New to FCE and will be importing 1080 video (from a Canon a55 DSLR). I did read the help section but am still a little unsure as to what settings I should use in order to edit quickly and smoothly in the timlime. Finally, when exporting the project will it output the original HD video? I'm sure you have answered this many times so please know of my gratitude.
Final Cut Express uses the Apple Intermediate Codec. A lossy codec...not nearly as good as ProRes that FCP has. FCE cannot edit H.264 native...so you need to convert the video. Converting H.264 to AIC and then back to H.264 will be less than ideal...you'll notice the loss.
If you want to edit native, and export in the same codec, then you should look at Premiere Pro.
Thank you very much, exactly what I needed to know. One last question though. Being on a shoe string budget a new Mac is not in the story board. If I were to buy an earlier copy of FCP for my G5 (purchased in 2005 but has been upgraded) what version would be best? Again, thank you and best wishes.