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What would it take?

COW Forums : Apple FCPX or Not: The Debate

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Oliver PetersWhat would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 2:56:23 pm

Clearly a lot of us have beat this thing to death, but what's really at the heart of this, is what would it take as a tipping point to get FCP X more widely adopted among pros? I think you have to approach this realistically. Simply saying, "give us back all the FCP 7 features" ain't gonna happen. There are too many design issues, I fear. Here's a short list that to me makes it more viable:

1. Make audio trimming/transitions as easy as and comparable to current video trimming.

2. Add "open in Motion" or "send to Motion" functions for clips.

3. Either add track-based mixing or add a "send to Logic" function.

4. Add modifiers to give you some user-defined control over the magnetic timeline. More than just the position tool.

5. Add user-defined controls for more track-like behavior. Such as expanded use/behavior of additional storylines.

6. Add a "save as" function.

7. Add event/project management to open/hide projects and media.

8. Add the ability to not see the event thumbnail when you click on it.

9. Remember clip in/out points.

10. Add some user control over window layouts.

11. Add some way to see a second window as a soure/record (2-up) view.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Chris HarlanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 3:53:15 pm

Good list.

I would also add:

the ability to have multiple sequences open simultaneously.


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Oliver PetersRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 4:18:48 pm

And of course, copy/paste/remove attributes (with palette options) and something like an equivalent to the track tool.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Chris HarlanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 4:54:46 pm

[Oliver Peters] "And of course, copy/paste/remove attributes (with palette options) and something like an equivalent to the track tool.
"


Gawd, yeah. I didn't know it doesn't have "Paste Attributes." Man, there is just so much it doesn't have.


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Oliver PetersRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 5:04:09 pm

[Chris Harlan] "Gawd, yeah. I didn't know it doesn't have "Paste Attributes.""

It has "paste effects" but it's an all-or-nothing thing. So, you can't paste scale without also pasting filters or audio parameters, for example.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Craig SeemanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 5:14:27 pm

Dual Channel Mono support in Storylines and Precision Editor.



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Herb SevushRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 5:21:14 pm

[Chris Harlan] "Gawd, yeah. I didn't know it doesn't have "Paste Attributes." Man, there is just so much it doesn't have."

Which is why it never made any sense to EOL and stop selling Legacy months, if not years, before the baby could walk. After all this time and thousands of posts spent discussing it ad nauseum, the logic of that decision is still the most puzzling thing about the whole roll-out. Whoever first publishes the details of the inside story on that decision will definitely get my money.

Herb Sevush
Zebra Productions
---------------------------
nothin' attached to nothin'
"Deciding the spine is the process of editing" F. Bieberkopf


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Phil BrockettRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 6:14:50 pm

I agree. Sometime in 2010, I seem to remember reading about Apple having a mass layoff of the Final Cut "team." May have read about it here or the Apple rumor site. Anyway, many of the concerns raised back then were either rationalized away or shouted down by other commentators on the site.

A good investigative journalist could easily get to the bottom of this story.

Considering the large investment that many companies had in FCP plug-ins that were effectively EOL'd by Apple as well as the money and time these companies had in the training and investment in Apple products, etc. Apple is taking one big credibility hit on this. They likely factored all of this into their decision to drop Final Cut Pro, which was probably done years ago. It's depressing and disappointing.


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Oliver PetersRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 6:27:27 pm

[Phil Brockett] "I agree. Sometime in 2010, I seem to remember reading about Apple having a mass layoff of the Final Cut "team.""

It's generally been acknowledged that this lay-off was about 40 people in QA/Support.

But, that's water under the bridge. What do they need to fix going forward in order to keep the interest of "professional" editors?

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Martti EkstrandRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 6:35:27 pm

Well, unless they fix a decent import/translator of FCP projects, FCPX will never be a viable option for me. Got too many clients with jobs that are re-worked/used on a regular basis.


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Oliver PetersRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 6:40:41 pm

[Martti Ekstrand] "Well, unless they fix a decent import/translator of FCP projects"

I think you'll only see that via a third-party company. And then only sequences with limited effects translation. Maybe another $50 app that's the reverse direction of X27. Probably some type of XML-to-FCPXML translation utility.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Geert van den BergRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 6:57:20 pm

There's already several tools that can do this. It won't be a 1:1 conversion, but that neither would be if you import a FCP XML v5 into another NLE.


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Martti EkstrandRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 5:17:13 am

I would not trust a third party solution with (for me) such a vital function.


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Phil BrockettRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 9:38:54 pm

Jobs was widely quoted saying the layoffs were in "support not engineering." These terms are pretty vague in the software development field and may have different meanings for different companies. Only Apple (and those laid off) know. Even if they were in "QA/support", do a google search with "layoff final cut apple" and see what you get. It's pretty clear looking back that something very serious was happening with Final Cut Pro 7. I don't know, Final Cut Pro X may indeed be "amazing," but is it amazing in a good way? I don't know the answer to that.

I am not a "pro editor" but all the audio issues in FCPX discussed earlier are a non starter. The interlinking between FCPX and Motion make me worry if I were to try to use Motion 5 for a complex composite with large HD files. The list is long and I don't want to be repetitive.


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David Roth WeissRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 10:03:13 pm

[Phil Brockett] "Jobs was widely quoted saying the layoffs were in "support not engineering." These terms are pretty vague in the software development field and may have different meanings for different companies."

Forgetting about the layoffs momentarily, there was a rumor that the entire Motion team in Santa Monica, who were also working on the rebuild of FCP, were pulled off that job, for over a year so they could be put into service creating graphics for the iPad, just so Apple could get it out the door faster.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Bringing "The Whale" to the Big Screen:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-2-MikeParfit...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Phil BrockettRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 11:18:44 pm

Rumors usually at least some basis in fact. I bet right now there is some DBA canditate pitching a proposed dissertation on this stuff to some marketing professor.


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Liam HallRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 7:27:41 pm

You can stick all the features you like into FCX, but if Apple are to regain credibility they have to start openly communicating with professional users.

Liam Hall
Director/DoP/Editor
http://www.liamhall.net


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Bill DavisRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 9:39:51 pm

To answer the original question above is so simple as to be trivial.

What would it take to make the people who use it happy? It must solve the editing problems they face. Period. End of story.

X is for me, right now. But clearly not for everyone.

If those problems revolve around large collaborative workflows, it's going to take quite a while, IMO and the sensible thing to do is assess whether you can freeze your workflow as it is today in order to see if it evolves enough for you — or you have to switch software in order to do what you need to do as quickly as you need to do it.

Modern LIFE is, after all, increasingly a constant, on-going learning curve.

I'm enjoying what it does uniquely and differently - and the new capabilities it gives me in relation to the way I need to edit - mobility, agility, not being locked to my studio in order to produce useful work - those are the capabilities I see as enabling me to thrive in the future I want to peruse. For others, those things are low order priorities, and I get that.

I also know that Life's too short to live in unnecessary frustration — but it's also too short to spend excessive time in what a professional speaker I know described in a recent seminar as "the amazingly popular new BMW" : Bitching, Moaning, and Whining!

