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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
6 hours 20 minutes ago
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Video & Audio synching question' in the forum.
    6 hours 21 minutes ago

    HHHmmm... I've never had these issues at all. This is totally new to me.
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  • Szekely Zsolt thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' plug ins trouble shooting'.
    6 hours 25 minutes ago
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Auto-align' in the forum.
    9 hours 47 minutes ago

    You're looking for Stabilization. Only issue is if there is too much movement, you won't get super stability.
    help.apple.com/finalcutpro/mac/10.2/#/verbacf92b
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Gopro videos in fcpX' in the forum.
    9 hours 49 minutes ago

    YouTube, there's a few long threads here that discuss how to get YT video to look good.

    As for Apple TV, very simple. I do this almost daily. Export/Share as "Master File", then set Format to Apple Devices.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'plug ins trouble shooting' in the forum.
    12 hours 58 minutes ago

    Actually, un/re-installing FCPX is quick and easy. But it won't uninstall or fix a problematic plugin from a third party.

    Go to your system drive > Library > Application Support > Blackmagic Design. You'll find the Decklink stuff in there. If you don't have that hardware hooked up, delete the Decklink folder. Reboot your Mac, see if that takes care of it.

    if you do have that hardware, be sure to visit the BMD web site and update your BMD drivers and software to the latest versions.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Gopro videos in fcpX' in the forum.
    13 hours 10 minutes ago

    Render is something you do in the Timeline to improve playback.
    Share or Export is what you to do create a movie file on your hard drive when done editing.
    Frame rate shouldn't matter at all, if you're talking about exporting, keep it all at 60 if that's what you shot at.

    What do you want to play back on? Web, TV, iPhone? Each may have different requirements. If you're going to play it on a TV, how will you be doing that specifically?

    Web, share Master File, set Format to Web Hosting.
    TV, the same should work, depending on how you're getting it to the TV. Are you using iTunes with an Apple TV, or a USB stick, or what?
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'LPX Wins SOS 2016 "Best DAW"' in the forum.
    yesterday

    Pro ain't always cheap. The ones I use in my studio are more than $500.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'FCPX update to 10.2.3' in the forum.
    yesterday

    And now I think we can wrap up this discussion with the following thread.
    www.fcp.co/forum/4-final-cut-pro-x-fcpx/...g-fcs-legacy-vs-fcpx
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  • Ben Balser thanks user 'VidGreg' in the forum message ' 5 Year Comparative cost of owning FCS (legacy) vs FCPX'.
    yesterday
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic '5 Year Comparative cost of owning FCS (legacy) vs FCPX' in the forum.
    yesterday

    "Add in the fact that FCPX/Motion/Compressor all have received more features updates along with bug fixes (19 for FCPX alone) than legacy did for the same # number of years, I think we are getting a Fantastic Bargain for a Fantastic product."

    And THAT proves my point, when I say (privately) that folks complaining about lack of feature updates are just spoiled. HA!

    I'd always wanted to do this spreadsheet up myself. Thanks for posting this, VidGreg! Great job!
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  • Ben Balser created a new topic ' LPX Wins SOS 2016 "Best DAW"' in the forum.
    yesterday

    "At the NAMM show last week, we presented the SOS Awards, the only accolade in our industry of music technology voted for by the public. The awards celebrate the products that you, our readers, have deemed most worthy."

    See the list here.
    www.soundonsound.com/news?NewsID=19199
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'How should I manage my Drives in a 4 bay Thunderbolt Enclosure?' in the forum.
    yesterday

    Make the whole thing RAID 5. Dicking around with other cut up configurations will cause more slowdown and confusion than it's worth. You end up with a 12TB RAID 5 that is super fast and will give you about the best performance you'll see anywhere. We're using Pegasus P2 RAIDs for our show, with OWC RAIDs for backups. Because the P2s have faster through put than just about anything else. Our OWC backups are USB 3.0, not T'bolt.

