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Open source video editing still has a long way to go

By Robin 'Roblimo' Miller on March 15, 2007 (7:00:00 AM)

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Once or twice a year I look at FOSS video editing tools to see if they're ready for everyday use by advanced amateur and low-end professional video makers, which is where I classify myself in the video production hierarchy. There have been several notable improvements recently that have moved FOSS video editing tools a little closer to practicality, but FOSS desktop video editing still has a long way to go before it can be taken seriously by people who need to turn out high-quality video productions on tight deadlines.

If you read publications devoted to video production -- Creative Cow is my favorite -- you'll soon learn the word "workflow" if you aren't already familiar with it.

When you're in the cost-competitive business of making corporate videos, often derisively called "industrials" by broadcast people, production speed (efficient workflow) means the difference between success and bankruptcy. Come to think of it, workflow is just as important in the broadcast world, where the hackneyed phrase, "film at eleven," means your work must be ready to run when the news show starts no matter what.

You've heard the expression, "good, fast, cheap; pick two out of three." This applies to video editing like mad. Cheap is nice, but "good" and "fast" are essential. Sony Vegas 7 for Windows (slightly over $400) and Final Cut Express HD for Mac OS X (slightly under $300) are the two least-expensive professional-quality video editing programs currently available.

Leaving the proprietary vs. freedom debate aside for a moment, an active video professional using either of these highly-developed commercial programs instead of current open source offerings will earn back their purchase price in a day or two because of their more efficient workflow capabilities.

Workflow for a typical three-minute video feature segment

Here's the process I go through to get from shooting video to finished product:

  1. Capture video from video camera.
  2. Break captured video into separate clips (an automatic procedure).
  3. Choose clips to use in final video; choose sections of some clips instead of using their full length.
  4. Place clips on timeline in rough order.
  5. Select background music and sound effects.
  6. Place live video/audio in final order. At this point video and audio are often treated separately, i.e. speakers' voices may not necessarily be used solely with images of the speaker but may have those images replaced by images of the person, place or thing the speaker is describing.
  7. Sound levels set on timeline, including fades; removal of hisses or other unwanted noises from live sound.
  8. Color correction if/as needed.
  9. Tweak video clip lengths, align with soundtrack, insert transitions.
  10. Add titles and possibly more sound effects.
  11. Last look-over, more adjustments if needed.
  12. Render in chosen output file format.

Most of the work is done directly on the timeline, not by opening each clip in a separate window when you want to make a change. And the audio editor built into the video editor should include, at a minimum, an equalizer and automatic gain control, plus the ability to group all of the clips on an audio track into a single unit and fade that track's volume up and down as needed.

Ideally, video editing software should never crash, and if it does crash it should have built-in file-recovery that really works.

And through all the editing and rendering process, we don't want to lose frames or even pixels. People who do video professionally buy expensive video cameras and microphones -- ones that give clear pictures and sound in a wide variety of conditions -- and expect that clarity to be preserved or even enhanced by their editing software.

All of this can be done with FOSS, but...

FireWire on Linux is now fully usable, and this is the biggest advance in FOSS video editing usability I've seen. Ubuntu 6.10, released in late 2006, was the first Linux distribution I tried that detected a FireWire PCMCIA card without any fiddling. (Since I do a lot of mobile/remote production, I use a laptop for most of my video editing.) Kino and Cinelerra install on Ubuntu with a couple of apt-get commands or a few Synaptic mouse clicks.

Kino captures video (although not high-definition video) competently through a FireWire port, and Cinelerra can do most video editing tasks if you are willing to spend three to ten times as long doing them as you would with Vegas or Final Cut.

And you can use Audacity to produce sophisticated sound tracks if you have time to re-synch them with your video when you're done, and you're willing to re-synch again after even the most minor change in either your video or your audio.

I do not have a high opinion of Cinelerra. If you are accustomed to Sony Vegas, Final Cut, Avid or other high-end video editing packages, you will find Cinelerra painfully clunky. Of course, once you've gotten used to really good video editing software, you won't like most proprietary consumer-level video editing products, either, not even MainActor (for Linux or Windows), which costs more than three times as much as the much more capable Magix Movie Edit Pro (for Windows only).

I have had no luck using Jahshaka, and although I have downloaded GStreamer-based PiTiVi from the Ubuntu archives, so far I have not gotten it to start up successfully, let along do anything useful with it.

