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Video editing stations

Each of the lab's 14 editing stations features:
  • a Mac Pro
  • 2.66 GHz Dual-Core Intel Xeon processor
  • 1GB RAM
  • 250GB hard drive
  • 8x double-layer SuperDrive (DVD+R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
  • a 23" Apple Cinema HD Display
  • a DV/Mini-DV tape deck
  • a TV monitor
  • studio headphones

External hard drives are available for use within the lab to store video projects. Each drive is partitioned for use by two students. Always ask a staff member to connect/disconnect your drive!

Workstation tips

  • If you don't see picture on the TV monitor, make sure all the connections are solid and that the Sony DSR-11 capture deck is on. Then check your settings in Final Cut Pro (See our Final Cut Pro Help Guide).
  • If you don't get sound, plug your headphones into the front of the computer tower itself.
  • In Final Cut Pro, make sure that under the View menu, the audio playback is set to Built In.
  • If a second person wants to listen, ask the lab attendant for a headphone jack splitter instead of using the computer speaker.
  • Control sound with the volume control located in the upper right of the computer screen.
  • Some stations have a Mighty Mouse; to right-click, tap the right side of the mouse with your middle finger (or hold down the Control key on the keyboard while left-clicking).
  • Do not touch the monitors with your fingers--it doesn't make any sense!
  • Keep your stations clear and clean.

Workstation tips

Tips for using Macs

  • To quit a program you must go to the File menu and down to Quit to close a program fully. Otherwise, you will only close individual windows in the program.
  • If you cannot find a file, click the magnifying glass icon in the upper right hand corner and type in the name of the file, or at least part of the name. If it exists anywhere in the computer, Spotlight will find it.
  • If the computer freezes, you can restart it by holding down the power button on the front for 5 to 10 seconds until it shuts down.
  • All the programs are in the Dock at the bottom of the screen.
  • If there is a small triangle below an application icon, this means that the application is still open.
  • If you collapse a window using the middle (yellow) button at the top left of every window, it will shrink down into the Dock on the right side. If you want to re-open this window, simply click the thumbnail in the Dock.

The dubbing station

Digital Editing Lab users have access to a dubbing station that can transfer projects between DV, DVD, and VHS formats. The station includes:

• 2 VCRs
• a DV deck
• a DVD-RW burner
• a TV monitor

Students with lab access may check out digital video cameras from the lab for a maximum of four days per quarter, including weekends. Tripods and microphones are also available. A $50 BARC charge will be levied if equipment is not returned by 2 pm of the return date.

Camera guide

• Help, my image is really dark!
• Remove the lens cap from your camera.
• Add more light to your scene.
• Help, my image is too bright!
• Be careful to avoid direct sunlight.
• Try and have your background and foreground evenly lit.
Shadow is best, or an overcast day works wonders for making everything look even and natural.
• For optimal sound, try and find a camera with an audio-in and use an external microphone. Otherwise, the sound will have a lot of hissing, noise and feedback.
• Make sure the lens is clean. Clean it with a glass or lens cleaner and do not use any sort of coarse material, including your fingers. Always put the lens cap on when not filming.
• Charge batteries over night to make sure they are fully charged before shooting. If you are still not getting enough battery life, try to avoid using the flip out LCD screen--it drains a lot of power.


Our lab features the latest pro-level creative software, including Final Cut Pro Studio 2, Photoshop, and After Effects.

Final Cut Pro. The hub of Final Cut Studio, Final Cut Pro is a nonlinear video editing program used by professional editors worldwide. It supports a wide variety of video formats and features more than 150 effects and filters. Our tutorial:

• To make corrections, use the Undo button first.
• Save, save, and save. The program can crash and accidents happen often.
• If your timeline has gone missing it is going to be in one of two places. Either you accidentally collapsed it, in which case it can be found in the dock at the bottom of the screen. If it was accidentally closed, you simply have to double click the "sequence" from your bin where all your clips are kept.
• If any other window is missing, try going to the Window menu at the top of the screen and see if it is listed there.
• When you are logging and capturing and there is no picture, make sure that you turn "preview" on. To do this click the Clip Settings tab and check the preview icon and also make sure the audio icon is checked as well.
• If a warning comes up that says the capture device cannot be found, make sure the DSR-11 is on and that the cable is connected properly. Then click, "Check Again."
• If Final Cuts tells you that the bit rate of your audio files is different from your project, this means that your camera captured audio with a slightly different compression rate. To change your project to the different bit rate, look under project settings and change the audio to the matching number. If you do this, please set it back to how it was before you got on the computer. If only some of your footage is having this issue, then you will have to render is so that it works with the other footage. To do this, click on the clip and the press Apple-R on the keyboard.
• If there are dropped frames while capturing, you may have a glitch on your tape. Try capturing it again. If this does not work, you can try using a different capture deck.
• For a continual time code, always stripe your tape. To stripe your tape, you should put it in the camera and record over the whole new tape from beginning to end. This will print a consistent time code for the whole tape. Then rewind it to the beginning and its ready to start shooting. Always do this! It will save much time and effort and pain and anguish and possibly some violence.
• PAL is a standard of video used in Europe and other parts of the world. The predominate standard in America is NTSC. While final cut supports PAL, and you can change it to do so you have footage shot on a foreign camera, then speak to a lab attendant to get specific advice for your situation. Either way, if you change any setting to PAL on one of our computers, make sure to change it back to NTSC before you leave.
• If a transition between clips doesn't seem to work, the issue is most likely there is not enough header or footer on the clips you are working with. Make sure there is at least a few seconds at the beginning and end of the clips you are working with past your in and out points so the program has some footage to work with for the transition.
• If your video and audio get out of sync, note the little red time code numbers that pop up on the clips on the timeline. These show how many seconds and frames the clips are out of sync from each other. Realign them (by right-clicking the red numbers) and turn linking back on.
• If your windows get all jumbled or you can't find one, go to the Window menu and set it to Standard under "arrange." This will put everything back in place.
• If a file goes offline, your scratch discs may not have been set. To fix this, find your clips, even if they are on another computer. Manually drag them into your media folder on your hard drive and then right click the offline clips and select Reconnect Media. In the window that pops up, find your newly-transferred clips and select them.
• If a video clip seems to "shimmer" especially if you are using a still image, add the "de-interlace" filter.

| Apple tutorial | Product website

DVD Studio Pro. This DVD-authoring software easily imports from Final Cut Pro or virtually any other video format. Design possibilities range from the very simple to the very complex, with advanced options such as subtitling, copy protection, and double-layer DVD burning. Apple tutorial

LiveType. The variety of effects in this full-featured animated titling application allows infinite possiblities. Just import your finished LiveType text file into your Final Cut project. Apple tutorial | Product website

Motion. Motion is powerful 2D and 3D animation software. It is built with an intuitive interface and allows you to see the results in real time as you work and even adjust animation settings on the fly during playback. Apple tutorial | Product website

Photoshop. Supporting dozens of formats and featuring hundreds of effects and possibilities, Photoshop is the industry leading graphics editor. It can be used to create everything from backgrounds and textures for videos to attractive buttons and menus for DVDs. Adobe tutorial | Tutorials on photoshopsupport.com | Product website

After Effects. Tightly integrated with Photoshop, After Effects delivers seamless animation of your PSD files. Create anything from simple 2D animations to complex animated masterpieces. Adobe tutorial | Product website



DEL contacts

Raymond AuthierDigital Editing Lab & Reserved Media Viewing Room Supervisor1126 Kerr Hall
workPhone: 805-893-7420