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Old August 25th, 2006, 09:30 AM   #1
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FCP 4.5 NO Real Time !

2 days left to finish a short before it screens at a festival.

The editor is using the same laptop and external firewire drive he has long used but now FCP4.5 is rendering every single edit. Simply moving a single clip with no filters on the timeline on a track requires rendering!

The footage is standard DV in 16:9 aspect ratio.

I've only used Premiere and Canopus Edius - I have no experience with FCP. When I ask the editor to see his project settings to make sure they match the clip footage, I am told FCP does not have Project Settings - there are Preferences and the Timeline settings and these are set when you chose the Presets in the Capture tab. The Capture tab settings correctly show "DV/DVCPro and 16:9 anamorphic.

This is the editor's first time to cut a 16:9 project with his FCP. I just get the feeling that the project settings ( which he claims FCP does not have) are set wrong for the clips and it has to render the clip footage that is different from what the timeline is set for.

Any ideas you Mac FCP guys?

I should also add that the captured video clips on the timeline are sitting on an external firewire drive - the editor says that is always how he's done it and never had this render every timeline change problem.

Last edited by John Richard; August 25th, 2006 at 10:21 AM.
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Old August 25th, 2006, 10:24 AM   #2
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You can need to render if there's a mismatch between the *sequence* settings and the media.

1- Sequence settings: To access this, right click your sequence in the browser, and go to sequence settings.

2- Anamorphic: I don't fully quite get the logic of FCP in this, but basically what ends up happening is that:
A- Your canvas will either be displayed squeezed or unsqueezed. This depends on sequence settings.
B- When you drop your clips into the sequence, they will either have no distort (under motion controls) or they will be distorted to letterbox or pillarbox. If you want something else, you can paste attributes around, manually change the distort setting, or remove any effect on the clip by right/crtl+click and then going remove attributes.

3- So try remove the attributes on one of your clips... see if it needs rendering.

4- I think if you have 24p clips in a 29.97 interlaced timeline, they will need rendering. 24p clips can be created when you remove advanced pulldown from DVX footage (this can be done during capture, or afterwards). My memory gets hazy here.

5- If you load up one of the easy presets *and* do a test capture and drop that test clip into a new sequence, it shouldn't need rendering.

6- Dont capture with iMovie or you'll get a rendering problem.
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Old August 25th, 2006, 10:35 AM   #3
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Thank YOU Chan.
The footage is standard DV, 29.97 NTSC from a Canon XLH1.

Just spoke to the editor and when he goes into his sequence settings and changes the tick box for the 16:9 Anamorphic, the playback of clips on the timeline become squished.
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Old August 25th, 2006, 11:02 AM   #4
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Tell him to select all the clips and then go to edit-remove attributes and check the distort check box, this should remove the squishiness from the clips ;-)
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Old August 25th, 2006, 11:21 AM   #5
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Thank you Nate!

I am headed over to where they are editing now with these invaluable suggestions.

Thank you all so much for your help!
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Old August 28th, 2006, 11:21 AM   #6
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Ok folks - here's the results of what finally occured....

We used everyone's recommendations about checking the file properties in the bin and "sequence settings" (what Edius and Premiere call "Project Settings) to look for a mismatch. All the footage off my Canon H1 were correctly captured as DV and Anamorphic (FCP4.5 way of saying 16:9). When the editor went to his sequence settings, it appeared that early on that he may have not checked off the "Anamorphic" tick box; but when he did enable this anamorphic box, all the clips on the timeline went to 4:3 squished distortion in the player window.

Solution - using Nate's guidance above, went to the menu in FCP that had a "Distort" check box - you highlight all the clips on the timeline and then tick the Distort check box and wham... everything properly displayed in 16:9 correctly.

How wierd is that? THANK YOU NATE & DVInfo Forums !!!!!!!

Then, Saturday night (the film premiered on Sunday night), the editor's Mac began freezing and finally crashed dead! Luckily we had everything backed up to an external firewire drive and we tracked someone else at the festival who had a Mac and FCP5 on it who loaned it to us. Jeese!

Well the editor and director where waaaay behind now - about an hour-and-a-half before show time (no time to make a DVD) I asked the editor to test the plan of play the show from tape by recording about 2 minutes back to tape on the deck so I could take the test tape to one of the Barco projection theaters to test it....
No output to my deck (DSR20)... then we tried a DV camera - no output to the camera.

#Q$& !

Last ditch effort was to take the mini-Mac we were down to and try and play it off the laptop thru the S-Video and stereo outputs off the laptop.... still no output.
1/2 hr before deadline, one of the A/V guys was familiar with FCP and found that "Export>ALL FRAMES" was not checked - he ticked that box and bam - there was our show on a 30 foot screen. How freakin' lucky was that!

The 18 min. comedy played to an audience starved for entertainment after a festival of social redeeming films - they loved it.

Lessons learned for short deadline projects - 1)don't take no for an answer - insist on a short test of the total workflow with the exact equipment to be used. 2) try to have a backup editing system that is compatible with the starting system to be prepared for a crash. 3) write down a Time Budget that all agree on 4) (for me personally) any post technical or editorial involvement - stay away from a Mac/FCP unless you thoroughly know it - don't get sucked into trying to help without a huge supply of Tums
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Old August 28th, 2006, 12:45 PM   #7
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Glad it all worked out for you!
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