Get a new Final Cut Pro X technique every Friday to help you take full advantage of the array of features offered in this video editing software.
- [Jeff] Here we are at Final Cut Pro X Weekly. I'm Jeff. - [Nick] And I am Nick. - [Jeff] And we're going to talk today about some perfect slow-mo shooting high frame rates. - [Nick] You saw what I did there, with the name, going really slow? - [Jeff] Oh, no, I didn't. (laughing) Let's talk about the key concepts today. We're going to talk about what it means to shoot footage at a higher frame rate, and we're going to look at it particularly in the iPhone, but we'll also talk about some other camera stuff. We're going to talk about setting up that timeline right, getting our frame rate at normal frame rate speeds.
- [Nick] We're going to talk about whether we apply automatic settings, which we can easily do from the Retime menu, or whether we do the math in particular instances where our actual slow motion is baked into the footage. - [Jeff] And then we're just going to talk about that baked in sort of characteristic, where, how do we get the stuff that's permanently slow to be at a normal speed. Now, to start with, I want to just look at our iPhone for a moment, and I'm assuming that if you own your Macintosh and you own Final Cut X, odds are probably in my favor you have an iPhone.
The iPhone's camera, for a while, past I think the 5 or 5s, certainly in the 6 and 6s, can shoot higher frame rates, and this is found in your settings under photos and camera. I have a 7. You can see, I can shoot 1080 at 120 frames per second, or what I did a bunch of is 720 at 240 frames per second, and the question is is how slow do you want the footage. If I take 720 at 240 and I put it in a 24 frame timeline I'm getting 10% speed looking perfect.
In a 30 frame timeline it's 12%. It's gorgeous, because we're not doing any frame interpolation, and the key concept is to have a normal timeline speed. So let's start looking into this. - [Nick] Sounds great. - [Jeff] So here in Final Cut Pro I've got a couple clips. Two of them are at high frame rates. Two of them are baked in. Let's look at the high frame rate stuff first. - [Nick] Now I believe the two slow frame rates filmed with the iPhone are the ones in the middle, correct Jeff? - [Jeff] They are, correct. In fact, I've gone as far as to make a keyword collection, so let's just look at those for a moment.
- [Nick] Oh, fantastic, so your 240 frames per second, the 720p clips you filmed with your iPhone are located right here inside that keyword collection. - [Jeff] Sure and if I go ahead and I cue one of them up, if I actually hit play, they seem normal speed, because Final Cut is playing them back at 240 frames per second. Let's examine that. Let's go ahead and look at it in our inspector. And when I go ahead and I get to the movie properties here at the top, you can see that it's at 240 frames per second.
- [Nick] Yup, right there at the top on the top left-hand corner there, the 1280, 720p, 240 frames per second. - [Jeff] Just as a nice variant, if you're doing a lot of this sort of work, I'm just going to close my inspector a moment. I just want to go ahead and I'm going to switch this over to a list view. - [Nick] And just to note, this is one of my favorite views in certain instances for a couple reasons. One is that you get a ton of meta data information about your clips right inside this little browser here. Number two, just at the top here you'll notice that the selected clip actually shows, and you're able to then make your range selection up here, or your in and out points on your clip.
- [Jeff] I'm going to right-click here and I'm going to add video frame rate. I'll have to scroll over for it, and then I'm going to take that video frame rate and slide it off to the left. And because we're looking at these two clips, I'm going to look at all the clips in this project, and you can see my two high frame rate clips, and my two baked in shots, and I've also built a keyword collection for my baked in shots. So I'm just going to select part of this clip. I'll mark an in and mark an out point, and this is one of the rare times I'm not going to use one of my editing tools, like extend the timeline, E, append to the timeline.
I'm going to pull it down 'cause I want you to see something that occurs here. What occurs is this popup. It says, hey, whatever the timeline was set to doesn't match what the clip is, and that's just fine. I actually don't want it to match. I want it to be a 1080 or 720, whichever you prefer. It's going to scale up my 720 material, and I want it to be 2997. If I play a 240 clip at 240 frames per second, it plays normal. If I play a 240 clip at 60 frames per second, it's going to play at 1/4 speed.
Traditionally, when we have been editing, we work at either 2398, that's that sort of filming standard, if you're in Europe, you might edit in PAL rates at 25p, but we're going to want to edit at 2997, and I know 30 is there, I know 50 and 60 is there, this is probably what you want. - [Nick] Now, if you're filming PAL, the slow motion frame rates available to you on that camera are going to be slightly different than the ones that are presented to us on the NTSD versions that we have here in North America.
If you notice the 120 frames per second, or the 240 frames per second, that number, that 2997, is divisible into those numbers which makes it great for slow motion. - [Jeff] The math is still 30, it's just these are the professional numbers we work in in film and television. Pretty much, you should stick with those timing standards. I'm going to go ahead here and say, OK. And, just so you're aware, when you come up and you say, a new project, if you choose custom settings here at the bottom, you get that same concept.
