Newbies: How to make your first AMV

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Newbies: How to make your first AMV

Postby jbone » Mon Aug 12, 2002 11:12 am

NOTE: This guide is severely outdated and has been unstickied. Please consult the guides section of the site for guides on the amv creation process.

http://www.animemusicvideos.org/guides/

-Corran


-------------------------------



This question gets asked several times a day, so I think I'll try to create a definitive "what to do" guide.

First, you need source material. Lots of people start with downloaded clips/fansubs. These will let you make something, but your finished video won't look very good. Rather, you should use DVD source for the best results. (There is an entire Guides section. Read ErMaC & AbsoluteDestiny's Friendly AMV Guides to learn how to work with your video streams. Don't ask here, as it's already all answered for you in the guide.)

Second, just pick an idea and run with it. Something sound good to you? try it. Work on it for hours or for days. Teach yourself how to do cool things with the software. Your video will most likely suck, but almost everyone's first videos suck. It may take you three or four tries to actually be able to make anything good, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't just throw together something that "sounds cool" - you need that experience in order to learn what to do (or what not to do). Don't worry about people not liking it, 'cause you don't even have to show it to anyone. Just don't post on the message boards that you're new and you want someone's help to start - dozens of such requests are made a week, and nobody's going to hold your hand and/or give you a good idea that you couldn't've easily come up with by yourself.

Third, don't ask stupid questions. Think things through, don't waste peoples' time asking things which could easily be answered by reading the manual/reading the guides/reading past message board posts/using common sense.

Fourth, don't ask people to give you software. Some programs are available for free; some are cheap; others are expen sive. Nobody here will give you pirated software, and many people here will flame you if you start to brag about how you used pirated software.

In case this hasn't already been mentioned....

What NOT to do if you want a good AMV:

Do NOT use a windows media format (usually .wmv or .asf)
Do NOT use Realplayer (usually something like .rm -rf /luser)


Some good video formats are:

DivX 3.11alpha
XviD
MPEG
And just for the hell of it I'll give QuickTime 6's new MPEG-4 a chance.


Some good audio formats:
(There isnt much choice here anyway)
MP3
OGG


In case you are lucky enough to have a clean computer, and you didn't install any codec packs or divx 4/5. Then there is good news, you can now watch those divx4/5 and xvid encoded videos without installing the codecs (YAY)

A good set of codecs, and the only ones you should need for that matter are:

DivX 3.11alpha - if you know how to encode this one stands above 4/5.
ffdshow - directshow filters which allow you to watch divx3, divx4, divx5, xvid, and mpeg4v3 (the microsoft version).
Ogg Vorbis DirectShow Filter Collection - There are two, you'll need both.

Note: The Ogg filters are only needed if you are making and watching .ogm (ogg movies). Ogg movies using xvid for video and ogg audio for the audio.
Mac Users: I'm sure there is something out there that works....

Getting Sources:

If you have the DVDs, then rip them to either DivX 3.11alpha or XviD. My advice if you are new to ripping the source from the dvd is to use GordianKnot and encode to DivX 3.11alpha.

Downloads:
The codecs and filters are available on doom9.net/org in the download section. Obviously the filters will not be in the same place as the codecs and vise versa, and in order to see the ogg stuff you will need to click 'show me more' near filters.
The DVD backup and ripping utils are also there, along with the GordianKnot program and update. And the guides are there as well, hooah.[/u]

[MOD359: Edited 12/19/02]
"If someone feels the need to 'express' himself or herself with a huge graphical 'singature' that has nothing to do with anything, that person should reevaluate his or her reasons for needing said form of expression, possibly with the help of a licensed mental health practitioner."
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Postby jbone » Mon Aug 12, 2002 1:03 pm

Addendum: You should use DVD source or footage you capture yourself. I forgot to mention capturing video 'cause I don't use it myself. :-)
"If someone feels the need to 'express' himself or herself with a huge graphical 'singature' that has nothing to do with anything, that person should reevaluate his or her reasons for needing said form of expression, possibly with the help of a licensed mental health practitioner."
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Postby SpPANDA » Mon Aug 12, 2002 2:27 pm

[shrugs]

questions have never really bothered me. i'm always up to answering basic stuff. i'll even lend a hand to help new people get off to the right start. ^_^
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Postby jbone » Mon Aug 12, 2002 2:47 pm

It's good to help new people, but a lot of the same questions get asked over and over... and many of these questions are very, very simple.

