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December 2005 Archives

Although Final Cut Pro 5 comes equipped with new functionality for moving content and edited sequences into Apple's digital compositor Shake, their are certain media and effects that will not transfer.

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Here is the list according to Apple:

Filters and composite modes applied to FCP clips, still image files, motion effects, stand alone audio files, images created in FCP such as color bars and slates, and quicktime audio tracks.

Take a look at Shake 4!

Note: This tutorial is for Mac users. View the PC version of this tutorial.

This video compression tutorial is provided to assist those that are new to video compression with Sorenson Squeeze 4. This tutorial will help you with understanding the basics of video compression with Sorenson Squeeze 4. The first thing that you can do is Open the Sorenson Squeeze application.


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Once the application is open, navigate to the Input Window which shows an image of a File, a Folder and a Camera. Select Import File.


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Once you select the Import File icon you can navigate to the file that you would like to compress. This can be a video or audio file. In this example, I use a video called RiverandStreams3.mov.

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Once you select your file click the Open button in the Dialog Window.

Note: This tutorial is for PC users. View the Mac version of this tutorial.

This video compression tutorial is provided to assist those that are new to video compression with Sorenson Squeeze 4. This tutorial will help you with understanding the basics of video compression with Sorenson Squeeze 4. The first thing that you can do is Open the Sorenson Squeeze application.


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Once the application is open, navigate to the Input Window which shows an image of a File, a Folder and a Camera. Select Import File.


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Once you select the Import File icon you can navigate to the file that you would like to compress. This can be a video or audio file. In this example, I use a video called symposium.mov.

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Once you select your file click the Open button in the Dialog Window.

If Motion is being quirky, here are some things you can do to try and troubleshoot. Keep in mind that Motion is inherently graphics card intesive and at times performance is going to appear to be executing slower than expected. Make sure that the machine that you are running Motion on meets the recommended system requirements. Now, with that being said...

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Deleting The Preferences

1 Within the Mac OS Finder, go to your home folder > Library > Preferences.

2 Locate the com.apple.motion.plist in the preferences folder, then drag it to the trash can.

Deleting Receipts and Reinstalling Motion

Make sure Motion is closed before you perform this.

1 Navigate to the Applications Folder in your Mac OS and open it.

2 Move the Motion application to the trash.

3 Navigate to Library > Receipts.

4 Within the Receipts folder, find the "Motion2.0pkg" file and drag it to the trash.

5 Reinstall Apple Motion.


Learn how to key in Motion!

If you have purchased a late model Power Mac G5, released after October 19th, 2005 or an iMac G5(iSight) model computer and have installed DVD Studio Pro 3 on them and have had nothing but problems, there's a reason why. Apple has just released a statement that DVDSP 3 only works on machines that have AGP video cards and the late model G5's and iMac G5 (iSight) computers use a newer PCI Express video card making DVD SP 3 unsupported by these models.

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It was stated that simply attempting to import an MPEG 2 asset into DVDSP 3 on a Quad Processor model is enough to make the program unexpectedly quit. Apple suggests that you upgrade to version 4 of DVDSP if you are using the hardware mentioned above and wish to use DVDSP.

By processing the log files from your streaming server, you can learn a lot of valuable information about your visitors and their media viewing habits. To process those log files you can use an application called Sawmill available at www.sawmill.net. The application is available for Windows, Linux, Mac and Solaris.

The application provides the following:

- List of viewer IP addresses
- Media playback history
- Visitor click throughs
- Information on viewer Operating Systems
- Ability to create Daily, Weekly, Monthly and Yearly reports

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Sawmill 7.2.2 provides analysis of over 600 log file formats with support for Windows Media Streaming Server, Helix Universal Server and QuickTime/Darwin Streaming Server log files.

Learn additional information about Sawmill 7.2.

View Live examples of Sawmill statistics.

If you have ever kicked out audio from a Final Cut Pro project into Soundtrack Pro, laid down some realtime effects, saved the changes, then sent it back into FCP but could not hear the effects, its because the effects were not rendered to the audio file. This goes for audio in Apple's Motion being sent to Soundtrack Pro and back again as well.