His message: things are NOT the same as they used to be. In the economy, in business, in life. If things are still doing fine for you - excellent. Keep doing what you're doing - as long as you can - and if that means finding a replacement for what FCP no longer will be - do that.

But if you start to see things aren't going to continue working in ways that benefit what you need to do - dump them and move to something different. You finally have an alternate choice that doesn't work the same.

I'm firmly convinced I'll know what's good for me when I see it. I won't have to have anyone else point that out. Because I've been making similar calls my entire career - and my track record has been largely successful in keeping with my personal skills and abilities.

I'm moving ahead with X, cause it feels right for me. If it doesn't for you - for any damn reason you can imagine - change.

Couldn't be simpler.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Chris HarlanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 10:14:00 pm

[Bill Davis] "X is for me, right now. But clearly not for everyone."

We know.

[Bill Davis] "I also know that Life's too short to live in unnecessary frustration — but it's also too short to spend excessive time in what a professional speaker I know described in a recent seminar as "the amazingly popular new BMW" : Bitching, Moaning, and Whining!"

FYI--You do an awful lot of bitching, moaning and whining about other people's bitching, moaning and whining. This thread is about people making a list of small things that would make FCP X useable for them. That seems to me a positive thing. Why are you BMWing it?

[Bill Davis] "I'm moving ahead with X, cause it feels right for me. If it doesn't for you - for any damn reason you can imagine - change.

Couldn't be simpler."


Really? So we shouldn't talk about things that we feel might improve the program? Just totally accept it or go? Sounds a bit defeatist to me. You've got to stop all that BMW and start looking on the bright side of things.


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Bill DavisRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 10:31:20 pm

[Chris Harlan] "[Bill Davis] "X is for me, right now. But clearly not for everyone."

We know.

Good. Then I'm doing the job I want to do. Providing a voice for the people who come here and might enjoy reading multiple perspectives.



[Bill Davis] "I also know that Life's too short to live in unnecessary frustration — but it's also too short to spend excessive time in what a professional speaker I know described in a recent seminar as "the amazingly popular new BMW" : Bitching, Moaning, and Whining!"

FYI--You do an awful lot of bitching, moaning and whining about other people's bitching, moaning and whining. This thread is about people making a list of small things that would make FCP X useable for them. That seems to me a positive thing. Why are you BMWing it?

See above. Same answer. I've got no problem with threads like this, by the way. I just like to provide the counter-voice to the ones that constantly IMPLIE that FCP-X is somehow "broken." when in fact, it's not "broken" at all. Just not fully developed. Some readers here get that. Others, particularly those who aren't as "deep" into the dissuasion as you and I, don't see the balance. So I like to provide some.

What's wrong with that? This is a public discussion, not just the "pro editors clubhouse." That's important to remember.


[Bill Davis] "I'm moving ahead with X, cause it feels right for me. If it doesn't for you - for any damn reason you can imagine - change.

Couldn't be simpler."

Really? So we shouldn't talk about things that we feel might improve the program? Just totally accept it or go? Sounds a bit defeatist to me. You've got to stop all that BMW and start looking on the bright side of things. "


Talk all you like. And I'm not defeatist at all. I just understand in the un-moderated, free for all that is public discourse in the modern world, things are better if we get to see MULTIPLE perspectives.

Are you saying that somehow mine is LESS valuable than anyone else's?

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Chris HarlanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:43:44 am

[Bill Davis] "Talk all you like. And I'm not defeatist at all. I just understand in the un-moderated, free for all that is public discourse in the modern world, things are better if we get to see MULTIPLE perspectives.

Are you saying that somehow mine is LESS valuable than anyone else's?
"


No, Bill; you're opinion is quite valuable. I was actually enjoying reading about your usage the other day. I really do believe that there is a positive experience here to be had for many people. A cinematographer was extolling FCP X's virtues the other day, and after looking at his reel, I could really see why it was a very good fit for him. I also see, after reading some details of how you use it, why it is a great fit for you. I hope you share more of that. I hope the cinematographer shares more.

All I'm BMWing about here is your BMWing for people to stop BMWing, and the occasional maxim you put forward that says, basically, "if you don't like it, buzz off."

Really, what I would like to hear more about are your experiences.


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Bill DavisRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:20:15 pm

[Chris Harlan] "
All I'm BMWing about here is your BMWing for people to stop BMWing, and the occasional maxim you put forward that says, basically, "if you don't like it, buzz off."
"


Well, Chris,

If nobody ever steps up and publicly says, "enough already with the BMW" then it's likely that this specific board will always be nothing but a reflection of the "NOT" view. Something it's in serious danger of already being.

As I and a few other voices constantly aver, FCP-X is a high-functioning new youngster. It has plenty of gaps in it's "institutional wisdom" - but heck, if back in 1999, that's all anyone had ever talked about with FCP-V1 was ITs shortcomings, - (no JKL support, no Beta SP support via RS-323, 422, only Firewire i/o, limited and "cheesy" built-in effects, etc, ad nauseum) then the editing industry landscape of today might be very different.

It's "grace period" during it's initial roll-out - and the constant evolution of not just the program, but the view by the larger industry of first it's "sweet spot" then it's growing capabilities, and eventually it's unprecedented success as it evolved into the dominant general use editing platform in the world, are a story I believe to be worth remembering.

We'll see.

Oh, and as to your enjoyment of my experiences deploying FCP-X, hold on for a couple of days. I'm doing something with it on Monday that looks like it will be an interesting minor exploration into a new (for me, anyway) arena.

I'll let you and everyone else here know how it works out.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Aindreas GallagherRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 12:50:12 am

[Bill Davis] " Because I've been making similar calls my entire career - and my track record has been largely successful in keeping with my personal skills and abilities.

I'm moving ahead with X, cause it feels right for me. If it doesn't for you - for any damn reason you can imagine - change.

Couldn't be simpler."


Bill, could you kindly please stop telling people what to do. this is an open debate forum. Stop it.


http://www.ogallchoir.net
promo producer/editor.grading/motion graphics


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John DavidsonRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 9:39:04 pm

My base needs are:
1. OMF export.
2. External Monitor/Deck support with BM and AJA cards.
3. Project archiving clarity. Maybe it's easy, but I can't figure it out till I've actually taken some time working on it, which can't be done until 1 and 2 have been fixed.
4. Upgrade old projects from FCP7.

Every time I get a 'out of memory' error on FCP7, I get a little more ticked with Apple about FCPX. Back in the spring I made light of people's fears, and I was wrong. In the summer I advised patience for updates to fix it by August, and I was wrong again. Now, I don't even see the point of thinking about this product anymore. We just have to live with FCP7 for now and hope, some day, X gets the attention is deserves.

At least my new 4S is really cool. Sigh.


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David Roth WeissRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 10:10:36 pm

[John Davidson] " In the summer I advised patience for updates to fix it by August, and I was wrong again. Now, I don't even see the point of thinking about this product anymore. We just have to live with FCP7 for now and hope, some day, X gets the attention is deserves."

Wow!!! That is without a doubt the biggest reversal to date in the history of FCPX. You might want to consider purchasing body armor John.

Was their one specific event that was the turning point for you?

