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Thursday, 17 March 2011 23:45

“Get” Footage Indexed for Final Cut Pro

Written by  David Hurd
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MarchTestDriveSFW“Get” is a phonetic search tool from AV3 Software that will index all your footage on a hard drive and allow you to search for specific words or phrases from within the Get interface. Properly used, this software should be well worth the investment to anyone needing to find a clip in a hurry or for an editor with a ton of clips to sort through.

Get works in three easy steps: Index, Search and Export. You’ll first need to open Apple Final Cut Pro (FCP), so that Get can export the clips that you select directly into your FCP project. Start by indexing your clips, so that Get knows where to look for them. Get will only search the “Watched” folders and the FCP projects that you index, so it’s important to add all of the folders that you’ll ever want to search. Add a Watch folder by clicking on the + sign in the lower left-hand corner of Get, and select the folder that you want to add. If you want to add more than one folder at a time, you can also do a drag and drop directly from the Finder window in your Mac over to the left side of the Get interface.

Usually, you’ll want to add the location of your capture scratch folders (or whatever folders contain your raw footage) and your FCP projects, so that Get can find them for you later. This indexing process takes about a minute per hour of footage, which is a tiny fraction of the time you’ll save by using this software. Now, you’re ready to do a Search.

Searching is as easy as typing a word into the “Speech Contains” area. The results will show up as either media files or clips in the search window. If you double-click on one of these items, it will open in a preview window. Sometimes multiple results will show up for one clip because that clip has several instances of the search word. If you want to do a quick preview of all of the listed results for a clip, just select the first one on the list in the “Preview” window, hit the spacebar to start playback, and use the down arrow to jump to the next search result. This is a very quick way to find which instance of the clip you’re looking for.

The thing to remember about the Get Search window is that the “Score” might need to be adjusted up or down. If it’s too high, you’ll get no results, if it’s too low you’ll get results that aren’t what you were looking for.

Since Get is listening to the audio of the clips, clean audio is important for high accuracy. When I set the Score to 90 percent on a clip that had been shot on a treadmill, the loud background noise obscured the words I was looking for. When I lowered the Score to 50 percent, it found what I was looking for. And if you don’t know the proper spelling of a word, you can try spelling it out phonetically. For example, “Al-Qaeda” can be found in Get by using the search term “al kay duh.” Since Get uses a phonetic search engine, it can usually find many words and phrases this way.

After you’ve found what you’re looking for, just export it into your FCP project. Once found, Get can send the search results back to Final Cut Pro in a variety of ways. When you have a clip that you want to use selected in the “Preview” area, just click at the bottom-right corner of the Preview window to export it to the FCP project that you have open. The pop-up dialogue box will let you name it before Get transfers your clip into FCP. For marking the in and out points in Get, use the same I and O keys that you would use in FCP.

If you have selected a clip in Get that was previously used in another FCP project, you can save the time of having to find and mark the sound bite again. Just hit the “Export Markers” button, and Get will add markers to your clip and retain your old in and out points when exported to FCP.

Get has so many useful application possibilities. For instance, if you’re a news editor who needs an Obama healthcare clip, Get can find it in any of the raw footage that you have indexed, or in any of the old FCP projects that used it. That’s got to be helpful when you’re under deadline. Another person needing this software is an editor who has 300 hours of footage for a long-form project like a documentary or an independent film. Just look in the script, search a word, and let Get find the clip. It’s that easy.

MSRP: $499, in North American English, United Kingdom English or Latin American Spanish.

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