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HeatherHaze

Working with Video

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I'm finding working with video in Cakewalk to be a frustrating experience.  I'm hoping others can give me some useful insight into things I'm missing here.  My main issues are as follows:

1. Cakewalk can't import a .mov file.  I'm scoring to picture and have received a .mov file.  Cakewalk doesn't like it.  This is a common format that many people use to deliver video.  This file works fine being dragged and dropped into Cubase.  Cakewalk ignores the video but accepts the audio.

2. I must therefore convert the video to .mp4.  But when I drop an .mp4 into Cakewalk, it's stuck in time.  It's glued to 00:00:00 and can't be moved.  This is impractical as I need to move it forward a few measures for lead-in.  The video should be able to be relocated on the timeline.

3. If I convert the video to .avi it could work.  But the .avi file is 44Gb(!) and takes a while to render.  This is obviously an inefficient and impractical solution.  

There must be a better way?  Anybody?  I hate working in other DAWs, but it seems like in this case...Cubase might be the way to go.  Cakewalk just doesn't seem well-designed for scoring to picture.  I sincerely hope some of my wonderful Cakewalk cohorts can prove me wrong and show me the light.  I'd much rather work in Cakewalk!

 

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Posted (edited)

The video feature is just an add on that was not fully featured and is very limiting. it is not a video editor, just a simple player. 

You are best to make a working copy of the movie as a MP4 to score music to, but do any movie editing in a proper editor like Vegas. 

Load your movie into Vegas and create a project file. Move the movie on the time line and save as an MP4. Now use that in Cakewalk to score. When you 're done,  export the music and drop that back the the original project in Vegas. Make sure to have a clear count in you can use to sync up. 

Edited by John Vere

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2 minutes ago, John Vere said:

The video feature is just a add on that was not fully features and is limiting. 

You are best to make a working copy of the movie as a MP4 to score music to, but do any movie editing in a proper editor like Vegas. 

LOad your movie into Vegas and create a project file. Move the movie on the time line and save as an MP4. Now use that in Cakewalk to score. When your done export the music and drop that back the the original project in Vegas. Make sure to have a clear count in you can use to sync up. 

Thanks for the reply.  I already tried this as well.  But the problem is, even with the extra lead-in space burned into the .mp4 I can't align it to the start of the measures.  It's just frustrating.  I'm now rerendering the file as an .avi which is a royal pain but the only way I can find to make this work.  Ugh. 

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Posted (edited)

It is true, Cakewalk is not great for working with video. * You cannot import .mov files,  nor can you move the video clips within the timeline, as you're discovered. That's the way it is 😞

It's more to be used as just a preview of the finished, edited video clip in order to then work on your music/score/voiceover tracks.

 

*I see that this is not actually correct. Sorry for the misinformation. But I haven't had success with it myself. In general my experience with scoring/sound design/voice-over with CW and video has been historically frustrated. It really feels like a bit of a tease! So I prefer other, more adept, platforms to work in.

 

Edited by winkpain
corected misinformation

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I tried rendering the video file down to an AVI but Vegas Pro kept crashing (don't get me started).   So I finally threw my hands up and went back to Cubase.  Ugh. 

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I've only scored one 30 minute film in Cakewalk, but I can confirm all your problems and frustrations. I tried converting to a couple of different video formats (in Vegas) and ended up creating an .avi file. This worked, but of course it had to be converted back to a .mov at the end. 

I think any DAW worth the name has to be able to do film scoring. But having a video track that won't accept modern formats doesn't make sense to me.

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I just did like this with mp4:

- dragged into video editor like PowerDirector or whatever

- offset file on timeline, in my case just 8s in.

- produce a new mp4 - that will have black frames at start of video.

- this does not even render file and reduce quality if using smart render(called SRT or something)

- import that into Cakewalk

 

So whatever used to convert mov file to mp4 probably can do this too.

Video runs really well in Cakewalk like this, and very low on resources compared to Cubase for one.

New video engine in Cubase is the worst crap I ever used for video.

Then using scene markers locked in time really good.

 

If wanting second video, like you get an updated video that change your project since scenes were cut differently- I use this

https://vidplayvst.com/downloads.htm

So you can use original video in that, and drag new in regular place and compare where it differs.

Vidplayvst allow to offset by itself with a midi C note somewhere where to start.

I used Vidplayvst instead in Cubase while using that, much lower on resources(but no thumbnails).

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There is an Always import Broadcast waves to their exact time stamp. It could be something like that. I don’t know it is effects video time stamps or not see if it is checked in Preference. I always use mpeg2 in cakewalk. For video stuff. 
 

Max Arwood

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Posted (edited)
On 5/18/2020 at 11:21 PM, Larry Jones said:

I've only scored one 30 minute film in Cakewalk, but I can confirm all your problems and frustrations. I tried converting to a couple of different video formats (in Vegas) and ended up creating an .avi file. This worked, but of course it had to be converted back to a .mov at the end. 

