Why we’re betting everything on FCP X

Quitting FCP 7

100% of our customers are FCP editors. They range from ambitious freelancers, to ad agencies, to Hollywood post shops, to in-house editors at the BBC. We believe that the vast majority of these editors – and probably you, too – will be using FCP X as their professional editing platform within a year.

Over the last few years, we have corresponded personally with hundreds of FCP editors, helping them with technical problems, workflow issues, and generally doing our best to win them over as customers.

Because of this, we have a very good sense of who uses FCP and why.

So as we’ve been looking at FCP X, we’ve been trying to figure out: a) Is FCP X the end of our business? and b) What does FCP X mean for our users?

Our learning process has been to use FCP X extensively, and also to develop for it. We just shipped one of the first 3rd-party effects developed specifically for FCP X.

Our conclusion is that FCP X will be the best option for the largest number of professional editors going forward. We have started to port all of our products to FCP X, and hope to have this complete by late summer 2011. We won’t be supporting another NLE.

It’s tempting to speculate about the heated internet reaction to FCP X and the psychology behind it. But we won’t. Instead, let’s take a look at why FCP X will be the preferred option for professional editors.

1. You Can Pretty Much Stop Worrying About Codecs

There’s no way to overstate the importance of this. Editing with FCP 6/7 had over time become an increasingly technical proposition, as HD codecs proliferated. FCP X, in contrast, attempts to make your project “just work”, no matter what random codecs you throw at it. It doesn’t do this perfectly, but it’s very, very good.

This means that editors can now spend more time editing, and less time being video technicians.

For us as developers, FCP 6/7 required that we support 50 different codec/framerate/resolution combinations. With FCP X, we only have to support one codec – or rather zero, because FCP X has abstracted away the codec particulars. For editors, this means that you can focus on getting the project out the door, rather than googling why your client’s asset is showing up as “1888×1062”. When you are ready to export, you have a choice of high-quality codecs, all the way up to ProRes 4444 or TIF sequence.

2. Performance: Quantity = Quality

What do most of our customers have in common? Whether they are tiny shops or work at large media entities, they are all being asked to do more with less and turn it around quickly. When you are on a deadline, needing to render -again- in order to get a new cut to the client is a serious hit to productivity and discourages iteration.

The incredible performance of FCP X – and it is incredible – makes this obstacle disappear. Even with nasty h.264 footage straight off of your 5d, you can apply color grades, then crop, scale, and rotate all in real time. And not “real time” in the FCP 6/7 sense. It actually works in real time – before your eyes – in a way that seems to defy the laws of nature. This is incredibly practical for anyone who has to turn projects quickly for a client.

Even if you’re working with nicer acquisition format – AVC-Intra, let’s say – reshuffling a stack of filters in FCP 6/7 would still bring things to a crawl. In FCP X, your can delete filters, add new ones, and immediately play the result with no rendering. That means the latest revisions your client requested take minutes to preview instead of hours.

3. FCP X Makes Your Existing Hardware More Valuable

FCP X’s performance also means that your existing hardware investment just became more valuable. Here at CrumplePop, we have FCP X installed on a number of 2010 dual-core iMacs, a 2010 dual-core Mac Mini, and two 2007 quad-core Mac Pros (we try to avoid developing on fancy equipment, so that we have to “eat our own dog food”, as they say). The iMacs and the Mini are now all being used as realtime editing stations. The 2007 Mac Pros required new graphics cards ($250 each), and now they perform extremely well, handling heavy-duty editing and development on a daily basis.

For small and medium-sized shops, this is money in the bank. The fact that it was Apple – a company that primarily sells hardware – who made this possible is remarkable.

4. FCP X’s Open Effects Environment is Unprecedented and a Game-Changer

With the notable exception of Mark Spencer, very few people are talking about the full integration of Motion 5 within Final Cut Pro X. But this was a huge move by Apple, has no precedent in any other NLE, and is the single biggest plot twist for us as a company. It means that anyone with $49 can now purchase Motion and develop high-performance effects for Final Cut Pro X, without learning an API or even coding. We have now looked at this feature set very closely, have developed a product using it, and can confidently report: It works. The quality and care that went into the Motion integration are at times mind-boggling.

This means, as Apple suggested in their recent FAQ, that there is now a whole new platform upon which third-party developers can create effects for FCP X. As other new developers like CrumplePop spring up to take advantage of this platform, professional editors will benefit from a whole new crop of ingenious effects that will save them time and delight their clients.

Conclusion: In a Year, Most Professional Editors will be Using FCP X

As developers for FCP, we have a strong bias in favor of FCP’s continued success. That said, we had spent much of the year prior to FCP X’s release expecting that we might have to leave the platform. We were hearing the same rumors that everyone else was – that FCP X would be another iMovie, wouldn’t be pro, etc. – and we were ready to bail. Happily, we don’t have to. While there are obviously missing features (like a comprehensive redo of Compressor), the foundation of FCP X is extremely solid. FCP X, for the reasons listed above, is going to be what most professional editors use to edit. Maybe not tomorrow, but likely within a year. In many ways, FCP X is ten steps forward, three steps back. It’s not perfect, but as a company, we’re comfortable betting everything on it.

Gabe Cheifetz, co-founder, CrumplePop
gabe [at] crumplepop.com

130 Comments. Leave new

Don’t bet EVERYTHING – we are one of thousands of pro shops who are NOT betting ANYTHING on FCP X at the moment.

The flaws are too many to mention at this point, But they are well documented.

We enjoy your products but have returned our copy of FCP X, Motion 5 is usable, but barely, in the real world.


I think the key is “at the moment”. It makes a ton of sense for you and other pro shops to wait a bit. We have to try to anticipate what people will be using in a year, so we can set a development timeline. We’re very much hoping that we’ll meet up a bit farther down the line.


final cut pro x…will be the one that all will use…..YOU WILL SEE….


Art is absolutely correct. I spend a week with FCP X cutting together a couple of simple projects: A middle school play and graduation. The interface was so buggy and dysfunctional that I could barely make an hour without a crash (and my MBP 17″ i7 is no slouch). I got a 5-10 second beach ball almost every time I dragged a new clip into the timeline. Scrolling the timeline left and right was equally cumbersome. It reminds me of the first days of OS X, but in 2011 there is no excuse for a laggy interface on a high-performance machine. Other times tie sound would cut out with no explanation. At first I thought I was hitting some kind of hotkey, but relaunching FCPX solved the issue. Occasionally the app would crash just because I tried to trim a clip. Stability will certainly improve, but it has a long way to go. On the positive side, I never lost any progress after a crash. I also found the magnetic timeline confusing and counterintuitive. I get it. I just don’t like it. I don’t want clips to merge together just because there is a gap in the timeline. Gaps make perfect sense to us. A gap = nothing. A gap clip = something. Don’t make me create something to signify nothing. There were other times when tracks further down the timeline got shuffled up or down without my knowledge. They “got out of the way,” and completely out of sight. I had no idea what happened until I started hearing music where they shouldn’t be music. It was an unwanted audio scrap that was moved for me, not by me. For the love of god, just let me assign actual tracks. The trackless timeline sounds incredibly useful for an amateur, but it can be maddening for a professional. I really tried to warm up to FCPX, but it fought me every inch of the way. I see it being handy for applying “looks” and other adjustments, but as an editor it cost me more time than it saved. Not only because of the paradigm shift, but because of instability.


Please excuse my typos… I suspect I wasn’t seeing them because Lion was “correcting” them. Time to turn that off.


