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Switching to PC, best alternative to FCPX?

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Walter Hop
Switching to PC, best alternative to FCPX?
on Sep 23, 2011 at 10:10:27 am

Hi guys,

Not trying to troll here, but I've been lurking this forum for ages and wouldn't know a better place to ask this! First off, I actually have come to love FCPX a lot. I have a simple HD cam and make short videos. No studio stuff. You could call me the perfect prosumer. FCPX has been fun, smooth and snappy for me.

But I have outgrown my iMac's specs (Mac Pro = so expensive) and I need to run some Windows software which has lousy Mac versions. So all the signs point to switching to Windows. But my major problem is, I still want to do video editing, so I will probably start to miss my beloved FCPX.

My main question therefore is, in what editor should I invest on Windows? Specs of video editing packages don't tell me much. Most of the experience is in the 'soft' side of software: how smooth does it work, does it crash, does it integrate well, does it cater to your type of user, does it have a bright future with good vendor support, does it have a good community of people creating plugins and presets, etc... Those things are hard to find in a book or an article because it really takes time to learn, and not many people have used multiple tools on that level, so I read a lot of superficial complaints and understatements of the real benefits of software (imho).

So, I hope some people here have PC video editing experience and can tell me their thoughts. What would you buy for the next couple of years, if you liked FCPX but you'd have to go PC for your video editing?

Some info about my situation:

- What I like about FCPX: the easy workflow, background rendering, live tweaking of effects, having a nice library of looks and color presets to apply (I also bought some presets from motionVFX and CrumplePop which are so easy to drag'n'drop into a project). The pricing of course (but saving time can save more money).

- What I didn't like about FCPX: the nonconventional timeline (I edit music videos so for me the old, rigid time-locked way had some positives), inflexible keyframing, bad quality of retiming (I do a lot of it but it's been problematic in FCPX) and the too basic color correction. Also, of course that it only runs on the Mac, so a cross platform app has a pre... I haven't used Motion yet, but I think in the future I will need compositing more.

My hunch is, the battle is between Premiere Pro/AE, versus Vegas Pro on the other hand. It seems like Avid is more for the professionals needing pro functionality (with I don't), at the expense of a bit archaic user interface and workflow, and with less of a 'prosumer' community creating cheap plugins and presets. I am guessing Premiere Pro has the better cards now. Or am I seeing it wrong?

Anyway, I hope someone with experience on the PC can tell me what they think.

Of course I'll download a trial and play around, but it's taken me weeks of very intensive use to really get a feel for what FCPX is 'about', which I'd never get from a trial, and I hope to get a nudge in the right direction so I stand a better chance of investing my time in the right choice.


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