Ok, here you go:
1. Export the clip from FCP to your hard drive with (Apple Menu) File>Export>QuickTime Movie (⌘E) using "current settings." This will be your source clip.
2. Start Compressor and open a Batch window if one is not already open. (⌘N)
3. Import your source clip using the Add File icon in the upper left corner of the Batch window.
4. Enter "you" into the typing area of the Settings Tab. (If no Settings tab is visible, go to (Apple Menu) Window>Settings (⌘3) to create one.) This will bring up a preset named "YouTube sharing." Drag and drop the icon inside the borders of your source clip in the Batch window.
5. Select the preset that you just dropped on your source clip. This loads it into the Inspector. (If there was no inspector window to begin with, double click on the preset on your source clip to open an Inspector window.)
6. In the Inspector window, there are six square buttons near the top. Click on the fifth from the left (next to the last) one. It should show the name "Geometry" in a space below the buttons. In the Dimensions area, change the Frame Size drop down menu to "100% of source."
7. Press the "Submit" button at the bottom of the Batch window.
8. A drop down window allows you optionally) name your batch. Do so if you wish. Press the Submit button in the drop down window to start the compression process. The converted file will be named after the source plus "-YouTube sharing" and written to the same folder as the source clip. You can edit the name of the clip to whatever you like after it is written.
Have a good time and good luck on your entry.
Every clip will encode a little differently, but that preset tends to run around 1MB/sec of 1080 footage.
If you go over your limit, go back to the Settings window (making sure you've selected the preset on your source clip) and press the second (Encoder) button then the Video: Settings... dropdown. Here you can set the Data Rate to a lower number. The Summary view of the Inspecter window will give you a revised estimate of the filesize.
It's not an exact science, but you can get where you need to be in a couple of iterations.
Everything I gave you is for Compressor 3.5.3, that's the version last update and the correct version for Final Cut Studio 2009 (a.k.a. FCS3). Re-read what I wrote with an eye for capitalization. For example, where I wrote "the Settings window" the capitalized Settings indicated that it is the title of a window. That may help you get my drift.
As for the "failed" message, try repairing permissions and running Compressor Repair as David Mclaine recommended on the first page of this thread.
If something is unclear, ask about it. I remember that you are under the gun to complete this, so I'll be online from about 9 a.m. PDT and looking for a response.
Keep the faith.
Thanks for a ll your help!
I did finally get things to work. I'm a newbie dummy and needed a little more help than you could provide here. Between what you said and the below webpage I got'er done!
A. You're no dummy, you just need to work in FCS more often.
B. I'm the one who should be embarrassed; I've known Ken for over a decade and completely failed to mention his fine tutorials. I haven't seen the gentleman for a couple of years, but that's no excuse.
I'm glad all ended well and good luck as you go forward!