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Bringing "The Whale" to the Big Screen:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-2-MikeParfit...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Scott CumboRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 22, 2011 at 11:32:48 pm

This is an easy question, All it will take is a client who wants to work in FCPx. It's simple and all about money. I feel the same way about premiere. If they're paying my rate, i'll cut their project on windows movie maker it thats what they want.

Until that day comes I'll work in Avid and FCP 7.

Scott Cumbo
Editor
Broadway Video, NYC


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Chris HarlanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:52:34 am

[Scott Cumbo] "This is an easy question, All it will take is a client who wants to work in FCPx. It's simple and all about money. I feel the same way about premiere. If they're paying my rate, i'll cut their project on windows movie maker it thats what they want.

Until that day comes I'll work in Avid and FCP 7.
"


Well, there is that. Touche. You right coasters are wicked smart folk.


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Scott CumboRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 3:26:17 pm

[Chris Harlan] "Well, there is that. Touche. You right coasters are wicked smart folk."

where you born a douche or did it take practice?

Scott Cumbo
Editor
Broadway Video, NYC


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Chris HarlanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:10:48 pm

[Scott Cumbo] "[Chris Harlan] "Well, there is that. Touche. You right coasters are wicked smart folk."

where you born a douche or did it take practice?

Scott Cumbo
Editor
Broadway Video, NYC
"


Wow. I think that's the first time I've ever been called a douche bag. I'm guessing we have a little communication issue here. I wasn't making fun of you. I was actually complementing you for pointing out what should be obvious to the rest of us but often gets lost in the conversation. I see, however--in the light of your response--that what I wrote could be taken as mean-arsed sarcasm. It wasn't meant that way. Sorry if you were offended.


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David Roth WeissRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:24:25 pm

[Chris Harlan] "Wow. I think that's the first time I've ever been called a douche bag. I'm guessing we have a little communication issue here. I wasn't making fun of you. I was actually complementing you for pointing out what should be obvious to the rest of us but often gets lost in the conversation."

I was also going to agree with Scott's original post. I'm glad I didn't now.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

Don't miss my new Creative Cow Podcast: Bringing "The Whale" to the Big Screen:
http://library.creativecow.net/weiss_roth_david/Podcast-Series-2-MikeParfit...

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums.


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Chris HarlanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:59:35 pm

So, what did I do? Misuse the word "wicked" or something? That's what I get for aping TV/movie dialog.


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Scott CumboRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:43:50 pm

Sorry Chris, I def took it the wrong way. In fact i was kind of surprised because these forums are usually pretty mellow. Sorry again.

Scott Cumbo
Editor
Broadway Video, NYC


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Chris HarlanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:55:43 pm

[Scott Cumbo] "Sorry Chris, I def took it the wrong way. In fact i was kind of surprised because these forums are usually pretty mellow. Sorry again.
"


No, Dude. My apologies. I bet in your high octane world it sounded like one a Grade-A smart ass remark. I totally agree with you. If a client wanted to pay the usual (but hourly) to go back to working on an old analog convergence system, I'd be there.


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kim krauseRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 10:28:04 am

people here always misunderstand me. i think there is too much sensitivity and political correctness. often i just speak from the heart and not the head so it may come out sounding rude or unrefined but thats just me. i always look for the essence of what is being said as opposed to what is written. but definitely i think most folks here judge a little too quickly. did i say that right .hope i haven't offended anyone...oh crap of course i hope i've offended someone. how else would i cause a reaction....hahaha


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Nathan BeznerRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 1:09:51 am

Although there are many things I'd like to add in order to use FCPX with my day to day work, one item keeps me from doing so. It doesn't break the program, it isn't absolutely necessary in order for me to complete my work. It just really aggravates me and taints the entire program:

The inability to move windows/modify your own workspace.

That's it. If I could do that, I would work around the majority of the other issues FCPX has. Without that, I feel like I'm working in a cookie-cutter prison, and will never use the software. I want more options than "single monitor" and "dual monitor". I don't like being told how to work. FCPX makes me feel like my dad is standing over my shoulder at all times, making sure I don't draw outside the lines.

Nathan Bezner
Nightowl Pictures


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 4:25:00 am

The people that have left, I mean really have left the building, aren't coming back At least not in my opinion.

That leaves those of us that are hanging around.

I think the magnetic timeline is pretty cool, and I think it does take a bit to get used to.

What I think is the biggest "problem" with FCPX is the "at a glance" visually organized audio.

Notice I didn't say tracks.

I think that underneath the primary storyline, audio clips should be "click sortable" by roles. Dialogue above effects above music, or whatever makes sense to the user, with a click. If these could be placed in vertical space where the user wants, I think it would allow what some people miss about tracks, but keep the advantages of tracklessness in tact. The problem is, it wouldn't be very precise, so it might be tough to do elegantly as it would seem you need a modicum of fixed space, so.....

Hear me out, I understand this isn't completely fleshed out. I don't know how well it would work, but I could envision the space below the primary storyline to be organized in "zones". Perhaps they would be "boxes" of very transparent user defined colors. When adding an audio clip to the timeline, the audio role would define which zone the clip goes in to. New role, new zone. Subroles would generally be added to the main Role's zone. The zones would only be as thick as the layers in the Role deem them to be and stretch across the whole screen. They would be dynamic in their size. So kind of like tracks, but really separate groups of layers. All other timeline methods stay in place (connected/magnet/trackless/etc). Of course the Roles index would work the same too, as would Export.

I don't know, maybe it wouldnt make sense as it gets tricky if audio is above the primary.

I'll get trounced for this, but I really don't think tracks are necessary, but I do think controllable visual organization of audio might be, as is export control to tracked programs. Fcpx just needs a bit more control in this regard. At their core, the tracks in FCP Legacy are controllable audio clip organizers.

Also, Event Manager X is worth every penny of $4.99 for managing Events and Projects.


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Chris HarlanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:56:36 am

[Jeremy Garchow] "I think that underneath the primary storyline, audio clips should be "click sortable" by roles." and the rest.

Interesting ideas! I could see an answer being somewhere in that direction.


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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 2:16:38 pm

[Chris Harlan] "[Jeremy Garchow] "I think that underneath the primary storyline, audio clips should be "click sortable" by roles." and the rest.

Interesting ideas! I could see an answer being somewhere in that direction."


Yes, it's an interesting idea. But it basically makes the magnetic timeline behave like another visually organized metaphor - the fixed track timeline...with some marginal added flexibility. But would the added flexibility be offset by the constant re-arranging of the zones forcing the editor to constantly adjust to shifting patterns? I don't know but it seems to me the real issue here is not spatial organization, it's whether editing in ripple mode can ever be efficient with complex timelines.

I don't ever edit in ripple mode unless I'm doing a simple assembly. Once I'm multi tracked with all kinds of independent audio layers I'm out of ripple faster than a jackrabbit with tail on fire. No matter how you slice it up the magnetic timeline by definition is a rippling structure behaving by simple rules. It just can't have the intelligence of a human - at least not in the foreseeable future.

