Posts tagged with "FCP X"

Dan Frakes On The New Mac Pro

Dan Frakes:

While older Mac Pro models were appealing to a broad range of demanding users, the 2013 Mac Pro focuses almost entirely on the things true professional users need: multi-core performance, workstation-class GPUs and GPU computing, fast I/O, and the like. Say what you will about the new Mac Pro’s lack of options for internal expansion, but Apple doesn’t appear to have spared much expense when it comes to the components it did include. The result is that the new Mac Pro is the first Mac in a long time that’s clearly—and almost exclusively—for actual professional users.

See also: Dan's review at Macworld and FCP.co's first 24 hours with the new Mac Pro and Final Cut Pro 10.1. For video professionals, the tests performed by FCP.co are impressive.

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Apple Updates FCP X With Multicam Editing, Enhanced XML

With a press release, Apple today announced a major update to its professional video editing tool Final Cut Pro X. The new version, 10.0.3, available as a free update on the Mac App Store, introduces several highly requested features and fixes, including multicam editing, enhanced XML 1.1 support, and advanced chroma keying. A free trial of Final Cut Pro X is available on Apple's website.

Following a controversial launch in June (when the company even made an exception with refunds), Apple responded to negative FCP X feedback promising that more functionalities and improvements would be released in the following months. Today's update brings multicam editing from up to 64 different angles of videos and photos, and XML for advanced interchange with different plugins and applications that support the Final Cut Pro X ecosystem, such as DaVinci Resolve, CatDV (color correction and media management), and the 7toX app from Intelligent Assistance which "uses XML to import Final Cut Pro 7 projects into Final Cut Pro X".

Final Cut Pro X v10.0.3 includes a collection of groundbreaking new tools for editing multicam projects. Final Cut Pro X automatically syncs clips from your shoot using audio waveforms, time and date, or timecode to create a Multicam Clip with up to 64 angles of video, which can include mixed formats, frame sizes and frame rates. The powerful Angle Editor allows you to dive into your Multicam Clip to make precise adjustments, and the Angle Viewer lets you play back multiple angles at the same time and seamlessly cut between them.

Final Cut Pro X builds upon its robust, one-step chroma key with the addition of advanced controls including color sampling, edge adjustment and light wrap. You can tackle complex keying challenges right in Final Cut Pro X, without having to export to a motion graphics application, and view your results instantly with realtime playback.

The Loop has more details on Apple's implementation of multicam editing using audio waveforms:

What’s really different in Apple’s implementation of multicam is how the company does its automatic syncing. Of course, you can sync camera angles by using the timecode or the less accurate method of using the time of day, but Apple has a new way of syncing camera angles — audio waveforms.

Townhill explained that with Final Cut Pro X, you can now sync scenes using the audio waveform captured with the camera. This doesn’t have to be the final audio used in the scene, but it can be used for syncing purposes. Of course, manually syncing cameras is still available at any time.

Furthermore, Apple states in the press release that "broadcast monitoring in Final Cut Pro X is currently in beta and allows you to connect to waveform displays, vectorscopes, and calibrated, high-quality monitors to ensure that your project meets broadcast specifications. Final Cut Pro X supports monitoring of video and audio through Thunderbolt I/O devices, as well as through third party PCIe cards." This update also allows users to import and edit layered Photoshop graphics, and import/export effect parameters through XML 1.1.

At the moment of writing this, the Mac App Store still reports 10.0.2 as the latest FCP X version available. The update should go live later today at this link.


Apple Releases First Final Cut Pro X Update, Free 30-Day Trial

As reported by Jim Dalrymple at The Loop, Apple is releasing the first update to Final Cut Pro X on the Mac App Store today, alongside a demo version so customers interested in switching to FCP X will be able to try out the new features for free. Following the much criticized launch of Final Cut Pro X in June -- a major update to Apple's video editing suite -- the company posted an online FAQ detailing why some old features of Final Cut didn't make it to the new version, promising that they would listen to users' feedback and re-implement the most requested functionalities in order to provide video professionals with a complete and revolutionary suite for video editing.

According to The Loop, version 10.0.1 focuses on re-implementing the most requested features.

We got a lot of feedback from our professional users,” Richard Townhill, Apple’s senior director applications marketing, told The Loop. “We listened to the pros and have taken their top feature requests and put them in this update.

