Learning AVID...

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by acearchie, Dec 12, 2010.

  1. acearchie macrumors 68040


    Jan 15, 2006
    After pretty much mastering Final Cut Pro I would like to get AVID under my belt as well especially after noticing that being a student I can pick up a copy of Media Composer for just over £200!

    Does anyone recommend any good books or websites that perhaps have footage available to walk through the workflow and process with?

    I learnt final cut myself but that has taken over a year to really get nice and comfortable and I would like to get AVID sorted faster as I can have it as a viable choice straight away!

  2. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Avid and FCP approach many things in a fundamentally different way so my suggestion is to pretend you've never learned any editing software before and approach Avid as a blank slate. It will probably take you longer to learn Avid as it is much less 'newb friendly' than FCP (although some of that has changed a little w/MC5). When working with Avid there is basically 'the Avid way' and 'the wrong way' for most tasks so you have to follow the workflow that Avid wants you to follow. While rigid this helps Avid create a reliable work experience. Conversely FCP typically allows you multiple ways to do a given task, which can be great sometimes, but the down side is that that freedom means FCP will gladly give you enough rope to hang yourself and watch you dangle from a tree.

  3. r.j.s Moderator emeritus


    Mar 7, 2007
    Ain't that the truth.

    Working with AVID is painful, IMO. There is pretty much only one way to do anything, and AVID is picky as hell - about everything, including other apps on the machine.
  4. mBox macrumors 68020

    Jun 26, 2002
    Go for it!

    I use both FCP and Avid MC (Nitris DX) extensively and I say go for it!
    Now you havent stated how deep you are in this field.
    Do you plan to work with high-end footage e.g. XDCAM, RED, ProRes, etc..
    When you get into these parts is when things get tricky.
    Currently I have both FCP and MC (software) plus a REDRocket card in the same Mac and so far no problems.
    At the base level both apps fare the same until you get into the formats I mentioned above.
    Good luck, it's a great ride :)
  5. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040


    Jan 15, 2006
    Thanks for the help! I realise that I have to neglect what I know so far as my previous experience with AVID really annoyed me as I am used to being able to create markers and sync the footage to the music and I couldn't find a way to do this and my teacher at the time couldn't help me either!

    To explain what level I am at: I have been using final cut as an amateur over the past two years doing a few paid jobs here and there.

    I am currently studying broadcast media at Brunel Uni but will be moving to a specialist collage studying digital film production in the new year.

    Lynda looks like a good option but I can't always ensure that I have internet so I think I would quite like a hard copy book, unless it's possible to download the videos?
  6. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
  7. boch82 macrumors 6502

    Apr 14, 2008
    I went the opposite way that you. Was an AVID guy for 10+ years and now am on FCP for my current job.

    I also teach introduction to editing courses.

    The best books for learning editing software are from focal press. I always have the students buy them for both FCP and AVID.


    There is a great book that I used when switching that was FCP for Avid editors. Im not sure if there is a book going the other way.
  8. hsilver macrumors regular

    Jul 17, 2002
    New York
    Smart move. I also recommend Sam Kaufmann's book but haven't checked if it's up-to-date for latest AVID Media Composer which has been a significant upgrade with many features similar to FCP. If not, the Weynaud books will surely have a good up-to-date manual.

    There are markers in AVID - they're called locators. However for marking the beat in music, in AVID you set up a keyboard shortcut for ADD EDIT and hit that as you play your sequence on the beat. It divides your music track and you can do a replace edit for each divided piece or mark in-to-out and overwrite your video track.
  9. Sdougherty macrumors member

    Nov 8, 2009
    Sam Kaufmann is actually my AVID teacher here in Philadelphia, his book is phenominal and better then any video's that I have come across. And as Wolfe stated, Act as though you have never known any other editor, because if you treat AVID like FCS, you will surely get too frustrated to really learn it!
  10. mBox macrumors 68020

    Jun 26, 2002
    Act maybe but I think being open minded is best. Ive gone thru many different apps in 3D, graphics and digital video. I teach some of them at a college level and I always open up with "be open minded" to cross platform users. When I teach FCP, Ill get a few Avid and Premiere users so I try to link the similarities.
    In the end, they all have quirks when it comes down to the dirty work :p
  11. puckhead193 macrumors G3


    May 25, 2004
    I would go for it. I was thinking the other day about tooling around in avid.. then I went online and saw that is like $2000+. Maybe later :p
    As you are a student knowing both FCP and Avid only makes you more valuable when applying for a job. Always think about your resume and your reel. It something MORE you can add.
  12. mBox macrumors 68020

    Jun 26, 2002
    From my past and present experience, showing confidence and being at ease goes a long way. Now of course dont be to confident where you would call out your new/possible employer on something as trivial as e.g. Mac vs PC, FCP vs Avid, Coke vs Pepsi...
    Ive had the displeasure of interviewing people that got too cocky and would fall flat when it came down to the actual work.
    When working with employees/clients, being at ease helps in so many levels.
    If your an editor and you can deal with the client(s) breathing down your back, then you will go a long way in this field :)

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