Streamlined Collaboration – Easily share your creative work by passing libraries between editors, assistants, and high-end sound and color finishing. Each library can contain source media, edited projects, or both.
Flexible Organization – Save libraries and import camera files to any system directory. You can choose to keep original, optimized, proxy, and rendered media within the library bundle or place them in an external folder to simplify multiuser workflows. Additional Features High dynamic range video – Record video with high dynamic range on some of the most popular professional video cameras, then apply a real-time preset to adjust the look of the image to match broadcast specifications Rec.
A visual countdown allows you to start recording precisely on time. And multiple takes can be automatically added to an Audition clip so you can quickly choose the best version while looping playback. Multicam controls – Add just the audio or video portion of a Multicam Clip to the timeline. You can also detach audio from Multicam Clips in the timeline to manipulate audio and video separately. Project Snapshots – Instantly capture the state of any project for fast versioning.
With each Snapshot, Final Cut Pro also creates static Compound and Multicam clips to avoid accidental changes to the Snapshot as you continue editing. Enhanced retiming – Add precise retime speeds by entering them numerically in the Custom Speed window as percentage or duration. Choose to ripple or maintain length when adding a retime effect, and use the Replace with Retime to Fit command to swap clips while retaining the original timeline length.
Intelligent Stabilization – A new stabilization engine analyzes footage for dominant motion characteristics and automatically applies the correct algorithm. Another workflow capability is support for Apple Xsan storage, with file locking so team members don’t trip on each other’s work.
Premiere Pro, on the other hand, offers a bit more in the way of collaboration options with its Team Projects via Adobe Creative Cloud, which offers simultaneous editing with conflict resolution features.
In addition to its automatic clip-organization options, Final Cut Pro X includes manual keyword tagging. Much like a good photo workflow app, Final Cut Pro X makes entering frequently used tags simple—you can even use keyboard shortcuts. Tagging in Final Cut Pro X still isn’t as sophisticated as the keywording feature in Adobe Lightroom, but Premiere can only use tags through the separate Adobe Bridge manager though it does offer lots of metadata and face detection. One very cool keyword tagging option in Final Cut is that you can apply a tag to just part of a clip.
You can also star, rate, or reject a clip from icons below the source tray. I’m always surprised at how many video editing apps lack this basic metadata capability.
Interface The interface sports a consistent dark gray that makes the content you’re editing the most prominent thing on the screen. You can also create your own custom workspace layouts. You can’t, however, undock panels to make them float free , as you can in Premiere Pro. While the Final Cut Pro X timeline looks something like that of iMovie, with its free-form, trackless Magnetic Timeline view, the pro program packs vastly more editing power.
As with pretty much every video editing app, Final Cut Pro X presents the standard three-pane view, with source clips on the top left, preview on the top right, and timeline across the bottom. A timecode indicator appears below the preview window, along with an indicator of rendering percent complete. You can full-screen the preview and resize any panel, but you can’t pull panels off into separate windows Corel VideoStudio Pro and Premiere Pro let you do this.
You get Undo and Redo in Final Cut, but Premiere Pro’s history window offers more in the way of letting you get back to any point in your editing process. There are no track numbers along the left edge; Final Cut Pro X calls tracks lanes, and you can add as many of these as you like. I should note that Final Cut still makes excellent use of keyboard shortcuts, such as for changing back and forth among the trim, select, blade, and range selection functions.
You can display an on-screen keyboard showing them all, and edit key functions to taste. Adding clips to the Magnetic Timeline is a simple dragging operation, and your dropped clip snaps to neighbor clips or the start you can use a Position cursor tool.
If you’re attentive, you’ll notice a small hairline connects the clip you enter with the first clip you added. This Clip Connection means that whenever you move the main clip, the one added after will stay in the same relative position on the timeline.
But if you drag a clip so that it overlaps another, that second clip scoots out of its way, dropping down to create a new overlapping lane beneath it.
Roles define what clips are for—it could be video, titles, dialog, music, and effects. But the power of this comes when you create your own custom sub-roles , such as effects, dialogue, background, or B-roll.
Clear color-coding of these roles means you can use the default colors or choose from a tasteful palette of a dozen colors to assign your own. Not only do these colors show up on the on-screen timeline, but also on the Touch Bar’s mini timeline view, helping you see what kind of tracks are playing. It’s great organizational tool. The last is very useful for this kind of content: It lets you remove the camera rig from your production with a cloned area usually the ground. Because VR captures everything in every direction, the camera itself is not excluded, but often undesired in the final product.
I tested with footage from a Nikon KeyMission and a Samsung Gear with no problems and snappy response. A couple things it doesn’t do with , however, that CyberLink PowerDirector does, are stabilization and motion tracking.
Effects you can use on degree content include variations of Blur, Glow, and Sharpen. When you’re done editing, you can directly share to the biggest outlets for VR content these days: Facebook, YouTube, and Vimeo. Each of those has specific requirements that the program handles. Editing Video on the Timeline Final Cut offers precise, intuitive, and powerful tools for arranging and trimming clips.
Trimming and splitting can be done in the timeline or right in the clip’s iMovie-style source entry. You can easily mark any selections on a clip as Favorite, for later use. Double-clicking a clip brings up the Precision Editor. You can trim either end with a simple click-and-drag, and, if you change your mind, the trimmed-away part of the clip will still be there if you later drag back the other way. A Blade tool does what makes sense for a tool with that name: It splits the clip in two at the edit point.
