There are many variables a


There are many variables and I am not knowledgeable enough to explain in layman’s terms the various compression formulas and results. Basically, simple ingestion/digitizing of DV video from a MiniDV videotape used in a GL2 has a minimum requirement of 13 GB per hour. What you do with it, how you work with it, the compression schemes you use on it, your computer, software and DVD output, or web site output size and many other variables will directly effect the size of the files you work with.

Digital video applied with standard DV/DVCPRO compression takes up about 250 megabytes per minute or 13 gigabytes per hour.

An example video can have a duration (T) of 1 hour (3600sec), a frame size of 640×480 (WxH) at a color depth of 24bits and a frame rate of 25fps. This example video has the following properties:

  • pixels per frame = 640 * 480 = 307,200
  • bits per frame = 307,200 * 24 = 7,372,800 = 7.37Mbits
  • bit rate (BR) = 7.37 * 25 = 184.25Mbits/sec
  • video size (VS) = 184Mbits/sec * 3600sec = 662,400Mbits = 82,800Mbytes = 82.8Gbytes

My editing workstation is a Mac Pro 8-core unit with 16 gigs of RAM memory. I have installed three terabytes of hard drive storage set up exclusively for video resources. My system drive is a 350 GB unit. I like having plenty of resource storage space. HD capacity and storage is comparatively cheap and it is not wise in today’s video editing environments to cheap out on storage. More is always better, and I like having the options to take on a short 8-min montage with some fancy production work, or a movie-length project with gobs of resource materials, a wedding project and anything between. I often have more than one project under way at a time.

In my previous systems I often was under nourished with storage capacity and had to reuse hard drives before I was willing to erase the original work files. Consequently there were times when situations called for me returning to a project and I had to go through the digitizing process all over again. I hope to never have to go that route again.

In another system I had a series of hard drives in sleds that I could exchange from project to project. That was a GREAT system to work with, and I continue that with external storage capacities beyond my 3TB work drives. My Drobo and some a couple of jbods (just a bunch of hard drives) help me keep resources at hand, but off my primary production HDs. I can fire them up as needed, access resources as needed, and continue with my work flow without interrupting the creative process while locating something on a back up HD, CD, DVD or elsewhere. There’s a lot to be said about being able to sustain your focus and productive juices without having to stop and think…

…sometimes. πŸ™‚

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