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Old June 9th, 2007, 09:11 AM   #1
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Multi Cam Work Flow Productivity

Hey Guys, is there any faster way for me to Multi Cam edit in FCP 5 using a Mac Min (power pc)?

Video/Audio Equipment: VX2100 with Soundboard audio, VX2100 with Wireless Microphone audio, two HC3 Cams with camera audio (throw out the audio after the sync), R-09 back up audio from soundboard.

1) Log and batch capture each tape. (I'm still getting what I call dropped frames where several frames freeze and stick together- finding them is like looking for a needle in a hay stack).

2) Try to sync the four cameras in a sequence, stacking them in the time line, looking for common camera flashes, audio sounds, peformer movements.

3) Because of the the dropped frames/glitches, I have to listen with the headphones on to hear if the audio is shifting, and if I do, I start looking at each camera in the time line for the glitch. Find it and move the video and audio accordingly while filling in the gaps with slugs.

4) Once I'm convinced all four cameras are in sync from beginning to end with the slugs placed in the gaps, I create one audio track by deleting the two HC3 camera audio tracks that sound terrible and using the sound tracks from the two VX2100s and the R-09 wav. I then export this sound track as an Aif grouped and import back into FCP as an Aif.

5) I do color correction on each camera in the sequence starting from top to bottom, blinking it out afterwards to do the next camera under it, and so on until I've color corrected each camera.

Keep in mind, the color correction is heavy because I'm doing mostly ballet recitals and plays with crazy continuous lighting changes. Its not a wedding where the lighting stays constant.

6) I create a new sequence. Copy Video Track four and the Aif to it. I render it. Export it to quicktime. I do this for all four cameras so that each camera has the same sound track. (I know that in multi cam editing, I should be able to choose one soundtrack but on my mac mini, it seems to bounce around and when I choose cam 4, I get cam 4's audio instead of cam 1's audio.).

7) I import the four new quicktime files and use them for multi cam editing as they're all the same length and share the same sound track.

Man, this takes a long time. I realize I'm color correcting segments that may never be used, but it seems like trying to color correct it after I've created a multicam sequence would be even tougher because there would be so many segments from going back and forth between four cameras.

Rendering time for each camera can take up to two hours before I export it to QuickTime.

I'm wondering if I'm wasting a whole day or even more doing it the way I am?

-Scott
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Old June 10th, 2007, 10:04 PM   #2
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Multicam work flow

Scott,

I think you have a couple of step you can get rid of that would save you a lot of time.
1) log & capture problems. Drop frames are probably from either too slow hard drive or from tape heads that need cleaning. Cleaning tape much cheaper than G-Raid hard drive. I use a lacie D2 500gb drive and have no problems (FW800 though)

2) Right on. I usually line up the first sound of the song (I do about 40 dance recitals each spring)

3) No need to fill with slugs. Just let the empty space be there.

4) Here is a wasted step see #6

5) Good.

6) OK follow these steps to lock audio to a certain camera angle. First and foremost make sure that your audio and video for your multiclip are locked together. Next double click the multiclip to bring it into the viewer. Once in the viewer you will notice that there is a green square around one of the clips. If no green square your clips are not locked together! If the clip with the green square is not the clip you want the audio source to come from, click on the middle button in the viewer and select video-audio. Then select the clip you want the audio to be locked into and select video from the middle button. This will lock the audio to one clip only rather than bouncing around.

7) Here is your biggest time waste. I know that you can not have multiclips with multiple clips on each video track. Sometimes with a three camera shoot we have to stagger tape changes in the middle of a recital. However there is nothing that says you can't have 5 multiclips on the same video track. Rather than trying to get everything onto one neat track, just add some edit points and make several multiclips then add them to your timline. When you edit you will not know the difference. It will go from one multiclip to the next without a blink. Don't worry about slugs. Just leave the space empty. If you have a dropout, add edit points to your other angles and make a new multiclip starting there. No reason to export and render unused clips.

Hope this helps some. It has taken me a while to get comfortable with the multicam but once you get some workarounds it really is an easy to use and efficient feature.

Jonathan Schwartz
CA Video Productions
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Old June 11th, 2007, 12:54 AM   #3
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Regarding point 1 raised by Mr. Schwartz...that is a definite priority. If you are trying to capture into the internal drive of your Mini, that is most likely your problem. His mention of G-RAIDs or LaCies are quite solid in my opinion.

I learned the hard way a few years ago with my first multicam edit on a laptop, and although I had 2 TB of external LaCie drives running, I started my tape captures (a 7 cam shoot....nearly killed me) and begain getting all sorts of dropped frames (didn't realize it until I tried to line them up and couldn't keep sync). Turns out I had not correctly set my capture drives in FCP preferences...I overlooked it and was capturing to the absolutely slowest, weakest and least roomy drive in my entire system. If you're capturing to your Mini drive, you can probably expect similar results.

I set them correctly, and haven't had sync problems since.

With so much multi-cam editing, I feel your pain, but Mr. Schwartz has laid out some good info.
-Jon
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Old June 13th, 2007, 02:24 PM   #4
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Thanks Johnathons, The dropped frames have been boogers. I've been blaming the cameras. BTW, I am capturing to a 300GB Maxtor Fire Drive, so I don't think that's the problem unless someone knows something bad about Maxtors.

I've had to shoot a lot of LP footage. I know they should be played back in the camera that shot them, but I once had to replace the heads on the VX2100 so I bought a little SonyHC26 to capture from. Ironically it will play both the VX2100 and HC3 LP tapes. BUT I HAVEN'T BEEN CLEANING THE HEADS ON THAT LITTLE CAPTURE CAMERA. DUH!