The new version includes Xsan support, rich XML import and export, and more. Macworld has a list of changes in this Final Cut Pro X update (such as "intelligent stem export from project timelines" with a new Roles feature, GPU-accelerated export, and full-screen mode in Lion), and Apple says more functionalities such as multicam editing and broadcast-quality video monitoring will be delivered through another update in 2012. At the moment of writing this the 10.0.1 update is still not available on the Mac App Store. Apple said that despite heavy criticism, they haven't seen video professionals abandoning the Final Cut Pro X platform in the past months. To ease the transition process to FCP X, Apple made the old version available through tele-sales again. Today, Apple is also releasing a free demo version of FCP X:

We are giving people the opportunity to see for themselves how powerful, amazing and revolutionary Final Cut Pro is,” said Thornhill. “No app takes advantage of Lion and the Mac the way Final Cut Pro X does.

Macworld reports the free 30-day trial will be available from Apple's website later today:

The large differences between Final Cut Pro X and its predecessor, Final Cut Studio, have put many editors off, making them wary of dropping $300 on a program that’s more rewrite than update. As such, Apple has decided to offer these editors an olive branch, and provide a free, fully-functional 30-day trial of the software, which should be available for download later on Tuesday from the company’s website. If you have Final Cut Studio installed, the FCPX trial can peacefully co-exist alongside it—no need to create a separate partition.

Final Cut Pro X is available at $299 on the Mac App Store. Read more


Adobe Sees 45% Growth Of Premiere Pro On The Mac, Credits Final Cut Pro X

According to a report in The Loop, Adobe will today announce that sales of its professional video production tools have skyrocketed year-over-year. Which, in large part has been driven by growth on the Mac platform with disillusioned Final Cut Pro users moving over to alternative products after Apple released the controversial Final Cut Pro X version earlier this year.

As the backlash began from professional video editors, Adobe targeted them, giving discounts for Premiere Pro (Adobe’s alternative to Final Cut Pro) and publishing video tutorials and documents to ease the transition. This appears to have payed off with a 45% growth of Adobe’s video production tools on the Mac and total year-on-year growth across both the PC and Mac platforms at 22%.

In comparison to Adobe’s efforts, Apple hasn’t done much to quell concerns apart from release a Q&A article, refund customers for the purchase and only last week they began selling Final Cut Pro 7 again but at the standard $999 price.

[Via The Loop]


Apple’s Training Site Back With Lion, FCP X Certifications

As noted by TUAW, Apple's training website has come back online with new OS X Lion certifications and training courses -- some of them "coming soon" and others starting "this fall". The training website is available at training.apple.com and it's also received a facelift with a cleaner design, and plenty of OS X Lion and Final Cut Pro X graphics.

Indeed, the New Releases section on the site points to new FCP X training and exams, OS X Lion training and exams, as well as new Mac Integration Basics. IT professionals willing to support and learn about new OS X technologies might want to look at the new Lion courses coming this fall to Apple Authorized Training Centers worldwide. Books and resources are already available online and others will soon be for pre-order, and the new 10.7 certifications coming this fall will include:

  • Apple Certified Associate: Mac Integration 10.7
  • Apple Certified Support Professional 10.7
  • Apple Certified Technical Coordinator 10.7

The Mac Integration Basics 10.7 exam "will be available soon" according to the Training website, but full documentation has already been posted online for download as PDF or iBookstore guide. On the other hand, those interested in Final Cut Pro X certification can watch Final Cut Pro X Apple Pro Video Training, with classes coming "soon" worldwide.

Snow Leopard certification and courses are still available and according to Apple will remain online until January 2012.



“One Time Exception” with Final Cut Pro X Refunds

As noted by The Next Web, amidst criticism surrounding the release of Final Cut Pro X on the Mac App Store (seen by several video professionals and customers as a consumer-level app lacking many of the "pro" functionalities of the previous version) Apple has begun issuing refunds to App Store customers who have bought Final Cut Pro X, Motion, or Compressor. In an attempt to do "damage control" after the criticized release, an alleged email to a customer outlines how the company is making an exception to issue refunds for FCP X, as opposed to their usual policy for iOS and Mac apps.

EOSHD reports the following email:

Moving forward, I understand that you are not satisfied with the app “Final Cut Pro”. I can certainly appreciate you would like a refund, and I would be more than happy to help you out with this today. In five to seven business days, a credit of £179.99 should be posted to the credit card that appears on the receipt for that purchase.

Please note that this is a one time exception because the iTunes Terms and Conditions state that all sales are final.

