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Newbie to this world

Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 3:19pm

Post 1 of 16

MrRawlin

Force: 400 | Joined: 3rd Nov 2009 | Posts: 2

CompositeLab Pro User

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Hello, I recently purchased a green screen kit with Composite lab. I will be using the equiptment and software in an elementary school setting to enhance student reports and presentations. My problem is that I am still lost after watching the tutorials!...anyhow, heres a couple questions:
1. how do i know what template to use when beginning a new project? ( we use a canon gl-2 mini dv camera)
2. would I use the framerate of 25 or 29?
3. Is there a way to dump videodirectly from the camera into compositeLab?

these are the first of thousands of questions I have!..please help!
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 3:30pm

Post 2 of 16

Axeman

Force: 17995 | Joined: 20th Jan 2002 | Posts: 6124

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SuperUser

Rating: +1

Hi there, and welcome to FXhome.

1. Every camera uses specific settings when recording footage; you need to determine what settings your camera uses, and select the corresponding settings when creating a CompositeLab project. A bit more information can be found in this knowledgebase article, but its not possible to actually tell you which settings to use, as each camera will be different. Even just considering the GL-2, which settings you use will depend on whether you shoot in fullscreen or widescreen, and whether you use frame mode or standard interlaced.

2. If you are using an NTSC system (USA), use 30. If you are using a PAL system (Europe), use 25.

3. No. You have to use your video editor to capture the footage. Then export whatever bits you need to work with in CompositeLab.
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 3:40pm

Post 3 of 16

Fxhome Dude

Force: 996 | Joined: 1st Jun 2009 | Posts: 927

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Axeman wrote:


3. No. You have to use your video editor to capture the footage. Then export whatever bits you need to work with in CompositeLab.
That's rather confusing. I would think you would use you video editor to cut down the footage you don't need to edit.
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 4:35pm

Post 4 of 16

Simon K Jones

Force: 27955 | Joined: 1st Jan 2002 | Posts: 11683

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FXhome Team Member

Wes the fxhome dude wrote:

Axeman wrote:


3. No. You have to use your video editor to capture the footage. Then export whatever bits you need to work with in CompositeLab.
That's rather confusing. I would think you would use you video editor to cut down the footage you don't need to edit.
That's pretty much exactly what Axeman said.
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 5:12pm

Post 5 of 16

spydurhank

Force: 1956 | Joined: 24th Jun 2008 | Posts: 1357

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Yeah dude... that's exactly what Axeman said. That's not confusing at all.
He answerd the OP's 3rd question with a "no" because the software cannot do that... that's why you need to capture the footage via an NLE,
then export the bits that need work into Compositelab.
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 5:20pm

Post 6 of 16

Fxhome Dude

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The reason I said that was that generally for me I think of capture as in recording footage with a camera.
I use digital video files so I am guessing you are referring to DV tape? That needs to be cut down to useable bits?
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 6:34pm

Post 7 of 16

spydurhank

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It does not depend on whether you are capturing your footage via fire wire for a camera that records to dv tape or a camera that records to a memory card... either way you still have to import that footage into your hard drive for editing.
So once again... it doesn't matter whether the footage came from a dv tape or if it is digital or not or what your translation of capturing footage is because none of those things matter because that's not what the OP asked.

By reading the OP's 3rd question... the answer is apparent and very painfully and simply obvious. "No" you cannot take any and or both types of the kind of footage that we've been discussing, directly from your camera and into the Lab products which is what the OP's 3rd question was. You have to import "capture" it, edit it, convert it to .mov or avi file to even be able to use said footage in the Lab products. I'm not being a jerk but this should be obvious to you seeing as how you've stated in a previous thread that you've mastered Visionlab in only 8 months. I understand that you were confused by the term "capture" and maybe even "record" which is not a big deal, you just misunderstood something that's all. Here's a short explanation for you.