I hardly would say “thousands”. I really see FCPX scooping up the non-broadcast and non-film market as it matures. While many of the older editing crowd (includes me) are loathe to change and learn new things, this is a powerful, inexpensive piece of software. After initially “dissing” it for the 21 platforms i have at the university where I teach, after some quality hours on the software, I am completely re-evaluating my initial reaction. This may be perfect for my students. And, as history has taught us, get the young and up and coming market and you will win in the end (what FCP did to Avid).

Dylan Reeve
July 19, 2011 9:17 am

This is interesting, but I think there’s a fundamental flaw – the improvements (better codec support, better performance, solid integration with Motion) are all comparing FCP X to FCP 7, which is a no-brainer, FCP had been largely untouched for three years.

But when you compare FCP 7 to Adobes Creative Suite 5.5 you come up with basically the same result – better codecs support, better performance, and strong integration with After Effects. Even Avid offers better codec support, and better performance in many circumstances, than FCP 7. It also has solid integration with Avid FX (aka Boris Red).

FCP X is a great application for many users, but for more demanding clients (film and broadcast editors especially) it lacks flexibility and support for important workflows. Maybe Apple will fix some of these issues, but more likely I think those users will look for other tools.

That said, I suspect there is also good money to be made from providing products to enhance FCP X. You probably won’t have the same client base, but there will be no shortage of FCP X users to sell things to, and Apple’s App Store provides an ideal platform for doing so.


Good point – FCP X vs. PPro is a better comparison performance-wise. But if you look at the oft-cited list of missing features that “demanding clients” require – well, it’s actually rather short. And you could easily flip the argument around and say, “Premiere Pro isn’t a professional platform – it doesn’t even organize clips by keyword!” If FCP X can add support for EDL workflows and a broadcast feature set, then all the sudden things look very different. Of course, that’s still a big “if”!


Apart from the well documented missing features, the problem with FCP X is that it’s such a radically different way of editing (storylines, connected clips, no tracks…) that trying to do even simple things can become very frustrating in a short amount of time. I – as a professional FCP editor and former AVID editor – am willing to learn and expand my horizon. But right now, the concept of the magnetic timeline is so limiting for professional users that I don’t think a year is enough time for Apple to give us demanding pro-users more flexibility and customization. And besides, nobody knows, if they’re even going to work on that. Putting in big features like multi-cam support, OMF Export, SAN support etc. is one thing. I am not worried about those features. I am more worried about the basic concept of FCP X and if it is even possible to make it more flexible. I am still optimistic, but I am preparing myself more for a 3 year wait. Remember, hardly any pro was touching the old FCP until version 4!


Love your products, by the way!!!


Glad to hear that!

Yes, they seem pretty uncompromising about the UI. I agree that it is a stupefying sensation to try to do a basic edit, and not know how. I’ve found that you almost have to jump into FCP X and try to forget about the way of doing things in FCP 7. Of course, that is completely impractical for… almost everyone. It’s a huge change.


Couldnt agree more. I was red with frustration just trying to quickly lay things out in a timeline a time all the cuts, I don’t get it. Still havent had the opportunity to sit down with it and just explore, but the radical change in basic workflow is frustrating and extremely off putting at first.

The only people who feel at home right now are the ones who have grown up with iMovie. Now that makes perfect sense from a business point of view – both for Apple and Crumplepop. My daughter is one of those users. But she doesn’t even know what else you can do with an editing app (coming from iMovie). She’s going for the automatic features and Apple made sure that there are plenty of those in v01. There is nothing wrong with that. But why even include 4k support? Why include surround sound? Those are all features that go well beyond your average prosumer. That leaves me with some hope that maybe they wanted to get it ready for the iMovie crowd (to pay for R&D) and now, they slowly turn it into a more professional editing app…

“Of course, that is completely impractical for… almost everyone.”

And yet you write “100% of our customers are FCP editors. They range from ambitious freelancers, to ad agencies, to Hollywood post shops, to in-house editors at the BBC. We believe that the vast majority of these editors – and probably you, too – will be using FCP X as their professional editing platform within a year.”

Beyond the big holes of XML, MultiCam, etc, there are things such as the hoops you have to jump through to do a simple audio cross dissolve and the fact that there is no “Precision Editor” interface for secondary storyline clips that make the time savings of native codec support(or background transcoding of said codecs) moot to many.

Can Apple change things? Sure, but the same people that are saying that Apple will replace all the missing features(including opening legacy projects in FCPX) in six months were the same one that were saying that Apple couldn’t be so stupid to leave these features out after the grumbling started in response to the supermeet demo.

Apple has a long way to go to refine FCPX to the point where it is usable to a great percentage of it’s professional user base, and it’s given little information that it’s going to get there anytime soon.

I agree that Apple hasn’t communicated its plans for FCP X very well, and that is disconcerting. The point I keep coming back to is – what features would Apple need to add to make FCP X usable for you? Is it possible/likely that these will be added within a year? My guess is that this is very possible.

“I’ve found that you almost have to jump into FCP X and try to forget about the way of doing things in FCP 7. Of course, that is completely impractical for… almost everyone.”

Correction: ‘almost everyone…who’s spent a LOT of time using FCP7. Not anyone else, actually.’

Apple’s target market for FCPX is not professional editors.

Remember when the first blog journalism started appearing, and old newspaper hands were calling left and right for ‘blogger ethics panels’ and that sort of nonsense? Meanwhile their business model was collapsing and their own ethics were finally receiving public scrutiny. The FCPX situation is a LITTLE like that – except there are fewer FCP7 editors than there are journalists, by a huge margin, and the number of people on earth who give a damn about the film/video editing business is a rounding error on the number of people Apple is hoping to provide its digital content-creation tools to.

i understand that this forum isn’t targeted to nonprofessionals, but let’s face facts here: editing for film/TV is a tiny subset of what people will be doing with tools like FCPX in a few years. It looks something like an NLE, but that’s not its sole purpose – nor arguably its primary one.

If by “professional editors”, you mean “people editing something for theatrical projection, broadcast, or basic cable”, then I agree that this is not FCP X’s target market. But that’s not FCP 7’s target market, either. Apple says there are 2 million legacy FCP users – only a tiny fraction of those would “professional” by this standard. I would suggest a wider definition of “professional”, which would be: “Anyone who edits to make money”. That’s a lot more people than it used to be.

“The point I keep coming back to is – what features would Apple need to add to make FCP X usable for you? Is it possible/likely that these will be added within a year? ”

Is it correct to call a complete regression of the magnetic timeline to track based editing as a user Preferences option a +feature+? If so that one, how long? not holding my breath. More likely that’s an architectural decisions that will preclude track-based editing for good, or until FCP X has lost lion’s share of the actual Pro profession.

There are tracks in FCP X, though. Sort of.

Hi Walter,I just want to commend you on your joneury away from Apple and even more so for sharing it with us. You are 100% right about us being spoon fed how to edit, the apple way or the highway.I’ve been keeping a close eye on FCP for years, i could never justify the upg to FCP 7 from 6 and have been waiting in anticipation and whoaaaa, what a major disappointment.What annoys me about people spewing baby and bathwater etc is that they’re not seeing the bigger picture. Think about the time and money invested in nailing a video editing package, it doesn’t come over night and for a business what about the training and the likes of Final Cut Server and Xsan that have disappeared in to oblivion?My biggest gripe with FCP has always been the lack of realtime playback. When i came from a Premiere PC setup in 2005 to FCP on a G5 a crossfade was about the extent of RT and not much has changed. With premiere yo used to be able to press shift-enter and get some pretty heavy RT playback with premiere. Like many i was hoping for a face lifted version in V8, something that followed suite of the newer versions of Motion and Soundtrack, the slicker cocoa GUI’s.It would be great if you could touch on RT with one of your video blog entries. I know that you are an acceleration card user but it would be nice to see a native comparison.All the best

Wait. You’re saying that the magnetic timeline is limiting?? Have you actually used it? It’s so much the opposite. It gives you unprecedented flexibility. In fact, all of the ” radically different ways of editing” you mention are so simple and intuitive to learn and use. They have Please take 10 or 15 minutes and try it. I think you’ll love it on those merits alone.

