Apple has disappointed the pro world once again !

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How many times can one company upset its core professional community by so called “updating” a rather tired design.

Apple had their WWDC yearly outing yesterday and announced “retina” screen MacBook Pros and MacBook Air with no mention of the MacPro which the pro video/graphics community were hoping for.

Thunderbolt was to be the big inclusion with a hopefully new radical design but true to recent form Apple did a slight update to the innards with no Thunderbolt or USB-3.

The chaps over at MacRumours have given us an insight for a new MacPro design coming 2013…

Mac Rumours…

“Yesterday, David Pogue of The New York Times vaguely stated in reference to Apple’s desktop Mac lines that an unnamed Apple executive had informed him that “new models and new designs are under way, probably for release in 2013.” That information was taken to include both Mac Pro and iMac models, but was not explicitly clear.

Soon after we posted the article, we received a report from a reader who had emailed Apple CEO Tim Cook about his disappointment in the lack of a significant Mac Pro update yesterday, with Cook responding to indicate that users can expect significant upgrades next year.

Our pro customers are really important to us…don’t worry as we’re working on something really great for later next year.

Forbes now follows up with additional corroboration of both Mac Pro and iMac updates coming down the road, with the updates likely appearing next year. The information was provided directly by an Apple spokesperson.

An Apple spokesman just told me that new models and new designs of the Mac Pro, as well as the iMac desktop, are in the works and will likely be released in 2013. That confirms what New York Times columnist David Pogue said yesterday, citing an unnamed Apple executive, about Apple’s commitment to its desktop computers.

There was considerable disappointment from Apple’s professional workstation users yesterday when Apple introduced only a very minor update to the Mac Pro, with Apple even taking the unusual step of removing the “New” designation on the Mac Pro in its online store today.

In light of the disappointing update with processors that are still several years old, we have tweaked our Buyer’s Guide recommendations to suggest that users able to hold off until next year for a more significant update do so instead of purchasing the just-updated but still outdated Mac Pro models.

Update: Apple PR has reached out and clarified that only the Mac Pro is expected to be next updated in 2013. The company had no comment about the iMac, which perhaps means that the iMac could see updates earlier than next year. It has been 406 days since the iMac last received an update, significantly longer than the traditional iMac update interval.”

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Canon EOS C300 Menu Simulator

Categories: Miscellaneous 1 Comment

A fantastic free resource from Canon is their new C300 Menu Simulator though I would prefer it as a downloadable iPad/iPhone APP to avoid having to rely on the internet.


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Program 4 in HD

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You will need to press the VIMEO lettering in order to see it in HD

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

The Olympic torch heads through Rutherglen with a RED EPIC

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Its not every day the Olympic torch comes to Rutherglen but today was our turn and what a great turn out, the streets were heaving with people.

This shot said it all 7-10 deep bulging onto the road everyone wants a shot of the torch as it runs along Rutherglen main street.

I caught this chap filming the event with a Sony PMW-EX3 though I did note the lack of rain cover, not clever as it was raining quite heavily on and off all afternoon. This is a perfect case for a Sony NX70 with its onboard weather proofing.

I caught this film crew filming for “Scenic Scotland” with a RED EPIC on a steadycam outfit, the lens was a RED 18-50mm T3 zoom lens. I approached the camera operator and told him I had a Canon C300 he smiled and said it was nice of Canon to announce the 4K C500 soon after the C300.

As I am not remotely interested in 4K the C300 is just fine for my purposes, I am sure the RED gives some lovely pictures I do hope the cameraman on this shoot gets in touch to tell us more about his experiences with the RED EPIC.

I only noticed this when I got back to base, the media truck, there is space for 2-3 video cameramen/women with tripods and 4 snappers along the bottom.

