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Old Dec 13, 2012, 09:26 AM   #1
dodge this
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Getting past the "iMovie on Steroids" whines

I teach video production in a high school. I was able upgrade a lab that was running Windows machines running Sony Vegas and WMM and could only really handle SD video, so I upgraded to Mac. However, due to Apple being... Apple... I could not get FCP 7. I went with Final Cut X instead of other software.

Which in the minds of the students is a HUGE mistake.

Teens are good at cherry picking what they want to see. For example... The ones that download cracked versions of Premiere at home are always telling me about how the movie industry is moving like a hurricane to Premiere because of some blog they read. So of course, all the negative feedback on the release of Final Cut X is what sticks out in their minds. Plus, there are quite a few visual similarities to iMovie, which to the kids is negative.

Cracking Premiere apparently seems to be easier than a drunk blonde cheerleader at a party, because many of them seem to have done it, and many of them swear by premiere. I have a couple stubborn kids who long for the days of Vegas, as well as the Windows lab they could bring their little exe files in that could run administrative stuff under student security settings and the like.....

In any event, its not my first rodeo, but even I grow tired of the kids whining for anything other than Final Cut X. I have talked to other teachers in my area at the HS level, and FCX has a hugely poor rep among kids. Students respected Final Cut 7, but have no love for X. Any ideas on how I can reason with the less than reasonable and get them to be more open minded about X, or is using Final Cut X like pissing into the wind in terms of preparing kids for industry and perhaps I should jump ship to AVID or something along those lines?

Any thoughts or feedback, because I am out of ideas in my room.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 09:53 AM   #2
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I understand school budgets so I know money is extremely tight. Is there any chance you could get a budget to add Premiere to the editing environment? Assign the students a short and have them edit it in both apps. It would be a great learning experience for them. I happen to agree with them that Premiere is a better option than X but only because it more closely conforms with everything I've learned over the years.

If they hate X so much then challenge them to raise the funds to buy Premiere for the lab? Just another thought.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 12:51 PM   #3
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I'm really happy to hear that a bunch of younger people dislike FCPX.

It means FCPX won't sell later on* and Apple would have regretted making it such a POS, or otherwise Apple will be quicker to fixing it up.

I suggest you attempt to get a refund on FCPX (It's possible) and get hold of Premiere Pro (You can get the student & teacher edition* and stuff) or at least Premiere Elements (Not sure if there's student & teacher, but it's cheap regardless).

Trying to get people onto FCPX seems like a bad idea right now. I don't think (And hope) that it will last long in the future of professional video editing.

*Idea is, you get students onto your product, students get used to it, and will buy it in the future.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 01:18 PM   #4
Kevin Monahan
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I think Premiere Pro is the one for the future, but I'm biased.

I like the idea of teaching multiple tools so that the students will be prepared for the future. I learned on Avid Media Composer, but I became an expert in Final Cut Pro. Now I work at Adobe, but even if I didn't work here, I'd be looking at it pretty seriously as my editor of choice.

Learning After Effects was probably the tool that has taken me the farthest, though.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 01:40 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by dodge this View Post
Cracking Premiere apparently seems to be easier than a drunk blonde cheerleader at a party, because many of them seem to have done it, and many of them swear by premiere.
I'm sure your students downloaded already cracked versions or a push-button cracking tool as opposed to actually cracking the software themselves. Finding cracked software is pretty straight forward and even FCPX, which can only be purchased via the Mac App Store was up on torrent sites within a day or so of its launch.

With that being said have you tried stressing to the kids that learning the fundamentals of editing and video production translate to any brand of camera and editing software? If you are worried about stunting their 'professional growth' I wouldn't. They are HS kids and by the time they enter the professional market who knows what it will look like. Also, many of them seem adapt at getting other software which they are free to use and learn outside of the classroom. When I was in college our media lab was all Avid but some students had FCP at home and chose to cut on that instead (and this was with FCP 1 & 2 which no one used).

If the complaining doesn't lessen and starts turning into a hurdle to learning I'd do what pigbat suggested and try to get a refund from Apple. Off the top of my head I don't know what EDU versions of PPro or the Adobe Creative suite go for but the EDU version of Avid Media Composer is $295. For editing in major markets Avid is the name to beat but it's not like your students are going to roll out of HS (or even college) and right into a big editing gig. Learning the fundamentals of editing and production is key as that knowledge will always be applicable where as specific hardware and software will come and go.

