Workflows with Sony PXW Z150 4K and Avid Media Composer

Outline: We write this article to give you en easy way to edit Sony PXW Z150 XAVC-L files in Avid Media Composer. Hope it can be useful to you.

Recently Sony has launched their latest XDCAM professional camcorder the PXW-Z150, which is an all-in-one 4K camera with fixed zoom len. The sensor is 1-inch and coupled to a 12x optical zoom. It records up to 30P 4K in the professional XAVC Long format at a maximum of 100Mbps and Full HD in XAVC Long 4:2:2 10-bit at 50Mbps. 


For those not familiar, XAVC L is Sony's professional MXF-wrapped long GOP codec, 10-bit 4:2:2 (including existing UHD and 4K as of firmware update 2.0). Although It can be a great joy for you to upload or share amazing XAVC L files to your friends or social website after editing with Avid Media Composer, you may failed due to the codec compatibility issues. Actually, XAVC-L is not so popular and widely used, not only Avid Media Composer, other editing software also have difficulties in dealing with XAVC-L files. To avoid this issue, use a codec that is optimized video editing, such as Avid’s DNxHD codec. Also , as you try to edit 4K files, you may take a look at the following notes: 

First: 4K editing requires a lot about: 
Storage Requirements for 4K media (working with proxy media) 
Computer Processing Power 
Bandwidth requirements (high speed disk arrays / solid state storage) 
Organizational Structure of Media 
Software Project Settings 

Second: In order to work within a 4K project you must have Avid Media Composer 8.3 or higher 

So if you wanna start a new project of editing Sony PXW Z150 4K XAVC-L files in Avid Media Composer, you can use a third party software to convert XAVC-L files to a format the fits the Avid Which you try to ingest and downscale the resolution to 1080P. In doing so, this will improve playback performance, and/or the time it takes to import media. 

Here I highly recommend you the powerful but easy to use Pavtube HD Video for Mac, it is the versatile 4K XAVC-L to Avid Media Composer transcoding software on Mac, the one used here can meet your demands with its simple interface, but rich functions: 

  • Transcode Sony PXW Z150 4K XAVC-L files to DNxHD for Avid Meida Composer with keeping video quality. 
  • Provide simple editing function like trimming, cropping, adding special effect and inserting subtitles. 
  • Compress 4k videos to 1080p files with smaller size for smoothly editing 
  • Allow you to set the video/audio output parameters to get customized video effect. 
  • Convert 4K files to editable footage for FCP, FCE, iMovieAdobe Premiere, After Effects, iPhoto, Kdenlive, Keynote, etc. 
  • Rewrap 4K videos for playback on iPhone (6S/6S Plus)iPad (Pro/Mini 4), Galaxy Note (5), Roku (4), Apple TV (4), etc.(Review)



Load XAVC-L clips Converting Sony PXW-Z150 4K XAVC-L video to Avid Media Composer friendly format on Mac 

Step 1: Run the Sony XAVC-L to Avid Converter and click “Add file” or “Add from folder” button, browse to the XAVC-L footages and load them to the converter for conversion. You can check the “Merge into one” box to join several XAVC-L files together. 


Step 2: Choose a proper output format 

You just need to go to Final Cut Pro column by choosing “Apple ProRes 422 (HQ) (*.mov)” as best video format for editing Sony XAVC-L in Final Cut Pro,final Cut Express, iMovie, Premiere with good video quality. 


Tip: Click “Settings” button if you’d like to customize advanced audio and video parameters like Video Codec, aspect ratio, bit rate, frame rate, Audio codec, sample rate, audio channels. 

Note: In Avid Media Composer, There are close to 40 different variations of 4K frame sizes, and frame rates. If you're looking for something that matches the standard consumer 4K television, use the Ultra HD format at 29.97 frames per second. It's listed as 3840x2160p/29.97. 


Step 3: Start converting Sony PXW-FS7 XAVC-L to Avid 

When you finish all settings, hit “Convert” button to start XAVC-L Mac conversion. You can follow the conversion process from the pop-up windows. 

After the conversion, it will be easy for you to import Sony PXW-Z150 footage into Avid for editing or do whatever you want with the converted XAVC-L footages on Mac OS X. 

Additional Tip: More than Avid Media Composer, you can also easily convert Sony PXW-Z150 XAVC-L to iMovie, FCP, FCE, Premiere Pro, etc with Pavtube HD Converter for Mac. 

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