Pro Photog getting into Video

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by MattSepeta, Jan 12, 2012.

  1. MattSepeta macrumors 65816

    MattSepeta

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2009
    Location:
    375th St. Y
    #1
    My day job is starting to get more and more requests for videos so we are going to be investing in some video equipment and software in the very near future. I have a few questions, mostly regarding FCP X.

    I have been using FCP 7 at my old job on a daily basis with MiniDV cameras. Now that I am at a new job, we will need to buy some software and I am not sure if FCP X is right for me.

    Video will be done on a 5DII (95%) and 7D, possibly with some MiniDV cams if needed.

    1. I read that FCP X has built in stabilization? Does this need to render every time you make a cut? How is it applied? Is it simply a filter? How effective is it? I know that lots of DSLR video is QUITE shaky, so if this is effective it might be worth the switch alone.

    2. How does FCP X play with the 5DII files? Should I still be transcoding with streamclip?

    3. As a very experienced FCP7 editor, will I be able to jump right in, or is there a learning curve?

    ---------Non-FCP X Questions---------

    -Does anyone have any experience with Magic Lantern? I am interested in the focus-peaking capabilities.

    -Lights. Are there any light-kits suitable for doing interview style videos of just one person to be had for under $1k? Is this realistic? I do not know anything about continuous lights, so this is all brand new to me.

    Thanks for any answers!
     
  2. WRP macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    Location:
    Boston
    #2
    Just continue with FCP 7. I just started a new position and created the producer/editor role in a MR firm. I made them buy FCS3. It still has tons of life left in it and with all the additional software included $1000 is nothing.

    Yes there is a steep learning curve with X. NLE's have worked basically the same for decades and FCP X shats all over convention.

    Never used ML as I shoot with a 7D and it can't be magic lanterned.

    There are plenty of 3 stage light kits for under $1000. I would go big or go home but as long as you aren't going crazy these should work decently.
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/250330-REG/Smith_Victor_401440_K78_Professional_Portrait_Three.html

    What about sound? Are you recording to at least a zoom? Are you working with a nice shotgun on a boom pole or are you working with lavs?

    Are you using a loupe or monitor?
     
  3. handsome pete macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2008
    #3
    I disagree. FCP was on its last legs before the release of FCPX. That's why there was such an outcry from the professional community due to the lack of pro features and the change in workflow. Longtime FCP users had been waiting for a major update for a while.

    FCP is still fine for those firmly entrenched in Apple hardware and the FCP workflow. But for anyone starting anew, then I would strongly recommend Adobe or Avid if they're looking for functionality beyond FCPX. But the old FCP isn't a good investment at this point.
     
  4. MattSepeta thread starter macrumors 65816

    MattSepeta

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2009
    Location:
    375th St. Y
    #4
    A few things to clarify-

    A couple clarifications-

    I would have to buy FCP7 all over again, I had been using it on a work-owned imac for the past 3 years, and recently left the company.

    This is why I am interested in FCP X, $300 is a heckuva lot easier to bite than $999.

    I do not currently nor do I plan to do any serious multi-cam or anything too heavy duty. I will not be sending projects about to different people, it will be just me.

    -As far as I understand, these are the major shortcomings of FCP X?

    -Will my FCP 7 plugins work on FCPX? I put them all on a drive before I left the company.

    -For sound we are using an H4N for the time being. I plan on MLing my 5DII and getting a preamp to record XLR right into the 5DII.

    -I have been using an LCDVF for the past few months and have no problems with it. Once I buy a cage-rig I will be getting a monitor I think, however...

    -When not doing tripod mounted work, I do a lot of club/wedding video work that requires mobility and speed. Would something like this be worthwhile for on-the-go? http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...e_Inc_SIMP0000_Simplis_Solo_DSLR_Support.html
     
  5. cgbier macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2011
    #5
    For your plan of work, FCP X is perfectly suited. You are a typical member of Apple's target group.
    The shortcomings are mainly for the high end folks working in broadcast or Hollywood. For our level, yours and mine, there are only very minute issues.

    Especially for a tapeless workflow, the new media manager is terrific. Once you have organized your stuff, you can cut your program together in about half the time you'd spend in FCP7 (once you are used to the new workflow).

    The magnetic timeline is the best invention since sliced cheese. I was skeptical at first, but now I'm used to it that much that I have hard times to work in FCP6. The older one feels so clumsy.

    You don't need to connect your H4 to the camera. FCP X synchs up audio and video perfectly. There's no dedicated multicam feature as in FCP Classic, but the workaround is more comfortable to me than the old way (when Apple builds its multicam onto this workaround, it'll be IMHO the best on the market).
    I have only tried stabilization once, but it worked pretty well. Just shoot a bit wider, as your footage gets cropped in the process.

