HOW TO: Do Edit-While-Ingest with MovieRecorder 3 and Final Cut Pro X

1. "Classic" or "Segmented" destination ?

With MovieRecorder 3, you can opt for 3 types of QuickTime destinations:

  • None
  • Segmented 
  • Classic

You can read more about these different type of destinations here. But for edit-while-ingest, you can either use Segmented or Classic and here are the pros and cons of each:

  • Segmented: There is no predefined duration to set. The file is growing upon ingest and is a much more modern format which supports more codecs such as the H.264. But, 
    • files are not usable during the first 10 seconds of recording. And they are updated every 10 seconds.
    • you can not use them in the project and see them growing there. You can only see the portion of file that was there when you inserted it in the timeline, except if you trim it manually
    • you can not use segmented movies to do edit-while-ingest in multicam clips.
    • there is currently an issue with Final Cut Pro X when segmented files are long. See explanation in point 4 below.
  • Classic: See below how to configure MovieRecorder. You have to set a predefined duration and some codecs such as H.264 are not supported but:
    • you can immediately use the file
    • you can place the whole file (with its predefined duration) in the project and cut it from there. 
    • you can use classic movies to do edit-while-ingest on multicam clips.


2. Configure Final Cut Pro X 

Important Note: the two limitations indicated below apply ONLY if you intend to copy the files that MovieRecorder is recording during the ingest. You can choose any option and disregard these limitations if you copy the files when FINISHED recording as the files will then just be regular movie files.

2.1. Do NOT "Copy files to library storage location", leave them in place !

If you Copy the files to library storage location, Final Cut Pro X will copy the file in which MovieRecorder still writes the frames, and thus this copied file will not be updated.

There are different ways to do this, but I would recommend changing the behaviour in preferences:


2.2. Make sure that you have disabled all the Transcoding and Analyze options

In the same panel, make sure that none of the transcoding or analyze buttons are checked for edit-while-capture files.  This is because Final Cut Pro X may try to transcode or analyze video frames or audio samples that are not there yet and this could lead to weird behaviors.


3. Setup for "Classic" Quicktime destinations

3.1. Disable the option "Update Movie Duration when Stopping"

You can skip this step and configure MovieRecorder the way you want if you set in and out points from the media browser of FCP X and drag only used media to the project (and do not place media that is not yet recorded in the timeline). But some workflow require to disable the option "Update Movie Duration when Stopping".

In MovieRecorder 3, when you configure a destination, in Classic mode, there is an option to "Update Movie Duration when Stopping".



If you want to know more about the Classic mode, and what the "Update Movie Duration when Stopping" option does, read the following article. 

But, to explain quickly, the idea of the Classic mode is that, as soon as the recording starts in MovieRecorder, a file is created to the duration of what is set in the settings. If you did set the movie duration to 1hour, the file will  have that duration as soon as the recording starts (without using the disk space), and this files gets filled by the new frames coming in.

But if in the end you record only 30 minutes, here is what happens when you stop the recording with or without the option

  • when the "Update Movie Duration when Stopping" option is enabled, MovieRecorder will modify the duration of the recorded file to the real recording duration, and not to that theoretical duration, so you have a file of only 30 minutes.
  • when the option "Update Movie Duration when Stopping" is disabled, MovieRecorder will NOT update the MovieDuration at the end of the recording, and you will have forever a 1 hour file, even if only 30 minutes was recorded.

The problem with FCP X with that option, is that it may refuse is some cases (see below which cases) to relink to the file and it will display this warning:FCPX_NotRelinked.png

You will then see that FCP X shows that the file that was being recorded as offline and has created another clip that has the new duration:FCPX_DuplicateFileEvent.png


If you used only portions of the file in your projects that are still present at the end of the recording, Final Cut Pro X will relink to the file.


3.2. When will FCP X refuse to relink the file ?

This will only happen if you used in a Project or in a Multicam clip a part of the file that won't be present after the duration is modified by MovieRecorder. So in our example, if you used in a Project only portions of the file that are before the 30 minutes recording, all will be fine. But if for some reason (for example if you dragged and dropped the whole file to the Project and edit from there), you have used some parts after those 30 minutes, FCP X will refuse to relink.


4. Setup for "Segmented" Quicktime destinations

With Final Cut Pro X, you can also use the segmented type of destinations. There is nothing specific to configure in MovieRecorder to be able to use the segmented files in Final Cut Pro X.

But be aware that currently, there is an issue with Final Cut Pro X when using segmented movies. It will work just great for short clips like 10 minutes or so, but when the file get longer (it will depend on your workstation), Final Cut Pro X will have performance issues. The reason is that every time a new segment is added to the file, Final Cut Pro X tries to calculate the waveform for the whole file, not just the new segment. This doesn't take too long, but new segments are added every 10 seconds, so after a while, it will take longer for Final Cut Pro X to calculate those waveforms.

You can overcome that limitation by

  • configuring Final Cut Pro X so it does not show the waveforms in the Browser, Project and also in the Inspector.
  • splitting segmented files into smaller chunks, depending on what your computer can handle.

But at the moment, the best is to use "Classic" movies for edit-while-ingest capability in Final Cut Pro X.

Apple is aware of the issue and may come with a solution for this in the future, but it seems it is not an easy thing to do.


5. About storage

As with any software, the edit-while-ingest can be done on almost any type of storage, except for AFP Volumes where you will not see new frames coming. There is not such problem with SMB volumes or Xsan Volumes. For more info on this issue, read the following article.


6. Edit-while-ingest with Multicam files

Yes it is possible to do edit-while-ingest with multi camera files, but only with "Classic" movies. With segmented movies, the files are not automatically updated in the multicam clip (they are updated in the browser). Also, in your "Classic" destination, make sure that you disable the option to "Update Movie Duration when Stopping", otherwise you will see the issue explained above and Final Cut Pro X will not be able to reconnect the files.

Once that is done, just import (in place) the files being recorded into FCP X, and use them to create a multicam file as other regular files. Just make sure that your storage as enough speed to read AND write at the same time the number of channels that you want to record and edit.

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