Many editors that are in their 50's or 60's probably started their careers (and certainly their student projects) handling actual film. Then video tape came along and they learned lindear editing. Avid then came onto the scene with the first broadly successful NLE systems which were much different than the linear systems they replaced. Apple and it's upstart FCP rose to prominence and then got shuttered. I guess my point is that no matter what the students learn on today the editing world will be a different place by the time they enter the professional world. It might be a lot different, it might be a little different, but it will certainly be different.


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Old Dec 29, 2012, 02:39 PM   #6
dodge this
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Originally Posted by pigbat View Post

If they hate X so much then challenge them to raise the funds to buy Premiere for the lab? Just another thought.
In terms of lab management running two or more nle is also a pain. I want to avoid it if I can. However if I must I want to use more industry friendly software as the 2nd software. Thus for me avid is an option. Although I have worked with it, and it is not... My favorite software.

I admit I miss premiere 6 and the transition track. I like drag and drop too....


In any event, we are trying to raise money for a new audio mixer. The old mackie finally gave up the ghost and to me audio is 1/2 the video story and matters more than the editing software.

I have worked with kids stressing the need to be able to adapt to different software. A few listen, many do not. Teenagers.... My post originally came from frustration with a kid who was using terminal (schools IT staff wants to manage the macs, not let me do it, but its a windows shop and thus they don't know all the things to limit.....) to try to install premiere, and the "discussion" we had as I resurrected the machine. I am feeling much better now.

I get the feeling that teens are much like the stubborn old farts in the industry who learn one way and thus that's the only way. For example: I asked a kid what would they do if the only job they could find in the industry was in an avid house and the boss would not get them premiere or allow them to bring their own machine in. Kids response was he would turn down the job and work fast food instead.

I was just fed up when I posted this. Next semester starts the heroes quest and telling a story in 30 seconds. I will have the kids appreciate commercials as mini stories yet. Hopefully

Thanks for all the feedback. Sticking with final cut x for now.....
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Old Dec 29, 2012, 06:50 PM   #7
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Stop teaching. Make the kids important. Tell them here it is and if you want my help......... YOU KNOW WERE TO FIND ME.
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Old Dec 29, 2012, 07:27 PM   #8
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Honestly, if the students hate FCP X but don't have a good reason then they should at least give it a try first. Claiming all the studios are moving to Premiere based on what a website says isn't a legitimate reason to prefer one over the other ... how about base that decision on the quality of their productions? I think people focus too much on the editor (NLE) and not the actual production. If your production can't be made without Premiere, then that's a reason to switch. If they haven't learned how to use FCP X (or any NLE for that matter) to it's fullest then switching to Premiere won't help their productions, and they will look sub par whether they were made in FCP X, Premiere, Avid, or Final Cut 7 catch my drift?
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Old Dec 30, 2012, 05:24 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Kevin Monahan View Post

I like the idea of teaching multiple tools so that the students will be prepared for the future.
I really agree with this.
I started on adobe, then on to FCP7 and then to FCPx.

I think that people have seen one to many blogs about FCPx and have formed bad opinions of it with out truly using it, a problem it sounds like that you are having with your students.

I think a good way of getting out of this situation is to have an "edit-off" get two machines, one running adobe and the other on FCPx, give them both the same raw footage and an hour to make something. do it on projectors in front of the whole class so everyone can see the work flows.

That way the differences can been clearly demonstrated and pros and cons worked out.
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Old Dec 30, 2012, 10:37 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by dodge this View Post

For example: I asked a kid what would they do if the only job they could find in the industry was in an avid house and the boss would not get them premiere or allow them to bring their own machine in. Kids response was he would turn down the job and work fast food instead.

I think you just need to emphasize that knowing how to use software doesn't necessarily equate to being a good editor.

For example, I know some people that know every button in Photoshop, but they're terrible designers, and would be much less favored for a position over someone less experienced, but with a good sense of design.

Knowing where to cut and how to maintain a rhythm and feeling in a film is pretty much independent of software, and I think that it should be at the core of what is taught to these kids. After all, it was originally done on film. Any old fool can cut film up and splice it back together. It's where and how those cuts are made that makes someone talented.

"I know how to use Premiere/AVID/FCPX" isn't synonymous with "I'm a good editor."

