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Author Topic: Is FCP X loveworthy yet?  (Read 2077 times)
Chris Sanderson
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« on: January 22, 2014, 08:27:28 AM »
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A little update on the issue of Media Management in FCP X.

I have been backing up and archiving completed projects in the past few days and want to pass on my observations on the new FCP X 10.1 (this does NOT apply to FCP X 10.09 and earlier!)

In short FCP X 10.1 is a breath of fresh air compared to all the hassles of missing media from the FCP 7 days when so often I would go back to make an adjustment or re-export a revised ProRes and find that there was one piece (often more) missing - generally a photograph or a graphic or a piece of AE output or a track from STP - in other words, something non-original-video related. That has now changed.

FCP X 10.1 allows an editor to pare down a project to its bare essentials and archive it in one file! All of the necessary media pieces and edits that allow you to recreate a master, refine an edit or output a different master. This piece of intelligence is called the Library. A Library is really a super-folder seen as one file in the Finder but actually contains hundreds of files and folders.

(BTW Carbon Copy Cloner is intelligent and only backs up individual changed files within a Library - this smart behaviour makes it the best backup/archive program out there IMO)

In FCP X 10.1, one can consolidate files into or out of a Library. This means that all files can be located inside an existing Library or outside in a new one. There are some important but easily accomplished space-saving tactics to employ.

The first is to get rid of all render files. This sounds drastic but is quite simple since everything can be re-generated from the contained original media should the project need them again.

The second is slightly more complex (and something that a future update will hopefully make simpler): delete all Transcoded media. Since FCPX does not see Proxy or HighQuality transcoded media as a render, this transcoded media remains inside the Library after deleting renders. This hugely increases the project's size. However the package contents of the Library are easily revealed and with FCPX shut down, the transcoded media can be safely trashed. This reduces the size of a Library enormously. When the project is next opened, FCP will not find the Transcoded media and will simply start to re-build it. An important assumption here is that FCPX's Preferences have not been changed.

Once the Library is pared down using these two steps, it can be copied off to a different drive, renamed 'Project_ARCHIVE' and put on the shelf.

And what about all those pesky audio, graphic, photo, AE renders etc? Well if you consolidate the Library, all of those files will be there. The only possible fly in the ointment is if one needs to go back into a different app to make a change there before revising a FCPX project. Other apps require additional strategies for backup & archive. Motion templates must be individually saved. Similarly an After Effects project's Dependencies need to be checked and the files 'collected' to an archive folder.

Is X Loveworthy yet?  Cheesy  - maybe, maybe not - but to me it shows every sign of getting there.
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Christopher Sanderson
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fredjeang2
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« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2014, 04:10:43 PM »
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Chris, thanks for covering the media management area included the consolidation because it's indeed a key point
and actually very rarely debated.
And if FCPX is worthy? Of course!

But to be really honest, yeah they got something different and more cleverly implanted in some way, but in the end it is still  
the old rusty way: fragmentation.
What I mean by that is that FCPX is basicaly an editor, more intuitively implemented, more cleverly designed, maybe, but still a NLE
in essence. And that my friend, is what I call the "old rusty way".
I'm very conscious of what can be acheived in terms of CG and even a few compositing tasks (although in that aspect not as
featured as Avid MC) and FCPX is quite impressive in some ways. But the color interface is not Resolve and the compo capability is not Nuke
or AE either.

What I think is really loveworthy in 2014 (yes...2014) is a real all-in-one App. To date there are only 2 options: Avid DS and Autodesk Smoke. That is a real scandal.
Avid DS is in the end of its life so in fact there is only one real super app.

Why is it so important IMO? Because fragmentation means roundtrippings, tons of roundtripping. Media management is certainly an extremely important
area, but only one of the holy mess we are in.
Fragmentation means: 1)the need of learning at least 3 softwares, 2)the need to update those softwares, 3)huge time consummer, 4)unstability (manipulations from
softs to sfts are prone to hassles), 5)compatibility issues between softwares.

