AVCHD and Avid workflow – Transcode AVCHD to DNxHD for Avid import

If you are having troubles while importing AVCHD footage to Avid MC for post production, you may find conversion of AVCHD to DNxHD is necessary. This post explains two things. One is why you need to transcode AVHCD to DNxHD for Avid import, and the other is how you can finish format conversion using third party software.
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Why transcode AVHCD to DNxHD for Avid import?

There are lots of consumer cameras and professional camcorders record footage in AVCHD format, such as Sony FS700, FS100, Sony HXR-NX5U, Canon LEGRIA HF R506, LEGRIA HF100, Panasonic TM700, and more. To be able to edit AVCHD clips in Avid MC, some times you need to transcode AVCHD to DNxHD. There are reasons why you need to process AVCHD transcoding for Avid.

Reason #1
AVCHD-AMA plugin is provided for importing AVCHD footage to Avid systems successfully. Unfortunately, if you arestill working with Avid Media Composer version 5, you will find there is no such a plugin available for using in MC5. In this case, transcoding is necessary.

Reason #2
If your camera shot AVCHD footage in 1080p60 mode, you will find it’s problematic to use 60p AVCHD in Avid. Very few NLE applications do 1080p 60fps indeed. That’s the second reason you need to do format conversion.

Reason #3
AMA Link from Avid straight to AVCHD is an unreliable method which occasionally yields corrupt links. In this situation, you may switch to format shifting.

Reason #4
For our testing of the AVCHD and Avid workflow, importing .MTS files directly into Avid MC is painstakingly long. While some third party software like HD Video Converter, which works great as an AVCHD to Avid MC Converter, has much faster conversion speed than Avid itself. The final generated DNxHD files can be imported to Avid as fast as you expect, because the DNxHD is the language Avid MC understands and handles best. This is the fourth reason why we need to convert AVCHD to DNxHD.

Download a free trial of AVCHD to Avid MC Converter
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AVCHD and Avid workflow – Transcode AVCHD to DNxHD for Avid import

Follow these steps:
Step 1: Run HD Video Converter as an MTS to DNxHD Video Converter, then click ‘Add File’ icon to load AVCHD MTS footage. You can load directly from your camera, or load from a card reader or from an achieved folder that contains your source media.

Step 2:Choose output format for Avid MC.
From ‘Profile’ bar, select ‘Avid Media Composer’ > ‘Avid DNxHD 1080p (*.mov)’ as output format.

Important: If you’ve loaded a number of video clips to do batch conversion, please do remember ticking off ‘Apply to All’ option before you start.

Step 3: Advanced settings (for advanced users)
If you are a advanced user, you can click ‘Settings’ button and go to ‘Profile Settings’ window to custom video and audio settings like video codec, bit rate, frame rate, audio codec, bit rate, sample rate and audio channel.

Step 4: When ready, click ‘Convert’ button to start converting MTS to DNxHD that is well compatible with your Avid NLE application.

Step 5: When the conversion process finished, click ‘Open Folder’ button to get the generated DNxHD MOV files for using with Avid MC.
Tips: The AVCHD to Avid Converter is capable of processing batch conversion, so you can input loads of your MTS clips into it to do format conversion at a time. If you don’t want to wait for the entire format shifting process, you can tick off ‘Showdown computer when conversion completed’ and go away to do other things.

Also read
Open and edit Sony PMW-F55/F5 XAVC HD and 4K XAVC in Avid
Encoding Canon EOS C500 MXF for FCP and Avid on Mac Mavericks
How can I edit Sony FS700 4K/2K RAW AVCHD footage in iMovie and Avid?