Kino has recently developed into a competent clip editor. If all you want to do is trim the ends from a single video clip, it does that well. I have not yet succeeded in adding titles to Kino videos -- crash problems -- and its output formats are limited. Kino is not, and is not intended to be, a viable professional-level video editor. But at least it has become usable, and it shows promise for the future. In another year or two, at its current development rate, it should be roughly equivalent to iMovie or Windows Movie Maker.

It's OK to spend money to make money

Richard M. Stallman has said, more than once, that the one justifiable reason to use proprietary software is that there is no free software equivalent available. I'm afraid that this is the case in the video editing world -- and will be for a long time to come. Video editing is an incredibly complex computer task.

I did my first "video" edits with film and razor blades, so I am often amazed at how easy it has gotten -- with high-level proprietary software -- to turn out professional-quality video work, and I am especially amazed that it now can be done on an inexpensive desktop computer instead of requiring a special, high-powered workstation. Beyond those miracles, asking for my video editing software to be free (in either sense) almost seems like too much.

I don't mind spending money on video software. While much of the video I make is for fun and entertainment, I do enough paid video work that I can afford to buy the software, video cameras, and other gear it takes to make decent-quality video. Since most of my commercial video work is done on tight deadlines, and most of my "fun" video is done in between other -- usually job-related -- tasks, editing speed (workflow) dictates that I must have the most capable editing tools I can afford.

You saw my video "task list" above. I look forward to the day when there is an open source video editor that can do everything on that list quickly and efficiently. That will be the day I can proudly say I do all my video editing work using free software.

But, back in the present tense, I have a commercial shoot scheduled for this weekend, and I don't think we're going to have production-quality free or open source video editing software available by then. Sigh.

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on Open source video editing still has a long way to go

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Pixar

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 02:46 PM
So if the Linux video tools are so bad, how does Pixar produce the Disney movies?

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Re:Pixar

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 05:19 PM
They got some stuff that they have built themselves.

Dreamworks uses the same in house stuff (that uses clusters) to make stuff like Shrek, etc...

There is a distro called "Startcom Linux" that has some multimedia tools, and if you have multiple computers will cluster out of the box. WHAT would be interesting is if the dedicated group of Ubuntu folks that are doing a multimedia Ubuntu distro,
<a href="http://ubuntustudio.org/" title="ubuntustudio.org">http://ubuntustudio.org/</a ubuntustudio.org>
if they also would have it do clustering automatically when first installed?

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Re:Pixar

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 17, 2007 04:28 AM
They hand-edit each cel with Microsoft Paint.

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Re:Pixar

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 17, 2007 05:29 AM
I was going to flame you but here's something more practical. Do you understand what goes into running a production house and the workflow? Then why would you bring up Pixar like it's some kind of testimony? Yes Linux is being used in production house, but that doesn't change the fact that Linux tools have issues. Also remember that Rob is talking about video editing.

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Re:Pixar

Posted by: Jeremy Akers on March 17, 2007 11:24 AM
Rob is not talking about Linux video tools, he's talking about FOSS video tools.

Just because it runs on Linux, does not make it FOSS. Plenty of proprietary apps run on Linux, and even more FOSS apps run on Windows. The underlying OS is irrelevent.

Why is this distinction so hard to understand?

And by the way, you can bet money that the tools Pixar uses are very very expensive or built in house, and are probably not Free/Open source software.

-Jeremy

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too bad

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 01:46 AM
Unfortunately, you're right. It's too bad that there's not even decent open source entry level video editing software available for Linux.

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Another option

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 02:42 AM
KDENLIVE (<a href="http://kdenlive.sourceforge.net/index.php" title="sourceforge.net">http://kdenlive.sourceforge.net/index.php</a sourceforge.net>) seems to be very promising, althought more work is needed.

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Too many efforts, too few successes

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 03:34 AM
I have been griping about Video Editing software on Linux for years, basically since I made the switch from MS. Regardless, Linux-based software is all that I use, so I bite the bullet on this.

Jahshaka - too many tabs/screens, no clear vision, and where am I again? Lots of corporate sponsors but not enough understanding of what a video editor needs to do, IMHO

KDEnlive - not there yet, and it looks to be almost too simple... lets hope, though...

