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September 2005 Archives

I have noticed a number of discussion forum posts made by FCP users who were wondering if FCP had any motion tracking funtionality that they had just overlooked. Well, even though Final Cut Pro does not have its own motion tracking capabilities, such as an After Effects or other third party wares, there are ways to simulate some of the benefits of motion tracking within Final Cut Pro.


The blurring of an individual's face, for whom you don't have consent, is one of the benifits of having motion tracking capabilities. This Final Cut Pro tutorial will demonstrate how you can blur out an idividual's face in a crowd without using any third-party software or keyframes.

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If you have ever wanted to find out where your footage is at, either in a particular folder or which hard drive does it live on, it has never been very obvious in Adobe After Effects. To locate footage in your project all you need to do is right-click (PC) the footage in your project window and use the reveal command. This will show where the footage lives. I have found this to be very important if you have multiple hard drives and you would like to consolidate all of the footage on to one hard-drive. Make sure you sign up for one of our few remaining seats in the next After Effects 5-Day class coming October 17-21.


Have you ever wanted to make you text dance to you music. Maybe you have wanted a graphic to pulse to the beat! No problem with After Effects. This is called Convert Audio Keyframes. Here is a quick rundown of how to convert your audio to match your needs.
First highlight the track of music you want to keyframe and go up to the animation tool on the toolbar. Now navigate to Keyframe Assistant and choose Convert Audio to Keyframes. You will notice now that you have a new track at the top of your composition that says Audio. This is where you will find all of your keyframes that you can now parent to scale, opacity or whatever you feel like making fluctuate with your keyframes.

Now go out there and make your graphics dance!

GeniusDV is doing a live chat on MVWIRE.COM John Lynn of Genius DV - geniusdv.com - is this weeks guest. This will be a great opportunity to learn and discuss any questions you might have about Final Cut Pro!


The live chat starts at 9:00 pm EST this Thursday 09-28-05. Go to the MVWIRE.COM forum and join the live dicussion.


Assigning a color to you clips is a very useful tool. I have found this to be especially helpful when there is a clip in my timeline that I have maybe cut into two or more pieces. If you want to move this clip in your timeline and keep all of the pieces together if they are the same color it makes it very easy to identify. This is only one reason to color you clips another might be you want to keep certain clips together by there color, for example: all of your outdoor midday clips you want one color and all of the evening shot another. Here is a how to color you clips:

1.Make sure you are in text view in your bin.

2.Click on the fast menu in the lower left corner and click on headings.

3.Under headings you will see color as a heading option, click color and then OK and the bottom.

4.Now you will have a color heading in you text view that you can modify by hovering in that column and clicking once and opening the color dialogue box.

5.You can choose the few preset colors or any color from the color palette by choosing pick at the bottom.

Don’t forget to save this color text view so you can access it form any project and you thought you left the Crayolas behind in elementary school!

Just recently, in the GeniusDV discussion forum, a producer asked if it would be problematic if he took a project that had been started in Adobe Premiere and transferred it over to be finished in Final Cut Pro. I thought that the explanation that GeniusDV instructor John Lynn gave him would make for a very useful article. Check it out below!


The files will need to be wrapped in QuickTime to work with Final Cut Pro.
What codec is being used with Premiere Pro? That same codec must be
available on your Final Cut Pro system.

Otherwise, you need need to do an additional conversion. Final Cut Pro
requires the DV-NTSC DVCPRO codec for files to play through the firewire

Transferring files from PC to MAC should be fairly easy. Just make sure any
drives you are using are formatted as FAT 32 so they will mount on both PC
and MAC.

I previously had some files that were recorded in Premiere 6.5 and they
opened up in Final Cut Pro perfectly fine. However, before I was able to
output the files back to tape, I had to convert them to the DV - NTSC DVCPRO
codec. This can take awhile.

If you have a lot of footage, it might take a long time to perform a


Check out the GeniusDV Discussion Community!

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Avid is always up for the challenge to meet the high demands of movies and broadcast television editors. The new hot show Boston Legal placed high demands on its lead editor Philip Neel. Neel, a veteran television editor (Ally McBeal, Sisters), is challenged by taking each hour episode and packing it with seriousness and humor all with faced paced action and camera work. Neel and his editors extensively uses Media Composers and Express Pro:

Having the Avid Express Pro really helps ensure that everyone keeps working and that we have much less downtime. It gives us a lot of flexibility.