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In order to use realtime effects in a project go to Process > Bounce Realtime Action within Soundtrack Pro to render the real-time effects to the file itself. You can also apply effects as actions by selecting them from the Process menu These effect will be also be rendered to the audio file.


Learn how to set up to record voiceovers in Final Cut Pro!

For all of you Final Cut Pro artists out there who also shoot, the next time you are out in the field and you have only one performer on mic at a time, try recording your mono audio into both channels of your camera. The only difference is let channel one be your main input and pot down channel two to a lower db. This will give you some room in post to salvage an area where the host may have shouted or raised his or her voice creating a hot level.

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For any of you who may have missed the sneak peak of After Effects 7.0, here it is again!

Dreamweaver has for a long time been an excellent tool to use for authoring videos for the Internet. The software works great for authoring Windows Media, Real Media QuickTime, Flash and other formats. What is nice about Dreamweaver is that it has built in FTP capabilities that allow users to reliably upload content to web servers and streaming servers. If you have the information for a hosting provider you can create pre-configured FTP profiles to easily go to site directories. Once users have access to the FTP location, Dreamweaver uses a drag and drop interface for moving files from the local folder to a remote folder.

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Learn more about Dreamweaver 8

With the release of Dreamweaver 8, there is added authoring support for Flash content for Progressive Download and Real-Time Streaming. There are a host of media player templates that can be used for authoring Flash streaming videos. Dreamweaver 8 also includes the Object and Embed Elements necessary to make for good authored Flash content. The application even adds the default html code that prompts users to upgrade to the latest version of the Flash player if it is not installed.

Dreamweaver 8 is a powerful tool!

Other Links:

Purchase Streaming & Compression Tools from GeniusDV E-store

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Listen to the GeniusDV: Streaming Media Podcast

Director/Editor Kevin Rhoades used Final Cut Pro to capture the excitement and intrigue of Bluephoria, the hit theatrical performance by, you guessed it, "The Blue Man Group." The show has already been a hit in London, New York and Las Vegas and it was Kevin Rhoades' job to cut 40 hours of raw footage into an hour and half video with a return time of only a month.

They were shooting in the dark with 12 synchronized cameras.

“It’s a very dark show with a lot of blacks and very bright colors,� says Rhoades. “HD gave us the latitude we needed to capture the strong contrasts.�

Read how Kevin and his crew pulled it off!

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The Frame Viewer will appear as a tab in the Tool Bench Window allowing you to perform side by side comparisons of the previous edits with the current frame, following clips with the current frame, scenes with and without filters applied so that you can make sure your sequence has the flow you intended. This is a good way to eyeball scenes that may have been shot under various light conditions and for lining up shots for sequence continuity.

Simply go to Tools > Frame Viewer. Each drop menu in the Frame Viewer will give you options of which clips you can monitor in your sequence and how you wish to view them.

Learn how to create a Radio Waves Effect in After Effects!

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The Batch Export capability is very useful if you need to export many clips and sequences to various formats and settings. Each clip or sequence in the Eport Quque can have its own bin and independent export settings. You could export multiple sequences as Quicktime movies containing different dimensions if you wanted to.

1 Select all of the bins, sequences and clips you want to export from within the Browser Window. Keep in mind that you can choose items from multiple projects.

2 Go to File > Batch Export and the Export Queque will open.

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3 Press Command B to create a new bin and drag new clips from the browser to the bins in the Export Queque if additional clips are desired.

4 Click on the Settiing tab to mark your export settings.

5 Set the destination of your export by clicking on the Set Destination button.

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6 Pick the desired file format from the Format list.

7 Pick a preset setting from the Settings list. The selections you see in this list are contingent upon the file format you chose earlier.

8 Configure additional settings, if you are given the opportunity, by clicking on the Options Tab. Whether you are given the option to use the Options tab is contingent upon settings you have made earlier in this process such as the selection of a file format.

9 Click on naming options to create a custom file extension. You can choose Strip Existing Extension in order to add your own custom extension. You can add a custom extension by typing it into the entry box to the right or choose whether or not the default extension for the export will be attached to the name of the file.

