Photography Video Workflow: Final Cut Pro + Canon 5D Mark II

with Frank Rohmer
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Photography Video Workflow: Final Cut Pro + Canon 5D Mark II
Video duration: 0s 2h 22m Intermediate


Photography Video Workflow: Final Cut Pro + Canon 5D Mark II is designed for anyone who wants to shoot high-definition video with the Canon 5D Mark II and create a finished product using Final Cut Pro. The course focuses on the unique workflow that is used with the Canon 5D Mark II and Final Cut Pro. Instructor Frank Rohmer teaches the steps required to take a project from start to finish, imparting the basic and intermediate knowledge that will allow users to comfortably edit HD footage.

Photography Video Workflow: Final Cut Pro + Canon 5D Mark II was created and produced by Frank Rohmer. We are honored to host his material in the library.

Topics include:
  • Preparing system hardware for editing HD footage
  • Creating a Canon 5D Mark II project preset for HD video
  • Transferring and importing Canon HD video files into Final Cut Pro
  • Editing with three-point edits, drag and drop, and automated techniques
  • Understanding transitions and filters for HD video
  • Converting non-drop frame to drop frame for broadcasting
  • Finishing a project out to DVD, Windows Media, Flash, or QuickTime
Photography Video
Final Cut Pro


Before we begin with the lessons, I would like to point out a few things regarding your system setup and this training series. So first of all because the Canon 5D Mark II produces high- definition video at a resolution of 1920X1080P at 30 frames a second, I strongly recommend that you use an external fast FireWire drive or a separate internal fast drive to store all of your Final Cut Pro projects and the media files onto. So don't make the typical mistake that most new editors make. They simply use the internal hard drive on a standard Apple computer as their only hard drive to store their Final Cut Pro projects on and their media on and that will work.

However, I've got to warn you now your system will struggle. You see, during the process of editing when you play those native HD files just by themself that will probably work just fine. However, whenever you start to edit such as when you do little things like when you add a transition between two high-definition video streams, at that point your system is temporarily playing two high-definition video stream at the same time. That means that you are going to be demanding twice the amount of data from that single drive.

So if you use your internal system drive to attempt this request you will be pushing your system to the outer limits. You will then experience little things like stuttering during playback or complete pauses during playback. So if you use an external or separate fast drive to store all your HD media files on, you will decrease the stutter that you will experience during playback. As a matter of fact you eliminate it all together by using a fast external drive or a fast separate internal drive for those of you that are using tower computers. This alone will make a big difference during your editing process.

Now, remember Final Cut Pro allows you to have multiple layers and video while you are editing. In fact it's very typical to have as many as ten layers of video playing back at the same time. So having a drive to handle multiple video streams at the same time is crucial. Let's backup though, if you decide to edit with just your single drive in your computer system that will be fine, because when you export your movie out as a finished movie, in other words when you change the codec when you export out to a .mov or a Flash file or even a .wmv, you merge all those layers down to one video stream and that really makes the difference when your client or when you want to view the movie, because it's now one stream. So if you can live with the stuttering with that single drive then that's fine you can keep going.

So let's talk about something else, I also recommend installing as much RAM into your computer as possible. And doing this will increase the overall performance of your computer when multiple applications are open. Now as for the lessons in this training series, I wanted to create them to get you in and out of Final Cut Pro as quickly as possible with as little time and energy as possible. The goal is not to just teach you the tool, but it's to teach you the tool and have you apply the tool so that you actually build a real world project and you will actually have a finished movie when you complete this training series. It makes a lot of sense to have you building something while you are learning the tool, while you are applying the tools. It just helps everything sink in so much quicker.

So have fun with this training series and you will quickly be on your way to editing and creating within Final Cut Pro.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Photography Video Workflow: Final Cut Pro + Canon 5D Mark II .

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Q: In the sequence in the "Auto sequence setup" chapter, the QuickTime video setting is set to H.264, after the instructor prompts us to import the movie into ProRes422 or similar. Therefore, my movie will be 422 and my QuickTime video compressor sequence setting is  H.264. Shouldn’t the sequence be set to the same codec as the movie that has been imported?
A: The general rule is that you should edit your footage in the same codec that it was shot in unless you are shooting with a codec like H.264 (Canon, HDSLR cameras). Outside of the HDSLR circle, professional videographers will select a video camera that they believe has the best codec to shoot in. Once that selection has been made they'll typically leave the codec alone while editing.
In the case of Canon HDSLRs, the codec is very challenging to work with, hence the reason for transcoding to ProRes 422. Because H.264 is extremely tough for all editing systems, Canon recommends transcoding their H.264 native codec to ProRes 422. You don't have to do this. Final Cut Pro will edit either way.
Even if the sequence settings are different then the codec used, Final Cut Pro will allow you to go either way. You always have a choice. That's one of many reasons to use Final Cut Pro.
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