Apple has been known for not including refunds for apps in their sales policy, thus forcing customers to deeply consider each purchase before clicking the buy button. In a support document, in fact, Apple clearly states that "all sales are final":

Subject to the iTunes Terms of Sale, all sales on the iTunes Store are final. When you agree to purchase an item by clicking the Buy button (using either 1-Click or Wish List), your Apple ID is charged and the transaction cannot be cancelled. See the iTunes Terms of Sale for additional information.

The same policy is corroborated by the iTunes Terms & Services, which outlines the "final" status of sales and rentals and indicates Apple doesn't issue refunds for price reductions:

All sales and rentals of products are final.

Prices for products offered via the Services may change at any time, and the Services do not provide price protection or refunds in the event of a price reduction or promotional offering.

However, Apple has also been known for applying a different policy before: by filing a formal request on the App Store customer support website (usually within hours after a purchase) and providing an explanation of what went wrong with a purchase, Apple usually issues app refunds to unhappy customers who believe the software they purchased doesn't function as advertised or has technical issues that prevent a correct usage. Indeed, this seems to be the most common explanation provided by Final Cut Pro X customers as a thread on Apple Support Communities confirms.

It's not clear how exactly Apple is making an "exception" with FCP X -- whether it's because several days have passed since the release, or because they never had to deal with large-scale Mac App Store refund request -- but it appears the company is moving forward to ensure customers who don't find FCP X suitable to their needs will get their money back. Refunds are nothing new to the App Store, but this may be the first time Apple has to provide such extended support due to Final Cut Pro's troubled launch.


The New York Times’ Final Cut Pro X Q&A

The New York Times' Final Cut Pro X Q&A

Following the much discussed backlash over the launch of the "revolutionary" Final Cut Pro X for Mac, The New York Times' tech columnist David Pogue has compiled an interesting Q&A on the available/missing features of the application, with direct input from Apple.

The “missing features” generally fall into three categories: features that are actually there and have just been moved around, features that Apple intends to restore and features that require a third-party (non-Apple) add-on or plug-in.

Among the covered topics, Pogue reports Apple says re-enabling support for the multi-cam functionality is a "top priority" for the company.

Complaint: There’s no multicamera editing. In the old FCP, you could import the footage from various cameras that covered an event (say, a concert) from different angles simultaneously, and then easily cut back and forth between them while editing. It was a star feature of Final Cut, and it’s gone from FCP X.

Answer: Apple intends to restore this feature in an update, calling it “a top priority.” Until it does, here’s a stopgap facsimile of multicam editing: If you drag two clips into parallel timeline tracks, you can choose Clip->Synchronize Clips. By comparing their audio tracks, the program aligns the clips exactly. Now, each time you select a piece of the upper video track and press the V key (“disable”), you are effectively cutting to what’s on the lower video track.

Another feature that generated much disappointment in several Final Cut Pro X reviews on the Mac App Store is the impossibility of opening old FCP projects. Pogue confirms this:

Complaint: Can’t import old FCP files.

Answer: As I noted in my column, this is true; your old projects are stranded forever in the older FCP program. You’ll have to keep both programs on your hard drive, and edit the old projects in the old program. When you install the new FCP, your old copy is safely preserved.

Read the full, technical Q&A here. In the weeks leading to the release of Final Cut Pro many professional video editors suggested it would be difficult for Apple to ship a completely rewritten version usable since day one by large studios and production houses. As Final Cut Pro X has been re-imagined from the ground up, clearly Apple needed to cut some features out of the first release, but they've already confirmed they're aiming at making the update cycle for FCP faster with releases every 6 months or so.

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Final Cut Pro X Hands-On Video and Software Updates

Following this morning's release of Final Cut Pro X, Motion 5 and Compressor 4 in the Mac App Store,  YouTube user Matt's Macintosh has posted a first 10-minute video hands-on with FCP X, available at $299 as digital-only download. The video, which we're embedding after the break, highlights some of Final Cut Pro's new functionalities such as the revamped iMovie-like UI, magnetic timeline, new effects, as well as the additional content Apple has already made available for FCP X users via Software Update. Furthermore, the author of the video notes how real-time rendering allows to import, edit and play clips in seconds without any waiting as in the previous versions, and how text effects look like a combination of iMovie (undoubtedly a source of inspiration for the FCP X team) and Motion.

Check out the video below.

Update: direct links to the additional content download mentioned in the video:

Final Cut Pro X Content

  • Sound Effects: Over 1300 rights-free sound effects installed into the Audio Browser of Final Cut Pro X.
  • Audio Effect Presets: Additional preset effects for the Space Designer plug-in.

