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February 2014 Archives

This lesson focuses on the basic fundamentals of add a transition and a sound effect within Final Cut Pro X.


This next scheduled Final Cut Pro X and Motion courses in Orlando, FL are:

Here's a quick tip for those seasoned Final Cut Pro X editors out there.  I've noticed that it's much more efficient to select a transition point, and then double click on the transition that you want instead of attempting to drag the transition to an edit point.

select transition first.pngAlso, when it comes to find transitions and / or sound effects, there is a search function at the bottom of the media browser.

sound effects search.pngThere are over one thousand sound effects that are available on a stock Final Cut Pro X system. A good collection of some unique sounds are the 'whoosh' effects.  Other good search terms that are popular may include terms like (bullet, crash, siren, crowd, fire, airplane, etc.)

Then, you can drag the sound effect directly from the media browser to your project.

full screen.png

Learn how to create the Pleasantville Effect using Adobe Premiere.

premiere_training.pngThe 'Pleasantville' effect is a commonly used effect to call attention to a part of the video frame.  You will see this effect used quite a bit in sport highligtht reels, commercials, and wedding videos.

To start, navigate to the effects tab within the project window area, and find the change color effect.  Drag the change color effect to your clip segment within the timeline.

apply change color effect.pngNext, navigate to the effect controls tab.  The effect controls tab should be located in the upper left course of the source window area.

select color to change.pngWithin the Effect Controls window,  click on the color to change area.  Use the eye-dropper to pick a color from the program window that you would like to isolate.

pick color.pngNavigate back to the Effects Controls window, and change the Match Colors pull down menu to 'Using Chroma'. Then adjust the matching tolerance until you have isolated the color.

final result.pngThat's it!, go ahead and play your sequence.

This lesson focuses focuses on the basic fundamentals of using Multi Camera Mode within Avid Media Composer.  Understand Multi-camera mode can save you countless hours of time.

play_avid_tutorial.pngMulti-camera editing in Media Composer is easy, so check out his short sequence and I will walk you through the steps.

To start, you can see I have four clips within a bin.  Each clip represents one camera angle. 

The first step is to find a sync point for each camera. which means you need to mark an in-point for each of your cameras.

mark_sync_points.pngThen navigate to the bin menu and choose group clips. Click okay to group by the in-points.

group clips.pngThis will create a grouped clip in your bin.  The next step is to drag your grouped clip into an empty timeline.

edit_grouped_clip.pngThis will create an untitled sequence.  I recommended that you give your sequence a name.

Now navigate to the special menu and choose multi-camera mode.

Now, as I back up through the timeline, you can see all the camera angles are in sync.  So now as soon as you press the play button, you can cut between the different camera angles in real time.

multi_camera_editing.pngPlease note:  You will not see the actual edit points until you stop the play indicator.

Now, If you decide to make a change to one of the angles, park the playhead indicator over the segment you want to change within the timeline, and then hold down the alt key and click on the camera angle to switch out.

However, there's one catch.  Notice how Media Composer kept the audio from the first camera and only performed video cuts.

To fix this, navigate to the project window and click on the settings tab. Then double click on the composer settings.

Within the composer settings, under the window tab, click on the option to display two rows of data.

two_rows_data.pngIn the upper left corner of the source window, you will now see a multicam icon. In this menu you can tell Media Composer to cut your audio and video together.

second_row_data.pngYou can also switch out a specific audio or video segment by selecting a different camera angle.

So in this case, I'll choose the audio from the lockdown camera.

And remember, you'll still have access to all the standard Media Composer editing features even after you choose to leave multi-camera mode.

For example, if I made a particular camera edit at the wrong point in time, I can enter into trim mode by dragging a lasso around an edit point, and make a quick adjustment.

trim mode.pngThen click on the timecode track  bar to enter back into Multicamera mode.

It's that easy! Don’t forget, GeniusDV also offers classroom and flat rate onsite Avid Media Composer training.

This lesson focuses on how to use the splice in function within Avid Media Composer. 

play_avid_tutorial.pngThis lesson also demonstrates how to view the audio waveform for a clip that is in the source window.


Here are the next scheduled hands-on Avid Media Composer training courses at GeniusDV.

Course Course Dates Location
5 Day Avid Media Composer Class Mar 24-28 Orlando, FL
On-Site Media Composer Training Call for availablity Nationwide

The splice-in function within Avid Media Composer makes it easy to insert content between two clip segments in a sequence.