This argument has seen the light of day here before but it keeps getting subsumed in ideas how to improve the magnetic timeline. If there's a way to turn off ripple and maintain trackless re-organization I haven't seen it yet. I think Apple may have painted themselves into a corner by going this way. Then again it's an engineer's folly to create solutions that turn out to be bigger problems than what they were trying to improve. All signs point to the liklihood that that's what's happened here.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 2:43:46 pm

[David Cherniack] "But would the added flexibility be offset by the constant re-arranging of the zones forcing the editor to constantly adjust to shifting patterns? I don't know but it seems to me the real issue here is not spatial organization, it's whether editing in ripple mode can ever be efficient with complex timelines. "

I guess it wouldn't be any different than constantly having to rearrange tracks, except it would be easier and more dynamic.

[David Cherniack] "This argument has seen the light of day here before but it keeps getting subsumed in ideas how to improve the magnetic timeline. If there's a way to turn off ripple and maintain trackless re-organization I haven't seen it yet. I think Apple may have painted themselves into a corner by going this way. "

I guess I disagree.


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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 3:05:37 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "I guess it wouldn't be any different than constantly having to rearrange tracks, except it would be easier and more dynamic."

Who has to constantly rearrange tracks? Once I start my actual editing I set my tracks and add clips to them as approriate. By assigning or dropping on zones you're doing the exact same thing. So how is it easier unless you're making incorrect assumptions about my workflow? 'Dynamic' I can see. Marginally more flexible also. I'm not sure that it's better because of the rippling issue that I'll address in my response to Simon.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 3:54:17 pm

[David Cherniack] "Who has to constantly rearrange tracks? Once I start my actual editing I set my tracks and add clips to them as approriate"

You know how many tracks you're going to have before you edit?

What if all of a sudden an effect is comprised of 6 stereo pairs, you don't have to rearrange your timeline for that?

"Zones" would simply adjust. I'm not assuming anything about your workflow. It's cool. Let's discuss it.


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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 4:23:57 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "ou know how many tracks you're going to have before you edit?"

Almost completely. But I'm doing most of my sound tracks as I edit and mixing, unless it's really a big outsourced job, can be done in Premiere/Audition.

A basic layout that's modified as each film demands (All stereo pairs):

Voiceover X2 (if voiceover present)
Interview X 2 or as many as I need usually determnined by the mic used and their particular EQ which is adjusted in a track effect.
Sync X3
Effects X4
Music X3


[Jeremy Garchow] "What if all of a sudden an effect is comprised of 6 stereo pairs, you don't have to rearrange your timeline for that?"

I'd have to add two stereo pairs. One action.

[Jeremy Garchow] ""Zones" would simply adjust. I'm not assuming anything about your workflow. It's cool. Let's discuss it"

I think zones may be a very good idea. As most of my track layout is done at the beginning I don't see it as inherently different than fixed tracks.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 4:39:02 pm

[David Cherniack] "Voiceover X2 (if voiceover present)
Interview X 2 or as many as I need usually determnined by the mic used and their particular EQ which is adjusted in a track effect.
Sync X3
Effects X4
Music X3
"


Perfect, then your zones would be all setup provided you setup your Roles upon import.

You wouldn't have too add any actions, just simply add the audio to the timeline where you want in time, and the role would determine the "zone". You won't need the fixed tracks.

Oh well, it's just fantasy at this point. I do think adjustable audio clip organization would help FCPX a lot, whatever the method.

As would interchange, but my hunch is that more of that will come once fcpxml is further along.

In the meantime there's always Foolcut/X27/Resolve Lite/CatDV (just kidding Simon, replacement gasket is in the mail).


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 2:58:06 pm

[David Cherniack] "I think zones may be a very good idea. As most of my track layout is done at the beginning I don't see it as inherently different than fixed tracks."

It's different, as is the whole of FCPX. You will not get clip collisions and overlapping is done by default. If you need to replace something, you simply replace it with one of the replace commands. As I have said before, the magnetic timeline does not mean it takes away the need to edit your material. You still have to edit and get it where you want it, just like any NLE.


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 2:55:25 pm

[David Cherniack] "Who has to constantly rearrange tracks? Once I start my actual editing I set my tracks and add clips to them as approriate. By assigning or dropping on zones you're doing the exact same thing. So how is it easier unless you're making incorrect assumptions about my workflow? 'Dynamic' I can see. Marginally more flexible also. I'm not sure that it's better because of the rippling issue that I'll address in my response to Simon."

I rearrange tracks. I don't know, again, maybe I'm weird.

With these zones, you would set which order they stack, and then you simply add more audio to them and all the benefits of the magnetic timeline will then take over. Connected clips don't ripple unless the clip they are attached to in the primary is moved. You can always change the connection point as well.


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 2:47:58 pm

[David Cherniack] "it seems to me the real issue here is ... whether editing in ripple mode can ever be efficient with complex timelines."

I know there are lots of issues with the FCPX timeline generally (not least the "visual clutter" aspect, for which Jeremy's ideas are an interesting approach to a possible solution) but I'm not sure I can agree with the notion that the rippling timeline specificallyt is an insurmountable hurdle.

For start it is just as possible to edit in Overwrite Mode as it ever was so why exactly is rippling such an issue?

It's not as if it's a new concept that we haven't had to address before - rippling behaviour is sometimes appropriate and sometimes not, overwrite behaviour is sometimes appropriate and sometimes not.

Just as there are strategies for enabling rippling in a non-rippling timeline, so there are strategies for disabling rippling in FCPX.

Apologies if I'm missing a key complexity, but I really don't think this is one of the major issues.

Personally I think that, despite all the dumbing-down comments, the rippling timeline actually successfully addresses some very high level and complex editing situations (as for instance with the insert gap capability) that are significantly less well catered for by traditional means.

Lack of native OMF/EDL export on the other hand - don't get me started! And please don't anyone mention Foolcut/X27/Resolve or any other Heath Robinson multiple third party fix or I'll blow a gasket!!!!

Simon Ubsdell
Director/Editor/Writer
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 3:25:00 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "For start it is just as possible to edit in Overwrite Mode as it ever was so why exactly is rippling such an issue?

Just as there are strategies for enabling rippling in a non-rippling timeline, so there are strategies for disabling rippling in FCPX.

Apologies if I'm missing a key complexity, but I really don't think this is one of the major issues.

Personally I think that, despite all the dumbing-down comments, the rippling timeline actually successfully addresses some very high level and complex editing situations (as for instance with the insert gap capability) that are significantly less well catered for by traditional means."


Maybe there's something about the Magnetic timeline I don't grasp. The way I understand it the position tool is the only 'overwrite' function available and it works as an override to the standard rippling mode. If that's correct that's not the same thing as working in overwrite. If it's not, please do correct me.

Doing insert gap with complex timelines is always going to require some adjustments whether it's done in ripple or overwrite. I do it in overwrite because I thinks it's more controllable and predictable. But for me in PPro with the aid of a mouse macro it's as simple as selecting everything from the cursor back with one mouse click, deselecting whatever overlaps that I don't want to move and dragging a gap or entering the exact gap length.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 3:57:38 pm

[David Cherniack] "The way I understand it the position tool is the only 'overwrite' function available and it works as an override to the standard rippling mode. If that's correct that's not the same thing as working in overwrite. If it's not, please do correct me."

