Category Archives: Editing

Use the free Microsoft Research Image Composite Editor to create panorama photos

Microsoft Research makes their Image Composite Editor available for free. Use the ICE to create high quality panorama photos by stitching together many photos.

This photo was created out of 34 photos taken on a 12 megapixel point n shoot camera – the end result, after overlaps and cropping, is a 78 megapixel image.

This is a size reduced 1920 pixel wide version of the original. On the original, I can just about zoom in to cars on the bridge. This photo was taken from the site of the Astoria tower, Astoria, Oregon, overlooking the Columbia River where it joins the Pacific Ocean.


Widely reported problems with Apple Final Cut Pro X 10.2 update

Apple just introduced updates to Final Cut Pro X,  Compressor and Motion. Many who have installed the updates report that Final Cut Pro X is no longer working with AVCHD files created by at least some Panasonic cameras, and reports that some Red Epic files are not working either. There are some indications this impacts 1080p 30 fps files only; however, that is probably the most popular video format for AVCHD!

Read through the Apple Support Community discussion thread for more info:

after 10.2 update- imported clips displaying black | Apple Support Communities.

I updated a Macbook Pro to OS X 10.10.3, and installed the FCPX, Compressor and Motion updates. My 1080p60 and 3840p30 (Ultra HD) clips, all shot on a Lumix GH-4 (Panasonic camera) are all working okay, so far. I have not tested 1080p30 files.


Lenovo security fault called reckless

Lenovo pre-installed malware on millions of computers that broke https security for months – and then initially denied the problem. This vulnerability means systems used to log in to financial, work, online sales and other sites were compromised.

Installing Superfish is one of the most irresponsible mistakes an established tech company has ever made. Reckless, careless, and appalling don’t even come close to covering it.

via Lenovo Superfish scandal: Why it’s one of the worst consumer computing screw-ups ever.

  • If you are using a Lenovo computer purchased last year, you need check for the presence of Superfish by going to this page and reading the result.
  • Lenovo’s manual spyware removal instructions.
  • As of this morning, Microsoft has updated Windows Defender to remove the Superfish digital certificate that causes the security failure in Lenovo computers. Update Windows Defender and scan your system.
  • CHANGE  YOUR PASSWORDS at secure web sites. You need to especially change your passwords at critical information web sites such as your financial accounts, health care records accounts, and online purchasing accounts as your account information had the potential of being compromised.

Lenovo puts malware on own systems that breaks HTTPS security

Read for the details: Lenovo Is Breaking HTTPS Security on its Recent Laptops | Electronic Frontier Foundation.

This is a very serious security vulnerability and Lenovo still has no fix to ensure that https is secure.

This is of interest to photographers and video shooters as the Lenovo Y50 notebook provides a 4K display screen, making it a popular choice among the photography and video community.

Visual Storytelling in a 360 Virtual Reality World

First there were stage-based plays, then 2D films, then 3D films, and now, with Occulus Rift type viewers, 3D immersive virtual reality worlds that are 360 degrees in scope.  What does that mean for story telling?

The Language of Visual Storytelling in 360 Virtual Reality. | Knowledge Base and stereoscopic 3D Blog.

Good points on 360 degree lighting, sound, etc. Read the entire piece – really an eye opener as to where immersive, full surround 360 degree motion story telling in 3D may be headed.

World’s First 4K 3D Civil War Battle videos

I realized last night that the 4K 3D videos I posted on Youtube are the world’s first ever Civil War era battle re-enactments posted online in 4K 3D format. Kind of cool.

The videos were created using dual Lumix GH-2 cameras, each shooting a 1920×1080/30p video stream.

These were edited and mastered in Sony Vegas Pro and output as full width side by side videos – meaning 3840 pixels wide by 1080 high.

This is then uploaded to Youtube with several “tags” set to tell Youtube how to encode the video properly. When viewed on Youtube, two new viewing resolutions appear: 1440 HD and 2160 4K. Even if you only have a typical 2K monitor, either of the higher resolutions looks much, much cleaner in 3D!

ImportantThis remains experimental! I can only view the videos in correct format using Firefox. Chrome tells me I do not have HTML5 compliant hardware. I could play all but one video on an LG 3D TV using the LG Youtube app. However, when I played the videos on the same TV using a Sony BluRay player’s Youtube app, the videos have the wrong aspect ratio (3840×1080 instead of 1920×1080). A separate video I mastered as 3840×2160 side-by-side 3D did better, but means I have to double the file size (data rate) to get the same image quality.