Anyhow, now that this thread's sticky, and because this is the first forum in which most newbies will probably look, hopefully the typical "hi, how do I make my first AMV" questions won't be as frequent.
"If someone feels the need to 'express' himself or herself with a huge graphical 'singature' that has nothing to do with anything, that person should reevaluate his or her reasons for needing said form of expression, possibly with the help of a licensed mental health practitioner."
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Postby DiemondDagger » Mon Aug 12, 2002 3:39 pm

Now, we wait and see if any N00bs will fall for our trap.
*waits patiently*

- As a member of a-m-v.org I have come to notice that Newbies quite often...aren't very smart. And usually dont read other threads before posting.
But we will see not all newbies are the same.
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Postby afleetinghope » Mon Aug 12, 2002 5:01 pm

Jbone, if you get some of the new digisubs they're close to being, if not actually, as good as DVD footage. *drools at X TV*
Video of the moment - Nightowl - Love is Flowers
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Postby jbone » Mon Aug 12, 2002 5:48 pm

They may look the same to the untrained human eye, but in reality they lack vital visual data, and subsequent recompressions made from that source won't look quite as good.

Remember, DivX removes a ton of "invisible" data which encoders rely on for accurately compressing the video.
"If someone feels the need to 'express' himself or herself with a huge graphical 'singature' that has nothing to do with anything, that person should reevaluate his or her reasons for needing said form of expression, possibly with the help of a licensed mental health practitioner."
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Postby afleetinghope » Mon Aug 12, 2002 6:17 pm

I'm quite happy with my DivX rips even if they're not perfect, hell most commerical DVDs you all love so much aren't much better (Weiss Kreuz, X Movie), so why waste your money on overpriced crap?
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Postby Chaos Angel » Mon Aug 12, 2002 8:32 pm

DiemondDagger wrote:- As a member of a-m-v.org I have come to notice that Newbies quite often...aren't very smart. And usually dont read other threads before posting.
But we will see not all newbies are the same.


-No, they aren't. When I first joined, I read the guides a couple different times first thing (actually, this was before I even actually joined) because they looked like they would be helpful. I'm glad I did, too. They are a great thing, and I wish more people would read them.

JBone, you never mentioned video editting software, which is another frequently asked question. Besides Windows Movie Maker, there is also the much-better Premiere, and Photoshop and After Effects for special touches. Trial versions can be downloaded from the Adobe website, if you cannot currently afford the real versions. You have to register with the Adobe site to get them, but it is free of charge.

Just putting in my two cents.
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Postby SarahtheBoring » Mon Aug 12, 2002 8:58 pm

afleetinghope wrote:I'm quite happy with my DivX rips even if they're not perfect, hell most commerical DVDs you all love so much aren't much better (Weiss Kreuz, X Movie), so why waste your money on overpriced crap?


Because that encourages the companies to release more product overseas (i.e. here), thereby encouraging the industry we claim to support.

That's why.
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Postby ErMaC » Tue Aug 13, 2002 12:14 am

I agree with jBone - heck I was the one who encoded those X TV digisubs for AnimeInc and I wouldn't use them as source. ^_^ Dealing with subtitles it only half the problem. The other problem is dealing with the crummy source. To the untrained eye it'll look OK, but just try outputting it to a TV, or looking at it as raw pre-filtered data in VirtualDub or Premiere 5.1 - it looks terrible.