LiVES - not there yet, just recently resurrected i think, but no updates lately on the website

Kino - No clear vision here either, but it captures pretty well. Timeline would be a good start...

Cinelerra - kidding right? people use this, past 1995?

AVIdemux - not sure what it's meant to do but its always grouped as a video editor...

MainActor - best/most-obvious interface of them all, but not Free

MainActor has been the overall-best that I've found so far, but it is closed-source (not Free) nor is it free-of-charge (demo is free-of-charge, adds watermark to final output). Unfortunately, it crashes often for me; the best they've been able to tell me is that it might be my AMD processor (??) but I suspect my low-end motherboard. It has an OK auto-recovery unless that file gets corrupted, in which case the recovery crashes the program again. And, once you add a few effects and maybe a secondary audio track and some audio overlays, good luck getting it to stay open for long! THEN once all that headache is over and you're video is done, it still has an ugly watermark waiting for you to pay for the software. And I tested saving/opening a *.mapf (MainActor Project File) on a Windows and Linux based OS, and they cannot be read by one another. That seems insane. Worst of all, they took down their user forums, where many people would provide feedback and ask questions to make the most of the software.

I would be happy to pay for a quality program; MainActor seems to have a decent development team and they respond to personal emails (still miss the forums). For $200 or something, I'd take it in a minute if it worked for a single HOUR without a crash.

I really wish that some of the above programs would get together and combine their efforts, and be sponsored by Linspire or Cananocal or someone, to compete with a quality, easy, feature-rich application for home desktop use. With internet video only increasing, the free desktop is in danger of being unused if we cannot compete to make a video better than Microsoft's no-cost application. Jahshaka seems to think its the future of Hollywood, but it needs to be the future of my home video first...

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Re:Too many efforts, too few successes

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 06:56 AM
LiVES does releases on regular basis<nobr> <wbr></nobr>:)

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Re:Too many efforts, too few successes

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 07:53 PM
From the webpage today <a href="http://lives.sourceforge.net/" title="sourceforge.net">http://lives.sourceforge.net/</a sourceforge.net>

"I am completely broke and barely able to continue developing LiVES at present. Please make a donation to help keep the LiVES project going !"

It is interesting that the application also focuses on VeeJaying -- how does he keep it from crashing? NLE's always crash in my world...

Nice to see that this application also has had a recent release, and that it provides binaries for many distros.

This and KDEnlive both need a new test this weekend, I think!

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Avidemux

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 10:58 AM
Avidemux is essentially an opensource rewrite of VirtualDub with more features built in. It loads, appends, and chops video files, applies filters and resizes, splits and joins the video and audio tracks, and compresses video and audio. I guess you could say it's a video stream processor.

It's incredibly easy to operate and anyone who has ever used virtualdub should be right at home. I use it to archive TV shows that I record on VCR and then capture via miniDV firewire passthrough. A far easier process than I've ever had in Windows.

On the other hand, real video editing in Linux? Fugget aboudit!

As for Kino, personally, I've never gotten Kino to do anything useful, mostly because it doesn't seem to be designed to DO anything useful.

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Re:Avidemux

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 01:26 PM
Avidemux is essentially an opensource rewrite of VirtualDub


Er, VirtualDub is open-source (GPL'ed I believe). But it is nonportable, written for Windows only.

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Re:Avidemux

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 17, 2007 02:16 AM
Kino is extremely useful, simple and competent at DOing the following things for me: capture DV from my camera, edit the DV (cuts, trimming and reordering), add a few simple effects (a title and transitions between a few scenes), and export to DVD Video and MPEG-4.

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Re:Too many efforts, too few successes

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 11:17 AM
kdenlive. As i just posted to lwn.net...

I've been lamenting the same thing for years... I don't need to do Hollywood effects, I just want a simple timeline to dump images, video, and sound. If it can handle a huge number of formats, that's a bonus. Something along the same lines as audacity in the audio realm (as opposed to the more powerful and more complex ardour).

kino has been solid for years (the 90s?) and so has firewire for me. But for editing, it just doesn't cut it... Cinelerra has always been crashy for me and the interface makes me want to run. Jahshaka looks "interesting", but I just don't get it (though it has done a lot of good work on underlying libraries apparently). LiVES and others are more geared for vjaying. Pitivi has "cutting" on it's TODO list... KDEnlive, looked good, but I haven't checked it out in awhile.

