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February 6, 2013

Your iPad is Now a Controller for Apple Final Cut Pro X with Pixel Film Studios' ProCutX

The keyboard can certainly be a powerful and efficient control surface for non-linear editing, especially with the mastery of hot-keys and short-cuts. Despite this, some editors desire a more visually intuitive way of interfacing with their NLE. There are those that prefer specialized color-coded editing keyboards or keyboard covers, while others swear by their tactile controllers. Those can go for around $80, but what about using an infinitely configurable iPad to take the place of one of these consoles? We've already seen one iOS app capable of controlling a wide range of video software, but with a new iPad app called ProCutX, Apple editors have yet another way to turn their tablet into a Final Cut Pro X console. Check out some images and details below.

In lieu of any promotional videos, here's creator Pixel Film Studios on ProCutX, via fcp.co:

Revolutionary Video Editing Interface

Built from the ground up to meet the needs of today’s creative editors, PROCUTX breaks free from the menus and tabs to streamline editor tasks. This application gives users control over all the FCPX editing tools in one clean interface, eliminating the need for clicking and searching through the Final Cut Pro X menus. From import to export, PROCUTX can speed up every step of the FCPX editing process.

Timeline Scrubbing at Your Fingertips

Using the main PROCUTX interface dial in the center of the iPad screen, editors can scan the magnetic timeline in their project by dragging their finger around the wheel. By moving their finger around the precision dial, users can move the playhead frame-by-frame along the timeline. PROCUTX also has buttons that allow editors to move forward or backwards to the cut points between their clips.

Control Your Editing Tools

With the Toolbox in the bottom left and main timeline dial, users can make all of their edits using just PROCUTX. Editors can quickly select, cut, and trim their footage without ever touching the mouse or keyboard. They can also manipulate the speed of their video using the retiming buttons in the top-middle of the iPad screen.

Color Grade Your Footage with PROCUTX

PROCUTX eliminates the need to click through tabs in the Final Cut Pro X Inspector to color correct images. Editors can control the Color Board’s exposure, saturation, and color using the powerful directional pad in the bottom right corner of the PROCUTX application.

Streamline Importing and Sharing

Using the designated buttons in the top-right of the PROCUTX application, users can take care of all of their importing, exporting and rendering needs. The fast and easy interface allows users to accept and deliver files to and from Final Cut Pro X at the push of a button.

Near-Future plans for PROCUTX

  • Siri-like voice command capabilities
  • Multiple [in-app screens] iPad integration for separate color-grading, audio controls, effect controls
  • Social Sharing capabilities

Pixel Film Studios also dropped in to fcp.co and, along with other commenters, shed some light on how the app works. The integration with FCP is achieved through WiFi access, and enabled by an emailed link "to a preferences install that lets it connect." At least one commenter reported no noticeable lag, while at least one other claimed there was lag despite the whole process being "pretty snappy" -- a strong WiFi connection might help to alleviate latency. The app costs $25 on iTunes (down from $31 as a launch bonus), but hopefully at some point there will be a trial/demo version for those not ready to throw down their hard-earned cash. ProCutX also works with iPad Mini.

FCPX/iPad users out there, be sure to let us know of your experiences with ProCutX should you choose to give it a shot! For those of you considering but not yet convinced, Pixel Film has mentioned an upcoming video which will hopefully demonstrate ProCutX in action -- so be sure to check back over the next day or so for that update. In the mean time here's a demo from TechCentury on YouTube that goes over basic functionality:

What do you guys think, does ProCutX look like something that would be useful to your editing?

Links:

[via fcp.co and MacRumors]

Your Comment

39 Comments

pros need precision. touch screens are not precise. yet.
moving on.

February 6, 2013

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vcrd

Actually the advantage of having an external controller is to work fast and without looking away from the screen and for that you need some tactile references (Real buttons and Jogwheels) to work "blindly"!
So I really don't see any advantage of having a touch Interface where you have look at every time you have to push (or touch in this matter) a (Soft)button

February 6, 2013

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AnalogMachine

exactly. apple has made buttons an endangered species. SAVE THE BUTTONS!!!!

February 6, 2013

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vcrd

It would be cool if something like this was done for Davinci Resolve.

February 6, 2013

1
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sloooooow duuuuummmbb..over it

February 6, 2013

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Joe

No pro editor worth a damn would even consider using a gimmicky toy like this. Then again we are talking about FCPX so probably not something they had to consider ;-)

February 6, 2013

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Peter

It's not the tool that makes the editor... Every editor worth a damn should know that.

February 6, 2013

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Fernando

Exactly! I still can't wrap my head over editors who think they are better with different software. Let them edit film with a Moviola and tape and then talk software! That was the great equalizer, right? Editing takes more than software. So use whatever you want, however you want and just do a good job and stop bitching.

February 7, 2013

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MoGonzo

Haters in the house...

February 6, 2013

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chris

While I'm not totally into this, there is a big market for cheaper control surfaces, especially for color correction. The wave is still around 1.5K last time I checked- but I can buy a fully featured USB MIDI controller with tons of customizable knobs and sliders for music production for around $300, or a trackball for less than $100. Surely someone can make a USB control surface for Resolve under $400. What gives?

February 6, 2013

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ryan

lets get a kickstarter going - with the BMCC everyone and their mom's going to be working in davinci.

February 6, 2013

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alex

I'm in. Start it up

February 6, 2013

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Mr. W

I've totally thought about doing it! Unfortunately I'm not a software or hardware engineer

February 6, 2013

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ryan

I tried http://esperimentocinema.com/davinci_layout/ with my ipad and Davinci Resolve and found it very helpful and easy on the eyes. I luckily use a Tangent Wave now but this really made Resolve more manageable then just a mouse. Worth a look!

February 6, 2013

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You mean something like these:

http://www.piengineering.com/xkeys.php

The question is if Resolve can handle generic controllers.

February 7, 2013

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Thomas

Something like that, but you need trackballs and sliders methinks

February 7, 2013

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ryan

I find all the hate on here pretty humorous. It's a first generation product, people. Relax. No one is saying this exact product will be adopted by every editor within 6 months.

But a few iterations down the road - don't be shocked when you'd be laughed at for still using an antiquated keyboard and mouse to use an NLE.

February 6, 2013

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Swested

Guys I've got a little problem, actually it's my memory :)

there was a similar app which was showed here sometime ago, it could control premier pro or fcp and it had nice option as three way color correction and it also work on da vinci :)

asian guy was in the movie and it also was his idea (brilliant if you ask me)

could you guys remember what was the name of the app ?

sorry for my english :)

regards, Albert

February 6, 2013

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Albert

albert, the program was called CTRL + Console and was a kickstarter project by jeff chow.
now he has to move fast, but still his project is supposed to feature more..(lightroom, premiere, audition etc)
i would like to check out both and compare. so a demo would be helpful.
"PRO" tool or not. just a different way for some of us. use it or leave it. :)

here´s the link to the NFS article:
http://nofilmschool.com/2012/11/ctrl-console-app-ipad-editing-console/

February 6, 2013

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jonte

thanks jonte! :)

yeah, comparing those two is good idea :)

I think having such nice think like controller (even if this is ios/android app) can make your work faster :) or slower if you can't you use it properly :D

regards, Albert

February 7, 2013

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Albert

For roughly the same price of an ipad + that app you can get a used tangent wave which is an actual professional tool

February 6, 2013

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john jeffreys

Well duh... But most of us have an iPad already.

February 7, 2013

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People said the same things about Apple Computers and the Mouse and GUI, iTunes, the iPod, iPhone, iPad etc. how many times do people have to be WRONG before they learn to just shut up and not prove how stunted their thinking is? Is this product guaranteed to be a success? NO. But the fact that there is such a huge amount of uses for iPad and iPhone proves that sometimes these things do fit the needs of a large number of people.

Usually the low cost allows people to test it for themselves with minimal risk.

February 6, 2013

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Trace

The keyboard and mouse are far from the most intuitive interfaces devised. I'm constantly in search of ways to work more naturally and efficiently (hence I use a ShuttlePRO and Wacom tablet). The tablet, with its configurable screen, is an interesting possibility...

This iteration is not the ultimate, but it may be a step in the right direction. Be interesting to watch this concept develop.

February 6, 2013

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PS when tablets get haptic, look out.

February 6, 2013

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I think is a neat idea but would be a pain in the butt. Without real buttons to feel with your fingers, you'd have to be constantly looking at the iPad and not the screen.

February 6, 2013

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David

What apple need to do is figure out some way to make the touch screen tactile... some sort of electro-static sensation or something...

February 7, 2013

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Brynn

I don't really understand how this works based on the article. Is it something one would use in conjunction with the program being open? If so, why bother?

I like the idea of a precise scrub wheel, but aside from that, why not just use your own hotkey setup while in FCP? Granted, these questions come from ignorance because I've never had to use an external controller in my personal or professional projects.

February 7, 2013

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DIYFilmSchool.net

Here is something I don't get?
"PROCUTX breaks free from the menus and tabs"

This app is for a video editing program, that has prided its self for having the simplest visual interface in the industry? Selling point negated :(

February 7, 2013

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David Sharp

"What apple need to do is figure out some way to make the touch screen tactile… some sort of electro-static sensation or something…"

"Tactus" is doing it: http://www.brightsideofnews.com/news/2013/1/14/tactus-shows-us-their-tac...

Who can possibly deny that this is going to be the future for supplementary consoles (editing or otherwise). This is just an early version of what is to come.

February 7, 2013

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The Magic Mouse with FCPX works basically the same way. It's touch based. Sure tech will get better with touch screens since the industry is moving that way.

I think this is neat. Worth hearing more about it. Also shows how developers have a market to sell and create options, plugins, apps, themes, graphic templates without having to sit back and wait for Apple to do something about it.

If users of software like this continue to create alternatives to help workflow in ingenious new ways, what more could you ask for! Exciting times

February 7, 2013

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MoGonzo

It will be interesting if Apple can make their magic mouse better to use, because for dudes with big hands like me it is a pain. I tried it and I thought the touchpanel on the mouse was a neat thing, but the magic mouse is much too small and slim for me to work with it. I was getting cramps in my hand after a few hours working with it, no joke.
And then also because of the touch panel on top of the mouse, it can't move as easily as other mice, so moving it around the pad is really tiresome. Plus the bluetooth connection sometimes wasn't the most precise to my Mac Pro.

Alltogether I decided I can't work with the magic mouse and got a logitech performance mx instead.
I did kind of miss the touch pad though, so I bought the magic touch pad in addition which is now left of my keyboard. You can never have enough controllers and buttons! ;)

So the iPad as an additional touch pad sounds like a good idea to me. Although it is only a good option if you already have an ipad, otherwise this solution is a bit expensive.

February 8, 2013

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Heiko

I hate the magic mouse. I bought a logitech wireless MX and its much more responsive. I definitely prefer a tactile scroll wheel

February 8, 2013

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ryan

I'm still waiting for this day! Maybe somebody can "hack" a usb audio controller.. like a traktor. .

February 7, 2013

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Marcus

Definitely an interesting idea! Your comment made me think of the Mojo controller (store/video) that Moldover (Controllerism pioneer) developed and then open-sourced (scroll down to 'Making of the Mojo' for details). Conceivably you could tell the thing to control whatever you wanted it to, though this particular design may not make any sense for editing.

February 7, 2013

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avatar
Dave Kendricken
Writer
Freelancer

I agree that it is not really a professional controller, because it is a touch screen that you can't use without looking at it first.
But then it is really inexpensive and if you already have an iPad - why not? Certainly better than only a mouse and keyboard, it never hurts to have a few more configurable buttons and sliders.

For 25$ I'd buy it immediately if I had an iPad and was using FCPX. Which I might actually do in the near future (just about to learn the basics of FCPX)

February 8, 2013

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Heiko

I would kill for a version of this for Resolve with control of 3 parameters at once in real time.

April 1, 2013

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August 20, 2014

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