Import File Issue

I am using Hitfilm 4 Express to create instructional videos for surgeons in training. I am editing video that is exported from the camera on a da Vinci robot (1920x1080, 29.97 fps, Codec: AVC/H.264, Audio: AAC although the mic was off, so no audio, Container: MPEG-4, duration 00:11:16, size 1GB). I have several different files that are made from the exact same machine, are the same codec/container, are the same size, and roughly the same length. 75% of them import just fine with no issue. The other 25%, when I import them I get the "thinking" wheel animation for several seconds and then the icon of the page with the "! triangle". No error box or anything, but the video has no length and no frames. Any assistance would be much appreciated. Thank you.



  • edited October 2017
  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    A couple of thoughts.

    Quick Google searches reveal that Da Vinci Resolve and Adobe Premiere both have issues importing video from that robot. I wasn't able to get details of the exact codec.

    I'm going to guess that the files are variable frame rate. Hitfilm 4 doesn't like VFR footage, and you might need to transcode your footage to a constant framerate before import into Hitfilm.

    This video discusses how video encoding works, what VFR is, why it's a problem, how to identify VFR footage and several free methods to transcode. Hopefully the solution is there.

    Consider upgrading to Hitfilm Express 2017. 2017 performs better with VFR footage and has many improvements over 4. It's free and any add ons you have would migrate forward. Just use the same email account you used for 4.

  • I tried looking at a couple of sample videos from that robot with MediaInfo. There's no B Frames (like NormanAVC) but the GOP length is 60 frames which seems high to me. Usually I see a GOP length in the low to mid 30's. I would try running a problem clip through Handbrake using @NormanPCN 's settings and see how it works. His thread is here:


  • If you could give us a full text MediaInfo report on one, or more, of the files that fail to import.

    I'll assume that the files that fail in Hitfilm play properly, in full, in a video player. I ask this to rule out corruption.

    The files, if like samples available examples online, are baseline profile and with a long GOP like Aladdin4d said. I would not think the long GOP would be an import problem but it could cause the performance issues in certain circumstances (like transitions) given how Hitfilm does some things. 

    But you never know what might cause an issue. I once experimented with All-I AVC MP4 files and ran into some intermittent Hitfilm crashes and/or thumbnail corruption (in V4). This with files I created in ffmpeg but also Canon DSLR All-I files (5Dm3). Support was able to reproduce this issue but it was very intermittent for them so the priority to look into it was going to be low. I don't know if anything ever came of that report. I just moved onto I/P encodes.

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