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Final Cut Suite
Discussing the editing of all formats with FCS, FCP, FCE

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Old September 23rd, 2008, 07:18 AM   #1
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Pro DVD software and how-to book

I couldn't find what I'm looking for in a few keyword searches - so I appologize if this a common question.

I'm using FCP but my only DVD creation experience (unfortunately) is with iDVD. I want to create professional-looking DVDs with audio and video that I'll edit with FCP. I might also want to have some still photos on the DVDs as well (or a CD or a DVD of only still photos). I'm not sure of the capabilities of the software but might it be possible to create a template setup with a little corporate logo animation first and all I have to do is add in the particular video file I'm looking to burn - and all the intro logo and menu pages will have a certain design (colours, font, etc). I would imagine the logo - if complex - might be something to have done by a designer/animator, but is DVD creation easy enough to pick up or is it something best left to professional DVD designers? Is there any particular mac DVD software that most professionals use?
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Old September 23rd, 2008, 11:56 AM   #2
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I don't think DVD design is difficult. I think it's easiest if you try to understand the concepts and limitations of the DVD specification first, and then look at how tools such as DVD Studio Pro let you create a DVD within those constraints. The manual that comes with DVD Studio Pro is, in my opinion, a good starting point for all of the above.

Once you know what you want to achieve and how to break it down into tracks, menus, scripts, etc. and audio and video assets, some experience with Photoshop, Motion, etc. will help a lot.

I like DVD authoring because I think it takes a combination of skills usually found in engineers as well as artists. If you have a little bit of both, this is not something you should have to shy away from.

- Martin
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Old September 23rd, 2008, 03:23 PM   #3
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Yeah if you've got Final Cut Studio 2- you already have DVD Studio Pro which is pretty much the gold standard on the Mac. It's not much like iDVD but that's actually a good thing. You can do a lot more with it than you ever could with iDVD and in fact I wouldn't be surprised if you didn't have at least one DVD in your collection that was authored with DVD Studio Pro.

Anyways- here's a tutorial that gives the basics of DVD making with DVD Studio Pro:

First Play - a "Bare Bones" DVD

and if you want to move into something a bit more advanced, I humbly offer my own training course which explores a lot of the sorts of things you can't do with iDVD like director's commentary, scripting, easter eggs, etc:

Call Box - DVD Studio Pro: Special Edition

(and of course all our training DVDs are edited in Final Cut Pro and authored with DVD Studio Pro) :)

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