You get the same reveal where you can plan it in advance. - [Nick] And that's how you set up your project today, right Jeff? - [Jeff] That's how I set up the project today. I'm going to hit cancel. Our shot's in here. I'm also going to grab the other shot. It's a really kind of a cool shot of a guy jumping in front of the sun. When I bring this clip down, it's E for append. I think of it as extend because that's the natural language, it's extending the length of the timeline, but the proper name for it is append with the letter A.
E is the keyboard equivalent. And I've hit a Shift+Z here so we can see the whole timeline. - [Nick] I love that shortcut. - [Jeff] I'm going to go ahead play this. It's playing normal speed. I'm going to right away for this first clip just click on it, and I'm going to choose underneath our Retime menu the word Automatic. What this word Automatic here is going to do is it's going to automatically just natively turn it into one frame against the frame rate, so the 240 clip is going to become gigantic.
- [Nick] And I'm seeing just right here looking at the clip that it looks like it's just over four seconds long. - [Jeff] So we're expecting it to be about 40 seconds. And I'm going to go ahead here and you can see the speed is now 12%. I'm going to hit a Shift+Z, and the length of the clip is nearly 35 seconds in length. When I play it back, it's gorgeous looking. Let's in fact make our viewer just a little bit bigger there so we can really see that.
And there we've got Automatic doing its work for us. I just want to show a variation on that that I think is really nice. Zooming in, Command+Plus, Command+Plus, Command+Plus. I'm just going to scroll that over, and I'm going to use the range tool, R, and I'm just going to take the moment where he jumps in front of the sun. So, say, right about here. Let's pull this back just a little bit further. And I can use that same automatic setting. I can just come up. I don't have to do any real tricks for this.
I can say, Automatic Speed, and it's figured out that length. Once again, I'm going to do a Command+Plus, I mean a Command+Minus, Command+Minus. Let's play that back a second, and you can just see it go from 100% to slow, back to 100. Loads of fun. - [Nick] So, a couple cool things here. On the first clip, that's known as a constant speed rate clip where the speed is constant throughout the clip, and right here, Jeff, because you made a selection, that's known as a variable speed rate clip, and I see these little, they're kind of like little handles on the range of the clip around the 100% going to the 12%, what are those? - [Jeff] Those are the idea of the transition that it's not just going from 100 to slow, it's transitioning through those moments, and that you can also adjust what goes on.
And this is a good time to point out there's some great other courses in the library, including one I did entirely on speed changes. - [Nick] Very cool, and you can find out tons of more information on this, working with high frame rate clips along with just working with slow motion in general. - [Jeff] I want to now go ahead and take a look at our other piece, these things that were baked in. So, this is kind of the opposite problem. These clips, they happen to run at, they say they're 2997, Nick, you shot them, again, I think they're 120? - [Nick] Yes, they're 120 frames per second.
I shot them on the Sony a7S II, and they're recorded without sound 'cause that's what the internal recording is set to. And, as you can see, they got interpreted at the 2997 frame rate there with the column. - [Jeff] I'm going to go ahead and bring down that clip, and I just want to take a look here, I'm just going to play it. Kind of the neat thing about footage that's already baked in slow is just when you hit play. you can see that bird has just got a beautiful slow-mo going to it. What I want is kind of now the opposite of what we've seen.
I want to speed this clip up, and if it's 120, and we're working in essentially 30 frames per second, the number you're looking for is four times faster, everybody. For those of you keeping score at home, I don't want to talk percentage, and I'll show you why. I'm going to go up here to that same speed menu under the word Fast. It's got a 4x already built in, I don't have to do any math. If you wanted to do math, you could use custom. You could also go ahead and hit a Command+R and change the speed manually.
I'm going to go ahead here and say four speed, and now it's going to put this back to normal speed playback. That's how fast it actually moved. - [Nick] Wow, and just like that, like, you didn't even have to go inside, or press Command+R, drag it out. You had that preset 4x speed ready to go there in the timeline, very cool. - And now I can do the same thing where I choose a range. And if I wanted to slow down that section, I could go up to my speed menu, and I could say, put it back to normal speed, and now it's normal in the middle, slowed down, and we have the same result we had it before.
- [Nick] We've got those speed transition handles again, too, which is just great. Transition between that 400% and 100% speed. - [Jeff] Yeah, it looks really natural. It has a gorgeous transition. So, if you're doing anything that's going to have action and you want that really cool look, sure, you could do all sorts of slow-downs that had frame blending, that have optical flow, but, better yet, if you shot it in slow motion at a high frame rate, you could bring it into Final Cut and just get it to look gorgeous and perfect compared to the other methods.
- [Nick] That's great. Once again, I'm Nick. - [Jeff] And I'm Jeff, and this is Final Cut X Pro Weekly. - [Nick] Thanks for watching.
- Maximizing your color board
- Mastering speed effects
- Working with Compressor
- Learning helpful keyboard shortcuts
- Uploading videos to the web
- Setting up workspaces