MAGIX: Couple more editing queries

Discussion in 'Amateur Video Production' started by Terry Pinnell, Dec 29, 2007.

  1. Gradually making progress with MEP-11 (UK), although constantly
    finding relatively trivial things I don't know how to do. Like these
    two:

    1) How do I apply a transition to a selection of clips please? I have
    a couple of hundred clips, arranged in topics. The clip at the start
    of each topic gets a Thru Black transition. Then all the other 10-30
    clips in that topic get a Cross Fade. But it seems I have to apply
    that cross fade to either the whole track, or tediously to each
    individual clip.

    One idea I had was to temporarily drag each selection to another
    track, and apply the transition collectively there. But frustratingly
    the 'Apply to all objects...' option disappears when I do that.

    2) When I'm monitoring a movie in full screen mode and I find a
    section I want to edit, I press Esc to get back to Timeline view, but
    that does not show the *current* position I've reached. How do I get
    that?
     
    Terry Pinnell, Dec 29, 2007
    #1
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  2. Terry Pinnell

    Ken Maltby Guest

    Maybe I'm missing something, but why not just switch
    to the "Storyboard" mode for setting these transitions?
    Then just click on the transition between the first two clips
    and select crossfade then "Apply to all". Then click on any
    transition you want to be different and change that one, the
    rest should remain as crossfades. This kind of thing is what
    the storyboard mode is best for. You can switch back and
    forth between the three modes using the icons at the far left.


    Why are you using "Esc"? Just pause were you want the
    scrub line to be and click on the "Fullscreen display" icon at
    the far right on the bottom. (The icon toggles between the
    mode you are in and fullscreen, so if you were in timeline
    mode you would go back to that.) [the default keyboard
    shortcut for that icon/function is "Alt-Enter"] OR just
    double-click on the display to switch back and forth.

    I've got all kinds of things in the alphabetic listing,
    under that tab.


    Luck;
    Ken
     
    Ken Maltby, Dec 29, 2007
    #2
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  3. Thanks Ken. That's OK for those transitions you've planned at the
    outset, but not for decisions later. In this particular case, many
    hours into the project, I have 10 'topics' with Thru Black separating
    them, but no other transitions, like this:
    TB----TB---------------TB---TB------------TB etc

    Now I want to change most (maybe not even all) of those cuts into
    crossfades, as I think I'll prefer that gentler effect, i.e:
    TB-CF-CF-CF-CF-TB- etc

    I'm surprised MEP doesn't offer the facility to apply operations to
    *selected* objects.

    I've just seen a suggestion in the MEP forum:

    "Drag all the objects that you *don't* want affected to a lower track
    and apply the transition that you *do* want to all that are left on
    track one. Move these (perhaps safely grouped) down, and bring another
    group up to apply the next transition to 'all'."

    I'll try that shortly.
    I just find it easier than clicking the full screen icon, and it has
    identical effect. In fact it also simultaneously Stops play, so is
    like hitting Space then clicking the full screen icon. But see below
    about my confusion re 'Stop' and 'Pause'.
    Ah, what I hadn't realised was that 'Stop' apparently means something
    different to 'Pause'. I had assumed that the entry in the Keyboard
    Shortcuts list "Start/Stop Space bar" meant I could use Space (from
    full screen or timeline view) to stop at precisely that frame. I now
    realise that's not so: it takes MEP back to the *start marker*.

    If there really is no key shortcut for Pause (?) then I'll get into
    the habit of using the mouse to click the Pause icon (then hit Esc to
    go back to timeline).
    Had a similar response from another user in the MEP forum. So looks
    unique to me. I suppose I'll have to either live with it or try
    re-installing.
    I spent most of Sat/Sun grappling with another issue. I rendered to
    MPEG from the original sources (photos with individual pan/zoom added,
    plus transitions and title). I then re-imported the MPEG (for fine
    tuning and the addition of music). But right at the end of the new
    movie, the timeline then included about 20 frames from the very start!

    I wondered if it was just an 'artifact', but unfortunately it's real
    enough. In fact it's apparently a bug. From another user in the MEP
    forum:
    "Yes this is a never to be fixed bug when dealing with Mpeg2 and
    VOBs............You need to start frameserving or your wasting your
    time with Magix."

