Donnerstag, 21. Juli 2011

Further features, bugs and cleaned up misunderstandings about FCPX

New update 0800cet July26th, bad news section

Well, you need to read aaaalllllll of this blog to hear everything...but this post will be updated every now and then with news about the actual editing process and when I find new features.

Here are more features and bugs (or missing features) that I find while working on this project.

Good news:
- In 2-screen mode while trimming or sliding there are in fact two viewers. I have the viewer and the scopes/hostogram on the right screen. When trimming the Scopes make room for the IN-Point view. So it is a dual viewer when you need it.

- Did you know you can add keyframes to the audio by holding ALT and clicking anywhere on the audio-volume-line?
- I have Compressor rendering in the background (using 400% of my 16 cores = 1600%). FCPX doesn´t mind at all. In FCP7 a render process in another program always slowed FCP7.
- I love the icon view now - but still want a "one-line-per-clip-view". I have the duration set to 10 seconds and it is a breeze to skim through a bin/collection with dozens of clips.
- OMG. I just found a simple way to speed things up: Menu "View-> Hide Waveforms", do that for the Event and you can race through the icons even faster.....WOW! In the timeline it also helps to turn them off or just change the clipappearance in the bottom right.
- in the Project Browser you can select a project and share it (render out a version), FCPX does this in the background and you can work on another project/event. more waiting at all
- The new colour correction tool is a great color correction tool. I don´t say grading (yet), but colour correction.- Correction often means to fix a "too cool" or "too warm"....well....minus reddish or minus blueish is what you want. It works. Easy. Grading I am not so sure yet, but fixing problems it is fast and the quality of it seems to match that of the old "Color"

Bad news:
- database stopped workin on me for two hours. did colour corrections and audiocleanups for several hours. when i realized the undo function stopped working i restarted FCPx. 2 hours lost. apparently when the CMD-Z doesn´t work and in the menu EDIT-UNDO is greyed out the database doesn´t work anymore and your work is NOT SAVED. 2 hours between 11pm and 1am lost. GRRREEAATTT...NOT
- with 5600 items and dozens of keywords it takes a while now to open and close the project. 2 minutes each way i guess.
- today I had a few crashes, don´t know yet if it is the compressor in the background (rendering for 12 hours now....)
- major flaw found !!!! you know you can´t drag an effect from clip to the next. you have to copy the clip and paste ALL its effects. Doing this you will also copy all audio-efects for example. If you have a soundcompressor on one clip you will copy it over to the next. if there was one before...messed you have to clean up stuff after this copyprocedure. if haven´t found a shortcut "copy video effects only" or "copy audio-effects". they need to find a way so you can drag an effect from the inspector onto another clip. making presets is no help either....i will end up with hundreds of presets soon. and it´s slow to scroll down to them anyway.
        !!!!!EDIT: I found some help: you can go to COMMANDS and find "Copy Color Correction from previous clip, two clips before and three clips before and copy/paste these corrections alone. I have now shortcuts for these 3 paste-commands.

- interesting tidbit: i have some synced clips (shot with 7D and H4N; synced fine in the event) and when I went through them to add keywords the program went very very very sluggish. I thought at first I had reached the point of breakdown, restarted the machine, but no help. then tried on "normal clips" and there was no problem. So apprently when the database reches this size then adding keywords to a synced clips (i guess it adds keywords to several items in the background, since there are several audiotracks involved) is a little bit of a timeeater. so it might be better to keyword synced clips first, before you reach 80+ keyword collections like me ;-)
- missing: the ability to rename corrections in the colourtab. if you have 4 or five it would be nice to call them (expose, vignette, skin etc)

My way:
- title-fades.....there are two ways to fade titles/graphics. One is to make it it a secondary storyline (CMD-G), only then can you add a transition like a dissolve. This turns the title into a clip (also in size/height in the timeline, only purple). I don´t like that because I will put the titles on the "highest track" in the end so i can create a clean version of the film easily. And when they are thinner they are easier to be identified as titles to me. So I use the videoanimator in the clip (CTRL-V), adjust the opacity fade there and then CTRL-A to collapse this video-animationtool again.

- now you ask how I will put things into higher tracks....well...I use gap-clips to adjust the magnetic timeline. It is fairly easy. At the end of the project when I go through it all anway to check audio I will add gapclips and position them where I need to lift clips higher up (or lower on audio). This is one of the setbacks of the magentic timeline....but IMO it is by far not as long as what the magnetism saves me in time during the actual edit). 
- when you want to fix several audio-tracks that are attached to a video, don´t detach audio, but instead open the clip in a timeline of its own. I made myself a keyboard shortcut for that. there you can toggle and edit the audio without losing sync and then collapse it back to the videoclip.


  1. Thanks for this test guys. It helps a lot to decide if i can use FCPX for what i need. Based on what you wrote, i think i'll give it a try.

  2. go for it michi!, but i hope you have FCP7 if you need to go to tape.....

  3. BTW Michi, I went back to FCP7 briefly is unworkable once you are used to X!

  4. Hi! What a nice experiment you are doing here. Very nice information for me as I will be downloading this FCPX soon.
    For what I am reading on forums it seems the performance of the FCPX changes significantly when you use Lion instead of Snow Leopard.
    I am not saying you should upgrade now because you are on a job, but maybe later you can try on one of the laptops just to see for yourself. :)
    Thanks for writing this blog sharing your experiment.

  5. far I didn´t read about much improvement in Lion. But i will upfgrade my Macbook soon, because there´s nothing to lose anymore there. This project is too big for it now, after we merged all events together. :D

  6. Waveforms.... never liked them, never really needed them. Visual clutter if you ask me. Intersting to know that they still slow down today's computers (turning them off was mandatory on early NLE's if you wanted any performance out of them).

    Following your work closely. Don't call it an experiment, you're producing real work!

    Keep up the good work.


  7. Patrice, we are far over the experimental stage. it is too late to switch now....I am in the middel of the 2 shorter documentaries (26 and 20 minutes; with different story-angles) and have to finish in FCPX now, until tape-output/8-channel audio-output which will be done in FCP7.