Until today. I grabbed SVN, dumped in some fotos, dropped in an mp3 file, an mpeg4 video, export timeline to<nobr> <wbr></nobr>.vob and guess what? It's working. And it even has a sensible interface. At last!

<a href="http://kdenlive.sourceforge.net/" title="sourceforge.net">http://kdenlive.sourceforge.net/</a sourceforge.net>

-Jeff

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Cinelerra

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 01:26 PM
A bit quick to dismiss Cinelerra I think. The only downsides to Cinelerra are that is requires a fairly powerful box to run on (they explain this clearly on their website) and that it is 'feature rich' which, of course, means that it has a steep learning curve.

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Re:Cinelerra

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 17, 2007 05:47 AM
I think the interface takes a while to get used to. Then once you are used to the interface, you will notice how often it crashes. Then you will become annoyed.

[Note I've edited a couple movies 2-45 minutes in cinelerra, and once you try to do anything other than just splicing cuts, you are prone to crashes....]

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Re:Too many efforts, too few successes

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 19, 2007 08:16 PM
"LiVES - not there yet, just recently resurrected i think, but no updates lately on the website"

And of course, just checking it out now, I see they put an update the day after you made this post. Heh.

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About LiVES !

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 22, 2007 12:40 AM
Why do you say there are no new updates on the site (<a href="http://lives.sourceforge.net/" title="sourceforge.net">http://lives.sourceforge.net/</a sourceforge.net> ) !? There was a release of a new version (0.9.8.3) just last week !

The project is in active development (although rather slow at the moment due to a lack of funding/donations - well, you know what the answer to that is<nobr> <wbr></nobr>;-) )

- Salsaman.

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Perhaps...

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 03:57 AM
Someone should make a "Firefox of video editing"- a simple editor for which plugins can be made easily (if this is technically possible at all). Of course an automatic upload to youtube from timeline would be a nice feature that could attract sponsorship. I just don't see how else would it be profitable for someone to support a video editor, those successful video editors make money from licenses not support fees.

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Re:Perhaps...

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 22, 2007 12:55 AM
LiVES is intended to be just such a tool. It uses an extensive system of plugins: there are plugins for encoding, playback, and effects (both realtime and non-realtime; generators, filters, transitions and compositors).

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Re:Perhaps...

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on May 29, 2007 11:15 PM
whats with recommending youtube? If you want to talk about free as in freedom it's more like using Vegas than using Cinelerra.

<a href="http://www.engagemedia.org/Members/andrewl/news/freebeer/" title="engagemedia.org">http://www.engagemedia.org/Members/andrewl/news/f<nobr>r<wbr></nobr> eebeer/</a engagemedia.org>

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open/free video stabalizers (anti-shake) filters?

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 04:58 AM
Do any of these tools have filters to stabilize shaky video? I've been looking around for open/free video stabilizers. I found one plugin for Virtual Dub, but that's a Windows application. I'm using Linux. I am trying to enhance video taken in a paraglider, so a tripod is not an option. Too poor for optical stabilization.

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Re:open/free video stabalizers (anti-shake) filter

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 12:24 PM
Have you tried cinelerra? You can track (and fix) the "camera" on some object in the scene.

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Re:open/free video stabalizers (anti-shake) filter

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 01:30 PM
Virtualdub runs on Wine perfectly (just keep the directx switch off and use wine 24)

 

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Robin - UbuntuStudio is headed in your direction

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 05:24 PM
There is a distro called "Startcom Linux" that has some multimedia tools, and if you have multiple computers will cluster out of the box. WHAT would be interesting is if the dedicated group of Ubuntu folks that are doing a multimedia Ubuntu distro,
<a href="http://ubuntustudio.org/" title="ubuntustudio.org">http://ubuntustudio.org/</a ubuntustudio.org>
if they also would have it do clustering automatically when first installed?

Of course ubuntustudio.org would only use the tools available to them..., but for complex stuff that needed horse power, the "startcom linux" distro (based on Fedora) is worth looking at... and maybe ubuntustudio will follow their lead, regarding having clustering that is...

Has anyone an idea where <a href="http://ubuntustudio.org/" title="ubuntustudio.org">http://ubuntustudio.org/</a ubuntustudio.org>
is header, with regard to answering the needs that Robin has outlined?