    I trimmed the offending section, with some difficulty because the
    displaced frames only show in the preview monitor when you're stepping
    *backwards*! So no big deal for the project in practice. But I'd
    received similar advice (from the same user) to get into this black
    art of frameserving on several previous occasions, because of MEP's
    apparent inability to handle MPEG or VOB imports larger than 1GB. So I
    finally bit the bullet and spent yesterday afternoon getting the tools
    and learning the basics of how to frameserve, starting at
    http://www.aaproductions.net/mep/problems/frameserving/frameserving.htm#frameserving

    I first used a combination of DGIndex and VFAPI, as that sounded more
    flexible than VirtualDub-MPEG2. But I later tried VD too and got
    similar results with both methods, as follows.

    When I load the frameserved MPEG (now an AVI called, in this instance,
    USA97-3b_d2v_vfapi.avi) into MEP-11, I got a message that, unlike the
    original 16:9 export and my MEP movie settings, it had now somehow
    become 4:3. I went ahead with the import anyway, to confirm the
    original problem was no longer in evidence, but obviously I cannot use
    the MPEG in that distorted form. Looks like I'll have to resize it in
    MEP.

    I can import the MPEG without distortion into Womble or MoTV, so it's
    disappointing that MEP doesn't apparently recognise it as for the DVD
    MPEG that it is.
     
    Terry Pinnell, Dec 31, 2007
    #3
  4. Terry Pinnell

    Ken Maltby Guest

    If you go to the Storyboard mode and change them all
    to the crossfade you will have:

    TB-CF-CF-CF-CF-CF-CF-CF-CF-CF-CF-CF-ect-TB

    Then find the A/B boxes for the CFs you want to change
    back to TBs and make the changes. You will then have
    the "TB-CF-CF-CF-CF-TB- etc" you want.

    I just loaded a test project that I made with five
    small clips, to examine your problem. Using the
    Storyboard mode it was easy to first make them
    all crossfades then change any of them to most
    any transition I wanted. I changed them back
    and forth and used "Apply to all" to make them
    all the same then changed different A/B boxes,
    and then the same as I did at first and had no
    problems. With the number of clips you
    mentioned, you will need to use the slider at the
    bottom, or you might want to set "Jump Points"
    and/or "Chapter Points" to navigate to the
    transitions you wish to change to something
    different from the one you set with the "Apply
    to all".


    That's got to be way more work than the storyboard
    process I described.

    Just double-click anywhere on the monitor display, after
    clicking on the pause button.

    If you look through that site a little you should see that
    most of the problems that he is addressing were fixed
    by the 10+ version. You said you have the 11(UK)
    version right? Have you applied the latest update?
    That said, frameserving is a very useful tool to have on
    hand. AviSynth 2.5 has some of the most useful filters.
    http://avisynth.org/mediawiki/Main_Page

    If you right-click on the imported video ( on track one, I assume)
    and select "Object properties" you can change the Aspect ratio, if
    you change it to match the Movie/project (16:9 I assume) you should
    have what you want.
     
    Ken Maltby, Jan 1, 2008
    #4
  5. Yes, but each change has to be made individually, not as a selected
    set. And of course it's obviously best to do this as I said at the
    very start. In Womble or MoTV I simply select the clips I want to
    change in some way, whether it's 1, 10 or 90 of the 100 total, and
    apply the change(s) in one operation. Seems a glaring design flaw in
    MEP?
    But, as mentioned, unless I've missed something, your method (whether
    working in storyboard or timeline) doesn't allow me to apply
    transitions etc to a *selection* of objects. The above method does,
    although of course it's still a poor second best to applying the
    changes in one simple operation, as other editors do. You described
    applying to *all*, or applying to specific clips one at a time. I'm
    talking about applying to a *selection*.
    I've since been told of a key shortcut for Pause: Down Arrow. That
    does exactly what I need. Can't see it documented anywhere? It doesn't
    appear in my 4-page print out of Keyboard Shortcuts, nor entering
    'Pause' in Help|Find.
    Yes, MEP-11 (UK). And version 6.0.5.2 is apparently the latest, with
    no patches required. So some at least of those problems still remain.
    I'll be emailing MAGIX Support about the issue sometime.

