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Final Cut Pro Quick Tip #3

Import your music the right way By Stephen Schleicher
Need to import audio files into your Final Cut Pro 3 project? At some point you will need to, and who wants to spend valuable time flipping through four different manuals to find the answer?

Did you know you can import a CD audio track directly into Final Cut Pro 3, without having to render the clip? You can by simply popping the CD into the CD-ROM/DVD Superdrive and importing the track just like any other file. There is of course a catch, the moment you eject the CD the clip goes offline.

Depending on which version of Final Cut Pro 3 you have, your documentation may say that you cannot import MP3 files. This is not necessarily true. I am running the latest version of Final Cut Pro 3, and can import MP3 files without a problem. The problem arises when you add the clip to the timeline. First you have to render the clip, and the second is that because of the compression rate, you will get weird pops and glitches when you play the clip back.

There is a better way to deal with importing audio files if they come from CD, MP3, Wav, or other audio format.

Launch QuickTime and import the audio track you want to use.

From the QuickTime File menu choose export (command+E), and select the target drive (probably a folder you have created especially for music).

There are a two ways you can export your audio; either as an AIFF file, or a QuickTime movie file. Both work just as well.

The key to converting the audio files correctly lies in the Export/Options menu. Audio recorded on CD is recorded at 44.1kHz. Audio in Final Cut Pro 3.0 can be either 32kHz, or 48kHz. Most projects (especially those that are DV) will use the 48kHz rate.

Turn the compressor to None, since we dont want to compress the file further.

Change the rate to 48kHz, and use 16-bit stereo.

If you dont change these export options, during any future audio conversions you can use the Most Recent Settings option.

Use this same process for MP3s, Wav, and any other audio format that you want to use in your next Final Cut Pro project.

Since we are on the subject of music. If you have DVD Studio Pro, you should check out the FreePlay music library that comes as part of the package. Nearly 1.3 GB of MP3 files that you can use freely in your Final Cut Pro projects. Use the steps outlined above with these music clips and youll have a huge assortment of music for your next FCP Project.

Hope this quick tip helps you out in your next edit project. If you want to read the Final Cut Pro Quick Tip #2, click here.

Stephen Schleicher is the producer for www.digitalanimators.com and www.digitalwebcast.com. When not working deep in the labs of the DMN Central Division testing the latest and greatest software/hardware products he can be found at the local university teaching a few courses on video and web production. He can be reached at stephens@digitalmedianet.com

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Stephen Schleicher is a well known writer, visual effects artist and media guru! You can see more of Stephen at
www.majorspoilers.com and www.stephenschleicher.com
Related Keywords:Final Cut Pro 3, audio, import, convert, quicktime, stephen schleicher, apple

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