Patrick Sheffield
July 28, 2011 9:22 am

Yes. The magnetic timeline is limiting. It is a straight jacket designed to protect the user from making mistakes. But as such, it is not as flexible as “old fashioned” track based editing. It is like training wheels. You can’t fall over, but you can’t go very fast.

Yes, I have used it for more than 15 minutes – I did the Izzy tutorials – I understand the UI. I worked on a project for 2 weeks and FCX failed utterly.

Try this – 4 cameras – overlapping – 90 minute event – 2 miked principals. Clips broken up into 11½ minute intervals (because AVCHD import failed – typical – and I had to use ClipWrap and .MTS files are broken at 2 GB intervals – roughly 9 clips per camera – or about 36 clips total), Some clips are shorter because the camera operators sometimes turned off when they moved positions, sometimes did not. Now, sync all the cameras up with your master audio so you can start editing.

How do you do it? The magnet timeline ties your hands.

In FCP, it was simple – cut your master audio onto A1A2, and A3A4, stack each group of clips for a camera on a track (V1 for Camera 1, V2 for Camera 2, etc). Now – either use Plural Eyes to sync it all – takes minutes (FCX couldn’t do it after hours of chugging) or do it by hand – sliding the video until you lose the echo between camera audio and master audio). Now you can disable the camera audio and start snipping away at the ums, ahs, pauses, and repeats. Once you have a clean timeline, you can start selecting cameras (or you might have used MultiCam).

FCX’s ENTIRE DESIGN PHILOSOPHY is to protect the user so they can’t hurt themselves. FCP is about flexibility so you can get your job done. FCX doesn’t FREE you – it locks you into a padded room where you are safe.

For anyone not worried about OMF support… You’re going to be in for a discussion with an annoyed audio engineer!
I’ve mixed audio on TVC to feature films since 1991, and when OMF came in as a link from NLE’s to Protools, it was a godsend! What are the chances that Apple are going to make us all use Soundtrack as the audio tool? Cmon! I work in studios with literally $100,000s of Digidesign expenditure. You’re not gonna take away 20years of Protools from me on a ‘mix for picture’ job… Sure, I can see it mint make business sense for apple, but really. I hope the integrate OMf exrt, I really do…..


Me too. OMF is a really big deal.

Count me among those who don’t care about OMF. I cut for web, DVD, and projection/LED.

The future of video delivery is not traditional broadcast with it’s exacting standards. It may be a step backwards in quality, but on the web no one knows the audio didn’t hit protools.

I recall similar debates about film vs. digital photography a few years back. Another: print pre-press (no one makes a living burning plates anymore). Change is the only constant.

I’m sure you’re right about needing .omf and that FCP X doesn’t quite make it for professional sound work. But the way you express it sounds a little too much like an edit suite manager around 1995 complaining that he has $100,000s invested in Steenbecks. The whole point about disruptive technologies like desktop publishing, desktop NLEs and — yes — Pro Tools is that they disrupt previous workflows, investments and methods. FCP X may not be ready for prime time but it will be — and it will disrupt your previous investment in edit workflows.


E D L is old…apple will come out with new way very soon,,,,

Patrick Sheffield
July 28, 2011 7:14 pm

How will that matter? It’s not FOR Apple – it’s for communicating to OTHER systems. Like Flame and Telecine and Nuke, etc…

For doing all those pesky FINISHING things…

Jeez – Apple and their big head, it’s contagious…


I run a one man shop based on Final Cut Studio, I still have occasion to export xml files for effects and compositing. I am not merely resistant to change, I look at the new interface and I reject the iMovie work flow. It simply is not something that I can cope with. I’ve had occasion to work with the iMovie film strip at the request of a client (whose wife wanted to tinker with the project after the fact, gawd help us all) and everything about the workflow made me crazy. I don’t give a tinker’s damn about keywords. I don’t want Apple’s auto-correct applied to my work. I expected a robust, upgrade to a stellar platform and we got a typical, neo-Apple toy platform.

My next dollars are going to be wafting their way into Adobe’s pockets. I will keep Studio on my desktop for my legacy projects but I won’t be running Final Cut Ex any time in the near future. I need to work today, tomorrow and every day moving through the next year. I don’t have the time and patience to wait for the magical thinking of Cupertino to get around to fixing this disgusting mess they’ve made. Quite simply, this is not a professional solution. I don’t see it becoming a professional solution any time soon. The nonsense and gimmickry that Apple has deployed in the guise of a professional application will serve them well with the legions of folks iPhoning their kids ballet recitals and soccer games. They’ll make a bag of cash (as they always do) by dumbing things down and making them glossy. Good for them.

This is my job. I expect to do the work. I demand fully featured, capable tools. I demand the platform I work on to honour the investment in time and money that I’ve made. I fully expect to be able to open any of the thousands of dollars worth of plug-ins that I need and use, regardless of the platform. It isn’t about “if” they can implement a professional workflow at some nebulous, uncertain date in the future. If I don’t work right now, today, I won’t be here to eventually work a year from now. There are professional alternatives that Apple simply cannot compete with. There is no way and no apparent path to work with FC7 projects in Ex. Premiere offers all of the power, the professional toolset and import/export capabilities that FCEx abandons in favour of gloss. There is no surprise in the BBC stripping Final Cut from their desks in favour of Adobe. They won’t be alone.


AE is more powerful, but doesn’t come close to the level of integration between Motion 5 & FCPX.

Some great points in this article. I’ll have to see for myself.

I plan to wait a few months & see what shakes out.

Scott Simmons
July 19, 2011 11:49 am

Interesting to read a developer’s pov on FCPx. But your point #3 only holds true for those that don’t have hundreds or thousands of dollars invested in AJA, Blackmagic and Matrox hardware. For all of those FCPx makes their hardware much LESS valuable. Plus it’s rather ironic that Crumplepop makes “broadcast and film effects” and is betting the farm on FCPx when it’s far from the broadcast tool that fcp7 was. Perhaps a name change is in order?


Harsh! Good point about AJA, Blackmagic, etc. however. So if FCP X were to add in support for 3rd party hardware and some strong broadcast features, you’d switch to FCP X? 😉

Scott Simmons
July 19, 2011 6:47 pm

I would add FCPX to my arsenal of tools but in no way would I bet everything on it. Betting everything on a single tool is a big gamble. As for turning it around from the previous comment, keywording doesn’t make the platform pro (a better term might be broadcast) near as much as 3rd party support makes the platform pro/broadcast.


Yes – I totally agree about 3rd party support. That really does have to materialize. As for it being a big gamble – it does come with a certain amount of risk. But we’re calculating that the risk is worth the reward in this case.


I would like to know how many of you are actually in the broadcast field? For those of us who are, we notice tapes are being used less and less, from both acquisition to delivery. With camera manufactures transitioning more and more to tape-less, network heads, affiliates, and local cable all transitioning to online delivery for content, there will be no need to send to tape. Have we reached 100% participation, no, but Apple, and any tech company for that matter, puts their efforts in preparing, and designing for the future, not supporting the past.

One question that puts this in perspective for everyone: Does Microsoft still support Windows 95, or does Apple still support OS8? Or how about, does Sony still make Beta-SP decks?
The answer is NO. And the WHY is the same reason Apple probably will not add 3rd party support for hardware.

I spoke to Blackmagic support yesterday. They anticipate FCP X working with their hardware, at least for monitoring, within a couple of weeks.

