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The FCPX Sweet Spot?

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Mark Halloran
The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 2:16:34 pm

Count me among those who started off as a hater, and is coming around to like FCPX for a very specific few types of projects. I'm wondering if others have found similar sweet spots:

I work in a large multi-site teaching hospital, editing everything from training videos on blood drawing to CEO interviews to marketing pieces. I report to people who do not care what editing tool I use but care a great deal about deadlines.

I switched from FCP7to Premiere Pro CS5 as my primary editing tool this past fall. But I'm finding that FCPX is awesome for cutting quick interviews when Web/intranet delivery is the destination. My FCPX sweet spot is interview and training projects that are <5 minutes and don't involve complex graphics. For everything else, it's PPCS5. Without multicam capability or the ability to handle hour-long shows that require me to work with 40 hours or more of raw footage, things are likely to stay this way for quite awhile.

My guess is that people who edit on multiple systems will find at least one sweet spot for FCPX.

As an all-purpose go-to app, fugetaboutit. At least for now and for me. But have any of you come to appreciate it as a limited use specialty app?


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Steve Connor
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 5:23:19 pm

Why don't you think it can handle hour long shows?, I've done two 120 minute shows on it with 40 hours of footage for each show. FCPX enables you to get through large amounts of footage very quickly. I've just loaded 2500 clips for a feature project.

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


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Oliver Peters
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 5:38:14 pm

[Steve Connor] " I've done two 120 minute shows on it with 40 hours of footage for each show"

Out of curiosity, how did you deal with the inevitable large number of projects (timelines) that this type of editing creates? What strategies did you use to avoid the project bloat and slow downs that have been frequently mentioned by many in various threads here.

- Oliver

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


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Steve Connor
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 5:59:29 pm

I kept the projects to a maximum length of 20-30 minutes whils editing and then copied and pasted into a final project at the end. FCPX, like earlier versions of FCP, does slow down if you try and edit in a project over about 30 minutes. I ended up with about 15 projects in each event. I also exported projects as I finished each piece as a back up.

The shows had a lot of CC in each project and this didn't seem to cause any slowdown. I always kept background rendering switched off as it seems to be the number 1 cause of problems.

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


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Oliver Peters
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 6:07:27 pm

[Steve Connor] "I ended up with about 15 projects in each event"

So you built the projects in the Event rather than the Project Browser?

[Steve Connor] "I always kept background rendering switched off"

Me, too. I don't find it to be helpful.

Was your media imported (copied) in the Event or linked as aliases? Did you use the proxy workflow?

- Oliver

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


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Steve Connor
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 6:16:39 pm

I just linked footage and didn't use proxies. I'm trying to get permission from the Producer of the feature I'm cutting to post some workflow videos as we go through the edit on it.

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


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Mark Halloran
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 6:14:27 pm

Why don't you think it can handle hour long shows?

I've encountered the same frustrations as many others on this forum: Performance and the need for multiple timelines. In my particular case, the very long shows I need to cut involve multicam as well as some intricate audio sync. I depend on PluralEyes and Presto-- neither of which is FCPX ready. (although the former is in beta).

I'd be interested to know what it is about FCPX (shortcomings aside) that makes it preferable to PP . Organization? Interface?

I find that the magnetic timeline enables me to blast through our typical talking head/ soundbite edits quickly and easily. The interface took some getting used to, but I personally have come to enjoy the way it's built for speed. I suppose that so many years of FCP7 make me much more at home on the PP interface. If I were new to editing, I'd probably find the FCPX interface more intuitive.


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Mark Dobson
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 6:50:37 pm

[Steve Connor] "Why don't you think it can handle hour long shows?, I've done two 120 minute shows on it with 40 hours of footage for each show. FCPX enables you to get through large amounts of footage very quickly. I've just loaded 2500 clips for a feature project.
"


Steve I'm impressed with the project length you are dealing with. Could you let me know what kind of Mac you are using and how complex the edit is?


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Steve Connor
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 7:00:59 pm

2008 8 core Mac Pro with 16GB Ram and Radeon 5870 card. Footage was a mix of XDcam 422, XDcam EX and GoPro mp4's. No footage was optimised. They were not graphically complex shows, basically air show event documentaries, maximum of 3 layers in some places, just name captions on interviewees, colour correction on most clips.

Had 3 or 4 crashes a day, never lost an edit but I was constantly checking for the undo bug.