-Anne Uemura, Associate Producer, Boston Legal

Get the full scoop about editing this exciting new show and do not forget to get your seat in one of our up and coming classes!

As a Final Cut Pro Editor, there are some steps you can take to ensure that when you create an EDL, you are getting the best results possible. The key is Keep is to keep it simple.


- Avoid filters for audio and video.

- Refrain from using non-SMPTE standard transitions.

- Avoid nested sequences.

- Avoid keyframes and motion parameters.

- Its safe to use video in tracks V1 and V2. Avoid using anything beyond V2.

Do you have Final Cut Pro questions? Take advantage of this great discussion forum.


Now that we have the ability to edit in either High Definition or Standard Definition we now have more settings to choose before we capture. The most important setting is the Video Resolution Setting. The great thing about Avid Express Pro is that you can combine SD and HD in the same timeline as long as the frame-rate is the same. The first thing you need to do is determine the format that you are going to capture. You then need to decide if you are going to capture in OMF or MXF format. The formats are wrappers for your media files, your choice will not affect quality but you need to be aware of the programs you may need to open these files in. A good rule of thumb is OMF for all of your SD and MXF for HD. To switch between these formats you need to go to your settings tab in the project window and double-click media creation. Now select the media type tab and this is where you can choose your format. This is just an intro to what your different types of formats and what they are about. Sign up for one of our Avid Express Pro combos to become an expert in Avid Express Pro.

Knowing how to properly patch your source controls to the proper destination tracks in Final Cut Pro is essential to the editing process . Just think of it like an old time operating service where you would call the operator and she would physically patch your call through to the desired destination. Well, in Final Cut Pro you can strtegically traget tracks in which to lay down source material.


When you load a clip into the viewer if you look to the left of the timeline there will be a visual representation of the sources related to that clip that will show as either V1, meaning the clip contains video, and an A1 or A2 representing 2 channels of audio. For example, If there is no audio associated with the clip that you have loaded into the viewer, you would only see a video source representation, V1. Only an audio representaion would appear, A1 A2, if the clip only contained audio.

If you have a clip loaded into the viewer that contains both video and audio, but you only wish to lay down the video source into the timeline, click on the V1 and V2 destination controls to ulink the audio source controls from their destination controls. Now, when you position your playhead in the area you wish to lay down your edit and perform either an insert or overwrite edit, you will only be laying down the video source into the timeline.

Discover some unique Final Cut Studio training opportunities.

Many of the questions being raised by beginner Final Cut Pro Users in discussion forums, referring to Anamorphic and Non-Anamorphic video, arise from the fact that they don't have a clear understanding of some of the big terms that are being thrown around today. Words like: Non-Anamorphic (Letterboxed), Anamorphic, and possibly just as equally as important, they do not know how to distinguish between them.


Before you make that DVD you're thinking about, Check out this visual representation of Anamorphic and Non-Anamorphic video being played back on various televisions that are 4:3 and 16:9. It will definitely give you clarity as to the appearance you are looking for.

We've all walked into Best Buy and seen an Anamorphic image being improperly played back on a 4:3 screen, not a good way to sell tv sets. Check it out the tutorial Anamorphic VS. Non-Anamorphic DVD.


Avid has just released the latest version of Express Pro HD. The latest update fixes many minor issues but mainly focuses on Panasonic P2 changes. These changes include: better P2 card reading support, most 3rd party audio cards are now supported, updating user profile settings now offers a message box to tell you what has been updated, and many errors have been addressed. To read everything that has been updated check out this Avid read-me for a detailed list. Now go out and get updated.

Earlier we talked about the importance of knowing the many ways to manipulate an edit point and we then went into detail about the specifics of performing a ripple edit. Today we will look at how to perform a ripple edit on multiple edit points simultaneously.

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1 After choosing the edit selection tool, drag a box around the multiple edit points you wish to manipulate.

2 Select the ripple tool, and drag one of the edit points. You can also type in a numerical value after the ripple tool has been chosen and your edit points have been selected just like in the previous lesson.


