Apple demonstrates Final Cut Pro X, cuts price

Following months of rumours, Apple today unveiled a redesigned version of its professional video editing software, Final Cut Pro. Essentially rebuilt from the ground up, Final Cut Pro X marks the software's jump to Cocoa, bringing with it 64-bit support for working on very large projects. Utilising core technologies introduced in Snow Leopard such as Grand Central Dispatch, Final Cut Pro X is able to take advantage of multicore systems to improve performance.

Apple has asked for feedback on FCPX from industry professionals, and so the workflow has been improved with the user in mind. There is no longer a need to wait for the ingest process to complete before working, and during the process clips can be automatically stabilised and cleaned up. Building on the Faces feature from iPhoto, FCPX is able to detect people and shot types. Range-based keywording, eliminating the need for splitting a clip up for separate keyword groups, combines with shot and people detection to create Smart Collections. Users can base Smart Collections on how many people are in a shot, media type, the framing of a shot, and many other options.

The new version of Final Cut Pro brings with it a wide range of new features, such as a magnetic timeline and localised image adjustments. The interface is notably similar to iMovie, but quotes from professionals indicate a simplified interface is the least of their worries. "Editors just want to make great cuts and Final Cut Pro X makes that easy," writes Scott Ivers. Dan Devlin of Electric Entertainment was equally positive, adding "This program represents the beginning of a new era in digital editing."

Final Cut Pro X will be available from the Mac App Store in June for $299.

Image credit: Loop Insight

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Magnetic timeline, x64 multi-core processing, very large project support...Adobe Premiere has been doing this for a while now. Apple is late to the game.
I do really like the User Interface, that's the only thing that +1 on Adobe.

I think the part that worries me the most is distributing it through the App Store. Not only is this software quite hefty on its own. The way the App Store works is both major and minor updates require re-downloading the complete package again. Not a big deal on IOS since most apps are small, but when we're looking at 10GB+ Thats really going to **** off people with internet caps and just the fact updates will take exponentially longer to apply.

Xero said,
I think the part that worries me the most is distributing it through the App Store. Not only is this software quite hefty on its own. The way the App Store works is both major and minor updates require re-downloading the complete package again. Not a big deal on IOS since most apps are small, but when we're looking at 10GB+ Thats really going to **** off people with internet caps and just the fact updates will take exponentially longer to apply.

Now that they're moving a lot of things there maybe they'll create a proper update mechanism. I doubt it though as we still have to download the massive itunes installers everytime that gets a minor update.

$299 is still too much for me. I guess for my needs, iMovie works just fine. A good Windows alternative that doesn't break the bank is Sony Vegas.

Unfortunately Premiere is just difficult to work with, especially coming from FCP. There are very simple things that Premiere makes complicated (i.e. audio transitions, linking, etc.). It's a pain to work with.

This is the only software I would consider getting from Apple, if it was released on Windows. Although - more alternatives (free too!) are starting to take shape, such as Lightworks

Adobe Premier Pro CS5.5 was announced yesterday btw, adds better hardware acceleration, more cameras supported etc, i bet they will reduce their price to compete with apple now.

This is win. It's a great way to get more people onto OS X.

Why port it to Windows if 1) no one can say anything positive about Safari or iTunes on Windows, 2) they know their own software and hardware so well and 3) it's another reason for someone to make the switch. At $299 it's a steal for a fully-featured movie editor, especially when you compare it to Premiere Pro which is something like $799. Apple getting back at Adobe too, perhaps? Regardless it's far more affordable for amateurs who, if they start on Mac, will continue with Mac.

what said,
This is win. It's a great way to get more people onto OS X.

Why port it to Windows if 1) no one can say anything positive about Safari or iTunes on Windows, 2) they know their own software and hardware so well and 3) it's another reason for someone to make the switch. At $299 it's a steal for a fully-featured movie editor, especially when you compare it to Premiere Pro which is something like $799. Apple getting back at Adobe too, perhaps? Regardless it's far more affordable for amateurs who, if they start on Mac, will continue with Mac.

