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Old March 2nd, 2006, 11:04 PM   #1
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Switching to Vegas?

I am looking to switch to Vegas (+DVD) as well; looked all through Rick Steele's post just a few ticks down from here, but I've got my own set of specific questions.

First off, I've been editing in Liquid Edition 5.6 for seveal years now, and I am very comfortable with that interface. Things I like include:
Background rendering...It's not a gimmick, it's a great feature...
Integrated DVD Authoring ... powerful enuf for most of my applications
Automatic backup ...Actually, a love-hate kind of thing
Ability to capture 4-channels of 12-bit Audio
Very stable (My version)
Smart sound compatability (Version 7.2)
Multiple camera capability (7.2)
Dolby 5.1 (7.2)
And a host of others.

I would really like it to have 24P editing (I shoot with an XL2), better titling, and quite frankly, something that will be very difficult to attain, a broader user-base and more respected name.

"What do you edit with? " , I'm asked.
"Liquid"
"Oh. OK"
"Really, it's a great system...", I say defensively...

So here's my questions about Vegas. I know it's got 24P capabilities (which I want but really don't need...) and I think it has the professional version of Dolby. What about the other options?

My big concerns are regarding the rendering. Clips are rendered on the L.E. timeline as I work on something else, then I can view them shortly thereafter to see how they look. How do you guys do it, and whats the effect on your working time? (What is "Pre-render" as stated in another post, and is this good enuf to get a feel for the final product?)

Is the Vegas CG/Titling system as bad/amateurish as L.E's?

It seems that Liquid Edition is like being left handed in a right handed world, but I believe the principles are the same, and getting to the end result is just accomplished by a different path. Realistically, I'm concerned most by the following:
The Learning Curve.
Rendering
Compatability with existing projects. (I think I'll have to back up and re-capture?)

I'd appreciate any comments, and sorry for this (almost) duplicate post.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 12:26 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Zens
I am looking to switch to Vegas (+DVD) as well; looked all through Rick Steele's post just a few ticks down from here, but I've got my own set of specific questions.

First off, I've been editing in Liquid Edition 5.6 for seveal years now, and I am very comfortable with that interface. Things I like include:
Background rendering...It's not a gimmick, it's a great feature...
Integrated DVD Authoring ... powerful enuf for most of my applications
Automatic backup ...Actually, a love-hate kind of thing
Ability to capture 4-channels of 12-bit Audio
Very stable (My version)
Smart sound compatability (Version 7.2)
Multiple camera capability (7.2)
Dolby 5.1 (7.2)
And a host of others.

I would really like it to have 24P editing (I shoot with an XL2), better titling, and quite frankly, something that will be very difficult to attain, a broader user-base and more respected name.

"What do you edit with? " , I'm asked.
"Liquid"
"Oh. OK"
"Really, it's a great system...", I say defensively...

So here's my questions about Vegas. I know it's got 24P capabilities (which I want but really don't need...) and I think it has the professional version of Dolby. What about the other options?

My big concerns are regarding the rendering. Clips are rendered on the L.E. timeline as I work on something else, then I can view them shortly thereafter to see how they look. How do you guys do it, and whats the effect on your working time? (What is "Pre-render" as stated in another post, and is this good enuf to get a feel for the final product?)

Is the Vegas CG/Titling system as bad/amateurish as L.E's?

It seems that Liquid Edition is like being left handed in a right handed world, but I believe the principles are the same, and getting to the end result is just accomplished by a different path. Realistically, I'm concerned most by the following:
The Learning Curve.
Rendering
Compatability with existing projects. (I think I'll have to back up and re-capture?)

I'd appreciate any comments, and sorry for this (almost) duplicate post.
Don't worry about what evertone else uses, unless it means business for you. I've been trying the Vegas system by using their Stripped down version-- Vegas Movie Studio + DVD. Trying to migrate from Premiere Pro, because it seemed to be what everyone thinks I should do. I don't like the basic interface layout, it doesn't feel comfotable to me. You may want try that version 1st --about $100 vs. $500. I think you may be able to upgrade from there. There might also be a trial of Vegas out there.

Premiere's titler is awesome, and I am told Vegas is not so good. The one in Vegas MS isn't very good, in my opinion.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 04:53 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Zens
My big concerns are regarding the rendering. Clips are rendered on the L.E. timeline as I work on something else, then I can view them shortly thereafter to see how they look. How do you guys do it, and whats the effect on your working time? (What is "Pre-render" as stated in another post, and is this good enuf to get a feel for the final product?)
Vegas supports multiple instances. You can use one instance for the application to render while you continue editing in another instance.
Or you can use Vegas' Network Rendering feature: you can assign the rendering to another computer in your network and continue working on your projects on your main computer...