With the introduction of such economical, yet cutting edge camera technology that is available to the young Avid and Final Cut Pro User, never before has there been so many choices of workflow that you have to consider before taking that first shot. Are you shooting in 24pa, squeezed 16:9, true 16:9, letterbox, HD, HDV, and possibly the question that supercedes all the others is, " who is your target audience?" Well, lets take a look at that particular question.

Without getting into the logistics behind tranfering DV to film, let's say that your project will mainly be seen by people while in their homes, sitting in front of their television sets. Given, some are biting the bullet and investing in 16:9 sets or televisions that can switch between anamorphic and standard, there are still many who tune into ER on Thursday nights with a 1985 19" Sylvania. The point I'm trying to make is that with the wide array of hardware to capture and review footage in circulation, you may have questions?

Here is a conversation between industry professional discussing shooting 4:3 vs 16:9 via the Panasonic DVX-100a. This is good stuff!

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Storyboard editing is a real effective way to quickly add clips in order to your timeline. I found this to be very useful in the last show I put together. I had never tried this form of editing before and I was pleasantly surprised at how well it works under the right circumstances. If you have all the clips you need and they follow some form of order than storyboard editing might be for you. Here is a quick rundown on how to Storyboard edit. First enter the Frame View in your bin (not storyboard view). Now mark in and outs for the each clip in the bin, by loading them into the source monitor. Once you have all the clips marked then arrange them from left to right in the order you would like them to be in your timeline. Avid will read your order as left to right and top to bottom. Drag a lasso around all of your clips to highlight them all. Now drag one of the clips into your timeline and “presto� you now have a sequence that is ready to edit.


The last few Photoshop Tips have all been about shortcuts. Well, you probably wish you could make your own shortcuts for your favorite functions. You can and here’s how. Go under the edit menu and choose
Keyboard Shortcuts. In the Shortcuts For pop-up menu choose Application Menus. Now you can select the function you would like to make shortcut for and highlight that function. Now just enter the keys you would like to use to bring up that function and you are done. You now have the power to create your own shortcuts!

I hope you have been able to use these Photoshop shortcuts tips to make your workflow faster and more enjoyable! Check in everyday for more Avid, FCP, After Effects or Photoshop Tips!

When I was a producer for an outdoor sports show, the most common, reocurring problem we had in post was derived from the fact that 80 percent of the time, we had little or no control over lighting conditions when shooting interviews guerrilla style in the field. The fact that we conducted most of our interviews non-linearly, resulted in much of our "seamless" footage not appearing uniform.


Well, the same can hold true for a shoot with multiple cameras. Unless under very controlled conditions, not everyone will pull the same color balance or assess their lighting conditions in the same manner. The Match Hue color correction feature in Final Cut Pro 5 can help you bring some uniformity to those shots that appeary choppy, but should be seamless.

Check out this tutorial on how to use the Match Hue feature and when not to use it!

If you are new to the editing scene, its extremely important to understand all of the output options of Final Cut Pro. After all of the hard work you've put forward to complete the project, don't you want everyone to enjoy what you have created?


Exporting Your Sequence To A Qucktime Movie

- After you have opened your sequence into the timeline, Select File > Export > QuickTime Movie.

- Enter the name of your project into the Save dialog box and choose a location. Make sure that the Make Movie Self Contained option is not selected and select DVD Studio Pro Markers in the Markers pop up menu, if you need to include DVD chapter markers in your export.

- Select Save.

Learn how to print your HDV footage to tape!


Being able to use shortcuts is the best way to speed up your workflow. Whenever you make a shape or want to fill something with color there a many way sot perform this task. This is called the Fill Command under the edit menu. But if you look next to the Fill Command there is no shortcut listed. Well, there is an undocumented shortcut to fill whatever it is you are trying to color! It is Shift+Backspace (MAC Shift+Delete). This is one of those really cool undocumented shortcuts that will save a few mouse clicks. So now go impress your friends with this secret trick!

Want to learn more tricks then sign up for one of our up and coming classes!

Stay Tuned for more Photoshop tips!