No kidding? That would be big news. Thanks for passing that on.

Hey Guys,

I just wanted to clarify Deans comment. We spoke to Dean a few days ago. And we mentioned that we had “video desktop” coming out soon to our drivers. This is the same Video Desktop feature that we removed a while ago. It works only with the 4x lane boards. What it does is basically allows our boards to act as an addition Graphics card output which will allow you to Preview your timeline through our board. It should not be relied upon to lay off to tape.

While this is not yet a perfect situation, it will allow users of our 4x lane PCI-express boards to get some preview through our boards.

It is worth restating, that FCX was a complete re-write and as such not all the features we needed were available in the first release. Rest assured we are constantly working with Apple in order to improve the capability of our products within FCX and we will continue to do so.


Joshua Helling
Director of World Wide Support
Blackmagic Design Inc.

Hi Joshua,

Thanks for the clarification. I think people would be keenly interested in knowing more about your plans regarding FCP X. Anything else you can share?

Unfortunately, there isn’t much specifically to share. But, Apple and Blackmagic Design are working on it. And as soon as the necessary components are available to us, you can be sure we’ll have something.

I know that’s a bit vaguer that you would like, but that’s what I know.


Thanks, Joshua. That’s great to hear and we really appreciate you taking the time to keep us in the loop here. We’ll be eagerly anticipating your next announcement.

A wise approach. It looks impressive, but I think Apple’s design philosophy is going to grate on teams larger than one. Apple is all about empowering the individual. It’s an aspect of Steve’s vision (the “great man” vs. “trends & forces” for you history buffs out there).

Adobe & Avid do seem to grasp the reality of creative teams, and how they work. If I was still a solo freelancer, FCPX might be a no-brainer.


As someone new to broadcast engineering I’m not married to any particular system. We have approximately a hundred AVID edit suites and a large investment in both hardware and software.

Scott how much would it cost to add another boot disk in your hardware to dual-boot? One drive for FCP7 and the other for FCPX.

If Apple can eventually save me thousands per edit suite in new hardware and upgrades they will make me look like a genius. This reminds me of the “pain” people felt migrating to InDesign from Quark XPress. The pain was minimal because the QXP plugins were no longer necessary (expensive buggers) and InDesign 1.5 and on-ward worked.

Go ahead and learn on FCPX v1 and and be ready to change the world with version 1.5 or be left behind.


Yikes, Quark XPress! Now those are fighting words.

CrumplePop Introduces Noir Moderne, Defends Final Cut Pro X | iPhoneConnection | UK iPhone Developers, iPhone App Developers Blog
July 19, 2011 12:26 pm

[…] CrumplePop has posted a blog entitled “Why we’re betting everything on FCPX,” outlining a handful of key reasons why the company plans to flow against the tide and start concentrating development efforts on Apple’s new Final Cut Pro X. The third-party effects maker has a lot to gamble with, since their entire business model is built around augmenting Final Cut Pro. […]

Manuel Hernandez-Stumpfhauser
July 19, 2011 12:58 pm

Premiere CS5.5 has all you have mentioned above and tons of better features than FCPX. I see FCPX as an expensive software for home movies. And by the way, I hate background rendering, that slows all the performance of the software and computer, and that is not the future of editing, that really sucks!

Derek Kowaluk
July 26, 2011 5:02 pm

Obviously you’ve never used FCPX as the background rendering is more “on the fly” rendering that pauses when you are doing edits. Its really quite seamless and I haven’t noticed any performance drain.


Background rendering IS the future of editing. With processors and subsystems continuing to accelerate in speed – handling ui, and foreground tasks will only become more smoother. In a few years you’ll have to eat your words about background rendering when you buy a machine that makes short order of it. For now i do experience how FCPX stammers while its rendering – however i’m not running it on a top-end machine either. Perhaps Apple can tweak FCPX so it doesn’t choke up so much.


It’s odd that even with the “stammer”, which is pretty annoying, it’s usually still a net gain in terms of productivity for a given task in FCP X. Similarly, FCP X is pretty crashy at this point, but autosave has meant that I haven’t yet lost any work. It’s hard to get used to.

Lars Pallesen
July 27, 2011 6:59 am

You don’t really understand how any of this works, do you? If you ever actually try using FCPX you can open up “background tasks” and see how the workload is being distributed across your system.
Hint: it doesn’t use up one single CPU cycle for background tasks while you’re doing something else that requires CPU power in the timeline. You should try it sometime.


For a ” motion design & FX” oriented company this make sense.

For pure editing Fxp X doesn’t make any sense.


In our experience, the Motion 5 integration in FCP X makes “design and FX” fit much more nicely into the “pure editing” process.


So what you’re saying is, in addition to staying with FCP despite yanking the rug out from under us, we have to switch from AE for our full-featured motion graphics to the simplistic and limited feature set of Motion to “enjoy the benefits” of integration.

Round trip workflow between AE and FCP has been a bit of an annoyance, but was worth it with an easy to use editor that didn’t get in your way or fight you with its conventions. If round trip integration is your argument for staying with FCP, it seems to me like it’s also as much of an argument to switch to Premiere Pro, which round trips with After Effects at least as seamlessly as Motion does with FCP, except with a FULL feature set throughout.


Motion is fully integrated in FCP X. No round trip. Of course AE can still have a place in a FCP X workflow, just as it had a place in a FCP 7 workflow. It’s the integration of Motion that’s significant, and represents an entirely new option that didn’t exist before.

CrumplePop Introduces Noir Moderne, Defends Final Cut Pro X
July 19, 2011 1:42 pm

[…] CrumplePop has posted a blog entitled “Why we’re betting everything on FCPX,” outlining a handful of key reasons why the company plans to flow against the tide and start concentrating development efforts on Apple’s new Final Cut Pro X. The third-party effects maker has a lot to gamble with, since their entire business model is built around augmenting Final Cut Pro. […]


Love your products, but can’t believe you’re betting anything, much less everything, on FCPX. Sure it may have some performance advantages over FCP7, but it doesn’t have some basic features that every professional needs. Why would any professional want to grade “footage straight off of your 5D” when they can’t even see an accurate, calibrated image on a real external video monitor? I pay my mortgage and feed my kids using FCP, but unless Apple improves FCPX very quickly, I’ll be forced to switch back to Avid (or look at what Adobe is doing).


True, the broadcast feature set isn’t there yet. But we’re betting that this will change. Also, don’t forget that lots of people are paying their mortgage by creating content for web delivery. And by that I don’t mean youtube cat videos – think interactive divisions at ad agencies.


“– think interactive divisions at ad agencies.”

We know Apple is. Probably not the argument to endear the professional “film” editor.


Manuel, you can turn off the background rendering

CrumplePop Introduces Noir Moderne, Defends Final Cut Pro X « Computer
July 19, 2011 3:57 pm

[…] CrumplePop has posted a blog entitled “Why we’re betting everything on FCPX,” outlining a handful of key reasons why the company plans to flow against the tide and start concentrating development efforts on Apple’s new Final Cut Pro X. The third-party effects maker has a lot to gamble with, since their entire business model is built around augmenting Final Cut Pro. […]

Justin Rowe
July 19, 2011 4:48 pm

I think your points are right on Crumplepop. No one would have tried to edit anything for broadcast with FCP 1.0 or 2.0. FCP finally became a viable NLE in v3.0. I am betting along with you that FCPX will get there too. I just hope it’s on a development fast track to get there. And in the meantime, I’m still using FCP7 to make a living.

Looking forward to what you’ll be coming out with for FCPX.