    Check out the Pixelcorps channel on Youtube. They give a lot of insight to the FCP X workflow. Steve Martin and Mark Spencer are certified trainers, so they know at least a bit what they are talking about.

    I'd download the FCP X trial, and if you don't like it, look into the Adobe package. I was never a fan of it, but when you are used to FCP7, it is pretty easy to learn.
     
  6. Kevin Monahan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    #6
    Standing by to answer any questions about the Adobe video workflow. If you shoot DSLR footage, you'll find the Warp Stabilizer in After Effects very, very useful. Handheld footage looks like it's on a rail.
     
  7. MattSepeta thread starter macrumors 65816

    MattSepeta

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2009
    Location:
    375th St. Y
    #7
    Thanks! I actually learned NLE on Premiere YEARS ago, and have spent the past 3 years using AE for motion graphics and composites pretty extensively.

    I have never actually stabilized any footage with it though, I will have to check that out. Does it involve any manual tracking? Or does it automatically analyze moderately shaky footage?

    CGbier: So I won't need to spend useless time trying to sync my audio and video tracks? That alone might be worth the price of admission!

    I am downloading FCP X trial and will be using it on a shoot this weekend.

    I also just ordered my "pocket dolly" . YESSS
     
  8. cgbier macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2011
    #8
    A few mouse clicks, and you're done. Check out this tutorial:
    http://youtu.be/gNOfgBClIvQ
     
  9. WRP macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    Location:
    Boston
    #9
    While a true major update would be nice it isn't even close to its last legs. I can multicam 16 streams of R3D footage just fine. How is that its last legs? If you mean running h264 natively, well go Adobe (and you still shouldn't). Best bang for your buck out there is still the FCS3 suite.

    Show me a $1000 suite you can do what I mentioned above with a fully incorporated DVD authoring program, an audio mixing program complete with royalty free foley and music tracks, a (albeit fisher-pricish) compositing app, a pro level color grading application, an fully function NLE, etc.

    Sorry, but FCS3 will run me well into 2015 and $1000 for 3 years is nothing. Not to mention the stock audio alone will pay for itself in 2 months.
     
  10. handsome pete macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2008
    #10
    You're right in that FCP is still useable and will be for the foreseeable future. We even recently purchased 3 new FCP seats because our other edit suites are primarily FCP based. However, Apple will no longer support FCP. It has no future. Software like Adobe and Avid is still evolving to take advantage of today's hardware. And this has nothing to do with h264 footage. For someone getting into the business now and looking to invest in software, then FCP is just not a good buy.

    FCP was a great value at $1000. But if you're looking for value today then it's my opinion that Adobe beats that hands down. Sure, it's at a higher cost, but you get Premiere, After Effects, Photoshop (those 3 alone worth the cost), Illustrator, Audition, Encore, Flash, and Encoder (and of course future updates).
     
  11. Kevin Monahan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    #11
    The Warp Stabilizer came in with CS5.5. Yes, it analyzes footage and then stabilizes it automatically and with very little scaling.

    See the results around 5:41 in this video:
    http://tv.adobe.com/watch/customer-stories-video-film-and-audio/adobegarethedwards/

    ----------

    Do you mean transcoded R3D footage? At which resolution? HD? 2K? 4K?

    I know Premiere Pro can handle native R3Ds at 4K with a beefy system, but I didn't think FCP could.
     
  12. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #12
    FCP X can transcode the footage in the background. And, yes, you should still transcode. Yes, you can work w/H.264 natively and you can also run a marathon in flip-flops though neither is ideal.

    Forget everything you ever learned on any NLE.


    Nope.


    Lethal
     
  13. Boe11 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2010
    #13
    I went from FCP7 -> Avid -> FCPX. Enjoyed them all.

    Based on the the criteria you've provided, I can whole heartedly recommend FCPX. As someone mentioned, you're the guy they had in mind when they made this software. Get some time behind the wheel, get some training (even free online tutorials), and you'll love it.
     
  14. Nostromo macrumors 65816

    Nostromo

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    Dec 26, 2009
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    #14
    Can't you use Adobe After Effects with FCP X?

    If yes, it would probably ridiculously expensive to buy AE outside a suite, and then buy FCP X.

    Too bad Apple doesn't offer such a stabilization.

    PS: It will be very interesting who will prevail in a 10 year timeframe: will all editing software look like FCP X, or will everything rather stay the Avid/Premiere way.
     
  15. Richardthe4th macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2008
    Location:
    Below Sealevel
    #15
    Uhmmm, Motion?

    Yes, exciting times.

    But perhaps in 10 years we will be using this...
    http://www.makingof.com/insiders/media/john/underkoffler/john-underkoffler-tamper-s-with-the-future-of-editing/94/209

    Or open source...
    http://www.lightworksbeta.com/
     
  16. Nostromo, Jan 18, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2012

    Nostromo macrumors 65816

    Nostromo

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    #16

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