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The Final Cut Pro X Community Review: Post Your Impressions of 'iMovie Pro' Here

06.22.11 @ 1:39PM Tags : , , , , ,

Now that Final Cut Pro X has been out for a full 24 hours, the internet has rendered its verdict on the render-free software, and most of the backlash on Twitter seems to be coming from seasoned professionals. Sure, there were bound to be some repercussions when rebooting an application with a 94% customer satisfaction rate. But some of the features Apple dropped — tape ingest, multiclip, backward compatibility, and the viewer itself — make the “Pro” moniker pretty hard to justify. I’m only getting my hands dirty with FCP X now — which, I should note, works perfectly on the video editor’s hackintosh — and while I’m definitely experiencing some growing pains getting used to the new interface, I feel it’s too early to tell whether I’ll go back to Premiere Pro. However, here are some quotes of what’s being said around the web. Also, I want to hear from you — what are your honest thoughts so far?

If FCP X isn’t targeted at professional editors working as part of a team (with the sort of data ingest needs and EDL output requirements that FCP X lacks), who is Final Cut Pro X targeting? DSLR filmmakers. Case in point, here’s how quickly the audio synchronization feature works:

The feature is not going to give you the full feature set of the terrific plugin Pluraleyes, which has advanced features like correcting different speed recordings, but it’s features like this that make one understand Apple’s chief design imperative with FCP X: to save editors time. However, it seems they seem to have shipped an incomplete version one (as far as pros are concerned), though it could be a great tool for new editors. As for the seasoned pro, however, here’s what’s being said on the internet:

  • Steve Martin: “I love the organizational intelligence of FCP X and frankly it’s long overdue… But the fact remains that there is no professional audio editing capabilities… The other thing that needs improvement is color correction. While the simplicity of the Color Board will be great for the YouTube set, professional colorists will find the color grading tools wanting. With no way to export EDL’s or XML files, there is no way to hand off your project to a Colorist – so again, you’re stuck in your own sandbox until the next upgrade or someone really smart is able to write hooks into FCP X.”
  • Scott Simmons: “To completely start from scratch and build a new, modern application is commendable but when it lacks many, many features that its predecessor had and you’re still calling it pro and a newer version then you can expect a lot of negative feedback from current users who rely on those features. FCPX currently sits at two and a half stars in the App Store.”
  • Philip Bloom: “I like a lot of the things I have seen like match colour, magnetic timeline, organisation and the speed… It really does feel like learning something from scratch rather than adjusting to a new system like I have with CS5.5. DSLR editing is a lot easier as it can cope just fine with H264. Probably best in the long run to still transcode out of it for certain projects but the ability to edit DSLR footage natively is a big plus… To sum up, FCP X is an ingenious fast piece of software that is going to upset just about every editor out there used to final cut pro! BUT is probably going to appeal massively to new editors without previous NLE experience, they will love it I am sure.
  • Philip Hodgetts: “At version 1 Final Cut Pro X won’t support some professional workflows, but for other professional workflows it will be more than capable. Using Final Cut Pro X to cut together a story, I’m struck by how fast it is to achieve a result, as if everything was designed to get a result a quickly as possible.”
  • David Leitner: “Leaps in technology come at a cost. Remember Apple’s transition from OS 9 to OS X? What a shock to be forced by the imperatives of progress to abandon our OS 9 comfort zone for the strange planet Unix. It took years for many of us to recover full functionality, since quite a few cherished OS 9 apps were never ported over. But this abrupt break with the past gave us multithreading and eliminated hair-pulling system crashes. It gave us a modern and powerful operating system with modular architecture that swung wide the door to the future… FCP X will not become a protean workhorse overnight. It will take time. It guarantees an interesting ride however.”
  • Gary Adcock:”With this release, Apple shows us the future in which data streams from all the devices we work with communicate seamlessly, sharing media behind the scenes. Think of the advantages and possibilities when all the effort you put into setting up a shot or project continue downstream from your camera into post-production, or follow your content when it’s delivered on the web. That’s the promise of Final Cut Pro X. Will that promise be fulfilled?… Stay tuned.”
  • Walter Biscardi: “This was the product that completely built my company starting in 2000 / 2001 and now it’s time for me to say goodbye. As I tell everyone else, if the tool isn’t working for you, then find a tool that does. Fortunately we have Adobe Premiere which has made incredible strides of late and already supports our AJA Kona boards. We also hear that Avid is on a path that will open up the cards soon as well. So it’s been a good 10 year ride and if the application does truly get to a point where we can use it again, we could always bring it back. But for now let me just say, Goodbye Final Cut Pro and Thanks for all the Fish.”
  • David Pogue: “Professional editors should (1) learn to tell what’s really missing from what’s just been moved around, (2) recognize that there’s no obligation to switch from the old program yet, (3) monitor the progress of FCP X and its ecosystem, and especially (4) be willing to consider that a radical new design may be unfamiliar, but may, in the long term, actually be better.”
  • John Gruber: “This ground-up rewrite may well have been the right thing to do. Apple seems convinced that this is a better fundamental concept for video editing — and, really, storytelling in general. But it may prove risky not to offer a transition period. Hell, even with iMovie, when they made the switch from old-style editing to the new model (and lost a bunch of features in the initial release of the new iMovie), Apple kept iMovie HD 6 available as a free download for two years. If iMovie users were worth appeasing with a transition period, surely professional Final Cut Pro users are too. If Final Cut Pro X can’t even open Final Cut Pro 7 projects, how quickly can editors be expected to switch?”

For those of you who have downloaded it and used it yourself, what are your impressions so far? Leave them in the comments…


We’re all here for the same reason: to better ourselves as writers, directors, cinematographers, producers, photographers... whatever our creative pursuit. Criticism is valuable as long as it is constructive, but personal attacks are grounds for deletion; you don't have to agree with us to learn something. We’re all here to help each other, so thank you for adding to the conversation!

Description image 122 COMMENTS

  • Sucks. Feels like you have no control over the edit anymore.

  • The description of the product in your title says everything it needs to.

  • Adrian Jans on 06.22.11 @ 1:50PM

    Looks like I’ll be holding off on a purchase of FCPX for a while. It sounds like its full of lots of great improvements, but its missing a lot of basic functionality we had in FCP7. I’m sure sooner or later updates and plug-ins will be able to give everyone what they feel we’re missing, but it’s difficult to judge when that will be.

  • It’s pretty sad to see people call it “iMovie Pro”, especially from this blog which I respect. There’s an extreme amount of childish comments coming from people who haven’t even read the user manual or have even launched the application. There are also many misleading and untrue statements in this article. For instance It does capture tape. Here’s an excerpt from the user manual:

    “You can import media from a tape-based camcorder or tape-based device. To determine which clips you want to import (rather than importing all of them), you can view them using Final Cut Pro before you import them.

    To check whether your tape-based camera is compatible with Final Cut Pro, go to the following support page: Final Cut Pro X Supported Cameras and Devices.”

    • It shares the same organizational philosophy and interface elements as iMovie, so I don’t think it’s a stretch to call it iMovie Pro — especially when using quotes around the moniker.

      And is it just me or does the Final Cut Pro X Supported Cameras and Devices page not list a single device that uses tape?

      The program’s only been out for a day; people are bound to get stuff wrong until we all log more hours with it. I’ve got it open right now, however, and I don’t think there are any untrue statements in this post…

      I also say “it’s too early to tell” and have been careful to include positive quotes to go with the negative. I just spent $300 on it — I’m not opposed to the app, and am excited about its potential.

    • Clayton Arnall on 06.22.11 @ 3:08PM

      It doesn’t open FCP7 files, so I’d say by definition it’s a different product than the existing Final Cut product line. I think iMovie pro is a perfect name, and I don’t even mean that in a bad way… just more of a fact.

    • Erik Hildebrandt on 06.22.11 @ 6:10PM

      It does not print to tape or export to tape. It does capture to tape but it does not export, I don’t think there is anything childish about what people are saying, I think they are really good points and it’s scary being such a long standing FCP user. I don’t know what my next editing software purchase will be.