Best thing to do is download the trial version and test it:
http://www.sonymediasoftware.com/dow...p2.asp?DID=583
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 09:24 AM   #4
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Quote:
Things I like include:
Background rendering...It's not a gimmick, it's a great feature...
Integrated DVD Authoring ... powerful enuf for most of my applications
Automatic backup ...Actually, a love-hate kind of thing
Ability to capture 4-channels of 12-bit Audio
Very stable (My version)
Smart sound compatability (Version 7.2)
Multiple camera capability (7.2)
Dolby 5.1 (7.2)
And a host of others.
You are correct - Vegas doesn't have background rendering. Never has been an issue for me, though. The real-time previews work very well and doing a quick RAM render over questionable sections has always sufficed for me.

DVDA3 isn't directly integrated with the Vegas timeline but does integrate well with Vegas. Plus it is very powerful with professional level features.

Vegas does auto save the project. You can also use scripting to expand on this feature. For example, the save tool in Excalibur will save the project into a separate "emergency" folder with the date/time appended giving you running versions of the project should you need to go back to any particular point in time. I think Ultimate S has a similar feature.

For 4-channel audio, use Scenalyzer Live. It can capture Video+Stereo 1 into an AVI file while simultaneously capturing Stereo 2 into a separate WAV file. It works great for this function.

"Very Stable" - words most people use to describe Vegas - especially when compared to other NLEs.

You could still use your existing Smart Sound and just import the audio into Vegas. Plus you could explore other tools such as Acid.

For multi-cam, I think you'll find that feature-rich in Vegas. Excalibur first provided multi-cam in Vegas about 3 years ago and has grown significantly in abilities and features over the years. VASST also has some multi-cam offerings. Feature-wise, I don't think you can be Vegas for multi-cam but it is an extra add-on cost.

Dolby 5.1 --- Vegas' options here are top-notch.


Quote:
My big concerns are regarding the rendering. Clips are rendered on the L.E. timeline as I work on something else, then I can view them shortly thereafter to see how they look. How do you guys do it, and whats the effect on your working time? (What is "Pre-render" as stated in another post, and is this good enuf to get a feel for the final product?)
As I said above, the real-time preview is very good. However, there may be times when you wish to see the full rendered version. A quick and easy way is to do a RAM Render. It will render that small section into RAM so you can see it in higher quality. Vegas DOES have pre-render functionality but it does not occur in the background. Another option is the "Render to New Track" option.

Quote:
Is the Vegas CG/Titling system as bad/amateurish as L.E's?
Depends on what you mean by "bad/amateurish". Most people would like to see the titling in Vegas updated. However, the existing titler is still very powerful when combined with the other tools available in Vegas. Sometimes it just takes a little imaginative thought.

Quote:
Realistically, I'm concerned most by the following:
The Learning Curve.
Rendering
Compatability with existing projects. (I think I'll have to back up and re-capture?)
The learning curve varies based on many factors. For example, coming from another NLE you have to "unlearn" a few things in order to learn how Vegas does things. However, there's a lot of instruction for Vegas available ranging from free (my newsletters) to cost (books and the various training DVDs that are available)

To me, rendering is a non issue. I don't render until I'm done. Then I do a single render while I work on something else. Plus network rendering is availabe so you could set up a secondary machine to render. Also, since you can open Vegas multiple times, just start a render, open Vegas again, and start on the next project.

As far as compatiblity, if you've capture DV-AVI files, Vegas should read them just fine. If Vegas doesn't read any particular file, it's a matter of finding the appropriate codec for Vegas to use.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 10:09 AM   #5
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I came into Vegas (4) from Liquid, and I *hated* it at first.

But that was before I got to know it.

Things which drove me nuts in Liquid -- like the simple placement of transitions, for example -- are super-easy and super-smooth. Many things you have to go to an editor for in Liquid, like transparency, time mapping, volume envelopes, etc., can be handled right on the timeline in Vegas. Vegas could also handle video clips of all types, whereas Liquid would choke the further away you got from straight DV or standard MPEG.

Vegas is also much better at rendering -- meaning, exporting. Liquid couldn't export an AVI worth spit and it had quite possibly the worst WMV render of anything I've seen, including Studio. It had a tendency to crash on the renders if you didn't have settings exactly so, and those settings usually weren't the defaults. If not for the actually very slick "fuse" function, Liquid would have been ALMOST useless as an exporter of finished clips. And even the fuse exports the video and audio L and R as separate files, with that ridiculous audio nub on the video track.

