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So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X

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Neil Sadwelkar
So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 20, 2011 at 4:10:39 am

I'm asking this on a Blackmagic forum because the FCP and FCP X forum has worn this topic thin. I'm finding out from the point of view of someone who uses FCP with a Blackmagic card and needs the card for video monitoring, tape capture and output, or maybe live video playout.

After FCP X, which I don't want to knock as an editing software, but as a software that (still) does not support a capture card.

So, for anyone who gave up on FCP and switched to Adobe Premiere on a Mac with a Blackmagic card sitting in it...

How is Premiere 5.5.1 as a replacement for FCP 7? Surely it won't do everything that FCP does, and definitely does some things that FCP cannot do. But overall, is it business as usual? Has it helped you get back to, or stay in, business. Do your clients ask? Or Care what software is used to cut their movies. Are you taking more or less time editing a movie, docu or short, with Premiere?

I don't mind if this post has not one single response, because that is also a valid (and helpful) response.

-----------------------------------
Neil Sadwelkar
neilsadwelkar.blogspot.com
twitter: fcpguru
FCP Editor, Edit systems consultant
Mumbai India


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Scott Francis
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 20, 2011 at 12:09:12 pm

I am not a FCP user, but am amazed at how many FCP users think that their software does something that other do not. I have used Sony Vegas for 6 versions and although it has it's hiccups (as any software does), it supports SO many hardware devices, file formats and edits extremely well. Some Apple proponents seem to think a PC or other editing software are "incapable" of doing what there machine or FCP do. This is just not the case, Vegas, Premiere, and others do a darn good job, and even though they do not operate the same as FCP (every software has it's own naming system and ways of doing things), they can give you the same "results" that FCP can. That being said, FCP has it's good points and Apple did you all a great disservice by removing many of the things (such as hardware support and numerous other things) from X. The sad thing is, if you need hardware support you have to go somewhere else. Premiere is a good place to look if you have to stay only on the Mac OS, if you are willing to bootcamp it and use Vegas, I can say you should be happy. In my mind, all NLE's can get the job done, if a client want's you to use a certain tool to make their movie, that is like asking a carpenter to use a certain hammer to build your house (in my opinion). The only issues there may be is working with FCP file types, but there are ways to remedy that. Well this is just my 2 cents, I hope I was not condescending, that was not my intention, just that there are more than just ONE NLE that can get a job done....thanks for listening to my rant...and good luck!!
Regards

Scott Francis
Mind's Eye Audio/Video Productions


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John Pale
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 20, 2011 at 2:05:05 pm

Neil,

Adobe Premiere Pro CS 5.5 is very good software. It will seem familiar to most FCP classic users and you can get up to speed on the differences very quickly.

The downside is that until recently, it had few Mac users. The drivers and integration with Blackmagic and AJA on the Mac side are not as mature. There are performance and stability issues in PPro with users of both major card makers on the Mac (I have no personal knowledge of Matrox products with PPro on the Mac). Hopefully that will get ironed out over ther course of the year.


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Bob Zelin
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 20, 2011 at 2:24:26 pm

Hi Neil -
yes, Adobe CS5 is teriffic, works with Blackmagic and AJA, and can do the same job. You know what is happening here - people learn one thing, and they say "oh no, I can't learn anything else !!!!!". Let's face it, almost everyone was an AVID editor at one time, and then FCP came along. AVID is still great, and will support AJA and Blackmagic with the new release. And of course CS5. And yes, Sony Vegas works, GVG Edius works, and there are others. The world does not revolve around FCP 7. That's like saying if there was no more XSAN or Final Cut Server, there would be no more shared storage, or no more asset management. This is rediculous.

There is no single manufacturer that controls the video business - not Sony, not Panasonic, and certainly not Apple.

Bob Zelin



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David Willey
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 20, 2011 at 5:11:41 pm

I am in the process of switching from FCP to PPro and have a DeckLink SDI card attached to a Flanders Scientific monitor. I really am enjoying editing in PPro, love the layout, how it works with AE, and the interface. I plan on staying with it for quite a while. I have edited with Avid, Media 100, FCP and even the Video Toaster (yes, I am getting old).

While I like PPro I am having a ton of crashes. It can happen anytime. Open the program, make an edit, switch between programs, or breathe wrong. I'm sorting through the issues right now. FCP and AE work with just fine.

I am only at CS 5.0.4 right now and will be upgrading to 5.5 soon. I also have an ATI Radeon HD 4870 video card (512MB RAM) installed. The Mac Pro is version 4.1 a 2.93 Quad-Core Xeon with 16GB RAM, OS 10.6.4. I have updated all of the drivers to the current versions. I am going to upgrade the video card to a NVIDIA Quatro 4000 (2GB RAM)to take advantage of CUDA and in hopes that the crashes will go away.