    First, the more you cut up that RAID enclosure, the more storage space you lose.

    Use the FCPX Library system to manage your media, not cutting up a perfectly good drive.

    Once you RAID 2 or more drives, you can NOT remove them from that enclosure. That RAID unit has its own controller board, that ID's those drives, and needs to manage them. If you put them into a different RAID enclosure, they won't be recognized as belonging together.

    For collaboration, and we are doing this for a TV series, between 3 editors and a producer, none of whom are in the same city, is we set up our Libraries on our main working RAID during DIT. Then we clone that to a RAID for each editor, and one for the producer (plus backup for storing at the main office). All media is external. This way, we just send each other copies of the Library we're working on (XML sucks in FCPX, too much is dysfunctional, doesn't transfer). They're small enough to zip up and email or Dropbox to each other pretty easily. Plus we have versioning of those Libraries. Each episode is its own Library, BTW.

    Yes, you will need a second RAID to back up to. Even if you cut up that one RAID, it is a single enclosure unit, and needs a separate one for reliable backups. Because, although not common, RAID enclosures go bad, and you lose everything on all drives, no matter how they're configured.

    Don't put anything on your internal drive, period.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'X2Pro Audio Convert and FCP X 10.2.3' in the forum.
    yesterday

    Have you contacted the developer? Yeah, I think there's a few new bugs in this update...
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'FCPX update to 10.2.3' in the forum.
    yesterday

    KZ, details please?
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  • Ben Balser created a new topic ' Blast From The Past...' in the forum.
    yesterday

    I remember when this first came out, was hilarious. Wish someone would do a re-make for FCPX.
    www.youtube.com/watch?v=No18-olLtu4
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Lasso Selecting Connected Storylines' in the forum.
    2 days ago

    OK, cause you just said one clip, two storylines, which isn't a lot. But if you have to move them a lot, and this is a common occurrence, I'd look at your overall editing workflow. Again, you may need to be creating Compound Clips of these groups that need to stay together, from the beginning.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Export issue' in the forum.
    2 days ago

    What is the original codec of the clips?
    What codec are you trying to export with?
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Lasso Selecting Connected Storylines' in the forum.
    2 days ago

    Make them all a Compound Clip, perhaps.

    Cmd-clicking three items isn't a lot of work, or time consuming, I'd think.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Why Some Tutorials Are Annoying' in the forum.
    2 days ago

    OMG! ROFLMFAO!!!!!

    As a very long time educator, this is why I tell folks never rely on YouTube for training. I got my degree in educational psychology, I've taught actual scholastic classes, I use to help my mother design tests, I've done 3 decades of technical training in the 1-4 day seminar format, plus college courses lasting a whole semester. There's more to "teaching" than just running through crap like a dumass. So I'll explain what makes a good video tutorial.

    But before I explain what makes a good tutorial video, first, you have to understand what a video is, that the tutorial will be made out of. It is a series of still images, like photographs, or little drawings, that flash one at a time, at a steady pace, very quickly, to create the illusion of...

    :P
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'FCPX update to 10.2.3' in the forum.
    2 days ago

    ls that why Media Composer is NEVER updated? No, all NLE's are constantly updated with new features, improved workflows. Oh, except Avid, who is falling so far behind the times it isn't funny. I can get through work in FCPX in a fraction of the time I can in MC. If what you say is true, Arsecati, how are feature films being done in FCPX? How are reality TV shows being done in FCPX? From your claim, it is useless. Fact is, it isn't. And you couldn't pay me enough to go back to FCP7. Super full of bugs, very clunky, long winded workflow, unstable. And with a few exceptions (such as Ronney), as a freelance trainer, over the past decade +, I've seen a greater number and variety of Macs running FCP in a month that most do in a lifetime.

    So, what professional features STOP you from using FCPX? What is lacking that forces you to learn MC? Probably the most bug filled and difficult to use NLE on the planet.

