Spinworks Media Group has come out with their
own version of a training DVD for Final Cut Pro 3. It's an interesting
It's a 2-DVD set with interactive menus
to guide you through everything from basic concepts of using
FCP to using it in every way it was designed to work.
Shane Ross designed an interface for
this DVD set that really works well - you can view the DVD straight
through, go by sections, or go by chapter. The chapter headings
are in the printed guide, so if you need a quick reference on
how to do a particular thing in FCP, you can simply type the
number of the chater (e.g. "334" for the section on
"Slipping and Sliding Segments") into your keyboard
or on your remote if you are watching on a separate DVD player.
It is easy enough to go between the DVD player and Final Cut
if you have both open at the same time.
The first DVD has a ton of useful demos
and content, including all the video and audio used in the demos
in DV format, so you can follow along if you'd like. The program
doesn't direct you through a particular project, like "Inside
Editing with Final Cut Pro" that I reviewed earlier, as
much as just giving examples of things you might do on a typical
edit. Other useful goodies include quite a few Sounddogs sounds,
a demo of Joe's Filters (see review
here on this site also), a keyboard shortcut layout from NeoTron,
several Digital Juice Jumpbacks already in DV format, a few Worldclips
(video scenes from cities around the world), and more. There's
a wealth of good material here.
the host, takes us through a very detailed tour of Final Cut,
in a series that is well-suited for beginners who have never
edited with Final Cut, to experienced users who want to learn
a few more ideas on how to edit with the greatest of ease. Things
are described in detail, e.g. the reason for using "white"
over "superwhite" for broadcast. The narration is good,
and the closeups on-screen that follow the mouse make everything
very esay to read and follow along.
Over five hours of training is broken
down into four main sections, Disc One has "Understanding"
and "Managing", and Disc Two has "Using"
The "Understanding" section
has all the basics you'd ever want, minimum requirements for
Mac, video capture options, storage, cameras and decks, etc.
It has good demonstrations of log and capture, and different
ways to handle that and the incoming media. There is a good explanation
of the nomenclature, covering nearly every button and option,
tools, proper setup and use of sequences.
The "Managing" section covers
Easy Setups, creating your own and saving them, project setup
and browser/timeline use. Very good and detailed information
on the varous ways to organize and use bins, sorting, searching
for media, modifying information, and all the various media management
tools and all the ways possible to use them. Even experienced
FCP users, perhaps especially the recent converts from version
2 or even 1 will really get a lot out of the training on the
new media management tools. This all-encompassing approach is
excellent, as it showcases how well-setup FCP is for all kinds
of uses and all kinds of users, so the same thing can be achieved
in severals ways depending on the personal preferences of the
user. This section also covers all the preferences and what they
disc goes deeper into actually using Final Cut, from proper log
and capture to basic editing. Explanations and demonstrations
on three-point edits, all the options for making them, and backtiming
are invaluable. The "Working in the Timeline" and "Working
with Audio" are very good, and even as an experienced user
I learned a few things here. The section on transitions is good,
and explains the new real time transistions and filters well.
"Creating Final Output" shows the proper way to assemble
to tape, print to video, and even all the options for exporting
OMF, EDLs, batch lists (if you want to print out your logs or
keep them in a spreadsheet, for example) and all the quicktime
export features, from movie files to reference movies with chapter
markers for later use in DVD Studio Pro.
The final section, "Mastering",
gets much deeper into Final Cut, showing compositing, markers,
editing via storyboard, text tools, media management and subclip
use in depth. The last part of the DVD has several tutorials,
on things like speed changes, making a letterbox matte (sample
mattes are included on the first disc), travel mattes, soft focus
on edges (simulated swing/tilt), color correction mattes, and
even how to use iTunes for audio import.
There is also included softare called
"DVD@ccess" which alllows direct links from the DVD
to the web, but I didn't have time to try it.
Overall I would recommend this to all
beginners, and to any more experinced users who want to learn
more on proper use of Final Cut Pro 3, even if you just want
to learn the new features. It's easy to use, has an interface
that will make me come back to it again and again for reference,
and it is easy to carry if I want to take it on the road for
use in my Powerbook.
InSession Training Series:
Final Cut Pro 3 is the first "self paced title" to
be certified by Apple.
Donaldson: Tony is a sports photographer (still photography,
mostly extreme sports) with clients including Sports Illustrated
for Kids, ESPN the Magazine, Scholastic, eBike, and many more.
He also shoots, edits and produces video projects from commercials
to short films (Odessa or Bust, The Cypher) to the Redline Bicycles
Team video to a new video-based photography training series.
He lives and works in the Los Angeles area and spends way too
much time online learning all of Ken