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Is there any way to recover damaged .mov files???

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
We were recording an event with our studio cameras by capturing live into final cut pro. Unfortunately, about three hours into the event the power in the building went out due to bad weather in the area. There is a file in the capture scratch folder for the event (23gigs), but the file does not open. We've tried converting it with Compressor, iSquint, ProCoder, FileJuicer...but no program recognizes the file.

Any suggestions?

Similar situations:
http://forums.techguy.org/all-other-...upted-mov.html
http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/8/903771
post #2 of 5
Media files typically have a header at the beginning of the file and sometimes a footer at the end. The data goes in between. Sometimes if either the header or footer are missing, they can be reconstructed by creating a working file of the same type and copying the hex codes over.

You usually have to be pretty accurate or you can get corrupt parts of the video as it decodes the data from the wrong start point.

All this is done using a Hex editor.

http://ridiculousfish.com/hexfiend/
http://www.versiontracker.com/dyn/moreinfo/macosx/10658

You'll be lucky if the file actually has any data in it though. It may be filled with zeroes when you open it in one of those programs - if so, it's not recoverable as you don't have any data. When a file is being written, it opens up a file reference. If it doesn't close it properly, it can flush the entire file. This is just the way that computers work. Even with resumable downloads like torrents, if the computer crashes during a 2GB download, it can easily reset back to zero instantly - the file size stays the same, the data is just zeroed out. Because it's not allocating new space, it can do this very quickly.

This is one advantage that tape recording still has over digital recording. It simply can't destroy any of the information that's already been stored. If you'd split the digital recording into a new file after every couple of minutes, you would only have lost at most 2 minutes of footage. It does become a bit of nuisance to join them up again though and you can get dodgy frames in something like HDV as it's not an i-frame compression like DV, DVC Pro or AIC.

Instead of doing it live using a computer where anything from a crash to a power outage can affect the capture, maybe use one of these:

http://www.emedialive.com/Articles/R...ArticleID=8681

You then record to both hard drive and tape plus due to the filesystem limitations, it has to split the files into 2GB segments. They say it's inconvenient but 15 files isn't that bad if it saves your ass. Plus you can recover any of the broken files from the tape as a last resort.

You get standalone models that connect to any camera like the Quickstream and Firestore drives. Quickstream have a solid state model too that does HDV.

Either that or capture live to a laptop with a battery backup. The portable recorders take power from the camera battery.
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

This is one advantage that tape recording still has over digital recording. It simply can't destroy any of the information that's already been stored. If you'd split the digital recording into a new file after every couple of minutes, you would only have lost at most 2 minutes of footage.

We usually record to tape on one of our VTRs in the studio and everything is usually connected to an APC power back up, except that we are performing maintenance (rewiring everything) and both were not available that day.

The file is 23gigs, so hopefully I'll be able to salvage some of the footage from it.

Thanks for your help Marvin.
post #4 of 5
I recorded a video using my Canon IXUS and it was even playing on the camera but on transfering it isnt playing on the computer or on my camera anymore, wat do i do???? I believe it is corrupted, but i hav no idea as to wat happened
post #5 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by SandraMc View Post

I recorded a video using my Canon IXUS and it was even playing on the camera but on transfering it isnt playing on the computer or on my camera anymore, wat do i do???? I believe it is corrupted, but i hav no idea as to wat happened

What model of Canon IXUS are you using? If it records MVI movies, you won't be able to play those back on the Mac as it's a proprietary format.
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