In a previous, article we talked about some ways to save time in Final Cut Pro during the capture process. One of those ways was to start and stop your camera record between scenes, so that you could later choose DV Start/Stop Detect to break up your footage into separate media clips after capture. Well, you can use this same method with HDV footage, but its a little different.


With HDV footage, Final Cut Pro can automatically detects scene breaks and creates new media files on the fly as it discovers a scene break. You can dictate how timecode breaks effect capture in the "On Timecode Break" pop up menu, but you will not have the Warn After Capture option with HDV footage.


Centering one layer in another and duplicating a layer quickly is very important in Photoshop. If you have every tried to put two layers together and then spent time trying to center up one of the layers you know how much work it takes. Well, all you have to do is drag the object from one layer while holding down the shift key as you drag and when you release the mouse button, presto it’s perfectly centered! Also, a really quick way to copy layers is to press control+J (Mac command+J). Now you have a quick way to center a layer in another and duplicate a layer!

Stay Tuned for more Photoshop tips!

It has been awhile since I’ve had to use the AJA IO box. I was pleasantly surprised at how flawless my experience was. I last time I had to use the unit was about a year ago and I didn’t have the same experience. At the time the MAC OS was 10.2.4 and version 1.1 of the IO software. It was buggy to say the least. I am not sure where the issue was, but as I recall, AJA was aware of it and working on it. What I do remember, was the great technical support at AJA. I really felt there was a passion for what they were doing. And the unit itself at its price point is a modern marvel and the power it gives in a serious edit suite you almost have to have. Well, I am happy to report the same great technical support was there but this time the software was ready for prime time.


I am now working in a suite running 10.4.4 on a G5 dual 2.5 gig and 6 gigs of ram with version 2.0 of the AJA driver. This time I had to install the unit myself. In the previous scenario there was a video engineer on staff who installed and configured the suite. I was a little hesitant to delve into the endeavor on a deadline. The goal was to hook up a beta SP deck via component and convert it to DVCPRO 50. Then use a single external firewire 800 drive to capture to. Of course, AJA doesn’t support this configuration and they said that actually the capture window might not even work. Its true that the AJA box does all its IO functions through a single 400 firewire port. And the other 400 port is on the same controller. If you want to use a 400 drive it can be done by installing a second PCI 400 port. I am happy to report that from the time of opening the box to rigging up the all the cables including audio mixer video monitor and installing the driver and presets was less than two hours. I launched final cut picked the appropriate ‘easy set’ up and transcoded the beautiful analog to digital footage. The RS422 device control plugged right in and worked perfectly. Just for the heck of it i decided to capture 10 bit uncompressed video to the same drive, and lo and behold that worked too! But why would you want to waste the space on this, the DVCPRO 50 codec is fantastic. Its almost scary how cheap and simple it is to do high quality desk top video these days, thanks AJA!

P.S. And this time when I called for tech support it I went straight to a tech, and he didn’t even ask for my name!

SATA or serial ATA is the latest low cost hard drive solution. There are an abundance of of third party vendors now offering SATA configurations for the MAC. One that stands out is FIRMTEK. They offer a verity of PCI-X solutions for the G5 MAC. I haven’t personally tried it but you could buy a SATA card and a low cost duel drive enclosure stripe it as a 0 raid and have no problems playing back multiple streams of uncompressed SD video or DVCPRO HD material. 800 gigs for less than $500 dollars! They also make 4 way controller cards that would let you take your internal drives off the motherboard completely. Freeing up valuable processor power!


If there is one piece of advice I can give when capturing your media is that you need to label your tapes and name them in Avid the exact name of that particular tape. If you have several tapes that might correlate with the same name just simply number them in order. The main reason for this comes into play with batch capture. If you delete your media to save hard drive space or more than likely it is lost when you least expect it, then no problem if you did your job. Avid uses the time code from your video cassette to navigate to the various frames. Every tape has the same time code so if you put in the wrong tape then your Avid system will go out a search those time codes on the tape in the deck, right or wrong and batch capture that media. So if you name your tapes correctly and insert the tape Avid asks for then there will be no worries of capturing the wrong media.

Just remember do not forget to name your tapes in your Avid the same name that your write on your tapes!


