Learning AVID Media Composer

addik

Well-Known Member
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Hey, all!

I've been editing on Final Cut Pro X and Adobe Premiere Pro these past few years but since I heard that USC uses AVID, I've been looking to learn the software right before the start of classes just to get acquainted with it (and to get over the frustration of learning something new haha). I'm thinking maybe some people are on the same boat, so maybe we can have a thread on resources we can use to learn AVID?

Anyway, I do have a question regarding purchasing AVID since they offer a free tier. Is it worth downloading the free tier first before purchasing a perpetual license later? Or are there bigger differences between the two that the AVID website isn't really telling us about (Site is here: Media Composer - Video Editing Apps - Comparison - Avid)

Also, to those who used to be on the same boat, how was it transitioning to AVID from your previous editing software?
 
Hey, all!

I've been editing on Final Cut Pro X and Adobe Premiere Pro these past few years but since I heard that USC uses AVID, I've been looking to learn the software right before the start of classes just to get acquainted with it (and to get over the frustration of learning something new haha). I'm thinking maybe some people are on the same boat, so maybe we can have a thread on resources we can use to learn AVID?

Anyway, I do have a question regarding purchasing AVID since they offer a free tier. Is it worth downloading the free tier first before purchasing a perpetual license later? Or are there bigger differences between the two that the AVID website isn't really telling us about (Site is here: Media Composer - Video Editing Apps - Comparison - Avid)

Also, to those who used to be on the same boat, how was it transitioning to AVID from your previous editing software?
I used to work for Avid in the late 90s and I used to teach it. I use it daily as an editor and now producer since 2001 if anyone has any questions.

Unfortunately I don't know too much about the different licensing options as I've never had to buy my own.
 
Thanks, Chris!

I guess I'll just go ahead and download AVID once my time starts to free up (I'm just finishing up with the last projects I have to submit, plus I've been taking care of other documents that I might need to present to the embassy for my student visa so once that's all over I'll have a lot of free time), I might have some questions when I finally start getting in to it!
 
I’m not sure what the different tiers are but I’m gonna hold off on downloading AVID at the moment because I’m sure USC has a code to help students download it. I took a tour of the facilities yesterday and was shocked to hear that they rarely use Premiere. I didn’t realize AVID was industry standard outside of television and news.
I have a friend who works in news and lied about knowing AVID during his interview (lol) and had to quickly learn it. He previously knew how to use Premiere. I’ll ask him what resources he used and post them here soon!
 
Avid is without a doubt the industry standard. Fcp made some inroads until Apple borked it and you hear of some jobs on premiere.... But they're all very small and low paying.

Every job I've done in the past 19 years has been Avid. It's the industry standard mainly because of the superior editing tools (frame f ing), but most importantly the unity shared media and shared project system.

For example I'm an editor and producer for a huge Discovery show and we have at least 12 editors, 12+ producers, 6+ assistants, 6+ APs all accessing the same media, projects, and edits at the same time.

That's probably the main reason it's the industry standard.
 
Every job I've done in the past 19 years has been Avid.
Well this isn't true. In 2006 I did the American Idol Ford music videos in FCP which was a pain but I got it done. I think that this was because Apple was first in supporting some of the new HD formats affordably. But then Apple completely borked FCP and most people stopped using it.
 
I’ll ask him what resources he used and post them here soon!
ok I texted him. He just said he mostly learned on the job, so he was less helpful than I thought he’d be. He said he may have watched a start up setting tutorial. The main transitional challenges are keyboard shortcuts and the exporting process, according to him. Sorry I couldn’t get him to send me a link or something.
 
The basic editing really hasn't changed in 25 years. Heck even the title tool is the same. The media it can play and framerates are the main difference.
 
So just FYI right now Media Composer is NOT COMPATIBLE with the newest Mac OS (Catalina), which is strange considering SCA works on Macs. So either hold off on paying/downloading MC or downgrade to the previous Mac OS.

AVID says they're working on a fix, but it's been a few months and the furthest they've gotten is a beta version that has restored some functionality.
 
So just FYI right now Media Composer is NOT COMPATIBLE with the newest Mac OS (Catalina), which is strange considering SCA works on Macs. So either hold off on paying/downloading MC or downgrade to the previous Mac OS.

AVID says they're working on a fix, but it's been a few months and the furthest they've gotten is a beta version that has restored some functionality.
Ha. The version of media Composer we run at work is version 7 or something like that. At least 5 years old and we're even still using some original towers which are 10 years old.