We can argue about whether or not paired 2K streams are really 4K video. In one sense, they are half vertical resolution 4K. But when 4K is used to stream 3D, we end up with half size images on the left and right anyway. The effect is therefore the same in terms of what gets delivered.

Additionally, Digital IMAX theaters, as of now, are thought of as 4K theaters but they use dual 2K projectors (they will be upgrading the theaters eventually). Digital IMAX provides a more immersive and louder sound experience, but the Digital IMAX screens are just a little bigger than regular movie screens – and not like the 70 to 90 foot tall original IMAX screens.

In other words, dual paired 2K streams used for 4K 3D end up being roughly equivalent to having been shot in 4K on both cameras due to how the 3D left/right pair has to split the 4K image anyway.

Once again: Magix Movie Edit Pro NOT RECOMMENDED for 3D video editing

This is a repeat to what I wrote last fall. I made the mistake of trying to use this crappy software again to edit a 3D video. WHOPPER mistake.  Found more bugs in it again. Another night wasted with this terrible software.

MAGIX is software that one really wants to like – but I must again STRONGLY RECOMMEND AGAINST PURCHASING AND USING MAGIX MOVIE EDIT PRO FOR 3D EDITING. 

Once again: Magix Movie Edit Pro 2013 NOT RECOMMENDED for 3D video editing |

I will be deleting Magix Movie Edit Pro from my computer after this – likely the first time I have ever deleted a large software package due to so many defects. It is astounding the company took a good product (version 17) and ruined it, and has failed to fix serious defects as we come up on 2 years since its release. I am not the only one who reported the defects to them.

I once lost 40 hours of work due to Magix Movie Edit Pro defects; at this point, Magix is history. I will never use it again.

How to create 4K 3D Videos for Youtube

Using Sony Vegas Pro (and presumably newer version of Sony Movie Studio)

  • I used the MainConcept AVC/AAC (*.mp4, *.avc) codec
  • I selected Custom Frame size and set width to 3840 and height to 1080.
  • I set maximum bps to 40,000,000
  • I set average bps to 32,000,000
  • On the Project tab, I set Stereoscopic 3D mode to “Side by side (full)”
  • Upload the file to Youtube
  • Add the following as individual “tags” in the Youtube “tags” section:

After Youtube recodes the video, the viewer will include 1440 HD and 2160 4K viewing options. Select your 3D viewing options and select 2160 4K – note, you need a fast Internet connection. This produces a much higher quality 3D image than the normal Youtube 3D configuration.


Using Magix Movie Edit Pro (version 13 – should work on 14 too)

  • Compress the output to an mp4 video as 3840×2160 (not 1080). This creates a vertically stretched “half frame” on the left and right – however, since its 1920 wide, we end up retaining all of the original 1920×1080 on each stream.
  • Set to side by side, half frame (didn’t work for me when I set to full frame side by side)
  • Select a high bit rate such as 40 Mbps or faster
  • Upload to Youtube with the tag yt3d:aspect=15.99:9
  • In Advanced settings, select “This video is already 3D, and then select “Side by side: Left video on left side”.

After encoding, this shows up as a 4k 2160 3D video and plays as you would expect, but at a much higher image quality.

Corel Video Studio Pro X7

Corel’s latest video editing software is now at version X7.

I did some quick tests to check on just a few features.

Plus side: It renders output video files super fast compared to many alternative editors. On my quad core Windows 7 system, rendering seems to be roughly “real time”. One minute of video is rendered in about one minute. That’s fast.

The program also features a 2k to 4k conversion feature. This definitely works but I am unable to evaluate the result as I do not have any 4k displays to watch it on. However, I did upload a test clip to Youtube and the result certainly looks good on my 2K TV (which means its downsized back down of course).

Editing is easy enough that I figured out most everything I wanted to do without resorting to help/documentation.

The package also includes a nifty Screen Capture utility for recording video clips from things you are doing on screen. This is great for creating tutorials. This utility worked great for me in my tests and would be worth buying the whole suite just for screen capture!

For editing 2D video, its quite respectable and priced inexpensively.

Minus side: Its 3D capabilities are very limited. It can import side-by-side and MVC video files, but it has no 3D video clip adjustment features. If you cannot fix parallax in post, its not terribly useful, unfortunately. And that’s too bad, because it also rendered my 3D MVC video clips faster than I expected.

Quick verdict: For 2D video editing, Corel Video Studio Pro X7 is an extremely fast editor – fast to edit, fast to preview and fast to render.  If your work is 2D oriented, this product should be on your list of editors to look at. But for 3D, its lacking in critical features such that its really not suitable for 3D work.

The product can be purchased and downloaded directly from Amazon:

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