    If MC is all that, why is it being updated all the time, like PPro and FCPX? Because Avid is making you beta test an NLE that is way too old and outdated, still?

    Your facts don't add up.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Anchor Points don't anchor in video keyframing' in the forum.
    2 days ago

    I can't tell exactly what you're doing in your video. But here's me adjusting just fine. I click on the keyframe point once, to select that point. The playhead should jump to that point. Then, I click and drag the point, or the object itself (arrow) to move it.
    bbalser.com/video/musicadjust.mov
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  • Dan Falcon is friends with Ben Balser
  • Ben Balser has changed their profile cover.

    2 days ago

  • Ben Balser has changed their profile cover.

    2 days ago

  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Best way to Scan Photos for Doc?' in the forum.
    3 days ago

    I'd save them as PNG for quality.
    Also, DPI simply determines what frame size you end up with in video. Let's say you're editing 1080 HD. Well that's a set frame size. DPI in your scan will effect how large (or small) that photo is in your timeline. 1200 DPI is fine, but how many pixel across, and how many high does that end up being? Compare that to your timeline frame size. So you could be blowing the image up larger, or shrinking it down too small in the Timeline, ether of which can cause issues. Scan at a DPI that will match more closely your timeline frame size.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Is there a pin tool (puppet tool) like feature in Motion 5?' in the forum.
    3 days ago

    Not yet, as far as I am aware. But I sure could use that sort of tool.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'The most annoying behaviour of FCPX GRRR how toavoid it' in the forum.
    3 days ago

    Being able to LOCK a Snapshot would be great. Then if you try to alter it, an alert would pop up, "Unlock this Snapshot in order to make changes, please."
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Anchor Points don't anchor in video keyframing' in the forum.
    3 days ago

    You are missing keyframes, that's all. I happen to do this with sheet music, being a composer and all. See if this helps. And yes, I skip lines of music, just trying to exaggerate to get the point across, that you are missing keyframe positions.
    www.bbalser.com/video/musicfollow.mp4

    Unless I'm missing what the problem is.
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  • Tokies thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' Is there a pin tool (puppet tool) like feature in Motion 5?'.
    3 days ago
  • freddy Ulvseth thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' Motion intro for YT movies?'.
    4 days ago
  • Robert J. Bloyer thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' Recommendations for USB mics (for voice overs)'.
    4 days ago
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Seeking entry (price) level SAN' in the forum.
    4 days ago

    You may also want to give the guys at FCPWORKS a call, this is what they do.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Motion intro for YT movies?' in the forum.
    4 days ago

    Yeah, that's a 3D model. Here's one for $59 at TurboSquid. It is a bit more high end that what is in the video you linked to. So I would assume cheaper, yet very nice, usable versions are out there somewhere.
    www.turbosquid.com/3d-models/3ds-dji-pha...-quadrocopter/857763

    You can place an object on a turntable of some sort, in front of a green screen, and video it spinning around. Composite that onto a video or photo or graphic background. A trike is a bit bigger, but same principle could be applied if you have the ingenuity and are resourceful enough.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Recommendations for USB mics (for voice overs)' in the forum.
    5 days ago

    You don't want to eat the pop filter, but you don't want to be too far away. An inch or three is fine. I'm usually very close to mine. I also speak across the front of my mic, not directly into it. Just how my voice works best with my MA-200. But in general, don't speak directly into the mic ribbon. Position the mic slightly above or below the mouth. Or, as I do, angle it about 45 degrees from your mouth, and off slightly to one side. Experimentation is vital to getting the right combination.

    If answering questions was a bother, I'd not be hanging out on forums. LOL
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Shift=F in reverse and color coding' in the forum.
    5 days ago

    What is this "bin" you speak off?

