updated 09:25 am EDT, Tue June 21, 2011
Gets 64-bit framework, background rendering
Apple has finally launched Final Cut Pro X, an updated version of its professional video editing suite. The release brings Final Cut into the modern era, most significantly giving support for multi-core processing and GPU acceleration. The changes allow the software to handle background rendering, as well as 4K resolution.
The central component of Pro X is said to be the Magnetic Timeline, which lets editors add and rearrange footage in a way that pushes other clips out of the way automatically. Clip Connections can be used to keep story clips in sync with elements like titles and audio, and elements can be assembled together into Compound Clips that are edited as a single entity. An Auditions option can be used to compare different versions of a shot or scene.
Some other enhancements include Content Auto-Analysis, which quickly tags media on import and allows clips to be pushed into Smart Collections, sorted by criteria such as close-up or wide shots. The software now also uses ColorSync-based color correction, which should keep consistency between working material and output. In that regard both color and audio editing tools have been merged into the core software, no longer requiring jumping between separate apps.
Final Cut Pro X costs $300, and is available only through the Mac App Store. New versions of Motion and Compressor -- formerly bundled with Final Cut Studio -- are separate downloads, priced at $50 each. Motion 5 has been upgraded with the engine enhancements of Pro X, as well as a new single-window interface, added regular and "smart" templates, a new chromakey tool and "rigs" that adjust or apply several parameters simultaneously. Compressor 4 has gained features like distributed encoding, HTTP live streaming export and batch templates.