Yeah, this is really all about the development timeline. We’re hoping they fast-track the broadcast feature set, too. It’s remarkable that Apple refuses to say a word, officially, about their roadmap. Doing so would have gained back a lot of trust.


Thank you Crumple Pop for embracing FInal Cut Pro X and Motion 5, rather than bashing it before really using it. I really love what Apple has done to improve the editorial process and push towards the future. Motion 5 is very powerful and should not be overlooked, and heck, it’s only $49.99! That’s incredible. Like Mark Spencer said, it is worth buying just for the outstanding keyer. That’s cheaper than Red Giant’s plugin and any other keyers I know. But Motion 5 is far more than an excellent keyer, it’s a great motion graphics tool. Combine it with Apple FCPX & Adobe CS5 Production Bundle and you have a rockstsr Graphics system.

Take care all.


Totally… the keyer is a great example. And there are just a ton of other hidden gems FCP X + Motion 5. For instance, optical flow retiming is built into FCP X now – that used to only exist in Shake!

Dylan Reeve
July 19, 2011 7:31 pm

I think the “professional” market (at least broadcast and film) will walk away from FCP X. But Apple have designed the product to appeal to a much wider range of user. They sell at least 10 million computers a year, and plenty of the people who buy them also have DSLR cameras and like to dabble in making movies. Plus the massive number of professional user who don’t require the missing features.

Overall the number of FCP installations will probably increase dramatically with a more accessible application at only $300, but the composition of that market will change.

This bodes well for a company like CrumblePop though as the market for their products also increase. Only drawback is the change in perceived value for money – will people who’ve only spent $300 on their NLE be as willing to spend $75 on a plugin as those who’d spent $1000 in the past?


I disagree that it’s broadcast/film vs. dabblers. There’s a huge middle ground now of people who don’t fall into either of those categories, yet they are professionals too. There almost needs to be a new term for them – it’s not “prosumers”. Maybe “pro web editors”? There must be something cooler sounding than that. I have been watching agencies put serious money into online ads + content. It’s often shot with… yes, DSLR’s. There is just super rapid change going on in this industry.


agree. I have made 3 pieces for broadcast in my career but so many pieces I make are online, internal corporate pieces, and trade show videos that play only in closed networks that I have no reason to NEED broadcast monitors support. Although I do have one, so it is a little annoying that I can’t use it.

Dylan Reeve
July 20, 2011 3:38 am

No, not “dabblers” – there are heaps of professionals who don’t need many of the missing features. But for broadcast and film editors I think it’s the end of the road with FCP.

But there will be plenty of new “dabblers” too – even at $1000 the old FCP managed to attract quite a few.


There almost needs to be a new term for them – it’s not “prosumers”. Maybe “pro web editors”… end quote

You’re right they’re called podcasters. That’s who FCPX is for. Give it a year and FCPX will be on the iPad. It’s for users who will never see their final products on a televisoiin set.
Apple has made it clear they do not want anyone else to use hard media (DVD, Blue Ray, tape etc.) They want everyone to make there shows and upload them to iTunes and sell. That way they can get 30% of all your hard work if you charge for it.

Also, anything that FCPX does that’s new and cool and better than say Premiere will be copied and added to Premiere. But this will be added to an already fairly stable app in Premiere.

People, Apple has literally DROPPED the professional market and I doubt will ever come back to it. There are many, many more podacsters who will use this and the amount of pro broadcasters don’t equal squat.

I started with Avid at work then to Premeire at home. I have no problem going back to Premiere.


I disagree about your ‘podcasters’ point. That was true in 2005, but today a very significant amount of commercial content is produced for web distribution only. It’s crazy how fast this is all changing.

Derek Kowaluk
July 26, 2011 5:10 pm

The funny thing about people dabbling in something is that the more you dabble in something, the better you get at it, and the more powerful your tools, the better your output. The more the “dabbled” output gets better, the more competition for the “professionals”. Slowly the dabblers will become “new professionals”, but with better, cheaper tools. The old professionals will be pushed to the sidelines wondering what went wrong.


Candy coating FCPX. Sounds like a desperate attempt to stay in business


Oh dear!


First we really dig your products and Blog entries…

On this topic… there is nothing wrong with Final Cut Pro X! The problem is Apple itself. If they had announced FCPX in way that we where aware of what is coming and what is to expect in the Future there would have been a different view on FCPX.
Yes, I do remember when the legacy Final Cut Pro was still in it’s baby shoes and it was cursed to be Amateur DV and wedding tool. Now look at versions 7 a closely industry standard.
I will give it some time the question how long? Is this a history repeat and FCP 10.7 will be the next big thing or it will only take a year or two?


I very much agree about how the announcement was handled. Even at this point, if Apple just clarified its plans a bit, it would make a huge difference. FCP 10.7… hopefully it won’t take that long for people to come around!


It’s not just the announcements, nor the communication with FX developers, it’s the fact that AAPL pulled FCP 7 on the same day. You might own 20 FCP 7 stations and need to put on another 5 since FCP X doesn’t fit the workflow and your editors don’t have time to learn it anyway ATM. Too bad, no can do… the boss said so.

I note AAPL still have the seminars telling you how FCP will solve all your News and Sport Broadcast problems though.


Discontinuing FCP 7 – I really don’t understand the strategy motivating that decision… Nope, just tried again, and I still don’t understand.


It’s the way Apple rolls, it suggests confidence in the new product and a directive for the market to come with them. That kind of thing works in the consumer space really well. Professionals and industry don’t take so kindly to it.

I think the enterprise Mac App store (volume pricing and installing) Apple just launched is a direct result of the heat they have mean taking on this balls up. I guess we could ask, with Steve away from work but still making the big calls, is he on top of all the details like he has a reputation for?

Final Cut Pro was purchased from Macromedia to sell G5 PPC Macs. The whole thing was a great ride for Apple, they’re moving on. They do the whole widget, they are primarily a software company but actually it’s all about selling HW. Even the iOS App store with it’s billions of downloads only returns modest returns (comparatively).

How does the Chroma keyer in FCPX and Motion 5, compare with Premiere Pro and After Effects. I am on the fence of purchasing either one. I will be doing lots of green screen work. Thanks


@ EDB.. You don’t choose your NLE for the keyer, you Xhosas your NLE for your workflow, and buy a Keyer plug in separately! (I use primate, there are heaps of options from third parties that’ll work well.)


Keylight is an industry standard keyer used in almost ALL high end apps, from After Effects through Nuke and it comes free with AE. It also happens to be a very powerful keyer, unlike Motion’s.

You will also find After Effects does infinitely more that Motion, and if you’re trying to learn how to do any given effect in motion, you will soon find yourself buried in help articles from the enormous After Effects community showing how to do it in AE, while coming up empty handed on the Motion solution.

It is in fact the reason I switched to AE, despite the cleaner round trip workflow with FCP. Now that X is limited further, I’m looking at dropping FCP in favor of Premiere altogether.


I was in the same boat as you a month ago and I’m speaking as someone who had never done chroma before.

Motion 5 keyer is super easy to use but couldn’t fix my spill issues no matter how much I tweaked it.

After Effects (and Keylight specifically) did a better job. I did end up buying other chroma plugins for AE and it really helped make my stuff look good.

AE = Complicated, but robust and with near infinite options. Motion 5 = Simple but limited for now.

Patrick Sheffield
July 25, 2011 6:43 pm

While I agree that the Motion 5 integration is very cool (it could be considered FCX’s FxScript – I do wish Apple’d been smart enough to offer some protection for 3rd party developers – encrypted projects would be nice) and that FCX offers a number of interesting ideas, and that it will appeal to a wide swath of prosumers, it is unsuitable for broadcast professionals.