To splice a clip between two clip segments, first place this position indicator at the point you would like to insert the clip.

Now, you may want to hold down the command key while dragging the position indicator so it snaps to the edit point.

Okay so now, let me find an area of the barking dog to insert between Dad and Billy's clip segments.

Now since this is a short lesson, let me add an important side note.

Since the dog is being given verbal instructions to bark, it going to be difficult to find a clean area to mark.

Navigate to the bottom left corner of the timeline window, and click on the Toggle Source / Record Button.

This will allow you to see a timeline of your content within the source window.

Notice that the position indicator is now green.

To turn on the audio waveforms, navigate to the fast menu and choose audio-data waveform.

Okay, this makes it easy to pick a clean area by looking at the audio waveform for the source clip.

This time, I'll use the keyboard shortcuts I for in, and O for out to mark the area.

You can also press the 6 key on your keyboard which will play from in to out to make sure you've marked the correct area.

Then make sure you click back onto the toggle source / record button to return to your sequence.

So, now I can press the yellow splice-in button, and it will splice this area between Dad and Billy.

Okay, fantastic.... Let's check it out.

Okay, now you have the basics of the splice-in function.

And don’t forget, GeniusDV also offers classroom or onsite Final Cut Pro X training.

Avid Media Composer version 7.X can now reference 4K media.  You can use a function called frame flex to move around within a 4K video frame. 

Composer Window.pngCheck out this short Avid training tutorial on how to do this.


In Avid Media Composer version 7, you can now reference media that exceeds HD resolution.  This means you can re-frame and move around in your video image to a certain extent without losing quality.

This functionality is similar to the old Avid Pan and Zoom effect, except that you can now point to a video file instead of just a still image.

To make this work, the key is to have media that exceeds the resolution of your project's video format.  You can view your project's format by clicking on the format tab within the project window.

format tab.pngSo ,in this example, I'm working within a 1920 x 1080 project.

To start, navigate to the File menu and choose AMA link.

ama_link.pngFind a high resolution picture or high resolution video file on your hard drive, which in this case is a 4K movie file.  Then press the open button.

Okay, so now edit the 4K high resolution video clip to an empty sequence.  Then move the playhead to the first frame of the clip segment

You should see a green dot within the clip segment in the timeline.

Green Motion Adapter.pngThis means the native video resolution of the file that you are pointing to does not match the project's resolution.

Navigate to the upper left corner of the timeline window and press the effect mode button.  This will launch the effect editor window.

Effect Mode Button.pngIn the lower right corner of the effect editor window click on the keyframe graphs button.

Keyframe Graph Button.pngThen click on the pink keyframe button choose add to all parameters.

Add to all Parameters.pngIn doing so, this will make keyframing easier when it comes to moving around within the video frame.

To preview the area that you will be seeing within the 4K video file, click on the box that says match project raster.

Match Format Raster.png
In doing so, you should see a smaller box appear within the right side of the composer window.  This box represents the area that fits within your project settings. In this case, it's the standard HD size of 1920 by 1080.

format raster.pngNow, as you move the box around, you can see the area it represents on the left side of the composer window.

Also, notice how Avid Media Composer automatically creates a pink keyframe within the right side of the Composer window based on the position of the wireframe box. This indicates your starting point.

keyframe.pngWithin the right side of the composer window, move the position indicator to the last frame of the clip segment. 

Then place and/or scale the wireframe box.  This will represent what you will see at the end of the clip segment.

Then go ahead and close the effect editor window.

Now move back to the right side of the composer window, and back up to the first frame and press play.  Okay fantastic, now you have the basics of re-framing 4K media within Avid Media Composer.

For other great tips like this or to enroll in a certified Avid Media Composer training course, visit GeniusDV.com

This lessons focuses on working with bins within Avid Media Composer.  In particular, if you are not familiar with using bin window tabs, this video will be worth watching.

play_avid_tutorial.pngIf you are running Avid Media Composer on a single monitor, or on a laptop, you may find it useful that you can automatically open all your bins within one window. 

open all bins in one tab.pngThis functionality replaces the old 'super bin' option within older versions of Media Composer.

It’s easy to create a video texture inside of 3D text within Adobe After Effects CC.

AE interface.pngYou can play the short video tutorial below, our read through this text based tutorial to accomplish the task.


