Suggested work flow by SJJ1805 for Video Creation
Following recent discussions on the forum I have come to the conclusion that it would be more efficient for me to create my suggested work flow as a separate thread to those already in existence in an attempt to avoid confusion caused by the suggested methods made by other users.
The way that I view the entire process of getting from source to completion is to split the process up into 3 distinctive steps.
Step 1. Capture.
Step 2. Edit.
Step 3. Share.
Failing to follow this or any other suggested work flow will not mean that a bolt of lightening will come shooting out of the sky and fry you and your computer. Experiment and find a work flow that works for you. This work flow works for me and follows a logical set of steps and provides me with a good result. It does not imply that you cannot do things in a different manner.
Step 1. Get it onto your hard drive.
It is a generally accepted fact that if you can capture (or in the case of most camcorder recordings - transfer) your video footage in a non lossy format such as DV (avi) then you should do so. Not everyone can enjoy that luxury because with such a wide range of video recording equipment and a wide variety of video sources - TV cards - Digital cameras - camcorders - internet - mobile phones - CCTV systems - Sky+ boxes - DVD discs and so on. Furthermore different hardware systems have different connection capabilities - USB, Firewire, SCART, RCA and so on, that what may apply to some users cannot physically be done by others.
As described above not all users can do this the same way.
Establish what is best for YOUR setup and the best possible settings for YOUR equipment and source materials.
It is a widely accepted fact that DV (avi) is an easier format to edit than MPEG2 but that does not mean it is impossible to edit MPEG2 and as mentioned above, for some users it is unavoidable.
Step 2. Edit.
Every time you render (create) a video file you risk losing some quality and you risk other issues such as out of synch audio/video. You therefore should aim to render a file the least number of times possible.
What this means is that you place your source materials from step 1 onto the timeline or overlay tracks. make your cuts, add your transitions, titles and extra backgrounds sounds - generally you tidy it all up, cut out the rubbish and put in all your Steven Spielberg Special Effects.
At this time, your original source materials remain untouched on your hard drive. You have simply created a very large text file which is a record of your intended
cuts, transitions titles and so on. You save this large text file as a VideoStudio Project File - or in the case of MediaStudio - a MediaStudio project file.
Now what you do is to apply all those cuts, transitions, titles and so on and create a new video file. There are two ways to do this.
which is my preferred method, is to create a brand new video file on your hard drive with all of those edits processed. It is no longer a project file it is now a standalone and playable video.
When you do this - you don't want to render it again - we are aiming to render ONCE to avoid loss of quality and any other side issues such as audio/video synchronization. Our target device will be a DVD disc playable in a standalone DVD player and so we need to render to MPEG2.
If however you are producing a video to place on the internet you would no doubt create one of the following
DivX / Xvid / MPEG4 / WMV / Quicktime or some other format associated with videos you find on the internet.
In another scenario you may wish to transfer the edited material back to your camcorder, perhaps to preserve it on tape. Here you would render to a DV (avi) file.
The reason why this is my preferred method to Method 2 below is that you can now play this video on your computer before moving on to step 3 - authoring. You now have the opportunity to watch the video on your computer with those edits having been implemented. If you decide further editing is required you simply go back to your project file and edit it further.
Using this 'Method 1' you must work out in advance the appropriate bit rate and quality settings so that the completed project will fit onto your DVD - otherwise you will end up rendering the video a second time to reduce it to fit.
(Please view What Bit Rate settings should I use?
- place the project file into the authoring module.
(Applies to VideoStudio only - MediaStudio project files cannot be placed into MovieFactory or DVD Workshop)
Here you have not rendered your video file but instead you render the file as a part of the authoring stage. Technically there is no reason why you cannot do this. Practically though you must consider what effect it will have on the entire project if you then create your completed DVD and then realise you needed to do further editing. Will this affect the placement of your DVD chapters and so on. You might end up having to redo the authoring stage again.
Either way your video will get rendered to the required format - normally MPEG2 as most users will be creating a DVD disc playable in a standalone DVD player. This will take the same amount of time no matter which method you choose. In other words if you create the video file first using method 1, your video has already been rendered and so will not be rendered again and so the authoring stage will appear to take dramatically less time than method 2 where the file must now be rendered.
Here is this same message explained again another way as an answer to another post on the forum
Like many things in life you can do things in a number of different ways and you will soon adopt a work flow that you find comfortable to work with.
To prevent any possible loss in quality I have found from my experience and also by reading the views of several other video editors that the aim is to render the least number of times preferably once.
So here is what can be done to achieve this.
Firstly you have lets say a hours worth of video in your camcorder and you transfer it to your hard drive in DV (avi) format using an IEEE1394 (firewire) cable. You have an exact copy on your hard drive of what is on your camcorder. No loss of quality.
Lets call this Movie A.
Now you decide that you wish to create two movies from that same Movie A.
One is a main movie where you have simply cut out the unwanted bits.
This movie may last some 45 minutes. We will call this Movie B.
Once you have completed your editing and are ready to create a DVD, you then render Movie B to MPEG2 format and then enter the authoring stage. You have only rendered Movie B once.
The second movie is going to be a short preview movie of Movie B
Like the trailers of the Hollywood films.
We are going to call this Movie C.
To create Movie C you must again return to Movie A as your source.
This way when you create Movie C it will have only been rendered Once.
Hope that makes sense so far.
Just before you rendered Movie B you save a VideoStudio Project file - perhaps you called it Project B.
Just before you rendered Movie C you save another VideoStudio project file - perhaps you called it Project C.
Providing you leave the original source material untouched (Movie A)
you can re-open your VideoStudio Project file and make further adjustments or edits.
So you opened up project B and made a few more cuts, this time you create another Movie B to replace the one you made earlier.
In other words it has still only been rendered once.
Let us say that you¡¦ve edited a video and decide to render it to MPEG2 ready for authoring and it took one and a half hours. You watch that video and decide to make some changes. OK you lost one and a half hours because now your going to render it again.
Doing it the other way, you create a full-blown DVD from a vsp.
The program still took one and a half hours to convert the edited material into the necessary MPEG2 file, but it also then spent more time again firstly creating the DVD Menus ¡V the length of time depends upon how many pages are involved and how many thumbnails are on each page, and then there is the conversion step from MPEG2 to VOB.
So by using the vsp file in the authoring module you would lose even more time.
All that you need to remember when editing your video is to aim to render the least number of times, preferably once. Sometimes this is not possible.
An example of some of our forum members being forced into rendering a second time is here:
Kodak MOV files
Here you will find our members are making the recommendation to convert from the MOV format to another first. A similar situation exists when dealing with the highly compressed formats DivX Xvid and MPEG4.
Step 3. Authoring.
This is the stage where you now create your DVD menus and navigation structure, chapters, Menu background sounds and images and so on.
From this you burn your completed project onto your DVD disc ready to play in your standalone DVD player.
I hope this clarifies the procedure and from this you can see that it is NOT necessary to create an avi file from Step 2 but instead either create a DVD compliant MPEG2 file or place the project into the authoring module at step 3.
Further suggested reading:
From camcorder to DVD with VideoStudio
Click this thumbnail to see a flowchart describing this suggested work flow: