New Stuff - Cool Stuff
Nov. 18, 2013
In This Issue
Become a Member
All Kinds of Cool Stuff
Video Compression Basics
Compressing WebM Takes Forever!
FCP X: Merge Storylines
Mac OS X: Turn off drive ownership
Compressor 4 Training
Top 3 Lists
FCP X Training
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Larry Jordan Here in the States, we are counting down the days until the Thanksgiving holiday next week. But, in the meantime, I have a lot of new stuff for you this week: a flock of short notes, cool new webinar, new featured interview and FOUR new articles!

But, first, an update on data loss with Western Digital drives.


Caution or warning bullet If you remember, when Mavericks shipped, Western Digital put out an alert stating that some of the software that runs their hard disks was incompatible with Mavericks. "Until the issue is understood and the cause identified, [Western Digital] strongly urges our customers to uninstall these software applications on their systems before updating to OS X Mavericks (10.9), or delay upgrading."

The software affected includes WD Drive Manager, WD Raid Manager and/or WD SmartWare. When these are installed on a Mac that is upgraded to OS X Mavericks the Western Digital device can lose the data stored on the external drive.

Since then, I haven't heard anything further on this issue. So, I reached out to Western Digital PR to find out the latest and was told: "At this time, there is no additional information. We are diligently working on a solution."

The problem is NOT the hard drives, the problem is the software associated with these drive. If your Mac uses an internal Western Digital drive as a boot drive, this problem does not affect you.


Dan Foster sent this in:
"Just came across an awesome trick by accident (but I'm fresh to Premiere, so if this is old news I'm sorry).  If you hold your arrow pointer over the little gray box just to the right of the track visibility button or the solo button and scroll up or down with the scroll wheel on your mouse it expands or shrinks your track height for that track only.  I know you can click and drag the track height, but this trick seems a little less tedious." 


The Active Alliance, which tracks storage, posted an interesting blog from Dave Thomson on his experiences selling LTO drives and issues using the LTFS file system with Mac systems. This short article is worth reading:

Paul Nixon mentions that when he upgraded to Mavericks (OS X 10.9) it moved Final Cut Pro X, Compressor, and Motion into a new folder called "Final Cut."  So, if you are upgrading to Mavericks and wondering where your files went, look there.

Also, if you use Compressor droplets, when the  application moves to this new folder all existing droplets will probably break. Open Compressor and resave your presets to recreate the droplets so they work with Compressor in the new location.

In the "Cool New Feature" category, Huibert van Egmond writes: "I have made a instructional film on how to edit with a MIDI controller in FCP X. It works really well and it sped up my editing quite a lot. Maybe if you think it's worth it you can place the link on your blog."

Huibert, here you go: 

Generic newsletter bullet Video compression is one of our top three most popular webinar topics ever. So last week we offered a compression webinar comparing Apple Compressor, Adobe Media Encoder, and Sorenson Squeeze. Tips, tricks and techniques to help you learn how each works, plus a detailed section at the start on video compression basics.

The webinar is now posted to our store, and available to all subscribers in our video library.

Click here to become a subscriber.
Click here to download this from our store.

(By the way, we are taking a short break from our weekly webinars. They will resume in December.) 


Buzz newsletter bullet This week on The Buzz Philip Hodgetts and I got into an extended discussion on coping with change in our industry. As Philip says, "We want our software to improve, but not to change."

So, what's the role of change, and how do we cope with it when upgrading our software often feels like a "bet the ranch" decision?

It is a fascinating discussion of "bigger questions" that I think you'll enjoy.

Listen to Philip's interview here.

Listen to the entire show here.

We are now offering complete text transcripts for each Digital Production Buzz episodes, courtesy of  Read the transcript for this show here.


Generic newsletter bullet I have something for just about everyone this week - three different articles and a new video! 
  • If you own a Mac, you should read the article on turning off ownership preferences for all your data drives.  
  • If you browse the web, you should read about encoding WebM videos for Firefox.  
  • If you use Final Cut Pro X, you should read a very useful set of techniques for working with connected storylines.  
  • And if you want to better understand video compression, watch our video that explains the basics.  

And, as always, I've updated our Top 3 lists.  Enjoy! 

Explaining What You Need to Know  
Many editors find video compression hard to understand. For last week's webinar comparing compression software from Sorenson Media, Adobe, and Apple, I started the webinar with a review of video compression basics.

If you are trying to make sense of what you need to know to make your images look great, this twelve-minute illustrated slide show can help.

Watch the video here.

(Note, this video won't play in Firefox - for the reasons you'll read in the next article.)

Compressing WebM Video Takes FOREVER!      
Last week, I found I needed to create a variety of WebM files to support Firefox browsers.  What a mess!!!

This article describes what WebM is, why it can be necessary, and provides some optimized settings that may allow you to compress WebM movies in less time than it takes paint to dry. Maybe.

Read the article here. (This video won't play in Firefox.)

Merge and Cut Connected Storylines     
Connected storylines are necessary in Final Cut Pro X to add transitions to clips, as well as provide more trimming and placement options.

However, they present their own set of problems when you want to combine or cut sections of a storyline as part of an edit.

Then.... last week, I finally figured out how to merge and cut storylines. So, I wrote it up in this article.  

If you trim clips in FCP X, you need to read this article.

Turn Off Drive Ownership      
So, you just bought a new hard drive, plugged it in and nothing works right. It may not be a hardware problem - it may be a small setting on your hard drive that controls ownership.

This article explains what ownership is, how to check if your drives are OK, and what you need to do to fix it.

This isn't hard. But it isn't obvious, either.

Learn Apple Compressor 4 
Ultimately, all our projects end up on the web. Which means that if we don't know how to compress our video to make it look good, all our work during production and post is wasted.

In this in-depth video training, Larry Jordan shows you how to make the most of Apple Compressor 4.

Whether you are a new or experienced editor, this training will help you make your media look and sound great!

Here are the top three articles, webinars, and audio interviews for the past seven days.


Yay, a NEW #1! We expanded this to the Top 4 to add more variety:

For an index of all our articles, visit here.



This list is based on the webinars watched most often by our monthly subscribers. For a list of all our webinars, visit here.


Digital Production Buzz Audio Interviews 

For a list of all the audio interviews we've conducted on The Buzz, visit here. 


This is the training the pros turn to when they want to learn Final Cut Pro X.

From set-up to editing to effects to export, everything you need to know to master this new software is contained in this training.


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Save time, save money, save your sanity. Watch this training and learn how it's supposed to work.

We are committed to providing the highest quality training at the lowest possible price and distributing it as widely as possible.

From subscriptions to individual downloads to free techniques and articles -- we've got your back.  And there's lots more to come.


Larry Jordan
Larry Jordan & Associates

P.S. I always love hearing from you. Feel free to write.