Monday, November 26, 2012

Rough Cut Lady

I just about died when I first heard this.  So awesome.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Friday, July 27, 2012

ISO an NLE: Media Composer Stuff

So I have been dormant because of this pilot I have been cutting in Premiere.  However, as I am wont to do, I had a casting at work and rather than capture the tape in FCP and edit it there, export from there, etc. I decided to try out Media Composer.

The days of digitizing are, as far as I'm concerned, already behind us.  But for a casting, why not break out that DVX100a from time to time?  Shoots just fine for what we need, we have a ton of tapes we can reuse over and over simply for auditions -- it just makes sense and is, in most cases, pretty simple.  Since I have my AJA iOHD box plugged in 100% of the time, capturing from the camera is always such a hassle.  I plug into the front bus and I get a GSOD, start it up and FCP7 gives me no video preview, etc.  I don't bother to troubleshoot anymore as it's not worth my time with tape.

I open MC5 and setup a new project.  Where to set it up?

I get this kind of option for a super-shared environment but I would love to know what the thought-process is for something like this.  If it's an internal project that lives on this system, I would assume that "shared" is the way to go and if it's a project I am working on and will pass to another editor at another post facility, I would choose "external" so as to keep the files together -- but really, those are just my assumptions and I have no idea what "private" would be used for?

So I create a new project (as you can see above) but this was my first huge hiccup with MC yesterday and this turned out to be such a huge issue for me that I couldn't believe people worked this way and still touted this NLE as the be-all-end-all.
I shot the casting session and know that I put the camera in 24p mode (because I'm a snob like that) so when I went to setup a new project that was NTSC, voila!  How thoughtful of AVID to have made this so simple for me!  NOT.  I couldn't capture audio and video together due to some "time clock" issue which I couldn't for the life of me understand as I knew I had no clock plugged into my tower anywhere.  This took me 5 minutes of googling to realize that although I chose 24p, I should have chosen 23.976.  Honest mistake -- I saw it there, I know it's pretty much the same but holy hell, why not choose the exact thing?  So what to do?  Change it, right?

THERE IS NO WAY TO DO THIS IN MC5.  Not sure about MC6 but there is no possible way I found on any forum or AVID guru I could get a hold of yesterday to change the format of an existing project!  You have to go ALL THE WAY BACK to the New Project window and create ANOTHER project with the right format.
I am a stickler for making sure formats match-up etc. but NEVER have I had an issue like this in FCP, FCPx, or Premiere.  Hell, even iMovie I am sure can handle this.  This is deplorable in my book.  I just don't get why that isn't possible.  The best I found was this window but still no luck.  It only gave me an option or two within the same flavor of format.
Anyway, I get to the capture window and I have no deck control.  I hit auto-configure, detect, all of that -- nothing.  Learning from my mistakes, I look in the Settings and sure enough, there's a Deck Configuration setting.  You have to manually ADD the deck you wish to use.  Dumb.
I didn't feel like hooking the camera back up for this screen shot so it shouldn't say "NO DECK" once you have configured it.

Just don't have an auto-configure option if you have to manually configure, AVID.  So I capture my footage, make some bins, make my selections, and start the export process.  Didn't have many issues there.  

I don't seem to like anyone's text generators other than FCP7s but I suppose I will have to accept that this is how they're done more often than not.
Someone will have to confirm for me but I will say that it seemed like MC5 was learning from my workflow.  It seemed to start to conform to things I wanted like font, size, placement, etc.  However it ALWAYS left that video preview on.  UGH.

Exporting was pretty straightforward and I decided to go with Quicktime references as my export module as it was super quick and very small files that I was able to send to Compressor 4 -- of which I am still a staunch supporter.  In my premiere world, I have been able to get better results with Adobe Media Encoder as well as "hinted-streaming" *(without it being called that -- actually, I'm not sure what I did differently but I have my preset saved!)

My favorite thing I noticed was what I had wished FCP had done at the beginning.  I like to organize the shit out of my projects at the Finder level and then I need to recreate that within my FCP project.  I went about doing this while making my exports and all of a sudden -- a new folder appeared within my MC5 project!  Holy GOD was this cool!
This was fuggin awesome in my mind!  After getting the deck setup and plugging in my office's one Media Composer keyboard, cutting was a breeze.  I had to get used to how the timeline worked but it was pretty smooth.  Also, I didn't really mind how it handled my media.  My biggest gripe is that I like to know where my footage is when I cut in case something goes offline.  People have always told me that Media Composer's assets are managed in such a way that you REALLY have to try to get them to go offline but I couldn't wrap my head around that.  Working with it in this capacity, though, I finally "got" it and I back it.  Pretty awesome!

I had fun and can't wait to use it some more!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Just an Update

I am the KING of updating OS's in the middle of a project.  I did it last year (with my very first Premiere project, incidentally) and all went well and here we are this year -- another update in the middle of another Premiere project and no software issues yet!  I have had two complete system crashes but I think my logic board's days are numbered on this late 2008 MBP.  Also, My Dynex eSATA ExpressCard 34 card has taken a dump with this update.  I have yet to give up hope as I believe it stopped working in Lion and then worked with an update or two.

I have some fun AVID Media Composer stuff I am compiling so stay tuned for that!