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Old May 22nd, 2005, 09:38 AM   #1
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FCP 4.5/XL2 and importing four audio channels

Hello,

I recently purchased a new Canon XL2, and am gradually learning more about the camera and Final Cut Pro (version 4.5). The XL2 has the ability to record four audio channels onto a DV tape (when recorded at 12-bit). I've been able to do that successfully, and now I am trying to find out the easiest way to import all four audio channels into Final Cut Pro.

When creating a Capture Preset, there is an option under "QuickTime Audio Settings" to set input to "First 2 channels," "Second 2 channels," or "Mix 4 channels."

Depending on what I've set that to, I can control which set of two channels (out of the four) is captured when I import the video from the XL2 into FCP. However, I don't want to mix the 4 channels into 2, as I would like the ability to edit the audio channels separately and adjust the mix in FCP. It appears the only way I can import the four channels in as separate channels is to first import the video/audio from the first 2 channels, then import the video/audio from the second 2 channels, and then extract the audio from one of the two imports to paste into the timeline (hopefully lining it up correctly so it's in sync).

Is that really the only possible workflow? I'd like to simply import four separate audio channels at the same time as I import the video, but I can't see anything in FCP that allows that. (If it really doesn't allow that, is it due to a bandwidth issue on FireWire or something like that?)

Thanks for any guidance. (I'm still kind of new to all of this, as you can tell!)

- Scott
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Old May 30th, 2005, 02:18 PM   #2
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Sorry this thread is pretty cold by now.

And I don't even have any positive feedback to offer, unfortunately. I wish that FCP would have the ability to import all four channels of audio on separate tracks. But it doesn't. What adds to the dilemma, is that there is no third party software for Mac that does this, either. There are several Windows based apps. that digitize the second stereo pair simultaneously as a .wav file.

But we Mac users are out of luck. It's funny because FCP is often advertised with the Canon XL-1, which would suggest that they would be very compatible.

I capture the second stereo pair in a second "audio only" capture pass.

The problem may be a Quicktime fault. But I don't know.
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Old May 30th, 2005, 05:15 PM   #3
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Fortunately, Quicktime 7 and Final Cut Pro 5 solve this problem by allowing capture of up to 24 simultaneous audio tracks. Unfortunately, FCP5 isn't out yet. For now you'll have to capture everything with two passes (two channels per pass), but shouldn't have to after upgrading.
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Old June 11th, 2005, 05:17 PM   #4
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Hello,

I started this thread, and wanted to provide an update.

I just received my upgrade to Final Cut Studio yesterday (and whoah, talk about a big box with heavy manuals!), and a quick glance at Final Cut Pro 5 doesn't show a solution to this problem, unless I'm missing something..

If I go to Capture Presets and modify a new preset, under QuickTime Audio Settings, when I set "DV Audio" as the input device, the Input menu (still) has the following options:

First 2 channels
Second 2 channels
Mix 4 channels

Unless there's an option hiding somewhere else, I still don't see a way to get FCP to capture the four channels as four separate audio tracks in one pass.

Nicholi: I do see Apple claiming the following feature, which you referenced:

"Capture and output up to 24 channels of high resolution 24-bit, 96kHz audio in a single pass with Final Cut Pro 5."

But is this referring to some different capturing option (e.g., through some type of external device)? I'm not sure that feature bullet meshes with the XL2, unfortunately -- but I'd be happy if someone can prove me wrong!

Thanks,

- Scott
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Old June 30th, 2005, 03:53 PM   #5
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Hi Scott and others,

I just got my FCP5 Studio up and running. I have to corroborate Scott's findings. I have not found any new feature that would enable one to capture all four tracks of audio at once.

As a matter of fact as far as I can tell it is now even harder to capture the second stereo pair. Apparently there is no longer a menu in the log and capture, clip - adjustment window to switch between first, second, and mix like in FCP4.

I wonder why Apple changed that.! I can't imagine that this little imperfect function was irritating anyone, even if only a very few people found that function to be at all useful.

I guess I won't be shooting 4 channel anymore for a while.

I must be missing something.

The audio capture part of the log and capture window offers 2 to 24 input channels, but oddly enough, only when there is no DV device connected.
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Last edited by Daniel Kohl; June 30th, 2005 at 05:10 PM.
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Old June 30th, 2005, 05:09 PM   #6
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Okay,

I have calmed down now.

I checked the FCP5 manual(s) and found the way to get FCP5 to capture the second channel pair like FCP4 did.

At least that!

The manual also clearly states that FCP5 can only capture two audio channels from DV tape at a time.

So that ends this thread, I guess.
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Old December 29th, 2006, 09:23 PM   #7
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Sorry to revive this thread, but I'm trying to figure out how to do this as well.

I got the XL2 to record 3 separate channels like I want, but FCP5 will only capture the first two.

How did you do this?

Thanks
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Old December 29th, 2006, 10:31 PM   #8
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Hi Chris, I answered this in your other query in the XL2 forum. For convenience, but since its more of a software question than an XL2 question, I will cut&paste it here;

Typically, you will need to capture the 2nd two channels via a 2nd pass capture although you can do just the audio and drop it in. Or you can also do it using QT 7 "new audio recording" configured to dv cam firwire input for 2nd 2 channels, or any other number of audio recording apps - but either way, you will need to do it via a 2nd pass on the Mac. Using a search function in these forums will yield a bunch of posts on the topic. Some of them are fairly detailed depending upon the app of choice. There are also a few posts that state someone has figured out a way to do it. You can ignore those as they are mistaken. Some of those posters have figured out that you can capture the 4 channel mix, no problem, but they are not separated into 4 channels of audio. They still mixdown in the capture with 1 & 3 combined, and 2 & 4 combinedt o 2 track stereo.

Go for a 2nd pass audio capture either in FCP or QT 7.
-Jon
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Old December 30th, 2006, 09:10 AM   #9
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Hi Chris,

I don't have access to my FCP5 at the moment so I can't step you threw the process. But if I remeber correctly, you can change which sterio pair you want to capture (1+2 or 3+4) in the Capture Presets... I just looked back, M. Scott Smith's entry covers it pritty well. And Jonathan Jones is right, you will still have to capture the 3rd channel with an extra capture pass "Second 2 channels" in capture presets in FCP5, by using QT7.

Cheers,
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