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Final Cut Pro Setup - TreetWiki

Final Cut Pro Setup

From TreetWiki

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(File workflow)
(Final Cut Pro Settings)
 
== Introduction ==
== Introduction ==
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Apple's FInal Cut Pro is something of an industry standard for non-linear video editing, and Final Cut Pro 6 is the editor in use at Treet. As it is both popular and capable of producing work to full broadcast spec, we anticipate that many production teams will want to use it to assemble their programmes for Treet distribution. This article provides an overview of approaches to file preparation and getting content into FCP, setting up the application to Treet specs, and minimising problems in using this powerful system.
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Apple's Final Cut Pro is something of an industry standard for non-linear video editing, and Final Cut Pro 6 is the editor in use at Treet. As it is both popular and capable of producing work to full broadcast spec, we anticipate that many production teams will want to use it to assemble their programmes for Treet distribution. This article provides an overview of approaches to file preparation and getting content into FCP, setting up the application to Treet specs, and minimising problems in using this powerful system.
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To maintain the fastest, most efficient, and highest quality editing workflow, this article assumes that you will convert all incoming content to Apple ProRes format. ProRes is one of a small number of [[Intermediate Codecs]] specifically designed for low-overhead, high quality work, and is highly recommended for FCP operation.
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Even if you are not using FCP, and not even editing on the Macintosh platform, you may find the information useful – and in many cases there are Windows versions or equivalents of the applications described, for example for format conversion.
== File formats ==
== File formats ==
'''The fundamental rule''' is to ''always'' re-encode everything in to '''ProRes 422''' intermediate format.  ''Always''.  (Read more about [[Intermediate Codecs]]).
'''The fundamental rule''' is to ''always'' re-encode everything in to '''ProRes 422''' intermediate format.  ''Always''.  (Read more about [[Intermediate Codecs]]).
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'''Why convert to ProRes first?'''
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* Editing is much faster (often 10 or 20 times faster, able to scrub over 500GB ProRes projects instantaneously)
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* Because frames move through the system unmodified, exporting video is very fast.  For example, an hour-long show consisting of about 40GB worth of ProRes files and complex timelines will export to a result file in about 2 minutes.
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* There is no quality loss (results are exact copies of the originally captured pixels).
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Remember that while it often "seems" that there is no loss using H.264 or other codecs, unfortunately this is far from true. For more on this, see [[Lossless and Lossy Editing Workflows]].
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'''Install Quicktime 7'''
First, you need to make sure you've installed Quicktime 7 (not Quicktime X that comes with Snow Leopard). You should find Quicktime 7 as one of the optional installs on your Snow Leopard CD, or you can download it from the Apple web site.   
First, you need to make sure you've installed Quicktime 7 (not Quicktime X that comes with Snow Leopard). You should find Quicktime 7 as one of the optional installs on your Snow Leopard CD, or you can download it from the Apple web site.   
'''If Quicktime itself won't do the conversion to Apple ProRes, try MPEG Streamclip'''
'''If Quicktime itself won't do the conversion to Apple ProRes, try MPEG Streamclip'''
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The most recent Beta version of MPEG Streamclip ([http://www.squared5.com/svideo/mpeg-streamclip-mac.html 1.9.3b5 on the Macintosh] at the time of writing) will read almost any mp4 you can throw at it, including AVC files. It will also output ''directly'' to ProRes.
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The most recent Beta version of MPEG Streamclip ([http://www.squared5.com/svideo/mpeg-streamclip-mac.html 1.9.3b5 on the Macintosh] at the time of writing) will read almost any mp4 you can throw at it, including AVC files and files created by popular Windows video capture app, Fraps. It will also output ''directly'' to ProRes.
The app is also useful for a lot for other purposes (eg converting MPEG2 stream files). It's great, because it eliminates some intermediate steps, and it's a good idea to avoid re-encoding when unnecessary.
The app is also useful for a lot for other purposes (eg converting MPEG2 stream files). It's great, because it eliminates some intermediate steps, and it's a good idea to avoid re-encoding when unnecessary.
The format you drop onto the timeline has to match exactly in the following ways in order to avoid rendering:
The format you drop onto the timeline has to match exactly in the following ways in order to avoid rendering:
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    It must use the same color space
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* It must use the same color space
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    It must use the same aspect ratio
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* It must use the same aspect ratio
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    It must have (or not have) an independent SMPTE timecode track to match your preferences
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* It must have (or not have) an independent SMPTE timecode track to match your preferences
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    It must use exactly the same codec
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* It must use exactly the same codec
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    It must be exactly the same frame rate
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* It must be exactly the same frame rate
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    It must have exactly the same dimensions
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* It must have exactly the same dimensions
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    It must use exactly the same IB-frame layout for the specific codec in use.
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* It must use exactly the same IB-frame layout for the specific codec in use.
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    The audio bit width and sampling rate must be identical and the codec must be the same.
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* The audio bit width and sampling rate must be identical and the codec must be the same.
Otherwise it will render.  Many editing programs attempt to have "renderless" workflow by allowing you to drop anything onto the timeline.  Editors who rely upon this are sacrificing significant quality and speed in their workflow.  It is good that FCP does not do this.    There are reasons why you can't simply use H264 in editing that are not obvious to people.  For example, H264 has frame "clusters" (IB groups).  You cannot do a cut in between key frames, so editors "fake it" round your edit to the nearest keyframe.  This changes the timing of cuts and edits and means that you can't seamlessly substitute higher quality materials for low quality materials (the usual technique for cinema workflow).  The unwashed masses who do amateur video could care less.  But we care, professional editors care, and we know you care!
Otherwise it will render.  Many editing programs attempt to have "renderless" workflow by allowing you to drop anything onto the timeline.  Editors who rely upon this are sacrificing significant quality and speed in their workflow.  It is good that FCP does not do this.    There are reasons why you can't simply use H264 in editing that are not obvious to people.  For example, H264 has frame "clusters" (IB groups).  You cannot do a cut in between key frames, so editors "fake it" round your edit to the nearest keyframe.  This changes the timing of cuts and edits and means that you can't seamlessly substitute higher quality materials for low quality materials (the usual technique for cinema workflow).  The unwashed masses who do amateur video could care less.  But we care, professional editors care, and we know you care!
Here are the rules you should follow:
Here are the rules you should follow:
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    Establish a default FCP preset which defines your workflow settings using ProRes
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* Establish a default FCP preset which defines your workflow settings using ProRes
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    Transcode EVERYTHING into ProRes before using it in your projects (that is what Treet's "Edit Ready" files are all about)
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* Transcode ''everything'' into ProRes before using it in your projects (that is what Treet's "Edit Ready" files are all about)
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    Transcode all results using Compressor for finals.
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* Transcode all results using Compressor for finals.
This method assure that FCP will never have problems, never crash, never render when you don't want it to, and that no project you're ever working on will contain surprises and unexpected video flaws.
This method assure that FCP will never have problems, never crash, never render when you don't want it to, and that no project you're ever working on will contain surprises and unexpected video flaws.
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== Final Cut Pro Settings ==
== Final Cut Pro Settings ==
[[File:FCP-Sequence-Preset-Editor.png]]
[[File:FCP-Sequence-Preset-Editor.png]]
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Once you've completed this pane, click the "Video Processing" tab and select "Render in 8-bit YUV", Process Maximum White as: "White", and Motion Filtering Quality: "Normal":
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[[File:VideoProc.png]]
Then, '''on the "Summary" pane, be sure that your new setting is the default "Sequence Preset"''':
Then, '''on the "Summary" pane, be sure that your new setting is the default "Sequence Preset"''':

Current revision as of 17:37, 29 July 2011

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