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Corrections and Clarifications

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 16, 2007 09:25 PM
It definitely seems (with the exception of the author) to be the open source professional's choice.
It seems more like the only option. That's not the same as a choice.

and seen the dynamic change from almost completely unusable to practical and reliable, I have faith that Cinelerra has a bright future ahead.
But, for now, it remains clunky, slow and severely lacking in features and functionality. Which was precisely the point of the article.

The future may (or may not) be bright and rosy but, the here and now (as was the past several years) looks so bad it is almost completely unworkable.

#

Kino

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 17, 2007 12:10 AM
0.6 versions were fine for basic editing, transitions and titles for making home movies. You could output for DVD, divx and others with no problems. It has a plug-in architecture, so you need to install things like timfx if you want decent transitions.

0.7 changed the interface to GTK2 and things became unstable. Chapters would simply disappear, the interface became a pain. I gave up with it. Cinelerra was very stable at this point but had bugs tagging headers for 16:9 exports. Then they changed to v2 and it because unusable junk once again.

As far as I'm aware, kino development has died while the maintainers play with MLT. That was a good year or two ago, so who knows what they're doing now.

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Re:Kino

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 17, 2007 02:05 AM
The 0.7 versions of Kino are two to three years old. There have been many versions since then with bugfixes:

    <a href="http://sourceforge.net/project/showfiles.php?group_id=14103&package_id=11668" title="sourceforge.net">http://sourceforge.net/project/showfiles.php?grou<nobr>p<wbr></nobr> _id=14103&package_id=11668</a sourceforge.net>

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zs4

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 17, 2007 05:54 AM
Don't forget the rather "unique" ZS4, which is also free software... Still not high-end though, but useful. I don't understand why it's so little known... What do you think about it (from a "pro" point of view)?

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Re:zs4

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 17, 2007 06:04 AM
Answer to myself: Arg it's not free software, sorry, my mistake... Next time I'll verify with something more than my memory...

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Kino (non-obsolete opinion)

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 17, 2007 06:20 AM
> I have not yet succeeded in adding titles to Kino
> videos -- crash problems
So file a bug against broken Ubuntu package, dvtitler plugin worked for me like charm ever since I've figured out that removing *.la from package I maintain for ALT Linux was a bad idea (that's continuation of another story though). Including cyrillics which is generally much harder for broken software than your promitive ASCII.<nobr> <wbr></nobr>:]

> Kino is not, and is not intended to be, a viable
> professional-level video editor.
Yep.

> In another year or two, at its current development rate,
FYI its current official development rate is next to frozen, that is, stable/bugfixes.

> it should be roughly equivalent to iMovie or Windows Movie Maker.
<a href="http://kinodv.org/article/view/157/1/7/" title="kinodv.org">http://kinodv.org/article/view/157/1/7/</a kinodv.org> -- watch KDEnlive by that time.

Cheers for the article tho.

--
Michael Shigorin
shigorin/gmail

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Low End / Pro Video Editing Software

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 18, 2007 12:19 PM
Robin,

I have not used Vegas 7, but I have used and still use Pinnacle Studio and Liquid. I have found that it's interface is the least cluttered as compared to many of the free and pay for applications.

Unfortunately, it runs Windows only, so I am stuck with a Windows box I can not retire yet. I am hoping some of these projects will look at what Pinnacle has done, and take some cues from the workflow. It's very polished.

I really do want to use a Linux app for my video work, but until they mature enough, I have to stick with what pays the bills.<nobr> <wbr></nobr>...Paul

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LiVES in Brazil

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 22, 2007 12:51 AM
Since you are in Brazil, you might be interested in the following LiVES (<a href="http://lives.sourceforge.net/" title="sourceforge.net">http://lives.sourceforge.net/</a sourceforge.net> ) events:

FISL - Porto Alegre, RS 12th - 16th April
Estudiolivre - Sao Paolo - 18th - 24th April
Salvador, Bahia - date to be decide, but some time around May 16th - 18th.