The missing features required for use in a broadcast environment have been well documented elsewhere… EDL, OMF, XML, ETC…

I have attempted to use FCX on a non-broadcast project with AVCHD sources, where the missing features would not be a factor and it utterly failed. Not only has FCX inherited FCP’s notoriously fragile AVCHD importer (some camera archives imported without problem, others would not – with no rhyme or reason) thus forcing me to use ClipWrap, but the audio sync feature did not work and FCX’s lack of a timeline meant organizing the 50+ clips from four cameras with 2 mic’d principals just so I could start editing was a nightmare. I ended up going back to FCP (and Plural Eyes synced all the clips properly in a matter of minutes – FCX couldn’t do it after hours of chugging away).

I am less than impressed with FCX – it has some interesting ideas, but the problems it seeks to solve with it’s “paradigm shifting magnetic timeline” were never problems for me – the single “viewing” window is cumbersome – can’t gang your timeline with your source, the fact that I lose my mark in/out when I click on a clip, and so many other things about the user interface make it an exercise in frustration for someone used to doing things quickly.

As a third party developer, I will be porting my plugins to FCX – but I’ve had almost as many customers contact me to ask that I maintain support for Final Cut Pro as those asking about support for FCX. The cynical side of me might point out that your “betting the farm” on FCX will probably give you more customers, but you are essentially abandoning broadcast professionals.

I’m sure you’ll find lots of new customers.

Patrick Sheffield
Sheffield Softworks


Thanks for weighing in, Patrick. That’s troubling that you’re runing into issues with AVCHD archives. We’ve had good luck so far importing 60d and 5d h.264 footage, as well as old gh2 archives that were impossible to import in FCP 7 but no problem with FCP X. Our experience in this area has been good, but it’s very possible that we’ve been lucky, too.

Crucial broadcast features are missing in FCP X – it’s hard to argue otherwise. But the question is: What if Apple adds these features, as they are very likely to do? That’s why we’re trying to look forward 1 year from now – what will the situation be then? Of course many editors won’t want to wait 6 months or a year, but as a developer we have to plan this way.

The single window UI in FCP X – I think it’s fantastic! That comes down to personal preference, I think, because for me the single window is incredibly practical. I do have some gripes with the FCP X UI, but this isn’t one of them.

Finally, I disagree strongly that we are abandoning broadcast professionals. We have many customers who deliver for broadcast, and we’re expecting that they will (grudgingly?) come around to FCP X after monitoring is supported properly. Again, we’re looking forward about a year here. That’s our prediction – murky as it looks now, we think FCP X will come to be accepted by a significant number of broadcast folks.

All that said – we’re happy to hear that you’ll be developing for FCP X!

Patrick Sheffield
July 26, 2011 7:33 am

I am curious as to why removing functionality – viewer window – is fantastic for you… Surely you would have the same effect with a broadcast monitor always reflecting whether you had a clip or a sequence selected?

As to the missing features, I will be surprised if Apple adds EDL support – they’ve said, thru Pogue, that they think it is old technology that should be abandoned. I think they’ll eventually publish an API to allow 3rd party support of EDLs and other file formats, but It really feels like Apple are abandoning broadcast professionals. The fact that they say that they will NEVER support FCP projects, but shipped with built in support for iMovie speaks volumes to me. It says that they are not concerned about people who HAVE old FCP projects to open. They’re only interested in those who have outgrown iMovie.

The truth is, Apple has had years to do the API – why was it not available when they released the software? I think because it’s an afterthought. FCX may be a wonderful walled garden (though my experience shows quite a few weeds) but professionals working in broadcast must collaborate. FCX is not designed for that.

Other things like being unable to relink to new versions of clips (not an uncommon occurrence) because some people in the past have relinked to the wrong media shows FCX is intended for beginners. Working with FCX feels like being asked to carve a roast and being handed a knife that has been purposely dulled to keep me from hurting myself. N

I’m sure Apple expected the reaction to FCX from those working in broadcast – their silence and the fact that they pulled Final Cut Studio from all their shelves says they don’t care what broadcast professionals think – it’s no longer their market. They’ve pulled up stakes and are moving to bigger pastures.


I like the single window UI because it’s impossible for my coworkers to scramble my window setup, and I can be lazy and drag/drop assets directly into FCP X events. That’s just me, though, and others no doubt have good reasons to like lots of windows.

I have to agree that the silence from Apple about the FCP X roadmap makes it easy to suspect the worst. It’s an incredibly counter-productive approach on their part.

I also agree about relinking media – that has to be there.

If the list of annoyances is addressed, and there is 3rd party support for monitoring – then FCP X is a real force to be reckoned with. I do think Apple is playing to win here, and so I expect that those things will happen.


Just two weeks ago I directed a commercial using a 5d, and while editing was being done in London I toyed with FCP X a bit. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out too well – the much expected automatic sync (we were using a classic slate) did never work as advertised and much more frustrating was the media management or the lack thereof. We had some 100 takes to sync and just having one browser window for that kind of work sucks big time. In the end I batch converted the h.264 to ProRes and used FCP7 for syncing audio and video, there having two browser windows and it even remembers which clip you were using last – after fiddling with FCPX it felt like heaven again.
I may have missed some critical features in FCPX, most probably, since I ran out of patience while trying to figure out what in hell was Apple’s idea how to do such simple task.


This is the sort of practical experience with FCP X that I find most convincing. Thanks for sharing this. I don’t know offhand if there is a decent workflow for this sort of syncing in FCP X. Your FCP 7 workflow isn’t great, either (transcoding first, then importing, then syncing everything by hand) – but it’s a known quantity and it works. And If I was in your position, and on deadline, I would choose what I knew worked every time, too.


Yeap there is something wrong with Apple to produce something like FCP X and the way they “sell” it to the market.
I will move on using Adobe CS 5.5 not loosing my heavy investment in video hardware, that’ not supported by FCP X.


The info that put this into perspective for me was this: the pro editing market is 20 times bigger today than it was ten years ago. That’s the pro market. The broadcast market is obviously a subset of the pro market. How big do we think that is? 10%? 5%?

FCPX is disruptive technology. Apple just gave us a bigger clue: broadcast is no longer the centre of the universe.

Have you ever seen a TV show about the internet? Without fail, broadcasters present the internet like this: pro vs amateur. Pro of course, is important and high quality. Amateur is poor quality rubbish, whether it’s bloggers vs. journalists, or podcasters vs. broadcasters, or YouTube clips vs. pro ‘clip shows’ on TV. (Clip shows are the lowest form of cheap, trash programming.) Ironically, broadcasters will purposely degrade video footage from the internet to make it appear worse than TV. Of course, we all know internet video is 720p or 1080p and TV is 576p or 480p. (We don’t really have HD in the UK yet, as we switched to widescreen and digital about 12 years ago. We’re slowly switching to HD broadcast now.)

One problem with TV’s pro vs amateur point of view – aside from screaming insecurity – is it’s just not convincing. Today, I get most of my information from amateurs. I am interested in niche topics, like video and design and broadcast can’t do niche. I see this role reversal as an upgrade, as I would rather get pro information published by amateurs, than amateur information published by pros. I care about the quality of information. Then about the efficiency, portability, and timeliness.

The first time I realised I actually knew something, I read a newspaper article about video technology. And it was all wrong!! I had no idea that newspaper articles were often complete bullshit. But of course: they write on something new every day. They can’t know about *everything.* Any specialised, niche or technical topic that is broadcast is likely to be a bit crude, simplistic, and often incorrect.

Beyond the occasional newspaper article, my professional interests are too niche to ever be broadcast. BBC devotes a mere 30 minutes per week to the entire digital world. That’s where I spend 50% of my waking life. (That’s 30 minutes out of something like 560 hours per week.)

