In Search of the NLE or How I Love the Search Tool

By Strypes

This is the age of Google. Search is everything, and nothing. Search is everywhere... and nowhere. Search is a powerful thing. If you can’t ?nd a shot, you can’t cut it into the show.

It has been close to a year since the release of FCP X. Every single NLE maker has just about responded to the FCP X release. Avid has released Media Composer 6, Adobe has released CS 6, Autodesk is on the verge of releasing a re-designed version of Smoke, with a more editor-friendly edit desk. Lightworks has been on the verge of releasing a version for the Mac OS since last year, which is due in the later part of this year, or maybe next year. Well, here’s a really simple feature that I loved in FCP 7 that has yet to be replicated on most of the NLEs that I have seen so far- search.

FCP has a great search tool. Media Composer has Phrase Find as an option that searches video for spoken words, and that demos to orgasmic applause from the audience. Media Composer also has the ability to sift individual bins, or perform a search across bins. Premiere also has a search function. However, if there is one thing that sets FCP’s search function apart from the other NLEs, and that is the ability to use FCP as a database for your rushes. This is one tool that I have been using for years, on almost every single project with enough footage for the project to require an editor to sit down and
make sense of the rushes.

Imagine you have a 30 day shoot, and you are trying to create a database of your rushes, which is what we usually do on large enough projects, so editors are able to share footage such as brolls, or interviews, etc... Or suppose you want to isolate rushes to ?nd a subject in a certain location across a few project ?les. In FCP, almost everything is searchable with“command f”. read more...

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