Photoshop has become such an essential tool I thought it would be a good idea to share some of the shortcuts that I use in my workflow. As you know cropping photos in Photoshop is a part of daily life and being able to crop to your exact dimensions is crucial. In NTSC video we need to keep our images to 720X486. This is may sound easy but when you type a width of 720 and a height of 480 in your toolbar, Photoshop defaults to inches. You could type 720px by 480px but there is an easier way instead of having to memorize all of the abbreviations. Enter the values and then right click (Mac control+click) in the field and a pop-up of measurements will appear. Now you can select the correct unit and you on your way. See, we can make things easy!

Stay Tuned for more Photoshop tips!


To become an effective and efficient editor you must learn as many shortcuts as possible. My favorite and most used shortcut is the Fade Effect. Not only do I use this effect to fade but I created a keyboard shortcut for it because I use it so much. I have many titles through out my shows and about 90 percent of them need to fade up and then down. The fastest way to accomplish this is the first edit all of your titles into the timeline and then select multiple titles by using the segment mode. Here is the breakdown:

1.Edit your titles, graphics, clips, ect. into your timeline.

2.To fade multiple titles at once, with the same values, enter either segment mode.segement modes.gif, and press the shift key while selecting your desired segments.

3.Click the Fade Effect buttonbenfastmenu.gif from the Tool Palette Fast Menu or use your keyboard shortcut once you have created one.

4.In the Fade Effect dialog box, enter the number of frames to fade up, down or both.

5.Click OK and you are done.

Now go out and fade away!


Photoshop has become such an essential tool I thought it would be a good idea to share some of the shortcuts that I use in my workflow. When I am creating a graphic or trying to add elements to a graphic it can be very useful to find the center of your image. The first thing you need to do is press Control+T (Mac Command+T). This brings up the Free Transform bounding box. The bounding box has a handle in the center of both sides and we will use those to help us find center. Now you need to make your rulers visible. To do this simply press Control+R (Mac Command+R) and then drag out to the horizontal and vertical ruler guides to the handles that mark the center.
Now you should feel very centered!

Stay Tuned for more Photoshop tips!

Earlier, we discussed how to create multiclips and how to insert new angles after you have created the multiclip. Another powerful feature in Final Cut Pro's multiclip functionality is the ability to Cut (make an edit) or switch (without making an edit) between angles while swapping various audio and video angles. For example, while you have the side angle of the band walking on to the stage as your active piece of video, you can use the audio from a completely separate angle that has commentary. Here are a few things to keep in mind when you are playing audio and video independently!

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- Due to linking relationships, interaction between audio and video assets depend upon if the multiclip in the viewer was open from the timeline or the browser.

- If the content in the viewer came from the browser, audio and video are locked and all active audio assets will have to come from the same angle. You can switch between audio and video angles, but lets say you wanted to use the audio in clip 3 while the video in clip 1 was active, all audio for every angle would then change to what was playing in clip 1.

- If it is a sequence multiclip in the viewer, you can change audio and video items independently.

Have you ever had the issue where your audio waveforms (or sample plot) are to large or small within the Avid Xpress timeline? There is an easy way to resize the waveforms, without changing the volume.


All you need to do is hold down the following keys to resize the audio waveform sample-plot. This is extremely useful when looking and imported music from an audio CD. The waveform is usually going to be too tall, and needs to be resized to be usable.

PC: Ctrl,ALT (+,-) keys on the keyboard
MAC Command, Option (+,-) keys on the keyboard

When you use the Capture Now option to ingest HDV footage into Final Cut Pro, you will find that the process is very similar to how you would capture regular DV footage, but there are two unique differences. The HDV capture may not be in real-time and the Log and Capture window is not utilized.


Capturing HDV Footage To The Apple Intermediate Codec:

1 Activate the Browser by clicking in it, then create a new bin.

2 Either right click (if you have a two button mouse) or control click on the bin to designate the logging bin.

3 Name the bin, then press enter.

4 Go to file > Log and Capture.

5 When the capture dialog box appears, type a name for the clip, then press Capture. You can press the Escape key to abort capture at any time.

Now that you have captured your HDV material and have made a modern work of art, check out this article that discusses some of the common Final Cut Pro Output Problems.

