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Old June 26th, 2008, 09:49 PM   #16
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For those editing on Avid and audio sweetening then Pro Tools LE makes a lot more sense. ProTools will open your Avid timeline directly. For SoundForge you could try exporting an OMF (audio only, linked to timeline). I'm not sure which verions of SoundForge support OMF if any. OMF is like AAF whihc Avid also supports for export - these are metadata formats that can also carry the media within their file structure. I would suggest downloading the demo version of ProTools before anyone bought one - I don't use it on a regular basis.

Instead I do as much as I can within the Media Composer (and Xpress Pro) interfaces. You have a bunch of reasonably sophisiticated tools for audio including the legacy AudioEQ whihc is fairly limited but allows you to basic EQ and the more sophisticated AudioSuite which includes some very handy filters lifted from ProTools - including speedchange with pitch adjustment, 4 band EQ, Reverb etc...

These will never take the place of an audio program - for a start you can only get down to frame resolution rather than hundredths of a second, but it may help for many quality issues.

HTH..
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Old June 27th, 2008, 02:23 AM   #17
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John, this is probably a really stupid ?, but I've never used Pro Tools. Can LE open MXF projects or does the source media have to be OMF? Thanks.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 07:23 AM   #18
 
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FWIW, I dislike pro-tools. It's extremely cumbersome and user unfriendly. I use Tracktion as my DAW, or even Vegas.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 01:00 PM   #19
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Throws Hands Up In The Air!

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FWIW, I dislike pro-tools. It's extremely cumbersome and user unfriendly. I use Tracktion as my DAW, or even Vegas.
Your reasoning Bill is why I don't even want to consider ProTools. I already have a full plate as it is - even without my learning the basics of Media Composer in what little spar time I have.

But audio is critical from what I have learned so far and want to use my existing tools since I already have a pretty good grasp of how they work. From what I can tell, Sound Forge can't open AAF or OMf files, so that isn't looking too promising. Audition is the same. And my understanding is - OMF is an antiquated way of dealing with audio, instead AAF being more acceptable - this is what I have read up to this point and willing to be corrected if needed.

Seems like alot of hoops to jump through to work with Avid - it's beginning to make me reconsider going any further with it - expensive and not as seamless for a one person shop.

I may consider the Cineform route for Vegas Pro - About tho throw my hands up in the air and just stick with Vegas Pro and deal with it's glitches. At least I know what to expect so far with it. Then again, maybe I"ll just get a bloody mac mini and Final Cut Express and work my way through that route - at least I'd have a mac to edit basic projects on and I'd learn how the Final Cut methodology works.

Must be friday...
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Old June 27th, 2008, 02:39 PM   #20
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2 pops, since 1929..

As a standard practice I always do the following:

Put a 1 frame audio beep (or any high pitch sound) exactly 2 seconds before your first frame on your timeline on all audio tracks. The export those tracks into wave file. Make sure you stay consistent with sample rate. Put a 1 frame flash on your video track. Export to AVI or Quicktime. The 2 pop is a safety for maintaining sync.

Then you can take this into any audio program you want. Pro Tools, Sound Forge, Audition, etc. This is how they've been syncing tracks for more than 75 years.

Pro Tools is not for the faint at heart but is used by the vast majority of sound shops. It does way more (like syncing mid tracks) than most people need.

I hope this helps, David
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Old June 27th, 2008, 02:55 PM   #21
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David - thanks for your hints on Avid workflow.

I guess my reasoning behind all this is there is the one camp that states, "This is the way it has been done - why change?" Yet from someone on the outside looking in - it seems inefficient for the one man band. In contrast, when you look at an app like Vegas Pro - what the specs say it can do is very forward thinking in an NLE workflow - and when it works - it is VERY efficient for the kind of work I do. All work is done on one timeline - video editing, audio work, titling and color correction. It's not perfect, but it has been an interesting workflow to experience first hand - especially when needing to do quick edits under short deadlines.