    It's very easy to reproduce. Import 2 still images, A and B.
    Immediately save the movie as MPEG (Alt+c). My settings are:
    MPEG-2
    Video: 720x576; 25.00 Frames/s; 16:9; Quality 10
    Audio: 48000 Hz

    The resultant MPEG plays fine.

    Re-import into MEP as a new movie. Here, the timeline now shows a
    short scene from Slide A at the *end* of the movie. If left, that
    renders with the incorrect clip (about 8 frames) still present.
    AVISynth and 'scripts' are still on my 'Must learn' list!
    Excellent, thanks, that's a simple enough fix!

    BTW, I'm always a bit unsure about this message that crops up when I
    import something that MEP regards as having a different AR to my
    standard 16:9 settings:
    "You have adjusted the aspect ratio for the object. If you wish to
    adapt the film and video monitor settings to the object, then click on
    'Adjust'."
    I always click 'Do not adjust' (as I did in this case after changing
    the 4:3 to 16:9), but wonder what circumstances would need me to click
    'Adjust'? Is it just a matter of how the monitor *looks*?

    Am I right that MEP is simply not cleverly recognising the MPEG as a
    DVD-ready MPEG (as Womble and MoTV do), and therefore wrongly
    interpreting it as 4:3? Hence requiring this (trivial) manual
    correction? Or is there more to it than that?

    Finally, thanks a bunch for all your generous and much-valued help in
    2007. Although there's an extra day in 2008, hopefully I'll not be so
    needy overall!

    Happy New Year to you and all here.
     
    Terry Pinnell, Jan 1, 2008
    #5
  6. Terry Pinnell

    Ken Maltby Guest

    Hmmm.... So you would select a range of the clips within
    each of these ten topics and apply your crossfade? You
    would set markers for the start and end to set each of the
    ten ranges, or can you maybe just highlight the range with
    your mouse? Would you do that ten times and then would
    you be able to group all ten of the selected ranges into one
    object before you applied the transition? How do you keep
    the TB transitions between the topics? Do you apply them
    separately, after changing the others or would they remain in
    effect even though you have changed the transition setting for
    both of the clips the TB transition would have worked with?

    Personally I would prefer to click on the first transition and
    click a second time to select crossfade then click a third time
    for the "Apply to all". Then click two times on each of the nine
    topic transitions; once to select the transition A/B box and then
    again to select and apply the TB transition.
    You still have to define a *selection* somehow. It takes one
    click to select a transition A/B box.
    Right, the arrow keys, I forgot all about them. The up arrow
    will play and the right and left arrows move one frame.
    I'll check that out, (I wonder if VideoReDo would fix
    that? It could, if it is really a GOP issue.) [BUT, as a
    general rule I would make my intermediate exports as
    uncompressed AVI]

    It effects more than the monitor display ratio. (MEP considers
    MPEG2 AR as referring to Display Aspect Ratio (DAR) but
    considers most other formats, including MPEG1 as referring to
    Pixel Aspect Ratio (PAR), this actually makes it easier, if you
    aren't working at that level [and if you do, you can understand
    and work with the implications])
    MEP is just making fewer assumptions about the video,
    or at least about how you want to handle the video, in this
    case they are being a little foolish about it though.
     
    Ken Maltby, Jan 1, 2008
    #6
  7. Terry Pinnell

    Ken Maltby Guest


    Just did a quick try, but my MPEG2 of two stills is
    fine as a new movie in MEP - no extra frames at the
    end. I'll try a few more times, maybe I just got lucky
    with this try. It could be that I am using Version 12,
    as well. Don't see how it could be a PAL/NTSC
    thing, but who knows.

    Luck;
    Ken
     
    Ken Maltby, Jan 1, 2008
    #7
  8. Thanks for trying anyway. Just in case the different result is down to
    the MPEGs, here's the one I made, TEST-2photos-1.mpg (9 MB):
    http://www.speedyshare.com/361990584.html

    The result I see here when I import that is MEP-MPEG-Quirk1.jpg (27KB)
    http://www.speedyshare.com/628750766.html

    I've emailed a 'support ticket' to MAGIX.
     
