13 June 2008

Tools, Sebsky Tools - Making Avid & FCP Play Nice

In a world... where many post production houses are finding themselves not only having to face the big expensive question of upgrading their NLE systems but also the debate of whether or not, as Apple so soothingly states, "to make the switch." I've seen it happen both ways, a large multi-avid-workstation facility goes FCP to save some bucks. A small independent documentary gets an unexpected grant, and the new seasoned editor refuses to touch FCP in light of her beloved Avid. And even then, another (highly unfavored) scenario: two editors cutting in both AVID and FCP at the same time. An assistant's worst nightmare.

It's not exactly easy to trade information between the two NLE's. They are after all, competitors, but beyond the corporate branding, they both capture, handle and manage your media very differently (especially in the days before Avid supported MXF). Avid with their OMFI (which by the way you still need to use in order to do a number of online operations), and FCP with meta-data embedded QuickTimes files. Even more difficult is the way both programs handle bins, making the moving or sharing of data.

Enter our hero/savior: Sebsky Tools from Dharma Film, a diverse tool for a range of applications. Foremost, this amazing tool allows you to use your FCP batch lists and Avid Log Exchange files as a way to share bins across the two platforms. Amazing! Thank you Dharma!

Another very fun feature I've been finding myself a fan of is the ability Sebsky Tools gives you to modify the Time Code of a QuickTime file. Now when I create a QuickTime from After Effects I can modify the time code easily. This is VERY helpful when doing a number of edit to tape functions, which we all know is enough of a pain in itself.

Best of all, Sebsky Tools is a freeware download with an optional donation to Dharma.
I highly recommend both.

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