May 4, 2009

Sony - XD Formats and Drivers
By Ken Stone


As many of you know, Sony has released a number of new cameras lately, along with a variety of different XD formats, it can get to be confusing. And if any of you have been to the Sony site looking for information or drivers, it can be even more confusing.

Sony XDCAM HD & EXDCAM EX Workflows in Final Cut Pro.


XDCAM EX, SxS solid state media. Based on the PCMCIA ExpressCard/34 standard. Records using MPEG-2 Long-GOP compression (interframe). Uses 4:2:0 chroma sampling and 8-bit depth. Two recording modes:
  • HQ (high quality) records at 35Mbit/sec with a frame size of 1920 x 1080.
  • SP (HDV) recording mode records at 25Mbit/sec CBR (constant bit rate) and has a frame size of 1440x1080.

XDCAM and XDCAM HD, record to optical disc, Blu-ray disc. Different bit rates for different quality levels. 1080 formats records at 1440x1080. Interlace scanning at 25 fps and 29.97 fps. Progressive scanning at 23.98, 25, 29.97 fps. Records MPEG-2 Long-GOP compression (interframe), with 4:2:0 chroma sampling, and 8-bit depth. Three recording options: LP recording: 18Mbit/sec VBR (variable bit rate), SP (HDV) recording: 25Mbit/sec CBR (constant bit rate) and HQ recording: 35 Mbit/s VBR (variable bit rate).

XDCAM HD422, this format uses a 4:2:2 color space at 50 Mbits/sec, MPEG-2 long GOP codec. Records to Blu-ray optical disc.



There are two different solutions for ingesting XDCAM- if it's XDCAM HD the footage must come in through Sony's XDCAM Transfer software, where if its XDCAM EX, it can come in through the Log and Transfer window or through the Sony Transfer software. Each method requires a separate download from Sony's site. Sony plugin for the Log and Transfer window, Sony, full application Transfer software, Sony XDCAM Transfer Software (for XDCAM HD and XDCAM EX).

From the Sony web site: Driver Downloads

XDCAM EX Clip Browser Version 2.5 for Windows and MAC Browsing and file management (Windows and MAC) software utility for XDCAM EX SxS ExpressCard media.

SxS Drivers for Mac and Windows An updated SxS driver for Mac (version 1.0.3) has been released.

XDCAM EX NLE Workflow Guides Download the XDCAM EX editing process with the following non-linear editors...

Log and Transfer Utility for Apple FCP Version 1.00 The Log and Transfer plug in software utility for XDCAM EX


JVC SDHC solid-state (XDCAM EX)

JVC has licensed Sony's XDCAM EX codec for its two new tapeless camcorders, the handheld GY-HM100 and the shoulder-mounted GY-HM700. The cameras record MPEG-2 video with data rates up to 35 Mbit/s in either XDCAM EX or Apple Quicktime format onto SDHC memory cards.

Hope this helps.



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