Mr. Schwartz, I'm still struggling with your step #7 explanation, but I should be capturing a new recital later in the week, so I'll follow it step by step, as I wouldn't mind saving a day.

Thanks
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Old June 13th, 2007, 11:05 PM   #5
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Step 7 revised

Scott,

Let me try this again. I read what I wrote and could not make sense either.
Say you have a 3 camera shoot. Two good shots and one shot with dropouts.
1. Line up all three together
2. Find place where dropouts occur on camera 3
3. Add edit point to camera three (cut clip in two) and re-align second part of camera three with other two good shots.
4. In the timeline, put the playhead at the beginning of the second clip from camera 3 (the edit point you just added)
5. Now add edit points (control-v) for cameras 1 & 2 so all three cameras are starting a new edit point at the same time.
6. now create two separate multiclips, One from the beginning to where the dropped frames occured and a second from where you re-aligned and added new edit points to the other two clips.
7. Put both multiclips together on one timeline.

When you run this, camera 3 will go blank where the dropped frames occured, just make sure to select on of the other 2 shots.

Hope this helps. If not I can tryto say it another way.

Jonathan Schwartz
Owner CA Video Productions
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Old June 14th, 2007, 08:42 AM   #6
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The second explanation sunk in deeper, but before I ask about some specifics, I have to back up to the dropped frame problem.

Does FCP have some kind of dropped frame finder that I'm missing or do the offending frames have to be discovered manually as I'm doing now? Or should I be choosing something more specific in the capture preferences?

Back to your explanation. I'm bothered by the concept of multi-clips. I was under the impression that I could only make multi-clips from the clips in the browser and those clips needed to have the same in-point.

I'm getting confused by your explantion when it comes to the time line. I see splitting a clip to make up for the dropped frames. I'm not familiar with edit points other than ins and outs, so I'll try a Control-V and see what that is. But in your explanation, it sounds like your making multi-clips from the video in the time line instead of the clips in the browser. Is this right?

I understand the concept of doing two multi-clip projects. I just add one finished multi-clip sequence to the other.

Right now in my present project, I have four video tracks (4 cameras) and one audio track in sync with all the video. I color corrected and rendered them together and thats where I am now. I usually export each one of those video tracks with the audio track as a quicktime file and then make multi-clips from them. And that's apparently what I'm trying to avoid.

So can I make multi-clips from this point- from the rendered sequence I've created? I don't think the color changes and renders and edit points I've made in the time line will show up in the browser clips where I usually make the multi-clips. And this is the exact point where I'm having trouble with the concept you've explained to me. I feel like I'm getting closer though!
-Scott
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Old June 15th, 2007, 06:16 AM   #7
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Confusion

Scott,

Sorry about the confusion. Yes edit points mean in and out points. When I am doing color correction, I normally do not render. I just apply the correction then drag the clips to the browser to make a multiclip. The correction will stay. You won't see the correction in the viewer but you will see it in the canvas (sometimes I have to stop playing the timeline for the correction to show up, but it is there). See if this if this works for you. The only time I render is when all transitions and titles are placed. (Make sure to collapse multiclips).

Jonathan Schwartz
Owner, CA Video Productions
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Old June 17th, 2007, 10:15 AM   #8
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Thanks Jonathan, I got a lot farther using your instructions. Now that I've made some progress, a few questions have popped up.

While doing my last recital (the old way), I found a dropped frame in one of the dances that I missed earlier. Three cameras in sync with one ballerina from the fourth camera doing her own thing because of the dropped frame.

I used the in and out points from that dance with all four cameras and put them into their own 4 track sequence.

I found the dropped frame and deleted it. I shifted the video track so that it was in sync with the other cameras. Unfortunately, I razor sliced the audio (and that wasn't neccessary for this situation) Basically I turned that one single clip into two video clips because of the slice. I was able to lock the the video to the audio via link command. But there was one piece of audio because of an extra razor slice I made and it basically became a stand alone audio clip.

My earlier problem was not knowing I could drag those clips from the timeline into the browser and that new icons would be created for use as multi-clips. That little bit of information made a big change in my life- thanks!

However, as you can probably guess instead of having four multi-clips icons to work with, I have five because I sliced one of the tracks making them it into two.

I dragged the repaired/divided clips into a sequence. I had used in/out points before putting them into the browser in the first place. I saw where the video and audio was staggered (the way it should be because that was the only way to get the video back into sync- push it forward along the audio line).

I can see how the little slice I made to do the correction is going to cause me a lot of grief if I keep using my razor tool on the next project. I have a tendency to divide the song/performances with using the razor. If there are ten songs, I would make ten razor cuts. If I do this on all four camera and then drag the clips into the browser, I'm not going to get 4 clips, I'm going to get 40 clips. I definitely don't want to do that.

In the future, I'll use markers instead of razor slices. I'll reserve the razor for cutting out the dropped frames. But even so, I'm going to get divided more than the desired four angles when it comes time to drag them into the browser.

So in the end, I now think I understand why I will be making several multi-clip editing attempts. After fixing the dropped frames, I'll get something like.

Cam 1A, Cam 1B, Cam 1C
Cam 2
Cam 3
Cam 4

I'll have to make multi-clips three different times instead of once to make up for Cam 1 turning into three clips because of the dropped frame correction.

Am I thinking about this correctly, or am I complicating it?

Thanks,
Scott
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