Monthly Archives: January 2008

OS X-like Dock Menu on the Web

This is just a quick note, Mac-loving web designers might find interesting. I just stumbled upon a really neat menu design at this website (somebody at that IP address found my blog, and that’s how I found them). It’s all in Dutch, but to see what I am talking about, you don’t need to know Dutch. Simply point your mouse at the symbols on the bottom of the screen. Pretty cool, huh?

Camcorder Audio Settings for Editing in Final Cut

As discussed in the Section “Choosing Audio File Sample Rate and Bit Depth” on Page 212 in the Final Cut Express User Manual, Consumer mini-DV camcorders can record four channels of audio using 32 kHz/12-bit audio settings for sample rate and bit depth. After reading this, I checked my Panasonic PV-GS500 and sure enough, this is the default setting on that camcorder as well, i.e., all my previous footing was recorded with that setting.

According to the FCE user manual this setting is not recommended for most productions. It is better to use the standard 48 kHz/16-bit setting commonly used by DV, HDV, and DVD.

2008-07-13 Update: Putting it to use
It’s been long since I posted this, but two weeks ago I finally had a chance to make use of this tip. We went for our annual summer vacation, and I remembered to set my camcorder to 16 bit audio setting prior to recording. Since most of the recoding was city and landscapes it hardly makes a difference.

Now that I am importing into FCE for the first time, I had a hard time finding the right Easy Setup. Since I recoded in 16:9 I had to choose an anamorphic setting. I read that some time ago and don’t find it too intuitive. One has to know that anamorphic and widescreen are synonymous. But the problem came with the audio sample rate. You can either choose “DV anamorphic 32kHz” or “DV anamorphic”.

Here, the 32 KHz is commonly paired with the 12 bit audio, and 16 bit audio is sampled at 48 kHz. But where was the 48 kHz. Turns out, that the “DV anamorphic” is the 48 kHz setting. because this is considered the standard, the sample rate is not specifically mentioned. Again, not very intuitive.

Disable Image Resize Dialog in MS-Outlook

If you select an image file and choose “Send To — Mail Recipient” in the context menu, the Send Pictures via E-mail dialog appears to ask you if you want to resize the image. To disable the dialog and to directly open the email client with the image attachment, follow the instructions below. This tip was hard to find with Google, so I pasted it here verbatim: Continue reading

Better Sound with SnapzProX

When recording a screen movie, e.g., a software tutorial, with SnapzProX, you can choose to record a voice-over with either the built-in or an external microphone. The problem is that the sound quality is not very satisfying given that it is a straight recording. It would be better if you could filter that audio recording in real-time. The solution comes through Soundflower and Audio Hijack Pro. Continue reading

Home Recording Without Background Noise

I recently started getting into home-recording, primarily to do voice-overs on videos or to record screen tutorials for my parents. Of course I don’t have a quiet sound studio at my disposal, so my study has to do. When I turn off the radiator and close the door, it is actually pretty quiet except for the fan on my iMac. That plus background recording noise won’t go away and is quite distracting on plain voice recordings. Some searching online pointed me in the direction of using a noise gate filter: Continue reading

Little Known facts About On-Ramps

The final straight section of on-ramps, just where or before where you merge with traffic on the highway is also known as the acceleration lane. You can read more about it here at the Federal Highway Administration Website. Continue reading

Saving on Washer Fluid

It’s winter again, we’ve had out first two snow storms, so it’s the time of year when I use plenty of washer fluid. To my dismay, prices have gone up quite a bit recently. Last year I was able to buy a gallon for about 95 cents, this year, the cheapest I can find is $1.4 and many other places over $2.. Not much you might say, but when there’s a lot of salt and dirt on the road, I can run through a whole gallon is less than two weeks. That adds up quickly. What to do? Continue reading

A new Look, A new Plug-in

It was time to change the face of my blog again, therefore, a new theme — Fast Track — by the same author as the first theme I used. And another plug-in too. In addition to adding the post ratings, I thought it would be nice to just get a count on the post views as well. Fortunately, there’s a handy plug-in for this as well: WP-PostViews. Note that in order to avoid counting your own access to the page, you must be logged-in because logged in user access is not counted.

Delete From iPhoto Album, iTunes Playlist, iView Database

With so many documents organized in data bases these days, primarily music in iTunes, and photos in iPhoto and iView MediaPro, I find it more and more important to clean my databases of junk, music I never listen to, photos I never look at, if you have used any of these programs you likely know what I mean. How to clean it up? Continue reading

Just Added: Point Rating Plug-in

It is a welcome (indirect) feedback, that I recently see more and more traffic on my site, especially, as a consequence of Google searches. This tells me that I must be doing something right. By writing about problems that people care to find out about. This is great and exactly what made me start this blog in the first place. Continue reading