It’s finally happened. Apple has released Final Cut Pro X to the masses, along with Compressor and Motion. All three applications are available only on the Mac App Store, and weigh in at $299.99, $49.99, and $49.99 respectively. That brings the total to $399.97, well under the $999.00 for Final Cut Studio, but doesn’t come complete with Soundtrack Pro or DVD Studio Pro, both of which may be offered on the Mac App Store at later date.


Final Cut Pro X has taken some major steps forward, and while some are enthusiastic about the change, others seem skeptical about what seems to be a step towards iMovie more than a refinement in features.

For instance, the Magnetic Timeline lets you move tracks around, automatically adjusting the location of your other tracks to meet the changes. Also, included in Final Cut Pro X is Content Auto-Analysis. The Auto-Analysis will scan your media, add tags to your content, and then organize your clips using smart collections so you can easily find exactly what it is that you’re looking for. It could be a nifty feature, but it could also be something that very few people actually use.

[quote]Completely rebuilt from the ground up, Final Cut Pro X is a 64-bit app that takes full advantage of the latest Mac hardware and software so you never have to wait for the next edit, even if you’re working with 4K video. Final Cut Pro X uses multi-threaded processing and the GPU on your graphics card for blazing fast background rendering and superb real-time playback performance. Additionally, a ColorSync-managed color pipeline ensures color consistency from import to output. [/quote]

Being rebuilt from scratch, and supporting 64-bit is pretty huge, and should substantially lower time spent waiting for clips to render. So that’s a pretty big plus.

We haven’t taken it for a spin yet, but we have a number of video geeks on staff, so we’ll surely have a lot of commentary on the apps as we move forward. Keep your eyes peeled for reviews, and other fun snippets of information on Final Cut Pro X.

Release Notes

Revolutionary Video Editing

  • Assemble clips in the Magnetic Timeline without clip collisions or sync problems.
  • Use Clip Connections to attach B-roll, sound effects, and music to the timeline.
  • Reduce clutter by grouping clips into a Compound Clip. Easily expand it back to single clips.
  • Perfect your pacing right in the timeline with the Inline Precision Editor.
  • Cycle through different shots, graphics, or effects at one place in the timeline with Auditions.

Powerful Media Organization

  • Import a broad range of formats including native AVCHD, H.264 from DSLRs, and more.
  • Content Auto-Analysis captures camera metadata and analyzes shots in the background.
  • Choose analysis options for stabilization, rolling shutter correction, and audio enhancement.
  • Create and apply custom keywords on the fly as you select ranges in clips.
  • Smart Collections let you dynamically organize content and find any shot in a few clicks.

Incredible Performance

  • New 64-bit architecture uses all the RAM in your system for larger projects and richer effects.
  • The Cocoa foundation makes Final Cut Pro more responsive, interactive, and fun to use.
  • Final Cut Pro taps the GPU on the graphics card and all the cores in your Mac for speed.
  • Background processing lets you keep working without interruption.
  • A ColorSync-managed color pipeline produces accurate, consistent color across applications.

Compelling, Customizable Effects

  • Preview effects to see how they look with your footage before applying them.
  • Change the look of titles, transitions, and effects using intuitive controls.
  • Control effects with precision using a keyframe editor that appears directly in the timeline.
  • Adjust the Ken Burns effect with simple onscreen arrows for start and end points.

Integrated Audio Editing

  • Let Final Cut Pro repair significant audio problems such as hum, excessive noise, and more.
  • Sync DSLR video with separate audio in a single step, with instant audio waveform matching.
  • Enrich your soundtrack with a library of royalty-free sound effects and audio effect plug-ins.
  • Create immersive audio experiences in 5.1 surround.

Intuitive Color Grading

  • Improve the look of any clip with the single-click Balance Color feature.
  • Apply the Match Color feature to match the looks of two clips shot under different conditions.
  • Manipulate color, saturation, and exposure with the Color Board.
  • Fine tune color for a specific color range or area of the screen using keying and masks.

One-Step, Optimized Output

  • Export projects to Apple devices and websites such as Vimeo, YouTube, and Facebook.
  • Add your content to a set of themed menus, then burn a DVD or Blu-ray disc.
  • Output files for HTTP live streaming in a single step.

System Requirements: 2GB of RAM (4GB recommended), OpenCL-capable graphics card or Intel HD Graphics 3000 or later, 256MB of VRAM, display with 1280-by-768 resolution or higher, 2.4GB of disk space.

Some features require Internet access; fees may apply. Blu-ray recorder required for burning Blu-ray discs.

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