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Ben Balser

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Ben Balser

About Me

Basic Information

  • About me

    Apple Certified Master Trainer and teach regularly for The Orchard Stores (AATC) in Louisiana, and as an independent / freelance trainer for AATC's, corporate, worship, High School, higher education and broadcast facilities across the US. Runs www.finalcutpro.guru when there is time. Retired IT Engineer of 25+ years. Producer, consultant, educator, author, composer. Began composing at 5, grew up in recording studios, began filmmaking at 13. Slowly moving towards composing exclusively, but still taking on a small few specialty post-production projects for now. Father, husband, then the “long strange story”, and we’ll stop there.

Contact Information

Member since
Tuesday, 26 July 2011 12:15
Last online
7 hours 26 minutes ago
  • Peter thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' FCPX freezes after rendering problems?'.
    yesterday
  • bull thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' "upgrade" from 2012 rMBP to 2009 Mac Pro?'.
    yesterday
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic '3d text reflection' in the forum.
    2 days ago

    What he's doing is pretty easy. That's pretty much how I'd do it for that specific situation.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic '3d text reflection' in the forum.
    2 days ago

    Exactly what do you mean? The color solid thing works just fine with 2D and 3D text. Do you mean reflection of text, in a video that is in a Drop Zone? Use a Drop Zone instead of a color shape.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic '"upgrade" from 2012 rMBP to 2009 Mac Pro?' in the forum.
    2 days ago

    No, not necessarily a "monster", because that CPU is not all that. You'd do better with a new iMac and T'bolt RAID.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Those who do weddings, how do you ask for reviews?' in the forum.
    3 days ago

    Survey Monkey, free, put in 4 easy, yet pertinent questions, end with a comment box.

    Or just blatantly ask for testimonials in an email. I used to snail mail them a request, on nice paper, carefully handwritten, make it look like you took the time to make the effort, shows you care, motivates a client more.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Getting rid of audio plugine' in the forum.
    3 days ago

    FCPX reads all Audio Unit plugins, as does Logic Pro X and Garage Band. You need to do a proper removal. You may be finding some of the system files, but obviously not all. I'd contact Line 6 tech support and find out how to do that.

    FYI, I have a Line 6 guitar (which is up for sale), great ax, but I never installed the plugins.

    Yeah, Line 6 can tell you what components you may be missing to uninstall it.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Aged Film Effect Issue' in the forum.
    3 days ago

    Yes, because reinstalling an app has become very fast and super easy. As opposed to when folks reinstalled the whole OS from scratch to fix things. Files on computers get corrupted, not nearly as much as they once did, but it happens, always will, nature of the beast.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'FCPX freezes after rendering problems?' in the forum.
    3 days ago

    You should see more stability and smoothness after that, for sure.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'FCPX freezes after rendering problems?' in the forum.
    3 days ago

    OK, since this is after another issue, I'm thinking hardware. Do you have issues with any other apps on your system?

    You could try using "FCS Remove", free from Digital Rebellion (dot com) to totally remove FCPX (won't touch Libraries or media), and reinstall it.

    Have you run Disk Utility's First Aid process on all your drives?
    How much RAM is installed?

    Hhhmmm...
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'FCPX freezes after rendering problems?' in the forum.
    4 days ago

    What are the capacity of your drives, and what are the percentages as free space?
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Stabilization' in the forum.
    5 days ago

    Lock & Load, yes, thanks.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'chroma key issues' in the forum.
    5 days ago

    Sounds like the matte is too feathered, or some other matte tool needs to be tweaked, perhaps.
    help.apple.com/finalcutpro/mac/10.2/#/ver40b003bc
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Need to Animate 3D Tech Drawings' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    mObject does excellent shading.
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  • Peter thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' Rendering problems after moving Library'.
    6 days ago
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Waiting on 10.2.4 and 10.3' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    daviddelreal wrote:

    OSX update today, FCPX tomorrow???

