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Recycle computers and electronics

-January 23, 2003-

"Taking your DV Movie to Film"

It was "Taking your DV Movie to Film Night" and we showed you a comparison Film Out between the Panasonic DVX-100 and Sony PD-150 Camcorders, Rules for taking your DV Movie to Film, the premiere of Final Cut Express, Show and tells, and of course World Famous Raffle.

As usual first off was another round of Stump the Gurus and this month no one stumped Ken Stone, Andrew Balis or Steve Martin of Ripple Training. Some of the questions asked and answered were:

Q.) Everytime I go to export to QuickTime the defaults are always what I dont want. Is there away to correct these defaults to something I do want?
A.) Well unless you want to go to a different codec you should always export as a FCP Movie cause by default it will keep original settings and no compression will be done.

Q.) Can I use the VO Tool for ADR and if so how can I replace the old audio with new ?
A.)Well yes, but it isn't the best way to achieve professional results. To replace audio simply delete old track drop in new, lasso audio and video and hit Command+L to link. Drag back to browser so you have a nice new clip.

Q.) How do I get rid and find all of my un used media.
A.)Thats 2 steps Really. Select your sequence icon in browser. Go to Edit menu and select FIND then select UNUSED Media in window. Highlight all the found unused clips and hit Shift+D to make them offline. In next window select move them to trash. For trimming media open up the Media Manager and choose USE EXISTING and check Delete unused media and check USE HANDLES.

Q.) I want to be able to put my audio transitions on either left, right, or center just like Video. How can I do that?
A.) Easy. Don't do it from the Effects menu. Drag it from the browser and drop where you want.

At Macworld Apple announced Final Cut Express which has now been dubbed as FCP's little brother. lafcpug thought it might be a good idea to show everyone exactly what it is and exactly how it differs from it's bigger brother FCP. So we brought in Steve Martinto tell and show us.

Steve immediately opened up FCE to show us the interface and at first glance it is no different than FCP. Well heck, you say; I paid $700.00 more for FCP and FCE looks identical? Well no. Once you get under the hood, you find there are significant differences.
First off the app opens to a default of TWO video tracks and FOUR audio tracks. OK. Audio Video settings are missing, replaced by ONLY easy set ups. Here's a list of differences.

Some key differences between FCP and FCE:
1. Final Cut Express is DV only (NTSC and PAL frame rates only, no 24fps support).
2. Final Cut Pro supports 3rd party capture cards.
3. Final Cut Pro supports timecode, Final Cut Express does not present timecode information to the user.
4. Final Cut Pro allows you to LOG and capture.
5. Final Cut Pro includes support for RS-422 control.
6. Pro users can use Offline RT, Express can not.
7. Pro includes three-way color correction and other advanced tools that Express does not.
8. The keyframing model is substantially different in Express. Only Motion tab items can be keyframed. Filters cannot.
9. Final Cut Pro has a Media Manager, Express does not.
10. Final Cut Pro supports EDL I/O.
11. Final Cut Pro can be extended with Cinema Tools.
12. Final Cut Pro includes Audio OMF export.
13. Pro supports Edit To Tape and Insert editing.
14. Pro can do a Batch Export.
15. FXScript is not in Express.
16. AE plug-ins are not in Express.
17. Undo: FCP = 99, FCE = 32.

Steve pretty much went through all these changes and one could see his mind working for a work around. So far only work around to the parts that are missing is to get FCPro.

It's lafcpugs position that FCE is a welcome addition to the NLE family and FCE has a place in this wide open market. That said, we hold to the position that we will remain the LA FC-PRO user group and believe FCE users will gain much from demos and tips using the FCPro interface.

WE did a VERY unscientific poll where we asked the capacity crowd whether they would buy FCE or had bought FCE. No one raised their hands.

Our first Show and Tell of the night was a dandy but unfortunately was plagued throughout by sound problems emanating from the deck or mixer we were using which was a real shame because this was a good one folks.

Director and Motion Graphics artist Lance Laspina showed us clips from his upcoming documentary on legendary Sci Fi fantasy artist, Frank Frazetta.The clips demonstrated how Frazetta has tremendously influenced the lives of those in the worlds of film and art like no one else before him. And he has managed to do this while having almost died due to an undiagnosed thyroid condition, and having suffered 6 strokes which has forced him to switch drawing hands from his right to his left.

Visual effects, (mostly After Effects) combined with an original score make this documentary's style unique. Bo Derek, Ralph Bakshi, John Milius, Glenn Danzig, and Forrest Ackerman are just a few of the people who appear in this film.
For more info go to Lance's web site: and especially go to Frank's official website:

The Panasonic DVX100 24P camcorder is a hit. A flat out hit. It has probably gotten more hype, more press, more buzz then any single camera since the first 3 chip DV Camcorder from Sony several years back.

Filmmaker Noah Kadner decided to see how this camera's image transferred to film compared to the Sony PD150. So one day armed with both cameras and a crew of five and two actors, Noah ventured out into Hollywood and took over the Knitting factory, and with the expertise of DP David Mullen, set up a couple Kino-flos and mounted the 2 cameras side by side and shot the two actors siting at a table.