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10 If your chosen format is a Quicktime Movie, you will be given the option to export Audio or Video or both. You will also be prompted to choose which type of Quicktime movie you wish to export. If your exported material has transitions between media, you will have to recompress.

If you have set a range in a sequence, via in an out points, for this export, then choose Use Item In/Out or the entire sequence will be exported.

11 Click OK twice for your settings to be accepted, then click Export in the Export Queque Window.


See how to export a still image from your project in Final Cut Pro.

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Editing brings many different challenges everyday. From color correction problems to audio issues, it always seems something needs to be fixed. Well a problem I ran into recently was some footage that I had obtained to edit for a client did not have enough handles to perform any kind of transition. In other words when the action was over he immediately pressed the stop button and only pushed the start button within maybe one second of the action beginning. The major problem with shooting like this is that he had many shots that I had to use to the very last frame and the nest shot I had to start within the first few frames. This leaves no frames to make your dissolves or fades. So first of all hopefully if you shoot your own footage or have an excellent cameraman this will not happen very often but when it does here is a quick solution. Open of the title tool and create a black title. Just make a square the size of the box and fill it with black. Save to a bin. Now you have a fade to black transition. All you have to do is determine the size of fade and apply directly above the transition. So, if you what a 30 frame fade then simply load the black title into the source monitor and mark an in and an out to equal 30 frames. In your time line find the edit point and place an in point 15 frames to the left of the edit point. Now overwrite the black title to the video track above your edit point. The next step is to make this title fade. Select the black title and enter into the effects edit mode. Now all you have to do is place a key frame 7 frames from the first key frame and 7 frames from the last key frame. Now select your first and last key frames and make the foreground to equal zero. Select the second and third key frames and set the foreground to 100. Before you close the effects editor drag the effect icon into a bin so that you can use this effect without have to make again. You now have built a perfect 30 frame fade to black for any situation.

What would it do for your workflow if you could use third-party After Effects plug-ins right inside of Avid Xpress Pro? That would save you the time of moving over a project from the Avid into After Effects and it would save you money if you did not already posses Adobe After Effects. Well such a workflow has now been made possible!

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Elastic Gasket is an adapter that will allow you to utilize a list of supported third-party After Effects plug-ins without ever leaving your Avid editor. Version 2.0 is compatible with any Avid system that supports AVX 1.5 or later, and RT mode support. Windows based Avid Media Composer Adrenaline 1.0 or later and Avid Xpress Pro 4.0 or later.

The makers of Elastic Gasket suggests that you test the compatibility of a given version or plug-in feature with your Avid System via the demo version of the ware before making a purchase.

As you are working, you may find it usefull to link complex edits that span across multiple tracks for the sake of manintaining sync and the integrity of the effect. One way to do this is to create a merged clip.

Merging Clips Within the Timeline

1 After you have created the multi-layerd effect that you desire, syncing mutliple layers of audio with ONE video track, Select all of the clips that you aligned in the sequence by using the selection tool.

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2 You can either press Command and L or Go to Modify > Link to link the clips.

3 Drag the clips that you have just linked into the Browser window to form a merged clip.

merged-clip.jpg The merged clip will be named after the video clip.


Are you thinking about turning your project into a DVD? Take a look at this DVD Studio Pro tutorial about Stories.

Let's that you have already finished this week's show for a weekly outdoor sports program featuring a hunt during gun season and just as you are about to print to tape, you realize that in one of your many shots a hunter does not have on his orange hat. Perhaps he took it off to scratch his head, but you don't want to project a negative image of your show in regard to hunting safety, so you decide to replace the shot.

After you have cut out that clip, a quick way to figure out the exact duraton of the gap in the show is to:

1 Option click the Auto Select Control for the track that contains the gap.

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2 Place the position indicator in the gap and press x to mark the space (clip).

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3 The duration of the gap can be found in the Timecode Duration field in the Canvas Window. This would be the left field.

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See how to utiize three-point editing to close a gap in your FCP timeline!