    No correlation between the two historically.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Simon Ubsdall's SuperSearchField... Universal Smart Collection' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    "Remember how long it took you to get your head around the basics concepts of FCP X when they first came along?"
    Yeah, like 2 minutes. That was the beauty of it originally.

    "Why so dismissive and critical Ben?"
    Because Karsten asked for opinions, and I gave mine, honestly and as I see it, as asked. Really? Why so conformist, dude?

    Either way, you're still entering Keywords, and Simon states that is outdated. But he STILL does it in his "groundbreaking" workflow. I'm simply pointing out, when asked to, the contradiction in this technique. So what? Attack the guy with the differing opinion? That's really productive...
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Rendering problems after moving Library' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    1st, why move it to the system drive? Not the best place for it.

    2nd, turn of Background Rendering.

    3rd, delete pref files.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Simon Ubsdall's SuperSearchField... Universal Smart Collection' in the forum.
    7 days ago

    Realistically, if you don't have a post team with assistant editors to keyword, rename, etc, everything for you, then you're obviously not doing projects that large. This technique would never survive the TV show I'm working on now. Way too much, we need to search dialog that is in the notes fields, and this won't do that. Because we don't attach that metadata anywhere. And if we do, then this technique is not doing anything different. Not sure how this technique would find all my B-Roll from a snowmobile tour, as opposed to my B-Roll from a whitewater rafting tour, as opposed to an interview clip. Not sure how that'd be done without keyword collections. Oh, but he does that, in the Finder, EXACTLY like in the Browser.

    It is an interesting trick, but it is only a parlor trick, not productive without tagging metadata that ends up as keywords. So I open this Master Search smart collection. I have to uncheck keyword collection I've previously checked, check the ones I want to search, and then I see what I want to see. Or, I just click once on the Keyword Collection normally. Not seeing it.

    Again, I'm playing with this on my system, also. Nice concept, but having to make keyword collections, using metadata, it is all still necessary to input that. No difference is being made. I don't get how this is different. I so see it making things MORE complicated and taking MORE time to achieve.

    I don't discuss FCPX with other NLE users unless they're at an FCPX event, or specifically ask me something. I don't have time for the flame wars anymore.
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  • Lorena thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' Stabilization'.
    7 days ago
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Background Replacement' in the forum.
    7 days ago

    Have you tried just using the Keyer and a garbage matte? Worked just fine for me. The shirt gets picked up by the Keyer, so a duplicate copy on top of it (Opt-drag) with a Draw Mask covering the white sleeves and shirt fixes that. SliceX may be able to make shape masks that track the sleeves while he moves his arms.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Relinking xml with .mxf files to .mov media' in the forum.
    7 days ago

    You optimized the media during import, correct?
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Stabilization' in the forum.
    7 days ago

    TrackX from Coremelt is about the best stabilizer you'll find. And keep in mind, if there is TOO MUCH shake, movement, jitter, then NOTHING will fix it well at all. Can you post a sample clip?
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  • Danice Tran thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' Cutting a text in Motion 5'.
    7 days ago
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Simon Ubsdall's SuperSearchField... Universal Smart Collection' in the forum.
    7 days ago

    "My recommendation would be to think about ways of embedding metadata probably more systematically than you might have done otherwise."

    That's the same thing as using Events and Keywords, embedding metadata, just in the Finder, rather than in the Browser. What's the difference? You still need Keyword Collections with his method. Without keywords, how would you fine "In-Flight B-Roll" clips? Or would you add that keyword in the Finder (as per the quote I supplied), rather than in the Browser, and the Browser is much easier to do that with.

    The statement that creating locations to store things is old fashioned, is bull. I don't buy it. Fancy sounding words, but defy reality. He's creating something that sorts things out. I don't find searching Events for my Keywords difficult at all. I find it really easy and quick. Not sure why it all of the sudden is outdated.