More things to mention to newbies:

If you plan on posting a message, post it in the right forum. Questions about software go in the Video Software Help forum, questions about general video editing go in the Video Help forum, non-technical AMV-related questions can go in General AMV..
But most importantly, when you finish your video, DO NOT post about it anywhere other than "AMV Announcements." Very few things piss people off more than newbies posting "Check out my new vid!" in the General AMV forum.

To reiterate what jBone said - do not take what you may think is the path of least resistance. Asking a question in a forum that has either already been asked or is answered in one of the guide or the manual to the program will do nothing but piss off the longtime visitors of the forum and cause them not to help you.
One thing I've been advocating but has not yet been implemented (perhaps it's fallen on deaf ears, I don't know) is to not allow people to post for the first 3 days they join the site, because that forces them to search the forums to see if their question has been answered already.

Once the old forums are accessible via read-only access (which Phade promises to be the case sometime in the future) you will have over a years worth of questions that have been asked to search through, but there's this very handy search function which should make your life much easier.

Chances are your question may already have been asked even since the time the new boards came up.

Also - do not ask about video hosting. This site does not allow you to upload your videos to it. You must provide your own hosting. Please do not post in the boards asking if people will host your videos, rather I would look through posts to see if people have OFFERED to host videos. Do a search and then ask those people if the offers are still good.

Finally, please please PLEASE read the guides. They are there to help you. And above all if you think you need to know something do not be afraid to look it up yourself. Pestering people on the message boards with constant questions, even if they may be ones that haven't been answered yet, will make you come off like the kid in school who was always asking the teachers what to do next. Try to figure things out on your own - some things in AMV creation is best learned by doing.
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Some help...

Postby OmniStrata » Tue Aug 13, 2002 10:23 pm

Ok, for some help from I, the dance maniac who can't play DDR, ironic ain't it?

This will help noobs who like upbeat music.

Questions need to be answered before you start...

#1. Can you listen to the song you chose for 2+ weeks STRAIGHT!? If not, don't consider making amvs, you can thank me for it later.

#2. Do you know the program you are using? Even if it's pirated, even THOSE software come with read me files. I found Adobe Premiere somewhat challenging, but once you learn how to cut/paste the "timelines", you're set to make master vids. (awesome vids that use no effects can win in conventions too you know)

#3. Story? Do you want to tell a story with your vid? If you're new, (which you are since you're reading this thread) you've chosen the "rougher" route because most songs don't follow an easily set "story" that you can trace. So if you want to try something simpler, just go for the straight lyric match. People will notice it more and if it's good, then it's good. If you want to tell a story, do it in time with the music. Each line of lyric sung, do a cut to the footage. It's "almost" like you're going by the lyric, but you're not.

#4. Effects... This has been a HUGE issue concerning a "war" between certain people. Some love them: ErMaC, Fremmerlid sisters, myself. Some don't: Zontique. Don't worry about your audience in decisions such as these. I've done videos both with and without effects and either type is loved with the right editing. I was thinking of inserting linkst to my vids here but that's not polite I guess... ^_^ If you go for effects, you have a DAUNTING task ahead of you. People "who are good" can recognize the fantastic "custom fx" and separate them from the "cheezy, skilless" canned fx. The task is to make fx in the video that look tricky and wows the audience. One vid: Odorikuruu, you can't miss it on this site. :lol:

#5. Footage type... Downloaded mpegs/divx files versus the DVD ROM rips. Obviously the latter is a must. However, if you're limited like me, don't let the "download footage sucks" syndrome affect you. I've turned up some super sexy footage using digital downloaded fansubs before. The only limit is that lip synch is out the window. :( "How do I know if my digisubbed footage is good enough?" Filesize of the file is quite accurate. The first Love Hina digisubs I got were between 40-70. Translation: shitty. The subs I got for Hanaukyo Maids (10min. per episode) were in the 80s! That's some wicked compression. The best lookin' digisubs I got would be Read or Die and/or Onegai Teacher. It's about 210+ megs for a 27 mins. Episode. Then again, if you have a DVD ROM, use ur $$$ and buy some anime! ^_^

