Final Cut Pro (R) 3: The Complete Reference

Author: Richard H., Sr. Schrand
List Price: $59.99
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ISBN: 0072195177
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne Media (22 March, 2002)
Edition: Paperback
Sales Rank: 517,953
Average Customer Rating: 3 out of 5

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Customer Reviews

Rating: 1 out of 5
This book is a criminal act.
If the author of this book was a doctor, he would probably be in prison.
What can you say about someone that writes twice in the same page that FCP 3's minimum RAM requirements are 196 MB? That amount of RAM is not only inaccurate (256 MB is the correct one) but also physically imposible to install in a computer.

Or, for another example, what should be done to an author that suggests that a sequence based on a multi-layered Photoshop files should be exported as a video file before placing it on your main sequence? Any intermediate user knows that the best way is to place that Photoshop-based sequence in the timeline as a nested sequence! At least, that would be the orthodox way of doing that.

He then uses "DV" as a generic term for digital video, when DV (with capital letters) only applies to the different forms of the DV25 standard.
Half of the book is a superficial description of things that are self-explanatory, and when further explanation is really needed, he doesn't explain anything. As a Final Cut instructor, I know that you do that when you don't know what to say. When that happens to me, I try to go deeper into that particular issue. I don't see how could that happen in a book.

The mistakes are so many that one should blame the author's editor as well.

A lot of the book seems written for Final Cut 2, and he didn't update it when FCP 3 came out. That's the case with video effects, for example. Not to mention that he describes the color corrector filter in the chapter on video capture!
Compositing is barely discussed at all (in a book about one of the most compositing-oriented NLEs on the market!) - FCP's motion settings are treated as if they were mere video filters.
A lot of the information could actually be correct, but after reading so many inaccurate things my trust has weakened a lot.

Rating: 1 out of 5
There are much better FCP books
I have gone through three different FCP books and this one is by far the worst. I normally would not bother to write a bad review but this book got me steamed.
1. Filled with ancedotes of Schrand's life in television; who gives a *ats *ss! Then to top it off, his bad humor (not funny).
2. Some unclear writing. I had to read some of his sentences twice to understand what he means and I am someone who is familiar with the program.
3. When he needs to explain some esoteric functions and the concepts behind them he doesn't, ie. Compressor/Limiter, what does Threshold and Ratio settings really mean and how would you use them on an audio file?
4. I think many pages he just substitued 3 for 2, ( and missed a few at that) ie. "A new feature to Final Cut Pro 3 is the ability to trade audio mixes via OMF audio format."
It was new to 2.
If you have never edited before on any system this book is fine, but if you have any experience with nle editing or FCP this book will annoy.

Speaking of editing his book editor should share the blame for the low quality of this book. At reference book prices this should be reference book quality.

Rating: 5 out of 5
Great reference! :-)
The problem with most reference material comes from its inability to explain complex ideas and techniques clearly and concisely. For the newbie, this book is a great way to learn about FCP3. For the FCP3 veteran, it's a wonderful reference for learning new features of this program.

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