No one wants to upgrade when it's all working. Ha
 
So just FYI right now Media Composer is NOT COMPATIBLE with the newest Mac OS (Catalina), which is strange considering SCA works on Macs. So either hold off on paying/downloading MC or downgrade to the previous Mac OS.

AVID says they're working on a fix, but it's been a few months and the furthest they've gotten is a beta version that has restored some functionality.

Huh, that's weird. My main editing system now is in Catalina (because something happened and I was forced to upgrade to Catalina to fix it) so that sucks. I do have a laptop I haven't updated though but it's literally just a MacBook Air.

Ha. The version of media Composer we run at work is version 7 or something like that. At least 5 years old and we're even still using some original towers which are 10 years old.

No one wants to upgrade when it's all working. Ha

Haha reminds me of the time when I was still working as a translator and in subtitling, IT decided to upgrade my software (and ONLY mine) and it literally caused a whole bunch of issues with work for everyone (since I did mostly quality checking), so their solution was to rollback my software. If you're working with a team, someone else being ahead in updates could bork your workflow (not to mention, potential glitches in the new versions that weren't present before)
 
Yes the main problem is we're never really in between shows or seasons. There's always something being worked on with a deadline so it's not really safe to upgrade.

It still crashes occasionally but the devil you know...
 
On a side note, does anyone know if USC is serious about enforcing its Mac OS rule? I have a solid Windows laptop that I just picked up two years ago, will they require that I purchase a Mac laptop for my classes, or are they just playing tough on the website?
 
On a side note, does anyone know if USC is serious about enforcing its Mac OS rule? I have a solid Windows laptop that I just picked up two years ago, will they require that I purchase a Mac laptop for my classes, or are they just playing tough on the website?

I'm not entirely sure, but based on the AMA thread, USC might not be as stringent on the laptop requirements as they seem in their website:

I'll fill in for sharkb8 on this one (Sounds like I'm a semester ahead of him). There's a lot of stress on the website and in the onboarding documents about getting the laptop and getting the right configurations for the laptop but I have yet to hear about or encounter a class that requires it. I believe the increased price at the USC store is due to the added Applecare warranty but I could be wrong. The main purpose of the laptop beyond normal word processing and access to the internet is going to be for the editing software (more on that later). If you think you're 100% positive that you'll do most of your editing off campus then you can go ahead and get that exact laptop. Otherwise, the requirements aren't so stringent as they make it seem. With that said, if you go through the bookstore you can probably very easily appeal financial aid for an increase in aid to match the cost of the laptop.

A word on the editing labs: the editing labs on campus are pretty nice and they usually don't close until midnight. On the one hand that means they aren't 24 hours, but on the other hand you'll almost always have a computer for editing available to you at all times. They are nice and quiet, there are lockers you can purchase to store your drives and quite frankly it's a good place to meet people too. Even if you have a laptop and prefer to edit from your laptop, you will inevitably be in the Lab several times during the semester.

I'm not aware of any need for Creative Cloud, but all software is purchased at the student's expense. With that said, you can appeal to financial aid to account for the expense of that software, and the appeal will be granted to you - just like any other expense that you incur over the course of a class.

And finally, USC is an AVID school. All of the editing workstations use AVID, all of the editing professors pretty much only use AVID, the school retains the services of certified AVID instructors and in many cases your films will be screened directly off of the AVID timeline instead of from an export.


I do think the problem is going to be collaborating with others. Most likely, our classmates are going to be using Macs, as recommended by the faculty, so there might be some compatibility issues when working with someone else. (Maybe @Chris W can give an insight on whether or not different OSes can create compatibility issues when it comes to collaboration?
 
I'm not entirely sure, but based on the AMA thread, USC might not be as stringent on the laptop requirements as they seem in their website:




I do think the problem is going to be collaborating with others. Most likely, our classmates are going to be using Macs, as recommended by the faculty, so there might be some compatibility issues when working with someone else. (Maybe @Chris W can give an insight on whether or not different OSes can create compatibility issues when it comes to collaboration?

Thank you very much for this, this is super helpful. I suppose if I plan on remotely editing with anyone for either their own project or they remotely edit for my own project, the OS differences could be an issue. If I stick to the labs, I should be okay. All good to know.
 
not different OSes can create compatibility issues when it comes to collaboration?
When using Avid? Maybe. But as long as the versions are the same the bins should be compatible. There may be some glitches though. Most companies choose one or the other and don't mix. I've only been to one place (and it was 10 years ago) that used PC avids
 
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