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Jack Norflus

Zaxcom Nomad - operating questions, plus tips & shortcuts

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I had a few bad experiences with losing wave files on a Fostex due to recorder crash, so I'll happily deal with MARF. I worked on a film with a DP that somehow convinced production not to cut on a given setup (even with dolly resets), then to move on really fast. I had a recorder crash and lost a file, which meant I lost all the audio on a given angle of a scene. Such a mess.

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It would be great if there could be an "auto check record enabled tracks" on the tape ifb matrix. Instead of manually checking and unchecking that would make it easier for me i think.

Sorry I'm not quite sure what you are looking for.

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The MARF format may seem pointless or redundant until it saves your butt. It may never happen, but it only takes one time to be "worth it"

While it hasn't happened to me - I personally know of three cases where MARF saved the day.

It's a great insurance policy.

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Sorry I'm not quite sure what you are looking for.

Pardon my bad english. I mean in the bus=>ifb page it would be great to have one box to check that would make the routing to the tape/ifb to auto follow what tracks are recording instead of manually check/uncheck a box when you enable/disable a track.

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+1 to MARF stability.  I've had a couple crashes during recording, and never lost any audio on my Nomad.  Not true for me on other systems. 

Auto updating of metadata on the mirror card would be convenient, but it works just fine for me as it is.  I frequently change metadata while rolling, and after.

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For hour-long shots, I can understand your concern about not having genlock. I think there are generally less of those kind of shoots, and even among them the sync may not be such an issue.

I've had enough issues with my Nomad on shoots with long rolls where I use my Metric Halo ULN8 on those types of gigs. I was doing a show where the rolls were more than an hour long. Since I couldn't lock the Nomad to WC, I would have to pull my files into Pro Tools at the end of the day, and make new files. What would happen was since I was jamming to external TC, and not external sync, the files would overlap or have a gap in the offline editing timeline, be it Avid or Pro Tools. I would have to butt the files up against each other, and export them. It sucked, so I stopped using the machine and pulled out the Metric Halo which obviously can lock properly to an external device. 

 

In the early days of the Nomad Glenn mentioned that the machine would be able to resolve sync from external TC much like a MOTU digital timepiece. Not sure if that development has been pushed aside. I put a post up on the Zaxcom forum asking about it. We'll see if it gets any attention. 

Out of curiosity, I vaguely recall someone saying that SD had changed the way the WAV files were written so that in a power loss scenario the most you might lose would be 4 seconds or so of audio. Did I dream this?

Back in my 788T days I had this happen, and this was in fact the case. I lost about 4 seconds only. 

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Back in my 788T days I had this happen, and this was in fact the case. I lost about 4 seconds only.

Thanks. I don't know if this can be relied upon as a constant though. Is this due to a newer method of writing the WAV files without the header problems?

I like the security of MARF, but it is interesting to reflect that as it does present the recordist with additional annoyances - mirroring, an inability to easily 'see' the files recorded, file conversion - that perhaps it is less vital a recording method than it used to be?

Merely thinking out loud and not trying to offend the Zaxcom Gods. I've already done that once this evening : (

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" Did I dream this? "

for many years now professional models of recorders writing wav (bwf) files have periodically, and seamlessly closed the files thus minimizing issues with power loss and other catastrophes to a few seconds...

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" Did I dream this? "

for many years now professional models of recorders writing wav (bwf) files have periodically, and seamlessly closed the files thus minimizing issues with power loss and other catastrophes to a few seconds...

Is that actually the case? I was under the impression that Zaxcoms development of the MARF system was to prevent data loss and file corruption in unclosed files? Apologies for being vague, but I do seem to recall stories of 788 users losing much larger quantities of data in lock up or shutdown situations than just the last few seconds? I'm happy to be corrected.

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Is that actually the case? I was under the impression that Zaxcoms development of the MARF system was to prevent data loss and file corruption in unclosed files? Apologies for being vague, but I do seem to recall stories of 788 users losing much larger quantities of data in lock up or shutdown situations than just the last few seconds? I'm happy to be corrected.

MARF was created to make the transition to file-based recording less 'risky', at least in the eyes of the earliest users - "why record on a medium prone to data corruption on power loss when the medium we have now (analogue and digital tape) doesn't do that?"

It gave the level of confidence necessary for production mixers to move to the recording format (files) that we all now use.

 

There have been reports of large chunks of data lost using recorders using FAT file systems - most manufacturers now have updated software routines or other redundancies in place to prevent data loss - there's even a pocket recorder that promises no loss of data in the event of power failure. It has enough reserve power to close a file header if you pull the batteries out, keeping all audio up to the point of power failure.

 

MARF does not make the Zaxcom recorders immune to lock-up. Early Nomads had lockup squeal and audio replaced/overlayed with processor noise. MARF is simply a way of writing data.

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MARF does not make the Zaxcom recorders immune to lock-up. Early Nomads had lockup squeal and audio replaced/overlayed with processor noise. MARF is simply a way of writing data.

Well that's the first I have heard of that. I had plenty of lock ups on beta software and never experienced or heard of this problem before

Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk

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Well that's the first I have heard of that. I had plenty of lock ups on beta software and never experienced or heard of this problem before

Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk

Funnily enough I think they were all traced back to faulty media...

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" Well that's the first I have heard of that. "

" I was under the impression "

" I do seem to recall stories of "

" There have been reports of "

" Well that's the first I have heard of that. "

 

   :blink:

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The software lock-up bug in Nomad was fixed about 1 year ago.

 

MARF is still the best way to safeguard recorded data. Any FAT32 system has to constantly write the directory in order to get any kind of short term benefit in the case of a power failure. In return it introduces the possibility of corrupting the directory in the case of a problem during the writing of the directory so it is in effect trading one problem for another. With this type of system some audio is always lost depending on the frequency of the directory updates.

 

MARF embeds the directory in the audio files so the recorder always knows how to recover the audio in the case of a power failure event. Audio can be recovered from the media even if no directory is available. In some recent cases this has come in very handy when a MAC or PC has corrupted the media directory after the card had been given to post.

 

Glenn

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Yes but not over Zaxnet.

Just put nomad in auto-load.

 

Thanks! But how can I bring the timecode from the TRX742 or similar to the nomad if not over Zaxnet?

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The erx runs on zaxnet as well... so why is it not directly autoload from zaxnet? Should be!

It's a solution, I didn't say it was a good one. I think the (whether it's intentional or not) limiting of certain Zaxnet features in different devices is a poor decision.

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