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Importing Video Files

Bringing video material into Pro Tools is very simple. Making sure that the video material is of the proper format and type for your needs might not be that simple. If QuickTime movies are provided for you in data format on DVDs, CD-ROMs, or hard drives, then importing them directly can be quick and painless. If you are provided with videotape and cannot sync to the VTR directly, then you’ll have to digitize the footage yourself and create a compatible QuickTime movie. Even if you can sync directly to this VTR, you may still want to digitize the footage in order to take advantage of the non-linear aspect of QuickTime movies in Pro Tools. With VTRs, you must locate the deck to different locations in your session. QuickTime movies locate instantly to any location in your session and remain in frame-accurate sync with your session no matter what type of editing you’re doing. Wherever your cursor is, the QuickTime movie will instantly locate to that position.

Keep in mind that the larger-size QuickTime movies (720×480) can use more system resources. This may limit the amount of RTAS plug-ins and audio tracks you can use. Most new Macs can view DV movies natively and do not tax the CPU. The DV codec does not require any large amount of CPU time to decompress; hardware on the motherboard handles this and frees the CPU up for DSP. However, the file sizes are quite large and may require a dedicated hard drive.


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