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Choosing the Right Codec for Capturing SD Video

While there is no one perfect codec, this article can help you improve your capture image quality, while reducing file size, when capturing SD (non-DV) video.

Thoughts on "The Cloud" — Interview with Peter Chang

There’s a lot of talk these days about previewing, accessing, storing, even archiving media in “the cloud;” a vast amorphous pool of storage on the Internet. But is this a good idea? And what are some ways we can take advantage of this? In this interview with Peter Chang, president of Oxygen Cloud, we discuss what the cloud is, how we can take advantage of it, and what some of the limitations are.

Deleting Clip Markers in Groups

Normally, you can delete one marker or all markers. This article shows you how to delete any arbitrary range of clip markers.

FCP 6: Chroma-keying using Motion

Chroma-keying, also called blue-screen or green-screen, is the process of making the background transparent so you can insert the foreground into a different shot. It sounds easy, but in practice, its tricky. This is because the chroma-keyer in Final Cut is, to be kind, sub-optimal. In this article, I’ll show you a better way to key — using Motion. Better yet, you don’t need to really know Motion to get great results.

Trade-Offs to Consider When Using DV for Professional Work

What are the disadvantages of using DV, rather than SD, video? This discussion also features comments from a variety of readers.

A Checklist for An Editing Project

Here is a series of ten questions that new editors can ask their producers to make sure everyone is on the same page at the start of a project. This is also a useful bidding tool.

Calculating The Rate to Charge For Your Time and Equipment

Editing is both a craft and business. Which means that, unless you are independently wealthy, you need to find a way to make money at it. This article describes how to calculate the rates you charge for editing, for the use of your equipment, and how to handle travel expenses. As well as provide a link to a tutorial I’ve created with more tips on how to grow your business.

Creating Chapter Markers in H.264 Video

Chapter markers are frequently used in DVD production. However, you can also put them in QuickTime movies to simplify navigation. However, compressing using H.264 makes this process a bit more difficult. But not impossible, as this article explains how to do it.

Retaining Chapter Markers in H.264 Video

Adding DVD chapter markers to a QuickTime movie is reasonably easy. But how do you do this for H.264 compressed video. This article describes what you need to know.

FCP 7: A Better Way to Change Clip Speed

I discovered this technique a few months ago and was stunned at how easy it is to change the speed of a clip without have the duration change destroy the organization of the rest of my sequence. This is VERY cool!

Creating an SD 4:3 Center Cut from HD 16:9 Footage

Here’s the problem. You have high-definition (HD) 16:9 footage that you need to create a standard-definition (SD) 4:3 full-screen image. This means that you are going to lose some visual information on the sides of your image. What’s the best way to do this? This article explains what you need to know.

Cool FCP Keyboard Shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts make work a lot easier. Here are eleven that I recently discovered that I never knew existed; along with a suggestion on how to get keyboard shortcuts that use Function Keys to work on your computer.

FCP 7: Changing My Opinion On How To Export From Final Cut Pro

The best way to export from FCP is reexamined with new attention given to changes in distribution mediums. Also, Larry provides a detailed explanation of how he exports files from Final Cut.

DigiBeta Workflow

DigiBetacam is a standard in video-tape. However, many new editors don’t know what settings to use to capture it properly. This short article describes what you need to know to select the right codec for your project.

More DVD Problems

Larry fields a few questions regarding DVD problems from transcoding HD to SD, the advantages of Blu-Ray, and more.

Anchor Point Tricks

Here is a fast way to use anchor points in the Motion tab to create motion effects quickly, while saving keyframes.

Adding Timecode to a Sequence

Here is a fast way to create a sequence with burned-in timecode – very useful for client reviews and revisions. In fact, we can do this in about six steps, as this tutorial shows how.

Setting LiveType for 16:9 NTSC or PAL Projects

When it comes to creating 16:9 projects in LiveType, the process is not intuitive. However, after you read this, whether you need 16:9 in PAL or NTSC, it will be a piece of cake.

Capturing Large Chunks of HDV

HDV is the latest video format craze, but it isn’t like DV; or any other video format we are used to working with. This article explains how HDV is different and what you need to know to use it successfully.

Blurring the Edges of a Clip

In Final Cut Pro, filters process before motion effects. Most of the time, this is fine. However, this order prevents creating certain effects. This tutorial shows how to create nests, how to change this processing order, and how to blur both a clip and the edges of a clip.