Posted by: davesnewadventure | February 24, 2011

New Intro to Sundrenched: A Bicycle Expedition Through South America

I’m currently testing out the latest incarnations of Avisynth (Wine 1.3), VirtualDub (Wine 1.3), Avidemux (Linux native), and ffmpeg on Linux (Ubuntu 10.10) as a production tool for my documentary, and I have to say, it’s SO MUCH BETTER THAN Adobe Premier Pro!!! I have all my options open, it uses so much less memory, it’s CLEANER, AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, IT DOESN’T CRASH OR CHOKE! Which is what I had problems with the last time with Premier. AND IT’S OPEN SOURCE!

Once you get down to your 2nd or third script, interestingly, it becomes intuitive, and MUCH easier to do video edits, cleanup, and nonlinear editing than in Premier. I’ve come to the conclusion, after messing with Premier and having so many problems with it, that in the time it takes to learn to use Premier well, I’d say I could learn to use Avisynth, ffmpeg, and all it’s features in HALF that time. That’s how disenchanted I am with Premier. I’m not about becoming a God in software. I’m about putting out good content, and messing with software doesn’t contribute to putting out good content.

By the way, this is about my Bicycle Expedition across South America, all 3768 miles in one year, through the backwood wilds of the Amazon. Because this test is successful, and the quality is excellent, I’ll be sticking with this setup for all my video production work. Also, if you’re interested in learning more about my adventures and my recently published book, Jackfruit, come visit

For the Avisynth folks, or for those who are new to it, and want to get an idea of how I did this, here’s the code, with some comments. The best part about doing Nonlinear Video Editing in Avisynth is how it self documents itself. Literally, I can leave the code for a year or two, come back, re read the code, and figure out how I did it! I can’t do that in Premier, or any of the other NLE’s out there.

Here’s the code. As you can see, it’s pretty much self explanatory, which is the beauty of AviSynth.

# Nonlinear edit of the new introduction
# Do sound mixing in Avidemux with an mp3, do video clip info in VirtualDub.
# Use VirtualDub to output the video in raw avi.
# Date Feb 22, 2011, 12:59AM
# Test of AviSynth's Nonlinear Editing capabilities
# There are about 42 avi video clips that have to be processed.
# Do final encoding at commandline with ffmpeg and lib x.264, level 18 for high # quality
# Music is "The Way Home", by Michiru Oshima
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_001.avi"­).FadeIn(30) + \ # Put a fade into the start
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_002.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_003.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_006.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_004.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_005.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_008.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_009.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_007.avi"­).FadeOut(30) + \ # Put a fade out to show transition to South America
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_011.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_012.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_010.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_013.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_014.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_015.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_016.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_017.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_018.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_019.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_020.avi"­).Trim(120,300) + \ #Shorten this clip
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_021.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_022.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_023.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_024.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_025.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_026.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_027.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_028.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_035.avi"­).Trim(0,150) + \ # Shorten this clip
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_043.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_029.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_030.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_031.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_032.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_039.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_040.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_041.avi"­) + \
AVISource("/media/scratch/intro_042.avi"­).FadeOut(30) # Final fade out

Crop(0,0,0,-6).BicubicResize(640,480) # cut off the video garbage at the bottom, since this is Hi8 video capture, and then resize it back to 640X480
Sharpen(-.5) # Sharpen the details
Info() # Show full video information when processing in Virtual Dub, comment out in final video output.


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