To say nothing of Liquid's arcane clip capture and naming scheme. Liquid names its clips with a bizzare series of numbers representing the timecode points, whereas Vegas will let you name the clips what you want. True, Liquid will let you name them WITHIN Liquid, but that's of no help when you want to find the clips in Explorer for other reasons. Also, while Liquid does allow scene detection, it doesn't capture the separate scenes as separate clips; it's only within Liquid that the clips are separated. Vegas actually captures separate scenes as separate clips.

Then you get to audio. Vegas has always ruled at this, having full 5.1 capability before anyone else, and having it in a very intuitive, very straightforward interface. And the rest of the audio tools package is second to none.

I wasn't fond of Vegas's interface at first, either, but quickly learned that the interface can be anything I want it to be -- it's COMPLETELY customizable, where your windows can go anywhere you want them to be -- unlike Liquid, where you're stuck with a few basic configurations and can move buttons around. If you want, you can set up Vegas to appear very similar to Liquid -- but I think you'll soon find there are other configurations you like better.

And, of course, Vegas's 24p capabilities are far beyond anything else you'll find. If you want film-like video, and have the capability of shooting 24p, I think you'll come to realize that maybe, right now, you don't think 24p is a top priority because you know you can't edit native 24p. See for yourself. (If you want to see how easy it is to work in 24p with Vegas, check out my tutorial in this thread: http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=61243 )

It's true, Vegas does not have a separate source video window, and I missed that at first, but then came to realize it's really a waste of space. You never actually need to watch both your source and your project at the same time, so it makes sense not to waste the screen real estate. And you can use the Trimmer in a limited way as a source window if you really want.

I also thought I'd miss the timeline-to-DVD capability, but the truth is, that's kind of consumerish. Your trade-off is that you're very limited as to your authoring choices, and exporting to a dedicated DVD application is going to produce better-quality and more professional-looking DVDs. And DVD Architect is much easier and far more intuitive than all the arcane arrows and balloons and whatnot needed on the Liquid timeline to author anything but the most basic of DVDs. Try a dedicated DVD app, and you'll see what I mean.

As others pointed out, Vegas doesn't take over your Windows system, and in fact you can have several instances of the program open at once. You can literally work in several different projects at the same time, and if you want, you can export/import between them.

Gosh, and all that's just compared to Vegas 4. Vegas 5 and 6 have made vast, vast improvements -- quantum leap improvements -- in 3D motion, in bezier masking, in compositing, and in so many other areas, it is, in my opinion, simply the best editor in its class -- AND it's the least expensive one, even with DVD Architect included.

Remember, being used to Liquid, you're going to find almost EVERYTHING approached differently -- but that's because Vegas doesn't have any baggage stemming from "the old days." When Vegas was created, it was approached not from the perspective of "it's been done this way for years, so how do we mimic it," but "what's the BEST way of going about this?" The results speak for themselves. But it might require a little bit of unlearning to really appreciate the simplicity and logic of it all.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 12:46 PM   #6
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Well said David. Nice to see another DVXuser here. :D I can't give you nearly as comprehensive of a review as that, but I will add my two cents to the discussion.

I switched from Premiere Pro to Vegas last year. I bought a DVX100A and wanted the best 24P capabilities I could get. After some research (and much frustration with Premiere) I decided that Vegas was going to be best. So I purchased it along with DVD Architect 3 and waded on in. At first the Vegas interface was a bit disorienting, but like David said you can customize it any way you want. Now I have it set up with a large preview window on the top and the timeline on the bottom. It just works better that way for me. So don't let the interface through you off. It's really cool once you get used to it. Just like David said, you have to "unlearn" things from your old NLE to get used to the new one. I was so used to panning and cropping in Premiere that I got super frustrated with trying to do it in Vegas. But now that I know how to do it in Vegas I wouldn't ever go back. And that's my basic summary of Vegas versus anything. I think once you get the hang of Vegas there's little to no reason to return to your old NLE. Unless you have BNS (battered NLE syndrome) and find the comfort of returning to a less than ideal situation too inviting to resist.