So much has been made of the Position tool in these discussion that it seems as though it's been forgotten that the D key (or Edit>Overwrite) is your standard Overwrite mode, no different from FCP or any other NLE. In fact, it's exactly the same and completely unchanged.

Note also that you can Lift from Primary Storyline (Opt/Cmd/Up arrow) as well as go the other way, which is again a non-rippling behaviour.

So, I think it is fair to say that the Position tool is absolutely not the only overwrite behaviour.

On the subject of gaps, I did discuss this at length in another thread which hopefully explains what I mean when I say that the insert gap function enables a very high order editing capability.

http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/335/17739#18364

In fact, this:

[David Cherniack] "Doing insert gap with complex timelines is always going to require some adjustments"

... is now actually not the case with FCPX. I'd say that in 99% of cases there will be no need for repairs or adjustments of any kind (beyond possibly trimming the gap), as everything stays connected exactly where you'd hope it would. (I know it doesn't seem possible or likely but try it and you'll see that it's true.) Accordingly, what used to be a multi-step process in almost every case (some times very many steps indeed), is now a single-step process.

Please don't think this is a blanket apology for the more heinous excesses of FCPX - I just do believe that in this case they've got something very complex really rather impressively right. Though I know it's going to be an uphill battle arguing this position, because looking at everything they've messed up on it's hard to believe they got anything right at all ;-)

Simon Ubsdell
Director/Editor/Writer
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 4:10:54 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "So, I think it is fair to say that the Position tool is absolutely not the only overwrite behaviour."

I forgot to add that everything that takes place outside the primary storyline is a non-rippling behaviour only - all connected clips operate in "overwrite mode" rather than rippling (although of course they slide out of each other's way rather than destructively eat into each other).

And an additional point to make is that nudging a clip up and down the primary storyline (using either the arrow keys or the number pad) is also an overwrite behaviour.

So all in all quite a lot of overwrite behaviour to be getting on with ;-)

Simon Ubsdell
Director/Editor/Writer
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Herb SevushRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 4:16:34 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "all connected clips operate in "overwrite mode" rather than rippling (although of course they slide out of each other's way rather than destructively eat into each other)."

What are the rules of precedence then - which clip is viewed when you move two clips into the same temporal space?

Herb Sevush
Zebra Productions
---------------------------
nothin' attached to nothin'
"Deciding the spine is the process of editing" F. Bieberkopf


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:27:12 pm

[Herb Sevush] "What are the rules of precedence then - which clip is viewed when you move two clips into the same temporal space?"

The one you choose to put on top? Or were you looking for a more profound answer?

;-)

Simon Ubsdell
Director/Editor/Writer
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Herb SevushRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:38:50 pm

Nothing profound, I was just wondering how the program decided which of the 2 clips gets to go on top. You are stating that the editor determines as he's moving the event?

Herb Sevush
Zebra Productions
---------------------------
nothin' attached to nothin'
"Deciding the spine is the process of editing" F. Bieberkopf


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:47:13 pm

[Herb Sevush] " I was just wondering how the program decided which of the 2 clips gets to go on top. You are stating that the editor determines as he's moving the event?"

It's as basic as where you choose to drag it in vertical space - drag it above another clip and it will take viewing precedence drag it below and it will be obscured by the clip above. It's exactly the same as FCP7 ...

... the only difference is that you don't have to "make room" on a spare track for the clip you are moving, and of course you are creating non-destructive overlaps. Does that make sense?

(Probably not!)

Simon Ubsdell
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Herb SevushRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 7:09:34 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] " Does that make sense?"

Totally.

Thanks.

Herb Sevush
Zebra Productions
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nothin' attached to nothin'
"Deciding the spine is the process of editing" F. Bieberkopf


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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 4:40:27 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "So much has been made of the Position tool in these discussion that it seems as though it's been forgotten that the D key (or Edit>Overwrite) is your standard Overwrite mode, no different from FCP or any other NLE. In fact, it's exactly the same and completely unchanged."

Good to know.

[Simon Ubsdell] "[David Cherniack] "Doing insert gap with complex timelines is always going to require some adjustments"

... is now actually not the case with FCPX. I'd say that in 99% of cases there will be no need for repairs or adjustments of any kind (beyond possibly trimming the gap), as everything stays connected exactly where you'd hope it would. (I know it doesn't seem possible or likely but try it and you'll see that it's true.) Accordingly, what used to be a multi-step process in almost every case (some times very many steps indeed), is now a single-step process."


Simon, the most common insert gap operation I do will have audio clips, music and effects, overlapping. I want some of the clips to move with the gap and some to stay stationary. How is the magnetic timeline going to handle that without additional steps? I'm sincerely asking.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:31:47 pm

[David Cherniack] "Simon, the most common insert gap operation I do will have audio clips, music and effects, overlapping. I want some of the clips to move with the gap and some to stay stationary. How is the magnetic timeline going to handle that without additional steps? I'm sincerely asking."

Do check out the thread I mentioned earlier for a more complete explanation. It's precisely in this case of having lots of overlapping clips where the insert gap function is far preferable (in my view) to any other way of going about it. The clip connections (which will be where you want them to be almost by definition will take care of what moves ahead and what stays put.

I'm clearly useless at explaining this point as I have tried several times without success! Unfortunately the best thing is probably to try and see if you can "break it" ;-) I couldn't ...

Simon Ubsdell
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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:56:48 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "Do check out the thread I mentioned earlier for a more complete explanation. It's precisely in this case of having lots of overlapping clips where the insert gap function is far preferable (in my view) to any other way of going about it. The clip connections (which will be where you want them to be almost by definition will take care of what moves ahead and what stays put.

I'm clearly useless at explaining this point as I have tried several times without success! Unfortunately the best thing is probably to try and see if you can "break it" ;-) I couldn't ..."


I checked it out. I'll take your word for it that FCP performs effortlessly over 24 tracks of overlapping audio because of clip connections...assuming you're insering the gap between connected groups. Otherwise how will it know where to spilt the connected group except down the middle? I'd also point out that I can connect the clips in more ancient NLEs like PPro with the group function so deselecting the clips that are not to move is not matter of multiple actions, only one.

Nonetheless I rarely connect clips by groups as the relationship with effects and music is usually subject to change up to and including the final sound edit.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:22:47 pm

[David Cherniack] "I'll take your word for it that FCP performs effortlessly over 24 tracks of overlapping audio because of clip connections...assuming you're insering the gap between connected groups."

I think this is one of those things that's obvious when you see it but hard to verbalize - as I said, I'm clearly hopeless at getting the point across :-(

I'd have said that FCPX would be great at opening gaps however many overlapping clips you asked it to handle - the more overlapping clips the more it's going to score over other methods.

The clips stay where they are meant to stay because of the clip connections - but the clip connections are not something you'd have to think about activating because they would have arisen by default as a result of the editing process.

[David Cherniack] "Otherwise how will it know where to spilt the connected group except down the middle?"

