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Now importing files that are already on your hard drive or on external hard drive or even on some cards--like off of a Canon DSLR camera--is pretty easy because you can simply either use the import command or you can use the media browser. However, other card-based media is a little more difficult, and I am going to show you why. Let me go ahead and hide Premiere Pro and show you an example of what the folder structure looks like inside of a card that you may have recorded your movies to.
And you can see on my desktop I have a folder here called card. Now this could be a card such as AVCHD format that some consumer cameras use, there are others formats Panasonic's P2, there is Sony's XD cam. But if you look inside any of these cards by double-clicking on the folder, you see inside there is something that might say contents, and then you can drill down even deeper, and there's lots of folders inside here. And you might think, "Oh I'll just grab the video," but one: it's a strange format and the way these cameras record your video is the audio might be recorded separately.
There is something called metadata or information about the file in a different folder, so these all had to be combined to create a movie file that you can watch. So a traditional import command would not work. And that's where the beauty of the media browser comes into play. Let's go ahead and close this and go back to Premiere Pro. Now if I try to import through the traditional import method, and I pointed at this card that's on my desktop, it won't be able to bring this. And if I click import it would get confused, it wouldn't bring in all the media, and it would actually give me a generic error.
And we know that generic errors are the ones that we should most fear. So let's go ahead and delete that and switch over to the media browser. Going back to my desktop in my Home directory, once again I see the card. Now if I select the card by double-clicking, instead of seeing all that information, I actually see video files. Let me go ahead and press the Tilde key to show you how this looks. So instead of seeing all those individual folders with all those files inside that make no sense, I can actually see the clips and the information about them.
I am going to switch over from the List view to the Thumbnail view, and once again, as you can see I can use Hover scrub to see if these are clips that I actually want to bring in. Because not everything you shoot on your card, you might want to bring in. Often times I have at least 20 minutes of the lens cap or at least my feet as I'm running along trying to get a shot. Now another thing that changes when it looks at a card is instead of viewing as file you see it automatically detects in this case that the card was recorded using the Panasonic P2 format.
So it's only showing me the information on the card that is in the P2 format. If for some reason--and this is unlikely-- you've thrown some additional media on the card just because you want to use it to move it from one machine to another, if you switch back to File directory you would actually see the card exactly as I saw it when I closed Adobe Premiere, and we looked at the file structure. So let's step back up one level to where we see the word contents, and I can switch back from file directory back to Panasonic P2.
But as you can see from the grayed out list, there is a variety of cards that the media browser can interpret. Another thing to keep in mind, if you are shooting on cards that sometimes when you're shooting you can have two cards in your camera and the video actually flows from being recorded on the first card onto a second card. This is commonly referred to as spanned media, which means the media spans across the first card into the second card. And the beautiful thing about the media browser is it can import media that crosses over from one card to another, and it can do this automatically.
Once I've looked at the images that I want, I can simply select them and just like we did in importing files I can right-click and import them directly into my project. Now if you skip to the last movie because you say I only work in cards, I want to reinforce something that I said there, and that is Premiere Pro only points to the media that's on that card. So if you input media off a card and eject the card, it's going to go off-line.
And if you record over that card, you are going to lose your media for ever, so best practices says as soon as your record onto a card, put that card into a card reader, plug it into your computer, and copy the entire card onto your hard drive. I'm going to go back and close this for just one second because this is a big mistake that a lot of new editors do. They put the card into their computer, open it up and think they only need the video files and just drag this folder.
If you do this you'll probably end up losing all of your media, you won't have any of your sound, any of the proxies or any of the metadata. So remember, when copying a card drag the entire card, don't open it up, don't change anything, don't add anything, don't delete anything. Popping back into Premiere Pro, we are going to import these files, and you will see they immediately appear in the Projects section of our panel.
I'll just set the tilde key so this returns to the exact same format that's probably on your desktop.
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