My sons friend Julie kindly shot me on her iPhone, I have a Storm jacket covering my 70-200 lens and the camera body, the best $38 I ever spent.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

The end result

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So here we are Program number one out, took about a half a day to film and edit. The camera was the Canon C300 with a 50mm Leica f1.4 lens set to f4 recorded onto CF card at 50 Mbps 4:2:2. Edited on Final Cut Pro 10 and Motion 5 using Skype call recorder for the inserted interview. All produced at zero budget but Scott hopes to attract sponsorship as the competition goes on.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Getting ready for Euro 2012 “Four layers later the final conclusion”

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Finally after a lot of investigation it looks like we are ready for our first Euro 2012 web insert tomorrow. The Canon C300 will shoot the chroma key inserts and Final Cut Pro 10 will be used to edit various footage from multiple sources. Due to using Matrox MX02 FW 2.5 I have had to forgo external monitoring.

The graphic above is 4 layers, the Euro 2012 logo, the blue background, iPad coaching App insert and Scott the presenter via chroma key all done with FCPX.

I had to re-install the software for my Matrox MX02 back to version 2.5, this gave me the final version of Matrox Vetura Capture which by-passes the need to use log and capture in FCP-7, the iPad works a treat with the special dock cable to HDMI out which plugs straight into the HDMI on the Matrox MX02. You can choose how many audio tracks you need from 2 to 16.

This is a very simple but effective interface if you need to get live footage into FCPX, you must set up your preferences to 720p in order to take iPad footage live into your computer which is fine as I am editing in 720 50p HQ, all you do is import the footage into FCPX and your sorted.  Why HQ, Alan Roberts an ex BBC research engineer wrote a white paper on the Canon C300 footage and if you treat your footage as 10bit you get a better result from your 4:2:2 8bit signal.

The Chroma key is exceptional, very fast and very clean in FXPX which is why I have plumbed for it with the 10 minute Euro 2012 inserts though speaking to a few editors yesterday for long hall projects they advise Premiere Pro CS6, one editor Rick Young told me he has over 50 hours of footage to ingest into FCPX as he thinks FCPX is more than capable of long hall work.

We are living in confusing times, there seems to be a general consensus that no one edit program serves all needs, many broadcast work including the official Euro 2012 edited in Warsaw will be cut on FCP-7, I personally would have stuck by FCP-7 if chroma key had not been an issue but having struggled in many occasions with 4:2:2 chroma key footage in Final Cut 6-7, it was a joy to swap over to FCPX if somewhat late in the day.

Apple need to address the live ingest with FCPX as many post houses will not consider an NLE without the ability to ingest live footage from various sources, especially tape.


For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Volumetrix Upgraded to 2.1 for Final Cut Pro X

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Volumetrix Upgraded to 2.1 for Final Cut Pro X

The previous version supported Final Cut Pro X, but everybody asked us if we could build all the cool presets from FCP7 into effects. So that’s exactly what we have done: all 64 of them, transitions too.

Volumetrix still supports Final Cut Pro 7, Motion 4&5, Final Cut Express 4 and Adobe After Effects with one licence working for all hosts. The best news is that the 2.1 upgrade is free to all existing licence holders.

If you already use Volumetrix, then you’ll know that the rays, glows, glints and object transparency are all controlled by one easy to use parameter. No hassle having to mask the object underneath the effect, we do all the hard work for you. The wipe, rays or glow travel are set by one rotary parameter giving a full 360 degree choice of effect direction.

If you haven’t tried it before, you can instantly get great volumetric lighting effects with one click by adding a preset to text, images and video or use the effect as a starting point for your own custom reveal, conceal or highlight. We also decided to publish all the plugin parameters in each effect, so every timing, display option and volumetric light type can be adjusted without having to load up another preset.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

FCPX and no “Live ingest”

Categories: Miscellaneous 7 Comments

Producing a football program this week has set the heather alight in my edit suite, let me explain. Having swapped over earlier on this year to the Matrox MX02 I was hoping for an ingest box that covered many options.

Driver installs the Matrox MXO2 with MAX v2.4 (build 14) software for Mac OS X Lion only (10.7.2). This software supports Apple Final Cut Pro 7.0.3, Adobe Premiere Pro 5.5.2, Apple Compressor 3.5.3 and 4.0, and Adobe Media Encoder 5.5.1.

So thats two NLEs to choose from out of the one box…great !

