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OMF file limitations

Discussion in 'Recording' started by DonnyThompson, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    I haven't exported a project to OMF in quite sometime, and was just now attempting to do so in Sonar so that a pal of mine, who works with a Mac ( Logic, to be precise) can open it.

    The project is in two parts, a live recording of two sets, each set was tracked at 44/24, 6 tracks, 55 min in length.

    Yet, I was being given an error message each time the process got to about 80%

    It was then that I did some research and found out that with very few exceptions, most production platforms have a 2 gig limit on the file size for either exporting or importing OMF files.

    At risk of belaboring the obvious, I thought I'd post what I found here on the forum in case I wasn't the ONLY person who didn't know this.

    In other news, Christmas falls on the 25th of December, Barrack Obama is President of the U.S.A., there is no Easter Bunny and I'm an idiot. :tongue:

  2. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    LOL... apparently I was the only one duh
  3. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    Donny I thought everybody knew mackintosh file size limitations were 2 GB? I'm not even a Macintosh user and I knew that and have since the beginning of time. This is another reason why I actually prefer the NTFS file format in Windows. That's reliable up to 4 GB. And beyond. And that Alesis HD 24 native FST formatted discs, offer an unlimited size. But you can get into trouble with it as it will not import when the files get super huge, even in Windows with NTFS. And that's when you end up doing an analog mix down LOL. Because you're not going to get a contiguous running 4 hour show off those FST hard drives, any other way.

    Stick that in your analog console and smoke it. While you can stick it in your digital desk via optical also. Just stick it.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
  4. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Has to be Windows. Sonar doesn't run on OSX. I'd split the file anyway out of paranoia.
  5. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    hueseph... you wouldn't be splitting any file if you were rolling live. I mean back in the day when you were recording live to 2 inch 24 track, you'd need 2, 2 inch, 24 track machines not just for safety backup but to be able to stagger the tape packs for constantly rolling dual redundant backup and still be able to change a reel of tape without losing anything. And you ought to stop a computer in the middle of recording? I don't think so LOL. I mean... I'm a risk taker but that started me sweating and girls are only supposed to perspire, as we aspire up the pyre. From the bottom of the top to the top of the heap. Or something like that? I was trying to sound inspirational... it didn't work. Maybe I need a different microphone?

    A bullhorn would be good.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
  6. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    I'm not talking about during recording. I'm talking about before exporting. Select sections of the session and export selection to OMF.
  7. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    I thought about splitting the file into more manageable and accepted size, but I wasn't crazy about cutting into a file of a live performance, so in the end, I simply exported each track as both a Wave and as AIFF file(s).

    I ended up with 7 tracks total: 1 for the lead vocal, 2 for the direct outs of the Line 6 Pod he was using as a guitar processor, 1 stereo track for the X-Y array I had in the room, and dual mono tracks for each of the X-Y mics.

    The client is very happy, and the files in both formats are now on their way to another engineer at a label in NYC for mixing and mastering.

    My work here is done. :)

    Thanks to all here for their input.

  8. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    Donny I'm confused? Are any single audio track larger than 2 GB in size? I mean that's what we were talking about here wasn't it? Not about the whole session being larger than 2 GB? Of course the session is larger than 2 GB. But if you have a single stereo track at 96 kHz 32-bit float of a three-hour performance that will top out at over 2 GB for that single stereo file. But a mono track would be fine. Which is I guess what you're talking about?

    I only posted this response to try and clarify this issue for others. Just so you know.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
  9. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    There were no individual audio track/file sizes over 2 gig, Remy.

    The project itself - split into two separate Sonar project files because I wasn't nuts about tracking 3 hours of audio in one project file time line - is around 6 gig.

    The first set is about 3.3 gig and the second set is around 3 gig.

    Yes, I could have split the first half of the show up into multiple and manageable file sizes to fit into an OMF, say for example, "first set / part 1 OMF", first set / part 2 OMF"...and that's what I decided I was going to do after I realized that which was so very obvious to everyone else in the world but me...LOL...that OMF has a limitation of 2 gig, (also...water freezes at 32 degrees, gasoline is combustible and New Year's Day is January 1st). LOL

    And, I did give the client the choice of providing these smaller multiple OMF files, but in the end, the client's preference was that I simply export waves of the individual tracks for him and the other engineer to work with.

    When all was said and done, I don't believe one process takes any longer the other to render anyway, so it's kind of a "six in one hand / half a dozen in the other" situation.

    My intention for writing the original post was more of a "laughing at/kicking myself in the butt" thing, because I thought it was humorous that an old cooker like myself didn't know what everyone else apparently did... figuring that maybe I could help someone else who also didn't know.... LOL... it just turned out that I was, in fact, the only one who didn't know. ;)

    - Donny - "belaboring the obvious" - Thompson :tongue:

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