Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Helmet Cam - iMovie Import Issues

Not the New Year post I thought I'd be posting but I'm asking for help here.

I cannot import any cam video into iMovie, haven't been able to import since about September 2012. This makes editing them and making them into race clips impossible.

The files get put onto disk - I've used 500GB of drive space trying to import the White Plains cam clips - but there are no files in Finder, no nothing. Until about November I could see the file in Finder under iMove Events, but now no files show up.

I tried another race (a Rent) and that didn't import either.

I tried renaming the file (copy and rename) I want to import. I tried putting it on a different drive (internal, external-1, external-2).

There is enough space. I started with about 800-900 GB free - so much that I forgot the exact number Now I'm down to ~350GB free on my 1500 GB drive. As an FYI each 3.94 GB cam clip becomes 32 GB raw data in iMovie, before any editing. Finished clips, typically 8-10 minutes long, max 15 minutes, take up 50-100 GB each, and I think one is 200 GB (that's actually a shorter clip but I split the audio off the video).

Any Mac guru suggestions welcome. I am Mac illiterate for all intents and purposes.

I have a 2 GHz Intel Core i7 MacBook, OSX 10.7.5, 16 GB RAM, 500GB internal, two 1.5 TB externals, two 2.0 TB external backups (one for each 1.5 TB). I can no longer use external-1, a 1.5 TB drive, as it's has only 700 MB free, I think due to multiple import attempts. External-2 is down to 380 GB and the last 5 or so import attempts have used drive space but has produced no visible files.

My next steps: I will add another external drive (2 TB) and see if using a clean drive helps. I'll dismount the four other external drives as well. I'll try and split the file into two so that it's about 1.9 GB per file.

I've really wanted to work on clips but the import process takes a few hours and I haven't been able to babysit it and see if it errors out.

As soon as I fix this problem I'll be producing YouTube clips again.


slowroadie said...

If not being able to update is a recent thing, and you've been using the system update, there may be a driver or software update that hosed you. I'm running 10.8.2 (Mountain Lion) and have had several updates related to iMovie and Quicktime recently. I don't use either much, so can't relate to the issue you're having, but the first thing I'd try is to grab all the updates that are available.

rec said...

Which camera do you have? It's a GoPro right? When you plug the device direct to your mac do you see the files when you navigate to the camera but do not see the file when you import the video file?

Aki said...

rec - I use ContourHD. I can copy the files into the Mac and view them fine in Quicktime. They even preview in the little thumbnail in Finder. The issue is when I try to import them into iMovie.

slowroadie - I thought about this last night when Junior was up at 2 AM. I have a second Macbook that is "obsolete" and has not had updates in a while. I'll try using that one. I bet it is an update thing. I currently have no updates pending for my newer Macbook. I have a somewhat extensive docking system on the desk and leave the newer Macbook there all the time so I never tried the old Macbook.

Thanks both for the quick responses. This has been really frustrating.

rec said...

Ok, I found two links that may help. The first is a link to a discussion board and the second is a youtube walk-through. Hope this does it for you.



Aki said...

rec, thanks for the links. I've swapped out Macbooks and I'm on an older version of things now. Well at least the drop down menus are different. I just kicked off an import and a file appears in Finder. We'll see how it goes. This Macbook is a lot less powerful so hopefully I can import the events on this machine and then edit on the newer one. Right now cursor and typing is happening in strobe-like fashion. Heh.

rec said...

Glad you found an alternative until you can fix it. Slowroadie had a good idea about making sure you're up-to-date.

Let me know if those links work. FYI, I spent valuable me time googling that for you. =P

Aki said...

Haha I appreciate the sacrificed valuable me time :) I also looked a lot but did not find anything that really helped.

I sat at the (old MacBook) computer for about 3 hours while it imported one clip (White Plains 2012). It appears to have worked in that I see it on the old MacBook in iMovie. I don't see my projects that I started in the new iMovie.

It may be that I'll need to do my clips on this older machine. If that's the case I need way more RAM as the machine hangs frequently when using iMovie and it doesn't save things properly - it drops text, drops formatting, etc.

This is why, if you look at the 2010 clips carefully, you'll see some odd formatting (no outline, wrong font) or phrases that don't make sense (because I changed two phrases but only one "took"). It took about 30-45 minutes of work to clog up the machine. I spent a lot of time restarting iMovie and restarting the MacBook to keep going.

Having the choice between a lagging machine (and maybe a memory leak in iMovie) and not being able to use iMovie at all, I choose memory leak.