FCP Despair... must I "render" EVERYTHING!? :'(

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by zoe.es1, Nov 19, 2008.

  1. zoe.es1 macrumors newbie

    Nov 19, 2008
    Hello helpful, knowledgable, Mac users all,

    I have just inherited a MacBook Pro with Final Cut Pro 5 (the computer has been able to handle editing on the laptop for almost a year now, on a professional level).

    I have also just purchased an HD-8Z camcorder, which films in full 1080p with an H.264 compressor. I was advised to buy HD for a Documentary MA I'm enrolling on, and was given this laptop by my uncle because he thought FCP might cope with the HD and be useful (due to personal circumstance, I can't ask my uncle these Q.s...btw)

    The problem I'm having (I think) is matching the 'Sequence Settings' (although I've entered the above info) to the 'Easy Setup' (which is set at 29fps, same as the camera). Despite having repeatedly checked, I THINK I have entered the same info in each... but obviously NOT because the programme is still asking me to 'Render' every single bit of film I shoot.

    This basically means I can't shoot footage at all, since a 3 SECOND clip takes almost 10 minutes to render.... I can only imagine how long the footage for my documentary is going to take (/the damage it will do to the laptop...)

    I'm stumped and just don't know what to do or who to ask... PLEASE HELP ME! :'(

    Thankyou (in advance) so much.

  2. johto macrumors 6502


    Jan 15, 2008
    Are you saying your HD camera outputs h.264(your camera can encode it realtime) Whoa! :confused:
    Thats very hard to believe! Usually hd cameras output "less" compressed format and you encode it to h.264 or something later in the process.

    Final Cut cannot use realtime effects on imported h.264. If you have your timeline footage on a "better" format, like dv, hd-dv, apple proress and so on, and have your settings right on the timeline, it should give you an "orange" line and not the "red" one. Then it can playback "realtime".
  3. zoe.es1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 19, 2008
    Um... well, the box says "High Definition H.264 DV Camera". And it also says 1080p. I don't really know whether it outputs this format or not, as I've never had an HD camcorder before and have no idea what I'm doing........ so I was just going by the box and the options on FCP that seemed to match it.

    How do I change my timeline settings? Is that the way forward do you think?

    I'm going to Kosovo to film a five minute documentary in December, so I REALLY need to sort it out before then.

    I'm so sorry, I seem like such an idiot. Thanks so much for your help.
  4. johto macrumors 6502


    Jan 15, 2008
    Sorry, in my knowledge , if the footage is already highly compressed, example h.264, you need to convert it back to a "non compressed" format. Example, Apple ProRes 422. Only then you can use the realtime playback with effects in Final Cut. In a sense, your camera has done the compression too early, and now you need to do extra step and also, this will make the quality bit worse, because you do one extra compression loop in the end.

    Your situation:
    Camera compressed output-> uncompressed in mac-> uncompressed import final cut -> compressed output in mac

    Ideal situation:
    Camera uncompresed output -> uncompressed import final cut -> compressed output in mac

    Most important thing for you is to find out what format can be used when importing to final cut first.
    Hope it makes any sense :)

    ps. this whole topic of video codecs, formats, final cut stuff etc is way too complex for "quick fix".
    You need good ammount of time to learn these stuff. Good luck!

    pss. final cut has over 1000 pages in the help manuals, i would recommend you start there :D
  5. Sdashiki macrumors 68040


    Aug 11, 2005
    Behind the lens
    Chalk up another reason to not purchase HD camcorders yet.

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