So, I am having issues, but when PPro works the monitor out looks great. It works everywhere it is supposed to. I hope this helps.


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Tom Fuldner
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 20, 2011 at 5:47:35 pm

David,

I made the same transitions from FCP7/X to Premiere Pro CS5/Production Premium a few months ago. I too am very pleased with PP, though I may be more fortunate in not having experienced the frequency of crashes you describe. I'm running the application suite on a MacPro 3.1 with 32GB RAM.

More recently, I also installed the NVIDIA Quadro 4000 card to replace my ATI 4870. It's been a mixed blessing. The Quadro card makes Premiere Pro sing on the MacPro. No ifs and or buts -- until you add After Effects to the mix. When adding AE segments to a PP timeline, the opacity of AE segments gets hanky. Basic opacity transitions and the head and tail of a lower third super created in AE an inserted in PP lose their opacity and take on a white-color background instead. Also, diagonal shapes created in AE manifest jagged edges.

After making these discoveries, I replaced the ATI card and the issues went away. I'm using the latest NVIDA drivers and running Lion. I may reinstall the Quadro in a few months if new drivers provide a cure. In the mean time, the joy of real speed in PP is utterly compromised by problems encountered in AE. I realize the Quadro card doesn't provide a speed edge for AE as it does in PP, but it should at least work properly.

Tom

Tom F.
Raleigh, NC


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David Willey
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 20, 2011 at 6:55:09 pm

Tom, that's very disheartening. I would not have expected to hear of that issue from AE. I also make tons of GFX in AE and that would be a real downer. Did you try rendering everything out of AE and placing in PPro like we had to in FCP? I wonder if that would fix the opacity issue. You would still have the speed of the 4000 but the pain of the extra step with AE.

I have to say one of the features I like best about PPro is the Browser. I like the direct link to my drives from inside the software and if I create something in AE of Photoshop it's right there (at lease the way I organize my folders) ready to be brought in.

I really think my issues are mostly with the Decklink SDI card and not the ATI, but I'm working on it.

Thanks for the note,
David


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Tom Fuldner
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 20, 2011 at 7:03:59 pm

David,

I must confess I don't know if exporting AE projects we do/did in FCP7 will resolve opacity issues. I've resisted experimenting because I so much prefer being able to move quickly between PP and AE. As to the tearing/aliasing I've experienced using AE with the Quadro 4000 card, it's evident even before leaving AE.

Tom

Tom F.
Raleigh, NC


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David Willey
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 20, 2011 at 7:35:05 pm

Then I guess it's best to stick with what you are doing and hope Blackmagic has an update soon to fix the issue. I also guess I'll wait to upgrade until the bugs are worked out. BUMMER!!!

Meredith Integrated Marketing
Des Moines, IA


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Danny Hays
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 21, 2011 at 7:28:42 am

CS5 works good, on a Mac or a PC. I don't use Premier since I'm a Vegas Pro user but I do use After Effects. I capture 1080p60 on a TM700 and Vegas Pro, CS5 Premier and After Effects can edit these native .mts files on my i7 PCs and my i7 Mac mini without any problems what so ever. I've tried FCP and Avid and can't see what the big deal is. I can edit way faster and with more formats and framerates with Vegas.



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Tom Fuldner
Quadro 4000 works in AE!
on Sep 24, 2011 at 3:34:11 am

Today at last, the Quadro 4000 works in PP and AE! I found a new driver dated 9 Sep 11 on the NVIDIA Web site, "cudadriver-4-1.0.50." Good news/bad news: the issues I had with opacity on existing PP/AE projects remains. I started a new test project from scratch: no opacity problems, no aliasing. When and if I have to work on older projects started with the ATI card, I'll have to switch back to the old card.

I can live with this. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Tom

Tom F.
Raleigh, NC


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David Willey
Re: So then, is there really an alternative to FCP after FCP X
on Sep 21, 2011 at 8:03:34 pm

And the culprit is... the Decklink SDI card. I pulled the thing out and Premiere works great, no crashing issues today at all. It works just as stable as FCP. I wish I had a better video card, like a Quatro 400 to take advantage of CUDA, but that has issues as well.

I really hope Blackmagic is listening and working on firmware/drivers that will work without crashing. I miss my monitor!

I would say Premiere is a good replacement for FCP. I am saving a ton of time working with the native .mxf files (no log and transfer process YEAH!!!) The editing work flow is fine, it's just buttons placed differently, I'm still telling the same story. My clients/employers don't care a hoot about what I edit on, just that I keep cranking out material.

If I have one complaint it's that not all of my plug-ins work in Premiere. I have a bunch of transitions that were easy to plop in and now they do not work. But that is another topic.

Meredith Integrated Marketing
Des Moines, IA


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