Thursday, July 14, 2011
FCPX - A week later...
Well, it's been an interesting week... a trip to the USA with Howard Jones for a couple of gigs in Salt Lake City and California... and more playing with Apple's FCPX.
So.... what's the deal with the new FCP? Well, i still like it...a lot. BUT... there are some serious niggles. The lack of external monitoring is just crazy and needs to be fixed...quick. The lack of export options is just plain annoying. Using Compressor is all very well, but it's an extra step i don't need. The background rendering is cool...i really like it, but sometimes, if you go a bit mad with effects, it can really slow up your machine while you're working. It can't be helped, i know.... just don't get mislead into believing there's no rendering going on...because there is.
I miss the old motion controls... the new ones are supposed to be easier, but i still find it tricky to do what used to seem really easy... re-sizing clips...changing the aspect ratio to whatever i want and animating frames seems harder. Maybe it's just getting used to the new way of working... but i really miss the old way.
My biggest issue is the size of the GUI details. The text in the footage list is huge... it doesn't need to be that big... I can't find a way to shrink it. I'd like to maximize my preview window to suit 2.35:1, but when i do, it puts a red rectangle on it to show that i'm chopping off part of the 16x9 letter boxing... that's just annoying. Oh, and they need to put 'Re-Connect Media' back in there... it's vital. You can fire up a project on a different machine, but it's harder than it needs to be. Also, it appears that you're editing the actual footage destructively... so if you try to edit the same footage in another package, FCP won't recognise the clip afterwards...which caused all kinds of issues... especially with no 're-connect media'.
Things to like: Lots of it... it's fast...really fast! The effects are fantastic. Slow-motion is soooo cool now... there's a twixtor type algorithm going on.. you can go really slow and it looks so much smoother. Putting together an edit is far quicker than it used to be.... ideas get to the 'let's watch it back' stage far quicker.
So... i'm still liking it, but i really do need to see an update soon that fixes some of the bigger issues. I'm starting a new feature in 8 weeks time and i need external monitoring and some way of getting the cut to a colourist... so unless that's fixed by then...i will have to think hard about what to do.
I really do think it's all fixable without too much work on Apple's part. I don't see the need to chuck my toys out the pram yet... but i'm reserving the right to do it later if it doesn't get fixed.
Hopefully, FCPX will get the updates we need and i'll have a head start in using it. I really don't want to have to re-learn Premiere. Interestingly, i started on Premiere (unless you count a few weeks with Speed-Razor on the PC years ago)... and i really hated the transition to FCP...i found it quite tricky at first.
On a complete tangent... i stayed in Cupertino in California this week and saw Apple's HQ.... it's really nothing to write home about. It's huge...4 blocks of the city is just Apple... but it's not a futuristic under-sea place like the Simpsons would have you believe. Bit gutted really.. ;-)