Editing Today: Beyond the NLE

Filmmaker by David Leitner

David Lean once called editing the soul of filmmaking. Today it?s more like the Mission Control.

You?ve got to understand pixel counts, bit rates, bit depth, color sampling, sampling frequencies, frame rates, codecs, RAW files, deBayering, audio channels, waveform displays, vectorscopes, audio levels, LUTs, proxies, file-wrappers, Log gammas, XML, titling, effects ? need I go on? Arcane stuff that used to be the domain of video engineers with EE degrees.

To ensure a smooth and efficient postproduction ?workflow? (term borrowed from I.T.), you must know about cameras too: which frame sizes they capture, which codecs they employ, which gammas they apply, which file wrappers they add. Speaking of I.T., you must know how much disk storage you?ll need for both media and render files, how blazingly fast your drives must be (RAID 0 anyone?), and how fat the pipes must be ? FireWire 800, USB 3.0, eSATA, Thunderbolt 1 & 2, in order of faster throughput.

As you ingest camera footage, you must decide how to organize it for the edit and beyond. Will it be backed up? How much will be archived? To optical discs, hard drives, linear tape, the cloud? How will you keep track of everything during post? How will someone in the future figure out what?s what, and where? read more...

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