IMO, whatever that is not all-in-one super App in today's panorama is not, what's the Word? loveworthy enough-. Apple, Avid, Edius, Lightworks, Adobe, all the same in the end.

Nothing more annoying (to be polite) that when I press the "color correction" button, I don't see the entire software switching to CC mode, but no...pop-ups, where-is-resolve, opening, closing, opening...
Or to roto with fades and being able to track not only manually but also to track the moving objects so the mask will follow the shape change automatically (a man walking for ex), and for that, where the f...k is Nuke?
And then,
talking about media management, it's also key that media management could also be top within the editing task itself to be able for ex to link and re-link to different medias different parts of the editing without the need of touching the timeline once. That is particularly important with RED because thanks to the RMD structure where the metadatas are stored.
I may want to step into an edit to be able to work on layers (like I'd do with PS) independently of the rest of the editing. And Bingo! if, into this step-in I want to roto something complex I have to 1) do a render, 2) send it to Nuke, 3) render from Nuke 4) reimport to the editor. And no need to say that if I need to finetune what's been done outside the App, I need to re-do the roundtrip over and over again. Same sort of saga with a CC that requires Resolve. That is insane!
When I see how easy those things can be done within Smoke, really saving a huge amount of time and done within a high-end interface that could rival with Nasa mission control: That seems to me 2014.

There is nothing more irritating than those roundtrippins for a yes or a no, regardless how worth are the software involved.

My point is that the brain of FCPX is really good but they miss the big point: all-in-one. In fact, they all missed the big point except Autodesk. (adobe being a weired case in itself with its DL but frankly: how painfull are PP and AE!)

But where I join you is that if there are not complex CG and Compo in the air, FCPX is certainly a great bet for 70% of the tasks we will ever need to acheive.


Cheers.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2014, 05:51:49 PM by fredjeang2 » Logged
Chris Sanderson
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« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2014, 06:50:14 PM »
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...There is nothing more irritating than those roundtrippins for a yes or a no, regardless how worth are the software involved.
Agree 100%

My point is that the brain of FCPX is really good but they miss the big point: all-in-one. In fact, they all missed the big point except Autodesk. (adobe being a weired case in itself with its DL but frankly: how painfull are PP and AE!)...
Careful the FCP X engineers may be listening! - I hope. My hope & guess is that an all-in-one app, though years to be in the making, is in fact in the planning
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Christopher Sanderson
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« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2014, 06:54:34 PM »
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I just FCPX for the first time recently to do a 30 spot. Had basically no idea wtf I was doing lolz but I got it done. I kept making mistakes, doing things I didn't want to do etc.

BUT - when it came to the actual editing, once I got the hang of it, it went really quickly. I would say significantly quicker than FCP7. The faffing was the time sink, but the actual cutting etc was really easy and quick.
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bcooter
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« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2014, 12:05:04 AM »
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My hope & guess is that an all-in-one app, though years to be in the making, is in fact in the planning

I just hope they go to 32 bit on fcp 8, with a real on the timeline color suite.  (I know this won't happen) but if they did they'd sell 10,000 of them in ten minutes, which would move apple's bottom line .000001%.

It would move mine a lot further.

IMO

BC

P.S.  For everyone that thinks fcpx is easier, last November I had a chinese client in our London space to help craft a story that we shot all in Chinese dialog.

I loaded two computers, one with fcpx with all the clips, one with fcp 7.

I showed her how to drag and drop, set in and out points of the clips and let her go.  On FCP X she said I don't like it.   We moved to 7 I did the same thing and in 10 minutes she was doing the base cut.

Now this wasn't a real edit, it was just to base out the story, but point is having the two windows, being able to park footage on different timelines made sense.

Being able to copy and paste to new sequences made even more sense, so though I am very bias towards the workings of fcp 7, I think it's a lot more intuitive than X, but once again I am biased.