I think any DAW worth the name has to be able to do film scoring. But having a video track that won't accept modern formats doesn't make sense to me.

I can also confirm this. Since .mov files are really an apple extension not all windows programs accept it. I suspect because Cubase is cross platform they somehow made it work on Windows computers. .mov is also a common Cannon extension. I found it frustrating early on in trying to find something that would import it from my cameras and also allow me to mix the audio in a DAW. Probably the most advanced video platform in a DAW besides Cubase for windows is Mixcraft. It has decent basic editing features but again no .mov. files accepted.  Vegas has been hit or miss for me. Glitchy to say the least. The advanced version of Vegas  accepts .mov. I only have the  Vegas Movie Maker version 16. The other Magix program Movie Edit Pro Plus at 69.95 accepts .mov files and is a great editing program. This is what I ended up buying to edit .mov files although it isn't a DAW .

I hate to say it, but Cubase looks better if you already have that program. Not sure how much video editing you have done, but computer video spec will come into play here in a big way. If under spec. the process won't be smooth.

Edited by Starise
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Some software seem not to accept mov from the context it's apple quicktime or similar. So not even looking what video format it contains.

I got that from Corel products NLE's Pinnacle and Movie Studio or something.

I get mov-files from canons cameras that contain h264 and bring into PowerDirector and make a mp4 instead and bring to Cakewalk. No issues. And no need to do avi. Resource friendly and everything, hardly notice I do video either(1080p).

 

But if content is quicktime in mov files - another story maybe.

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Actually I meant to say when I used to do short videos I used mpeg2 in Cakewalk.  Larger stuff I do in Vegas Video. Sometimes I do the Audio in Cakewalk if it is complex audio them import stems into Vegas.  I have looked at DaVinci resolve (free version).  It has most of the basic stuff most people would need.

 

Max Arwood

 

 

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Quicktime video definitely works in Cakewalk using the Media Foundation engine in Windows 10. See image where I am running a QT video in the latest release.
Keep in mind that the MOV extension is just a container for a video format so just looking at the file extension doesn't mean anything.

If stock Windows can play the video then Cakewalk, should be able to load it since we rely on Media Foundation for all our video support. For it to be compatible with Windows the video must be encoded in a compatible format such as MPEG4 or you must have the appropriate codec installed. Generally a thumb rule is if the Windows video player can play it then it should be ok to import.

I loaded up several MOV files on my computer and they played fine here.

 

 

QTVideo.png

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On 5/16/2020 at 11:40 PM, HeatherHaze said:

There must be a better way?

The most agile video format I found to work into Cakewalk is mp4 (H.264) in SD resolution. To convert your file you can download Freemake Vídeo Converter (freeware).

Try it and tell me. Good luck::.

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I wonder if it's down to Windows 10 no longer supporting mpeg2 (vs Windows 7) due to licensing costs?

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6 hours ago, Noel Borthwick said:

Quicktime video definitely works in Cakewalk using the Media Foundation engine in Windows 10. See image where I am running a QT video in the latest release.
Keep in mind that the MOV extension is just a container for a video format so just looking at the file extension doesn't mean anything.

If stock Windows can play the video then Cakewalk, should be able to load it since we rely on Media Foundation for all our video support. For it to be compatible with Windows the video must be encoded in a compatible format such as MPEG4 or you must have the appropriate codec installed. Generally a thumb rule is if the Windows video player can play it then it should be ok to import.

I loaded up several MOV files on my computer and they played fine here.

 

Thanks for the reply Noel (and everyone).  The problem isn't only getting the movie to play.  Handbrake makes converting almost anything to .mp4 very easy.  The problem is I can't move the video in time once it's in Cakewalk.  It's just bewildering that this isn't possible.  Most of the video I've been given to score needs some lead-in time.  But for this one function, I'd happily use Cakewalk in scoring anything.  But as it stands, it's not a practical solution.  It's impractical to convert files to AVI to score in Cakewalk.  It's a minor but important design flaw that I hope Bandlab will rectify.  If I didn't have to leave Cakewalk, I never would! 

Others have mentioned the idea of adding some seconds to the video in another app and then using that in Cakewalk.  I've tried this too.  But then we have issues syncing the video perfectly to the timecode.  It's so easy to do by moving the video to, say, the start of the fifth measure.  It's an incredible oversight that this isn't possible in Cakewalk.

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Try setting the below in aud.ini:

 

[Video] 
VideoEngine=0

Or change to 1 if already at 0.

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12 hours ago, Kevin Perry said:

Try setting the below in aud.ini:

[Video] 
VideoEngine=0

Or change to 1 if already at 0.

Thanks for the suggestion.  I've tried this and have had this setting active for some time.  It doesn't seem to help, the video is still using the Media Foundation engine.  

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