How to edit QuickTime videos in Linux

Q I want to get into a little video editing on Linux. My digital camera (Kodak DX6490), is not really a video camera, but it does take videos in QuickTime (*.mov) format, but these are not understood by Kino or Avidemux. I downloaded Cinelerra, but have seen other forums where this program has been called overkill for a video newbie like myself to be learning on. I tried rendering an AVI file from Cinelerra to port to other editing software and noted that the colours had changed (at least they appeared to have done when I played it in Xine). I don't know where to go from here. Is there a beginner's guide to simple editing to help me learn the basics of Cinelerra? Just enough to be able to cut sections from the videos, tie them all together and then save in whatever format? Also, is there a way that I can update my Fedora system so that Kino recognises the *.mov files (I think it is meant to, but there is something different about the ones made by my particular camera).

A You need the latest version of Kino - 0.8.0 - which supports import of various files by means of FFmpeg or MEncoder. Fedora includes Kino 0.7.6. You can find a suitable RPM for FC4 in the Dries repository at http://dries.studentenweb.org/rpm/packages/kino/info.html, which should let you import any file that FFmpeg or MPlayer can handle. You are likely to hit a couple of gotchas when you first try to import files. You may get an error that reads:

The playlist is empty and the default preferences for video creation have not been specified
aborting.

To fix this you need to go to the Defaults tab of the preferences window and set Normalisation to either PAL or NTSC (the default is None). If you have MPlayer installed, you might still get the error message:

Failed to load media file.

It appears that Kino doesn't always play nicely with MEncoder, which is Kino's default choice for loading most file formats. If this happens to you, open /usr/share/kino/scripts/import/media.sh in a text editor, as root, and change line 13 to

which mencoderREMOVE > /dev/null

This kludge makes Kino fail to find MEncoder, and use FFmpeg instead. You can change the MEncoder name to anything that the which command won't find; adding REMOVE makes it clear what you have done.

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