I am looking to get into video editing, and had some questions hopefully someone with experience can help me with!
First, I do audio for film/television for a living, and am fairly well versed in much of the video terminology... At least more so than many other people I suppose. I am planning to teach myself the software and basic mechanics of video editing, and then eventually be able to market myself as a one-stop-shop for almost all post production services (video editing and audio post).
I am leaning towards Avid Media Composer over Final Cut, as my understanding is that Final Cut X was a huge let-down, and I am sure support for Final Cut 7 will probably going away at some point. I have pretty much made up my mind about this, but am open to any reasoning from people who know more than me if I should go FCP for some reason.
Anyways, my main question is about the Avid hardware and whether it is absolutely necessary. I am seeing that Avid will support hardware from Black Magic Designs. I am familiar with the Black Magic cards, as I use them for video playback out of Pro Tools for my audio work, etc. Is there something that the Mojo DX does that the Black Magic products don't do?
I imagine the hardware's main use is for ingesting video into the system from cameras, tapes, etc? Is the main feature of the hardware the quality of the digital converters? Is there something else I should be considering in the hardware?
I am sure that some of these answers will lead to more questions, and I am sure that there are questions that I just don't even know to ask yet. I am just trying to figure out if I need to spend almost $3,000 for the Mojo DX, or can I spend about half of that for the software and a 3rd party hardware unit that will work. Keeping in mind, of course, that I don't want to spend $1,500 now, only to have to spend the $3,000 later because the inexpensive route doesn't do what I need it to in 6 months.
Any help is greatly appreciated!
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Adobe Premiere Pro (older 64-bit versions) or Sony VEGAS Pro - work with lossless media
Adobe After Effects (older 64-bit versions) - work with lossles media
Get a better encoder than is found in Adobe. TMPGenc Video Mastering Works would do for starters, plus TMPGEnc Authoring Works
Be prepared for another ton of suggestions that will follow these.
If you want to produce this stuff for broadcast, you'll need more than $3500.
Last edited by sanlyn; 19th Mar 2014 at 09:28.
Basic agreement with sanlyn
By starting out with the free and cheap video software, you will ...
1 - learn the language
2 - learn the basics to playing with video files
3 - learn how much more there is to learn about this stuff
4 - decide if its really something you can do and succeed at.
At mimimum you'll need Windows (stick with W7 64-bit), an i5 or i7 Intel CPU 3500, preferably much faster. SATA-6 hard drives (about 3 in the PC at least, 250GB for the OS, two 750GB or 1TB drives for work and capture, and several external drives in fan-cooled enclosures for storage and archiving. Obviously a DVD drive/burner and a BD drive/burner. And a spare copy of your motherboard along with something like Paragon imaging software for system backups. After you get going with managing drive space you can get into RAID configurations for heavier HD work, so make sure you get a mobo that can handle it.
Avid Media Composer won't even scratch the surface of problems you'll encounter. For heavy-duty repair you'll end up with Avisynth and VirtualDub to learn what video is really about. As for "editing", that's pretty much a last step anyway. Something like Premiere Pro or After Effects will have more advanced color grading features, but Avisynth will have the basic color/noise/repair facilities. You'll have to learn to work with lossless media anyway for everything except straight copy-to-output work -- and just about any cheap cut/join editor can do that.
Once you get the innards of real a/v troubles down pat, gather up your big bucks and head for the pro shops. Likely you'll gear up at twice the $3500 you mentioned earlier, for starters, but you can always move up piece by piece. You might also want to browse a few of the past couple of months of posts in our Restoration forum and at the doom9 forum.
Last edited by sanlyn; 19th Mar 2014 at 09:29.
I get the feeling that OP isn't talking about the kind of work that sanlyn is describing. (Creating an edit from newly-shot material vs cleaning up old content.)
You want to talk to a user named Cornucopia, also EdTV but I'm not sure he posts here anymore. There are a couple others that are, or have been, involved in professional broadcast production.
I am assuming you are gearing solely for the pro market? That's not to say that some of the free tools mentioned are not useful ones you should have, just that the toolkit you are talking about is well beyond the reach and experience of most here.
Last edited by sanlyn; 19th Mar 2014 at 09:29.
As of right now, all I intend to do is basic editing. I am not looking to do color timing our visual effects, etc. (Maybe one day, but basic editing first).
I already have a beast for a computer that a tech friend of mine built me. Might need a little more ram, but that is minor compared to the hardware purchase I am looking at here.
Let me be a little more clear in my question. What are the benefits (if any) to buying the avid mojo dx over something like the blackmagic decklink studio?
I am aware that generally you get what you pay for. However, my experience with avid is in the audio realm and began back when they were still digidesign. There was a saying around the audio industry for a long time. "DPP", which stood for "digidesign protecting profits". Is the avid mojo unnecessarily expensive? Or does it actually do something that much better or different than any 3rd party hardware?
Last edited by inglesworth; 10th Jan 2014 at 12:11. Reason: typos
Inglesworth, I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that most of the regulars here are going to scoff at the idea of buying any proprietary hardware to do simple video editing. Really, today's computers don't need extra hardware to get the job done. Some software will use the GPUs of off-the-shelf video cards to assist in preview and rendering. But as you know from the audio world, the idea of having to buy purpose-built gear for the job of making digital media is now mostly outmoded.
I am completely aware of this model, as Avid has only recently began allowing 3rd party hardware support and the software is no longer proprietary o any specific hardware. However, the footage must be ingested into the computer somehow? I can't just wish for it to magically show up in the computer can I?
There has to be a hardware unit needed to be able to do this, correct?
why are you talking about final cut? are you using a mac as it's mac only software.
what's the source of your video going to be? most can be transferred from cam to comp without any extra hardware, except maybe a media card reader or firewire port.--
"a lot of people are better dead" - prisoner KSC2-303
For the nth time, with the possible exception of certain Intel processors, I don't have/ever owned anything whose name starts with "i".
Any clients you'd be editing for these days would be shooting in a digital format. At worst, you'd have to hook something up to Firewire. Most of the time you'll use a card reader to take digital files from the flash memory media to your hard disk. That's all there is to it.
If you're talking about needing some way to digitize analog video, you should also budget for a collection of high-end videotape players. If you were setting up a recording studio today, would you buy a 1/4" reel-to-reel machine? Doubtful. Everything today is recorded digitally. You're moving files, not audio. Same with the video world.
If you're in the broadcast audio world is it safe to assume you're using Pro Tools? If so, you're already in the Avid universe.
3rd party hardware on Avid deals with ingesting media --where it's increasingly unnecessary -- copying files, AMAing and transcoding cover almost everything these days, and monitoring to broadcast displays --which may or may not be an issue for you. Mojo BTW is pretty much history.
You may want to try out the free trial of Avid software only and see if it fits your needs.
If you're going to be using Avid, don't start with some consumer grade half-assed NLE, although the principles are the same, you may as well learn the Avid way to do it from the get go. FWIW, Premiere Pro works a lot like the old FCP7 and is gaining wider acceptance in the pro market.