- Salsaman

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Blender

Posted by: Administrator on March 16, 2007 06:49 PM
I won't claim that it's the easiest program to learn, but <a href="http://www.blender.org/" title="blender.org">Blender</a blender.org> has made enormous strides in the past few years, adding <a href="http://wiki.blender.org/index.php/Manual/Video_Sequence_Editing" title="blender.org">non-linear editing</a blender.org> as well as a very powerful <a href="http://wiki.blender.org/index.php/Manual/Compositing_Nodes" title="blender.org">compositing</a blender.org> system. It has an active community and is cross-platform, well-documented and stable.

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habits

Posted by: Administrator on March 16, 2007 03:21 AM
Robin, I think the key is what you are already used to. I have used Adobe Premier and Final Cut in the past, and definitely Cinelerra is different, although the timeline window may look similar to the Adobe products.

However, if you overcome the learning curve, there's nowhere close to 3-10 factor you mentioned. I bet that most time you spend with Cinelerra is learning what it can do. Same with emacs, blender, and anything else that is slightly more complex than an mp3 player<nobr> <wbr></nobr>:-)

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Re:habits

Posted by: Administrator on March 16, 2007 04:38 PM
I also used Premiere, Final Cut, and After Effects for many years, and am glad to hear of someone having a positive experience with Cinelerra. It definitely seems (with the exception of the author) to be the open source professional's choice.

However, maybe the author had flashbacks to the mid-90s after seeing the interface - I agree it does look very clunky. On first launching the application (which runs on intel machines only - lack of a ppc version definitely doesn't help it) I did wonder whether I'd made the right choice, moving from Mac to Ubuntu, and whether it could replace the mighty Final Cut.

But, having used Scribus for 18 months and seen the dynamic change from almost completely unusable to practical and reliable, I have faith that Cinelerra has a bright future ahead.

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A different reality

Posted by: Administrator on March 16, 2007 09:02 PM
I agree with Robin that, looking from a "professional" and "productivity" point of view, video editing with free software still has a way to go (no too long I think..).

But, here in Brasil, we are having an amazing experience.

First I have to say that what is affordable in north america or europe is not in Brasil. For you to have an idea, Premiere PRO is for sale at Amazon for U$800,00. When it comes to Brasil, due to taxes, it reaches R$4000,00 (US$2000 more or less - see <a href="http://compare.buscape.com.br/procura?id=30&raiz=2&kw=premiere&site_origem=980803" title="buscape.com.br">http://compare.buscape.com.br/procura?id=30&raiz=<nobr>2<wbr></nobr> &kw=premiere&site_origem=980803</a buscape.com.br>).

And you dont have to look only at the absolute price, but also to the fact that US$100 are much more expensive to us than to others, due to our salaries and everything...

You may apply this same logic to operating systems as well...

That been said, now I can tell you I worked together with many small (and large) cultural organizatins all over Brasil trough a governmental program called "Pontos de Cultra" (Cultural Hotspots), wich, among other things, supplied this hotspots with computer, camera and free software for video production.

This was a huge challange we started back in 2004, and its still going on. You have to see that, here in Brasil, FOSS is not only aonther option, its THE option for real independecy and autonomous production when they understand what FOSS is all about. And they do. People who had never had a computer before, or people who was used to crack pirat softwares and find they way out even if they didnt know a word in english.

I have to say how important it is in a poor country where 80% of the people watch only one tv channel to have the opportunity to create their own tv channels in a 100% autonomous way... but this is another story...

Back to the software, I dont think cinelerra, wich Ive been using a lot for the last years, is so far to be competitive with proprietary software. There are few features to be develop, bugs to be fixed. Bu what I think its missing is support from users. And this applies to many free softwares.

If the brazilian government not only distributed the software for free, but spent some money on its development, and if all professional video makers who wish to have a FOSS video editing software also invested money in it (along or instead of paying for licenses) we would have a much better software in no time.

Just wait for the magic developers good will wont help us. There is no magic. We are all part of it.

cheers

Leo,,

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Re:A different reality

Posted by: Administrator on March 16, 2007 09:04 PM
((same text, with line breaks<nobr> <wbr></nobr>:P ))

I agree with Robin that, looking from a "professional" and "productivity" point of view, video editing with free software still has a way to go (no too long I think..).

But, here in Brasil, we are having an amazing experience.