What we are talking about here is a process that specifically doesn't involve splitting anything - it's about keeping the relationships that you have defined without you having to worry about gathering them all up and/or healing broken clips.

Maybe someone else can explain this better than I can as I feel I'm repeating myself and not making anything clearer!

[David Cherniack] "I'd also point out that I can connect the clips in more ancient NLEs like PPro with the group function so deselecting the clips that are not to move is not matter of multiple actions, only one."

The point here surely is that you'd have had to go through and group them which is an action - or more likely several - in itself, and then you'd probably want to undo the group which is another action or set of actions. So it doesn't quite compare for simplicity.

Simon Ubsdell
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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:29:52 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "The clips stay where they are meant to stay because of the clip connections - but the clip connections are not something you'd have to think about activating because they would have arisen by default as a result of the editing process."

So when you add an audio effect that you want in relationship with a video point you don't have to add a connection? If so this software is smarter than me.

BTW You're doing fine with your explanations.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:38:34 pm

[David Cherniack] "So when you add an audio effect that you want in relationship with a video point you don't have to add a connection? If so this software is smarter than me."

Yes, that's exactly what happens - and that connection will stay there unless you choose to break it. Which means that the sound effect will move with the clip - or even, as in my typical scenario, those "15 sound effects and 4 tracks of dialogue" will move with the clip, without my having to make a conscious decision about them during the moving process.

Hence when opening up a gap in the timeline, all the clips forward of the insert point (on the Primary Storyline) will shuffle down, keeping their connections, whereas anything connected before the insert point will stay where they were - even if both sets of such clips overlap the insert point, which I find is the typical scenario.

In fact, I will typically have many, many clips that overlap and probably not a single one that actual cuts where I wan the picture cut to happen. I'm sure you must be very familiar with this situation.

I should clarify that "adding a connection" is a matter of editing using the Q key (or Edit>Connect to Primary Storyline; or dragging a clip to a connected position if you prefer that way of working). It's not an extra process that you have to take account of.

Simon Ubsdell
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Walter SoykaRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:32:18 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "What we are talking about here is a process that specifically doesn't involve splitting anything - it's about keeping the relationships that you have defined without you having to worry about gathering them all up and/or healing broken clips.

Maybe someone else can explain this better than I can as I feel I'm repeating myself and not making anything clearer!"


I'll give it a go.

With FCPX, you explicitly define the relationships between clips when you edit them into the sequence, or re-position them within the sequence. Thereafter, FCPX will maintain those relationships during editorial operations. You may have to manually resolve some non-destructive overlaps, but you'll never have to resolve clips broken by collision.

With FCP7, you place clips absolutely in time, creating implicit relationships that the software has no mechanism to track. If you want to to maintain that relationship during an editorial operation, you'll have to read the timeline yourself, remember or infer the relationships between clips by their placement alone, and make a careful selection to avoid breaking those relationships -- and you have to do this each and every time you perform an edit that may cause a collision.

How'd I do?

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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:37:55 pm

[Walter Soyka] "With FCPX, you explicitly define the relationships between clips when you edit them into the sequence, or re-position them within the sequence. Thereafter, FCPX will maintain those relationships during editorial operations. You may have to manually resolve some non-destructive overlaps, but you'll never have to resolve clips broken by collision.

With FCP7, you place clips absolutely in time, creating implicit relationships that the software has no mechanism to track. If you want to to maintain that relationship during an editorial operation, you'll have to read the timeline yourself, remember or infer the relationships between clips by their placement alone, and make a careful selection to avoid breaking those relationships -- and you have to do this each and every time you perform an edit that may cause a collision.

How'd I do?"


That's clear by me and I've always understood it that way...but Simon has said that X creates the connections as you edit...seems there's a contradition as you say (and I've always understood) the relationships are defined by the editor.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:43:14 pm

[Walter Soyka] "How'd I do?"

You see, I knew you could do express much better than I could!

The only thing I think needs clarifying is this:

[Walter Soyka] "With FCPX, you explicitly define the relationships between clips when you edit them into the sequence"

You might appear to be implying (to someone who didn't have first hand experience of this) that there is some additional process involved in "defining the relationships" but of course it's just a question of editing using the new "Connect to Primary Storyline" (Q) function as against the more familiar editing modes of Insert and Overwrite.

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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 4:26:08 pm

[David Cherniack] "Maybe there's something about the Magnetic timeline I don't grasp. The way I understand it the position tool is the only 'overwrite' function available and it works as an override to the standard rippling mode. If that's correct that's not the same thing as working in overwrite. If it's not, please do correct me."

Just curious, have you used FCPX?

D is the overwrite key.

If you want to replace something that's not in the primary, you replace it with the various replace commands.

I agree with Simon that the magnetic timeline isn't necessarily a deal breaker.


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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 4:56:20 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "I agree with Simon that the magnetic timeline isn't necessarily a deal breaker"

No, I'm definitely not saying it is. Rather I'm only getting the impression that for complex editing it appears to be less efficient than the fixed track model. Others here who also do complex editing, would seem to agree.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:14:15 pm

I guess, what's complex editing in your view? More than 6 tracks of audio?


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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:19:11 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "I guess, what's complex editing in your view? More than 6 tracks of audio?"

It's not the number of tracks though they certainly are a part of it. It's rather the consistent large number of overlapping events, both audio and video layers.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:30:48 pm

[David Cherniack] "It's not the number of tracks though they certainly are a part of it. It's rather the consistent large number of overlapping events, both audio and video layers."

Fcpx allows overlapping events, in fact, it's really good at overlapping.


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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:36:45 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "[David Cherniack] "It's not the number of tracks though they certainly are a part of it. It's rather the consistent large number of overlapping events, both audio and video layers."

Fcpx allows overlapping events, in fact, it's really good at overlapping."


I'm not sure we're talking about the same thing at all.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:41:55 pm

[David Cherniack] "I'm not sure we're talking about the same thing at all."

I know. I'm the idiot around here.

Just because I don't edit features doesn't mean I don't know what overlapping audio/video events and layers are. That's why I asked you what "complex" editing means to you. It sounds just like editing to me, not necessarily "complex".

By its very nature fcpx overlaps. Care to explain what you mean if I am missing something?


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David CherniackRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:24:21 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "I know. I'm the idiot around here.

Just because I don't edit features doesn't mean I don't know what overlapping audio/video events and layers are. That's why I asked you what "complex" editing means to you. It sounds just like editing to me, not necessarily "complex".

By its very nature fcpx overlaps. Care to explain what you mean if I am missing something?"


One thing I'm sure of, Jeremy, is that you are not an idiot.

Before we get boggled down in trying to define complexity I'll accept Simon's experience of FCPx's handling multiple overlaps, especially with audio, with aplomb. I'll only add that complexty is both logistical and visual. The one to one map of the traditional timeline allows instant, relative reference, that simplifies visual complexity and makes it easier to manage logistically. This is what essentially what you're suggesting with zones. I don't think it's a bad idea at all. I've only suggested that de-facto it recreates the traditional timeline ( if done properly ). Could they easily implement it? Who knows? The only thing I do know about NLE development is that almost any change to architecture is a BIG DEAL and can have invisible consequences throughout the system.