    • Importing tape using a camera is a rather “prosumer” approach (or even consumer, but I’m trying to be generous), and tells me that this first version is targeted at prosumers, not professionals. My company relies on importing from various professional tape formats (DVCProHD, HDCAM, Digital Betacam) using Pro VTRs through an HD-SDI connection for the highest quality possible image. I have years worth of great legacy video on tape and I have to reference back to those tapes frequently. So, lack of PROFESSIONAL tape import is one of many dealbreakers for me.

  • Luciano Rocha on 06.22.11 @ 2:26PM

    The jump from FC7 to FCX has bein made unnecessarily painful.
    I think professionals would gain more if Apple took it’s time to integrate all the lacking features on this new and exiting product.
    The way they did was: they blew our minds for 1 minute with wonderful new features, just to disappoint us in the next minute with really basic faults.
    In my opinion, the jump from FC7 to FCX is more painful than the jump from FC7 to Premiere Pro CS5.5 now. And we will see this happening even more after this release.
    Adobe must be making the evil laugh right now.

  • Wasted $400 for FCPX, Motion and Compressor yesterday. Back to FCS3 for some time to come.

    App store purchases are not permitted refunds as stated in the terms and policies. Apple made some cash yesterday with what appears to be more than half of all purchasers just down right pissed off.

    There are some very much desirable new tools and features in FCPX, but overall it’s a bonehead workflow for anyone with editing experience. I find that people with little to few people with previous Final Cut editing experience seem to love it. Those with experience find it more of a hindrance than anything else.

    Only time will tell. A lot of time will be needed to get it to production worthy.

  • I’m not a professional editor, but I was AVID & FCP7 trained. I was also trained on a Quantel Editbox, way back when. Quantel was my favourite, as it had the most ‘organic’ feel and a naturally quick workflow.

    Ever since I got my Mac (only a year), I’ve been a huge fan of iMovie. It felt like the evolution of the Editbox. So, I don’t think calling FCPX “iMovie Pro” is an insult. I find it to be a much better way to edit. Maybe it’s because of the type of editing I do…….small videos and DSLR filmmaking.

    I’m sure the complaints from the pros are legit. But, I think growing pains should be expected. A little time to get used to it is warranted. As well, the plug-in world will catch-up and make a huge difference.

    However, for web videos, low-budget filmmakers, doc-makers, first-purchasers…… me……….FCPX is easily the best choice.

  • I was excited for this product but it quickly faded out. I just wanted to scream out loud how I hated this product. It maybe too soon for me to say this but for now I hate iMovie Pro. I hate how it lacks color correcting freedom. Color was the only reason I stayed with Final Cut, now I am permanently transferring to Adobe.

  • I totally think that there are going to be some growing pains in changes at first, FCP has been a workhorse for many for years and years, and change is always odd at first. But I also think it does not take long for a professional to realize what is not there that is essential. When its how you make your living, it all matters. We need efficiency, but not necessarily simplicity. Control is everything.

    I think it would have been better for them to wait and bring in EDL, XML, and all the things we rely on for solid workflows, than release something that a lot of working professionals just cant use. Yeah its early, but this is a release.

    So thats my two cents.

    side note: Take the magic wand icon out!

  • I work in broadcast, and FCPX is a total non-starter. If it won’t support my hardware or allow me to open old FCP projects then I’ve got no use for it. Some of the editing improvements look good, but it simply won’t do what we need it to.

    If all you’re doing is working with new projects & outputting to the web I think it’s probably a decent choice for an NLE… but it’s got more than a few glaring limitations.

  • I have been working in fcp7 for a year now, not long at all compared to most of you, but i think that this is the way of the future. From what i have seen it looks similar to the style of editing that i edit, and other top end professional editors that i know edit. But i really do think it is the way of the future, it just takes getting used to. I went from adobe (which i hate with all my heart), to sony vegas pro (i know most of you wont acknowledge it as a serious editing program) and then to fcp7. I think of this is the way that LE moved to NLE, times are changing, the way we work, shoot and edit is changing. No program is perfect when it 1st comes out, but i love the organic timeline and workflow and any NLE that offers me super fast workflow and no waiting around to render is a dream come true. I can imagine how the top end editors feel, it is a complete change, but give the boys at apple time and all will come right, bugs will get fixed, plugins added issues sorted out etc.

    Personally i wouldn’t buy it yet either but in a few months, yes i would.

  • I feels just like the move to OS X which I loved. Then too, I wasn’t tied into legacy systems, so I switched on the first release and then got monthly boosts for about a year, where things got better and better. It was the most sustained fun I can recall from my computing life. By the time OS X was ‘ready’ I knew it inside and out, ie. that all the chicken-waving voodoo I knew from OS 9 was obsolete mumbo jumbo.

    Today too, my workflow is entirely file-based. Even TV commercials just get uploaded.

    I’m a professional editor and I’ve been using FCP since version 1. I’ve never used iMovie. I’m accepting that there is a better way to edit than the Moviola metaphor from the 1980s. I’m happy to learn it. I think the world should switch away from QUERTY keyboards too though, if that tells you anything. Querty is designed to prevent you from typing quickly or easily. On purpose. You type the way you do because of obsolete technology from the 1930s. TV, as we know it was invented about the same time.

    Perhaps Apple should have explained it to some people better. There are a lot of unrealistic expectations and hysterical over-reactions. Apple should have told them it was like the move to OS X. It should have told them it wasn’t a replacement for FCP7. That it was missing features. That some people would have to wait. People don’t like change. It makes them angry. They lash out. The world is ending. They don’t care.

    I look forward to the arrival of Color. I imagine the integration will be such that working with other studio apps no longer resembles ’round tripping’ in a strict workflow. To the extent that apps are non-destructive, they become more integrated and less workflow-bound.

  • X is a huge step in the right direction. After editing with it for a few hours, the only reason to keep 7 on my machine is to update a few older projects. Sure there are a few people who use Final Cut as an Offline editor that are going to be upset at least for a while, but the lions share of us are going to be blown away at how fast and how well a project can be edited.

    Not being a colorist, I found the with the old color it was hard to make 2 clips match. I just tried out the new color panel and had a very close match between 2 DLSR’s in a few seconds.

    The audio waveforms are now much easier to match up. And the audio control in the time line is also as good as or maybe even better than before.

    If all you have ever used is Final Cut Pro then you’re going to have to learn some new tricks. If you have ever used someone else’s non linear editor you will find the new interface extremely intuitive and efficient.

  • Chris Plouhar on 06.22.11 @ 7:47PM

    Dealing mostly with team-based broadcast productions, the lack of print to tape and XML is a deal breaker…and I had such high hopes. I’ll hold off on FCPX(imovie pro). Might be time to seriously consider media composer.

  • What happened to “Awesome” This perhaps is the worst development by Apple, I have ever seen, I want my money back, I hate it.

  • “growing pains”? I am tired of hearing his SORRY EXCUSE!!!! This is NOT a 1.0 version of the program. It is iMovie improved period. A professional editor knows that only 50% of you work is editing. The rest is creating deliverables and collaborating. FCP X is only useful for a one man shop doing small projects that they’ll never have to roundtrip between any other apps. Project management is mess. In a multiuser multi-computer environment what?
    Improved color correction? How do you know? You can only evaluate the gadgets not the REAL RESULTS since there is no way to connect this to a professional display!

  • It sucks. Pure and simple.. Not a single update for over 2 years and this is the best they can do? I do not believe the “version 1″ crap. There are no accidents here, there are also no real explainations, which they should have provided at launch. They clearly feel the pros do not deserve an explaination. “Here’s your software, now live with it and shut up.. We have phones to build.”

    This program is a slap in the face to the pros. You think they don’t know what we need? They know, and they know what they left out. If the cared, they should have been first out the gate with “This is our start, we know things are missing, and you will see them within the next 6 months, and they will be great” This would have shut down 90% of the critics.. But that did not happen. And it was not an accident.


  • All i will say is, as both a professional offline and online editor working with final cut for years. This is like having my wife go out one day and come back with a ton of unnecessary and just plain awful plastic surgery. Sure she’s got the same name but damn is she f’d up. Fcp x is a cockslap in the face of pro editors. Forget no XML, try no clips, bins and proper sequences. “events” wtf??! And the audio editing is a f’n joke. The beauty of final cut was that both new editors and old could pick up the software and use it finding their own workflow.