    Terry Pinnell, Jan 2, 2008
    #8
  9. No, I'd just select all 100, deselect the 10 at the start of each
    topic (using Ctrl+left-click), and apply the required changes (e.g.
    transition type = crossfade, duration = 0.5 s).
    I'd have to do a methodical test to be sure, but I'm guessing that's
    fewer operations than necessary in MEP. But the benefit of an 'apply
    to selection' approach would really become greater as you get further
    into a project, with many varied transitions, durations, etc *already*
    applied, and a few different ones now required.

    For example, the little project that prompted this was because I was
    making a DVD of our 1997 USA tour and realised I hadn't taken any
    photos during our 1 night stay in Las Vegas. That was in contrast to
    20-100 for all other 9 locations (San Francisco, Yosemite, Bryce,
    Grand Canyon, etc), so I needed something. I therefore downloaded 100
    suitable images using Google Images, mainly hotels, and planned to
    inject them as a 'topic' (between Death Valley and Zion). I planned a
    rapid-fire rate, 3 secs each. So at the start they looked like this:
    33333333333 etc (representing 100 clips, all 3s, with no transition)

    Then I made each 'topic' (place) start with Thru Black
    F3333T333333333 etc, where F = FadeIn and T = Thru Black

    Then I decided the transitions within topics might be better as short
    (0.5s) crossfades, which is where our discussion started. So, one way
    or another, I ended up with
    F3333T3C3C3C3C3C3C3C3C3T3 etc, where C = Crossfade

    But now I found that some clips, maybe 20 of the 100, were too long
    even at 3 s, because the material was a bit repetitive or dull in
    places. Rather than deleting them, I decided to reduce that
    *selection* to 2.5s (and then later maybe to 2s if that still wasn't
    short enough. IOW, I wanted
    F3233T3C3C2C3C3C3C3C2C3T3 etc, where 2 = 2.5s

    But in MEP there is surprisingly no way of selecting the 20 and
    applying the duration to that selection. If there was, the task would
    take maybe 21 or 22 clicks or keystrokes, most of them simple Ctrl
    left clicks. Instead, if I've got it right, I have to switch out of
    Timeline (where I prefer to work) into Storyboard view, then do the
    following for every one of those 20 clips:

    1) Click the time text to bring up 'Display duration for the current
    object'

    2) Carefully click the '03' part of the existing duration to highlight
    it

    3) Type in '02'

    4) The '00' section to the right now automatically changes to '01' for
    some reason (so if I wanted exactly 3s I would have to alter it to
    '00'). But in this case I calculate that 0.5s is 12 or 13 frames and
    type 12.

    5) Either click OK, or press Enter twice to apply the change and close
    the dialog.

    I reckon that's 7 clicks or keystrokes, making the task nearly 7 times
    longer than a 'selection-based' approach.

    (BTW, I found the alternative of using the slider even slower.)
    But see above.
    See my reply to your later post.
     
    Terry Pinnell, Jan 2, 2008
    #9
  10. Terry Pinnell

    Ken Maltby Guest

    I downloaded your "TEST-2photos-1.mpeg" and tried to
    find the extra frames using MEP12, Ulead VideoStudio 10+,
    VideReDo TVSuite, VDubMod 1.5.10.2 build 2540, the
    GSpot VGS display, and MPEGanalizzatore V1.1.6, but I
    don't see any. This suggests to me that the problem is
    occurring when it is being added back into MEP11.

    Most of the above show 498 frames of actual images out
    of a 500 frame total for the file, are these 8 frames in addition
    to the 498? If you cut them out and save the movie/project
    then reload the movie, are they gone or does it recreate the 8
    frames all over again. (That would indicate that it is in the way
    MEP11 is reading the source video.)

