iMovie as a Gateway Drug

The new iMovie seems to represent a different paradigm for consumer editing — faster, less precise, designed for a tapeless workflow. It was discussed in some depth on last week’s MacBreak Weekly podcast and the consensus there was that it might be very useful for quickly throwing together a super-rough cut. It has one very important secret weapon: “Export to Final Cut Pro.” If you’re missing something, and iMovie ’08 is missing a lot of things, then you get yourself Final Cut Express or Final Cut Studio and move your project straight into it, courtesy of XML and Quicktime.

The program seems to be extremely easy to learn. It doesn’t offer a lot of options — it just does the right thing. For example, if it sees a mounted digital video source it just starts importing video from it, no questions asked. We may see producers or directors creating rough “idea” cuts in iMovie, and then handing the thing off to real editors who can make it work. (But there are problems, too. Scott Simmons has posted some interesting observations on his site.)

Rhetorical question: Is there an upgrade path from Pinnacle Studio to Media Composer? I don’t know for sure, but I’d have to wager that the answer is no. You can move a project from Studio to Pinnacle’s Liquid line. But that just begs the question. Doesn’t Avid want to see young editors moving all the way up to Media Composer?

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Explore posts in the same categories: Consumer Editing, User Interface, Workflow

2 Comments on “iMovie as a Gateway Drug”

  1. Alex Says:

    It may be that the current version of iMovie was created as an adjunct to Final Cut Server client software. If reasearchers, producers and journalists can take logged clips on the server and play with them to the extent that iMovie allows, it might be useful for briefing editors and others.

  2. Steve Says:

    Avid now seems to be explicitly saying that they hope Pinnacle Studio users who outgrow the system will migrate to Liquid.

    “when Pinnacle Studio users are ready to migrate to a more powerful and professional editing solution, Avid Liquid is the ideal choice for them”

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