Saturday, 23 June 2012

Final cut pro X - a year old and where are we?

Well we've been playing and training on FCPX for a year now and I have to admit, it's getting better and better! Apart from all the original issues of it being completely different to FCP7 and features missing, I was still very hopeful for the development as you could see some massive leaps in technology and vision for the editing process.
Then after a few months we saw an update or two that started to add the functionality that made life easier but even after a year it's still not perfect - but then what app is?
I really like the multicam feature and the ability to monitor on an external video screen (although that can be a bit hit and miss sometimes) but I can't help feeling that the tool isn't quite hitting the mark from a broadcast perspective, yet.

I produce a lot of corporate videos with my colleagues at and we have started to use, and enjoy using, FCPX for most of our production work. The reason for that is simple - we shoot in dslr, ingest and edit is quick and we can upload to out Vimeo account for client preview all within one app. It has taken away some of the legwork in our workflow and we save time for it - it has become financially beneficial for us and so a no brainer.
And that's where the training comes in - the guys on our team spent a few months just playing and found a route around the software but with the apple accredited training we had the information to build a proper, well thought out workflow based on knowledge of the softwares capabilities. It has everything we need and we just needed to be nudged in the right direction!

I guess the big question is - is FCPX ready for broadcast? Technically it is with its hd and 4k editing capabilities, but the major stumbling block at the moment is the output to tape. Most stations need their footage delivered on tape and FCPX doesn't give you that straight off the timeline so there's an additional process to deal with at the moment. Hopefully third party software should fill in the gap fairly soon but until then I think that's it's major flaw - everything else is on track as far as I'm concerned!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Final Cut Pro X update - 10.0.1

You've all probably seen it already but the new update for FCPX is out and available from the App Store.

I do have a quick note however as to the download and install if you are having problems - I had an issue where the App Store would tell me I had the latest version installed and wouldn't allow me download the update.

There were a few posts out there in relation to this and the general consensus is that you should delete FCPX from your applications folder and then open the App Store, it will then allow you to re-install from the new update.

Hope this helps and happy editing!

PS There will be another Triple A Post Production Showcase in Manchester in a few weeks - we'll let you know as soon as we have a date and venue!

Friday, 9 September 2011

Triple A Showcase success

We just want to say a big thank you to all that attended, it was a great event and a good turnout so thanks!

We had some attention grabbing demonstrations for Avid Media Composer, Adobe Premier Pro and Apple Final Cut Pro X each of which raised plenty of questions.

Paul Owen from Gorilla (formerly Boomerang and Mwnci) gave a great insight into some of the tools and functionality of Media Composer, showing off a promotional video produced for a PS3 title with lots of cuts and fast paced action as well as demonstrating the Colour Grading abilities of Media Composer.
Screen shot 2011-09-09 at 09.55.17.png

Questions that came up were related to the formats that Media Composer can handle (everything it seems!) and Multi-cam was another (one limitation is that MC can handle multi-cam for differing resolutions but not frame rates, they all have to be the same)

Alex Macleod was next, Digital Media Training Adobe Premiere Pro trainer and producer with He covered a quick and easy edit from footage shot only 15 minutes before the event started! The footage was an interview with Paul Hawke-Williams from Digital media Training on a rough green screen (basic 2 lighting set-up, not a flat green background). He ingested, cut and keyed in front of the audience eyes.

Members of the audience raised questions about export options for web and Alex mentioned that Adobe Media Encoder comes with the production package and that can handle all sorts of file formats.

Last but not least was Final Cut Pro X, demonstrated by Paul Hawke-Williams, Apple Master Trainer and producer at and a long time Apple fanboy and FCP user.
Screen shot 2011-09-09 at 10.07.14.png

Lots are lots of great things that FCPX can do... there are also lots of things missing! Since there were quite a few Broadcast editors in the house, questions were raised regarding tape ingestion and output which aren't fully implemented in FCPX at this time (soon to come or use third party capture and print tools for now). There is also no Multi-cam so despite AVID's small limitation in this area there is still no comparison (literally!)
Some of the great things that were showcased were the excellent Colour Grading and Keying features,much to the delight of some in the audience.

