Video Variations

Quite the puzzle; the last little bit. After getting my iMac back in November, I had to refigure the best way of taking vids from my consumer model still camera and getting them YouTube ready. Hassle. Apples don’t like MPEGs, so I had to figure the loop-de-loops to get MPEG to MOV to MPEG, so I could edit, et cetera. iMovie is virtually impossible to use. I dicked around with MovieMaker on my old laptop and it did the job. Now, I’ve got to save the MPEG from my camera, convert it to MOV using MPEG Streamclip, edit in Final Cut Pro, and buy DivX for Mac just to get an optimized file for YouTube.

It says something when FCP is easier to use than iMovie. I had some vids from the Red Black and Green Christmas show at the Grog Shop, but the quality was poor, as my camera sucks in low light. I put together this collection of clips from when I was at the Pittsburgh Zoo instead.

3 thoughts on “Video Variations

  1. Hi Adam,
    The zoo clips look great. Nice grain free blacks.
    Any version (except 1) of imovie before the 08 revamp is much more full featured than the 08 version except that the 08 expands it’s support of the MPEG-2, MPEG-4 and AVCHD codecs. For whatever reason Apple really severely streamlined the app. Disclaimer; I’ve never used it but have read from people I respect that it has its merits.
    I started NL editing using imovie back in 1999 and thought it was awesome for about a minute until I realized what a hassle it was to split the audio from the video. (That hassle got eliminated in later versions.) I managed to edit two or three projects with it until I got a copy of Premier and then FCP. You’re right about FCP being easier but I think that applies to people who are used to using professional apps. The average person just wants to plug in the footage and send it to their social video site of choice.
    I’ll still use imovie when I’m not on my FCP licensed computer. It gets on my nerves but it works for simple stuff. BTW do a search on youtube for tutorials on how to compress a movie for youtube using imovie or FCP. I’ve learned that you can upload H.264 compressed video with success. 2000 kbps. I’ve used it with success.
    You might want to try using the color corrector filter in FCP on the Grog Shop footage. Play with the mid tone slider.
    Divx does rule and I use it 99% of the time. Probably because once I found something that worked…

  2. Thanks for the feedback, Andy. I tried dicking around with the color corrector, but I think the problem stems from the fact that I’m using a Sony DSCN-1 for video in low light. The camera just wasn’t designed for that kind of use. The color corrector and brightness and contrast adjustments don’t change anything apart from making the video look overexposed where there actually is data. I think that’s why the black look so good, there is literally no visual data in those areas.

  3. If there’s no data in the blacks well then there’s no data. By using the filter if you can at get at least a little detail in the blacks you can play with the highlight slider to keep the highlights from blowing out. Or bring a light kit to the next show 🙂

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