If you ever record dual-system audio or multiple camera angles without synchronized timecode, you’ll wonder how you ever survived without PluralEyes added to your editing software. Users of Premiere Pro CS5 for Mac who are aware of PluralEyes for other editing programs will be happy to know that a version of PluralEyes is now available for their preferred app too. This article will go over PluralEyes’ general features and then illustrate the specific workflow used with Premiere Pro CS5 compared to the way it works with other video editing software.
PluralEyes in a nutshell
An old adage says that a picture is worth a thousand words. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then I suppose we could calculate the value of a video clip by multiplying the duration (in seconds) * the framerate * 1000. The following video (courtesy of Singular Software) has a duration of 2:18 (two minutes and 18 seconds… or 138 seconds). So if we multiply the duration (138 seconds) * the framerate (29.97 per second) * 1000, we can conclude that this video is worth 4,135,860 words. I am only playing with numbers because I know that PluralEyes’ creator -Bruce Sharpe of Singular Software- is a revered mathematician. So don’t pay attention to my math and enjoy the video, courtesy of Singular Software:
Wow! I don’t know about you, but I think that this demonstration is certainly worth at least 4,135,860 words! But wait a minute! This video demonstrates how PluralEyes works with Final Cut Pro, and the way it works with Premiere Pro CS5 is a little different. Here’s another video (also courtesy of Singular Software) which shows how it works specifically with Premiere Pro CS5 on Windows. This one has a duration of 2:17 (137 seconds), so this one is only worth 4,105,890 words:
Two important observations about the above video: 1) As you may have noticed, for Premiere Pro CS5, PluralEyes isn’t really a plugin. However, the steps are few and it is really easy to operate even though it’s not really a plugin. 2) As you may have noticed, that video wasn’t done on a Mac. No problem: I’ll do one for you right now on my MacBook Pro 13″ 2.26 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo with 4GB. (I haven’t yet upgraded to a Thunderbolt model.) This video is HD 720p, so feel free to click the “HD” button and then the tiny button on the lower right to see it full screen. On the other hand, if you reading this on an Apple iOS or other mobile device, it will detect that and show the best size for it. (Unfortunately, it will not have lip sync when played on Android phones for the moment.)
This video was shot with the 720p camcorder built into the Samsung Galaxy S “Vibrant” phone. The audio was recorded using a Heil PR40 microphone onto a Sony PCM-M10 recorder (to be reviewed very soon). No lights, camera operators, or even hair stylists were used for this shoot.
Okay, my video had a duration of 2:49 and the framerate is 29.97p, so it should be worth 3,161,000 words…
Sidebar: Regarding 48 KHz audio for video
As you may know, the standard for digital audio for video is normally 48 KHz, although there are some consumer cameras that (unfortunately) offer the option of a lower setting. Ever since I have known this is the standard for delivery on professional videotape formats, DVD and Blu-ray, I always record 48 KHz when it’s for video. And if an audio track from an audio CD (44.1 KHz) is to be used with a video, I always convert before bringing it into the editing program. In fact, this is practically a dogma among FCP users. Although I have heard rumors that Premiere Pro CS5 can accept other sampling rates with no problem for a 48 KHz timeline and convert on the fly, I would rather prepare the audio at 48 KHz so Premiere Pro CS5 will have to juggle one less thing simultaneously… and in the case of original recordings, to avoid extra sampling of the audio.
The decision about PluralEyes
If you ever record dual-system audio or multiple camera angles without synchronized timecode, (in my opinion) the decision isn’t whether to purchase PluralEyes or not. It should be obvious that you should buy it. The question is: which version. Singular Software offers a version for:
- Adobe’s Premiere Pro (Mac and Windows are separate licenses)
- Apple’s Final Cut Pro
- Avid Media Composer (Mac and Windows are separate licenses)
- Sony’s Vegas Pro
The price is the same US$149 for any of them. There is no crossgrade plan or discount if you later decide to change video editing program. Many people I know are currently on pins and needles trying to make a decision about switching from one video editing program to another, and this situation is further fueled by the quite believable rumor that Final Cut Pro is about to be updated soon. So choose carefully which version of PluralEyes you purchase, so you’ll (hopefully) only have to pay the US$149 once! Visit SingularSoftware.com for more info.
Translation and Localization
At publication time, PluralEyes is only available in English. I have proposed translating it and localizing it for Latin America and Spain, and Singular Software may have that done in the future.
Reviews of over versions of PluralEyes
You may see the following other reviews of PluralEyes done by colleagues at ProVideo Coalition magazine:
- PluralEyes for Apple Final Cut Pro, reviewed by Scott Simmons
- Plural Eyes for Avid Media Composer, reviewed by Scott Simmons
Listen to our interview with Bruce Sharpe of Singular Software
Listen to TecnoTur episode 5 to hear our interview with Bruce Sharp of Singular Software.
Read Allan T©pper’s latest book
Read Allan T©pper’s latest book, Unleash GoogleVoice’s hidden power. More info about both the print version and the new ebook version at books.AllanTepper.com. The ebook version is DRM-free and now available from the Amazon Kindle store, Apple iBooks store, Barnes & Noble NOOKbook store, and other popular ebook sources.
Allan T©pper’s consulting, articles, seminars, and audio programs
Contact Allan T©pper for consulting, or find a full listing of his articles and upcoming seminars and webinars at AllanTepper.com. Listen to his TecnoTur program, which is now available both in Castilian and in English, free of charge. Search for TecnoTur in iTunes or visit TecnoTur.us for more information.
Disclosure, to comply with the FTC’s rules
None of the manufacturers listed in this article is paying Allan T©pper or TecnoTur LLC specifically to write this article. Some of the manufacturers listed above have contracted T©pper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Adobe, Singular Software, and Telestream provided NFR software for this review, and Sony sent the audio recorder.