David
AllinOneFilms.com


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David LawrenceRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 9:01:18 pm

[David Cherniack] "The only thing I do know about NLE development is that almost any change to architecture is a BIG DEAL and can have invisible consequences throughout the system."

This is exactly right.

There are workarounds for dealing with the magnetic timeline being ripple-mode only. Jeremy's ideas about roles and zones are really interesting and I'd love to see them in action.

But these strategies only address half the problem. There's a much deeper conceptual flaw I see with the magnetic timeline that so far I have not heard anyone fully address -- the idea of a single primary storyline.

The problem is that everything must ultimately be in relationship to the primary. What happens if your piece doesn't have anything primary? What if your piece is driven by multi-channel audio and the relationship driving the piece is fixed time, rather than relative time?

The single primary forces relationships that may have nothing to do with the editor's intentions. For audio-centric workflows, even with the workarounds, usability and efficiency quickly evaporate.

Franz Bieberkopf said it perfectly in another thread:

[Franz Bieberkopf] "Deciding the spine is the process of editing."

I think Apple's engineers made a fundamental conceptual error when they assumed that editors work along a "primary" storyline and add "secondary" material. The biggest limitations of the magnetic timeline come from inherent design decisions that are drawn from this assumption. Unless they can be adequately addressed, I don't see how FCPX will be viable for complex workflows that demand unlimited flexibility in the kinds of editorial relationships that an editor might imagine or need.

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Craig SeemanRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 9:18:41 pm

I'd love for someone to describe a workflow where the primary storyline is a problem although I don't doubt they exist.

I do think one option would be to have the option of Clip Connections connecting to something other than the Primary Storyline. This would mean clips could travel with Secondary Storylines for example. Granted at that point one might have to have a means of color coding the connections for example.

This would move FCPX into a more nodal form of editing.



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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 10:10:05 am

[Craig Seeman] "I do think one option would be to have the option of Clip Connections connecting to something other than the Primary Storyline. This would mean clips could travel with Secondary Storylines for example. Granted at that point one might have to have a means of color coding the connections for example.

This would move FCPX into a more nodal form of editing."


I very much agree.

On a related note, it would be nice to see them remove the tyranny of the one "primary" storyline and make it more of a democracy where all storylines were equal, rather than that secondaries were second-class citizens with reduced options. (The ability to make 3-point edits into all storylines equally - entailing some kind of edit destination selection option - and of course make In/Out selections as opposed to having to rely on the range tool, seem like really important requirements.)

I very much like your notion of a more nodal system within the timeline - that I think would be a genuine advance with powerful possibilities.

Simon Ubsdell
Director/Editor/Writer
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Steve ConnorRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 10:25:35 pm

[David Lawrence] "But these strategies only address half the problem. There's a much deeper conceptual flaw I see with the magnetic timeline that so far I have not heard anyone fully address -- the idea of a single primary storyline.

The problem is that everything must ultimately be in relationship to the primary. What happens if your piece doesn't have anything primary? What if your piece is driven by multi-channel audio and the relationship driving the piece is fixed time, rather than relative time?

The single primary forces relationships that may have nothing to do with the editor's intentions. For audio-centric workflows, even with the workarounds, usability and efficiency quickly evaporate."


The fascinating conceptual arguments continue, some very interesting points being raised. Could I add some actual editing experience with FCPX to the conversation?

I have just completed my 10th commercial project on FCPX, they have been a mix of long-form event documentary. Corporate case studies, conference highlight videos and talking heads videos, primarily for blue chip companies such as IBM.

These have been a mix of styles, interview led, music led and scripted and at NO point has FCPX stopped me, or considerably delayed me, from creatively editing these projects as I wanted.

Having a primary and secondary storyline approach hasn't been an issue, When I haven't wanted to have a "spine" I've simply put in a slug on the primary to length and worked entirely in secondaries. There are other differences of course and occasionally I have had to stop and work out how to achieve what I wanted, but only in the same way that I would have to when I infrequently have to cut on Avid. Now I understand much more about the software I am cutting faster than I did on FCP7

I'm lucky that I don't have clients sitting over my shoulder so I've been able to put the time in, but my actual experience with FCPX has been very positive and in my opinion there is a lot less to fear than some may think if you approach editing on it with an open mind and you actually take the time to learn it. I've actually enjoyed the whole learning process of it.

"My Name is Steve and I'm an FCPX user"


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:37:42 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "Fcpx allows overlapping events, in fact, it's really good at overlapping."

I'd say it's better at handling overlapping events than anything else I've come across - the greater the complexity the more powerful the FCPX solution becomes ...

... in this instance ;-)

I do think perhaps the "complexity" David is referencing is of a different kind and I'd agree that there are types of complexity that it doesn't (yet?) handle well - in particular the issue you are valiantly trying to address which is the "visual clutter" of the audio department of the timeline. I think there is probably a solution to this (and yours have been very interesting) but currently it does represent one of the bigger interface hurdles - for larger and more complex projects.

So there are some kinds of complexity that FCPX is good at and others where it's still significantly weak.

Simon Ubsdell
Director/Editor/Writer
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Walter SoykaRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:41:36 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "So there are some kinds of complexity that FCPX is good at and others where it's still significantly weak."

Well said! Magnetism (clip relationships) in the timeline is really powerful -- but the self-collapsing (trackless) view is really maddening.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Morten RanmarRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 6:57:29 am

As long as there is no manual reconnect to clips that have gone off- line or been moved, IMHO this is NEVER gonna be a liable choice for the pro.

- No Parking Production -

2 x Finalcut Studio3, 2 x MacPro, 2 x ioHD, File Server w. X-Raid
.... and FCPX in the garbage bin


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alban eggerRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 2:36:45 pm

Well, there are two major tools missing: multicam and external viewing. Interestingly these two are the ones Apple has pre-announced.

Many of the things asked for are either not possible as some want them (because this is X not 7) or are already possible via third party workaround (X27 -OMF out, Color etc) or are hopefully in development (audio needs tons of work).
For me 7 is dead unless it is an old project. I have also transferred a few legacy projects to X. The customer-wished changes are often minor and I just feel already more comfortable and quicker in X.

What the majority of larger post-houses needs are hardware interfaces to decks and a industry adoption of FCPXML.


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Rafael AmadorRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 3:17:49 pm

[John Davidson] "
Every time I get a 'out of memory' error on FCP7, I get a little more ticked with Apple about FCPX"


If you are getting "Out of memory" errors, you should have visited the COWs FCP Forum.
Most "Out of memory" error I've met were operator errors.
The last errors due to System/FCP where on the 8/12 cores MP when managing XDCAM stuff. That was some three years ago and they were silently fixed by Apple.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Bret WilliamsRe: What would it take?
by on Nov 4, 2011 at 6:03:25 am

In my experience, out of memory errors are 99% of the time due to a still with either the x or y dimension in the 4000 pixel range. With clients supplying 12+ megapixel jpegs it happens more frequently than ever.


