Newbie To Video Editing On Mac's, Need Advice On Equipment

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by badboy21, Jan 17, 2011.

  1. badboy21 macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2009
    Hey guys, so I'm plenty experienced in iMovie, and I had a 24" iMac and will be getting a new 27", now I've only done video editing on existing .avi files for work, but I'm looking to create movies from 2 sources, a) DVD-R so they will be .vob files, and b) VHS tapes. I understand to edit a .vob I need to first covert it to an .avi or a file type recognized by iMovie right? But I am new to video editing as far as bringing in a signal such as a VCR, does anyone know what the best way to do this is? I don't have a VCR yet so any experts let me know the best high end VCR and/or capture card I'd need to get the best quality. Any advice is appreciated! Thanks!
  2. THX1139 macrumors 68000


    Mar 4, 2006
    You have barely started and you are already in over your head. I suggest some classes or curl up with a good book on FCP. There are literally dozens of ways to do what you are asking. It's up to you to find the best work flow. I'll close with asking why VCR? The ONLY reason to use a VCR nowadays is if you need to get footage off old tapes. Otherwise, it's pretty much a dead format.
  3. chrismacguy macrumors 68000

    Feb 13, 2009
    United Kingdom
    "pretty much a dead format" equates to "really, its so dead that using it nowadays unless you specifically need it for a technical reason is really, really silly" - The only reason to have a VCR even remotely close to your workflow is if you have a large archive of VHS tape you need to get into the machine and onto DVD/into Digital Files. - As the above poster recommends, get a good book on Final Cut (I recommend the PeachPit ones as a start - expensive, but they explain everything in such detail its almost impossible to get confused), or if possible take classes in it - I recommend checking local adult-ed / community colleges to start with (I was lucky to start with a book, FCE, classes and took my time moving up to Final Cut Pro to enable me to do.. well just about anything it can do really).
  4. smokescreen76 macrumors member

    Sep 10, 2010
    If I were you I'd look into DV and QuickTime. Even Wikipedia is a good place to start.

    DV is a widely recognised and standardised format used in both cameras and edit systems.

    If you have existing footage then converting it to DV will make your life easier (1 hour = 13 GB).

    QuickTime is the Mac system for dealing with video so you will need to learn a bit about what QuickTime is and what it can do - it is much more than a media player. You don't really want to deal with .avi files on a Mac.
  5. badboy21 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2009
    I'm sorry, I should have explained in more detail. I have a large collection of football games on VCR going decades back, to this point I've burned them from VCR --> stand alone DVD Recorder, which is fine. I'm trying to run them thru iMovie to edit, some of the older ones from the 70's 80's could use some TBC and color correction which is why I'm thinking of running from VCR --> AVDC 110 --> iMac. I have no problem burning them to DVD (.vob format) then editing them in iMovie, but figured if the master copy (VHS) is run thru a Canpous device it would help make the final version I edit in iMovie be the best it can be. Guess I'm just wondering what the best VCR and/or video capture device to get the best quality? Without spending thousands of course ha.

  6. zblaxberg Guest


    Jan 22, 2007

    If you're doing color correction it shouldn't be in iMovie. iMovie is not color correction it is amateur video editing. You need to get yourself Apple Color which comes with Final Cut Studio. Honestly you'd almost be better off paying someone to transfer all of the VHS tapes to DVD. VHS is a dead format. I agree with a previous poster, I think you are in over your head.
  7. chrismacguy macrumors 68000

    Feb 13, 2009
    United Kingdom
    And, this is from experience, learning Color is incredibly difficult - +1 to getting someone else to do it.
  8. idea_hamster macrumors 65816


    Jul 11, 2003
    NYC, or thereabouts
    Here's an idea:

    Ok -- I totally commiserate with the OP. I always have lots of little projects like this going on that my wife thinks are crazy/waste of time/odd/all of the above.

    Here's what you should do:

    1. If you have your Canopus/whatever box, use that to import all the tapes to DV files. Do this first, so that you have the boring, time consuming part done.

    2. Concurrent with #1, buy a book about Adobe Premier CS5, Adobe's video editing application. This includes a number of tools for color correction. Read through the book so that you have a good idea of what you'll be doing.

    3. When you're ready to go, download Adobe's free 30-day trial of Premier. Use it to work on your footage. Hopefully, you can hit the ground running, and although there is a learning curve, you'll be as prepared as possible.

    If you run out of time, you'll have a very good idea of just how valuable Premier is to you and you may consider buying it -- which is, after all, Adobe's whole reason for the trial period!

    Good luck!

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