« Last Edit: March 08, 2014, 12:10:26 AM by bcooter » Logged

Chris Sanderson
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« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2014, 01:19:44 PM »
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...I think it's a lot more intuitive than X, but once again I am biased.

For anyone who has worked on Premiere , FCP7 (even Avid), FCP 7 is definitely more intuitive than the deeply foreign land of X.

You have to throw out all of that accumulated knowledge and start over with FCP X.

But once you do, the productivity reward is huge.
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Christopher Sanderson
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« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2014, 03:12:18 PM »
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A colleague who is a big fan of FCPX gave me a tutorial on it a short while back [on 10.08] and there were lots of 'about time that was implemented moments' from me and some impressive functionality to be seen. But on the other hand, some basic aspects were so unobvious in how they could be done it was painful. And somethings were still not there. Though I forget which now.
I did a project with a trial of 10.8 and although I liked some aspects very much, other things were still too lacking for me. It still did not feel professional enough would be my summation.

Though may give it another try and see how the new tweaks improve things. Smiley
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« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2014, 06:04:20 AM »
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Been perusing the new features.
I like snapshots and this addresses one of the issues I previously had...
"You can now fade individual audio components: the fade handles that were previously available only on the collapsed audio clip are now available on each individual channel"
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bcooter
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« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2014, 06:20:34 AM »
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For anyone who has worked on Premiere , FCP7 (even Avid), FCP 7 is definitely more intuitive than the deeply foreign land of X.

You have to throw out all of that accumulated knowledge and start over with FCP X.

But once you do, the productivity reward is huge.

Your probably right, but out of all the software, electronic interfaces I've crammed into my head, fcp X is the most backward confusing thing I've tried.

Every editor I know just screams about it and not in a good way.

I'm sure it's fast, so is a 900 HP Kia that you drive from the backseat using mirrors to steer.

But it ain't fun.

I really think they should have just broken the mold entirely and came up with all of their own names.  Transitions could be called feet, sequences could be called potatoes, projects  . . .


IMO

BC
« Last Edit: March 10, 2014, 06:23:06 AM by bcooter » Logged

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« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2014, 06:29:54 AM »
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Your probably right, but out of all the software, electronic interfaces I've crammed into my head, fcp X is the most backward confusing thing I've tried.

Every editor I know just screams about it and not in a good way.
If you can get someone who knows it [and is a good teacher] then it isn't backwards at all, simply different.
Avid now that has a pointlessly difficult interface, but people are so used to it they do not notice anymore.

FCPX suits certain work very well, not so sure about long form drama though and still has flaws, but then what editor doesn't. Premiere is still mind numbingly stupid in places after all this time. I found Vegas easier to use 10 years ago and have noticed that the reason Premiere is as good as it is now is because it has copied a lot of lot of Vegas's cleverness. Shame it's not on the Mac. Sad
« Last Edit: March 10, 2014, 06:41:46 AM by jjj » Logged

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« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2014, 12:52:37 AM »
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Not sure how to delete rendered files on 10.1, yet on 10.9, you right click on either or the project or media folder( bin?) and choose delete render files, used or all. Transcoded media is separate, and once a film project finished can be deleted if you don't want to redo it later. Exporting the used media, already transcoded will assure you have the transcoded media with the project, then you can delete all other unused transcoded media. The move and duplicate actions in FCPX to me are not always sure. More often than not, even though the operation shows finished indeed it takes way longer in the background. Leave it run for a long time after, and then it has worked most of the time, exporting ( move or duplicate) with the files according to selected options.

I don't have much experience yet, but can say after making some films in PP, and FCPX, I've now chosen FCPX as it is much simpler to use once you get the hang of the very different UI. PP is likely fine but on an old MAc it sometimes takes forever for what FCPX on the same machine just flies.
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John S C
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« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2014, 01:49:46 PM »
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Neil

Check out MacBreak Studio for last week. They have a video on archiving and it included info on deleting render files. It may help

John C
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