Video Sequence - Huge Blend File Size

I’m using the video sequence editor to edit a 45-minute video of a piano concert shot from four different angles. It’s going reasonably well but as I edit, my blend file is getting bigger - a lot bigger. I don’t know if this is what I should expect, I’ve never used the sequence editor in a project of this scope, so I wanted to ask around.

My video is DV footage converted to a jpeg image sequence so that Blender seeks accurately and scrubs at a decent rate. The audio is a plain old 16bit, 48k wave file. I’m not doing anything fancy, simple cuts and fades mostly. My blend file has been steadily growing as I’ve been editing. I’m up through 70 thousand of the around 80 thousand frames, and by now my blend file is just a hair over 900MB.

My next step will probably be to break the file down into sub-files or maybe around 20 thousand frames each so that saving doesn’t take minutes. I understand wanting lots of RAM when editing to cache as much footage as possible, but what is being stored on disk that takes so much space? Is there any way around having such large file sizes? Written out as an edit decision list, I’m sure the file would be less than a MB, but as it is, it’s a hundred times that. Anybody out there with insight or workflow tips for working with long sequences other than just break it into multiple short ones? I can do that but want to make sure there’s not another better way.

Is it tracking/logging all those single frame edits? thus building a huge list?

try saving with the compress option on.

@3PointEdit, yeah, that’s what I was wondering, too.

@PapaSmurf, Thanks Roger, you’re spot on as always. Checking the compress files option decreased file size by a factor of 30. my 900MB file jumped down to 30MB. Amazing! It still takes just as much memory when loaded, but saves and loads much quicker.

To anybody else out there looking for increased performance when dealing with large sequences or other large files, some things that I found that really increased my performance were turning off undo, turning off auto-save, setting a maximum memory limit so that Blender stayed in RAM rather than swapping continuously, upping my VSE Mem Cache limit, using jpeg image sequences and wavs rather than anything with a complex codec, and also keeping my uncompressed blend file size to not too much more than half of my RAM - Blender uses a lot more memory when loading sequences than it does when it’s finally all loaded, and of course use Compress File as I learned from PapaSmurf.