    Francois hit the points, that's about it. Color coding isn't here yet, but would be nice.
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  • Robert J. Bloyer thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' Recommendations for USB mics (for voice overs)'.
    5 days ago
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Motion intro for YT movies?' in the forum.
    5 days ago

    Or shoot the shot against a green screen.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'No support for XF-AVC from the Canon C300 Mark II' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    I know this is about the C300, but has anyone had experience with the Canon C-100 MkII? Does FCPX import that stuff alright?
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Recommendations for USB mics (for voice overs)' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    Proximity Effect
    Only works with directional mics, not with omni-directional mics.
    The closer the voice is to the mic, the louder, but more important, the more low end/bass the mic will pick up and record.
    Rule of thumb, voice talent, singing or VO, should start 3-6 inches from a mic, and experiment with recording closer, or further from the mic.

    Find the sweet spot, with a good mic, and you'll rarely need EQ on that voice. To remember the sweet spot, most pop filters are on a goose neck mount. So adjust it to bring the singer to the same sweet spot every time.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Final Cut Pro 7 to FCP 10' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    I can tell you in the end it will be such a royal PITA, it won't be worth the effort. Both of you need to get on the same NLE. Going between them will really slow you down, and not everything translates over. Been there, done that, will never touch a project that uses multiple NLEs. Not for all the money in the world.
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  • Robert J. Bloyer thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' Recommendations for USB mics (for voice overs)'.
    6 days ago
  • Robert J. Bloyer thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' Recommendations for USB mics (for voice overs)'.
    6 days ago
  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'The most annoying behaviour of FCPX GRRR how toavoid it' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    Not all bugs are universal. Some that seem so don't manifest exactly the same on all machines. There are so many possible combinations of hardware and software combinations, both Apple and third party, not every influence can be accounted for. Part is selecting beta testers is finding folks with very diverse systems to test on. In fact, the majority of bugs are not universal at all. That's the incomprehensible complexity of computer systems.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'FCPX update to 10.2.3' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    Yes, that is nice. And, bug fixes are very important. I can assure folks, from having beta tested in the past, there are lots of things in development that don't make a public release. There are also things in development that beta testers don't get to see. What is publicly released is not the total package of new features or enhancements that are being worked on. No software developer ever shows all their cards, ever.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Particles, replicator and fonts are reset when re-opening' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    Permission repairs is just automatic now. It's just a very simplified GUI, but the functionality is still built in.

    As far as the recent Motion update, couldn't hurt. But I honestly think it is the specific third party font. I've seen this several times before with third party fonts.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'Recommendations for USB mics (for voice overs)' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    I've used many of those reflector shields, and Samson's is the cheapest, I hate it. The Reflexion is the best on the market. And yes, there's HUGE difference in results. Reflexion makes a large one (we've been using it for almost 10 years and love it), and a smaller one that's really good. The "X Portable" will dance circles around the Samson, I've tested them.
    www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/ReflexionX

    Some folks hang up blankets, especially moving blankets (type used by moving companies to wrap furniture in the truck). Don't use those if you can afford it. Actual acoustic tiles, like Auralex, is fire retardant. Those blankets are fire hazards, super flammable. And some sheets of packing foam that are popular as a cheap alternative, give off toxic fumes. They weren't formulated to line walls of an enclosed room. Remember, you've got a lot of electronics, don't put fire hazards around them.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'FCPX update to 10.2.3' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    I think we'll still see a big feature update just before NAB. Very possible they had to fix some bugs before implementing new features/enhancements.

    Faster speed over SAN is a huge deal, though, for broadcast. That by itself is a step in the right direction for a pro app.

    I'd not blame the programmers or anyone on the FCPX team, they know what should be done. I'd blame the executive level, who were the ones responsible for the screwed up release of FCPX. They make a lot of dumass decisions about pro apps and productivity apps, that the dev teams find infuriating.
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  • Ben Balser replied to the topic 'The most annoying behaviour of FCPX GRRR how toavoid it' in the forum.
    6 days ago

    If you filled out the feedback page, they know.
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  • Bob Correa thanks user 'BenB' in the forum message ' FCPX update to 10.2.3'.
    7 days ago