Media 100- stay or go?
Aaagh-- what happened to my post??
Anyway-- to recap--
I recently inherited a studio using Media 100, versions 7.5-8.2 on 5 different Macs of varying power. 1 Mac is a G5; 1 is a G4 w/ dual processors; 3 are G4's with single processors.
I'm having a terrible time teaching the program to my high school students. It seems to have lots of errors, isn't very intuitive, and the students and I are all struggling mightily. I've taught video production before, so it's not like I'm a novice, but I sure can't seem to wrap my head around this... The lack of tutorials, training videos, and so on don't help much either. I do have the tutorial books that came w/ the software, but it's a struggle to get the kids to work thru someone else's footage and get it going. So far they each filmed a short countdown and have spent the past 2 hours downloading maybe 1 minute of video, splitting, trimming, and adding a title. They're at maximum frustration limit, and so am I!
Is the new Media 100 version 12.whatever any better? Does the Audio menu get any clearer and easier to use? Is the titler any easier? Can you convince me that it's a worthwhile investment?
Does the new version use that big gi-normous clunky power toolbar thing that goes into the video card in the back of the Mac? If it doesn't use that, how does it import/export audio and video? Thanks for any help you can give!
My name is Wickham Strub, I'm the Product Manager for Media 100 edit systems at Boris FX.
The problem I see for you is that moving to ANY other NLE (besides perhaps an older version of iMovie) will require new Macs to make the move worthwhile. Having started my NLE experience years ago as a Video Production teacher, I can imagine how easy it'll be for you to get 5 new Macs with new versions of NLE software.
I'd like to talk to you more about your options. Send me your contact info in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with my name, Wick, in the subject line so I can contact you off-list.
A bit of clarification re: my previous post. I realize that it could be taken that I'm saying, "You're stuck on M100." That's not what I'm saying at all. When I wrote "ANY NLE" I was including the new M100 software as well. The only Mac that you currently own that is likely to give you a good experience with the latest M100 software is the G5, and even that depends on the specs of the computer.
I am a little bit surprised by your post, since I tend to believe that from all professional editing applications I know (and I know quite a few) Media 100 has the big advantage that it is the most intuitive and streamlined one. I always thought and got the feedback that anybody who has some basic understanding of a Mac and of the basic concepts of video editing would find their way around in Media 100 easily.
Maybe I am wrong there, though.
The UI and the workflow of V12.7 (and the upcoming V13) of Media 100 still are based on the same workflow you see in V7 and V8, but of course with many improvements and new features.
One very basic thing you could do is to check out the Media 100 V8 tutorial to get an understanding about the basic workflow and interface. Plus, the Media 100 manuals (partially available as PDFs on the Media 100 FTP server or on your Install CDs) are very good and should also give you some hints.
I'll add my 2 cents here. Everything Floh said is absolutely true. Media 100 is the most intuitive, easiest-to-learn system I've ever used, and that's why I've stayed with it all this time.
About 10 years ago, when I was working in a large education office, I trained a group of high school "behavior problem" students on Media 100. I only had a few days, but within the first day they were making 1-minute MTV-style videos. They loved it.
Now that Boris owns Media 100, there is more reason than ever to stay with it. They've made great product improvements and they're listening to their customers.
Whatever you decide, I wish you the best.
My two cents is also that Media100 is the most intuitive. I moved to FCP a couple of years ago and am now considering going back to Media100, since I already own two contracts.
I do not know about availability of tutorials, but I agree that those would be very helpful. I use them all the time for other applications. Perhaps that could be a class project - to make tutorials for other students.
[Terri Brantz] "I'm having a terrible time teaching the program to my high school students. It seems to have lots of errors, isn't very intuitive, and the students and I are all struggling mightily."
No offense but if you are having trouble teaching Media 100, then I would tell you to forget about even trying an Avid, Final Cut or Premiere Pro.
Without a doubt, Media 100 is the easiest to learn of all the systems and (like Floh) I know how to use most of them and have for years. I own Avid Media Composer (and used to have an Avid Xpress system long ago), Apple Final Cut, Adobe Premiere Pro and I like them all. My favorite is Media 100 because when I edit I am mostly doing straight cuts and Media 100 is almost invisible to the editor.
I once set-up the University of Mississippi Film School with Media 100s back when David Hutto was the head of the department. I sent one of our people out and he took one day to teach them.
[Terri Brantz] "I've taught video production before, so it's not like I'm a novice, but I sure can't seem to wrap my head around this... The lack of tutorials, training videos, and so on don't help much either."
I think you are probably complicating the issue. Media 100's greatest feature is its lack of features. You are likely thinking things through too much and are looking for things that are not there.
Want to know why there aren't many Media 100 tutorials around? They are not needed. Never have been.
I used to say that I could teach Media 100 to a dead person in a couple of hours; if they are breathing, I could do it even faster.
I still believe Media 100 is the simplest to learn, most intuitive and easiest to operate nonlinear system ever developed.
And that comes from the guy that started this site and knows most of the editing systems that have been developed over the years.
Thanks for your feedback regarding Media 100--- I still haven't decided which direction to go. I've been going through the most basic steps, writing my own tutorial for my students, and they're finding some success in getting started, which is good. Someone said there were good tutorials on here, but I can't seem to find them-- I went to the Media 100 Tutorials button at the top of the page, and I encountered a series of articles about the program, but not much in the way of tutorials. There was one tutorial on adding back-to-back graphics, but that's all I found. If there's another way to find them, I'd appreciate a steering in the right direction.