When you "capture" footage from a camera that records to dv tape via firewire... If you have an hour of footage on a dv tape, it's going to take you an hour to capture or "import" that footage to your hard drive because you have to physically play back the dv tape in order to capture it to your hard drive where as a memory card... it only takes a few seconds to import it into your hard drive. That's when you would then go through all the other steps of editing and converting then importing your footage into the Lab products for whatever effects you need. Make sense?
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 6:54pm

Post 8 of 16

Fxhome Dude

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Oh yea...
Makes sense.
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 6:58pm

Post 9 of 16

spydurhank

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Cool. biggrin
Also I forgot to mention this... It's awesome that the OP is doing this to teach kids and help them in the learning progress. I wish him or her the best of luck, Very, very excellent idea. biggrin
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 9:42pm

Post 10 of 16

Fxhome Dude

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And OP means?
Posted: Mon, 23rd Nov 2009, 11:26pm

Post 11 of 16

spydurhank

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MrRawlin... The Original Poster guy of this thread.
Posted: Tue, 24th Nov 2009, 12:53am

Post 12 of 16

Axeman

Force: 17995 | Joined: 20th Jan 2002 | Posts: 6124

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SuperUser

Yeah, OP stands for Original Poster, the person who started the thread.

As to the word 'capture,' this is one of many cases in film/video production where the same term is used for different things. Generally, Capturing refers to the process whereby footage is transferred from your camera to your computer. However, it is also at times used to refer to the process of capturing something on film, or filming it. Neither one is incorrect. However, it is more common to use the terms 'recording' or 'filming' in the second case.

Sorry for the confusion.
Posted: Tue, 24th Nov 2009, 1:25am

Post 13 of 16

Fxhome Dude

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Axeman wrote:


Sorry for the confusion.
No problem at all...
Posted: Tue, 24th Nov 2009, 2:46pm

Post 14 of 16

MrRawlin

Force: 400 | Joined: 3rd Nov 2009 | Posts: 2

CompositeLab Pro User

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I would like to thank you all for imputs!...This is very helpful.

a few more questions:

1. i movie made me import an entire 6 minute video into CompLab when all i wanted was a clip from it. Is there a way I can get just the clip i need? ...Or is my only choice to use the cropping scrubbers once its in the media area of the workspace?

2. Is imovie the best place to store media clips for importing into compLab?

3. Can you recommend a source for background video clips?..I would like to obtain a collection of national and international scenes to put behind the students while they are reporting in front of the green screen.

4. Is this program, CompLab, considered a beginner program or am I in over my head?

5. If anyone has any advice for me, i am most appreciative.

Thanks again!...Dave
Posted: Tue, 24th Nov 2009, 3:04pm

Post 15 of 16

Fxhome Dude

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Hey, glad the tips helped you.
1. There are 2 ways to go about this. Although I am not familar with imovie I imagine you can cut down the video length in imovie and then export. Using the crop tools would do the trick in c-lab, and it is what I normal do.
2. For someone like you i would stick to imovie for now. If you are looking to do some serious filming you will need something like vegas or adobe.
3. www.istockphoto.com is a great source for video clips. you can use images as well, which would be alot cheaper. Try www.footagefirm.com
4. For someone like you composite lab is excellent. While the learning curb isn't too steep you can do some incredible effect with it. It is alot easeir to learn that somehithing like adobe. Once you get the hang of it, it's a cinch.
5. Browse around the knowledge base, here . It'll help alot
Have a good day.
Posted: Wed, 25th Nov 2009, 3:09pm

Post 16 of 16

rogolo

Force: 5436 | Joined: 29th May 2005 | Posts: 1513

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For your background needs, Footage Firm offers many "free" HD stock footage collections, many of which would be great for compositing behind your talent. However, while the discs are "free", they charge ~$8.50 for shipping and handling. Still, a fine deal if you are in the market high-quality HD stock of this nature.

And since you asked for advice, I'll give you this little nugget that seems to be overlooked partially or in its entirety by many new users: FXhome is a remarkable company in that they offer many levels of support and resources for their users, and much of it is completely free. For starters, they maintain an ever-growing database of presets for the Lab products to easily share effects, as well as a modest selection of sound effects and a larger (but dated) collection of still images/movie clips called 'plugins'. To bridge the gap between learning and support, there is lengthy list of free video tutorials, which are highly recommended for beginners. There is also a growing number of written tutorials in the Knowledgebase, which is also the best resource for troubleshooting any problems you may encounter in CL. There are great guides from members of the community, like this one or this one which are informative and helpful to anyone looking to learn the basics of filmmaking. FXhome also offers in-depth tutorial DVDs to help you unleash the full power of the programs. And if you should ever have any problems with CL, the brand new Support center will surely help you out. If all of that fails, feel free to post on these Self-Help Forums. smile

Lastly, if you feel like making a bit of chit chat, feel free to come by the forums and join in on the community.