The DVX was shot in Advanced mode and used dvfilm's dvfilmmaker to do the 3:2 pulldown for editing. The PD 150 was straight 60i.

The footage was sent to dvfilm in Austin Texas for transfer and the results were shown on the big screen for the world to see. You can read all about this shoot here at lafcpug review_dvx_pd150.html

One can't really describe in words this type of demo as it's all visual and if there is any reason to buy this months DVD, this is it. For what it's worth, we polled the audience and they overwhelmingly picked the DVX100 image as the most "film like."

Well it is "Taking your DV Movie to Film" night and so we brought in filmmaker Mark Shepherd, owner of LA's Digital Film Technologies who showed us clips of various Mini DV Camcorder footage transferred to various film stocks, plus showed us a bit of HD, Beta, Digi-Beta and even VHS transferred to film. But it was his "rules for shooting Mini DV if you KNOW you are going to film" that had everyone's ears tuned in. And there are many rules.

First off, Digital Film Technologies has a proprietary system and primarily uses Kodak Vision camera Negative film stock which gives the film grain and texture. In certain film blow ups they use high speed negative that is rated at 500 ASA.

Rules: Choice of Camera
-Use the highest resolution, least compressed camera shooting format. In this order that would be:
-High Def
-Digital Betacam
-D9 Digital S
-Betacam SP
-Mini DV

Shoot in 16:9 wide screen 1:77 and in order of preference:
-Use a native 16:9 camera
-Use an anamorphic lens such as Optex or Century Precision Optics
-Shoot in the camera anamorphic mode.

If you shoot in 4:3 and blow up to 35mm you will lose about 25% of picture, and will likely cut off heads.

Hire a DP who does not hate Video. BIG rule.
-Do not overexpose
-Use lights and grip light control equipment to subtract light from bright areas of scenes such as windows.
-Avoid shooting back lit scenes in front of bright windows.
-Turn OFF camera auto iris
-Use the camera zebras and calibrated monitor to determine exposure.
-Do NOT crush the blacks
-Turn off the Auto Gain
-Shoot with little or no gain if possible
-Turn down edge enhancement (Nothing says "video" like edge enhancement.)
-Do not use too much filtration in front of lens. (at most a 1/4 pro mist)
-Avoid fast or whip pans
-Pan slowly and pan following an object or person.

Focus is critical (get a high resolution monitor and use it.)
The tighter the shot the more resolution
Wide Angle establishing shots dont appear that great on the screen.
Don't use wide angle lenses all the time
Back off the subject and use longer focal lengths (subject will be in focus and separated from background.
Hire a GOOD sound person (Get the BEST production sound possible and use good balanced mics, both shotguns and wireless lavs.
Get the BEST audio Mix possible.
Do make a DAT or DA88 with TimeCode that has 2 pops and is in sync with picture to be used in making a Dolby SR optical Track

Do ALL your color correction in the digital realm. Dont rely on the film lab to do scene by scene color correction. All they can do is light intensity and simple RGB. Your objective is to get a "one light" answer print from the lab, which saves you thousands of dollars.
DO use software that can help remove "jaggies" or other artifacts. Do NOT use film look software.

Mark then showed us various video stock blown up to film but unfortunately we cant show this footage on this months DVD as we could not get the rights.

What was the most surprising was the footage from a DSR-500. It was the audience favorite beating out the High Def image.

So how much does all of this cost? Well it depends a lot on the lab you go to and what system they are using. But it's a lot.

Next up was a very fine show and tell from filmmaker J.P. Husky with local hip hop artist, In-Q as the star. The "Who I Am" video is the first single off the album Memoirs of an Insomniac, an independent release by local hip hop artist In-Q. The video, shot with a TRV-900 and a PD-150, was cut entirely on Final Cut Pro and can be viewed online at In-Q performs frequently around Los Angeles and his calendar of events can also be viewed on the website. For further information regarding the album or the video, please contact J.P. at

World famous Raffle rounded out the evening and we thank those who so generously donated the following items.

2 FCP Keyboard Keycharts - Neotron Design
2 Free VIP Passes to Creative Cow Conference - Creative Cow
2 Royalty Free Stock Footage CDs - ThinkStock
1 copy of DVFilmmaker - dvfilm
Free FCP 101 class
- Digital FilmTree
5 $20.00 Gift Certificates -
Poquito Mas Restaurants (Hey, we gotta eat)
DV Companion for FCP 3 -
Intelligent Assistance
TroubleShooter for Final Cut Pro - Intelligent Assistance
DVD Companion Pro Pack - Recipe 4 DVD
Various books - CMP Books
Final Draft - Final Draft
1 T-shirt -
2 copies of lafcpug DVDs - lafcpug

Special thanks must go to Chris Rogers, for taking tickets. Ken stone for taking pics. Dan Brockett for taping the show, and of course Promax for footing the bill.

Michael Horton,