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Old February 14th, 2011, 12:44 PM   #1
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Help capturing video and audio using Macbook Pro and FCP

Again... I'm a rookie sorry. I've got a gig coming up on the 26th. I committed to doing it for free just cause I'm trying to build a portfolio and the dude's helped me out a TON and will be paying me to do editing/shooting for other events (I've already got at least 2 dates for paying gigs!!!) However... I don't have my good camera yet, and the buddy I have with the camera won't work for free (don't blame him 1 bit.) I've got a Sony Handycam DCR SR82 which though not ideal does do an ok job for the application I need it for which is taping a 3 hour seminar. Problem is, that the camera is VERY limited in it's functionality/ports. I need to use a wireless lavaliere mic cause my cameras mic sucks and the speaker walks around a lot. The camera though doesn't have any microphone connection except for the Active Shoe thing on the top. I'm thinking I can borrow the Mic set from my church to record, my question is, can I get something like an xlr-1/8th inch cable running right into my Macbook Pro's mic jack and record the audio that way then run a cable to the camera for the video capture so they are synced to each other?

Next question... what's the cheapest way to get the video from that camera to my computer. Specs say it's got S-video and USB2 but both of those are in the dock, I can't shoot from the dock. All I've got the ability to do is use the AV cable that can plug into the camera with some weird little port. Any cheep way to go from AV into either Firewire800 USB or Ethernet?

I know these are all ghetto solutions to non-ghetto problems, but I'm racking my brain on how to make this all work without having to drop a $100 for the day to rent a camera. I know it's spending towards my future, but that's money I'm not getting back.

Thanks.
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Old February 14th, 2011, 06:06 PM   #2
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Any solution I could come up with would cost more than the $100 rental - there is a bare minimum amount of gear required to do what you want to do and it's at least $100.

If the guy offering you promises of paid work isn't willing to fork out on this occassion for at least basic costs, not sure whether I'd trust those future dates. If you do trust him, then fork out for the rental.

A make shift solution will cost you a lot more than $100 in good will and missed work if it fails on you.
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Old February 14th, 2011, 08:11 PM   #3
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I agree with you most the time about payment. In this situation, it's a free event he's doing so there's no $ for him either. The other gigs he's getting paid for or i'll be paid by his company. I'm in a scary situation where my "business" has outgrown me. I'm not in a situation yet to buy the gear yet i need the gear for the gigs:-( I had hoped that I could just edit for a while and save to get he camera, tripod, media, and mic. They need me to shoot though. it's a long interesting story of how this has all gone down. Thanks for your help. I'll talk to my buddy with the camera and see what kind of deal he'll cut me on renting it for a few hours. Maybe that'll be the best bet.
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Old February 15th, 2011, 07:29 AM   #4
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Here's what to do (if you decide it's all worth it):

There is nothing that will not cost you money if you want to record wireless audio into the camera. Sony makes a cheap wireless mike system that only hooks into the Active Shoe port, you can't use it anywhere else. A friend of mine has one and it's very limited in quality and broadcast distance. It's made for classroom, seminar and home video recording. Why Sony doesn't make a mike jack that hooks into the Active Shoe, I don't know.

Now what you can do is hook the church's mike set directly into your laptop and record the audio using free software like Audacity. When editing, you can sync the audio easily if you get the speaker to clap their hands before starting and you don't stop the camera or audio recording until the event is finished (or you repeat the process after a break).
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Old February 15th, 2011, 08:49 AM   #5
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William

Wow, didn't think of that... Sounds just ghetto enough to work :-) I'll screw around with it and see if I can get it to work before I get there and botch it up. That's super easy though.

Don't give up on me yet guys, I'll have some proper gear in 6 months or so. :-)

Thanks!
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Old February 16th, 2011, 10:27 AM   #6
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Paul, I think William's suggestion is probably the best for you. But if you really feel like you are going to have enough paying gigs coming up to pay the bills, then I would go get a small biz loan or a credit card at the least and start buying things you need.

I would NOT get a small biz loan as I am no where near being able to fully support myself on my business YET. I do have 3 more paying gigs coming up but they are not gonna be able to pay the bills for the rest of the year. And seeing how spotty this biz can be...I already have a HVX200 and a proper edit system. We rent audio equip and lights and sometimes a gaffer.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 04:43 PM   #7
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Re: Help capturing video and audio using Macbook Pro and FCP

I'm all set to record tomorrow. Everything works! What's the best format to record the audio into for a FCP video? WAV? MP4...?

Thanks!
Paul
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Old February 25th, 2011, 04:59 PM   #8
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Re: Help capturing video and audio using Macbook Pro and FCP

WAV is good, AIFF is better. No real quality difference, just that FCP likes AIFFs better. MP3, MP4, AAC, avoid these for recording.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 09:33 PM   #9
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Re: Help capturing video and audio using Macbook Pro and FCP

Thanks William. I really appreciate your help on this.

Paul
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Old February 27th, 2011, 10:00 AM   #10
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Re: Help capturing video and audio using Macbook Pro and FCP

AIFF 16-bit / 48khz. This will drop into to Final Cut without having to render. Good luck.
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