So thats just a brief overview of a successful event, the feedback so far from delegates has been very positive. Thanks to AT Computers from bringing along a few Mac's with FCPX and Premiere Pro as well as The Picture Exchange for bringing along some Avid kit too.
Also we would like to thank Charles Manalesque from Digital Garage who brought along some JVC cameras and Ninja HDMI recorders too.

The purpose of this event was to compare the latest post production editors in what is an extremely volatile market-space at present. Whether it is switching to a new product, or upgrading an existing one, training is an essential part of any transition. The presenters from the event are the actual industry trainers who provide the training at Digital Media Training. So please get in touch and let us help you get the very best out of whichever application & workflow you choose.

For the people who attended, we'll be notifying you of the winner for the Avid Media Composer prize kindly donated by Avid, check out twitter and Facebook for details of the winner and updates to dates and courses available!

Friday, 24 June 2011

Final Cut Pro X & Motion 5 Available Now

This week Apple released brand new versions of it leading editing system and motion graphics applications. Final Cut Pro X has been long anticipated and now users are getting their hands on the first released version.

We will very soon be posting our initial thoughts, and would like to know your first impressions.

Friday, 10 June 2011

3D editing... not the way you're thinking of though!

Saw this and thought it was amazing! Its a presentation from TED last year but shows what might be available in the future - 3D editing1
Think Minority Report but in your post production lab!

Monday, 25 April 2011

Free money for training

Don't forget, Skillset are there to help with funding for training in the TV and Film industry. Check out their web site:

Freelancers - stay ahead of the competition and keep your skills relevant
Employee - Improve your employability by keeping up to date with the latest technology
Employer - Training can improve your business productivity

Go on, have a look now and improve your future in the industry!

Final Cut Pro X - Will it give you your 'Edit Zen'?

As most of you Final Cut Pro fans will have no doubt found out by now there is a new version around the corner FCP X (pronounced 10 - to match the OSX descriptions). Its a major upgrade that has lots of new and improved features including functions we've been screaming out to get for quite a while, including H264 support, 4K support for RED and Arri, background colour correction and sound fixes on ingestion and the most significant - 64 bit processing!

But what does this all mean in terms of the craft of editing? Well hopefully it'll mean things get quicker and easier! Remember the outcry in the 80's about how computers are going to make life easier, quicker, more efficient! Well I don't know about you but my life certainly hasn't become easier! What it has become is more interesting - more time and gadgets to allow me to try more things and experience more, cramming more into my life. Its still busy but in so many more ways now.

As an editor, you'll still be able to capture footage, cut it and get it back out to tape/DVD/Web - but hopefully the cutting part will be quicker, giving you more time to play and experiment. Thats what we're here for, to help you streamline! I remember a time before I was Apple Certified where I'd be editing right up to the last minute, late nights, early starts! I was confident in my end results but wasn't the most efficient editor in the world!
One project I had was to deliver a finished edit in 5 days made from footage being delivered while I was editing, the last piece of footage coming in the morning of my final day! I was stressed, rushing, fighting to get this edit complete for an evening ceremony of the 5th day. I did it but I'm sure it took a few years off my life that week!
Then I became certified! I took the 3 day introduction course for FCP6 and thought I'd just be there twiddling my thumbs - I'd been a user for almost 8 years at that point (since FCP 1.2) so I knew everything I needed to know! Or so I thought... What I actually learned was a workflow, organisation techniques, tools I'd glanced at but never thought of introducing into my day to day editing. The end result - I had a similar 5 day edit to do the following year and life was a breeze! Clips were catalogued and slipped into the timeline like water, simple and easy, no stress and I felt so much calmer during the whole process! I still took 5 days but most of that was having the ability to use that extra time saved to be able to craft my edit, actually play and have fun with the footage to make a smoother edit.
The finished piece went out on the evening of the 5th day but it was far more polished and I felt so much better about it!

What was also useful is that I've saved a number of days over the years following certification by streamlining my editing, becoming more efficient - the end result is the same but I'm far quicker and happier about my final pieces because I don't feel like I'm rushing anymore! The course payed for itself 10 times over easily.

Let us give you that 'Edit Zen' with our FCP 7 introduction course (we also run Adobe Premiere and Avid Media Composer courses too), or the FCP X introduction when the new version arrives! Why not let us know your thoughts on your 'Edit Zen', what makes you calmer during an edit?