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Migrating from Final Cut Pro 7 to Avid Media Composer 5.5 is a thorough comparison of the interfaces, concepts, tools, and workflow behind each of these two programs, covering the key differences video editors need to know to master Media Composer and make the switch. The course covers the basics of editing in Avid Media Composer, including sequence creation, project organization and navigation, importing and linking media, timeline editing techniques, and how to work with audio and add transitions and effects.
As a culmination of our study of editing tools and timeline functionality, we are now going to cover multi-cam editing. Multicam is a powerful tool that's also a microcosm of many of the things that we've covered in the course so far. There are two main ways that Multicam is used in production. The first way is to use multiple cameras to capture different angles of action on set or on location and then use those group clips to cut together a scene. The pace and the timing of the events in the scene will be based upon the editing of the action of dialog.
The other way to use Multicam is to capture multiple different angles of action, at for example a sports or music event and then cut between the different angles as the action plays out in real time. In Chapter 3 we mapped some multi-cam functionality to our custom tool palette here. We have got the Quad Split button, the Nine Split button, the Swap Camera Banks button, go to Previous in Group, go to Next in Group. By the way, go to Previous and Next are also mapped to your up and down arrows on your keyboard when you are in Multicam mode.
If we come over to the Project window and into the Settings tab, I can open up the keyboard settings, and you can see here that the default Keyboard settings are to have Multicam 1 through 4 mapped on F9 through F12. If I hold down the Shift key, you can see that 5 through 8 are also mapped to the same keys, but the shifted version of those keys. I prefer to map my multi-cam cameras in a different way, so what I am going to do is I am going to come back over to the Keyboard setting in the Settings tab.
Now I am going to use Command+D to duplicate that setting, and I am going to call one of them multi-cam. Now I am going to swap over and put the check mark next to the Multicam setting. Now I will use Command+3 to bring up the Command palette, and what I am going to do is create a special keyboard layout just for Multicam. So I am going to come over here to the Multicam tab, and now I'm going to use button-to-button reassignment to assign 1 to key 1, Multicam camera 2 to 2, and so on, there on my keyboard, so I can keep things pretty straight and easy when I am Multicam editing.
Just put 5 in there, 6 in here, 7, 8, and 9. And I am going to map Swap Camera Bank on to 0. Now I can close the Command palette and the Keyboard settings and we can move on to the next step of preparation. Now before going any further, I should point out the Multicam playback and performance is more demanding than regular editing, as there are more files or streams in action simultaneously. As such, the more your system meets or exceeds the minimum system requirements for Media Composer 5.5, then the easier time of it you will have.
In addition, if you're running you media or courseware from a fast external drive, you will again get much better performance than if you're storing your media on your internal Mac hard drive. If your system is struggling to play back multiple streams then try switching the video quality mode down to best performance, the yellow mode down here. If that doesn't work then the other thing you could try is going to your Format tab and switching you Format down to SD. And then worst case scenario, if you're on an older machine and you're using quite high-resolution footage, perhaps the best thing would be to switch to the SD tab and transcode your material into a smaller resolution and make your Multicam decisions with that material.
Another setting that we need to pay attention to when we are setting up for a Multicam edit is under the Composer menu, there is a MultiCam tab. Here I can set how the Multicam tool will show up in my display, either Fullscreen or Quad or Nine Split. I can also choose how the Multicam edit will show up on my client monitor if I have monitoring or I/O hardware attached to my system. Again, my Client Monitor could be showing the Line Cut or the Quad or Nine Split, or it could be switched off.
Okay, back to Bins, and in my bin here I would normally have synchronous material that's being shot at the same time, and hopefully it's got the same time code. Now in the real world it doesn't always work out that way, and this is the real world because I don't actually have synchronous material. But what I do you have, are a number of GoPro clips of footage from the motorcycle here. And what we will do is we will use these as our example of having multiple cameras to edit with.
So let's switch back text view because that is going to be easier for us to manage. Now if these really were synchronous clips with timecode then the timecode is what we are going to use to sync them up. If they didn't have synchronous timecode, but they were still synchronous clips then we would want to move through each clip and find a sync point and make an in point there. Since I don't have either of those luxuries, I am just going to go ahead and select all of my clips like so, and I am going to come down to the Fast menu, I am going to choose to Group Clips, which is Shift+Command+G. I get the choice of how I would like to sync them. In this particular case, I will just leave it on in point and I will go from the beginning of each clip, and there we go.
Now we have created a group clip, so let's go ahead and give that a meaningful name. We will call it motorcycle_group, like so. Now if I load this clip into the Source viewer, it really doesn't look any different to any other clip that I've loaded so far in the course, with the exception that it has this group clip icon next to it up here. The way to get Media Composer to display this as a Multicam group is to come down here and select either Quad Split or Nine Split.
If I am in Quad Split mode then obviously I can move backwards and forwards between my material using my up and down arrows. I can go to next in group, next in group. Now I've gone off the screen on to Camera 5 and Camera 6 and then when I press down again, I am going to come back to Camera 1. So if I actually want to see the other group, I am going to have to swap camera bank, and now when I move my selection down, I'll finally see it onscreen here. So I have got my two Camera Banks that I can swap backwards and forwards between, and I can use my 0 key on the keyboard to do that with when I am in Multicam mode. And then I can move backwards and forwards between previous clip and next clip in the group, like so.
The green bar is obviously indicating which camera is currently live, and of course I could also click inside the window here to make those selections as well. And then, using Shift+Command together, if I hold them down, I will get the names of my clips. Let's switch to the next Camera Bank, Shift+Command. I can see the names of my clips again. And of course I could also use my 1 through 9 keys on my keyboard to swap camera angles when I am in Multicam mode as well. Now if I use my spacebar on the keyboard, obviously I can play back the results of what I have got grouped in the Source viewer right now.
(video playing) (car revving) It's pretty loud though, so what I am going to do is I am going to go up to my Tools menu, I am going to bring up my Audio Mixer tool, and I am going to gang together A1 and A2, and I am going to drop the level down to maybe -8 or -9. Let's see how that is. (video playing) (car revving) Still pretty loud, so let's just drop it down a little bit further like that. Okay, so we won't deafen ourselves as we go through and do our Multicam edit.
Now that also brings up an important point. If I click up here at the top of the Source viewer, you can see that not only I have got a choice between which camera is currently active visually, but I also have a choice of what audio I am currently using as well, and I also have this choice up here, Audio Follow Video. I will leave this off if I am really just cutting different video angles to a soundtrack, for example. But if I was cutting a dialog scene then I'd probably want to switch on Audio Follow Video.
Now when I edit in some picture, I will edit in the audio which belongs to that at the same time. Okay, so that's most of the preparation that we need to do in order to begin a Multicam edit. In the next video, we will actually perform the Multicam edit and see how that works.
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