Thursday, August 17, 2006

Lost blog

Hmmm... last week I wrote an entry which has mysteriously disappeared into the ether. Rather like emails seem to sometimes. Strange. When I first started using the Internet and in the old days BBSs email was somewhat unreliable. Then about 5 years ago things seemed pretty reliable most emails seemed to deliver and responses were quick. Now we seem to have drifted back to the 'bad old days' of unreliable email.

Anyway... now I forget what I wrote last week about the previous week's activities. I do know I eventually solved the problem with making good DVDs, no thanks to the Technical Support Department of Sonic [we use DVDit 6 pro which is very powerful and good].

They suggested we had the wrong/old display drivers [we were using the latest, which were old but there were none newer and it was a problem with playback on a set top DVD player anyhow]. They then suggested that the problem was due to having old firmware on the DVD writer [we had almost the latest version - but later found another problem - and it had been working fine with DVDit 2]. Finally they suggested that the DVD stock we were using was bad [we had been using the same DVDs successfully prior to switching from DVDit 2 to DVDit 6].

Eventually I found the problem was that Premiere or the Matrox capture card was somehow changing the DV tapes interlace from bottom dominance to top dominance. Why DVDit version 2 didn't object but DVDit Pro version 6 did I fail to understand. Great... now working fine... almost... in checking everything the last few DVD burns got worse and worse and eventually the DVD burner [a Pioneer A03 which we paid 700 sterling for when it first came out] died. Hah... found the problem... the stock was new stock and unless you had upgraded to the latest firmware [which they hadn't notified us of] then new stock burnt out the laser! So new DVD writer needed.

Anyhow what has happened for the last week is that I have been re-editing and re-editing the material for a project we started 12 months ago [and had too many changes en route]. I am now 50% through the final re-edit and hope by next week I can tell you all I have completed it.

What I can say is that as soon as possible we shall change from using Microsoft Windows for our editing computer to a Mac using Final Cut Pro. We have had three or four Windows based editing systems and they have always been unreliable. The reason for staying Windows had been simple - cost, but now Apple Macs are cheaper and so no reason not to use them. I have a Mac notebook which I have had for 9 months now and it hasn't had any 'blue screen of death' or lockups or anything... and it's lighter than any Windows notebook I have seen!

I wonder how many weeks of my life I would have saved if we could have afforded a Mac based video editing system... could have been out sailing instead of fighting a silly computer!

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