    Sorry, nice concept, but the editor STILL need to add metadata, which is what keywords is. He's just doing it in the Finder, rather than the Browser. Same process, different location, doesn't make it "different" or "easier".

    Nope, I don't buy it. Sorry.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Zoom function switching to Viewer while working on Timeline' in the forum.
    7 days ago

    Hope you guys are reporting this to Apple.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Relinking xml with .mxf files to .mov media' in the forum.
    7 days ago

    Observation from your screen shot, "ME029401" is not the same file as "ME0294". That "01" on the end makes it a totally different file name, meaning you're looking at two different files for comparison.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Slip video only' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    Yes, I had forgotten about that. If you open a clip that is in a Timeline, you only alter that copy of the clip. The master clip, in the Browser, is unaffected. Problem is, you can't exactly compare in/out points during the Slip edit process, to your neighboring clips.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Issues with Settings for preparing a file to upload to Smugmug' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    You can always go into Compressor, make a custom preset dialed in only for that video service. Use it to create a custom Destination in FCPX.

    Or "Send To Compressor" and adjust frame rates and sizes there.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Slip video only' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    Oh, I just noticed, "video only". Yeah, that's gonna require you detach the audio, then do a slip on the video portion. No way around that.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Slip video only' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    There are three techniques for Slip Edits:

    1-Mouse
    Hit "T" for the Transform tool.
    Mouse over a clip.
    Click & drag the filmstrip left and/or right.
    Presto, Slip edit tool.

    2-Nudge
    "T" for the Transform tool.
    Click on the center of a clip once.
    The head and tail edit points highlight.
    Use the < and > keys to nudge a Slip edit one frame at a time.

    3-Timecode
    "T" for the Transform tool.
    Click on the center of a clip once to select it.
    Click once on the Timecode reader in the Dashboard (center of Tool Bar) to activate it.
    Type in standard SMTE timecode and the clip will Slip that amount. Start with either + or - so FCPX knows if you're Slipping left or right.

    User Manual Page;
    help.apple.com/finalcutpro/mac/10.2/#/ver1632d8e4
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic ''Relink Files' won't mend 'Missing Proxy'' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    Glad it worked. I love simple, quick solutions.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Export help please. Youtube is killing me' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    If you upload a ProRes 422, full resolution file to YT, and you get pixelation, that's on the YouTube end for sure. Being caused by the water (rather undefined edges) moving too fast, and the YT compression system can't deal with it very well.

    Only think I can think of it take this from FCPX directly into Compressor. Place "Compression Markers" just before each shot of the boats spinning in the water. Export ProRes, upload that to YT.

    Or do the same, export as H.264 according to YT guideline settings. See if you see the pixelation then.

    May not be anything you can do about it, if it is on the YT end. Unless maybe contact YT tech support. Do they have such thing?
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Best Workflow for FCPX to Logic 9' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    Maybe using X2Pro to translate, as much as possible, the XML to LP9, if they're compatible, I'm not sure.
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  • Joe Fonebone thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' 'Relink Files' won't mend 'Missing Proxy''.
    1 week ago
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Drobo 5n is altering FCPX Libraries' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    I just had to work with Drobo RAIDs, and I HATE them. Even a Drobo T'bolt RAID is way too slow to edit off of. Not that this fixes anything, just hate them so much I can't keep my mouth shut.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic ''Relink Files' won't mend 'Missing Proxy'' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    For missing proxies, simply regenerate them. If they already exist, FCPX will simply relink. If they're missing for real, FXCPX will recreate them.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Duplicate of all clips in library' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    It is possible to manually duplicate a clip in the Browser, but if it is happening automatically, something is wrong. I'd post that to the FCPX feedback page ASAP.

    If you delete several of those duplicates, quit, relaunch FCPX, are they fixed, or still duplicated?
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Waiting on 10.2.4 and 10.3' in the forum.
    1 week ago

    On my desktop screen, yes, but not on my MBP screen...

