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Old November 25th, 2011, 01:15 PM   #1
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Usefulness of Video Effect Plug-ins (Bundles)

Hello -

I received email notice from two different companies that sell video plug-ins about "Black Friday" deals on their products. Considering the apparent savings, I'm considering purchasing one of the plug-in BUNDLES from one of the companies. Basically, the "Bundle" from one company seems to include everything "under the sun" from video effects to titlers. This particular "bundle" includes support for both current versions of FCP (I have FCP 7, not the new "X") and Adobe's Premiere/After Effects which I own.

Here are my questions. . .

Any video plug-ins that I use are usually from the program itself (color correction, effects, etc.) However, I do own a Keying plug-in from another company which I find better than the one found in FCP. Generally speaking, how much "better" in terms of quality are the plug-ins from "outside" companies (like Boris)??

These "Black Friday" deals seem to offer significant savings. Still, I would be dropping nearly $1,000 for the "bundled" video plug-ins (purchased from either of the companies offering this particular sale). Thinking "Boris" or "Red Giant", are there effects found in these "bundles" worth having, that the effects the bundle(s) offer are simply not produceable, that the bundled effects are simply not found from either FCP/Motion and Premiere/After Effects???????

How reputable are either the Boris and Red Giant video plug-ins??

Who EXTENSIVELY uses video plug-ins from "outside" companies (other than the plug-ins found within the editing software itself)???

Thank you in advance. . . :)

Edited to add: Admittedly, I enjoy using the effects that come supplied with the editing software. I enjoy the extra work that using the "supplied" effect plug-ins have to offer when creating more "interesting" video effects. I guess I am more interested in investing money in something that offer additional choices in video editing and effect making that the actual editing software does NOT offer.

Ted
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Last edited by Ed Fiebke; November 25th, 2011 at 03:36 PM.
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Old November 25th, 2011, 05:18 PM   #2
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Re: Usefulness of Video Effect Plug-ins (Bundles)

Hi Ed. Both Boris and Red Giant are highly respected companies. I can't speak for FCP/Motion (I'm an Adobe boy) but basically whether the bundles are good value for you depends on what you want to do. The plugins from Red Giant that I know and which give you additional things that you won't be able to achieve in your standard program (After Effects in my case) are Trapcode Particular (a pretty standard buy for many 'serious' particle creators) and 3D Stroke. Trapcode Form is widely used (and you see it everywhere at the moment) but most of what it does can be achieved with Particular though with more difficulty. Trapcode Sound Keys is useful if you want to link effects with sound/music, and Trapcode Shine and Starglow are similar in that you can achieve the effects other ways but with more difficulty. Mmmmm, reading what I've written I think I'm suggesting that you might want to look at a Trapcode bundle - but again only if they are something that you will use and need. I don't use any Boris plugins (though they seem to be highly regarded) nor do I use Magic Bullet Looks, but again a lot of people do (I'm happier doing my own colour work). Trust that helps.
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Old November 25th, 2011, 07:21 PM   #3
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Re: Usefulness of Video Effect Plug-ins (Bundles)

Red Giant stuff rocks! I own most of their products (Trapcode, Magic Bullet, Keyer Suite) I also have Boris Continuum Complete, Natress, CHV, and several other "bundles". All mentioned by Gregory are good and another pair of standouts in my mind are Colorista II and Cosmo which are part of the Magic Bullet suite. Colorista II is way more powerful than the stock color correction in PP or FCP and a heck of a lot simpler than Apple's Color. Cosmo is wonderful for touching up people with "digital makeup". Been using it to soften the look of skin without losing detail in eyes and hair. Also can shift skin tone which can be handy.
I find having a large palate of tools expands my creativity and allows me to do things that would be next to impossible without the plugins. Knowing how to get the most out of each plugin is the trick and I have yet to master some of the more complex plugins like Trapcode's Form. The presets only take you so far.
At first you will overuse whatever plugin set you get but once the novelty wears off, more tasteful uses will start to emerge. Thats when you can really start honing in on your style of editing.

GenArts is another company I may pick up at some point. Really nice looking stuff but a bit pricey.
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Old November 26th, 2011, 08:08 AM   #4
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Re: Usefulness of Video Effect Plug-ins (Bundles)

Gregory and Robert -

Thank you, both, for your thoughtful responses. I went ahead and purchased the bundle from Boris. I've had a good experience with two of their products in the past (Optical Stabilizer and Chroma Keyer).

The activation process is a bit of a pain. (Maybe I should have read the directions BEFORE making the purchase?!?!?) This is a "box set" purchase. Apparently, one has to download each plug-in as a "trial" before making the purchase to help ensure proper activation. I'm confused. But the "Trial Versions" are functional for 15 days and I hope to have the activation process finished by the end of the trial period.

Regarding the plug-ins (based on the trial versions). . . They most certainly add some new and interesting effects. Usually, I'm not a heavy effect user. (I'm the same way with my music compositions which are mostly orchestral in nature.) BUT. . . it is nice to have these additional tools available.

Again, thank you for your responses. . .

Ed
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Old November 26th, 2011, 09:11 AM   #5
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Re: Usefulness of Video Effect Plug-ins (Bundles)

LOL!!
There is no such thing as an easy to install plugin bundle!!
The Red Giant stuff has to be installed and registered one plugin at a time!
Should have seen my IK audio plugins! I had to call tech support!
Anyhow, enjoy the purchase and use tastefully!
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Old November 26th, 2011, 10:26 AM   #6
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Re: Usefulness of Video Effect Plug-ins (Bundles)

You are soooo correct! Installing bundles plug-ins is more than a bit time consuming, and most certainly is nerve wracking! LOL!

BUT. . . all is well! One of the tech-support people from Boris was VERY helpful with this process. It seems that all of the bundled plug-ins are activated and working as intended.

And with regards to taste?!?!? LOL! I have a deep affection for the "off-color" and absurd! LOL! (It's the "dark" humor that I have from working 20+ years in healthcare as a nurse! LOTS of bedpan and urinal handling! LOL!) With all of these neat effects, it's tempting to "over kill" the video stuff just for the laughs and stress-relief!! LOL! STILL. . . . I also am a deep believer in the "A Little Bit Goes a Long Way". So, hopefully I can restrain myself from editing in lots of stuff. . . and simply let the topic of the video speak for itself.

Cheers! :)

Ed
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