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The Feature Thief: Apple taketh away, sometimes giveth back

04/24, 2:51pm

In push to move forward, beloved bits and pieces sometimes fall to the wayside

Stop us if you've heard this one: Apple takes one of its key software applications, radically changes it, losing important features along the way. Existing users say Apple has dumbed down an app that was perfect, while new users say this is fantastic, they can finally understand the application. Flash forward a few months, and Apple has stealthily added back some or all of the features. We've seen this with iMovie and Final Cut Pro, we saw it with Pages, we are seeing it now with iPhoto turning into Photos. It is a well-worn path by Apple, and if we're not fans of the way they go about it, we are often fans of how these new applications turn out ... eventually.


Final Cut updates to 10.1.3, gets matching Motion, Compressor patches

08/20, 9:09am

Blu-ray support a focus

Apple has issued minor updates to Final Cut Pro and two of its companion apps, Compressor and Motion. Final Cut has been updated to v10.1.3, primarily solving problems burning Blu-ray discs or creating a Blu-ray disk image. It also ensures that color corrections are kept when pasted between clips during Share, and that effects applied to clips in the Browser in previous versions are retained when clips are added to the timeline. Other fixes target XML round-trip imports, automatic library backups, and skimming growing files in the Browser.


Sources call for Yosemite in late Oct., Retina MacBook, Mac with 4K

07/23, 2:59pm

4K tech could come to iMac or new monitor

OS X Yosemite -- which is going into public beta tomorrow -- should eventually ship in late October, sources claim. The present plan is reportedly to keep releasing new developer betas every two to three weeks through September 29th. Work should then shift to a gold master build, due October 10th. Final details, including a launch date, may be announced at Apple's October media event.


Apple posts Final Cut 10.1.2, Compressor 4.1.2, Motion 5.1.1

06/27, 3:06pm

Final Cut Pro gets numerous workflow enahncements

Apple has issued updates for all of its professional video-related Mac apps. Leading these is Final Cut Pro 10.1.2, which has received dozens of workflow improvements and bugfixes. Optimized, proxy, and rendered media can now be stored in any location outside of the library, or deleted from within Final Cut. A standard (Rec. 709) look can be applied in real-time to HDR and wide-color video from ARRI, Blackmagic, Canon, and Sony hardware, and the software newly supports Apple's ProRes 4444 XQ format.


Autodesk announces Smoke 2015 with 3D Tracker, redone Timeline FX

04/07, 10:15am

Enhances hardware, software support

Autodesk has revealed Smoke 2015, the next edition of its video editing software. Upgrades this time around include an overhauled Timeline FX system, with added effects options including direct access to Action 3D compositing. A new 3D Tracker tool matches visual effects to camera movements, such as layers, text, or 3D objects.


Briefly: FrostyGlass for FCP X, PDFpen adds readaction options

01/22, 2:34pm

Motion graphics theme FrostyGlass now available for Final Cut Pro X

Factory FX has released FrostyGlass, a set of eight fully-customizable plugins for Final Cut Pro X that aim to enhance a project by simulating glass distortions. Including a filter effect and a theme and title generator, FrostyGlass creates glass distortion on top of one's video project.


Apple wins patents on 3D video editing, iPhone motion compensation

01/14, 11:16am

iPhone tech could change interface for runners and walkers

Apple has won a pair of new patents from the US Patent and Trademark Office. The first deals with processing and editing 3D video, and suggests a means of importing and editing two clips simultaneously. Apple editing software -- presumably Final Cut -- would be able to identify and link clips from left-eye and right-eye cameras, mainly using SMPTE timecodes. For convenience, edits applied to one camera would be automatically reflected in the other, and adding one clip to the primary track would put the paired one in a secondary track. If necessary, linked clips could still be edited separately.


New Mac Pro sneak-previewed at WWDC, coming later this year [U]

06/10, 3:22pm

Black cannister shape, 12-core configuration, Thunderbolt 2, more

[Updated with real-world photo of the Mac Pro] Apple on Monday gave developers and the public a "sneak preview" of the next Mac Pro coming later this year -- a radical new "cannister" form factor in black that is 1/8th (by volume) the size of the previous model. It features a 12-core configuration based on all-new (E5) Intel Xeon processors, dual AMD-provided FirePro workstation graphics, new PCIe flash storage, new faster RAM, PCI Express gen 3 support, the ability to use up to three 4K-quality displays, and external outputs dominated by Thunderbolt 2.