Maybe I'm still not seeing the overall reasoning behind Avid's (OFTM - Apple's or Adobe's) way of doing things other than it established itself in Hollywood early on and so is deeply entrenched in how things are done - separate apps performing a specific function done by a specialist. The way media is consumed now, it appears very monolithic and inefficient. Something inside me says why does it have to be so? Or is it the fact that Vegas has been over sold and simply can't handle serious editing sessions without puking?

This is what I'm trying find answers to.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 04:05 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Cliff Etzel View Post

...inefficient for the one man band. In contrast, when you look at an app like Vegas Pro - what the specs say it can do is very forward thinking in an NLE workflow - and when it works - it is VERY efficient for the kind of work I do.

This is what I'm trying find answers to.
I think think you've answered your own question. If Vegas works for you as a one man shop, it doesn't make you any less of an editor as someone on Avid, FCP, or Adobe PPro.

In all honesty it is pretty simple, you edit, make deadlines, and bill the client. Go with what works for you. I think all too often editors are looking for some sort of vindication that they're editing on a better platform than others. As long as your clients are happy then you're a success.

So Avid is probably not for you. No big deal.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 04:18 PM   #23
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I second Davids remarks. Find the solution that works for you, allows you to achieve your goals quickly, efficiently and keeps the client happy. Whichever NLE meets those needs.

Don't get caught up in a 'pissing contest'.

Each APP came out of a specific skillset that was generated by industry needs. AVID was developed for cutting FILM. It had to deal with HUGE piles of media, and had to generate frame accurate CUT LISTS for negative cutters. This is the legacy of AVID - just as the legacy of VEGAS is an audio tool background. Not good or bad, just something to understand and acknowledge.

In the AVID workflow world - IE:Studio and Brodcast - people in one room are working on the audio, people in another the effects, people in this one are cutting the video together. They all need to share and access media, and it needs to work super smoothly. THATS why AVID is designed the way it is. It's not specifically designed to be a 'one man shop' sort of app. That's why FCP got a jump in the mid-range boutiques. So be it. AVID has adapted - too little too late??? Who knows. Certainly if you want to work in STUDIOS then you better know AVID. Want a job in local Ad agency? Best to know Avid AND Final Cut.

But plenty of one-man shops make a decent living with Vegas, or Liquid or Premiere or whatever.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 04:56 PM   #24
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Cliff,

Your first post said that you saw some efficiencies with using Avid. But it seems that as you've gotten more into the program, you're seeing some inefficiencies as well and are reconsidering making the switch.

No problem. Perhaps there are answers to your Vegas problems. Even rolling back to version 7 maybe? It seems that 8 has had more problems than people expected.


Richard,

A friend of mine who's an Avid editor has not been able to find a job here in Studio City once her TV show got canceled. Apparently, quite a few cable TV shows have switched over to FCP. I watched four documentaries two weeks ago. All were made in LA, only one was cut on Avid (it looked the best but also had the biggest budget, BTW). But FCP is making real inroads in Hollywood. The latest crop of people coming out of school are really starting to force the issue for other reasons: FCP editors are now ubiquitious, young and relatively cheap.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 07:11 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cliff Etzel View Post
David - thanks for your hints on Avid workflow.

I.
2 pops were around long before Avid. This is an approach regardless of your platform.
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Old July 1st, 2008, 09:42 PM   #26
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Quote:
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2 pops were around long before Avid. This is an approach regardless of your platform.
David - I have run into one problem using this method. Because Avid cannot nudge audio at a sub-frame level, you will often find audio can be out by as much half a frame when going to and from audio suites (especially if they run stuff through an analogue mixer). If you control the process it's probably not an issue. In my case, I found returning the file as a broadcast wav solved the problem.

A lot of audio programs out there support OMF wrapped audio - this is a much easier way of getting say 8 synced audio tracks from Avid into your preferred audio program. OMF doesn't support MXF audio, but I'm pretty sure the export module allows you to transcode to wav on the fly.

