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Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?

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Evan Lee
Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?
on Oct 28, 2011 at 7:06:53 pm

Yes,I know full well that this title may sound weird to you guys because people are more often talking about the migration from FCP to Adobe after the release of FCPX,but it is indeed the predicament I'm facing now. Let me spell it out.

I have been studying in a film school for 3 years, during which I finished most of my projects on premiere on a pc computer. Although my friends and teachers never stop ridiculing me about " PC and prem are only for layman!", I find it suits what I need just right. On top of that, cheap and versatile PC helps me save a whole lot of money which I invest on other equipments.

However, the scary moment came when I stepped out of the campus trying to find a job. Most of the video studios are dead set on using MAC and MAC ONLY! FCP and MAC are listed in the requirements column of every video production company. I once got rejected downright and humiliatingly during an interview as the interviewer showed me the door right after she know I was a "PC GUY", and no matter how much I explained the virtues of adobe, they just turned a deaf ear to it.

It seems that I can never get a job without the proficiency in FCP and MAC, but when I surf online, such news as " Apple betrays its professional users and we'd better jump on the adobe bus" is all over the forums and blogs.

I think you can see my dilemma here. Personally, I hold absolutely no grudge against apple and I like to learn new stuff, but I don't want to spend a lot of money on a wholly new system and a lot of time on learning it, which, when I finally get a grasp on it, would be replaced by other systems.

Although I've never been to this section of the creative cow forum,I believe if I want an answer to the question concerning apple, here are the best advisers I can find on this planet. So could you guys help me out here:

Shall I shell out more than 1000 usd on mac or stick with pc, hoping adobe can gain grounds on appple soon?

Thank you soooooooo much !

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Ryan Holmes
Re: Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?
on Oct 28, 2011 at 8:26:27 pm

Premiere looks to be on the way up. With it's acquisitions of Irdias and Automatic Duck. I imagine big things are on the horizon for Adobe. FCP7 is a dead platform. It doesn't hurt to learn it but I wouldn't dump $1K into purchasing that software + a new Mac. By the time you graduate people will be migrating somewhere - either FCPX, Adobe, or Avid.

If you're going to learn any software, I'd get on Avid. I think it's $295 for a student license of Media Composer 5.5 and they give you 4 years of free upgrades as a student.

Majority of TV and film is cut on Avid, so if that's where you're aiming I pick up Avid quick. I also see nothing wrong with continuing your use of Adobe (or even getting FCPX). The more tools you know the more valuable you can be to any potential employer or client. Don't corner yourself into a 1 NLE guy. More tools = more opportunity.

My $.02


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Evan Lee
Re: Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?
on Oct 28, 2011 at 8:41:25 pm

thank you for suggestions!

I forgot to mention that I'm also well versed in Avid, but believe or not, it is THE LEAST USED NLE in my city. I heard that it is widely used in NY and LA, but sadly it seems that I'm living in the backwoods.

BTW,out of curiosity, people in NY and LA are using Avid on Mac or Pc?

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Shane Ross
Re: Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?
on Oct 28, 2011 at 9:45:40 pm

I am in LA, and I use Avid on a Mac and PC. There is no difference between the apps on either platform. None. Same with Adobe. Well, I hear it runs best on you might have a leg up there. Good news is that the two NLE's plotting to fill the vast gap left by FCP both work on PCs, so there is no shame in knowing, and owning one. I am planning my next purchase to be a PC for my Avid and Premiere rig


Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def

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Craig Alan
Re: Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?
on Oct 30, 2011 at 12:26:43 am

Do both. The latest premiere is not all that different from FCP except you'll need a Mac for FCP. If you want to be a pro, learn to learn quickly. Even though these companies got snobby with you, they are out of touch. FCP is EOL. AVID is still here and premiere is gaining ground. Knowing the Mac platform will be good for you as well. FCP X might catch on. We'll see. But if this is your profession, know it all. It will get easier with practice. Once you are in the timeline, all these programs feel similar. (except X).

OSX 10.5.8; MacBookPro4,1 Intel Core 2 Duo 2.5 GHz MacPro4,1 2.66GHz 8 core 12gigs of ram. GPU: Nvidia Geoforce GT120 with Vram 512. OS X 10.6.x; Camcorders: Sony Z7U, Canon HV30/40, Sony vx2000/PD170; FCP 6 certified; write professionally for a variety of media; teach video production in L.A.

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Andrew Rendell
Re: Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?
on Oct 28, 2011 at 8:28:31 pm

I'd recommend learning at least two editing systems as that'll open the door to more work. I'm currently FCP and Avid, but I recognise that Adobe has moved on from what it was five years ago (or 10, or whatever) and now has a serious set of tools that are just as suitable for the professional as the above and I'll add it to my repertoire at some point (probably next time I'm quiet).

Sadly, the kit that you know becoming obsolete and you having to buy/learn the next thing has been part of this business for a long time and I don't suppose it's ever going to stop. OTOH lots of places keep on using kit long after the manufacturer has brought out a shiny new version, it works, so why change it it you don't need to.

BTW the answer to the question what's the best computer (Mac or PC) or software (FCP/Avid/Premiere) is always: whatever they've got. No one's interested in some smartar5e telling them they've bought a cr0ck of sh1t.

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Neil Patience
Re: Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?
on Oct 28, 2011 at 8:37:28 pm

I think it is quite a tricky time to know exactly what to do at this time.
It is clear that FCP 7 has limited life. It is likely to be around for a few years one way or another but there is no doubt that its users will have to decide how they are going to move forward at some point.

Since you already have a PC and Adobe I would certainly look at Avid. It will run on a PC or a Mac and the educational deal is very good.

I have not used Adobe but if you can operate Avid on a PC the Mac version is 99% the same so you would have no real problems migrating from one to the other.

Also I think it is fair to say that most of the higher end facility houses, broadcasters and film studios are Avid based.
If your goal is to work in that area then it will be a good thing to learn.
Smaller more local places may have already or have plans to turn to Adobe or Avid in the next couple of years if FCPX does not gain popularity.

Where I work in the UK I move between Avid and FCP 7 pretty much job by job. As yet Adobe is not that popular but that could well change.

I would check out your local edit facilities or your potential employers and see what they are using before spending too much money.

best wishes

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Matt Lyon
Re: Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?
on Oct 29, 2011 at 5:46:33 am

Evan, if you are entering the workforce now, you might consider trying to find a junior position at a company where they are willing to train you on the job. A few weeks doing footage ingest in the overnight shift will teach you lots. Plus, being mentored on the job, by someone with experience will always beat what you can learn by yourself. And you'll be learning new equipment AND getting paid. Of course, this is all easier said then done....

And if every shop in town is using Macs, then you can't swim against the tide forever. Things change, but not THAT fast. For instance, my last gig was on FCP 6.
Even if studios ditch FCP, they'll probably try to stay on the same hardware, rather then buy all new machines and assorted Infrastructure (at least for the next few buying cycles).
My two cents,

Matt Lyon

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Daniel Frome
Re: Should I migrate to FCP or stick with premiere?
on Oct 29, 2011 at 11:25:35 pm

It's too bad you don't know FCP7, becase it's going to keep you employed for the next 2-5 years depending on what the studios are doing in your area.

You'd be even better served learning Avid. If TV is your target job, then Avid is the no-brainer answer here.

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