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After Effects 6.5 can read and write native OMF video media essence, as used in Avid OMF essence files. You can import OMF files as you would other footage types. When you import an AAF file that references an OMF file, the OMF footage also imports. The .wav files are not imported at the same time. You can import them later to sync up with your OMF file but if you are going to export the file back into Avid Express Pro this is not necessary. The great feature that I use everyday is the export to OMF. This not only saves space on your hard-drive but it also helps to preserve quality. Just remember the audio that is associated with the OMF will not export. This is a great new feature of After Effects for Avid Express Pro users! One of the many things you will learn in our up and coming After Effects Intro 5-Day class.

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As we all know HD is the wave of the here and now. Some shows that have been running in SD for years are now facing the HD dilemma. One of the longest late night shows in the U.K., Later...With Jools Holland, has been a tape based show for the past 13 years and in 2004 went away from a linear based system to HD. This was a huge step considering they skipped SD digital. Once again Avid made this transition easy according to the shows ACE edtior:

HD was not as scary as I thought it would be … it's a fantastic visual concept and the pictures are almost too good.
- Perry Bellisario, Founder, Ace Post Production
Read the whole story and get ready for HD coming soon to your world!


Do you have a favorite task that you perform on all of your photos before you import them to video? Lets say you want all of you images to be 720X486 or you want them all to be saturated by an additional 10 percent. Well any task you can think of in Photoshop can be applied in one swoop using Photoshop Droplets. Here at Genius DV we have the Photoshop for Video tutorial to help you apply droplets to all of your photos or graphics. Do not forget to sign up for one of our up and coming classes to help you further your career in the film and video industry!

Previously, we had discussed how to make a multiclip and how to prepare your multicamera shoot so you can best utilize the multiclip capabilities of Final Cut Pro 5. Today, we will discuss how to add angles to multiclips in the viewer window. After you have created a multicip, you may discover that you need to either add a new angle or replace an old one.


Inserting New Angles Into Multiclips

1 Either in the Timeline or the Browser, double click on a multiclip to open it in the Viewer.

2 From within the browser or timeline, drag a clip to one of the angles reprepresented in the Viewer.

3 Keep holding the clip over the Viewer window until the Insert New Angle and Overwrite angle overlay appears, and release over the Insert Over New Angle Option. You have just inserted a new clip angle into the viewer.

To replace an angle, you would simply follow steps one and two, then choose the Overwrite Angle option in the overlay menu in step 3.

Before you can export our output your HD footage from Final Cut Pro 5, all effects need to be rendered and the sequence needs to be properly conformed to MPEG-2 GOP structures. If you are printing to video, Final Cut Pro will perform these two tasks as part of the process.


Outputting HDV By Printing To Video:

1 Make sure the physical connections are made, such as the camcorder connected to your computer by firewire.

2 After you have inserted the tape in the camcorder, double click a sequence to open it in the timeline or open a clip in the viewer.

3 Go to File > Print to Video.

4 Within the Print to video dialog box, choose any leader or trailer elements you wish to include and select looping options etc..

5 Choose OK.

6 Press the record button on you camcorder, then choose OK.

If you are new to the editing scene, but are starting out with the top of the line wares such as Final Cut Studio and a shiny new HDV camera, this page can answer many of the HDV questions you may have!

Whether you are cutting in Avid or Final Cut Pro, you should approach your audio work with a plan. When adjusting audio, prioritize your work by starting with the tracks that are meant to be heard above all other tracks, such as narration, and work your way down the list.


Keep these guidlines in mind when working with DIGITAL AUDIO:

- The volume of the combined tracks should not exceed 0 db.

- Set primary tracks well below 0 db (-12 db - -6 db) to compensate for your other audio tracks.

- Set music track to -15 db or -18 db. Be mindful of your mixed levels. You may be able to either bump your music levels up or bring some levels down in order not to exceed 0 db.

Get Soundtrack Pro training here!

If you're planning to use the multiclip function within Final Cut Pro and have limited experience with shooting from multiple positions, there are some things you can do to make your life much easier.


Synchronization and organization are extremely inportant in a multi camera environment.

- Many professional use a master timecode generator to distribute the same timecode information to each camera and recorder. This will allow each source to recognize the same point in an event via the same timecode.

