyed that revision, so part of your issue may indeed be hardware related.

    That said, you might want to try reinstalling the drivers; creating and using a new user account; try with your Mac booted from a clean backup system; try using the drive on a different Mac and/or PC etc etc … the usual barrage of troubleshooting steps.

    Cheers
    Andy

  • Jim Curtis

    September 27, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    Thanks for your reply, Noah.

    Sony advertises the PDW-U1 Drive Unit as a “high-speed” USB2 device.

    (They came out with a USB3 version Sept. 1 for $5700+.)

    USB2 has a theoretical speed of 480 Mb/s. USB1 is 1.5 Mb/s.

    The Sony site claims “The Professional Disc’s data transfer rate is 86 Mb/s from a single optical head unit and 172 Mb/s on a dual head deck…”

    That’s better than USB1, but still well below the theoretical maximum of USB2; about one fifth (single head).

    Still pretty dismal. And as you point out, apparently “the nature of the beast.”

    Thanks again.

    Jim Curtis
    jamesphilipcurtis.com

    MacPro 3,1; 2×4 3GHz; 32G RAM all the same brand; 10.6.8; QT 7.6.6; FCS3; CS5.5; MC 5.5; Kona LHi in PCI slot 3 (9.0.3); Primary display: 30″ ACD; Monitoring: Kona LHi SDI to AJA HDP2 converter to HDMI on the HP DreamColor.

  • Jim Curtis

    September 27, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    Hi Andy, you posted as I was responding to Noah.

    I tried the PDW-U1 Drive Unit on three different Macs: two MacPro3,1 – which had different results (one was twice as fast as the other) – and a MacBookPro4,1 (the newest model of Mac that I own). I still got dismal performance copying from the PDW to my internal drive.

    Aren’t USB drivers part of the Mac OS? If not, how would one update them? I don’t think I’ve ever installed a USB driver. I installed a USB3 PCIe card on one MacPro, and that required a driver, but I’m fairly certain that was for the card, not USB per se.

    Thanks,

    Jim Curtis
    jamesphilipcurtis.com

    MacPro 3,1; 2×4 3GHz; 32G RAM all the same brand; 10.6.8; QT 7.6.6; FCS3; CS5.5; MC 5.5; Kona LHi in PCI slot 3 (9.0.3); Primary display: 30″ ACD; Monitoring: Kona LHi SDI to AJA HDP2 converter to HDMI on the HP DreamColor.

  • Jim Curtis

    September 27, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    I just thought of a workaround, and wanted to get your thoughts.

    If it’s Mac USB2 support that sucks, would it make sense to buy a cheap Windows laptop that had USB2 and Gigabyte ethernet just to get media off these optical disks faster?

    Jim Curtis
    jamesphilipcurtis.com

    MacPro 3,1; 2×4 3GHz; 32G RAM all the same brand; 10.6.8; QT 7.6.6; FCS3; CS5.5; MC 5.5; Kona LHi in PCI slot 3 (9.0.3); Primary display: 30″ ACD; Monitoring: Kona LHi SDI to AJA HDP2 converter to HDMI on the HP DreamColor.

  • Andy Mees

    September 27, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    Hi Jim

    Am talking about reinstalling the Sony XDCAM Drive software … not Apple’s USB drivers.

    As for the speed of working with the XDCAM optical media, using single head equipment (connected vi FW … but the bottleneck is the speed of working with the optical disc technolgy not the interconnect) I can import the contents of a full 23GB disc (about 60-90 minutes of footage) using XDCAM Transfer in about 40 minutes or so. With your U1 I’d think you should be able to do the same in around 20 minutes.

    Cheers
    Andy

  • Andy Mees

    September 27, 2011 at 4:56 pm

    See my post above Jim … although the raw and sustainable speed of the Mac’s USB implementation was never quite up to that of it’s PC cousins, I don’t think the issue you’re having is directly due to your Mac’s USB connectivity per se. If its taking you 2hrs to import the contents of a single 23GB disc then you have some other problem at play. What version of the XDCAM Drive software and XDCAM Transfer are you using?

  • Jim Curtis

    September 27, 2011 at 5:06 pm

    Andy, I don’t see any XDCam drive software on the Sony site.* I see XDCam Transfer, AMA plug for Avid, SxS card and iLink drivers, but nothing for the drive unit in question.

    Site link:

    And these speeds I’m giving you are just for doing a Finder copy of the PROAV folder. The times double when using ChronoSync to do a copy and verify pass.

    Once I get the PROAV folders copied, the re-wrap to QT is fairly speedy using the Sony XDCam Transfer app.

    If you’re able to copy a 23GB disk in 40 minutes, then I’ve definitely got something rotten going on here.

    I see on the Sony site that there is a firmware updates for this drive unit. It may have never been applied (As I mentioned, this is a loaner unit.).

    I will install the latest (They actually have one for Mac! Yay!), and see if that improves anything.

    Thanks again,

    Jim Curtis
    jamesphilipcurtis.com

    MacPro 3,1; 2×4 3GHz; 32G RAM all the same brand; 10.6.8; QT 7.6.6; FCS3; CS5.5; MC 5.5; Kona LHi in PCI slot 3 (9.0.3); Primary display: 30″ ACD; Monitoring: Kona LHi SDI to AJA HDP2 converter to HDMI on the HP DreamColor.

  • Rafael Amador

    September 27, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    I second Andy.
    That’s too slow even for a very slow USB.
    What kind of media HD are you downloading to?
    rafael

    http://www.nagavideo.com

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