To start, create a composition from a video file.   In this example, I’ve got this pool of water that I want to use as a texture. Drag the video file from the project window area directly into an empty composition.

drag to composition window.pngNow that you have the video file inside the composition area, right click on it, and choose environment layer.

convert to environment.png

After converting the layer into an environment layer, the image will look like you've zoomed into it.   This is because After Effects wraps the video frame around the environment.

The best way to think of this, is to imagine a video camera inside the middle of a sphere.

What the camera sees is the environment.

If you’re using relatively generic textures like water, fire, or clouds, in general you won’t have to worry much about the 3D camera location.

Next, click on the type tool within the toolbar area.

Click in the composition window and type some text.

Type text.pngRight click on the text, and choose 3D layer from the contextual menu.

3D Text Layer.pngThen navigate back to the toolbar menu and click on the rotation tool.

rotate tool.png

 Navigate to the timeline area, and twirl down the disclosure triangle for text layer. Adjust the extrusion Depth to a value of around 40.

extrude depth.pngThis will add some 3D depth to your text . Now, as an optional step at this point, the 3D text won’t look very good until you add a light.

 To do that, navigate to the Layer menu and choose light. Then press the okay button.

 Okay so now, to make it look like the water it inside the text object, we need to have our text layer reflect back the environment.

 To do this, twirl down the disclosure triangle for the Material options.

reflection intensity.pngAdjust the reflection intensity to 100%. So, now the text is reflecting back the environment inside the characters.

 Now, if you choose you can hide the environment from the background, by twirling down the disclosure triangle for the environment layer.

 At the bottom, look for the parameter that says ‘appears in reflections’.

reflections only.pngChange the value from ‘on’ to ‘only’.

This will remove the environment from the background, but it will still allow it to be reflected back inside the text characters.

rotate 3d text.pngAs an added effect you can now rotate and/or animate your text in 3D space.

For other great tips like this, or to enroll in an Adobe Effects course, visit GeniusDV.com

In case you missed it, there is a new version of Final Cut Pro X.

One of the best features, is the way Final Cut Pro 10.1 now manages media.  Watch the short video below for a quick demonstration.

fcpx_training.pngThis video is only for those who are running Final Cut Pro 10.1 or higher. There are a couple of things to keep in mind if you plan in upgrading to Final Cut Pro 10.1

  • The Upgrade is Free, and it will be available in the Apple Store as an update if you have OS X 10.9  (Mavericks) installed.
  • FCP X 10.1 may be incompatible with older Mac's based on the video card
  • Updating Projects into FCP X 10.1 will not be compatible with FCP X 10.09
  • Final Cut Pro 10.1 requires a minimum of 4GB of ram to run correctly.

There are many new great features in this update, but I'll simplify things by listing the most important changes.

  • Events and Projects are now wrapped within a single file called a library, which makes it easy to archive and move your work.
  • Resolution independent projects are now supported.
  • Ability to copy/move groups of audio/video keyframes
  • Improvements to multicam editing - Audio can components can now be detached and edited within a multicam segment.
  • New and Improved slow motion (retime) options

New Self Contained Library for Managing Events/Projects

In versions of of Final Cut Pro X prior to 10.1, there was always a Final Cut Events, and Final Cut Pro Projects folder on each hard drive.

old events-projects.png

These folders are now embedded into a single Library Folder.  Furthermore, the library folder can be now placed outside of the root level of the hard-drive.

The good news is, the original directory structure that you may be used to is retained inside the Library file.  If you're curious, you can right click on the Library File to reveal the original Final Cut Pro Events and Project Folders.


By revealing the package contents, you will now see the original directory structure that you've been used to.

Inside Package Contents.png

* Please note:  You should always manage the media inside the library within Final Cut Pro X directly.  It's not recommended to manage media directly within the MAC OS X operating system level.

Since the new library file contains both Final Cut Pro Events and Final Cut Pro Projects, the projects library within earlier versions of Final Cut Pro X has been eliminated.

old project library.png

Final Cut Pro X projects now show up directly within the Final Cut Pro Library window.


When importing media, as long as you choose to copy media into a library, you will always have a self contained file that contains all of your media and your projects.  This makes it incredibly easy to archive, move or copy your media.

copy files into Library.png

It's important to note, that if you are referencing media that has been left in its original place, you will want to consolidate your library or event.

Consolidate Event.png

By consolidating an event, this will ensure that you have a complete self-contained copy of all your media within one library file.

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This page is an archive of entries from February 2014 listed from newest to oldest.

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