Also I am using Snow Leopard, I firmly believe that FCPX has more problems under Lion than SL

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


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Mark Dobson
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 7:21:20 pm

[Steve Connor] "2008 8 core Mac Pro with 16GB Ram and Radeon 5870 card. Footage was a mix of XDcam 422, XDcam EX and GoPro mp4's. "

Thanks for that info seems to be about the same setup that I have except at the moment I only have 10Gb Ram - thought I had 14? - but somethings gone amiss, maybe my brain.

[Steve Connor] "Also I am using Snow Leopard, I firmly believe that FCPX has more problems under Lion than SL"

Well maybe that's where some of the problems I encounter come from. But I had more issue under SL - but then I was also running FCP7 on the same partition.

I found the undo problem better recently but am still getting odd crashes after some pretty mundane activities.

When I have a lot of time I'll maybe do a fresh install on SL on a spare partition and see if things run more smoothly.

I guess another question is do you reference your files or import them into FCPX?

It would be great to see your workflow if you get permission.


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Jim Giberti
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 18, 2011 at 12:46:22 am

[Mark Dobson] "I firmly believe that FCPX has more problems under Lion than SL""

Given our experience, I'd agree. I've been cutting one project after another for a couple of months now and have yet to have fcpX crash in SL 10.6.8


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tony west
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 18, 2011 at 2:45:32 pm

[Steve Connor] "Also I am using Snow Leopard, I firmly believe that FCPX has more problems under Lion than SL
"



I really think this is the key.

I recently went over to a friend's house to show him and his son some short cuts for X on their new 27inch imac.

I could tell right off the bat that X was very buggy on their system with lion. I have been working on X since it came out on my 8 core mac pro with SL and have not really had any crashes since the first and second updates.

The only annoying problem I have is the skimmer goes away after a while. My work around is to hit the project folder icon to open the projects and then reopen the project that I'm working on.

That works every time (but a pain).

For folks that don't like the skimmer they might not catch this and I think it leads to save problems if that skimmer stops working. It's kind of a tipoff.

I turned off background rendering on their lion right off the bat and explained to them why, but even having that off I saw a couple of beach balls.

X runs crappy on Lion. I saw that first hand. Runs smoother on SL and I think that has a lot to do with why so many people have different views on the performance of the program.

If I had only seen this thing run on Lion I might have tossed it in the the trash myself.


The funny thing is I have not switched to lion under protest of the new look.
I know it sounds petty but I HATE the new grayed out folders.

I hated when they did it in itunes and now they have gone even farther with it.

The colors help me find the icons faster at a glance.

I refuse to use lion until they give me an option to change the icons and now, until it runs X better.

Get it together Apple!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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tony west
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 19, 2011 at 8:19:09 pm

[tony west] "X runs crappy on Lion"


Scratch this, they were running version 10.0 and had not updated yet.


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Franz Bieberkopf
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 17, 2011 at 5:36:57 pm

Mark,

I'd be interested to know what it is about FCPX (shortcomings aside) that makes it preferable to PP . Organization? Interface?

Franz.


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Mark Morache
Re: The FCPX Sweet Spot?
on Dec 20, 2011 at 4:40:12 am

Mark... I'm with Steve. Why limit yourself to the quick edits?

Now I'm generally editing 4-6 minute tv stories, with up to 2 hours of raw tape, but I'd be anxious to try X for longer, more ambitious projects.

I was recently given a hard drive with 16 hours of P2 footage. I used FCP7 to create timecode files for the producer, but I took all of the footage and created my FCX event, keywording and identifying like crazy, and it's brilliant. It is so easy to find specific clips, and I'm loving the filmstrip viewing more and more.

I'm still afraid of something becoming corrupted or going offline, and I'm creating frequent backups so I don't lose all of my editing.

There are a buttload of improvements they need to make, and I'm still dealing with it's buggy issues, but overall, I'm enjoying using it for everything, and when people watch me edit with it, their it's so much fun to watch their eyes get big!

I'd love to change over our entire shop to X, and enjoy the ride as they add back much of what has been lost with the switch away from FCP7.

I'm gunshy about Apple however. Their unwillingness to "come clean" with their intentions keeps me very leary of their plans for the future. I believe they intended this to be a pro app, but they clearly let things get out of hand.

---------
FCX. She tempts me, abuses me, beats me up, makes me feel worthless, then in the end she comes around, helps me get my work done, gives me hope and I can't stop thinking about her.

Mark Morache
Avid/Xpri/FCP7/FCX
Evening Magazine,Seattle, WA
http://fcpx.wordpress.com


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