Want to log on set on an iOS device or in a browser and then have all the keywords imported into Final Cut Pro X ready to edit? The Lumberjack System is a clever and quick way of first logging and then getting all that data into FCPX.
An application that we have been keeping an eye on for a while as it seems it could be the answer to a couple of our logging problems.
Philip Hodgetts and Gregory Clarke have just made the Lumberjack System available to everybody after an extensive beta period. You can't buy the apps, but there are two rental plans, $9.99 per month with a yearly subscription or $25 per month with no commitment.
So what does the Lumberjack System do? Good job we found the new demo video on YouTube!
The real-time logging in Lumberjack opens up a whole range of possibilities, ranging from speeding up episodic production to sports editing. It doesn't stop there either and we are sure that there will be many ways Lumberjack gets used that Philip & Greg didn't envisage.
"This is changing the way content providers interact with post, enabling them to deliver media that is pre-logged with relevant and useable keywords and synced to all clips via time of day. Editors can now accomplish almost instantaneous string-outs that are keyword driven and shorten their delivery time significantly," says Philip Hodgetts, President of Lumberjack System. "It is evident that much of the post production budget for these types of shows has been used up in the hours and hours of organizing, logging and prepping footage for the first string-outs. We are confident that producers will immediately see the usefulness of Lumberjack System and its ability to help them cut down those labor-intensive hours and deliver a product that is on budget and on time."
- Logging is captured at the source with push button ease on any web-enabled device (whether live via internet, or off-line for updating whenever the internet becomes available).
- Keywords can be logged consistently over the course of the shoot and identified as potential story lines in post.
- The logger can update the keyword lists while logging and can even back-time logging so that the timing is consistent with the story as it occurred on the set.
- As data is transferred to the FCP X workflow with 100% integrity paper logging is no longer needed. No chance of misinterpretation and no retyping. The editor is guaranteed to see the logs, as opposed to what happens way too often in pre-Lumberjack productions.
- After the shoot, the XML from Final Cut Pro X is round-tripped via the Lumberyard app and returned to FCP X fully logged.
- String-outs for first cuts or approvals can be created in a matter of 2-3 seconds based on Person, Activity or Other keywords.
One downside, each import of the FCPXML will create a new event in Final Cut Pro X. Which means you can't add extra data to an existing event. We really hope that Apple allow the updating of events via FCPXML from external applications, this would allow the real time logging and editing of an event to happen simultaneously. Then Lumberjack used in conjunction with Softron's MovieRecorder could make a very cost effective rival to EVS's IP Director system for sports & reality highlights editing.
We think that if somebody can be present at a shoot, or on the end of a satellite feed, this is an excellent way of logging the material with keywords for FCPX. If the work is put in before the editing has started on a project, then huge time savings could be achieved. We have been in many edits where the first half day or day has been spent logging and organising the footage. Using Lumberjack, this might become a thing of the past and we can get on straight away with what we like doing most, editing.