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Capturing Footage > Capturing Footage - Pg. 99

· iMovie HD is a Mac OS X­only program. As a result, you gain a huge perk: Your Mac doesn't have to devote every atom of its energy to capturing video. While the importing is going on, you're free to open other programs, surf the Web, crunch some numbers, organize your pictures in iPhoto, or whatever you like. The Mac continues to give processor priority to capturing video, so your other programs may act a little drugged. But this impressive multitasking feat still means that you can get meaningful work or reading done while you're dumping your footage into iMovie in the background. If you click Import (or press the Space bar) a second time, the tape continues to roll, but iMovie stops gulping down footage to your hard drive. Your camcorder continues to play. You've just captured your frst clip(s). Automatic scene detection If you let the tape continue to roll, you'll notice a handy iMovie feature at work. Each time a new scene begins, a new clip icon appears in the Clips pane. The Clips pane scrolls as much as necessary to hold the imported clips. What iMovie is actually doing is studying the date and time stamp that DV camcord- ers record into every frame of video. When iMovie detects a break in time, it assumes that you stopped recording, if only for a moment, and therefore that the next piece of footage should be considered a new shot. It turns each new shot into a new clip. This behavior lets you just roll the camera, unattended, as iMovie automatically down- loads the footage, turning each scene into a clip while you sit there leafng through a magazine. Then later, at your leisure, you can survey the footage you've caught and set about the business of cutting out the deadwood. In general, this feature doesn't work if you haven't set your camcorder's clock. (JVC's high-defnition camcorders are the exception; they don't time-stamp your footage, but iMovie does recognize their scene breaks anyway.) Automatic scene detection also doesn't work if you're playing from a non-DV tape using one of the techniques described on page 115. Tip: If you prefer, you can ask iMovie to dump incoming clips into the Clip Viewer at the bottom of the screen instead of the Clips pane. You might want to do that when, for example, you flmed your shots roughly in sequence. That way, you'll have to do much less dragging to the Clip Viewer when it comes time to edit. To bring this about, choose iMoviePreferences and click Import. Where you see "Place clips in," click Movie Timeline. Click OK. Now when you begin importing clips, iMovie stacks them end to end in the Timeline instead of on the Clips pane. Importing Camcorder Footage If you would prefer to have manual control over when each clip begins and ends, iMovie is happy to comply. Choose iMoviePreferences, click import, and proceed as shown in Figure 4-7. chapter4:camcordermeetsmac 99