I might start the class with that.
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Old Dec 30, 2012, 04:32 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by grooveattack View Post
I really agree with this.
I started on adobe, then on to FCP7 and then to FCPx.

I think that people have seen one to many blogs about FCPx and have formed bad opinions of it with out truly using it, a problem it sounds like that you are having with your students.

I think a good way of getting out of this situation is to have an "edit-off" get two machines, one running adobe and the other on FCPx, give them both the same raw footage and an hour to make something. do it on projectors in front of the whole class so everyone can see the work flows.

That way the differences can been clearly demonstrated and pros and cons worked out.
I started on linear decks, then Premiere, then Avid, then Media100, then back to Adobe, where I've been ever since. I've used FCP 7 in there as well, but not on my home system, and thought it was fine.

I also love the idea of an edit contest, but I'm sure I'd lose that contest if I had to use FCP X. I bought FCP X when it came out, and I've updated it all along, but the times I've tried to use it have been discouraging. I spend too much time trying to figure out how to get the results I want. I tell myself that one day, when I have free time away from work for clients, I'll "erase my brain" and learn how to use FCP X from the ground up... but that day has not come, yet.

It was easier to learn to drive on the left in a right-hand-drive car in Britain than use FCP X after editing on other systems for over a decade. I feel like I've been told to fly a plane without knowing what any of the controls are for. I can manage to get airborne, but the landing is going to blow chunks!
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Old Dec 30, 2012, 08:08 PM   #12
blackmoses
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dodge this View Post
I teach video production in a high school. I was able upgrade a lab that was running Windows machines running Sony Vegas and WMM and could only really handle SD video, so I upgraded to Mac. However, due to Apple being... Apple... I could not get FCP 7. I went with Final Cut X instead of other software.

Which in the minds of the students is a HUGE mistake.

Teens are good at cherry picking what they want to see. For example... The ones that download cracked versions of Premiere at home are always telling me about how the movie industry is moving like a hurricane to Premiere because of some blog they read. So of course, all the negative feedback on the release of Final Cut X is what sticks out in their minds. Plus, there are quite a few visual similarities to iMovie, which to the kids is negative.

Cracking Premiere apparently seems to be easier than a drunk blonde cheerleader at a party, because many of them seem to have done it, and many of them swear by premiere. I have a couple stubborn kids who long for the days of Vegas, as well as the Windows lab they could bring their little exe files in that could run administrative stuff under student security settings and the like.....

In any event, its not my first rodeo, but even I grow tired of the kids whining for anything other than Final Cut X. I have talked to other teachers in my area at the HS level, and FCX has a hugely poor rep among kids. Students respected Final Cut 7, but have no love for X. Any ideas on how I can reason with the less than reasonable and get them to be more open minded about X, or is using Final Cut X like pissing into the wind in terms of preparing kids for industry and perhaps I should jump ship to AVID or something along those lines?

Any thoughts or feedback, because I am out of ideas in my room.
My suggestion (if the school will allow) is to teach the kids all three: Avid, Premiere, and FCPX (I say that knowing that educational Avid licenses are quite cheap). Teach the fundamentals of editing, and then apply them across the three platforms and compare and contrast how things work.

I personally like FCPX (am I allowed to say that out loud?), and the new version of Premiere (and friends, because Prelude and the others are a big part of it) are growing on me as well. I've never bee na fan of strict allegiance to one product: the best editor would be able to survive whether they're on the world's most tricked out $30K Avid setup or they've somehow taken a DeLorean ride to 1990 (we won't go back much further) where they have to use tape machines to put together an edit.
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Old Dec 30, 2012, 10:51 PM   #13
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My suggestion (if the school will allow) is to teach the kids all three: Avid, Premiere, and FCPX (I say that knowing that educational Avid licenses are quite cheap). Teach the fundamentals of editing, and then apply them across the three platforms and compare and contrast how things work.

I personally like FCPX (am I allowed to say that out loud?), and the new version of Premiere (and friends, because Prelude and the others are a big part of it) are growing on me as well. I've never bee na fan of strict allegiance to one product: the best editor would be able to survive whether they're on the world's most tricked out $30K Avid setup or they've somehow taken a DeLorean ride to 1990 (we won't go back much further) where they have to use tape machines to put together an edit.
I'm curious as to what the course is designed for. Is it digital video for beginners, something for people going to art school or people that want to work in the video business? Is it strictly editing or is it about the whole production? Anyhow, I think that in most classes it wouldn't make sense to teach on more than one platform. If I was in your class, I would want to learn how to cut a video, I really wouldn't care what platform you use. Where do you cut, when do you cut, why do you cut, how do you, how do you correct properly, what's a decent workflow... But then again I'm a bit older (22y/o and by no means do I work or studied in the industry) and I've used a few platform and bottom line, basics are basics. I wouldn't want you to show me how to use software, there's a million tutorial on youtube...

