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In Avid Media Composer 5 Getting Started, author Steve Holyhead explores the tools and techniques in Media Composer for producing great looking video, as well as the basics of high definition media formats. This course walks through the video production workflow from input to editing to output, covers key information such as trim concepts and frame rates, and introduces techniques such as color correction, footage stabilization, and real-time audio effects. Exercise files accompany the course.
After you've done all your work, you'll want the world to see your final piece. Maybe you need to get in onto YouTube, or you want to record your final back to your camera, or else you'll want to output a file so you can create a DVD. Whatever the end goal, Media Composer provides a range of output options and tools. There are numerous ways to get your final project out of Media Composer. If you have hardware options connected to your Media Composer system, then you can play your final sequence out as a video feed to an HD or SD Video Tape Recorder.
Even without hardware attached to your system, you can still output via FireWire to your camera or tape deck. Alternatively, you can write back file- based media, such as Panasonic P2 or Sony XDCAM, to specific cameras or card-reading hardware. You can also create a very basic DVD, direct from the Timeline. Here, we are going to cover two processes for creating multimedia files direct from the Timeline. The first method we'll look at is creating a multimedia file using the Media Composer Export dialog.
I've already mixed down all of my video onto video track 6. I've also already mixed down all of my audio onto stereo audio track 9. As a result, I'm just going to leave those two tracks enabled, and I'm going to mark my sequence: end out, home in. Now I'm going to get it to my Timeline in my bin, select it and right-click. Here, I can go to Export. I'm going to choose the desktop as the location to put my file.
Next, I'm going to go to the Options dialog here. At the very top, I can choose what type of output I'd like to create: an Audio file, a Windows Media, an AVI, a QuickTime Movie, DV Stream, HDV or a QuickTime reference. I'm going to choose AVI, in this particular case. I've got Video Format options, including Codec options, and I've also got Width and Height. I'm going to choose 1280x720. I'm going to choose 601/709. Frames per second is 24. Double-check my audio format: stereo, 16 bit.
I can even go ahead and Save this as a custom setting for use later. And now I can go ahead and render the file out. Once that's done, if I look on my desktop, there's my AVI file, ready for playback. (Clip playing.) There we go.
Let's go back to Media Composer. I'd like to show you another method for exporting multimedia files. This time, I'm going to go back to my bin, right-click and go to Export again. I'm going to choose the desktop as my Output location and choose Options. This time, I'm going to go to QuickTime Reference. Now this is important distinction. QuickTime Movie would render another file, just like when we created our AVI file a few seconds ago. A QuickTime Reference, however, reads the Timeline and doesn't have to generate any media.
It creates an encapsulated file that can then be loaded into another application, and that application can be used for batch encoding. I'm going to choose Use Marks and Use Enabled Tracks. I'm going to select 16.9, I'm going to deselect Mixdown Audio Tracks, and I'm going to select 601/709 for Video Color space. Now, I'm going to save this out to the desktop. It didn't take hardly any time at all, because we're not generating a new file; instead, the file on the desktop is actually reading the media from the Media Composer Timeline.
(Video playing.) So now, I can take this file and put it into a third-party application for batch encoding. So, what I'm going to do is come down here to my Start menu. I'm going to search for Sorenson. I just downloaded a free 30 day Trial of Sorenson Squeeze. Of course, if I was on a Mac, I could also use Compressor. Now that Squeeze is open, all I need to do is take my QuickTime Reference movie, drag it and drop it into the view area here.
I can scrub through it to make sure that I can see in here all of my media and now remember, we haven't rendered a file yet. This is being read directly live from the Media Composer Timeline through the QuickTime Reference movie. Well this is great because, as you can see, though there are a large number of different file types you can export from Media Composer, here in Sorenson, there are many more. For example, here I've got Flash presets. Let's apply one of those. Underneath that, I've got MPEG-4 presets.
Let's apply one of those. I've even got Windows Media presets. Let's apply one of those. So, wherever I'm going, whether I'm going to a mobile device, or I'm going to the web, or I'm going to a DVD, I've got the option here to do a full batch encode of all different file types, from a single QuickTime Reference movie. It's a very, very efficient way to go. Finally, I'm just going to right-click on the destination, modify the output directory, select the desktop, click OK, and then squeeze it.
And you can see here, the files are beginning to render and crop up on the desktop. We've now output our files to the desktop using Sorenson Squeeze, and we've finished our project. Media Composer has the tools to help you create whatever output types you need in order to complete your project and release it to the world.
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