First I have to say that what is affordable in north america or europe is not in Brasil. For you to have an idea, Premiere PRO is for sale at Amazon for U$800,00. When it comes to Brasil, due to taxes, it reaches R$4000,00 (US$2000 more or less - see <a href="http://compare.buscape.com.br/procura?id=30&raiz=2&kw=premiere&site_origem=980803" title="buscape.com.br">http://compare.buscape.com.br/procura?id=30&raiz=<nobr>2<wbr></nobr> &kw=premiere&site_origem=980803</a buscape.com.br>).

And you dont have to look only at the absolute price, but also to the fact that US$100 are much more expensive to us than to others, due to our salaries and everything...

You may apply this same logic to operating systems as well...

That been said, now I can tell you I worked together with many small (and large) cultural organizatins all over Brasil trough a governmental program called "Pontos de Cultra" (Cultural Hotspots), wich, among other things, supplied this hotspots with computer, camera and free software for video production.

This was a huge challange we started back in 2004, and its still going on. You have to see that, here in Brasil, FOSS is not only aonther option, its THE option for real independecy and autonomous production when they understand what FOSS is all about. And they do. People who had never had a computer before, or people who was used to crack pirat softwares and find they way out even if they didnt know a word in english.

I have to say how important it is in a poor country where 80% of the people watch only one tv channel to have the opportunity to create their own tv channels in a 100% autonomous way... but this is another story...

Back to the software, I dont think cinelerra, wich Ive been using a lot for the last years, is so far to be competitive with proprietary software. There are few features to be develop, bugs to be fixed. Bu what I think its missing is support from users. And this applies to many free softwares.

If the brazilian government not only distributed the software for free, but spent some money on its development, and if all professional video makers who wish to have a FOSS video editing software also invested money in it (along or instead of paying for licenses) we would have a much better software in no time.

Just wait for the magic developers good will wont help us. There is no magic. We are all part of it.

cheers

Leo,,

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HENK

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 217.122.224.10] on September 20, 2007 06:58 PM
whats this?

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GNEVE - GNU Emacs Video Editor mode

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 89.132.185.42] on October 17, 2007 06:32 PM
GNEVE is based on mplayer and avidemux using Emacs, written in elisp.

GNEVE hompage: http://1010.co.uk/gneve.html
GNEVE WebMa devel branch: http://code.google.com/p/gneve-webma-dev/

GNEVE is not an All-in-One video edbasediting solution, it focuses yet only on Edit Decision List based editing using GNU Emacs as a base editor.

GNEVE is in alpha stage and ideal for a version controlled text-based and human readable film editing. For effects you still have to use your usual application.

We are working on VLC integration instead of mplayer.

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get your shit together

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 201.103.64.115] on January 03, 2008 07:54 PM
i think the main problem with opensource video editing softwares that the people that have the skills to program this kind of software usually dont have skills in filmmaking so they are mostly confused about the features that an editing software should have. neither do they ask the people that work in film business. almost all of the opensource editing projects that i have seen focus on effects, which any serious filmmaker never or barely uses. 90% of all good films dont need compositing.
often they dont even know the difference between compositing and editing. After Effects and Combustion are NOT editing softwares. Avid Mediacomposer or Final Cut are NOT compositing softwares.

i havent seen a single opensource software that properly handles the basics, which are:

LOGGING / CAPTURING (ntsc & pal video, 25/24p, SD / HD, DV/HDV, audio) without dropped frames, with correct timecode handling & working deckcontrol on firewire or RS322
import (video / audio / graphics) & import exchange formats like AAF, OMF, EDL, mix video formats like mp4, mp2, DV, HDV, etc pp.

SIMPLE EDITING (a timeline, a player window, a recorder window), hard cuts are fine for the beginning - but please in a logical UI

OUTPUTTING (transcoding to other digital formats, mp2, mp4 etc and playing out on DV and other recorders (again, with correct deckcontrol, timecode exact)

Summing up all the work that has been spent in Kino, LiVES, Cinelerra, Jahshaka, AviSynth, Virtualdub together, this application could exist but it doesnt. Instead there are a bunch of unstable compositing / editing hybrids with ugly user interfaces which are not usable. thats a little sad.

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Open source video editing still has a long way to go

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 69.144.73.52] on February 04, 2008 12:14 AM
and the point is software as opposed to specific hardware?
what's the stuff look like?

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What about the new manslide

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 124.170.87.182] on February 10, 2008 09:30 AM
Manslide is very good, unfortunately it uses QT4
http://opendesktop.org/content/show.php/Manslide?content=72739

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