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Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters

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Gerry Fraiberg
Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 16, 2014 at 9:22:06 pm

As always, I enjoy reading Oliver's musings.

"If you are looking for alternatives to a Creative Cloud-based production toolkit, then it’s easy to build your own combination with some very inexpensive solutions."

http://digitalfilms.wordpress.com/2014/05/16/final-cut-studio-2014/



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Darren Roark
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 16, 2014 at 9:50:59 pm

My favorite quote

"If you square off Premiere Pro against Final Cut Pro X, then it really boils down to tracks versus trackless. Both tools get the job done."

Sounds like dialogue from a tough guy movie and is a great way to boil it all down.


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Oliver Peters
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 17, 2014 at 12:03:42 am

[Darren Roark] "Sounds like dialogue from a tough guy movie and is a great way to boil it all down."

LOL. Thanks.

- Oliver

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


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David Mathis
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 17, 2014 at 12:46:28 am

Just read the article and found it a very informative read. Not a huge fan of Pixelmator as it does not offer any non-destructive tools. At the same time, however, you could build a nice, simple background. Have considered the basic Photoshop package but it seems to lack of some the high-end tools as well, though to a lesser degree.

I just love Resolve for what it can do and certainly look forward to the next version. Looks solid and ready for it to be available.

I do like Motion as well but for doing particles After Effects and Trapcode Particular have no equal. Those tools are much more flexible and powerful. Love the fact that lights can be used as an emitter and expressions give you much more power that Motion has. On the flip side, the fact that Motion can do so much, at such a low price makes it almost a necessary tool to have.

Thank you Peter for the article, very useful.


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Bret Williams
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 17, 2014 at 3:34:17 am

He left out the Illustrator component. iDraw is even closer to Illustrator than Pixelmator is to photoshop. Although just like PS, no high end tools.

Funny that this article came out on the DAY I cancelled my Adobe CC membership. I agree with every word and have posted many of the ideas before. I own CS5 Master collection. It still works. Most templates out there are designed to work on CS5 or even earlier. It can do most of what I need. And I'm learning Motion.

We also have Pixelmator and Photoshop Elements. To me, an NLE is where you assemble all these pieces. Premiere, FCPX, and probably resolve 11 are all fine choices. AE is going to be the tough one to lose. I assume I'll be renting it here and again for $29 if I can't make CS5 work or if I'm still not as comfortable with motion. But I figured the best way to get there was to cut the cord. I suggest that anyone in a position to do so do the same. Even if you sign right back up in a month. At least it sends a message.

Here's my FCP X "studio" package. Believe it or not Launchpad is good for something!



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David Mathis
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 3:44:48 pm

Just took a look at iDraw, not yet made a purchase but it looks very user friendly. This could be a nice addition to Motion for doing a fun title sequence. Have not heard of Ink Scape before so not sure how that would fit into a workflow. Since there is no "Send To Motion" feature just wondering about how will Clip Exporter will fit in. Could not find it in the App store.

So far my Studio consists of:

Final Cut Pro 10.1.1
Motion 5.1
Resolve (full version) 10.1.5
Pixelmator
7 to X
Red Giant Universe
Blackmagic Media Express
Blackmagic Camera Utility
Blackmagic Cinema Camera
Ultrascope

Will be adding Hit Film and Compressor later this year.

The only thing I am subscribed to is the Red Giant Universe, so far smooth sailing and great customer support.


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Oliver Peters
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 5:34:38 pm

[David Mathis] "Since there is no "Send To Motion" feature just wondering about how will Clip Exporter will fit in. Could not find it in the App store."

It's free. Merely scroll down on the "recent posts" sidebar for more info ;-)

http://digitalfilms.wordpress.com/2014/05/01/using-fcp-x-with-adobe-cc/

- Oliver

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


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David Mathis
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 6:26:26 pm

Excellent. Have you had any experience with iDraw? Looking at that is well.


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Oliver Peters
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 6:49:26 pm

[David Mathis] "Have you had any experience with iDraw"

No. Only other apps I've used like that are on the iPad and that's not a good comparison. I worked with Painter awhile back and it's nice, as well. It's just a bit different mindset than Photoshop. You might also look at current versions of Graphic Converter.

- Oliver

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


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Mitch Ives
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 10:41:03 pm

Oliver,

Nice article. And a timely one since I've been working to be CC free.

I did see today that iDraw just got a big update, even though the version number doesn't seem like it would be a big one...

