Teaching Examples

Cool tools for multimedia production
June 1, 2007, 1:18 pm
Filed under: multimedia, tools

Maybe you already read Multimediashooter.com, maybe you don’t, but you should read this post. It is a roundup of useful links shared by experts at the NPPA meetup.

I’d like to highlight these three:

The Levelator: Runs on Windows or Mac OS X. Adjusts the audio levels within your audio file. “Not a compressor, normalizer or limiter, although it contains all three. It’s much more than those tools, and it’s much simpler to use…. Drag-and-drop any WAV or AIFF file onto The Leveler’s application window, and a few moments later you’ll find a new version which just sounds better.” Cost: FREE.

VisualHub: I discovered this just last week when my colleague Lauren and I were playing with her shiny new tapeless video cameras (Sony DCR-SR300). The little buggers save in MPEG2 on a 40 GB hard drive. They come with proprietary Sony software (of course), but it won’t run on a Mac — and that’s what we had. VisualHub to the rescue. We were watching a lovely MPEG4 in no time. Mac only. Cost: $23.32 U.S.

Switch (Windows or Mac): I’ve mentioned this here before, but I just used it for the umpteenth time last night — it’s like having a Swiss Army Knife on your laptop. It converts a long list of audio file formats to all the formats you really need. I ripped a CD into iTunes and then converted one M4P file into a more user-friendly MP3. Cost: FREE. (Be careful not to install the “Plus” version if you want the free one.)

Extra video goodness (not in Richard’s post): Add more formats to your QuickTime player with Perian (free; requires Mac OS X 10.4.7 or later). Play Windows Media crap — er, files — in your QuickTime player with Flip4Mac (free). For Windows users (and Mac and Linux too!), there’s the VLC media player (free). VLC will play WMV, WMA and FLV files. The sole remaining thorn in my side is the Real format — and if only NPR would ditch that garbage, I would never have to think about it again!

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2 Comments so far
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Flip4Mac is so much more powerful and sophisticated than visual h….for a paid version of conversion software, F4M is the best. And if you really want pro level encoding, Episode can’t be beat.

Comment by Antonio

Thanks for the links, Antonio. I think you’re a bit biased, but no problem (smile) — it’s always good to check out new tools.

Comment by Mindy McAdams

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