Some of my basic frustrations have been: a variety of levels of M100 on 4 different computers, resulting in different commands on different machines for the same function; the whole digitizing experience, regarding using different cameras with different audio levels; importing audio separately and trying to turn down the audio tracks on a variety of clips-- there must be a way to turn down an entire track? and I'm somehow missing where to create a 'scene' of my work on the timeline, so that I have an error-free copy in the bin to revert to if my original gets hopelessly messed up.
I'm also struggling with trying to import different online audio clips, which require a higher version of QuickTime than Media 100 allows. What do you all do in this case? Is there a work-around? Render times are enormous, which is due in part to the ages of my Macs. The students keep double-clicking faster than the program can recognize their click, which results in having to completely shut down M100 and re-open it. They've also struggled with the audio imports via firewire-- some cameras import in 48,000 Hz, some in 32,000 Hz, and the program jumps back and forth between them, regardless of what they've set up in the Preferences and Hardware menu. They can't ever record their first 20 seconds or so of video, since they have to keep clicking "OK" on the audio window when the program jumps back and forth. A work-around is to record 20 seconds or more of black before they begin, of course, but there must be a solution other than that.
I'll be using the program during this semester at least, and I'd appreciate any advice you have, other than the "you're too stupid to use this" variety. Thanks!
Terri in Wyo.
[Terri Brantz] "There was one tutorial on adding back-to-back graphics, but that's all I found. If there's another way to find them, I'd appreciate a steering in the right direction. "
Look into my first post on your question, there is a link to the Media 100 V8 tutorial (which is pretty good as far as I can remember).
[Terri Brantz] "Some of my basic frustrations have been: a variety of levels of M100 on 4 different computers, resulting in different commands on different machines for the same function;"
Hmmm, I think the Media 100 shortcuts have only changed slightly over the years. Do you have an example of a command that changes between the versions?
[Terri Brantz] "importing audio separately and trying to turn down the audio tracks on a variety of clips-- there must be a way to turn down an entire track? and I'm somehow missing where to create a 'scene' of my work on the timeline, so that I have an error-free copy in the bin to revert to if my original gets hopelessly messed up. "
Actually, in the audio mixer window you have 2 modes, a "track" mode and a "clip" mode. If you adjust a fader in the "track" mode you adjust the whole track, if you are in Clip mode you (obviously) adjust only a single clip.
Regarding your timelines: this works a little bit different than e.g. an Avid; much more like a "regular" Mac program. You save your timelines (programs) individually, separated from your project file (try think e.g. like in Photoshop). If you save your timeline under a new name, e.g. YourTimelineName V2, you will still have your "old" timeline named YourTimelineName on your drive (and in your project), and you can return to the old version immediately, just as you would do e.g. with a .PSD file in Photoshop.
[Terri Brantz] "They've also struggled with the audio imports via firewire-- some cameras import in 48,000 Hz, some in 32,000 Hz, and the program jumps back and forth between them, regardless of what they've set up in the Preferences and Hardware menu. They can't ever record their first 20 seconds or so of video, since they have to keep clicking "OK" on the audio window when the program jumps back and forth. A work-around is to record 20 seconds or more of black before they begin, of course, but there must be a solution other than that. "
You ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO MAKE SURE that you set all your DV cameras to record at 48kHz. There is nothing you can do in Media 100 about that; if somebody did record at 32kHz you cannot change that later on; the transfer via FireWire is a data transfer and does not actually change the incoming data, so you cannot acquire 32kHz material in 48kHz via FireWire (you could use the analog audio inputs to do that). But this problem is a very basic video problem and not specific to Media 100!!!
One thing you should be aware of is that you are working with a very old hardware/software combo. There are many improvements in the newer versions that would make your life easier.
[Terri Brantz] "I'm also struggling with trying to import different online audio clips, which require a higher version of QuickTime than Media 100 allows. What do you all do in this case?"
What kind of audio clips are these? .mp3 and .aiff files should be supported even with your V7.5 systems. .aac files are probably not supported. You could e.g. use a laptop to convert the files, or you could play them back e.g. from an iPod and record into the Media 100 system via an analog input (e.g. with an RCA to minijack cable).
If you can be a little bit more specific with your questions we definitely can give you even better advice. And you really should have a look at the mentioned tutorial to get up to speed with the basic concept of Media 100.
Thanks for your info on the tutorials-- I can't access the link in your previous post because apparently it's a Mac file and (sigh) my district won't allow Macs to be connected to the internet. This is the message I receive, suggesting I purchase a program to convert it--
"File Type: Macintosh Bin-Hex Packaged File
File Extension: .hqx
Description: Macintosh Bin-Hex files are files that are packaged for download over the internet. "
I'll have to see if I can access it on my laptop at home... thanks for the info! Did I mention I'm in a PC-rules district, and I'm fighting to keep the Macs I have? Even though Macs are industry-standard, and PCs have all kinds of compatibility issues, not to mention virus vulnerability, our tech people don't support Mac use in any way, shape or form. When I went to the Dark Side and bought a Mac PowerBook Pro for my own use, it's almost like I converted my citizenship or something.
Anyway-- thanks for your info. I appreciate it!