Arranging for Client Review

Throughout the post-production process, it’s critical to get ongoing feedback about the program you’re working on. Whether you’re getting your feedback from friends and family, clients, or test audiences, it’s important to be able to provide a screening copy (or “screener”) of your program in a format that’s convenient for viewing.

Once upon a time, videocassettes were the most common way of providing a copy of your program. With the demise of consumer tape formats, tape output (to more expensive formats) is now ordinarily reserved for the final master. Instead, it’s common to provide your program as a QuickTime movie, DVD, or Blu-ray disc. The appropriate format for your purpose depends on the level of quality necessary for a useful review and the preference of the reviewer.

Providing a Window Burn for Reference

When providing a review copy to your client, it can be extremely useful to add a timecode window burn to the video. A timecode window burn superimposes the program’s run time over the visuals of the program, in order to provide a consistent timing reference that your client can use to identify the exact moment referred to in each note he or she gives you. You can add a timecode window burn to your program in several ways:

  • You can add a window burn to your program within Final Cut Pro, using the Timecode Generator or Timecode Reader filter.

  • You can add a window burn to a Motion project using the Timecode generator.

  • You can add a window burn to media you create with Compressor, using the Timecode Generator filter.

  • If you’re having a review session using iChat Theater Preview, you can turn on a timecode reference that the remote viewer can see.

For more information, see the Final Cut Pro and Compressor documentation.