TV is no longer the fireplace of attention. It is one of several focal points. And in the world of production, ‘broadcast’ is niche.

(I would have liked to mentioned the death of tape and DVDs – internet delivery of TV commercials is still great after 5 years – the death of television, and the death of Hollywood – Hi Gareth! – but there isn’t space 😉 (Last night I watched the Polish Brother’s FOR LOVERS ONLY: no budget Neo-French new wave feature shot on a 5D; straight to iTunes; marketing by internet. No studio required for anything. It has done well. I loved everything about it but the story. Very NOIR MODERNE, BTW.))


Obviously that wasn’t meant to be a reply to the one above. And all comments below it were hidden from me.
Sorry, not sure what happened.


This is just a really excellent point. Do you know where I go to find new workflows? The guys doing skate and BMX videos. That sounds ridiculous, but there’s a ton of innovation going on with those guys now, probably because good tools are affordable for the first time. For instance, look at these guys at a skate park in Winnipeg:


I mean, the result they got out of very limited equipment is unbelievable. I’m very familiar with the workflow they used, and there is just incredible craftsmanship going into this. As professionals, we need to pay very close attention, because there is this explosion of experimentation and technical creativity going on, and things are changing unbelievably fast.

mario flandoli
July 26, 2011 9:59 am

no question. I totally agree with you.
I am lost and disappointed with the new Final Cut X.
but I am sure you are right, this is the way. this is the future.
if I was a new customer I would love it immediately.
beeing an old fcp user I end up with lot of frustration looking for the old tricks, work around, and solutions.
I don’t find it any more, a tsunami in my editing habit.
I must go back to school, forget old stile edit and learn to play with new rules.


Or you can find a tool that utilizes your techniques and working style.

Just because Apple has proclaimed this the future of editing does not make it so.

Sometimes the emperor truly has no clothes.


I’ll probably buy it for my Mac Pro at home. But the editors at work are very unhappy. Everything you’re saying is quite true. Apple will fix many of the glaring deficiencies sooner rather than later.

But there is one single issue that is going to drive a lot of people away, unless Apple figures out a way to reverse their decision.

Importing FCP 7 projects.

If we can’t take our hundreds of projects into FCPX, then we will not be going that way. Period. End of story. No other issue can change that fact.

We’re a world-wide non-profit research and educational institute, and my department produces online educational material that runs in Blackboard, iTunes University, our classrooms and on our company website. We repurpose our old projects in new ways on a regular basis. There’s no way we can just throw away our thousands of hours of work and start over.


So if you move to Premiere or Avid, you will trust that these systems will import your hundreds of FCP 7 projects perfectly? My guess is that you’ll do what we are doing – keeping some dedicated FCP 7 machines kicking around forever. And if that’s the case, then the switching cost for FCP X is the same as Premiere or Avid.

Patrick Sheffield
July 27, 2011 8:23 am

While I have not yet tried it personally, I have seen reports of others importing FCP projects (via XML) into Premier – all sequences maintained, bins and organization kept. Text came over, but fonts were lost. Of course Motion projects would have to be rendered out and brought in that way. See Walter Biscardi’s blog and his column on the Cow for a chronicle of his efforts.

Automatic Duck will convert FCP sequences to Avid sequences – so there is a migration path that way, albeit not a cheap one.

If either Avid or Adobe is smart, they’d improve the FCP import – it would give them a huge huge edge on attracting switchers.

And Premier has a preset for keyboard mapping that matches FCP. Oh, and Mister Snitch – below – it’s not a wheeze for me. I will likely migrate my plugins to FCX, but for editing, I’ve already purchased both Avid and Premier.

Patrick Sheffield
Sheffield Softworks


“Apple will fix many of the glaring deficiencies sooner rather than later.”

What are you basing this on? A dream you had?

FCP is now an afterthought to Apple. You’ll see updates to iWork and the other iCrap apps before Apple gets around to fixing FCP X.

Mister Snitch
July 26, 2011 5:15 pm

“Don’t bet EVERYTHING – we are one of thousands of pro shops who are NOT betting ANYTHING on FCP X at the moment.”

Heard this tired wheeze so many times by now. Fact is, companies that adapt to Apple’s new version will prove the winners in the long run, and the big whiners today will still be whining tomorrow – about how they have to catch up.

“I will move on using Adobe CS 5.5 not loosing my heavy investment in video hardware, that’ not supported by FCP X.”

Closely related to the tired wheeze, of course, is the empty threat.


the counter wheeze of the terminal fanboy is every bit as tiresome and lacks a basis in reality. on what possible planet will companies investing in a broken platform with no legacy capabilities magically become the victors? as far as your twaddle about empty threats…. well, my copy of cs5.5 is winging it’s way through the shipping system toward me right now. the bbc stripped fcp from all of their desks and adobe is out pacing the industry in sales of their nle + motion graphics platforms by a factor of six. fcx offers nothing in terms of usability, power and control that doesn’t exist elsewhere. they’ve botched the ui and left third party developers out in the cold. frankly snitch, you’re wrong. apple has clearly marked out their turf, they are now firmly positioned in the consumer market with no commitment to professional, prosumer or legacy clients.

Why CrumplePop Is Betting Everything on Final Cut Pro X | Reader
July 26, 2011 5:42 pm

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Devil's Kitchen
July 26, 2011 7:53 pm

I am not a video editor, but I have been following this debate since FCPX debuted.

As a graphic designer, however, I must confess that the idea that people would be happy to move to Adobe’s increasingly abysmal and over-priced bloatware makes me laugh.* I do the majority of my work in Pixelmator these days—£18 and worth every penny. No, it’s not quite as advanced as Photoshop, but then nor is its price tag…

Good article, chaps!


*And, as a dedicated Freehand fan, it makes me ever so slightly angry too…


Adobe’s Premiere has been getting a good number of positive views, though. To my knowledge, there is no “Pixelmator of video”.

“Conclusion: In a Year, Most Professional Editors will be Using FCP X” | Interchange Project
July 26, 2011 10:26 pm

[…] a video effects plugin company, was originally skeptical of FCPX before it was released but is now betting the farm on it: Our conclusion is that FCP X will be the best option for the largest number of professional […]

Why we’re betting everything on FCP X – Maui Apple User Society
July 26, 2011 11:28 pm

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Thomas McKinlay Vanderlinden
July 27, 2011 12:45 am

Thinking on the emergence of desktop publishing, the demise of type houses that received typewritten pages (marked up by hand, and using expensive equipment requiring special expertise) and returned long ribbons of photo type to be waxed and pasted up for the process camera.
Most of the typehouses laughed about the 128K Macintosh with its coarse dot matrix printer & “fonts”…
Perhaps is it not the high end of a profession that is most likely to adopt and adapt a truly game changing technology, but rather, the all-night-amateurs, the I-can’t pay-that! folks, the do-it-your-selfers. They have so much to gain, and so little to lose. The pros mostly can’t see the opportunity though, they are too invested in the present, in the skill sets they’ve developed using the previous-revolution technology.
The amateur says “wow, I an print out a flyer with cool fonts and a picture made of dots. In my basement. I’ll take it.”
This may be overstating the case a bit for the current FCP arguments,
but I think Apple mostly expanded by offering to facilitate the growth of a potential customer into new areas,
rather than by providing refinements to things potential customers were already doing.


I like the historical analogy. Hopefully FCP X is a bit better than dot matrix (!), but the same principal could apply.


The weakness in that analogy is DTP replaced multiple, *physical* processes with a lot of margin for error with one that was unquestionably better and more efficient. There was no question back then it was a better way to work, even it meant some people would lose their job. The thing is, nobody is going to lose their job over this release.