#6. The core of your video, the EDITING!
Yes, the song and anime and quality amount to :P bullshit if you're editing sucks. No matter how "technically" perfect your video is, I'll vouch a LOT to insure that it's the "feel" of the video that makes it a keeper on people's hard drives. Perfect example: MexicanJunior. Time and again he puts out spectacular editing at the expense of low quality footage/sound. My recommendation: if you don't cut scenes

a: on beat with the drum/bass/instrument
b: after every 4+ seconds

you're gonna have a sleepy audience. Editing should be done in "heaps"; several cuts based on the music.

#7. THE GUIDES! The last thing that caught me as an editor were the oh-so-friendly guides provided by Phade and ErMaC and others. I use them specifically for exportation.

#8. Your questions to others here at the org. I'm sure "theme" questions may pop up: "How do I make this work with this?" or "will this song/anime work?" Go to the video suggestions forum. On rare occasions, you might be able to ask how to make an "effect" in Premiere. But there's an 8/10 chance you'll just get flamed.

#9. The style: don't ask for too much help. You won't gain a "style" of amv editing that you'll be recognizable for. There are "influences" from other amvs though. "Odorikuruu" was my ultimate driving force for amvs thus far. Many others looked to the "older" generation amv makers with Duane Johnson, another whose name escapes my memory, and the legend: Kevin Caldwell. But there's many more. This database is VAST. Check them out!

#10. Stop reading and get going! Anime music video editing shouldn't be done half-assed. "Do, or do not, there is no try..." Finish the video with what is needed. Don't blitz for an awesome intro and then fall asleep for the middle/ending.


notes and warnings: Premiere will not run too well on low end systems. Look in my a-m-v.org profile for what my system looks like. I rank it quite high for editing. My previous system was a 300MHz with 64M SDRAM! AND I STILL EDITED!!!

Nobody was shot, maimed, or otherwise injured during the making of this post, however, my fingers are somewhat hurting from all this typing. I suggest looking at videos from some of the people I suggested here, I like them, and you might too! ^_^
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"That is a mistake many of my enemies make. They think before they act. I act before I think!" - Vortigern from Merlin ('98)
"I AM REBORN!" - Dark Schneider Bastard!! OAV
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Postby OmniStrata » Tue Aug 13, 2002 10:29 pm

DOH!

Looking back, there's a typo, the Hanaukyo Maids eps I have are around 12 mins each and round in at like 120+ Megs per ep...

DOH!

:oops:
"Strength lies in action. Let the weak react to me..." - Kamahl, Pit Fighter from Magic: the Gathering
"That is a mistake many of my enemies make. They think before they act. I act before I think!" - Vortigern from Merlin ('98)
"I AM REBORN!" - Dark Schneider Bastard!! OAV
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Postby CaTaClYsM » Wed Aug 14, 2002 10:41 am

Few questions
should a person to at least make one vid per anime despite how many there are?

If it is a super rare anime (single to double didgits.) can they make as many vids to it as they want since there are so few (of course they will have to stop when it gets popular.)?
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Postby mckeed » Wed Aug 14, 2002 11:32 am

you cna do whatever....some ppl make like 20 eva vids.....there are plenty of people who only make dbz/gt vids as well. Do whatever you feel like.....Do whatever idea pops into your head....don't let you choice of vid be dependant on how many times it has been used. For instance Scott Metlzer's DBZ vid "this is your life" won at AWA despite it being a DBZ vid which normally had a very high predjudice. Do a video that you want to do....Don't just go out and do a video b/c the anime hasn't been used much. Personally i try to do a video to every series that I have in my collection on DVD just for the variety, but I have a second Ah! my Goddess vid in the works even though i allready did one.....sometimes ideas just hit you and scream make me. Follow those instincts not the....well i could use this anime and this music.
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