I would only suggest learning ProTools if you have a lot of time on your hands.
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Old July 2nd, 2008, 09:57 AM   #27
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2 pops anyway

John,

I don't disagree with you that OMF is a tighter and less cumbersome (for multiple tracks) export than just wave. But every audio house I have worked with likes the 2pops anyway for safety on sync. Also now Avid 3.0 supports broadcast wave format with time stamp data which gives tracks everything back to the original source if you record in BWF. On OMF, sometimes I've had issues going to Pro Tools LE that doesn't have the Digitranslator plug. (Digidesign's gotcha plug in), but use OMF with 2 pops. I was just stating that 2pops allow you to go into anything including older legacy audio programs like Sound Forge or older versions of Pro Tools. which don't support OMF. It is a good work around that has served me well.

And in my opinion, is anyone going to notice if your final mix is a subframe, 1/50th to 1/100th of a second off in sync?? I doubt it.

Cheers.
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Old July 3rd, 2008, 02:54 AM   #28
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FWIW I've seen some diabolical lip sync that is only out 1/50th second.

I was just pointing out the OMF and AAF export methods for those not familiar with them. Just so they know there is an easier way than exporting 4 - 8 stereo pairs of wavs :) BTW there is a bug in the current release on OMF export of audio from an MXF project... in some instances the export will convert all the clips and then fail and ask you to use AAF export. In previous releases, audio was correctly converted to wav for OMF export (provided you selected that option in the export module)

I always put a full countdown on all my audio exports for sync purposes anyway. I like broadcast wave as a return format and it seems to work fine from OMF exports (ie it preserves the original timestamps) and gets you back perfectly in sync.

The other problems I've observed with audio export and return are drift (when an audio house works at a slightly different sample rate to you) audio can drift out of sync over longer clips so everyone should keep an eye out for that one.

This is not specific to Avid, just general audio sync issues all editors should be on the lookout for.
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Old July 4th, 2008, 09:00 AM   #29
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Vegas Pro 8 having a Hissy fit

I'm still debating the switch from Vegas Pro 8 to...?

All of a sudden, the same project I had been editing came to a crawl for no apparent reason - nothing had been done other than closing the project and opening it the next day - now the project crawls and this is with clips and titles only.

An uninstall and reinstall didn't matter - so, with an Acronis backup image of a virgin install of XP and all my other apps, I was able to reinstall without having to spend hours installing them one by one. But the project is still sluggish - Whiskey Tango Foxtrot????

Problem is - this is an ongoing issue now for Vegas Pro 8 - one moment it works fine, the next, it's throwing a temper tantrum - I've about hit my limit with the program. I'm losing money on this edit and none too happy about it - but I can't seem to come to a firm decision on whether to go Avid or Adobe. My needs are straight forward as listed earlier:
  • Cuts
  • Dissolves
  • Basic Titling
  • Color Correction
  • Ability to edit audio with apps other than ProTools
My BIGGEST concern still is audio editing integration for using tools like Noise Reduction filters, EQ, etc. Not trying to be dense, but I'm still not grasping the concept of how to work with audio in other tools that aren't Avid's.

Other than the occasional DVD being burned, having that integrated isn't a show stopper for me. I want to use the tools I already have and just get a stable NLE app.

Also - the one thing that is in Avid's favor is that I work with x64 XP Pro on both my desktop and laptop and from what I've learned, Media Composer 3.0 will install and run on that OS version - and be able to utilize more RAM as compared to PPro.
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Old July 4th, 2008, 11:29 AM   #30
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Cliff,
Describe your typical workflow as far as audio sweeting goes. What is it you are likely to do with audio, once you have cut a piece together. (DO you wait untill the cut is done, and then work on your audio?)

Hard to recommend your best course of action at this point. I hate to even UPGRADE a system when I'm in the middle of a project, let alone change NLE's - so I'd be tempted to say work through what you got on Vegas till this project is done.
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