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The DV Camcorder > The DV Camcorder - Pg. 29

Title generator Some camcorders let you superimpose titles (that is, lettering) on your video as you flm. In your case, dear iMovie owner, a title-generating feature is useless. Your Mac can add gorgeous, smooth-edged type, with a selection of sizes, fonts, colors, and even scrolling animations to your fnished movies, with far more precision and power than the blocky text available to your camcorder. (Chapter 7 shows you how.) Tip: A title generator on the camcorder is actually worse than useless, because it permanently stamps your original footage with something you may wish you could amend later. In fact, as a general rule, you should avoid using (or paying for) any of the in-camera editing features described in this chapter--title generator, fader, special effects--because you can do this kind of editing much more effectively in iMovie. Not only are they redundant, but they commit you to an editing choice in advance, thus limiting how you can use your footage. Buying a DV Camcorder Fader Most DV camcorders offer a Fade or Fader button. If you press it once before pressing the Record button, you record a smooth, professional-looking fade-in from black- ness. If you press it as you're recording, and then press the Record button again to stop recording, you get a smooth dimming of the picture (and, usually, a fading of the sound), all the way to black (and silence). Even if your camcorder has a Fader button, don't use it, for several reasons: · Pressing the Fade button in order to trigger a fade-out is very diffcult to do. You're forced to look away from your subject to hunt for the button, and it's almost im- possible to keep the camera steady in the process. · iMovie offers much more graceful and controlled fade-ins and fade-outs. For example, you can specify exactly how many seconds long the fade should last, and you can even fade into a color other than black. · When you use your camcorder's Fade button, you risk chopping off one last great wisecrack from your kid as she rides into the sunset, or one last backfip by the seal at Sea World. In other words, once you've started the fade, you can't stop it. · If you need any more convincing, ask any camcorder owner about the embarrassment factor that comes from fading out on what he assumed would be the absolute perfect fnal shot, and then coming across another event that had to be included in the footage. When played back, the feeling of gentle, sighing fnality created by the fade- out is jarringly shattered by the sudden appearance of that tacked-on scene. Audio dubbing In a few fancy camcorders, you can rerecord only the soundtrack on a piece of tape you've already shot. If you didn't have a Mac, you could conceivably use this feature to add, for example, an accompanying rock song to a montage of party scenes. chapter1:thedvcamcorder 29