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Oliver PetersRe: What would it take?
by on Nov 4, 2011 at 2:04:10 pm

[Bret Williams] "99% of the time due to a still"

That's not the only case. I hit it quite a lot with various ProRes, ProResHQ and ProRes4444 sequences. No stills. Generally it's when you have multiple sequences open. FCP 7 has simply been exceeded by the types of media we throw at it these days. It seems to have gotten worse with more recent OS updates.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Walter SoykaRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 23, 2011 at 5:45:23 pm

Jeremy, I suggested grouping tracks as a way of reconciling magnetic collision avoidance in a hard-tracked system -- then Michael Gissing told me I had re-invented clip layering which DAWs have had for ages.

I think your zones idea is brilliant, with the same flexibility as clip layering but more consistency with FCPX's design, and I hope you send Apple this feature request.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 2:59:41 pm

[Walter Soyka] "I think your zones idea is brilliant, with the same flexibility as clip layering but more consistency with FCPX's design, and I hope you send Apple this feature request."

Yes, I will give it a whirl. I will probably send something more generic like, "...it would be great if we could have a bit more visual organization control of our audio clips below the primary storyline."

Fingers crossed.

THanks for the comment, by the way. Brilliance is in the eye of the beholder, or something like that. :)

Jeremy


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 3:37:09 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "Yes, I will give it a whirl. I will probably send something more generic like, "...it would be great if we could have a bit more visual organization control of our audio clips below the primary storyline.""

I'd have to agree that your zones idea is a cracker - hopefully they'll think the same in Cupertino!

Thinking about this whole issue of organizing your audio visually, I have been coming round to the conclusion that for now one of the better ways of doing this would be the judicious use of secondary storylines.

There could be a numnber of benefits to working more in this way.

First of all, while editing audio in the primary storyline is pretty straightforward, it is definitely compromised when trying to edit audio within the realm of connected clips. Obviously, in the most basic scenarios the primary storyline will take care of most of your audio editing needs but outside the simplest cases there is a clear need to edit audio efficiently outside that single realm. Music editing is obviously going to be the prime example here, where speed and finesse are critical.

Trying to edit audio down among the connected clips has slightly the feel of trying to juggle with eels - in time you could become a skilled eel juggler but it doesn't feel like a skill worth devoting too much time to if there's another way. In particular as far as I am concerned, the inability to simply overwrite one clip with another in this realm is a tiresome drawback. Editing music for example usually requires the ability to slide one clip against another, overwriting or extending around the edit point as required with a single action. If you try moving connected clips against each other for the same effect, you'll get one clip slipping out of the way precisely to avoid its getting eaten up by the clip you are moving - or conversely, moving it apart will open up a gap. Either way you will have to "repair" the edit by trimming or extending. OK, so it's only a few extra actions but who wants more actions? We are always hunting for ways of using fewer.

Another way for me is to group the audio that I'm currently working on into a secondary storyline (not a compound clip where its inner workings are going to be hidden away from the main timeline, which is too much of a disadvantage for me). In the secondary storyline, most of the advantages of the primary storyline are restored and you can indeed go back to sliding your clips against each other in the traditional way. And you get the advantage of being able to ripple edit without affecting anything anywhere else - again great for music editing.

What would be great for me is if secondary storylines had all the functionality of the primary storyline and none of the restrictions that currently with them. It would be great for instance to be able to connect clips within the secondary - and not have to Open in Timeline to do so (nesting behaviours, though useful, are really not good for editing generally because they require you to edit "out-of-context").

What secondaries also give you is a measure of visual control that is otherwise lacking among connected clips (as you've been discussing), so that for example I can keep all the clips that belong in one music edit (there could be several within the one cue) together in one place.

There is a sense in which secondaries are already virtual tracks, more so in fact in relation to audio than video. They can also be broken apart as necessary so you never need to be locked into one organizational system if you don't want. (It would be really helpful if you could have an Overwrite to Secondary Storyline command, as well as the Lift from Secondary Storyline - but I can see how this might be complicated in practice.)

I think expanding the capabilities of secondaries, or rather implementing a system where the secondaries share all the characteristics of the primary would really open a lot of possibilities and reduce some of the limitations.

Simon Ubsdell
Director/Editor/Writer
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Oliver PetersRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 3:49:56 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "What would be great for me is if secondary storylines had all the functionality of the primary storyline and none of the restrictions that currently with them."

I completely agree, but isn't that what a "track" is?

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 3:56:34 pm

[Oliver Peters] "I completely agree, but isn't that what a "track" is?"

Exactly! I don't think we ever quite realized what brilliant organizational tools tracks actually are until Apple opened our eyes to it by taking them away ;-)

I suppose I'm just looking at secondaries as a way of getting back some of their benefits in some form ...

Simon Ubsdell
Director/Editor/Writer
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 4:03:44 pm

Nice work, Simon.

[Simon Ubsdell] "Thinking about this whole issue of organizing your audio visually, I have been coming round to the conclusion that for now one of the better ways of doing this would be the judicious use of secondary storylines."

Completely, look here at this pic. They aren't tracks, but you can see what's going on, and this is too simple of an example, but I think people can get the idea:



The problem is, if you start extending secondaries out for long distances, they won't follow the clips above them, which could be a problem.

[Simon Ubsdell] "There is a sense in which secondaries are already virtual tracks, more so in fact in relation to audio than video. They can also be broken apart as necessary so you never need to be locked into one organizational system if you don't want. (It would be really helpful if you could have an Overwrite to Secondary Storyline command, as well as the Lift from Secondary Storyline - but I can see how this might be complicated in practice.)"

Just curious as why the "replace" functions won't work as overwrite for you? I also think your lift from Secondary is cool, and would also fit the Craig's "connect to something else besides the primary" idea.

Good show,

Jeremy


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Simon UbsdellRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 4:20:26 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "
Just curious as why the "replace" functions won't work as overwrite for you?"


It would be nice to be able to restore or add a group of connected clips to a secondary in the same way that you can Lift them from the secondary.

Actually it would be nice to be able to use Overwrite to Primary Storyline with audio clips and not just video - why can't you "Lift from" but not "Overwrite to"?. Not sure why this isn't already implemented ...

As for Replace, I'm not a big fan of the options - I'd far sooner have a traditional Replace edit option (sync to playhead) than what we've got. Replace from Start/End seem to me to have limited value compared to this (there just basic 3-point edit options really), and the notion that the default Replace behaviour is to ripple the clip to the duration of the new one strikes me as very eccentric, though I can see how it might have the occasional use.

Simon Ubsdell
Director/Editor/Writer
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Jeremy GarchowRe: What would it take?
by on Oct 24, 2011 at 4:57:54 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "As for Replace, I'm not a big fan of the options - I'd far sooner have a traditional Replace edit option (sync to playhead) than what we've got."

I miss the playhead replace too. I see what they want us to do in the current implementation, but it'd be nice to just be able to replace "from this frame", "at that frame" and know what would happen with the rest of the clip. I think a "replace from playhead" feature is completely necessary.

I find just the "Replace" function to be an overwrite of sorts, but doesn't destroy the rest of the timeline. I do agree that we need some sort of "target" system to that the Primary controls will work in secondaries as they do in primary. Maybe there's a good reason they don't and I'm just missing it.

More feedback to Apple! :)

Jeremy


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