    First rule of architecture is, don't fill empty space, just because it's empty, it has a purpose.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Adjusting the Audio level between 2 keyframes' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    Good call! That's right, Option-up/down arrow works! Nice, thanks for the correction!
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Duplicate of all clips in library' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    I've seen this in a long ago previous version as a bug, but that was fixed long ago, and I've never seen it or heard of it since.

    Right off the bat, make sure to check the Browser Clip Filter, top left of the Browser pane. If it is set to show only Favorites or not show Rejected, then yes, you'll see that clip cut up into sub-clips that are the result of showing only, or not showing, specific ranges in the clip.

    Here's a clip in full, with Favorite ranges. Next, the same clip showing only the Favorite ranges.


    [File Attachment: ScreenShot2016-05-12at10.29.12AM.png]



    [File Attachment: ScreenShot2016-05-12at10.29.30AM.png]
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'FCPX 10.2. Starts off screen' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    Whew! That's good you got is solved so quickly. Love a simple solution.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'NORTH LONGON STUDIO work placement assistant required.' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    My broadcast/film post-production studio works long distance all the time. Would you consider working with someone in a different location? Since remote collaboration is so advanced and such. Just wondering.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Waiting on 10.2.4 and 10.3' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    The only way I'd want more inside the Import window, is if it could be done without cluttering it up. Where would all those fields and prompts go? Only way I see this working, without creating a visual catastrophe is in a floating HUD, like in Motion. Yes, it'd be nice to have, but how would you lay that GUI out?
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Adjusting the Audio level between 2 keyframes' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    Nope, mouse only operation. Grab the line between the two, and drag. Very simple, not complicated, and if you make the clip high tall enough, and zoom in properly, you can be very precise.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Moving up from MMS i7/16Gb/SSD' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    Background Rendering should be turned off. Rarely does it need to be turned on. Turn it off, render only what you need to, when you need to, manually.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Audio guy here, need help exporting in FCPX!' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    "'source apple proves 422'"... except thats not the source because the source as I received it from the editor is H.264"

    1- No, all rendering in your timeline is ProRes, so yeah, you're going out to ProRes 422, and jumping to conclusions before properly learning the software. Reading the user manual helps, too. All those export options were in the old FCP, also. An no, few folks are still on the legacy version.

    2- H.264 is as compressed a video codec as you can get. So you're starting with super highly compressed files (as stated previously).

    3- ProRes will not lose any image quality, even over several generations, and is exactly what you want to use.

    4- You can't have "uncompressed" video AND "small" file sizes at the same time, just like you can't have zero gravity and stand on the earth's surface at the same time.

    "So, my question is how can I export without compressing anything more? The file size should end up roughly the size of the audio and video files are before I even imported them."

    5- I can see that you have zero education in video editing workflow and codecs. You're grossly misinformed. Not being mean, just trying to help you understand your misconceptions. Listen to the folks here, they're very knowledgable, very experienced. To the point, you started with SUPER HIGHLY COMPRESSED VIDEO, so if you want to export something uncompressed, it will, according to physics, be LARGER than that super highly compressed video codec you started with. That's just physics, and legacy FCP would do the exact same thing, just make the process more lengthy and painful.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Waiting on 10.2.4 and 10.3' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    Yes, one of the tricks we use, also. Glad you mentioned that FernKraft.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Need help! What is this effect?' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    Yep, build it in Motion yourself, or start teaching. Check MotionVFX.com because I think they have some templates similar to this.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Changing limiter settings on multiple clips?' in the forum.
    2 weeks ago

    Actually, Apple had a patent filed for a Roles base mixer and meters when FCPX first came out. We still haven't seen it. And LOTS of folks have asked for it. One could only hope.


    [File Attachment: FCPXMixers.jpg]


    [File Attachment: FCPXMeters.jpg]
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