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What Happens in Vegas...
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Old March 23rd, 2014, 01:28 AM   #1
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DV Workflow

I hope this is the correct forum for my question. I apologize if it is not.

I am not new to the concept of video and editing, just new to having a decent camera to learn on and do things CORRECTLY. I'll try to keep my question as simple as possible. I have searched everywhere but have not been able to find an answer that breaks it down so specifically for me.

My question is on workflow. I'm shooting with a Canon XL2, mainly short films by myself. My intended output is probably going to be just dvd for home/friends viewing on television or maybe just a file to watch on the computer and possibly Web (like YouTube) sharing just to share my work and get feedback. But mainly home television viewing.

What I mean by work flow, if this isn't the actual meaning of the word, is the process from taking the footage off the camera, into Sony Vegas and the order of steps to completed project. Specifically, I don't know if the file format needs to be changed to fit what my output is going to be, what that format is, if I change it as soon as it comes out of the camera, or if that's the last step of the process. Do I keep the footage in the same format as what comes out of the camera to do all of my editing such as color correction and such? Is there a certain order things need to be done in as far as correction goes (for example, if you needed to adjust white balance a bit and also do some color correction and sharpening, is there an order those should be done in)?

Basically what is the order I go in from getting my footage into the software, to having a completed film, or does order matter? And what type of file is it best to render to for my stated purposes to keep the best possible quality and at what step do I change from the raw file format from the camera to the one I need for my output?

I know I said I'd keep this simple, but since I messed that up and it's already really long, I'll also ask what if I wanted to add a special effect in with another program such as after effects? Where in the workflow does that come in and do I need to be keeping it in the format that it came out of the camera as during this whole process in order to keep from losing quality? Thank you guys in advance and I do apologize for the long post here.

I'm eager to learn the right way to do this stuff. As a teenager I use to just shoot with a cheap camcorder, load it up in an editor and do what I thought needed to be done with no order at all. Just as it would cross my mind that at certain thing needed adjusted. Then I'd render it to .AVI because I had seen a lot of video in that format. Then later I would load it up in after effects and play with effects and then maybe even go back and play with contrast or something again. There was no order and I'd end up rendering many many times that I feel were probably unnecessary. I'd like to do it right now and have the proper structure. Holy cow this is so long I may have to edit it later just so people will read it.
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Old March 23rd, 2014, 05:59 AM   #2
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Re: DV Workflow

DV footage is basically an AVI file. Now that I've said that understand that AVI is a wrapper. Much like the candy bar you buy at the store, if the wrapper doesn't have the name printed on it then you don't know what's inside. So what do we do? For 99.999% of the case nothing, because Vegas will see the file in the wrapper and not have a problem with it at all. It's common to NOT DO A THING to change the AVI file at all during ingest. Once it's loaded in your computer, save it with the project name. Open a new project in Vegas bring the footage to the timeline, cut, edit, sweeten sound....whatever you need or want to do but SAVE it OFTEN. Most common is to use the name of the file and add a number. IOW, if I shoot a talking heads interview and the name of the interviewee is John Smith. The first cut is John Smith 1, then John Smith 2, then John Smith 3 etc. This way if needed I can go back to number 1 if I have to. When all done, save the final cut then RENDER AS to MPG/AC3 for DVD using the appropriate bitrate and settings for AC3 audio. If you have DVD Architect by Sony and are using that for authoring and burning DVDs bring the rendered project into DVDA, author, burn and play on your favorite TV.

This is an abbreviated tutorial. Very abbreviated. You tube is full of tutorials, Edward Troxel had news letter on his site and is considered a total Vegas geek (in a good way) wnad while the newsletters are aimed at older versions of Vegas, for the most part the way of doing things in Vegas hasn't really changed since I started using it in version 2.
there are lots of guys here at DVi that use Vegas that are far more knowledgeable than me...load in the footage and start playing around. As long as you use a different name to save as you can't hurt a thing.

Have fun, good luck!
What do I know? I'm just a video-O-grafer.
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Old March 23rd, 2014, 07:10 AM   #3
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Re: DV Workflow

To add to Don's recommendations, proper file management is one thing that is critical to me. I start everything with a master project folder with as many subfolders as needed. For example, the master folder would be Joe-birthday. Inside of that folder are folders labeled Captures, Music, Graphics, Project_Files, Renders, etc.
Even if the data exists elsewhere on my hard drive, I copy it to my project folder as it makes backups much easier.
Get into the habit of saving often and doing incremental saves. By that I mean Joe-birthday-01.veg, Joe-birthday-02.veg, etc. That way you can go back to an earlier version if things go wrong.
Sony has a lot of tutorials and articles on their site at Sony Creative Software - Training and Support
Have fun and feel free to come back any time if you have questions and we'll do our best to answer them for you.
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Old March 23rd, 2014, 10:30 AM   #4
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Re: DV Workflow

The overall workflow looks like this:

Capture from the camera with a firewire cable.
Use Vegas for the capture.
This will result in AVI files (.avi) containing your video in the DV25 codec.
Render to separate audio and video files that conform to the DVD spec.
Use these files in DVD Architect to author and burn DVDs.

Edward Troxel's newsletters cover details of this workflow really well. Find them at http://jetdv.com and read them all!
30 years of pro media production. Vegas user since 1.0. Webcaster since 1997. Freelancer since 2000. College instructor since 2001.
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Old March 23rd, 2014, 12:53 PM   #5
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Re: DV Workflow

Thank you guys. That straightens things out for me. I didn't even think of YouTube for workflow. Not sure why. But I'll definitely read the suggested tutorials and thanks again. I like the idea of saving incrementally. Very good idea.
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Old March 25th, 2014, 02:57 AM   #6
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Re: DV Workflow

Originally Posted by Joe Hounschell View Post
I like the idea of saving incrementally. Very good idea.
Total must-do!

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Old March 25th, 2014, 07:09 AM   #7
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Re: DV Workflow

Joe, if you install Excalibur, the free "Auto Save" plugin is also installed which will simplify making incremental backups.

Edward Troxel [SCVU]
JETDV Scripts/Excalibur/Newsletters
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