I also like the Region Selection tool, which lets you mark in and out points to select part of a clip, which you can remove or edit further. I do, however, miss PowerDirector’s multi-trim tool, which lets you mark multiple in and out points to remove undesirable bits in the middle of a clip in a simpler process.
Still, Final Cut Pro X does let you do this kind of multiple sub-clip selection in the source panel. It also lets you easily make ripple , trim, roll, slip, and slide edits. The edits are nondestructive, and you can always restore a part of a clip after you trim it. One of Final Cut Pro X’s key features, Compound Clips, lets you group together clips, audio, and effects so that you can move them as a unit and everything will stay in sync. This really unclutters the timeline, by showing just a single clip for the compound.
You can easily expand the Compound clip at any time for further tweaking, separating it into its component elements—nothing is permanently flattened or joined in the compounding process. It’s a handy way to deal with complex combinations of elements. Another clever innovation that lets you save space on the timeline is Auditions. When you drag a new clip on top of one already in the timeline, you get the option of adding it as an Audition.
Think of it this way: Say you shot five takes for an opening scene for your wedding video. This little Auditions viewer lets you create a simple way to line up comparisons of all your choices. Just open the Audition window, select a track, and then play the overall video with the auditioning clip in place. Change clips and repeat until you see which one works better with your overall production. It’s very cool. Effects Once your clips are all in place, you can fine-tune and bling them with Final Cut’s rich collection of color tools, transitions, effects, and text tools.
For starters, you get customizable video effects and audio effects. Quite a few third-party plug-ins are also now available for Final Cut. Once installed, it looks just like part of the program, with its choices appearing in the Effects panel, rather than requiring its own window as some plug-in interfaces in other products do.
Final Cut comes with over transitions of its own, and the ability to search by transition name is helpful, given how many choices there are. Adding the most commonly needed type, cross-dissolve—can be done with a keyboard shortcut. Transitions are easy to add—instead of having to create a secondary story line yourself, there’s a one-step transition insertion for connected clips. Both effects and transitions are of high quality. You can set default video and audio effects that you can summon with a single keyboard combo, and save custom effects as presets.
The Flow transition is a great tool when your editing jump cuts. This makes those edits for removing slips of the tongue in interviews much smoother. I tested this on footage of an interview with our mobile guru, Sascha Segan, and the result was remarkable. Even though I cut out several words in the middle of a sentence, the Flow tool made the cut invisible. His head showed no motion at all, even though he had moved slightly in the part I cut out.
The Flow tool simply filled in the missing bits, smoothing over the gap. This is an impressive tool. In my testing, I found it easy to crop, rotate, resize, move, and do 3D skews on clips right in the preview window using handles. Composite picture-in-picture effects didn’t slow down playback, as you see in some other video editing software, such as Pinnacle Studio. Color Final Cut does wonders with color correction.
You can either have the app automatically balance color, saturation, and exposure, or use the Color Adjustment panel to manually adjust them. The panel has a color picker to set a clip’s color values, saturation, and exposure, each of which you can apply separately to shadows, mid-tones, highlights, or everything. New for version These have a puck in the middle that lets you move an image towards green, blue, or red, showing the result on the side of the wheel.
You can also adjust brightness and saturation with the wheels, and separately control everything with the Master wheel , or just shadows, midtones , or highlights. It’s a remarkably powerful and intuitive set of tools, and more usable than Adobe Premiere Pro’s equivalent color wheel tools. If Final Cut’s wheels are not to your taste, the Color Board shows a linear view of your color settings.
The color scopes now adapt to HDR editing, as do the color editing tools. Supported formats include Rec. To get even deeper into the weeds of color correction, the new Color Curves tool lets you use multiple control points to adjust each of the three primary colors for very specific points on the brightness scale.
Luma, Vectorscope, and RGB Parade monitors give you incredible insight into your movie’s color usage. You can even edit a single color value using a dropper. These effects can be combined with others in a stacked arrangement.
The Match Color feature lets you transfer color and exposure characteristics from one clip to the rest to give your project a consistent look and adjust specific areas of the image based on selected color or a mask. The Color Balance tool, according to Apple, can “increase contrast and remove color casts while making skin tones appear more natural. The Touch Bar changes its appearance based on what you’re doing in the application.
It’s nifty to see your timeline tracks or color options on the Touch Bar. Below, you can see three Touch Bar displays, for basic editing, timeline scrubbing, and text customization. These and many other versions of the Touch Bar show up automatically to expose tools that might be otherwise hidden in the menu. It’s a great tool for beginners. It might also be a good tool for higher-end users, too, but I can’t help wonder if long-time Final Cut editors might be resistant to it.
The biggest issue is that when you’re working on a project, your eyes are intensely focused on the screen, not on the keyboard. And most video editors have the basic editing keyboard shortcuts in muscle memory by this point, so moving your gaze from the video content down to the keyboard introduces a disconnect in your workflow.
Still, it’s a good optional tool. If you just want to be able to scrub through a video with your finger, you could do this in Adobe Premiere Elements on a Windows 10 touch-capable display without taking your eyes off the screen.
Price Apple Final Cut Pro X
Good organization tools including libraries, ratings, tagging, auto analysis for faces, scenes. Fast, with bit and multi-core support. Cons Can’t import projects from previous Final Cut versions natively though you can use a third-party plug-in. Custom export settings require separate Compressor app. It does a remarkable job of bridging these two worlds, and though professionals may complain about its nontraditional trackless timeline and amateurs may scratch their heads over its wealth of sophisticated options, it turns out to be a magnificent tool for both.