Is FCE the product for me?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Dr Strangelove, Jun 30, 2009.

  1. Dr Strangelove macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2008
    I've been searching around the internet to find more info on this program and what it is capable of with limited success. Currently I am an iMovie user but find the program lacking many features I wish it had after making several movies of varying length

    The big project I am undertaking is a documentary of my son's life in the style of a TV series. I will need to make a cool intro and edit lots of film to produce it into a show. Each 20-30min episode will encompass a year of his life. (He's 5months old now, so this should be cool)

    FCP seems mighty expensive, so I was looking at FCE as my main editing and producing program.

    Does it have enough features to help me keep things interesting or should I be looking at PRO or some other program?
  2. mathcolo macrumors 6502a

    Sep 14, 2008
    Yes, it does look like FCE is the program for you. According to what you said, you wanted something a bit more sophisticated than iMovie and not as much money as FCP. FCE is perfect then!

    The one thing I should note, however, is that you should make sure your computer fits the system requirements, because running a program like FCE or FCP on an inadequate machine could be detrimental ;)
  3. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    Go to the Apple web site, in the "support" section. You can download the entire user manual. This will detail every feature of the program. It is something like 600 pages long.

    If you are only shooting a "consumer format" video the FCE will work for you. But be warned there is a bit of a learning curve. Don't expect to be able to use this software right out of the box

    Read up on film editing too. Not how to use FCE but how to cut footage into a show. There is a lot to learn about the art of editing. You need to learn this before you can shoot so that you shoot the right shots an editor can use. Very few amateurs do this and they shoot tons of stuff they can't use. You need to worry about continuity of motion, establishing shots, inserts and so on. All this applies to film and video. Pick up a few books at Amazon. The Apple user manual does not cover it at all.
  4. Dr Strangelove thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2008
    @mathcolo: I have a current gen 15" maxed out MBP, so I would hope that system is plenty to work with FCE.

    @ChrisA: Great suggestion on the manual, I am downloading it now. Learning curve is no problem at all. As far as learning how to cut footage into a show, are there any websites you suggest?
  5. teleromeo macrumors 65816


    Dec 2, 2006
    kidnapped by aliens
    I have been playing with the same question since I edited some of my family movies on my new macbook pro. I also would like to know when FCE was introduced and if there will be upgrades soon.
  6. mathcolo macrumors 6502a

    Sep 14, 2008
    Definitely. You will have no problem, but sometimes those less experienced try to run FCE on an iBook G4 and it doesn't work so well.. :rolleyes:
  7. Dr Strangelove thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2008
    Just pulled the trigger from Amazon...figured what the hell. its $150.00 its gotta be worth it.

    Thanks for the input guys. If you know of any great tutorial sites, please let me know.
  8. KeithnFW macrumors newbie

    Oct 11, 2007
  9. jla930 macrumors member

    May 11, 2009
    Western PA
    Online tutorials are great. But another thing you might want to consider is a book like:

    Apple Pro Training Series: Final Cut Express 4

    By Diana Weynand

    It's a workshop book that comes with a disc with lessons. It was recommended to me by a friend who found it invaluable for learning FCE, as did I. With this book, you learn by doing, not just watching or reading. Amazon is currently selling it for about $28.

    If you do get the book, I recommend that you also do the lessons in the appendices.
  10. Vanilla macrumors 6502a

    Mar 19, 2002
    Atlanta, GA
    I would thoroughly recommend the following training videos for FCE 4.

    It's all free and the guy is superb at explaining all the key basics in a way that is easy to understand. You can also download the sample clips and follow along with each tutorial.


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