I actually quite like safari for windows, I would like iTunes if it responded to clicks.

I don't have any problems with iTunes on windows, it never crashes and is always responsive. I have a large music library too so I don't know where it goes wrong for everyone else.

_DP said,
I don't have any problems with iTunes on windows, it never crashes and is always responsive. I have a large music library too so I don't know where it goes wrong for everyone else.

+1. iTunes for Windows gets a bad rap. It isn't as bad as some over-dramatic forum crawlers make it out to be.

Shadrack said,

+1. iTunes for Windows gets a bad rap. It isn't as bad as some over-dramatic forum crawlers make it out to be.

It is pretty bad though. I use an iMac as my main machine nowadays (and iTunes), but a year ago I would be on Windows and I'd only use iTunes to sync devices and I'd use something else to actually manage/play my music..

DomZ said,

It is pretty bad though. I use an iMac as my main machine nowadays (and iTunes), but a year ago I would be on Windows and I'd only use iTunes to sync devices and I'd use something else to actually manage/play my music..

No... I actually like using iTunes as my main audio player and library. I don't even have an apple device for playing music. I just like iTunes, never have a problem with it...

This is pretty much a huge FU to Avid, especially since they offered a huge discount for anyone that traded in FCP. That price tag is going to hurt a lot of companies. It's what made FCP big in the first place, it's price! Sorry, but i can't see Avid making any ground on Apple anymore.

saxondale. said,
This is pretty much a huge FU to Avid, especially since they offered a huge discount for anyone that traded in FCP. That price tag is going to hurt a lot of companies. It's what made FCP big in the first place, it's price! Sorry, but i can't see Avid making any ground on Apple anymore.

I think it comes down to more of a competition between Adobe Premiere and Final Cut Pro. Avid is still a competitor, but its the big film companies that use it religiously

DomZ said,
Does the fact they've re-wrote this from the ground up give some hope of a Cocoa version of iTunes soon?
All hope is lost for iTunes

DomZ said,
Does the fact they've re-wrote this from the ground up give some hope of a Cocoa version of iTunes soon?

I'd be suprised if they did, however i doubt it

They need to do something with it. It's a good media manager and i do like using it, however it would really be A+++ in my books if they could make it more multithreaded, i.e. when syncing i wish it didn't sometimes tie up the whole iTunes UI (using iTunes on a Mac). 64bit etc.. doesn't bother me as iTunes doesn't get close to using more than 1GB let alone 4GB and i doubt it would benefit from the extra registers either.

Just multi-multi-multi thread the damn thing Apple!

DomZ said,
Does the fact they've re-wrote this from the ground up give some hope of a Cocoa version of iTunes soon?

The problem with iTunes is that it has to work on Windows too. Apple probably don't want to have to port the whole of Cocoa and all that Objective C stuff to Windows just to get iTunes working. And they probably don't want to have to maintain two totally separate versions of it.

So, they'll probably just stick with the portable C++/Carbon-based abomination that we currently have.

FunkTrooper said,

The problem with iTunes is that it has to work on Windows too. Apple probably don't want to have to port the whole of Cocoa and all that Objective C stuff to Windows just to get iTunes working. And they probably don't want to have to maintain two totally separate versions of it.

So, they'll probably just stick with the portable C++/Carbon-based abomination that we currently have.

Seeing as the iOS devices are the future of Apple, and downloadable/streaming content is also in everyones future - I'm hoping they will bite the bullet and do something with it

FunkTrooper said,

The problem with iTunes is that it has to work on Windows too. Apple probably don't want to have to port the whole of Cocoa and all that Objective C stuff to Windows just to get iTunes working. And they probably don't want to have to maintain two totally separate versions of it.

So, they'll probably just stick with the portable C++/Carbon-based abomination that we currently have.


Isn't Safari Cocoa?

I hate to sound like a troll, but wouldn't it be great if Apple ported their professional software (like Final Cut Pro, and Logic Pro) over to Windows like they did with Safari? I love using Logic Pro in college and at the moment, it's my favourite music editing software, but I don't want to go to all the trouble of building a Hackintosh just to use it at home.

