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Printing to Video in Final Cut Pro

written by: Shane Burley•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 7/1/2011

Printing to video is an easy exporting option, as long as you have the correct equipment.

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    Getting it on Tape

    Depending on what you intend to do with your digital video project, once it is edited you are going to need to export it in different ways. Though our modern technology network often demands that we do this for online distribution or DVD authoring, there are other ways to go about it. If you need to print to tape there is also a method for that.

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    The Deck

    To do this you first need to make sure that you have an appropriate tape deck plugged into your editing computer’s capture card to begin with. You likely do if you are doing a whole lot of video capture, but if you don’t you will likely need to. Otherwise you can burn a DVD and then record the DVD onto a tape from a DVD player to a VCR

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    When you are ready to export you go to File and Print to Video. A window will come up and give you some options, like how long you want Bars and Tone to be at the beginning and how much black you want afterwards before your video plays. Conventionally it is five seconds of each. In the bottom left of this window is a box titled Automatically Start Recording. Make sure this is checked because it will automatically set your tape deck to begin recording once the program begins. Once it is ready the screen will go back and you will have one last queue asking you if you want to begin the video playback.

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    Essentially what Final Cut Pro does for this is plays the video full screen while the tape records it. There can be a number of problems with this, especially if the video is of high quality and the computer is running slow. Close down all other programs while you do this because you do not want to take away from the primary function. If you are having trouble with dropped frames while it is playing back try opening the RT menu and lowering the Playback Quality. If it persists you can set the program to not abort playback even if there is dropped frames, but then you will have interference on the tape.

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    Technology Working in Harmony

    This is a fairly easy process, but requires a number of pieces of technology to work together to get it right. Make sure that you also have an external television monitor plugged in for optimum playback and that all your devices are attached to your computer correctly.