    Luck;
    Ken
     
    Ken Maltby, Jan 2, 2008
    #10
  11. Yes, I think that's almost certainly true. All my programs (NLEs,
    players, utilities) process it normally. My aim in posting it was only
    to see what happened when you imported it into MEP. But you're
    confirming it looks OK in your MEP-12, with no displaced frames at the
    end. So it looks increasingly like a bug in MEP-11 (UK) that Magix
    have fixed in v.12. I emailed them last night. (With difficulty; their
    English ticket support system is erratic, often failing on Send, or
    sometimes suddenly switching to the German page).
    I had just assumed my progs were all seeing exactly 500 frames, as
    GSpot reported. It's interesting to learn that you found exceptions,
    so I've now checked thoroughly too:

    VideoRedo Plus 2.5.6.512: With slider at its end, the counter says
    '00:00:19.23', so I take that as 475+23 = 498

    VirtualDubMod 1.5.10.2: Shows 'Frame 500', but that is presumably not
    a real frame (the window is empty, not black). First frame = 0 and
    last visible frame = 499, so I take that as 500. And that's confirmed
    by File | File Information.

    VirtualDub-MPEG2 1.6.19: Hmm, I was about to say 'ditto'. But one
    oddity is that, although File | File Information says 500, the 'final'
    frame is now not empty. It displays the hotel, like the others in that
    clip. So at first glance I might have read that as 501.

    Womble MPEG Video Wizard DVD 4.0.4.104: Reports 500 under 'Clip
    Information' but with slider at end (in either the input monitor or
    the output monitor), the counter reads 00:00:19:24. Starting frame is
    00:00:00:00, so that implies 499

    TDA 1.6: Under 'Chapter cut edit' it reports 499. Although with slider
    in end position (showing 499/499 and 00:00:19:24), the section of the
    'timeline' above a greyed out '00:00:19:24' is white, and the clip to
    its immediate left is shorter than the others and unnumbered, however
    that's meant to be interpreted!

    Movie Maker 2: Clip Properties shows a duration of 00:00:20.00, but
    with slider at end the counter is '00:00:19.97' which presumably means
    MM2 uses a different format, and works out close to 499.

    Anyway, although an interesting side-issue (leaving me puzzled about
    the inconsistencies), none of these showed any displaced frames.
    Not sure!

    In MEP-11, Object Properties reports the clip as exactly 20 s,
    implying 500 frames. The start frame is shown as 00:00:00:00. As I
    drag the slider to the end, slide B (the hotel) is displayed in the
    monitor. At the very end the counter reads 00:00:19:24 (implying the
    500th frame), and the monitor shows the correct picture, slide B, the
    hotel. If I go one frame further, the monitor is now black, and
    counter reads 20:00 If I now press the left arrow key once, the
    counter becomes 19:24 again, but the monitor now displays slide A (the
    Eiffel replica). I can press it a total of 8 times, displaying the
    Eiffel, and on the 9th it returns to displaying the hotel, with
    counter at 19:16. If I now press the *right* arrow key, instead of the
    Eiffel re-appearing, the hotel remains displayed right through to the
    end again.

    The behaviour in between slides A and B seems correct. Stepping back
    leftwards, beyond the wrong frames, the first time I see slide A (the
    Eiffel) the counter shows 00:00:09:24, frame 250, exactly 10s.
    I exported the trimmed file (Smart Rendering was enabled) and GSpot
    reported 492 frames, as expected. After re-importing, the same problem
    remains. But now there seem to be 11 not 8 frames from slide A at the
    end! Starting at around 19s, I step rightwards a frame at a time. The
    last time I see the Eiffel the counter says 19:15, implying 490+1 =
    491 frames (instead of 492). The next step right displays black, at
    19:16. I now step back and can do so 11 times, displaying the Eiffel
    every time. On the 12th, with the counter at 19:04, the hotel returns.

    As they say, go figure!
     
    Terry Pinnell, Jan 3, 2008
    #11
  12. Terry Pinnell

    Ken Maltby Guest

    It still would be interesting to see what happens if
    you just make the cut and then save the movie/project
    not exporting or rendering yet. It should reload with
    the 8 frames gone, it sounds like it might reload and
    find more frames; depending on where/during which
    process, the frame references become corrupted.

    I can't really figure this out, from here, as it seems
    to be a problem with the version you have. Did you
    see this problem in the e-version?
     
    Ken Maltby, Jan 3, 2008
    #12
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