MightyJordan said,
I hate to sound like a troll, but wouldn't it be great if Apple ported their professional software (like Final Cut Pro, and Logic Pro) over to Windows like they did with Safari? I love using Logic Pro in college and at the moment, it's my favourite music editing software, but I don't want to go to all the trouble of building a Hackintosh just to use it at home.

A lot of the hardware sales are because of this reason so it's not going to happen anytime soon

MightyJordan said,
I hate to sound like a troll, but wouldn't it be great if Apple ported their professional software (like Final Cut Pro, and Logic Pro) over to Windows like they did with Safari? I love using Logic Pro in college and at the moment, it's my favourite music editing software, but I don't want to go to all the trouble of building a Hackintosh just to use it at home.

Apple are, at their core, a hardware company. Their software just facilitates their hardware.

MightyJordan said,
I hate to sound like a troll, but wouldn't it be great if Apple ported their professional software (like Final Cut Pro, and Logic Pro) over to Windows like they did with Safari? I love using Logic Pro in college and at the moment, it's my favourite music editing software, but I don't want to go to all the trouble of building a Hackintosh just to use it at home.

They wouldn't have to with Logic Pro. They killed the Windows version of it when they bought it out. I'm guessing the assets are still floating around somewhere.

MightyJordan said,
I hate to sound like a troll, but wouldn't it be great if Apple ported their professional software (like Final Cut Pro, and Logic Pro) over to Windows like they did with Safari? I love using Logic Pro in college and at the moment, it's my favourite music editing software, but I don't want to go to all the trouble of building a Hackintosh just to use it at home.

Then don't go to the trouble of building a hackintosh and just buy a Macintosh - I mean, come on, it isn't as though Mac's are expensive and use weird proprietary hardware like they did 15 years ago!

Mr Nom Nom's said,

Then don't go to the trouble of building a hackintosh and just buy a Macintosh - I mean, come on, it isn't as though Mac's are expensive and use weird proprietary hardware like they did 15 years ago!

Nope, they still are expensive. The cheapest Mac you can buy is the http://store.apple.com/uk/brow...ly/mac_mini?mco=MTAyNTQzNjA Mac Mini, and that starts out at £612 and uses a processor from two generations ago, only 2GB of RAM, a tiny 320GB hard drive, and very low-end graphics. I can buy and build a top-notch gaming machine today for just over £500!

In fact, I might end up doing that. I'm planning to have two hard drives in my new build; might as well add in a third and stick Snow Leopard on there.

Edited by MightyJordan, Apr 13 2011, 12:19pm :

MightyJordan said,
I hate to sound like a troll, but wouldn't it be great if Apple ported their professional software (like Final Cut Pro, and Logic Pro) over to Windows like they did with Safari? I love using Logic Pro in college and at the moment, it's my favourite music editing software, but I don't want to go to all the trouble of building a Hackintosh just to use it at home.

This rings true more than ever, this software used to cost a lot lot more, now being released for only $299 as others have pointed out is a way in which to attract people to the Mac platform. The same for Aperture, now it's going for a song where it used to be £219 and lightroom is about £200 ( off the top of my head), it'll make it easier for people to justify moving/stick to the mac platform, i.e. the iMac is $1000 (odd im not sure the US price) + $299 FCP on the PC is might be $600/700 + CS5 Studio $700 etc..

Also when Mr Nom Nom mentions that it's not that expensive i don't think he means in a direct comparison or that they are dearer which we all know they are, he means they are more affordable than they were. £1000 for an iMac which is a powerful machine is not unobtainable to a lot of people, yes you can get a PC for a lot less but again it's a lot better than £3000 odd they were during the 90's

Personally I love the iMac for its small footprint and whatnot. I have yet to see another company offer a similar specced all-in-one as my 27-inch iMac for less money. In fact I don't think there are any other companies that offer a 27-inch all-in-one with high-res ISP panel and aluminum design.