Depending on the purpose of the class a platform might make more sense than another. If it's general video making and you're teaching the kids about scripts, acting, lighting, camera operating and finally editing. You might as well use FCPX, you can diss the platform all you want but it's dead simple and isn't fussy, you can pump out a decent video very fast. However if it's concentrated on advanced editing or intended for people who'll be working in the industry, Premiere or Avid might make more sense.

I think you just need to drive the point home that they can learn something from you and the actual software you use doesn't matter.
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Old Jan 4, 2013, 08:22 AM   #14
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I am a student for a video production class at a technical high school. I personally love Final Cut Pro X, and switched from CS5 to FCPX because of my teacher. My teacher is in his early 40's, and was a FCP7 user, and he loved it. He moved to CS6 due to the negative reputation when FCPX was released, but he gave FCPX a try. He loved it, and he thinks that Apple did something very bold and different and rather than targeting the professionals that are already in the business, he thinks that they are targeting the young professionals who are coming into the industry. He edits all of his projects on FCPX and he totally fell in love with it.
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 06:07 PM   #15
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Sounds like your students read too many blogs and don't think for themselves ? In any case, it's always better not to put all your eggs in one basket as my grandmother used to say, so the argument you can bring up is that they have Premiere at home and can therefore learn another NLE at school. All the better for their professional lives. I ****ing hate Premiere but that doesn't stop me from being at least a bit proficient with it in case I need it for work, and FCP 7, and Avid...
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 06:20 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Siderz View Post
I'm really happy to hear that a bunch of younger people dislike FCPX.

It means FCPX won't sell later on* and Apple would have regretted making it such a POS, or otherwise Apple will be quicker to fixing it up.

I suggest you attempt to get a refund on FCPX (It's possible) and get hold of Premiere Pro (You can get the student & teacher edition* and stuff) or at least Premiere Elements (Not sure if there's student & teacher, but it's cheap regardless).

Trying to get people onto FCPX seems like a bad idea right now. I don't think (And hope) that it will last long in the future of professional video editing.

*Idea is, you get students onto your product, students get used to it, and will buy it in the future.
You're putting too much stock in software for a highschool class. These kids aren't going to need the fastest system for muilti track audio output or the best workflow. It's a highschool class, the focus is storytelling and making a movie and things. Name one thing that Premier can do that FCPX can't do that these kids will need. I don't want to get into the FCPX vs Premier argument because I think it's annoying and irrelevant. Yes the industry is moving to premier and FCPX hasn't really been adopted at all but that doesn't mean it can't cut video together.

The way FCPX handles sound is annoying to me, not that it can't do it but it annoys me. I honestly don't see what Premier can do that FCPX can't in an environment like highschool
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Old Jan 16, 2013, 03:00 AM   #17
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I work in education and encounter those exact same types of students all the time. They do get their opinions from blogs and tech articles, and don't tend to think for themselves or give anything an actual chance. This is just a new version of the Mac VS PC arguments that were big a few years ago. You'd get students coming in refusing to use Macs because they're for 'fanboys' and PCs are better. Even to the point where they would deliberately try to break the machine or make it crash just to prove a point. Now of course these same types of kids love Macs because they're popular. I wouldn't take it to heart. Such comments would really annoy me, because you take it personally as you set it up. So you almost feel as if they're insulting you directly. But i've since learnt to realise that these teenagers are just kids who can't think for themselves at this point in their live and hopefully they'll get better

As it happens, we've had the opposite problem in this case. Our students desperately want us to get FCPX, but we're still on FCP7. At this point we can't afford to get FCPX, and students complain about it on a daily basis No pleasing some people.
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Old Jan 16, 2013, 06:40 AM   #18
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I think you give the kids a bad wrap, they are right about FCPX. And what's wrong with them reading industry blogs? You are apparently content to defer to forums for your opinions.

Sounds like the problem is your school's budget (or the way it was spent), not the students.
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