Mitch Ives
Insight Productions Corp.

"Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things." - Winston Churchill


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 6:49:49 pm
Last Edited By Simon Ubsdell on May 19, 2014 at 7:07:01 pm

As always a really great round-up from Oliver.

One thing that I might add to what he says is that surprisingly Motion is actually a really useful replacement for Photoshop, especially for those frustrated by some of the limitations of Pixelmator.

As Oliver mentions, Pixelmator "does not include some of Photoshop CC’s power user features, like smart objects, smart filters, 3D, layer groups and video manipulation". With the exception of 3D (how many users actually bother with it in Photoshop?), all of those features are effectively present in Motion.

It is incidentally pretty easy to replicate Photoshop's layer styles in Motion with a few simple tricks - which is probably the one thing that most users wouldn't realise.

I used to use Photoshop a great deal more than I do these days until it occurred to me that a huge number of the tasks I was using it for were lot easier and more quickly achieved in Motion. The only tasks that I find easier in Motion are painting (obviously) and occasionally matte extraction where you need to actually paint into the mask. (But even that is more habit than necessity because it's perfectly possible to do complex matte extraction in Motion.)

A lot of its other features now strike me as hopelessly clunky ... and that's speaking as someone who enjoyed working in Photoshop more than almost anything else.

OK, so it's probably not going to be for everybody - but it works for me.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Steve Connor
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 7:13:46 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "As Oliver mentions, Pixelmator "does not include some of Photoshop CC’s power user features, like smart objects, smart filters, 3D, layer groups and video manipulation". With the exception of 3D (how many users actually bother with it in Photoshop?), all of those features are effectively present in Motion.

It is incidentally pretty easy to replicate Photoshop's layer styles in Motion with a few simple tricks - which is probably the one thing that most users wouldn't realise."


What an interesting tutorial that would make (hint, hint)!

Steve Connor
Mellowing slowly


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 8:35:58 pm

[Steve Connor] "What an interesting tutorial that would make (hint, hint)!"

Now you mention it ...

;-)

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Final Cut Studio 2014 - Creating Photoshop Layer Styles in Motion
on May 20, 2014 at 2:44:47 pm
Last Edited By Simon Ubsdell on May 20, 2014 at 5:11:40 pm

[Steve Connor] "It is incidentally pretty easy to replicate Photoshop's layer styles in Motion with a few simple tricks - which is probably the one thing that most users wouldn't realise."

What an interesting tutorial that would make (hint, hint)!"








Something like this.



Not at all hard to achieve and because you're building the tools yourself you have much more flexibility than if you're stuck with some of the limitations of Photoshop layer styles.



And of course it's much easier to build animated effects into the "layer style".

You could even publish a whole range of controls for use inside FCP X so it's quite an interesting route to go down.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Final Cut Studio 2014 - Tutorial "Creating Photoshop Layer Styles in Motion"
on May 24, 2014 at 2:41:25 pm
Last Edited By Simon Ubsdell on May 24, 2014 at 4:24:06 pm

For anyone still interested, here's the tutorial that shows how to do this:







The great thing about building your own "layer styles" in Motion is that you can publish the results for use in FCP X (either as Titles or as Effects that can be applied to titles or artwork) - allowing for considerably greater flexibility than if you have to use flattened Photoshop layer styles.

And of course you can easily introduce organic-looking light animations - which you can also control within FCP X if you publish the right controls.

Don't forget that you can also easily save off "favourites" to the Motion library, so it's easy to build up a collection of your best creations.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Walter Soyka
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 7:25:33 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "I used to use Photoshop a great deal more than I do these days until it occurred to me that a huge number of the tasks I was using it for were lot easier and more quickly achieved in Motion... A lot of its other features now strike me as hopelessly clunky ... and that's speaking as someone who enjoyed working in Photoshop more than almost anything else."

Simon, I often take the same approach (but of course with Ae, not Motion).

Photoshop by design encourages lots of fully manual and often destructive operations (even with all the recent improvements with smart objects and smart filters). Motion tools, on the other hand, encourage proceduralism and non-destructive workflows. Using motion tools for stills work can open up lots of possibilities.

I'm even starting to use Nuke a bit for stills (managing mattes in Ps is frustrating -- sometimes nodes just seem like the right solution), though I'm not yet as fast with the paint system as I am with Ps.

