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Discussing the editing of all formats with FCS, FCP, FCE

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Old April 6th, 2005, 04:54 PM   #1
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How do you guys like Motion? Should I go out and get it? Is it better than its competitors??? Is it like most Mac programs (an awesome concept but I need to wait two or three generations for them to get the kinks out?)?
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Old April 6th, 2005, 05:09 PM   #2
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Location: Mays Landing, NJ
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I like it a lot, just getting up to speed. I don't need to do animated text or anything, but I'm finding the particle effects really useful in and of themselves. The pyro and smoke effects are very cool. It's a lot of power for $300, and the realtime performance is impressive. It bogs down if you throw too much at it, but I suppose that's to be expected.

The only thing is, you need the fastest machine you can lay your hands on to make serious use of this software. I'm using a dual G5/2.5. It runs on the the new powerbooks, but any other G4 will need a new graphics card and maxxed out RAM. Even then you will have mediocre performance and it sounds frustrating from the feedback I've read. It won't even run on the older powerbooks (like my 1ghz 15" aluminum). Also not compatible with any of the iBooks or the Mini.

A dual G5 is basically your price of admission :-)
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Old April 7th, 2005, 02:34 AM   #3
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Location: Chicago, IL
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The FCP / Motion integration isn't perfect yet.

In theory you can import a Motion project file (*.motn) into FCP and it's treated as a clip. Put it on your timeline, and change it a little bit later in Motion, and it updates automatically within FCP.

In practice, well I only used it on my latest project and I found my text to strangely and randomly pulsate. I checked my Motion project over and over, making sure I didn't do anything wrong, but it turns out my trouble wasn't user error but rather a quirk in the program. The pulsating text was showing up in RAM previews and in rendered outputs, except randomly and unpredictably I'd get a clean render without pulsating text. So, to be on the safe side I exported each Motion project to my timeline codec, as full color and also as alpha only.

It was like rolling dice (literally) before I'd get a good result (no pulsating), meaning I had to render the same project a number of times before I'd get a clean result.

It's possible that Motion works much better in DV than what I was using, DVCProHD720p30. Maybe it's rock solid in DV. I suppose I'll find out during my next project, because the thing is that once you use Motion (or LiveType for that matter) you'll stay far far away from FCP's built in titler. Creating motion menus and/or menu transitions for DVDs without learning After Effects and without the limitations of DVDSP 3's built in menu compositor is going to help me out a lot too.
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Old April 7th, 2005, 06:31 AM   #4
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Mays Landing, NJ
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I have done all my motion work as standalone projects where I exported the results to Quicktime files. I then use these in FCP. This works just fine, but I haven't tried putting the .motn files directly into FCP. I'm also working with SD 720x480 DV.

If you visit the Motion discussion groups at you'll see that people find Motion very sluggish when working in HD and seem generally unhappy. Fortunately I don't have a need for this right now. Perhaps a new version will fix this (remember, we are still on version 1 of this software). OTOH, it seems to tax Apple's top of the line hardware to the limit, so maybe we'll need to wait for more powerful machines before it really comes into its own.
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Old April 7th, 2005, 10:36 AM   #5
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I love it! This is the tool to use to make DVD Menus and transititions as well as titling. I have also used it for compositing, and I must say it is nice to get instant feedback. However, I would probably hold off a few weeks, chances are we will be seeing Motion 2.0 soon enough, something that is needed to fix a few quirks.
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Old April 7th, 2005, 10:45 PM   #6
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I use it at work from time to time and find it frustrating. I use it on a dual 2ghz G5 with 2 gigs of RAM. One of the problems it has is handling audio. It most of the time won't play audio and when it does it's the wrong speed and out of synch.

At home on my Mini I obviously can't use Motion, BUT, I have found that LiveType is a lot more powerful than most people realize and I use it for more thn just titles. I think the interface for LiveType is a forerunner of the Motion interface, many shared elements. LT also has some nice particle emmiters as well.

I think NAB will bring forth Motion 2.0.
Dave Perry Cinematographer LLC
Director of Photography Editor Digital Film Production 540.915.2752
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