Best of luck in your decision. As others have said, you should download the trial and play with it. Very good way to make a determination.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 03:07 PM   #7
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I chose Vegas, because I read many more comments here, from people being pleased when switching to Vegas from another NLE, than being pleased when switching from Vegas to another NLE. Now I just have to get it learnt well!
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 03:14 PM   #8
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Using Vegas for cable ads

I'm a newbie to video production. I'm recording on a gl2, and using vegas 6.0 for post. Usually my finished product is DVD. Recently I was asked to do a 30 sec. spot for airing on a local cable station. The problem is, they want everything in Beta SP. What are my options. Thanks for any help.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 03:31 PM   #9
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What I know about Beta formats could fit neatly on the head of a pin, and leave you room to build a condo. If it were me, and this was just a one time thing, I'd post under "Community Marketplace>Helping Hands" and see if maybe you can find someone here with the right knowledge and equipment, that could do the conversion.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 04:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Terry Souza
I'm a newbie to video production. I'm recording on a gl2, and using vegas 6.0 for post. Usually my finished product is DVD. Recently I was asked to do a 30 sec. spot for airing on a local cable station. The problem is, they want everything in Beta SP. What are my options. Thanks for any help.
Does the cable station have miniDV decks? I'd be surprised if the answer was no as it's a very common format.
If it is no though, your first step is to find a local post production house that has Beta SP decks.
Then you have two possible options (maybe more but this is all I can think of).
#1 is to do your master to miniDV and, if they don't have a miniDV deck, bring your deck/ camcorder to their shop with you. If they have a good miniDV deck the dub will be done in component mode. Otherwise, it'll be composite or Y/C (aka SVHS).
The other option is to render out using the YUV codec (high quality AVI) and burn it to a DVD or dump it to a hard drive. They may have the capability to import this file into their NLE and dump it to tape from there.
The bottom line is to ask them what they prefer and see if you can supply it.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 04:49 PM   #11
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30 seconds of SD is small enough that it's feasible to transmit it uncompressed (YUV or RBG) over the net. Perhaps there's a possibility there?
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 05:21 PM   #12
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OT- betaSP

They likely want betaSP because that's the way they've always been working and their setup is designed to handle betaSP well. Typically, betaSP is the most preferred format for delivering masters on (and then digital betacam).

A typical master should be formatted something like the following:
30s or more of bars and tone; for betaSP, tone should be at 0VU. Program peaks shouldn't exceed 4VU.
black
slate with pertinent details
black
10s countdown with a 2-pop 2 seconds before 01:00:00;00
The commercial starts at 01:00:00;00 exactly.
black

The exact timings of everything can vary from broadcaster to broadcaster... as with some other details. I don't believe they always tell you what those details are unless they reject your master. In Europe, a lot of broadcasters got their act together and made a standard spec for their masters (check out the CHEFF delivery specs).

2- An online editing facility can lay your project to tape for you. Online editing is usually costs at least $150/hr plus tape stock.

You could also try contacting them to see if they accept masters on other formats. According to Spot, at least one broadcaster prefers digital delivery since the footage can be put on their video server easier.

Another option is to get your project dubbed onto betaSP. Your commercial likely will not start at 01:00:00;00 exactly, which breaks convention.
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Old March 3rd, 2006, 05:31 PM   #13
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you don't want to go with le 6?

one big step up with vegas is the two-pass mpeg2 rendering capability, plus it uses the industry standard mainconcept encoder as well, which does a pretty good job.

you had better check out the titler limitations for yourself, using the vegas demo... try creating a title, then export it for use it in another production, for instance :-/

i looked hard at both le 6 and vegas 5, but went with vegas, because le 6 was too buggy to use at the time... both of those programs have been upgraded since then, so perhaps some of those issues have been fixed.
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Old March 4th, 2006, 11:08 AM   #14
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A downloading I go...

Thanks for a lot of the input, guys. Obviously, the best thing is to download the trial version, which I'll do tonite. That said, some more questions...

I feel real stupid about asking this, but what are scripts? Are they a programming language like C++/ ? It looks like there's a whole aftermarket out there selling these things.

From what I'm hearing, on the "negative" side (which means that I'll need a workaround..) Vegas does not have 4-channel audio capture, (use scenealyzer) multi cam support (I buy something to make that so?) and titling could be better.

From what I've read here, rendering is not much of an issue for me. (I really use background rendering most to see the effects on a timeline, project rendering usually takes an evening anyways...) , and I'm assuming things like color correction, slo motion, still capture, etc are all there; I'll just figure them out as I go. I'm not afraid of learning something new, it'll take a little time, but that is not a fear factor for me.

On the plus side, there's great 24P editing, great sound handling, quite frankly a very sophisticated and intelligent user base (I'm not saying that to suck up, but if sucking up works, I'll milk it!), and probably a lot of undiscovered and unstated goodies that i"ll appreciate afterwords.

Thanks for your continued input.
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Old March 4th, 2006, 12:16 PM   #15
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It sounds like you've got the right idea, Bill -- good luck and enjoy!
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