Summary: Is there any way to handle PMW-300 MXF media in Avid and FCP natively? To be able to edit Sony PMW-300 XDCAM MXF files on Avid and FCP smoothly, you’d better transcode them to DNxHD for Avid and to Apple ProRes for FCP.
Question: “Hi, all. I recently bought a Sony PMW-300 XDCAM camcorder which puts all video files in MXF wrapper. Personally, I have Avid Media Composer and Final Cut Pro 7 to do post production. Unfortunately, neither Avid MC nor FCP 7 recognized the XDCAM MXF files coming out of the PMW-300. Why is this happen? In my understanding, Avid Media Composer and FCP 7 will edit MXF without transcoding. Is there any way to handle PMW-300 MXF media in Avid and FCP natively? Any suggestion would be greatly appreciated.”
Answer: Theoretically speaking, Avid Media Composer will edit MXF without converting. But with FCP 7, you will need to use the Sony XDCAM Transfer Utility to rewrap the PMW-300 XDCAM MXF into QuickTimes files. However, due to different computer environments, this would not always work as expected. In this case, you will need to convert Sony PMW-300 MXF to DNxHD for Avid, and transcode Sony PMW-300 XDCAM MXF to Apple ProRes for FCP, so as to make Avid and FCP recognize Sony PMW-300 footage natively. This requires third party software like HD Video Converter.
As the name implies, the HD Video Converter is a converter program designed for transcoding HD media, including camera and camcorder videos files to whatever format you need with best video and audio synchronization. With this little tool, you are able to create editable files for NLEs like FCP 6/7, FCP X, iMovie, Final Cut Express, Avid MC, Pinnacle Studio, DaVinci Resolve, Premiere Pro CS 6, Sony Vegas, etc. and export playable files for iOS devices, Android devices, HD Media Players, Game consoles and more.
How to transcode Sony PMW-300 XDCAM MXF files for editing with Avid MC and FCP 7?
In order to generate editable files for Avid MC and FCP 7, follow these steps:
Step 1: Run HD Video Converter as a professional Sony PMW-300 MXF Converter. When the main interface pops up, clicking on ‘Add File’ button to load your PMW-300 source media.
Step 2：Choose output format for Avid MC and FCP 7
To output suitable files for Avid MC, from the format bar, choose ‘Avid DNxHD(*.mov)’ as output format from ‘Avid Media Composer’ column.
To create editable files for FCP 7, from the format bar, select ‘Apple ProRes 422 (*.mov)’ as output format from ‘Final Cut Pro’ catalogue. The ProRes is able workable in the former version FCP 6 and the later version FCP X.
Please note: The Apple ProRes outputs are only available in the Mac version of HD Video Converter.
Step 3: If necessary, click ‘Settings’ button to do advanced settings.
Step 4: When ready, click ‘Convert’ button to start transcoding PMW-300 MXF to QuickTime files for Avid and Final Cut Pro.
Step 5: When finished, click ‘Open Folder’ button to get the generated DNxHD MOV files or ProRes MOV files for using with Avid MC or FCP 7/6/X.
Tips: The PMW-300 MXF to QuickTime Converter is capable of processing batch conversion, so you can input loads of your MXF clips into it to do format conversion at a time. If you don’t want to wait for the entire process of MXF to QT conversion, you can tick off ‘Showdown computer after conversion’ and go away to do other things.
We believe that you are able to edit Sony PMW-300 XDCAM MXF media smoothly in both Avid Media Composer and Final Cut Pro through this way.