Motion 5 Content

  • Motion Templates: A variety of professionally-designed, customizable templates.
  • Motion Library Content: Animated vector graphics, backgrounds, template media, sample Motion projects, and royalty-free still images.
  • Motion Sample Media: Clips and images for use with Motion Help examples and tutorials.

ProApps QuickTime Codecs

  • Apple Intermediate Codec
  • Apple ProRes
  • AVC-Intra
  • DVCPRO HD
  • HDV
  • XDCAM HD / EX / HD422
  • MPEG IMX
  • Uncompressed 4:2:2

Apple has also published a database of cameras compatible with Final Cut Pro X here with the following notes:

  • Final Cut Pro X is compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPad 2, and iPod touch (4th generation).
  • Final Cut Pro X is compatible with most MiniDV tape-based camcorders using DV and HDV formats, which use a FireWire (also known as IEEE 1394 or i.LINK) cable to transfer video.
  • If you have imported video into iPhoto or Aperture from a digital still camera, you can drag compatible video clips from iPhoto or Aperture directly to an Event in the Final Cut Pro X Event Library or a project in the Timeline.

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Apple Releases Final Cut Pro X On The Mac App Store For $299

UPDATE: Final Cut Pro X is now available in the Mac App Store, as well as Motion 5 and Compressor 4.

Apple has just issued a press release noting that Final Cut Pro X will launch sometime today on the Mac App Store for a price of $299.99 with Motion 5 and Compressor 4 also out today for $49.99 each.

Apple® today announced Final Cut Pro® X, a revolutionary new version of the world’s most popular Pro video editing software which completely reinvents video editing with a Magnetic Timeline that lets you edit on a flexible, trackless canvas; Content Auto-Analysis that categorizes your content upon import by shot type, media and people; and background rendering that allows you to work without interruption. Built on a modern 64-bit architecture, Final Cut Pro X is available from the Mac® App Store™ for $299.99.

Some of the new features of Final Cut Pro X include a vastly improved video editing experience, completely rebuilt to feature a "dynamic editing interface" including what Apple dubs a 'Magnetic Timeline' which lets editors assemble shots simply and quickly with no unwanted black gaps in the timeline. In a similar vein clips can now be connected so that as you move one clip to a new place on the timeline, all the other connected clips (such as music or audio effects) stay synchronized with the clip. Compound Clips is another new feature that lets editors combine a group of elements (clips, audio etc) into just one clip that can easily be moved around on the timeline.

Another cornerstone feature of FCP X is vastly improved media organization, starting with support for many more formats of video. Content is now automatically analyzed with FCP X organising your footage into preset kinds of footage including whether or not there are people in the shot (and whether it is just one person or a group), whether it is a wide or closeup shot, whether the footage is stable or shaky and so on. There is also support for keywords which can be applied quickly to any piece of footage, combine this feature with the content auto-analysis and you can find the shot you need nearly instantly. Other key points of interest include 'Smart Collections' allowing users to organize clips without having to physically move the file and direct access to content libraries such as Aperture and iPhoto.

As had been expected, performance is also a huge area of improvement for FCP X, off the bat there is support for the 64-bit architecture and then there is resolution independence (4K footage is now supported), improved GPU utilization, background processing and a shared render engine between Final Cut Pro, Motion and Compressor. Some final points of note are that FCP X comes with a large variety of video effects, including the standard 'Film Grain' and 'Cartoon' to many others. There are also title sequences and bundled audio effects that are royalty free.

Motion 5 which is also available from today from the Mac App Store for $49.99 which is Apple's motion graphics tool that has been redesigned, adds new templates, simplified chroma-keying and similarly takes advantage of 64-bit architectures. Compressor 4 is also available for $49.99 in the Mac App Store and has seen some modest improvements and feature additions, most notably is again support for 64-bit architectures and GPU utilization. Curiously both Motion 5 and Compressor 4 mention Blu-Ray recording - perhaps a Mac accessory could soon allow direct Blu-Ray recording, or perhaps new Mac Pros.

You can purchase Final Cut Pro X in the Mac App Store for $299.99, also available in the Mac App Store is Motion 5 for $49.99 and Compressor 4 for $49.99. FCP X requires at least 2GB of RAM (4GB is recommended), an OpenCL-capable graphics card or an Intel HD Graphics 3000 or later, 256MB of VRAM and at least 2.4GB of disk space. For a full run down of new features be sure to check out the Final Cut Pro X page on the Apple Website.

Jump the break for Apple's full press release.

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