- You can also lay down a visual or audio cue before or after the event such as a camera flash or audio pop to use as a point of synchronization.

- It is also advantageous to number or place a letter on each camera, from left to right as you stand facing the action you are recording, to signify which angle of the scene the camera was assigned to.

- Either before or after your shoot, label your tapes carefully describing which angle it was assigned to . Final Cut Pro uses angle numbers and letters as part of its organizational strategy.

Learn how to create multiclips in Final Cut Pro 5. This is a good tutorial!

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Are you ready to feed your Tiger? Avid now has full applications of Express Pro and Media Composer for Macintosh OS X Tiger. Avid has been supporting the Mac systems since 1989 on the Mac 6 and has continued to support and push the levels of performance for the Macintosh. The latest version even includes a 3-D titling provided by Marquee. If you are ready to step-up to the latest version of Avid for your Tiger then hurry to the latest Avid update!

Now that you have constructed a visually compelling DVD, complete with motion menus and catchy transitions, its time to find some great audio! First, make sure you know what the compliant digital audio formats for DVDs are, there are only a few: DTS, 16 or 24-bit, 48 or 96 khz, PCM (AIFF, WAV, SDII), Mpeg1-Layer2.
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Whether its a downloaded MP3 file or a rip from your favorite CD, both having a sample rate of 44.1, If you do not convert your files to 48.1, DVD Studio Pro will make the conversion for you when go to build your project.

Set up iTunes to convert your files into the proper sample rate.


Confused on which clips you have or have not used in your sequence? Then I have a friend for you. Selecting Media Relatives is a great tool that Avid incorporated to allow you to figure out which clips you have used in your sequence. This is very helpful to not only speed up your workflow but to also keep you from inadvertently using the same clip twice. Here is a quick run down of how to use this feature:

1.Open the bin that contains the chosen clip or sequence.

2.Open any other bins that might contain the media relatives that you want to find.

3.Resize and position the bins so that you can see their contents.
Text view is best for viewing as many objects as possible.

4.Click the chosen clip or sequence, and select Bin > Select Media Relatives.
The system highlights all related objects in all open bins.

Now your know who your relatives really are!

I have been seeing a common problem arise in many of the forums that I participate in, concerning Final Cut Pro and Final Cut Express 2 locking up and having to be forced to quit, while attempting to execute the Capture Now option. For those of you who may be using Final Cut Pro 4 or Final Cut Express 2 and having this same problem, your antivirus software is the culprit.


There is documentation from Apple that states there is definitely a conflict with the antivirus wares Norton Antivirus and Virex. They suggest that you either turn these applications off while capturing or use the batch capture option instead.

Discussion forums are a great way to get answers to your editing questions. Discuss Final Cut Studio and Avid here!

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Are you annoyed that your external NTSC montior has a playback delay? I lived with this for about six months before I found this obvoius cure! Here is the pill for delay sickness:

1.In the Project window, click the Settings tab.

The Settings scroll list appears.

2.Double-click Video Display.

The Video Display Settings dialog box opens.

3. Click the Desktop Play Delay slider and drag it to increase or decrease the amount of frame offset.

You might need to readjust the frames a few times to find the correct offset.

4.Click OK.

You can always tweak this for different devices, so have no fear and adjust to your output needs.


You have spent many hours saving your Avid Title Tool templates and you now want to access them in Marquee. Well, as usual, Avid has a way. Converting your templates will take a little time but it is worth it. Here is a breakdown of the process:

1.In the Title tool, click the Templates pop-up menu, and select Edit Template.

2.Select the template you want to convert, and then click Open.

3.Click Yes.

4.In Marquee, in the Templates Library window, right-click the folder in which you want to save the template, and select New Template.

5.Type a name for the new template, and then click OK.

Happy titling!

If you have been authoring many DVD's, or even if you plan to in the future, you should really get to know the ends and outs of Compressor 2. In the current HD world, Compressor 2 allows you output for H.264, MPEG-4, the standard in the two new HD-DVD specifiactions, producing higher quality video at lower data rates.

