Multicam editor mode...

I am dreaming of a "multicam edit mode" to be used when several cams are recording a full performance from different angles or with different zooms.

Upon editing with that mode, the overall length of the performance is kept unchanged, the director just defines transition from one cam to the other (one track to the other).

That mode would have following specificities:

a) entire tracks can be calibrated against all/selected other ones (white balance, luma, contrast...) automatically or/and manually,
b) the tracks would be sync'd upon the audio tracks automatically or/and manually, detecting audio edges.
c) director selects one audio track as master.
d) director defines only the transitions from one track to another one, without need to cut and copy to another track.
e) cuts/copies (if any) would affect all tracks simultaneously, keeping the overall sync of the performance.

Would'nt that be something interesting for one of the later versions of KDEnlive?

Today this kind of cutting requires a lot of manual effort, fiddling with milliseconds...


Yes, I am aware of some of this functionality in Premiere, which is handy (although mistiming the cut cam make for a lot of weird splits in the timeline). Also, I believe you can only do straight cuts with Premiere, at least the last time I checked.

However, I am not sure why you think this requires a lot of effort now. It is actually relatively simple, the only issue is lining up the clips (which you would have to do in premiere anyway, down to the millisecond to start, just in that case you line up virtual clips, which are timelines). Once that is done, you just cut on the places you want cuts, and add transitions. Since the clips can be dragged to extend the length, I use that to cover the end of the transition.

Now, as for your ideas:

a. Calibration: I would never want to automatically calibrate this, as it can lead to some really bad white balancing and saturation issues, esp. when the camera pans to pick up something and hits the sunlight or a parcan - a computer would think that is the max level, and set accordingly, whereas you would know that is a blip. This gets even more complicated when you have gelled fixtures for a concert, or a play, as when I record my lighting designs I need to be very careful with the camera settings with all the tungsten fixtures.

b. Audio Sync: Detecting by "edges" won't really work. If the cameras are turned on at different points, that will be the edge. If it is a song, and the cameras are next to audience members, that can screw up the perceived edge, and make it far more difficult. I have found manual sync the only way to do it with the exactness required.

c. Master Audio - You can do that now. Right click the clip, and extract audio. Drop that in to an audio only track, and lock it. That is your master track. Then, line up the other clips, and mute the sound on them.

d. Copying: If all the tracks are in the timeline above (or below) the audio track, and are in line, there is no need to copy. Cut yes (you always have to be able to do that), but not copy. Yes, you might need to delete sections of tracks higher in the timeline, but that is why I rough cut first (basic cut areas), delete the other tracks, and extend the clips the way you want them. This will also ensure the full transition duration is covered.

e. Sync: Since all the clips are in the timeline, and you are razoring them (hmm, maybe I should check and see if a razor all clips tool is listed as an enhancement), they are all already synced, and affects everything.

I know that you are basically trying to replicate a switching environment, but in nle, it is not as easy as having the 4 digibeta decks lined up with the clapper and then doing the basic fades and dumping it out to the new deck. We have much more power with nle, and while this takes a little more time in the beginning, it creates some awesome outcomes.

Hopefully that made a little sense. Yes, you can edit relatively fast with nle, but it will take you a little time to set up (which frankly, it used to take as much time frame by framing it to the clapper hit to setup anyway, before the producer walked in).