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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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 8:18:47 pm

[Walter Soyka] "I'm even starting to use Nuke a bit for stills (managing mattes in Ps is frustrating -- sometimes nodes just seem like the right solution), though I'm not yet as fast with the paint system as I am with Ps."

Very interesting.

I'm glad I'm not the only one to have started doubting Photoshop's advantages. As I say, I used to absolutely love working with it but then the lateral thinking involved in doing the same stuff in a motion graphics environment made me question a lot of what I thought.

Of course, as you say, Ae is really just an uber-Photoshop in so many ways and Nuke of course would be that in spades - almost any motion graphics/compositing application is going to have advantages over a Photoshop workflow.

That said, the stuff it does really well it still does better than anything else out there.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Oliver Peters
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 19, 2014 at 8:32:14 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "almost any motion graphics/compositing application is going to have advantages over a Photoshop workflow"

Of course, the whole point behind Smoke is to roll all those functions into a single application.

FWIW - the last end credits I built (all stills) were created in the old Motion as individual projects for each page.

- Oliver

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


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David Mathis
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 22, 2014 at 3:44:06 pm

Assuming that Shake will work with Mavericks then I am considering that as a replacement. Sometimes nodes are a better way of doing things. Sad that Apple decided to end Shake like they did. It had potential.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 22, 2014 at 4:14:58 pm

[David Mathis] "Assuming that Shake will work with Mavericks then I am considering that as a replacement. Sometimes nodes are a better way of doing things. Sad that Apple decided to end Shake like they did. It had potential."

Egads. Friends don't let friends use Shake in 2014.

If you're not interested in Nuke (awesome but pricey), there are several other nodal compositors you could consider.

Mamba FX [link] Single-shot compositor based on SGO Mistika, Mac version coming soon
Fusion [link] (no Mac version)
Autodesk Composite [link] (no longer actively developed, free from Autodesk)
PixelConduit [link] (no PC version)
Blender [link] (open-source 3D app, compositor built-in)
ButtleOFX [link] open-source compositor
Natron [link] (another open-source compositor)

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter] | RenderBreak [blog] | Profile [LinkedIn]


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Walter Soyka
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 22, 2014 at 4:17:16 pm

And of course Autodesk Smoke, which I also use and am quite fond of.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter] | RenderBreak [blog] | Profile [LinkedIn]


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 22, 2014 at 4:22:13 pm

[Walter Soyka] "Egads. Friends don't let friends use Shake in 2014."

Why ever not???

Granted there are plenty of other options out there, but I recently installed it on Mavericks and it works a treat - just as it has always done.

It's still crazily powerful - albeit lacking a raft of more contemporary features. I was amazed to be reminded that the installation is just 100MB. What a class act!

I can't yet see the day when I'll be giving up on Shake entirely - it's still a real pleasure to work with.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Walter Soyka
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 22, 2014 at 4:31:52 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "I recently installed it on Mavericks and it works a treat - just as it has always done."

Because it was first EOL'ed eight years ago in 2006 and finally discontinued five years ago in 2009? Doesn't that make you a little nervous about using it in production going forward?


[Simon Ubsdell] "It's still crazily powerful - albeit lacking a raft of more contemporary features. I was amazed to be reminded that the installation is just 100MB. What a class act!"

Shake parallels FCP7 in a great many ways. Including the eventual migration imperative.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Final Cut �Studio 2014� May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 22, 2014 at 4:50:20 pm
Last Edited By Simon Ubsdell on May 22, 2014 at 4:50:59 pm

[Walter Soyka] "Because it was first EOL'ed eight years ago in 2006 and finally discontinued five years ago in 2009? Doesn't that make you a little nervous about using it in production going forward?"

Oddly enough, Shake continues to inspire me with more confidence than almost any other application I have ever worked in - I think there a massive simplicity and elegance to the underlying architecture that makes it incredibly resilient.

I mean, it's still working fine in Mavericks - that says a helluva lot about it.

Objectively speaking, of course, you're totally right - but how can you give up on something that is so deep and powerful and such an incredible pleasure to work with?

Although I've lost touch with that community a bit in the last couple of years, I bet there are still a goodly number of VFX people who are still using it for one thing or another. The deep and lasting affection for it was really quite something ...

