When Apple released the new version of Final Cut Pro, dubbed “X” in 2011, two things happened. Video editors everywhere realized the price had been cut down dramatically to a mere $300, so they downloaded it. Then they opened up the program and collectively blew their brains out.
Final Cut Pro 7 was considered, and still is, one of the best Non-Linear Video Editing (NLE) programs, ever. It’s what directors use. It’s what television studios use. It’s what I use. So naturally, Apple decided to change it. The program was completely redesigned, and the price was cut significantly.
Thirty days ago, I downloaded the 30-day free trial, on a whim. Then something unexpected happened. I bought FCP X after those 30 days.
I heard the horror stories. I was discouraged from using it for class. Some called it the “red-headed bastard child” of FCP 7. Other’s called it iMovie on steroids. I call it awesome.
To all the haters: I feel your pain. Apple took your baby from you and gave it a sex change. Now, nothing works right. Some of the coveted features in 7 were nowhere to be found in X. That was in 2011. Since then, several updates have slowly begun adding these features to X.
There’s a few reasons why I bought this program. First, I was using FCP 7 on school computers and wanted to purchase it for myself, but Apple no longer sells it. Also, at only $300, this is the cheapest professional video editing software on the market. It’s actually something I can afford.
The first thing I noticed about FCP X, was how intuitive it is. Yes, the layout is dramatically different from 7, but after playing around with it for 30 days, I didn’t need an instruction manual. Perhaps that’s why this program was snubbed for being “too amatuer” for elite videographers. I agree that Apple needs to incorporate more “professional” features into the program, but at face-value FCP X is an incredible tool.
There is a dilemma though. Nobody wants to touch FCP X with a ten-foot pole. The classes I take, and the job I work for use FCP 7. Instructors only teach FCP 7. The question that I keep screaming in my head: why teach a now obsolete program to young journalists and videographers?
I know the answer…it’s because certain features in FCP 7 haven’t yet been added to X. These are the features that the pro’s need. Slowly, they are being added in updates. This should give hope to the editing community. It means that Apple has the potential to fix this dilemma, and reclaim it’s title as the “industry standard.”
Here’s a video project I did using FCP X.