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Re: Thank you Apple - and don't change course. Please

COW Forums : Apple FCPX or Not: The Debate

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Jason PorthouseRe: Thank you Apple - and don't change course. Please
by on May 3, 2012 at 5:49:41 pm

I'm somewhere in-between both extremes having worked on X on a few projects now. I can see where Carsten is coming from - as a documentary editor I really enjoyed some of X's features and it definitely made my editing experience more fluid - more time to think story if you will. But there are downside too, and whilst I feel Scott's post, eloquent though it was, was unnecessarily personal I do agree with some points he made.

FOr me the key with X is that some things it does very well, others are good ideas poorly implemented and some are poor. For me the mag timeline works well - I've always been an editor who likes to hold footage in the timeline and X allows me to do it in a very organic way. I loved legacy for this, coming from an Avid background, so once I got my head around the different paradigm I was happy with the new arrangement oveall. I stress overall, because the absence of tracks and some odd (read counter intuitive) behaviours makes some things slower and more cumbersome.

It's the same for the rest of the app overall. For one job X was far quicker to cut on than 7, and the metadata capabilities were a real boon. For another, it was on a par - some faster and easier, some slower and harder. Would I use X to cut broadcast on? With provisos, yes - and they have mainly to do with timescales and stability issues, and that is my 'cautious' head speaking. And, thinking about it, that cuts to the nub of the issue with X for me. Editors are a cautious bunch - it only takes the thought of a machine crash two hours before TX to bring us out in a cold sweat, so we shy away from anything that takes us out of the comfort zone in terms of that which makes our lives easier. And rightly so - there's good reason and precedent for the way NLEs have matured and evolved over the years. The 'old' paradigms for NLE's are there because they're tried and tested - we know how 7 responds, we know it's failings and foibles - same with Media Composer. Dealing with X took me back a bit to the bad old days of cutting on early Avids - shiny, new, prone to failure and way different to 3/4 inch tape and a 9100, but rewarding too. So I've added X to my toolbox, and I think increasingly we need to think like this - as one in a set of tools that may, or may not, be the best tool for any given job. We're all becoming software agnostic in a way, and Apple's flawed attempt at 'thinking different' has, if nothing else, got us thinking and talking about the real meat and bones of our craft.


Before you criticise a man, walk a mile in his shoes.
Then when you do criticise him, you'll be a mile away. And have his shoes.

*the artist formally known as Jaymags*

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