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Final Cut Pro Output Problems

Final Cut Pro Capture Problems
If you are experiencing capture problems with Final Cut Pro, here are some things to look out for. First, I reccomend that you record to a dedicated media drive. A firewire drive is a good choice, just make sure it runs at 7200 RPM (revolutions per minute). Do not go with the slower 5000 RPM drives. They will work, but barely. Also, I do not reccomend a USB 2.0 drive. Even though a USB 2.0 drive is faster, it packets the information differently, and does not supply the constant throughput needed for digital video. Some drives feature both firewire and USB 2.0 ports. If so, use the firewire connection instead of USB 2.0. Make sure your scratch disk is set to your external firewire device.

Make sure your capture scratch is set to your external drive. Also, I reccomend looping all of your firewire devices together. Most of the older model G4's only had one firewire controller (even though there are two ports on the back). This means a conflict can occur when two devices are talking to the same controller.

I have also seen problems with capturing from certain camera's or decks that record in 12bit audio, or 32Khz. I reccomend using 16bit audio or 48Khz. Make sure you check your camera settings before recording in the field. If you do accidentally record something with 12bit audio, you may want to consider dubbing it to a new tape in 16bit mode. I recently experienced a strange situation on a G5 system where it would not record any 12bit DV audio files onto a external firewire drive without dropping frames. Another thing to watch out for is mixed sample rates. In general make sure all of your clips are at 48Khz. If they are not you may want to consider converting them to 48Khz. GeniusDV has a free tutorial on how to capture using Final Cut Pro if you need help using iTunes to convert the audio sample rates before importing your clips into Final Cut Pro. Be especially careful of MP3 files make sure you convert them to 48Khz files before importing them into Final Cut Pro.

Also, copy all of your CD files or graphic files to your external firewire drive before importing them into the browser window. A common mistake, is to import items from your Mac OS X desktop. This will cause problems, since Final Cut Pro will attempt to play the files from where there live. Make sure you copy ALL of your required media to your external firewire drive.

Other things to consider are: Using shorter and higher quality firewire cables betweeen your drive and the computer. I have also seen problems where using two different brands of cables caused a conflict. You may want to consider purchasing the same indentical brand of firewire cable and then sticking to it. Always check for lose connections, in particular the 4-pin style of firewire connector. A lot of times, that 4-pin firewire connector comes loose, which obviously can cause problems.

If you cannot hear your audio while capturing, this is fairly common. You simply need to turn on the external speaker option within the QuickTime settings. This menu is located within the advanced audio button within the Final Cut Pro audio/video settings. Detailed information on how to do is available in the GeniusDV audio/video settings tutorial located on this website.

Some of the same rules apply when attempting to output a Final Cut Pro sequence. GeniusDV has a good tutorial on how to output using Final Cut Pro 4.0 .if you need additional help. If you are running a slower machine, you may want to consider turning off (mirror on deskop). In Final Cut Pro 4.0, this is now located in the Audio/Video settings menu within the (A/V devices) tab. Since playback is a process intensive operation, you can tell Final Cut Pro to disable the video refresh within the Print to Video monitor so there is more resource power available to shooting your program out via the firewire port. For extremely long shows, I reccomend turning the mirror on deskop feature to off. With this feature off, you will be less likely to drop any frames during the output process.

If the Print to Video process seems to be taking a very long time to render, it is probably because you have mixed sample rates within your sequence. Verify that all the clips are of the same sample rate. Again, I reccomend that you convert everything to 48Khz. If you have mixed sample rates within your timeline, not only will it require additional processing power when editing, but you will have to render all the mismatched sample rates every single time to you select the print to video feature.

If you are seeing a delay between what is on your Final Cut Pro output viewer and what is being recorded, this is normal. This is because there is a delay in transferring the data via the firewire cable into an analog source. Everything should be fine when you play back the master tape.

Other common output problems, are not so easy to troubleshoot, and may pertain to a digital-analog convertor box or external capture card. Unfortunately this article does not cover these types of problems. You might try the GeniusDV: and post a message regarding a particular hardware issue.

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