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April 2008 Archives

When you pop in a Hollywood DVD, and the opening segment is unable to be paused or fast forwarded, it is because the playback controls are disabled. To do this in DVD Studio Pro it is very simple. Either a Track, Menu, Story, or a Slideshow can have this functionality.


motion_playback_controls_disabled.gifFor a menu, you need to be in the Advanced tab within the Menu Inspector. Then click the Disable All button. This will cause the movie playing in the menu to be unaffected by any button on the remote control. The same thing can be accomplished in a Track, or Story by clicking the Disable All button in the User Operations tab in the Inspector. To make a Slideshow forced, you will need to be in the Advanced tab in the Inspector, and change all the Remote Control options to not set. After the movie you do not want the viewer to have control over plays, you will want to have it end jump. Usually when it has been a first play, the end jump will be to the main menu.



I just received my copy of Designer Sound FX and it is amazing! This is an amazing collection of intense sound effects put out by our friends at videocopilot.net. This collection includes, hits, swishes, Orchestra elements, ambient tones, drum build ups and many music beds. The great thing is they have also included five video tutorials to help you understand how to use this collection to it's full capacity! 

This collection includes:

500 Sound FX & Audio Elements
Royalty Free Sound FX for all your productions
After Effects Project File for the Promo
Free Tutorials and Extras!
2-DVD Set jammed full of extras!

Don't miss out on this great set for only $99.00 and get on your way to adding great sound to your video!

web_link3.gifGiving the viewer the ability to connect to your website from a DVD is a powerful feature of DVD Studio Pro. There are a couple things to keep in mind when using this feature, to keep it from being a source of aggravation to the viewer instead of a source of convenience. 

To do a web link you will use a menu to actually launch the viewers internet browser. To do this you need to go to the Advanced tab within the Inspector, and enter the web address into the URL: window, making sure that you enter http:// before the actual address. The Name: window is there for your reference, it is not necessary to enter anything into it.. After entering the web address, you will need to check the box next to "DVD@ccess". This will cause the viewers browser to go to the web address you entered when this menu is selected. Typically the address will be within a button on another menu, and when that button is selected, the web link menu will open, launching the viewers internet browser. When the browser launches, and the targeted website is accessed, the menu that launched the browser has served it's purpose. The browser will have appeared overtop of the web link menu at this time, and since the web link menu has served it's purpose, it can now timeout, and return to the previous menu. In most instances when the weblink works properly the viewer never sees the content of the weblink menu, because it times out before the viewer returns to the DVD player.

avid alpha import.gif
Importing a picture or a Quick Time into your Avid editing system requires that you change some of the import settings. When you import alpha from an Avid QuickTime codec, select Alpha > Use Existing in the Import Settings dialog box. When alpha is imported from a non-Avid QuickTime codec, select Alpha > Invert Existing. This is because the Avid QuickTime codec inverts the alpha during the movie’s creation, saving time on import into your editing applications while not significantly adding to the creation time in a third-party program. This step will save you time and will also preserve the intended alpha setting. 
The Motion File Browser has a function that collapses image sequences. This can create the illusion that you are missing still images from a folder. Since still images from a digital camera are imported with a numerical sequence , Motion views these groups of pictures as an image sequence. At the very bottom of the File Browser there is a button that toggles the way Motion will display image sequences. This button will toggle between a collapsed image sequence and showing all images. This is certainly a great feature when dealing with an actual image sequence, but when the image sequence is actually a group of stills with sequential names, it can be confusing if you don't realize the sequence is collapsed. This is especially confusing if there are a number of pictures deleted from the original import, because for every break in the sequence Motion will start a new sequence. For example if you import 50 photos and delete every tenth photo, Motion will display five images in the File Browser in collapsed mode.


If you are an Avid Xpress user and you plan on upgrading to Media Composer you'll find a new feature called TimeWarp.  The TimeWarp feature in Avid Xpress was limited in terms of its functionality.


The TimeWarp feature allows you to play video as variable speeds within the same clip.  Here is a short tutorial on how to use it.

For those of you who have not yet upgraded to Media Composer, you can create something similar by using the traditional motion effect within Avid Xpress to create a speed ramp.

Finally a way to output realtimeHD with your Avid editing system! The new Mojo DX is the latest edition to the Avid editing hardware accelerator! Make sure you check out the full specifications and make this latest release supports Leopard and Windows Vista! f you are editing with HD footage or plan on it in the very near future then this is the best way to get you Avid system into the future! Here is a list of the all the features included in the Composer MOJO DX. 
  • New I/O hardware for SD and HD, with SD/HD SDI I/O and HDMI monitoring
  • Support for Mac OSX Leopard and Windows Vista
  • Additional HD codec support, such as Sony XDCAM-EX (using the Sony Clip Browser software), Panasonic AVC-I, JVC 23.976p & 25p HDV
  • Real-time playback of non-full-raster HD codecs through video output
  • Improved timeline responsiveness
  • Improved real-time effect performance with optimized CPU/GPU acceleration
  • Improved render performance with optimized multi-threading on multi-core CPU's
  • MetaFuze tool, for quickly merging single-frame files (such as DPX and TIF) from film scanning or CGI systems into a single media clip (Windows only)
  • Real-time multi-window timecode burn-in tool
  • SubCap subtitling tool

red.gifAs has been the case at the last couple NAB shows, one of the most popular destinations of the show floor was the Red Camera booth. More accurate would be the Red Camera tent With twice the resolution as most HD cameras, at half the cost it is not hard to see why everyone wants to find out more about the Red Camera. Creating anticipation and curiosity that reminds me of Walt Disney's promotion of Disneyland in the early 50's. I over heard may attendees discussing the benefits of implementing the Red Camera into there productions. . .  I know I am!

