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Outputting with Final Cut Pro

Using a FireWire deck to output your edited projects with pinpoint accuracy By Lowell Kay
Final Cut Pro tutorialMost people who are using Final Cut Pro are working in mini DV or DVCam. When outputting your materials, it is a simple procedure if you have all your media online. Go to Print to Video and then crash record to your deck. What if you want to hit the 1 hour mark with frame accuracy? This will involve some slightly different procedures, but can be done with the proper equipment.

First, you are going to need a frame accurate deck that can accept Firewire input. The decks that we have had success with are the Sony DSR 1500, DSR 1800 and the DSR 2000. Each deck has to upgraded to include this feature, so be careful if you are ordering one of these decks to make sure that you include it in your purchase. The card is simple to install and requires a Phillips head screwdriver.
Final Cut Pro tutorial, fig. 1

Once you have your deck set up, you will need to check for offsets and device control. Since you have a deck that can be controlled by either RS422 or Firewire, you will need to make a choice. The most accurate way to control the deck is to use RS422. To do this, go to the Audio/Video Preferences and check the Device controls tab. In there you will see a drill down menu to select the type of device control that you will be using. If you have a Stealth card in your system, you will be able to control your deck with RS422. Choose LTC+VITC and then the Stealth port.
Final Cut Pro tutorial, fig. 2

Now that you have changed your setting to the device control, you need to make sure that you have the correct setting on the deck. The DSR 1500 is menu driven and can be confusing to most. Because of this, we do not recommend this deck for rentals. The DSR 1800 and 2000 are much easier to use. All three decks are configured from the factory with RS422 as the default setting. If you have changed the settings, go back to the remote menu and change the device control to either RS422 or iLink depending on what your particular configuration requires.

Now that you have configured the deck you will need to check the device control offsets, both Capture and Playback. Most people know about the Capture offset but forget about the Playback offset. Use both of these to offset any discrepancies that there might be when either laying off to tape or bringing in media. To check for offset discrepancies, use a tape that has burned in time code at the bottom of the picture. Capture a 5 second clip and then check to make sure that the timecode in the upper right hand corner and that of the clip match. If they do, change nothing. Most cases, there will have to be an offset change. Enter this value +/- in the Capture Offset window. Capture another 5 second clip and verify that there are no discrepancies.

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Related Keywords:Digital video editing, Final Cut Pro, mini DV, DVCam, outputting your materials, simple procedure, media online, Lowell Kay, President of the Dr. Rawstock Digital Education Center, how-to, tutorial, outputting

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