FCP X doesn’t replace anything, it just changes the way the program works—for better or worse. All the cool stuff in FCP X really existed elsewhere, FCP is just playing catch-up while adding a few cool tools that make some things easier and leaving out a few legacy features. Folks are assuming these 1-click fixes and magnetic storyline with all the new tools in FCP will be all you need and that might be true for some people but not for everyone—the least of which is professional users who like to have to have a messy timeline (ready to cleanup later).


Couldn’t agree more. Not saying it will happen, but the all the hallmarks are there. I had any number of design pros telling me it couldn’t be done on a Mac. A few got the message and adapted, but most wound up looking (unsuccessfully) for work after they got laid off.

The more entrenched the “pro,” the more susceptible he/she is to technological disruption.


Thank you for your analogy, Councillor. I think we understand Apples motives and mission, that’s not what’s at issue.


We’re an art college. We own hundreds of FCP licenses. But we are not continuing with FCPX because it cannot be used in a lab environment – for one thing it will only place files where it wants, not where we need them to go for group project management. The ‘Movies’ folder and the top level of external drives are not usable.

Apple convinced us to start building a complex asset system based on Final Cut Server. Then they dropped it mid project. That is highly unprofessional and they are not trustworthy for any large business.

From next year we’ll be teaching another platform. Most other places that use many seats will do the same.


Thanks for this perspective. You’re in a difficult position in some ways, because the “trustworthy” platform that you build your lab around might provide your students with a skillset that’s not as marketable. I’m not sure what I’d do in your position!



How is FCPX a “a truly game changing technology”?

Why we’re betting everything on FCP X – CrumplePop Blog « BlackOctopusInc. My Digital Workbook
July 28, 2011 12:02 am

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July 28, 2011 1:15 am

[…] a month now… I’d say they’re barking up the right tree with their essay ‘Why we’re betting everything on FCP X‘. The main folks affected by the major paradigm shift of the new version remain pro […]

Jonathan Moser
July 29, 2011 5:36 pm

I really think the Kool-Aid’s gotten to you guys…nowhere on the editorial landscape of professional editors have I heard anything echoing your sentiments…but since Apple’s GNP is higher than the US’s (suuposedly), all bets are off.


Ha ha, we’ll see…!


FCP X, the future of editing.

who’s editing? what editing? what for?

if they would just consult with Disney for editing tools, there would be more innovation than a peaked market would handle.

I bet that the beautiful fcp x will bring too many less than professional editors than the market needs, just enough that everyone will be a professional.

some professionals here skimmed through FCP X and didn’t find the IN point. excuse the outdated lingo.

Crumple Pop is betting everything on FCP X. Here’s why… | Underbelly
August 1, 2011 5:06 am

[…] via Why we’re betting everything on FCP X – CrumplePop Blog. […]

Let’s call it… Co-operation! « fcpxplorer
August 1, 2011 8:03 am

[…] a strong declaration of intent over at CrumplePop where they explain why they have tied themselves to the mast of FCPX. In particular they are […]


I couldn’t agree with Crumple Pop more! Most of the points in this article I’m a witness to. I too have a ’07 iMac but didn’t have to upgrade my graphic card. I come from a creative background in graphic design, jumped into editing/film over a year ago using adobe premier cs5.

I LOVE Premier cs5 but could easily see that to get the most out of it I’d probably need to invest another $5,000 in hardware, due to painfully slow render times that bogged down the program on my 3-4yr old iMac, slowing editing significantly.

With hesitation because of all the hate toward fcpx I decided to give it a try anyway. I just finished my first “Professional” project using FCPX and with 2 program crashes and 1 mysterious disappearing of clip ‘Favorites’ I’m friggin delighted to be using FCPX! (No, thats NOT the kool-aid talking, I don’t own a iphone or ipad!)

People asking, “How is FCPX a game changer?” Need to do a NEW full fledged project in it and you’ll know why! The render engine, built in audio sync, clip ‘Audition’, and clip preview (just skim over the clip! imagine 100 b-roll clips being quickly reviewed in a matter of minutes) features are worth the price of admission.

Coming from Premier cs5, there were some things that I had to get use to, like the ‘Favorite’ feature to select usable clips, at first seemed a bit elementary but after some time I saw it’s genius!

I can understand fcp7 users plight, a lot of time and money invested and BAM! Apple pulls the rug! (Apple did something similar to me with the ipod touch 1st gen) But when I read all the hate comments and reviews all I hear is Bitter ex-lovers, Elitist afraid of the flood gates being open to the editing/film making field and Future fearsome upset at the Jurassic change Apple brought to their near perfect, beloved fcp7.

Apple FCP7 left in the night and din’t leave a note, it even took back some of the gifts it gave you that you expected to be yours; Never fret there other fish in the sea named FCPX. It’s here willing to love you and make the changes you’ve requested. Will you find any room in your heart to love it? *Cue violins*


um… not a fanboy? cue the romance novel allusions. i’ve skimmed the b-roll and it drives me crazy. i want control of when and where things are synced. i want my expensive hardware and multiple monitor investment to be useful. this isn’t about elitism, it is about functionality and usefulness. it is about the elitism of a company that promises magical, jaw dropping new features only to put out a shiny gizmo that doesn’t work with any of the professional tools we’ve been waiting to deploy at 64 bits. a company that promises, over a period of years, to address issues of speed, compatibility and power only to deliver a product that might prove fast once it is properly debugged but abandons any sort of compatibility, even to their own legacy wares. it is about the arrogance and elitism of a company that, during leaner times, survived on the loyalty and support of the professional grade users and now has the gall to cut those users loose. cupertino simply is not listening, not responsive and they don’t care. they have become the microsoft of the 21st century. their brand of elitism ignores their supporters in the industry and have taken it upon themselves to dictate rather than collaborate. frankly, that is not how things get done in the most collaborative art form there is.


I think you fall under ‘Bitter Ex-Lover”

Bob Farnsworth
August 31, 2011 6:23 pm

We are finished with FCP. FCP X is really not for us, Premiere Pro CS 5.5 is a great program and easy for a Final Cut editor to switch to. Frankly, I have yet to meet another FCP peer who has not made the jump to Premiere. I have enjoyed Crumple Pop products, and wish you the best. Perhaps enough new amateur users, or photographers, etc will jump on board the FCP X bandwagon. But for Pros it is quite dead.

Ted Mackel (@RealtorTed)
November 29, 2011 9:20 pm

I have used Adobe Premiere, Final Cut and was reluctant to use iMovie till I saw a live demo given by Randy Ubillos of iMovie 09 at LAFCPUG in Hollywood CA a couple years ago. After 20 minutes of Randy showing off some of the features of iMovie 09 the hands went up and people were asking when features similar would be incorporated into FCP.

I am not a Professional and I think I am a hair level above the prosumer, but what I have seen with FCPX is very attractive. My 18 year old son and his group is going to jump on a create some really great projects. People like myself dont have the time, money or inclination to worry which is better – it’s about how much time can I save and get a decent project out. Don’t get me started on rendering – there is nothing cool about waiting for rendering.

BTW thanks Crumplepop for those plugins another big time saver that I dont have to think about creating from scratch.


Thanks! We have to agree with you. We’re still loving FCP X. The more we edit, the more we’ve found we really enjoy using it.


Wax Banks:
> Apple’s target market for FCPX is not professional editors.

Um, it’s called Final Cut PRO X. They could have very easily called it Final Cut Express X or even simple Final Cut X. But they didn’t.

It is most definitely aimed at professional editors. It was demoed in front of a hall full of them. It just failed to deliver anything professional editors wanted or needed. I hope as time goes on, it will improve. Until it does, our studio isn’t touching it.




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