    I for one will be sticking with fcp 7 till they pry it from my cold dead hands (or at least stop supporting it). Fcp x would never work in the reality/documentary tv shows I currently work on. We rely on multiple sequences to sync mutlicam scenes etc. Fcp x is meant for consumers plain and simple. Sure I don’t have to render anything, but with I would be finished cutting a show and rendering it with fcp 7 well before the cut was even done in X.

    Fcp is dead. We had a good run

    • Alec Sprinkle on 06.23.11 @ 11:14AM

      They stopped supporting it on Tuesday with the release of FCX. Not kidding. The Final Cut Pro 7 page now even takes you to X.

  • Anthony Haden Salerno on 06.22.11 @ 11:18PM

    Fortunately I never used iMovie, so I’m not jaded as to it’s interface and do no associate it with novice or consumer editing. I’m a DSLR shooter and the workflow is pretty sweet. I do feel that the audio side of FCPX is seriously lacking, and the inability to output to a ProTools friendly format for audio mixing is a serious oversight. That being said, I have faith that there will be one if not more updates this year that will sooner or later address this issue and others. I also think the price point says a lot, in that we may see many add-ons from Apple that slowly bump up the over all cost of the “suite” over time. The fact that there’s no 3rd party plug-in support is symptomatic of this being essentially a reboot of FCP. Why not put this out in the world, get real world feedback from users and then respond with appropriate updates and plug-ins? That’s what I think Apple is doing. They’re not reinventing the wheel, they’re reinventing the car, wheels first. In other words, slowly.

    The news over at Red Giant, the makers of Magic Bullet Looks, is that they have not seen FCPX until it’s public release. That could say many things… Apple doesn’t care about 3rd party plug-ins (unlikely), Apple wants the editing community, the serious editing community to get used to this new approach to editing before investing bigger bucks and time (more likely).

    I’ve edited on FCP and Premiere for years and yes this is A LOT different and it’s taking some getting used to. But you know what? It’s fun and it’s fast! I look forward to the new world of editing. It won’t be long before we’re moving clips with our fingertips! I think FCPX is the beginning of something big.

  • Terrible, terrible, terrible. Anyone kissing Apple’s ass on this one is foolish. Shame on all of us who blindly purchased before the reviews are out. Refund request already filed until Apple can deliver a product worthy of my cash.

    Here’s hoping the speed boost in Premiere 5.5 makes that a worthy competitor. HDSLR editing is a nightmare to properly clean, grade and render in FCP7. Was banking on these speed improvements helping my workflow, but not at the cost of all the features we came to rely on as professionals.

    It’s one thing to learn a new and better way of doing things–another thing entirely to be told you don’t need the old tools without being given a replacement.

  • Harrison Genokowski on 06.22.11 @ 11:35PM

    I noticed that users tend to think this new release is for the most part horrible, but all the people who make money as Apple shills seem to like it. Lesson learned–don’t ask people who depend on Apple products to make a living, comment no a new product.

  • I love it. That may be because I’ve never used FCP7 though. I’m not coming at things from a compatibility, how will this fit into existing system standpoint. I don’t need OMF, EDL, or XML.

    So I’m mostly noticing the fantastic interface, and how great it works for editing. Definitely glad I bought it.

    • No disrespect, but if you’re not coming at things from a compatibility standpoint, you’re not representative of the professional community. I don’t mean to suggest that you’re not a professional, but import/ export, tape and machine control are part and parcel of most professional workflows on a regular (if not daily!) basis. I own an audio/video post facility and am an audio editor/ mixer. If my editor can’t send me a quicktime and an OMF/ AAF of the project, I can’t edit or mix what he’s been working on in Pro Tools. If we can’t work easily with any of the tape based HD and SD formats we still see on a regular basis, we can’t work with a significant number of producers who bring us work on a regular basis. If we can’t import FC7 projects, it’s not an evolutionary product, it’s a different program altogether with a misleading name. Without being vitriolic, it really isn’t “pro” at all. It’s either simply not finished, or it really is “iMovie Pro”. It has less in common with Final Cut Pro 7 than Premiere Pro does. How disappointing. Avid must be thrilled.

      • Go download Automatic Duck with the $700 you saved and all your problems are fix. Apple is a bitch, they never cared about how shit used to work, they only care about the future and FCPX is the future just wait.

      • When did the OP suggest that he was representative of the professional community? As far as I could tell, he was just stating his own opinion.

        I love all of this “industry clamor.” It’s when a bunch of relatively insecure members within a community feel the need to collectively resist change and cling to their arbitrary comfort zones to make themselves feel relevant.

        Stop reacting out of FEAR. You can continue to use FCS3 until the rest of the “community” catches up with newer standards and workflows. I give it about 6 months – wait until some big name director publicly admits that his production primarily used Final Cut Pro X to edit a major film. Then, all of a sudden, that “industry clamor” becomes industry praise.

        • Alec Sprinkle on 06.23.11 @ 11:21AM

          Sure sure … I guess he’ll be editing it all on his single monitor imac also. You know, since there’s no way to send files to other people to work on (other than the .mov’s), and I hope he has a lot of room on his boot disk for all of the footage.

          No one is reacting out of fear. I’m pissed that I have to start from scratch and learn a whole new editing program. Whether that’s FCPX, Avid, or Premeire, I have to learn a system I don’t know. And don’t say “It’s just like the step from FCS2 to FCS3.” That’s a simple yield. This is a brick wall.

        • Ok, so you’re saying that eventually the “community” will eventually no longer need OMF files for doing professional audio mixing? Or creating HDCAM SR master tapes? Try telling that to the Discovery Channel, History Channel, TLC, BBC, and most of the other networks who distribute most of the content the majority of the world sees. Those networks have established technical production standards that FCPX features cannot accomodate. And those standards don’t change quickly.

  • IMHO the professional reviewers are being overly kind in their reviews for fear of upsetting Steve (and thus receiving the Leo Laporte treatment).

    I have been a die hard Apple Fan Boy for over 25 years, this is the first time I have been truly disappointed by Apple. This is definitely an iMovie update as opposed to a Final Cut Pro update. You can’t even import current FCP 7 projects (but the opening screen asks if you would like to import an iMovie project). Bizarre.

    I was so hoping that it was going to be a cool upgrade, but in reality it is a pretty huge step backward

  • Wow! History repeats itself. I think in most cases you can tell the age of the person posting by which side of the line they fall on when in comes to FCP X. As Dan Achatz stated above, ” If all you have ever used is Final Cut Pro then you’re going to have to learn some new tricks”. However, if like me, and you have been editing for decades (not just years) then you have experienced other editing platforms and multiple workflows. Only with that kind of perspective do you realize that this is just another transition period. All of this resistance to FCP X is EXACTLY how the “professional” industry reacted to the introduction of FCP 1 in 1999. “it’s not a professional program…It lacks standard features… Avid users will never switch over…”
    ANY OF THIS sounding familiar?

    People thought that Apple was wasting its time by supporting the new DV/Firewire standard back then (again-not professional) but it turned out to be a brilliant move. They are doing the same thing with FCP X and the DSLR revolution : building towards the future. If anything, I should be more upset than a younger editor, not because Apple is trying to change my workflow, but because I have less years of my editing career in front of me and won’t have the same experience of watching this new editing platform mature and blossom.

    Is FCP X perfect out of the gate? Of course not. It took until FCP 4, for that program to reach maturity (and IMHO it took Premiere even longer. Talk about a program that stuck the word “Pro” on it’s name way too early!) As for myself, I have so many current projects mired in FCP 7 that I am not going to rush out and switch over. I will wait for the release of LION and the first “update” to FCP X before I bite. And like most professionals, I will use FCP X and FCP 7 side by side for a while until the transition is complete. No panicking necessary.

    • Comapring the release of FCP1 and FCPX is not a valid argument. FCP1 was a brand new product without any user base or reputation. There were no big expectations or reputation to uphold. With the release of FCPX there is already a huge professional user base who all have big expectations. There is an industry reputation to uphold. To me, this release says Apple doesn’t care about or respect their established professional users that has been supporting their product for a decade.