Then came driver The Matrox MXO2 MAX v3.0.1 (build 13) release for use with Apple FCP X 10.0.4 and Compressor is now available on the MXO2 User Forum. This release provides professional monitoring capabilities while editing with Apple Final Cut Pro X and encoding video in Apple Compressor using the Matrox MAX H.264 codec.

Not so cool…this driver is only useful if you are only using FCPX remembering you cannot ingest live footage into FCPX !

Then came driver installs the Matrox MXO2 with MAX v2.5 (build 34) software for Mac OS X Lion only (10.7.3). This software supports Apple Final Cut Pro 7.0.3, Adobe Premiere Pro 5.5.2, Apple Compressor 3.5.3 and 4.0.2, and Adobe Media Encoder 5.5.1.

So that gave me a good option to swap between FCP-7 and Premiere Pro 5.5

Recently we have driver installs the Matrox MXO2 MAX v3.1 (build 86) software for Mac OS X Lion only (10.7.4). This software supports Adobe CS6 only (with Premiere Pro 6.0.1 and Media Encoder 6.0.1)

So what has happened to a box that once supported two NLEs and now only supports one…sadly for independent editors like myself I have to compromise video monitoring to allow me live ingest of iPad footage. There are Euro 2012 Apps to be reviewed in this series of programs and I have spent a day figuring out how to achieve this and have had to compromise FCPX in order to do so.

The MX02 can only have 1 chip that deals with the new software why can’t we have 4 chips inside to cope with different set-ups and 4 switches on the outside to allow you to switch between FCPX, FCP-7, Premiere CS6 and AVID.

Matrox Vetura was an indépendant ingest program that Matrox produced up until version 2.4 then for some strange reason it was dropped, this would have been perfect for FCPX yet Matrox in their own wisdom decide to drop it last April.

If like me you need to ingest live footage into your NLE and you are using FCPX, own an Matrox MX02…you can’t !

Workaround…You need to install version 2.5, then use FCP-7 via log and capture, ingest your “live footage”, export out as a self contained quick time then re import the QT file into FCPX…its a joke !

The real culprit here is Apple themselves by re-inventing the wheel and coming out with a square one…FCP-7 was a great program that needed a few updates like memory leakage problems and it would have been the king on NLEs, instead some joker in Apple decided to take all the functionality out of FCP, make it into a laughing stock…take 4 updates to add in the functionality they ripped out in the first place and still can’t ingest live video footage !!!


For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

PART TWO…”Making the Jump”

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My son wants to produce a few video inserts during the up and coming Euro 2012 for his blog so today was the build a virtual studio in his room. Basically we have a green screen with five LED lights, four pointing at the green screen and one in front of Scott using his white door for added reflection.

I had read that FCP-10 was good at green screen but WOW…I had a perfect key without doing anything, obviously the Canon C300 with its 50Mbps, 4:2:2 and 50mm f1.4 Carl Zeiss lens helps but I was blown away with how easy it was to achieve such a fantastic key in a matter of minutes.

But I also discovered that in order to run in his iPad information I had to revert back to FCP-7 using log and capture, running the live iPad footage straight into the MacPro via the HDMI on the Matrox MX02.

Dilema time…As I have FCP-7, FCP-10 and Premiere Pro CS6 what do I choose…so for the rest of 2012 I am sticking with FCP-7 and FCP-10. I used this combination successfully with my C300 DVD, using FCP-10 for effects then re-importing back to FCP-7.

I think Adobe have shown me over the last 2 weeks that they are not as advanced in many ways as FCP-10 nor can you get the same level of 3rd party plug-ins as you can for FCPX, I left the PC many years ago and by all accounts has only grown up with Windows 7.

I may come back to Premiere Pro CS6 in the future but for now I will stick with FCP-7, FCPX and Motion 5.


For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

ADOBE launch links but don’t work with Safari !

Categories: Miscellaneous 4 Comments


This is very poor indeed but after waiting 7 days to add the missing content from Premiere Pro 6 and Encore the two ZIP files don’t work using Apples legacy browser Safari !

After all my blogging it appears that the Encore content of 1.7GB only downloads 205 MB of data this is a joke !!!

You are welcome to check for yourself here

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