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Digital Juice is the world leader in royalty-free professional animations, stock footage, music, layered graphics, clip art, and templates. When it is said that

What you see is what you get.
when it comes to video this could not be farther from the truth. Try and watch your favorite program with the sound turned off and then turn up the volume and close your eyes. You will find that you understand everything that is going on with your eyes shut. Well, Digital Juice realized this and came up with one of the most awesome additions to their set of editing tools. The Digital Juice Sound FX Library is the most comprehensive collection of audio effects ever collected together into a single package. Produced by renowned industry-veteran sound designers and distributed at 24-bit/96kHz resolutions, the artistic and technical quality is state of the art. The keyword searchable index makes the over 10,000 clips eminently usable, like no other media library anywhere else. Divided into more than 170 categories, the library goes beyond simple Foley effects and explosions with new categories that include musical logos and professional voice work. The Digital Juice Sound FX Library is designed to give audio and video professionals the tools they need to enhance, exaggerate and create a completely immersive audio soundscape for any production.

Many are not aware that if you are creating a business model for streaming content based on the MPEG-4 standard there are some licensing issues you need consider. The good thing about the licensing for MPEG-4 content is it is mainly targeting towards those individuals or organizations that are making money off of streaming MPEG-4 content. Here are some of the details under the MPEGLA MPEG-4 Visual Patent Portfolio License:

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Get more details about the MPEG-4 Visual Patent Portfolio License

On a Subscription-basis, royalty fees need to be paid if you have more than 100,000 subscribers in a Calendar Year. There are no royalty fees that need to be paid if you have 100,000 or less subscribers in a Calendar Year. The maximum that any entity has to pay is $300,000 for greater than 25,000,000 subscribers.

"In cases where a user's products or services do not reach the minimum threshold amounts above which royalties are payable, the user would still need to conclude the MPEG-4 Visual License with MPEG LA in order to benefit from the coverage the License provides," says Dane E. Rauschenberg, Licensing Associate for MPEG LA.

On a Title-by-Title basis, royalties paid are the lower of 2% of the price paid to the Licensee or $0.02 per title for video greater than 12 minutes. A good thing is that there is is no royalty for a specific title of 12 minutes or less.

This MPEG-4 licensing information only pertains to Visual content. It does not include audio.

If you would like to find out more information and details about MPEG-4 audio licensing you check out these websites:

www.sisvel.com
www.vialicensing.com
www.fraunhofer.de
www.licensing.philips.com


Note: Specials Thanks to Dane E. Rauschenberg from MPEG LA for providing an overview of the MPEG-4 Visual Licensing.

WARNING....This tutorial may not prove helpful to any current relationship you may be involved in.


If you're wanting to take work home with you or if you need to cut while in route to Grandmas house for the holidays, why not recompress your media files at work to lower-resolution files, move those to your laptop and cut on on your Powerbook?

Recompressing Your Sequence

1 Select your sequence in the Browser, then go to File > Media Manager

2 Within Media Manager, click on the Media options and choose Recompress. Uncheck the option for 'Delete Unsued Media From Duplicated Items.'

3 Go to the 'Recompress Media Using' options and slect 'Offline RT NTSC (Photo JPEG).'

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4 Go to the Media Destination pane of the Media Manager and use the Browse tab to navigate to a location whee you can create a folder to save the recompressed files in.

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5 Click OK in the Media Manager, then give your recompressed file a unique name. Click Save. Your recompressed file will now appear in the assigned folder at a lower resolution and a new tab will appear in the FCP Browser containing the file.

Check out Pyromania, a new five-disc collection of royalty free HD clips.

You can reset the default audio output in Final Cut Pro for all future sequences by going into the User Preferences Window.

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1 Go to Final Cut Pro > User Preferences and choose the Audio Outputs tab.

2 Either choose a preset from the list or customize one by editing it. If you choose to edit a preset, it will signify that a copy will have to be made. Click OK in this dialog box.

3 Within the Audio Outputs Preset Editor, enter a name and description for the new preset you are creating.

4 Select the number of audio channels for access.

5 In the Grouping category, choosing Stereo for each pair of audio channels you will be allowing for panning. The Dual Mono selection will allow for each channel to be used as a distinct output.