      • Alec Sprinkle on 06.23.11 @ 3:34PM


      • You are not hearing what Richard G is saying.
        This is NOT about upholding reputation or meeting expectations. This is about changing the way we look at things, the way we work – ultimately put: about changing the world.

        Sure there is still a lot of legacy footage out there on tape, but the media itself is dead. Yes dead. Just like the floppy drive. And the importance of it is degrading, just as the media itself.

        The way to empower and create the possibilities of the future, is to make them things simpler, not more complex to achieve. Anyone remember the early days of burning cds? A recording studio used to call me in twice a month to burn the cds that were sent for mastering. The software was infinitely complicated and repulsive to use. The resistance I met when I first introduced Toast was overwhelming, until people started to understand, that the end result was just as good, with less possibilities of error, and getting the work – which in itself was of no artistic importance – done.

        Funny how many people here are commenting on FCPX and saying how disappointed they are or that they´re moving to Premiere – without even owning a Mac.

        For all you guys that are not trolls and apologists, my advice is: Spend the meaningless sum (yes, if you truly ARE the professionals you claim to be, then a few hundred IS a meaningless sum) on buying FCPX. It may not remove your need for sticking with FCS (or Avid or Premiere if you wish), but it WILL give you a heck of a tool and a totally different point of view for the price of a plugin.

        • I will agree with your point of view concerning new ways of doing/seeing things. Yes, innovation and evolution is necessary in the video industry. But I still must totally disagree with your statement that legacy media (tape) is dead. I have dozens of clients that are major networks or Fortune 500 companies who have spent millions of dollars on video shoots in the past 10 years, and they still expect (and will continue to expect) to be able to incorporate that video into projects. FCPX will not allow me to access that media easily without using a time consuming workaround. And I have done many projects for those clients that will continue to need updated and revised for years to come. FCPX will require me to rebuild each project from scratch, rather than update it, and the clients will not pay for a rebuild (as they shouldn’t), so that is time and money that I will lose.

          • No, what I mean is that the media is dead in the way that it is no longer a living media. Like 8 mm or 16 mm film. Material still exists, but nobody will record another foot of media in that format (not counting those who for some reason want to go retro tripping and dabble with “the good old stuff”).

            Old existing material either already is or – over time – will be transferred to some kind of better and less vulnerable media than tape. The issue will become obsolete or at least much less important over time.

            I am fully aware of the importance of being able to access old tape footage, but again, just to make myself totally clear: Tape as a living (footage being captured today) media is DEAD. There is no PROFESSIONAL reason whatsoever for still capturing original footage to tape, on the contrary.
            Hence: Tape = dead.

            And, just like with so many other functions (audio editing, disc authoring, etc), there is no reason why this function MUST reside inside the application. There´s a bunch of very adequate ways of getting to and from tape and using (e.g.) FCPX for the other parts.

  • Interestingly enough, as I try to wrap my head around the new way of editing that using FCP X entails, I realize that if I DON’T like it, Adobe CS5.5 is a must-purchase. Funny, I’d never felt that way about CS5.5 until FCP X came out. That said, learning an editing program is like learning to play an instrument — you’re going to suck at it initially. It’s only once it becomes second nature, when it feels like an extension of yourself, that you can get comfortably creative. So I’m going to do my damndest to get comfortable with FCP X in the hopes that future versions add some more professional features; if I find I like the “old” way better, I’ll jump ship to Adobe. I suspect a number of editors are in this boat — and I suspect Adobe is having a party to celebrate the fact that Premiere is no longer a copy of Final Cut. Not because Adobe did anything different, but because Apple did and (in part, at least), it’s blowing up in their face.

    On the other hand, there are a lot more DSLR filmmakers and corporate/industry videographers out there than there are feature filmmakers. Apple’s targeting the larger market. Future versions of FCP X will show whether they still have a commitment to feature editors, but version one certainly left a lot of features on the table.

  • Maturity=forward progress.

    Change does hurt, because we have to look at things in a new way, and use new tools to accomplish the tasks we were used to accomplishing with old tools. But Apple did not solely provide a new way of doing things here, they also took away functionality. They went backwards with features and functionality that were important to certain users, namely the pros.

    They didn’t say, folks, I know you’re used to doing things this way, but here is a new way of getting from point A to point B. Than we say, ugh that hurts, I have to change. No, what Apple is saying here is, it’s not important to get from point A to point B any longer, therefore we are going to yank that functionality.

    Now, if the plan was to have that functionality added back in later down the road, then they should have told us up front, not hijack the NAB show, kicking other presenters off the stage, so they can speak primarily to professional users, and blow smoke up their rear-ends.

  • I wish I understood what point Gary Adcock was trying to make. “…when all the devices we work with communicate seamlessly…”? Well, that seems out of the question without tape ingest.

    “Think of the advantages and possibilities when all the effort you put into setting up a shot or project continue downstream from your camera into post-production, or follow your content when it’s delivered on the web.” Doesn’t the effort I put into setting up a shot or project already continue downstream… regardless of what editor I use? Why has FCPX suddenly become the catalyst?

    For me, this looks like yet another example of Apple forcing their vision of the future on Mac users. And I’m sure many will trumpet FCPX as the holy grail of editing. Looks less than half-baked to me. Think I’ll stick with Adobe.

  • Michael Clark on 06.23.11 @ 4:13PM

    The comments section here posted my partial draft post above when it refreshed in the middle of me writing it without me hitting Submit. Since I do not see a delete function I will continue/refresh my post:

    He Did Not say “When all the devices we work with” but in the important future context of “Apple shows us the FUTURE in which data streams from All The Devices We Work With communicate seamlessly, sharing media behind the scenes.”

    This is made possible by all the Metadata(refer back to his & many others including Metadata Guru Phillip Hodgetts) writing on the Metadata features of FCPX, content analysis, keywords, updates 64 bit FCPX 10.1 & higher versions, Lion OS, file based storage from a mulitude of devices & much more. What exists now is quite a leap in power of previous NLE systems. So even at brand new 10.0 version the great majority of what people really still need in terms of professional workflow within multiple system companies will be coming in the near future of the next few months & this first year based upon how quickly development teams(Apple & third party) can update and/or write new software. Remember he specifically referred to “The Promise of Final Cut Pro X & “Will that promise be fulfilled?” so I wouldn’t be too impatient in only the first week out.

    Interestingly I just saw a FCP X test where six different based digital camera files from a iPhone, HTC Android Phone, Go Hero Pro HD, Sony compact point & shoot, Panasonic AVCHD, Canon DSLR H.264 were all placed in the timeline. In FCP X the whole timeline edit was natively available immediately to play & do real time effects.. In FCP 7 it went to rendering ALL THE FILES very very slowly effectively stopping the edit & edit system usage for a long time until all the files would be completely rendered. This is already realizing the much faster editing workflow of what FCP X is about.

    Within these digital devices is a lot of metadata worth of shooting & production information that will stay with the edit all the way through to final output.

    In the near future you will be able to ingest legacy tape footage via a third party plug in or via a Apple update and the beauty of that is that you will be able to type into the metadata all sorts of information about the original footage. I can personally think of a lot of legacy 3/4″ & Betacam footage where that will come in. And right now you can ingest legacy DV & HDV footage right into FCP X.

    I also suggest that one read & view all the information & videos that are on Apple’s FCP X web site plus reading in depth reviews of people that have spent many hours with FCP X to get an understanding of what is really there in this totally brand new program before making unresearched &/or out of context comments. A lot of these comments are very remiscent of when a brand new program called Final Cut Pro 1.0 came out. It really wasn’t ready for a lot of usage until version 1.25 came out but it revolutionized non linear editing big time and “The Promise” of the future of the brand new Final Cut Pro 1.0 was definitely there as this brand new Final Cut Pro 10.0 definitely is.

  • Michael Long on 06.23.11 @ 4:32PM

    As to importing existing FCP projects…

    You might be able to render portions of it and bring it in as a new project, but the 30-year-old Avid timeline interface and the new magnetic storyline interface are just enough different that I’m almost willing to bet that you can’t do it. Especially with support for some features like EDL and OML missing.

    You can probably come close, but if it’s not perfect pros will scream just as loudly that FCPX “destroyed” their projects. For Apple it’s a no-win scenario….

  • To this professional editor, (25+ years on almost every platform), the release of FCP-X is one of the most resounding belly-flops of all time. “iMovie Pro”? Certainly. “Final Cut” Pro? Not even close. We still have to deal with legacy projects, analog tapes with time code, still need to export OMF for our mix sessions, still need multi-cam. The history of editing didn’t start on tuesday, but Apple apparently would like us to believe it did. Apple may sell a zillion units of “iMovie Pro” but they have taken a big, ugly bite out of the hand that “fed” them when they were trying to gain respectability in the pro space. This may well go down as the biggest gaffe since the “Newton.”

  • The positive review I see of FCPX remind me a lot of the positive reviews of Windows Vista when it came out.
    Equal parts denial and fan boyism.

    Still for $300, if I had a mac I might pick it up for fun.

    • Apparently you haven’t read the reviews on DVXUser from people who panned it on the first day, stuck with it, and then said “This is starting to grow on me.”

      Not everyone flames a product and tosses it in the trash before seeing what it’s all about, but apparently many FCP users do. – Tim

  • A tragic and short sighted release. This was a golden opportunity for a 64 bit FCP to sell a tonne of high end
    12 core mac pros with lots of ram. Instead it is a toy which will appeal to low value users without the coin to buy
    the apple hardware that would have made a pro version fly. They had the opportunity to be the king but instead
    they are the joker! Avid 64 bit, due soon, will be laughing all the way to the bank.

    • I have been saying this forever!!! I started with FCP and I feel I wasted my time. Avid is much more professional and has a much better workflow when having to work with 3 other editors at the same time.

  • Michael Clark on 06.23.11 @ 5:50PM

    It’s laughable that anyone that has read & informed themselves of even just a half dozen of the in depth information, reviews & news of FCP X could think that it is a “resounding belly-flop of all time & “the biggest gaffe since the Newton”. Sure as brand new software at 10.0 its not yet ready for established legacy production houses but it soon will be & also running concurrently on the same FCP 7 system.

    After millions of FCP X’s are sold & it is multi-updated & everyone of the third party FCP developers is still selling software for it I highly doubt if you will hear this kind of 2nd day out impatient unrealistic whining that is so reminiscent of when FCP 1.0 was released. Apple and the third party developers are already hard at work on updates & third party software. Sure Apple should have said that feature updates are coming soon and still have sold FCP 7 for another month but realistically in todays world of marketing that wasn’t to be. However your existing FCP 7 system can sit there side by side the brand new FCP 10.0 and serve you well.

    This uninformed, unresearched, fear of the future small but vocal minority whining will subside as the stuck in the old mindset past realize that this type of file-based metadata editing is the future of alll future editors whether they like it or not. No one has taken away your FCP 7 editing system that still functions quite well(albeit quite slow compared to FCP X) for legacy editing. I just looked at someone’s large collection of legacy DV & HDV tapes and right now at this brand new program stage FCP 10.0 works just fine with all of them.

    Given the legacy cumbersome way & expensive way that Avid, Premiere, FCP 7 has evolved into I can not wait until FCP 10.0 is updated & third party software is out there in the very near(middle/late summer or earlier). A much faster, efficient way of editing is what you have to gain.

    • “Given the legacy cumbersome way & expensive way that Avid, Premiere, FCP 7 has evolved into I can not wait until FCP 10.0 is updated & third party software is out there in the very near(middle/late summer or earlier). A much faster, efficient way of editing is what you have to gain.”

      That ‘legacy, cumbersome & expensive way’ you mention is what separates the professional television and film industry from the rest of the flock. Avid uses hardware to make it the #1 industry solution for editing around the globe (and continues to be so). FCP had begun to get closer, unfortunately for it’s state now. Premiere is now finally reaching it’s peak performance, although I’d hate to run it while the rest of the creative suite runs (there goes all the ram you’d hope to use).

      I do have really high hopes for FCPX, as I’ve used FCP “legacy” for a decade on a daily basis. With some luck and a public outcry to finally consult veterans in the NAB, they do have the opportunity to make something useful.

      • “That ‘legacy, cumbersome & expensive way’ you mention is what separates the professional television and film industry from the rest of the flock.”

        So being professional means you have to use bloated, cryptic, needlessly complex software? NLEs are merely tools to help put together a video/film product. If you pride yourself on being a professional because you know how to use a certain complicated piece of software, then you’re doing it wrong. It’s about the end product you produce, not the tools you use to get there. Many of Spielberg’s recent films were still cut analog on reel to reel. Obviously FCP X has some problems/missing features right now, but if it streamlines and simplifies the editing process (which is its focus), then isn’t that a good thing?

    • Mike Chapman on 06.24.11 @ 9:51AM

      Excuse me, Mr. Clark, but I am a working, award-winning video editor with 25 years experience. I have worked on at least a dozen different “platforms” and I have no fear of change or of the work involved to learn a new mousetrap.

      As an editor I use software/hardware as a tool to ply my trade, but this release of FCP, on its own, cannot support the way I or my company or my professional colleagues make a living. It lacks basic tools like multi-cam editing, analog tape ingest and OMF export that we use all the time.

      IF the new interface and workflow had been rolled into the existing suite of products, it would have been terrific. As it is, it’s nothing more than iMovie light. It’s not that we don’t want it or fear it; it’s that we can’t use it and make a living. It’s like giving an Indy driver a Corolla and telling him to compete in the 500.

      Don’t believe me? Read the reviews of other professional editors, not those of the tyros or the Apple apologists.

      So far, the loudest huzzahs are from folks who don’t use edit software to earn a living. As for those of that do – I still say, “Biggest belly-flop since the Newton.”

      • Michael Clark on 06.24.11 @ 5:10PM

        “As an editor I use software/hardware as a tool to ply my trade, but this release of FCP, on its own, cannot support the way I or my company or my professional colleagues make a living.”

        No one or Apple is barring you from working as an editor with FCP 7 & FCP 3 Suite right now. Although somewhat slow & behind the curve technology wise after a couple years, it works well for thousands of higher end facilities using lots of & legacy equipment & tapes. There will still be facilities working with those for years to come and there will still be a shrinking need to work with that large legacy of old technology.

        “It lacks basic tools like multi-cam editing, analog tape ingest and OMF export that we use all the time.”

        Apple development team has already said that multi-cam will be in a future release. I’m not surprised that it didn’t make it into version 10.0. Analog tape ingest will be in an update or addressed by a third party as will OMF export.

        What is very clear though is that right now(June 2011) and in the future is that media production means metadata file based systems whether it is a phone camera, compact point & shoot, hundred’s of thousands of DSLR’s shooting stills & video, small to larger camcorders and all the way up to the latest Red Epic packages. I suggest one carefully examine all the ways of working with the new tools & the new tools that are coming in the very near future. It may be a little uncomfortable at first but a “true professional” will be able to adapt, learn and go with the future flow.

        “IF the new interface and workflow had been rolled into the existing suite of products, it would have been terrific”

        I suggest you talk to software developers about how impractical, super bloated & unworkable for most FCP systems that would be. Engineering & application development wise that is a non-starter for a number of reasons. In order to develop a very fast 64 bit code product with a faster way of editing the whole program had to be written from scratch which requires the equivalent of many man years of development time. It is a brand new program just like way back FCP 1.0 was. Your existing FCP 7 or FCP 3 Suite will co-exist just fine on the same edit system and all of their features are still available for you to use. The new 64 bit Motion 5 & Compressor 4 now are tightly integrated with FCP X. It will be interesting to see what other companion programs will complement FCP X. Only thing is that one has to be willing to explore, LEARN and use these new programs instead of just whining about them. ;)

        “It’s not that we don’t want it or fear it;”

        That is good, so you’re going to start using it after the first update(which will be very soon) and really digging in to all its features.

        “it’s that we can’t use it and make a living.”

        Not fully yet at brand new version 10.0 but you will be surprised at how quickly some people adapt, learn & change to its new faster way of working. In a year there will be millions of FCP X users. These days there are a lot more people that do much more than just edit. They write, produce, light, run audio, shoot & post most of what they do.

        “So far, the loudest huzzahs are from folks who don’t use edit software to earn a living.”

        Obviously there is no substaniation for that from any source.

        “Biggest belly-flop since the Newton.”

        Ha Ha Ha Ha! The sales figures come July 2012 will show how absurd that unrealistic remark is.

        C’mon now, come back to the real reality that Apple will be updating FCP X with new features soon, that not a single company that makes software for FCP is abandoning them but instead are going to be making a lot of new software for the new FCP X and Apple will sell millions of downloads of FCP X. That is the beginning of a very successful evolutionary path and one that is necessary given where technology is now and is headed. Don’t fear the future, you only have knowledge and a more efficient faster way of working to gain.

  • One of the last comments summed it up really nicely. Most of the positive reviews are coming from borderline apple fan boys and reminds me of people who liked Vista when it first came out.
    Another stating that they totally bit the hand that fed them in the first place. This goes to show that they didn’t hire any legitimate editors to help design this thing. Just one man show types. They did it with Final Cut v1 when they didn’t consult anyone from SMPTE and just made up their own units for waveforms and scopes. Are these even included in FCPX at all?
    I used to teach FCP a few years ago and I swear, 1/3 people would just want me to teach them how to use iMovie in a way that mimics FCP. I ended up just getting them to download Express and go from there. FCP scared them, and now they got what they wanted.
    Apple will assuredly sell this budget ‘Pro’ solution and I’m sure there will be some quality looking work to come out of it. However, anyone with any real world experience will be able to see it shine through like a black eye under HD makeup.

  • I think the biggest error Apple made was mis-managing expectations. By labelling the software “Final Cut Pro” anything, people are expecting everything I currently have, but more. They’re expecting that the projects they currently have in Final Cut will work in the new version. But Apple didn’t make that move. I agree with what Apple has done, and while I haven’t yet purchased the software I think it will be great for me. I also don’t have a very professional workflow. While I do currently use Final Cut Studio 2, I work on my own on most projects, don’t know much about color or audio editing, and I welcome anything that can make that part of my workflow easier and not require me to learn a separate program.

    What would have almost worked better would have been if Apple DID release it as “iMovie Pro” and then had a flurry of people reviewing it claiming that “iMovie Pro” was an understated name. Of course, they felt this was the future of pro editing and Pro users wouldn’t have given “iMovie Pro” much of a glance. So perhaps they should have marketed under a completely new name, which would have set expectations appropriately. Either way, in the end, I’m excited about the product and its future. I just have to save up $300 which thankfully should be much, much quicker than saving up $1000.

    • Whoops, should clarify in that first paragraph that I mean I agree with Apple’s decision to re-write Final Cut from the ground up, I don’t agree with how they managed expectations.

  • Tim Holdsworth on 06.23.11 @ 6:30PM

    I will surly be switching to Premiere as no XML and OMF makes it a no go. Audio is half the story, and if I can’t get my story to pro tools for FCP X, then I won’t be using FCP X. I already applied to get a refund.

    • Daniel Jacobs on 06.24.11 @ 4:14PM

      What’s up with everyone suddenly wanting to “switch to Avid or Premiere”? You act like this suddenly makes FCP 7, which apparently a lot of you are using, obsolete.

      If you don’t like X (and I’m not sure I’m a fan of it either at this point) then either wait for the product to mature like you would for any new product before introducing it into your workflow or don’t buy it.

      • Hear, Hear!!! . . . for how much I HATE FCP X, for how disappointed I am with Apple and for how cheated I feel for paying $300 for iMovie Pro . . . I still have my trusted FCP 7.

        Thank g-d Apple has made it possible for the two programs to run together on the same machine. Imagine the horror if clicking on FCP X prevented you from going back to FCP 7.

  • Alex Sheridan on 06.23.11 @ 6:44PM

    Love it. I’m “the guy” Apple was targeting… advanced weekend warrior with a DSLR. iMovie was to simplistic and FCP was to esoteric… and well….un-fun. FCP X is iMovie on steroids which is exactly what I wanted. I understand the woes of the pros, but Apple has just tapped into a huge market, and as a shareholder, I like that. A+

  • RobertJueneman on 06.23.11 @ 9:11PM

    FCP X may or may not meet my needs — TBD. Although I have 50+ years of still photography experience, video is still new to me. I used FCP to edit an extended (45 minute) training session, but because of the absurd 4GB limitation on file sizes imposed by the Canon DSLRs, it was necessary to use two cameras to record the action. if, as has been reported, multicam is not supported, then FCP X is not going to meet my needs.

    Likewise, I use an external audio recorder in addition to the built-in Canon microphones. If it isn’t possible to combine such tracks with perfect synchronization, even using Plural Eyes, then FPC X won’t work for me. Unfortunately, the reviews to date haven’t clarified these issues, and even though $299 is a lot less than I spent on FPC 7, I’m not going to buy it until there is some definitive resolution for these issues.

    Still undecided, but interested.


  • Folks just imagine for a second that FCPX had never been released. FCP7 it’s a good editing tool right? Needs improvements? Sure. But for now, let’s just wait a bit more until X excels, then switch. Stop the drama people, nobody is dying here. Tell the story well and don’t worry so much about the tools. In my eyes, FCPX still has “not” been released.

  • you know what sucks? You cannot keep FCP 7 on your Mac and run FCP X at the same time. You have to make a choice. And for now its obviously gonna have to be FCP 7. No EDL? You have to be joking if you think this not a big deal. Have fun making youtube movies to the rest!

    • Michael Clark on 06.24.11 @ 1:40AM

      jason, there is no professional workflow reason for FCP 7 & FCP X to be open at the same time. You’re going to need to work with FCP 7 along with its FCP 3 suite programs for workflow that needs those or FCP X, Motion 5 & Compressor 4 for file based metadata workflow that needs the speed & power of those new programs. The good news is as several have reported is that FCP 7 & FCP X co-exist on the same edit system which Was Not the case with previous new releases as they had to be the only FCP program on the booting system drive.

    • Where did you hear that? I’ve read specifically that they can co-exist on the same system.

    • Final Cut Pro 7 and Final Cut Pro X can still exist together. Final Cut Pro 7 is nudged off the dock by the new app but is still to be found in applications within Final Cut Studio.however you cannot have both running at the same time.
      I have used Final Cut Pro for years, upgrading at a reduced price whenever an upgrade was available. Final Cut Pro X is not available as an upgrade so my loyalty goes unrewarded. Why? Because,apparently, this is a new discrete product. OK. Then why can’t I run my other paid- for-and-nothing-to-do-with-this-new-product –Final-Cut-Pro alongside this new one. Because I can’t! Looks like Apple has taken my cake and eaten it.
      I have some horrid AVI files to deal with. My old Final Cut will accept them but needs to render them. I-movie accepts them but needs flip 4 mac to use them without a watermark. Final Cut Pro X will not accept them at all. However it will open them when previously imported to an imovie project that it then opens.
      Haven’t been using FCPX long but these two are already cheesing me off.

    • Final Cut Pro 7 and Final Cut Pro X can still exist together. Final Cut Pro 7 is nudged off the dock by the new app but is still to be found in applications within Final Cut Studio.however you cannot have both running at the same time.
      I have used Final Cut Pro for years, upgrading at a reduced price whenever an upgrade was available. Final Cut Pro X is not available as an upgrade so my loyalty goes unrewarded. Why? Because,apparently, this is a new discrete product. OK. Then why can’t I run my other paid- for-and-nothing-to-do-with-this-new-product –Final-Cut-Pro alongside this new one. Because I can’t! Looks like Apple has taken my cake and eaten it.
      I have some horrid AVI files to deal with. My old Final Cut will accept them but needs to render them. I-movie accepts them but needs flip 4 mac to use them without a watermark. Final Cut Pro X will not accept them at all. However it will open them when previously imported to an imovie project that it then opens.
      Haven’t been using FCPX long but these two things are already cheesing me off.

  • I’m switching to Premiere.

    I’m using Premiere right now (for the first time in years) to edit a project. Not too hard to pick up the differences from FCP7 (easier than switching to FCPX), runs fast, no need to transcode my XF300 footage (I just copy across the cards to my computer and reference the files directly. No need to render even). AND it’s 64bit… so time to update my RAM I suppose. ;)

    To me this is the logical step forward. At the moment FCPX is just not right for me… maybe after 6 months of updates…

  • Michael Clark on 06.24.11 @ 2:08AM

    It will be interesting to see where Vegas Pro settles in all this as it was packed with features like 64 bit, native file editing & updated interface & much more. It was recently updated but I suspect that the next update will come sooner as the Vegas Platinum just was. Before Apple FCP X came out at $299, Vegas & Vegas Pro were the best bang for the buck NLE’s & edit suite packages out there. I also wouldn’t be surprised if Vegas Pro comes out in not too long at a new lower price point & with some great new features too..

    One thing this has shown so far is how overpriced Avid MC & Premiere are. They won’t come down to $299 but a realistic cost would be $499. FCP X at $299 & Motion 5 & Compressor 4 at $49 each are a tremendous value even at this stage with the brand new not updated yet FCP X or not yet any 3rd party software for it FCP X 10.0.

    The coming soon new Mac Air’s with Lion, thunderbolt technology & extremely fast solid state boot drives will be able to efficiently run all 3 new programs(& more to come) in a extremely thin footprint with plenty of fast HD media storage available for Full HD programs via thunderbolt. A external SSD media drive for media can be quite compact with very low power needs to go along a new Mac Air’.

    It’s an exciting time to see great new fast tools at lower price points be available to many more people so that there is much more access & democracy in the creative world.

    • If I’m not mistaken, isn’t Vegas PC-only? And with FCP being Mac-only I don’t see them really in competition with each other at all.

      • Michael Clark on 06.24.11 @ 4:03AM

        Yes, Vegas Platinum Suite & Vegas Pro are PC only, however since PC hardware is priced lower they are an alternative NLE with a very deep feature set. As another editing system tool they are competitive with FCP. In fact a quad core Vegas Pro NLE editing system is a bargain compared to a Mac FCP system. They will also be changing their approach to software & editing & pricing.

  • Here is what is galling to me: Apple put their ego before their customers. We’re Apple, we radically transform everything we touch!

    Except, one little problem: Video editing didn’t need a revolution. Video editing isn’t complicated enough to need one. All we are talking about is connecting little pieces of video into one longer piece of video. Tweaks and performance bumps are always appreciated, but in this case there just wasn’t any equivalent to a bunch of college kids screaming for a way to bring their stolen music to the gym.

    So Apple took away a bunch of things we depend on to give us a bunch of things no one asked for. Thanks Apple! Hate to break it to you, but innovation in art comes from the painter, not the paint.

    • You have nailed the subject. It is an arrogant and ignorant move from a company that has ignored us
      and the trajectory they had been following. On the bright side they, during the good run, have at least brought
      the price of NLE to a realistic price.

  • I’m appalled at this release. I don’t claim to have been editing for decades like some of the other posters, but switching from avid to FCP in 2003 was the best thing I ever did. Whenever Apple released a new version of iMovie, I would dive in to see how it compared and it always fell short. I simply can not get my mind to wrap around what I need to do in iMovie to accomplish the things I do in Final Cut.

    And now comes FCPX, which has the same timeline functionality as iMovie. I mean, “magnetic timeline”? I cut nearly all my pieces to music, basically I’m being forced to put placeholders in for every shot before I choose them, and I can’t even lay down markers in real time to let me know where the beats in the songs are…

    The other thing that screams amateur to me is (and this is just one example), the re-timing feature, which allows you to slow a clip to only 50, 25 or 10%. That simply makes it unusable for me. There’s lots of things like that. There’s no sense in the program that we editors labor over every single frame. It might be great for a simple story or documentary, but imagine cutting a tightly paced montage or action sequence. Oh, the horror.

    Truly, I wish Apple had called this FCXpress or something similar, its just not up to par. That said, why is everyone talking of jumping ship to Premiere? I’m perfectly happy with FCP7, just disappointed with the upgrade. Time will tell.

  • Hi !

    Ok agree that FCP X is little pain for its new features but since FCP 7 is working well so why bother, there’s no need to create such a hype.
    If somebody doesn’t liked it, ok………who knows one day it could turned out to be the best NLE system.
    And no one know what Apple has in its stores……it is also very strange that they released it on their site I mean at App store…….


  • I completely understand the anger and disapointment in Apple’s new professional editor. That being said the program gives us a fair glimpse at what editing will be like in the future. Apple has scored very high in the innovatie game if I may say so.

    It’s just very sad that they have dumbed down their software package so that the imovie generation can use it. We don’t need to see Youtube, iMovie, and Apple TV icons in the application. Apple we are professional editors and by doing this you are insulting our profession.

    I have made a summary of the plus and minus points in order of importance to me.

    There is a distinct difference between features not available and things that have moved around. I only mention the real missing elements.

    Plus points:

    -Timeline editing is more powerful and handy.

    -Background rendering (absolutely brilliant).

    -Organizing and finding files.

    -Interface (clean, easy to understand and no more separate windows).

    -DSLR support (again brilliant).

    -Once you find out how to keyframe things it is much better (but only once you have..)

    Minus points

    -NO BACKWARDS COMPATIBILITY with Final Cut Pro 7!!!

    -No manual white balance with the eyedropper.

    -Can’t choose custom width and height for projects.

    -No multi-cam editing

    -Interface poorly customizable

    -No third party plugins available yet.

    -Effects are childish and unprofessional.

    -Intergration with iTunes and iPhoto is also unprofessional

    The program is potentially a beast and will change my editing career drastically. I’m excited and yet angry, which is my biggest frustration. If this program was released with the old features I’d most likely fall in love with editing once again. Waiting for renders to be completed is/was a pain in the ass. Updates are coming soon, so there is light at the end of the tunnel

  • Though all these old stuff are missing…i dont know. Apple has always been highly criticized. Someway—somehow— I think theyre going to innovate and make a big comeback when it comes to this FCPX.

  • Josh Williams on 06.24.11 @ 2:23PM

    My initial gut reaction upon opening it up was one of complete horror. Import iMovie projects? Surely that was a joke. I can just see Walter Murch importing all the academy award winning films he’s edited in iMoive. But after using it for a while I gotta say it is not as bad as I initially thought. It is missing a lot of crucial features. The new features are all pretty nice, except for the horrible media management. I guess the biggest problem is that this clearly wasn’t designed with the pros in mind. No this was designed for the iMovie/Youtube crowd. They wanted to attract a bigger audience. I don’t know why they couldn’t have done that with Final Cut Express of even an iMovie update. Not sure why they had to take FCP and turn it into a consumer product. That is the biggest problem.

    • You hit the nail on the head, Josh W.

      Agreed, Apple, the “prosumer” market is gargantuan compared to the full-on “pro” user base. But it didn’t have to be an either-or situation — they could have made iMovie Pro AND FInal Cut Pro X. They could even have done the old DVD Studio trick of making the same program toggle between easy and advanced interfaces.

      So to leave 50% of indie editors out in the cold just so they could capitalize on the cache the brand “Final Cut Pro” has accrued — thanks to those very same editors, btw — is incredibly callous.

  • Michael Clark on 06.24.11 @ 7:19PM

    MUST READ ARTICLE(link at bottom):

    Professional Video Editors Weigh In on Final Cut Pro X by David Pogue, New York Times

    “But in this post, I’m going to address the concerns of professional video editors, one by one. [UPDATE: The information here comes from consultation with Final Cut Pro X's product managers at 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.

    I’m not trying to be an Apple apologist; FCP X offers legions of amazing features that the old version didn’t have, but it doesn’t have all the features of the old one, either. It’s only fair, however, to separate what’s really missing from knee-jerk “It’s so different!” hysteria.”

    “Professional editors should (1) learn to tell what’s really missing from what’s just been moved around, (2) recognize that there’s no obligation to switch from the old program yet, (3) monitor the progress of FCP X and its ecosystem, and especially (4) be willing to consider that a radical new design may be unfamiliar, but may, in the long term, actually be better.”

  • Michael Clark on 06.24.11 @ 8:01PM

    More David Pogue on Final Cut X:

    Apple’s Final Cut Is Dead. Long Live Final Cut

  • Lorenzo DeMille on 06.24.11 @ 8:31PM

    Don’t get me wrong, I love Apple products. Unfortunately, I hate this one and I am trying to get a refund. By the way, why waste your time quoting from “professionals” who make money of Apple. They are in no way objective.

  • Michael Clark on 06.24.11 @ 8:58PM

    Some of this over the top whining without even using the program reminds me of how Hitler would have reacted if he was a FCP editor. Amazingly right on & posted 5 weeks ago. Enjoy! :)

    Final Cut Pro X – Hitler Reacts:

  • Michael Clark on 06.24.11 @ 9:03PM

    That “Hitler Reacts to Final Cut Pro X” link should have been:

  • File under if you can’t beat ‘em, sabotage ‘em: the same day Apple released FCP X, they released a system update that breaks Adobe’s Mercury Playback Engine on most CUDA enabled Macs.

  • Paul Sellen on 06.24.11 @ 11:19PM

    So far i am enjoying learning / using the new software but if you want the answers to most of the questions listed here you must read David Pogues updated blog with answers from Apple

  • Chris K Jones on 06.25.11 @ 8:26AM

    OK So, I have just got back from China, where I was training PR professionals to shoot and edit their own content and upload it to the web for their various clients. My question now is, if you were completely new to the editing process and were shooting on an SD card cam in .mov format., Which system would you find easier to learn FCPX or FCP7? I haven’t yet used FCPX….your thoughts & comments are really very welcome..

    Thanks NFS

  • I keep thinking of those FCP promos on the Apple website with Walter Murch and Coen Brothers and the guys on “Leverage”. I bet they’re thrilled that they can fix their rolling shutter issues now or pick a cool “template” to color their show. Hahaha.

    BTW, I’m an Apple Certified Trainer and a Final Cut Studio Master Pro (was) and with this new release, I’ve decided to check out Adobe Premiere for the first time. Or switch back to Avid. My FCP days are definitely numbered.

  • Michael Clark on 06.25.11 @ 5:43PM

    Well done, well researched article on FCP X based on years of extensive FCP & Shooting experience:

    Final Cut Pro X – Negative Reviewers Failed To Clue In, June 23rd, 2011 by Kurt Lancaster

    “Reading some of the negative reviews and articles on the new release of Final Cut X makes me wonder why people don’t research before they purchase.

    Most of the negative reviewers out there — especially comments from Apple’s App store — failed to do their research. They’re surprised about such lack of features as no full version of Color, SoundTrack Pro, no compatibility with earlier versions, multicam support?

    They actually went out and purchased a totally revamped piece of software — essentially a version 1 — and expected all of these elements to be in place?

    Do your research people…”

  • Michael Clark on 06.25.11 @ 6:07PM

    Here’s another “seasoned professional” giving their well researched view in a Filmmaker magazine story:

    FCP X – FIRST MUSINGS, By David Leitner in News on Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

    “Final Cut Pro X (version 10.0) arrived 8:30 a.m. yesterday morning at the App Store for $299, unleashing torrents of criticism about missing features and a perceived drift from professional product to one that consumers might find friendlier.

    So far, so good. Let me explain…”

  • Michael Clark on 06.25.11 @ 9:19PM

    Gary Adcock’s Review: Final Cut Pro X at – June 24, 2011

    “With the release of Final Cut Pro X (FCP X), Apple has adopted a radical new approach that will dramatically change the future of non-linear video editing. FCP X is not an upgrade of Final Cut Studio, but rather an entirely new application that shares the same name.

    Despite many reservations about the new FCP X, after a thorough testing of the app, I’m cautiously on board. Here’s why….”

  • Michael Clark on 06.25.11 @ 10:43PM

    The Quarrel Over Final Cut Continues, David Pogue, New York Times

    • Great links, thanks for the updates Michael. I truncated the quotes so they’re not simply rips of the whole articles, but I definitely appreciate you posting them.

  • Michae Clark on 06.27.11 @ 1:25PM

    Thanks Koo, its amazing how much has been written about the way Apple has mishandled the FCP X release along with dropping FCP 7 and most of its associated software. Good article by Larry Jordan in his blog yesterday which came down to this conclusion which I have not heard any disagree with:

    “Apple does not ever comment on future products – though they did this year, prior to WWDC, because they needed to reset expectations. Because of the visibility of this product into an audience that can cause extensive PR damage to Apple, I suggest that Apple break its usual vow of silence and do three things:

    1. Immediately return Final Cut Studio (3) to the market. If it is not compatible with Lion (and I don’t know whether it is or not) label it so. But put it back on store shelves so consumers have the ability to work with the existing version until FCP X is ready for prime time.

    2. Fund the development of a conversion utility – either at Apple or thru a 3rd-party – and announce the development with a tentative release date.

    3. Publicly announce a road-map for FCP X that just covers the next 3-4 months. Apple needs to be in damage control mode and the best way to defuse the situation is to communicate. Answering the question: “What features will Apple add to FCP X, and when?” will go a long way to calming people down.

    I have written in my earlier blog (read it here) that FCP X has a lot of potential, and, for some, it meets their needs very nicely. I still believe that.”

  • I have just completed the ripple training DVD for fcpx and I am reluctant to say that I do like the app. It is going to be a painful transition but I think in the end I am going to love the app.

    From this article it looks like apple is going to be addressing all our gripes I just hope that they solve the legacy import issue. From the article it looks like we will not have to abandone color as there is going to be XML support, but I do hope that they will release a new version of color with all the bells and whistles needed.

    Don’t worry folks it is looking like it is going to all right on the night. Apple always seems to get it right. Think about the os9 to osx transition painful but would you go back.

  • Michael Clark on 06.30.11 @ 1:31PM

    Apple finally posted this FAQ 8 days after FCP X was released. For some reason there is no link to the FAQ from the FCP X first page:

    • FCP X may well suck for now, but Apple will have to fix the software to bring back all the functionality of previous versions. Otherwise it’ll be curtains for FCP… I edit in Avid most of the time anyway but sometimes projects arrive at our studio already in FCP and for practical reasons sometimes it makes more sense to stay in FCP. But let’s not forget that Apple is primarily a hardware company. They sell top notch hardware – iPads, iPhones, iPods, MacPro, etc… For the most part their software rocks as well. Apple is in business to sell their hardware so they invent software to push their hardware. For example, you can only sync iPods, etc. through iTunes…

      On the other hand Avid is in the business of selling top rated NLE solutions. FCP is a fantastic program, no question (or at least it was). But Avid is a fantastic *system*. Dump FCP.

  • FCP X has NO right to be called Final Cut anything- I SHOULD BE called iMovie Pro….. I’ll keep using my old FCP.

  • Patrick Ripley on 08.22.11 @ 8:18PM

    I am a film director who has used FCP since it’s introduction. I was holding off upgrading to 7.0 because I learned of the impending release of FCPX. Ten minutes after downloading and trying FCPX I called B&H and ordered FCP Studio including FCP 7. The program is an unmitigated disaster. Buggy, dumbed-down…it virtually ignores working with audio. I have completed three projects in FCPX and two of them had corruption after output. The last files I output (sorry, SHARED) to Apple Pro Res HQ played fine as QuickTime movies, worked beautifully cut into a project, but the audio slipped 16 frames when compressed. It was on a project that four other filmmakers and three editors contributed to and MINE were the only screwed-up files.
    On the upside, it is easy to use and pretty, like iMovie, when it’s not intermittently freezing or crashing altogether. Why didn’t they just call it iMovie Pro?
    I love Apple, have stickers on my car and the door of my studio, but they really stepped in it with this one.

  • looking for someone in Atlanta, ga area that does final cut pro 7. please email me. thx

  • how can you call yourself FCP if you fucking suck!

  • I bought the trial for final cut pro X and i will definitely not be buying the full version. It can’t sync my video and audio in playback for its life, the green screen feature looks ridiculous, and it keeps skipping in playback and slowing down my mac.

  • mel bell-grey on 01.10.12 @ 10:54PM

    I cannot explain my pain in using fcpx the fact you cannot reconnect media is terrible but i have created work in fcpx exported the file to quicktime and now they will not play because this was a very large project i moved some of the files, which is taking forever, it freezes it crashes it cannot handle large projects and silly me upgraded to lion ox since then things have got worse, i with i had never started using this product it is not for professional production studios

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