Post Production

Final Cut Pro X New Features

Last week during NAB, Apple rolled out new versions of Final Cut Pro X, Motion, and Compressor. In the above episode of MacBreak Studio, Steve Martin and I go over the top new features that we find most interesting.

For Final Cut Pro, in addition to performance improvements, the marquee features are the addition of 3D text and very flexible masking features. The 3D text is incredibly well-implemented, with high-quality texture maps, environmental reflections, self-shadowing, and a set of animated templates. What’s really surprising is the perfomance: on newer machines, you can play back these animated titles in real time while changing textures and animation styles.

We’ve built on the 3D text features by releasing 4 new plugins that extend these features (one of which is free) – you can check those out here:

The masking additions include the ability to draw any shape mask and to keyframe the position, rotation, scale, and individual control points of the mask. Every effect now has built-in mask controls, and the masks can of course be applied to color corrections. Now if only you could track these masks!

The accelerated GPU processing of RED RAW will be a welcome addition to folks editing RED material.

The 3D features in Final Cut Pro X are also available in Motion, but go even deeper because they can be included in full 3D environments including casting shadows and reflections, animatable lights and cameras, and more. 3D text doesn’t integrate into Motion’s 3D space in exactly the way you might expect, but it can be made to work. You can also use Motion’s tracking behaviors to track 3D text to a video clip but I find it’s tricky to get a really good track.

With Compressor, filmmakers can now create an iTunes Store Package for submitting their film to a certified delivery partner.

In the coming weeks we’ll explore many of these features in-depth on MacBreak Studio.


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Mark Spencer is a freelance producer, videographer, editor, trainer and writer based in the Bay Area. He produces Final Cut Pro X-related training and plugins for with his partners at Ripple Training. He is an…

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