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Walter Soyka
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 22, 2014 at 6:49:08 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "Oddly enough, Shake continues to inspire me with more confidence than almost any other application I have ever worked in - I think there a massive simplicity and elegance to the underlying architecture that makes it incredibly resilient. "

Fair point! If an application doesn't rely on all that much from the OS, there's a lot less that can break with new releases. (Contrast this with, say, FCP X with its development highly leveraged on advanced OS features. Of course, the deprecation of QuickTime should probably make everyone a little nervous!)


[Simon Ubsdell] "Objectively speaking, of course, you're totally right - but how can you give up on something that is so deep and powerful and such an incredible pleasure to work with?"

Adopt something deeper, more powerful, and maybe only slightly less pleasurable to work with?

But you've convinced me. If it's working well, why not? I'd just still caution any Shake user to keep an eye on (see what I did there?) other packages under active development.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 22, 2014 at 6:53:23 pm

[Walter Soyka] "keep an eye on (see what I did there?) other packages"

Quite so ;-)

I was a dedicated (even perhaps an avid) Fusion user back in the very early days and it's become a very serious contender that I may well revert to ...

Have you had a go with it recently?

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Walter Soyka
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 22, 2014 at 7:07:49 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "I was a dedicated (even perhaps an avid) Fusion user back in the very early days and it's become a very serious contender that I may well revert to ... Have you had a go with it recently?"

I did a quick evaluation a couple years ago when I started using PCs, but at that time I chose Nuke instead, somewhat on features/workflow and somewhat on ability to find collaborators.

That said, Fusion's volume effects and the GPU acceleration were interesting and unique, and Raf Schoenmaekers's Krokodove toolset is just stunning. Fusion 7 should be released any day now, with a whole stack of new features: a new UI, 3D engine, 3D splines, Alembic/FBX import, linear workflow, OpenColorIO, and more.

I think Fusion will be worth another look when the new version is released. But then again, Nuke Studio might keep me pulling me into The Foundry. (And you're not helping there with your encouragement of Modo!) Again, I'm not sure I have the brainspace to effectively use both.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Chris Harlan
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 23, 2014 at 4:28:00 am

[Walter Soyka] "Egads. Friends don't let friends use Shake in 2014.
"


LOL


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David Mathis
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 24, 2014 at 4:08:13 pm

What is the learning curve for Composite like? Also, not able to find any information on the main Autodesk site.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 26, 2014 at 4:28:40 pm

[David Mathis] "What is the learning curve for Composite like? Also, not able to find any information on the main Autodesk site."

My caution regarding Composite is the same as regarding Shake: it's a dead product.

You can download it free from the Autodesk Exchange Apps store:
http://apps.exchange.autodesk.com/

There's some free training, too.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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David Mathis
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 20, 2014 at 3:51:09 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "As always a really great round-up from Oliver.

One thing that I might add to what he says is that surprisingly Motion is actually a really useful replacement for Photoshop, especially for those frustrated by some of the limitations of Pixelmator."


I really love working with Motion and after seeing that statement, love it even more. Two things that are missing are expressions and null objects. Those two are only available in After Effects, the other strong point there is using Trapcode Particular for particles, there is no equal. I hope that Apple really considers adding null objects and expressions in the next major release. Until then, for some stuff I will have to rely on After Effects, including particles. That said, there is no question that Motion is really awesome!

I do have Pixelmator and while it is good for something very basic, just not a strong competitor as of now.

One part of my Studio 2014 "package" is stuff from Rampant Design Tools, just pure awesomeness!


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 20, 2014 at 3:58:56 pm

[David Mathis] "Two things that are missing are expressions and null objects."

Actually, you can easily make null objects in Motion and I use this technique all the time - simply create a dummy shape of your choosing and link whatever you like to it.

Expressions are indeed missing but if you really push the parameter behaviors you can get to a very similar place, as I've mentioned before:







Obviously the level of complexity you can achieve with Ae expressions is essentially unlimited - on the other hand, the ease of setting up extremely complex expression-type interactions in Motion can be pretty mind-boggling, on top of which the real-time feedback you get as you work is a massive advantage over Ae expressions ... which in my mind makes up for a very great deal.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Oliver Peters
Re: Final Cut “Studio 2014″ May 16 by Oliver Peters
on May 21, 2014 at 12:53:53 am

"Question for Oliver:
You mentioned something about installing stuff from the app store onto multiple machines you control and own. If my understanding is correct, and I personally own and control an iMac and Mac Pro, then I only need to make a one time purchase of Final Cut Pro and install on both machines?"


Yes.

- Oliver

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


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