Compressor image.jpg

You can also do more in-house with this version. The A.Pack application now rests in the new Compressor 2 workflow, giving you the ability to encode both Dolby audio and video to Mpeg 2 simulataneously. This is a very powerful application that rightfully deserves its own training DVDs and also your personal, undivided attention.

Check out this review of "The Art of Encoding Using Compressor" training DVD.

Now that you have authored a few basic dvds and have gotten comfortable with connecting tracks to buttons, setting timeouts and placing overlays for menus that where originally built in photoshop, its time to work on the artistic value of your presentaion. How about improving the visual flow of your DVD with a little 'first play' movie that visually sets up the main menu. For example, how about before you take the viewer to the main menu of your baseball documentary, you begin by showing shots of the stadium with people cheering in the stands, then cut away to a batter stepping up to the plate and transitioning to a still of that same shot of which you will use as the back drop for your main menu.

lots of DVDs.jpg

If you need a little inspiration to take your DVD authoring to the next level, I suggest you take a look at The Cat In The Hat DVD. It's the most dynamic, attention grabbing DVD that I've ever seen! Sometimes, all it takes to get the creative juices flowing, is seeing what the application your using can do when its pushed to the edge. Check this out!

Having the ability to create a visual map of the shots you want to lay down, storyboarding, can be very advantageous for an editor. Don't worry, if you're not a polished, free-hand sketch artist or don't want to invest in storyboard creation software, Final Cut Pro provides a quick and easy solution.


Creating a Storyboard In Final Cut Pro

- Go to your bin that contains all of the clips that you want to use for your sequence and either control click or right click in a grey area and choose View As Medium Icons in the contextual menu. Enlarge your bin view so that you can see all of your clips. Now you have a visual representation of the action conatained in each of those clips.

- Either control click or right click in a grey area again in that same browser window and choose Arrange > By Name in the contextual menu. All your clips will be put in alphabetical order, making it easier for you to find the action that you desire (If you have labled descriptively).

- Start selecting the order of the clips from left to right in preparation for your sequence edit.

Having audio problems? Learn how to solve audio problems with Final Cut Pro.


A fast and efficient editor is what we all strive to become. If you have ever had an effect that you wanted to apply to multiple segements in your timeline you know how repetitive and time-consuming it can be to apply them one at a time. The most common effect to apply in Avid Express Pro would have to be color-correction. Well, here is a quick and easy way to apply your favorite effect to multiple segments in one easy swoop:

To apply an effect to multiple segments on the same video layer:

1.Click above the Timeline and to the left of the leftmost segment that you want to select, and begin dragging to the right and down to activate a selection box.

2.Continue to drag the selection box to the right until you lasso the rightness segment that you want to select.

3.Release the mouse button.

4.If the segments where you want to apply the effect are not contiguous, Shift+click a segment to deselect it. You can also Shift+click to add one or more segments.

5.Open the Effect Palette.

6.Double-click the effect's icon that you want to apply to the segments.

Now go out and have fun with all of your extra time!

There was an aricle I read a few days ago in USA Today that said music videos are moving from television to the web. To me, this transfer has been apparent for quite some time now. Just think about it, when was the last time you turned on MTV and didn't see a reality TV show? If rock stars are turning to their fansites to debut their music videos, then its time for us Avid and Final Cut Pro editors to become savvy with video streaming.


With household broadband use rising, 80 percent of households are still in the 56k range, which means video on the web is still in its infancy, but possibly not for long. Will you be ready?

Check out this tutorial on exporting multimedia quicktime movies for streaming. Your future marketability as an editor may depend on it!

custom views.gif

Avid Express Pro allows you to be creative without boundaries. You also have the power to make the Avid interface look and act the way that works in for your style or workflow. Being able to save a custom bin view is very useful and very easy to do. In Text view, you can create and save customized bin views that you can easily access from theBin View pop-up menu.
To save a custom bin view from the Text tab:
1.Open a bin and click the Text tab. bin view.gif

2.Add or hide columns according to preference. The bin view name changes to italic.

3.Click the Bin View pop-up menu, and select Save As.The View Name dialog box opens.

4.Type a name for the custom view and click OK.

As you make changes to your custom view you can overwrite the current saved view by holding down the .alt key and selecting the replacement of your current view or even overwrite another custom view.

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