As of right now the best supported editing platform for the Red Camera is Final Cut Pro. Using integration with Red Camera software, Final Cut Pro is the way to edit the Red Camera footage. Final Cut Pro can compress the 4K image to 2K, but even @ half resolution, it is higher than Hi Def. Apple Color will bring the 4K images in without compressing them allowing you to work with them at full resolution.

Red Camera had a number of it's products on display, but many will not be available until early 2009. To learn more about what Red Camera is doing check them out at red.com. Be sure you view the myth buster video.

Have you ever wondered how much space is required for DV, HDV or HD media?  This can be a tricky question, because DV and HD is based on a fixed compression scheme and HDV is based on variable MPEG compression.

Keep in mind that HDV offers approximately 3 times better quality that DV.

DV uses 3.5 MB/sec

HDV uses 3.3 MB/sec

DVCPro HD (1080i 60) uses 13.9 MB/sec

So how is it possible that HDV uses less space than DV?  Well, this isn't always true, because it depends on the footage you are compressing.  HDV uses MPEG compression which is a variable compression format.  In general HDV takes up a smaller footprint than DV.  I find this to be quite amazing.  There are some drawbacks in that HDV requires a lot more processor power and longer render times than standard DV. 

file_size_for_hd.gifRemember, this file size of HDV depends on the complexity of the footage. 




If you plan on working with full HD, notice the file size is roughly 4 times the size of DV or HDV.  That's a lot of bandwidth.  If you plan on working in full HD, make sure you have a high-speed drive array with a lot of storage.

There are certain things about Avid Xpress or Media Composer that may drive you nuts.  One of those things is Media Composer does not allow you to add filler at an end of a sequence.  Wouldn't it be nice if you could tell Media Composer to always display 30 seconds of filler, even if you are zoomed all the way out?  This would give you an idea of how much additional content you need to fill.

Well, here is a fantastic trick on how to configure your timeline when you are doing spot work so you are always dealing with a fixed timeline. 


If you were waiting for the new JVC cameras to come down in price then the wait is over. Not only can you now get the GY-HD200U for $5,995 but it now includes the Anton-Bauer Trimpac battery/charger system at no additional cost. If you have a limited budget then the Gy-HD110U might be the right choice for you. It now has a new retail price of only $4995 and includes and extra long life JVC battery at no extra charge. The HD200U is truly the best value of the two choices. Not only do you add 60p recording but he Anton-Bauer package it worth the additional cost. If you decide to go with the GY-HD200U you will also get these additional features:
  • 14-bit A/D(greatly improves HSL)
  • High Speed Encoder for 50 and 60p recording, great for true slow motion
  • Pro Anton/Bauer batter mount, much better balance
  • Cross converter outputs 1080i live
  • Image inversion for prime lenses
  • 6-pin remote control connector
  • 2 year parts warranty
  Both cameras are a perfect match for editing with Final Cut Pro or Avid Media Composer / Xpress Pro. The wait is over for both of these highly proven cameras and now is the time to take advantage of the new pricing!  

Final Cut Pro allows you to manipulate the rate at which you adjust specific functions with modifier keys. Two good examples of this are using the Option key when using the scroll wheel of the mouse, or when using the scroll whell to adjust sliders in the Motion tab.

When you hold down the option key while using the scroll wheel of the mouse will cause the rate of change to go from 1X for every scroll wheel click to 10X. This is helpful when navigating across a timeline. In the Motion tab of the viewer, if you place the cursor over top of a slider, and scroll the scroll wheel, the rate of change will be 1X for every click of the scroll wheel. The rate of change will increase to 10X when you hold down the Option key.

On the topic of the sliders in the Motion tab, if you hold down the Command (Apple) key while dragging, it will slow the rate of change down considerably. If you don't have a scroll wheel, this is an option for you.


Did you know it's possible to add clip comments directly to clips within the Avid Timeline?  This is important for a few reasons.

comments_within_avid_clip.gif#1 The comments will stay embedded within the clip, so if you move the clip, the comments will stay with it.

#2 If you edit a title directly from the timeline, the clip name doesn't change.  You can add a clip comment to reflect the real-name of the title template, instead of having to deal with a generic name.



To add comments to clips within Avid Xpress or Avid Media Composer follow these steps:


Avid Media Composer on Leopard.gif

UPDATE: After this article was written, Media Composer 2.8.3 will no longer allow you to install the software on Leopard.  This means you'll need to download Media Composer 2.8.1 or 2.8.0 in order for the installer to work.

You have heard the rumors and read the blogs that Avid Media Composer will not work on the awesome Mac Leopard OS.

Well, we here at GeniusDV have found otherwise. There are a few quirks to installing Media Composer and a quick trick that allows the task bar to remain open. First and foremost you need to make sure that you download the latest version of Leopard OS but do not allow the latest version of Quicktime to be installed. There is no uninstall for Quicktime on Mac and you will be in big trouble with the Avid software if you do not have the correct version.

As you are installing Media Composer you will find that there are several error messages that you will encounter that make it appear your software is not being installed properly. Just make sure that every error message that you come across you accept them or click ok. The installation will continue and you will eventually be directed to the pace website to install the correct plugin to continue your install. Once you have gone through these steps you will have one more corrections to make once you launch your software.
Avid Full Screen Playback.gif
Once the software is up and running you will find that your task bar is on top is hidden until you hover over it. This is very aggravating because it will switch between the OS task bar and the Avid task bar. To fix this you need to navigate to Toolset in the task bar and select Fullscreen Playback. You only need to do this once and every time you launch Media Composer after that you will not have the issue again. So far I have not found once glitch in the software running on Leopard, but stay tuned for any updated information just in case.
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This page is an archive of entries from April 2008 listed from newest to oldest.

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