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Treasured's Movie Repair Guide -- Recovering Files out of Video Recorders

The Rise of Video Recorders

A trend in the last decade was adoption of file-based workflows. Tape recording is now seldom used.
Many cameras have now HDMI, HD-SDI (or 3G/6G-SDI) and 4K-SDI (12G/6G) allowing output to be recorded externally.

External recorders extend the possibilities of video cameras in terms of format, quality, bitrate, audio capture and workflow.
Internal camera recording can also happen in parallel without external output in some cameras.

Atomos Ninja 2

Solid state drives (SSD) and high-speed connectivity through HD-SDI and Thunderbolt enable live recording of RAW and uncompressed feeds from 2K and 4K cameras.

ProRes and DNxHD formats, previously only used in post-production, are now productions formats. External Recorders are also important for Cinema, 4K and RAW workflows.

Most common failure modes seen in video recorders are loss of power during file transfer or recording, drive ejected when device not ready, loss of HD-SDI or HDMI signal, and software malfunction.

Production Formats

Format Most Common Recorders Treasured Support
ProRes AJA Ki Pro family
BlackMagic Design
Atomos Ninja, Samurai, Ronin, Shogun
Cinedeck EX MX RX
Sound Devices PIX series
Yes, including 4K since version 3
Plans: Production HQ, Event HQ
DNxHD Aja Ki Pro Mini
BlackMagic Design
Atomos Ninja 2, Samurai, Ronin, Shogun
Cinedeck EX MX RX
Sound Devices PIX series
Convergent Design Odyssey7
Yes
Plans: Production HQ, Event HQ
H.264 BlackMagic Design H.264 Pro Recorder
BlackMagic ATEM Television Studio
Cinedeck EX MX RX
Yes
Plans: Production HQ, Event HQ
MPEG-2 422
XDCAM HD
Canon XF
IMX
Convergent Design NanoFlash
Convergent Design Odyssey7
BlackMagic UltraStudio
Yes
Plans: Production HQ, Event HQ
Aja Ki Pro Quad mounted on cinema rig

4K and Cinema Formats, RAW Worflows

Format Recorders Treasured Support
ProRes 4K AJA Ki Pro Quad
BlackMagic Design
Atomos Shogun
Yes, since version 3
Plan: 4K and Cinema
Sony RAW Sony AXSR5 recorder
Yes, since version 3
Plan: 4K and Cinema
CineForm RAW Cinedeck EX MX RX Yes, since version 3
Plan: 4K and Cinema
ARRIRAW Convergent Design Odyssey7Q
Convergent Design Gemini 444
Codex Onboard PLUS
ARRI XR
Yes, since version 3
Plan: 4K and Cinema
Canon RAW Convergent Design Odyssey7Q
Convergent Design Gemini 444
Codex Onboard PLUS
AstroDesign HR series
Yes, since version 3
Plan: 4K and Cinema
Sony XAVC
AVC-Intra
BlackMagic UltraStudio
Yes, since version 3
Plan: 4K and Cinema
DNxHR Atomos Shogun
Yes, since version 3.3
Plan: 4K and Cinema
Uncompressed
8bit, 10bit
YUV, RGB
BlackMagic Design
Cinedeck EX MX RX
Convergent Design Odyssey7
Convergent Design Gemini 444
Codex Onboard
ARRI XR
Yes, since version 3.3
Plan: 4K and Cinema

Updated Oct 2015. 4K and Cinema industry are moving very fast, and this information may be inaccurate in the next months.

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Version 4.1 • June '17 • 10 MB • Mac OS X