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After Effects as an editing tool

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jim bachalo
After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 12:08:33 am

Hi
Really would appreciate some feedback.
I have finished shooting video footage for a short 5 minute film and also done a rough edit in iMovie.
I need to edit now, a LOT of things I CAN'T do in iMovie, but have decided I want to go with the new FCP when it is released in June.

I also want to invest in and learn After Effects the next few months.

I need to edit my footage, but, Premiere is NOT an option since my 30 day demo long ago expired and have no desire in purchasing it.

Would it make sense for me to edit the short film using After Effects?
Does After Effects handle H.264 footage gracefully (from 5D/7D) or would I have to transcode it first?

Really any feedback appreciated, I've even considered using the open source LightWorksbeta but I'm mac based, and don't want to invest a week of ramp up time for an application I will only use for a few weeks!

Local is the new global


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Brian Charles
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 12:55:21 am

After Effects is not an editing application, you're far better off using iMovie for the edit and After Effects for effects, color grading work.

H264 is a long GOP format, it should be transcoded to an uncompressed format for After Effects. Search for "Dave's Stock Answer #1" on this forum to learn more.



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jim bachalo
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 1:07:29 am

Thanks for the tip re transcoding. I'm well aware AE is not an editing application. But as I mentioned in my query, I cannot do everything I need to in iMovie.
And since I plan on purchasing and mastering AE anyways, why not do it now and make it work for editing just this short film...

Local is the new global


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Walter Soyka
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 1:28:22 am

[jim bachalo] "I'm well aware AE is not an editing application. But as I mentioned in my query, I cannot do everything I need to in iMovie. And since I plan on purchasing and mastering AE anyways, why not do it now and make it work for editing just this short film..."

After Effects is a very powerful application, but it's really not a non-linear editor. AE is built for complex compositing, effects and animation. It doesn't have any real-time playback capability. It's totally unsuitable for editorial, as every single change you make must be rendered to a RAM preview before you can see the result.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Dave LaRonde
Re: After Effects as an editing tool: It Stinks
on Apr 15, 2011 at 1:39:05 am

[jim bachalo] "Would it make sense for me to edit the short film using After Effects?"

You really, Really, REALLY need to invest in a real-live editing application for your needs.

Final Cut Pro? Not unless you really like transcoding all your footage. That could change in the near future, as you might be aware.

Vegas? That thing's for Web Nerds and home moviemakers.

Premiere Pro? Yeah, it could do the job; it's too bad you don't like it: it could have been your NLE of choice.

Avid? Not a clue.

Something else? Yeah, there ARE other NLE's, and they can do a bang-up job, but they're either extremely pricey or they're extremely proprietary.

But no matter what you do, DO NOT USE AE FOR EDITING! It will only slow you down, frustrate your efforts and make you hate yourself for having aspirations as a film maker.

Heck, even iMovie's a better editor than AE.

Personally, I think you concluded that you needed an NLE at the wrong time.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 12:49:19 pm

Like all the others, I would NOT use AE as an editing tool - it will frustrate you!
Like Dave I agree that it is too bad you do not like Premiere Pro. If you will invest in a editing app, why not go with it? It's perfectly integrated with AE, it can easily handle all types of footage- from RED to DSLR to any kind of HD/DV- it's robust, fast and it can do all the things you want an editing app to do.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist


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jim bachalo
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 2:26:45 pm

Thanks. Yeah, am seriously considering it. Too many un answered questions about the new FCP X. Any idea if Premiere 5.5 will run on a 32bit iMac? I know AE 5.5 does not :(

Local is the new global


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Dave LaRonde
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 3:49:39 pm

[jim bachalo] "Any idea if Premiere 5.5 will run on a 32bit iMac? I know AE 5.5 does not..."

Ah, so THAT's the reluctance about using Premiere. Sorry, it won't run on your machine... and if you can't afford to get a new one, you're sort of stuck between a rock and a hard place right now.

Just out of curiosity: what sort of things are you trying to do that iMovie won't allow you to do?

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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jim bachalo
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 4:45:44 pm

there are more but these are the main 3
-color grade and correct
-add additional soundtracks...and sync sound properly
-pan and scan...need to crop in more and control the ramping..iMovie has only rudimentary pan and scan

Local is the new global


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 4:50:13 pm

In this case, AE can do 2 of those things. The audio will be a pain, but doable. Still, maybe Premiere CS4 should still be considered as an option if you can't upgrade your machine.
Just like Dave, out of curiosity, does your machine support only a 32bit operating system or the os you have is 32bit but your machine can take a 64 bit os? If it's the latter, I would highly recommend upgrading to a 64 bit OS so that you can take advantage of CS5 and 64 bit processing.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist


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jim bachalo
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 15, 2011 at 5:56:17 pm

32bit machine, 2nd generation 4-5 year old iMac.
Yes premiere cs4 works well...unfortunately my 30 day demo has expired.

I know 100% for sure I want AE, so will probably get Ae CS4 and see if I can make the AE-iMovie combo work somehow.
If not, will need to purchase Premiere CS4...

Local is the new global


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Jon Bagge
Re: After Effects as an editing tool
on Apr 16, 2011 at 9:12:46 pm

Maybe you should take a look at good old Lightworks. http://www.lightworksbeta.com/

It used to be the big NLE for serious film editors back in the day, before cool and hip Avid took over the world. Now that's a long time ago..

Anyway, it's now open source and free.

--------------
http://www.jonbagge.net
Jon Bagge - Editor - London, UK
Avid - FCP - After Effects


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