6 Select a downmix level. If you are working with many audio tracks, downmixing will allow all of those tracks to be mixed into a single stereo output. The downmix level represents the level of each output to avoid distortion. Think of it this way, the more channels you have to downmix the lesser this value needs to be to avoid distortion.

7 Click OK for this dialog box and OK in the previous box.

See how to adjust audio for a group of clips in Final Cut Pro.

In a huge sequence filled with many clips, it can be difficult to select a range of clips. the Select All Forward and Select All Backward tools in Final Cut Pro will allow you to simply select all clips before or after a designated clip.

Selecting All Clips After a Designated Track

1 Choose the Select Track Forward tool from the tool palette.

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2 Click on the clip that you wish to make first in the selection. All other clips following this clip will be selected.

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Selecting All Clips Before a Designated Clip

1 Choose the Select Track Backward tool from the tool palette.

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2 Click on the clip that you wish to be last in the selection. All of the preceeding clips will be selected.

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Learn how to set marker durations in Final Cut Pro!

When capturing in Final Cut Pro, it is important to take a look at your audio capture settings under the (clip tab) within the ‘Log and Capture tool’.

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In most cases, it is unnecessary to capture two channels of audio if you are using material that was shot in the field (single camera). Recording two channels of audio will take up your timeline real-estate. Unless you are out in the field with two microphones (1 microphone into each channel on your camera), it is a waste a time to record two channels of audio into Final Cut Pro.

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In Final Cut Pro 5.0, changes have been made within the ‘clip settings’ tab in terms of capturing mono vs. stereo clips.

To record clip(s) in a mono-format, unlink the (audio link) icon, and turn off the green audio speaker icon for the channel that you do not want to record. One strange caveat, is Final Cut Pro will still show an audio level, even though nothing is being recorded to that particular channel.

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Using this method will improve your workflow and give you extra real-estate within your Final Cut Pro timeline. Otherwise, it can become frustrating dealing with meaningless extra audio tracks.

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It is also important to note, that Final Cut Pro will automatically center a single audio track so it plays back on both speakers (left and right channels).

For all of you Final Cut Pro and FC Express users out there who have updated to the latest version of Mac OS X and Quicktime and are experiencing connectivity issues between the NLE and a deck or camera, you may need to trash some of your Quicktime Reciepts. Here's how to do it!

1 Navigate to /Library/Reciepts/

2 Find the Quicktime Receipt files.

3 You are only selecting the ones that have version numbers included in their names such as these:

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Keep in mind that your receipts may be different from these.

4 Drag these receipts to the Trash Can.

5 Go to Quicktime for Mac OS X then download and install the latest version of QuickTime.

Besides using iTunes to listen to your favorite Podcasts, watch QuickTime videos, Video Podcasts, or burn CD's of your playlists, it can be used for one more thing, encoding audio. iTunes can be used to convert audio from a music CD, CD-r or Stand-alone audio file format.

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Here are some of the formats that you can compress your audio to using iTunes:

- AIFF
- AAC
- Apple Lossless
- MP3
- and WAV

To encode your audio file to a specific format you will need to set up your audio encoding settings in the iTunes Preferences accessible via the Edit Pull-down menu in iTunes. Once inside the Preferences, click on the Advanced Tab and Select the Importing Sub-Tab. Under the Import Using drop-down menu users can choose which format to encode their audio files to. Next, in the Settings drop-down menu choose Automatic or Custom. Once you are happy with your settings, Click OK to close the iTunes Preferences Dialog Window.

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To convert your audio file to your desired format, Click on the Track in the iTunes playlist. Next Right-click ( on Windows) or Control-Click (on Mac) and select "Convert Selection to .....". The Convert selection option will display the audio format you designated in the iTunes Preferences. The compressed audio file can be found in the default location for iTunes audio files which is the iTunes folder under My Music (for PC) or Music (for Mac).

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This page is an archive of entries from December 2005 listed from newest to oldest.

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