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Making Films & Videos/editing & exporting


Hi Troy,
I saw in your profile that you're able to answer questions about Final Cut Pro. I'm currently editing a project in Avid, but hopefully my question is more general and not specific to that particular program. I just can't seem to find anyone who can help with my issue.
I shot an interview project on Panasonic's HPX250. According to the manual, to achieve a film look, it said to set the camera to 1080i/59.94, DVCPRO HD, and 24p. I began editing in Avid, and set the project as 1080p24, since I knew I shot at 24. When I started putting clips into the timeline, it said they were 29.97fps and when played back, they just didn't look right; it was like there was a stutter in the movements or faint lines around edges of people. So I started a new project, as 1080i/59.94 and brought in my already created sequence to that. It played back a lot better, but the timeline heading said it was still 29.97 fps. And when I tried exporting as a Quicktime file, using different settings, it still had that weird stuttering look to it; like the frame rate was still off. I'm not sure what to do at this point. I want to be able to create a Quicktime movie that looks as good as it did in Avid. Any help you can provide on this would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you

Hello, sorry to hear about your problem.  I do not know anything about AVID, but I will try to help out.  In FCP, you can take a clip, drop it into the timeline and the program will recognize that the settings are wrong and offer to make the proper changes for you.  Will AVID do that or do you have to set it ahead of time?

Also, you either recorded in 59.94i OR 24p.  Your statement above said you did both.  If it looks jittery, I would assume that you did 24p, so you would need a 1080p24 setting or else it will get all messed up.  Since you did that, the issue may be coming from the conversion process that the program has to do to the 24p material to actually view it (24p is not normal - nothing actually shows 24p, so it has to be converted to a usable format like 29.97).  You will probably want to run a quicktime test from this timeline and see what your material looks like.  This may be the process you need for your video.

For future reference, just taking an edited sequence from one type of setting and bringing it into a new timeline with a new setting may not actually fix anything (it doesn't in FCP).  I would try re-editing a portion of your video in a 59.94 and then running of a quicktime file of it and compare it to the quicktime file from the above timeline to see if one looks better.

As far as looking like film, it is a very common misconception that 24 fps will make it look like film.  It doesn't and never has.  It was originally designed for filmmakers who wanted to shoot on video and be able to transfer frame-for-frame pictures to actual filmstock.  The reason it doesn't look like film is that film is then projected back at 24fps but each picture is shown twice or three times essentially making it 48fps or 72fps.  The video itself does not do that -- it only shows the image once.  It will make your footage look very jittery and jumpy (as you described).  So for future shoots, don't go any lower than 30 fps.  Spend time on creative lighting and shadows to make it look more like film.  I am wondering if this is the true culprit of your problems.  

I hope this helps. :)  

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Troy Smith


I am a professional filmmaker (since 1995) and a professional film instructor (since 2000). I am the co-owner of Imminent Entertainment LLC. I have worked on several low-budget feature films as well as hundreds of other projects including TV commercials, concert videos, live sports for TV, sports highlights, broadcast news, faith productions, large multi-media multi-camera productions, weddings, educational, corporate, promotional, short films, documentaries and more. I have written a book called "The New Filmmaker's Adventure" that will be more widely distributed in the near future. My expertise is in writing, shooting and editing. I can answer questions on Final Cut Pro, lighting, sound recording, scriptwriting, storytelling, directing, producing, editing, multi-camera productions, shooting sports, picture to video, using DTE hard drives, using video cameras. I am NOT an expert on how to sell scripts or movies, how to finance them, how to distribute them or how to get an agent. See my WEB PAGES: and


I have been a professional filmmaker since 1995 and a film teacher since 2000. I am publishing a textbook for beginning filmmakers called "the New Filmmaker's Adventure". I have experience in the area of low-budget feature filmmaking, I am the co-owner of the production company called Imminent Entertainment, I have worked on hundreds of videos, TV shows, multi-camera events and low budget, professional productions, corporate and consumer videos, Final Cut Pro, scriptwriting, directing, videography and cinematography, sound, lighting, editing, and some producing.

Independent Feature Project

I wrote "The New Filmmaker's Adventure" book that I use in my classes and will be publishing it abroad soon

Western Michigan University - Magna cum Laude BS in film/video/TV Maine Media Workshops ('02-'07)- Film Editor Master, Directing Actors for the Camera, Independent Filmmaking, Acting for the Camera, Camera in Motion, The Directors Craft

Awards and Honors
Audience Choice Runner-Up award for Best Picture at the Muskegon Film Festival in 2009 for Producer/editor on "Coffee Shop Kings." Excellence in Education Teaching award. Winner of 12 grants.

Past/Present Clients
Kellogg, Covance, Cytec, WWMT, Ralston, many, many more

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