FCPX - First Impressions

Yes, it looks like iMovie. Yes, it functions a lot like iMovie. No, this is not iMovie Pro.

The newest version of Final Cut Pro was finally released today, and after many questions about what I think of it, I figured I'd write up a few quick thoughts here. 

INTERFACE

First thing to notice is that the entire interface has be consolidated into one window. The good news about this is you don't have 7 different windows popping up and moving all over the place. The bad news is you have less customization over the layout. In fact, if you edit with two screens, you only have the option of either having the full Viewer on the second display, or having the media library on the second display. Depending on how you work this would be very frustrating.

And yes, it's very pretty.

THE TECHNICAL

If you're thinking of using FCPX as a professional business tool anytime soon, you'd best rethink your plan. While this software would be perfectly satisfactory if you were simply running a birthday/wedding video enterprise, for anyone out there seriosuly working in the professional video world, this just ain't gonna cut it. Gone are some key import/export features that sadly render this software almost completely useless if you have any serious work to do. 

THE CREATIVE

However despite all the technical limitations, within one hour of using the software I can safely say that actually editing with FCPX is an absolute joy.

As a test, I took a small film project I was currently working on in FCP7 and started again in FCPX. Sure I was just recreating the edit I had previously done, but it was easy and quick to accomplish. More importantly, I was able to make creative changes so quickly that I completely forgot about how I would have done the same edit in FCP7. There were a few occasions where I had to look up how to do a simple task that I could have done in the old software while blindfolded, but I'm fine with learning the new way to do things if it makes things easier, and in this case, it has.

 

Now I'm not going to wrap this up with any sort of conclusion; I need more time to come to that. A more detailed post will be forthcoming, once I've had a few days to play with it.

If you have any specific questions about FCPX and how it works, leave them in the comments below and I'll try to answer them as best I can.

Jeremy Klassenediting, fcp, fcpx