Final Cut Pro X 10.0.8 adds minor upgrades, fixes [U]

03/28, 3:10pm

Motion, Compressor get maintenance updates

[Updated with info on updated QuickTime codecs] Apple has released Final Cut Pro X 10.0.8, an update to its video editing suite. The code adds several minor features, such as support for Sony's XAVC codec up to 4K resolution, and the ability to display ProRes Log C files from ARRI ALEXA cameras with standard Rec 709 color and contrast levels. Time-reverse clips can now render in the background, and editors can use key commands for adjusting Clip Appearance settings in the timeline, and view reel number metadata in a file's timecode track.


Apple to launch new Final Cut Pro X marketing campaign

03/28, 12:04pm

Company tries to win back pro video editors

Apple is today launching a new marketing campaign aimed at winning editors over to Final Cut Pro X, says the LA Times. The campaign focuses on users praising features and differences in the video editing suite. Apple's efforts are reportedly being timed to coincide with the National Association of Broadcasters expo, which begins April 6th in Las Vegas.


Apple posts updates for Final Cut, Motion, Compressor

12/06, 2:32pm

Updates mostly maintenance releases

Apple has posted new maintenance updates its line of professional video editing software. Above all is Final Cut Pro X 10.0.7, which among others fixes problems with creating single-layer DVDs, third-party transitions using black instead of source media, and third-party effects causing Final Cut to freeze during background rendering. It also restores the Offset slider for the Letterbox effect, and allows editing MXF files that are still ingesting.


Final Cut Pro update brings new controls, interface tweaks

10/23, 6:15pm

RED video codecs now supported

Apple has released a maintenance update for its Final Cut Pro software, bringing interface improvements and a list of other changes. Dual viewers with separate video scope displays are geared for easier shot comparison, while the Share interface and import window have been redesigned.


Briefly: Nattress Video Scrapbook, IK Multimedia Summer Sale

07/13, 1:12pm

IK Multimedia offers AmpliTube discounts

Noise Industries has released a new package of plugins that allows users to create video scrapbooks by animating still images and adding transitions and backgrounds. Nattress Video Scrapbook includes six dynamic transitions, as well as a variety of motion effects, and support for Final Cut Pro, Motion, and After Effects. The software also includes support for creating stylized backgrounds for portrait images that don't fill an entire frame. A free trial can be downloaded from the company's website, while a full license costs $49.


Apple reveals new MacBook Pros, MacBook Airs

06/11, 1:39pm

Top-end Pro moves to Retina display

Presenting at its WWDC 2012 keynote, Apple today announced new MacBook Pro and Air models. The flagship system is a new, ultra-thin 15-inch Pro, just 0.71 inches thick, and 4.46 pounds. It also makes an upgrade to a Retina display, with a resolution of 2880x1800 and a 220ppi pixel density. The screen is also said to have a higher contrast ratio, better viewing angles, and reduced glare. To match, all the stock apps in OS X Lion have been updated to support the screen, as have Aperture and Final Cut Pro.


Luca Visual FX outs new plugins for Final Cut, After Effects

02/08, 11:20am

Add-ons simulate 'broken' movies

Luca Visual FX has launched four new plugins for Final Cut Pro, Motion, and After Effects. The first of these, Grunge Effects, is split between overlays and transitions. Both sets consist of animated textures, and despite their specialization, the transitions can potentially double as overlays.


Compressor 4.0.2 tweaks marker, export settings

01/31, 1:00pm

Joins Final Cut, Motion updates

Apple has posted Compressor 4.0.2, an update of its export utility for Final Cut Pro X. The new version makes just a handful of changes, for instance setting markers as chapter markers by default. Uncompressed 8-bit and 10-bit 4:2:2 have been added to the export settings list, and in a related improvement, transcoding uncompressed 10-bit 4:2:2 should be faster.


Motion 5.0.2 adds minor features, bugfixes

01/31, 10:40am

Parallels new Final Cut Pro upgrade

Complementing the release of Final Cut Pro X 10.0.3, Apple has also released Motion 5.0.2. Motion is used to produce titles, transitions, animations, and other effects for Final Cut. The v5.0.2 update is said to improve "overall stability and performance," including the speed of text editing.


Final Cut Pro X gets long-promised multicam editing update

01/31, 9:40am

Also upgrades chromakey tools

Apple has released Final Cut Pro X 10.0.3, an update to its professional video editing suite. The code makes the long-delayed addition of multicam editing, something editors complained was missing when the software first shipped in June 2011. The last major update of Pro X happened in September.


Noise Industries releases FxFactory 3 for pro video suites

01/18, 3:05am

Seven all-new plug-ins also debuting

Pro video effects tool makers Noise Industries have announced that FxFactory 3, the latest version of the plug-in suite designed to work with Apple's Final Cut, Motion, Final Cut Express and Adobe's After Effects, will be a free upgrade for existing users. In addition, the Pro version adds a new "playback ready" transition along with improved existing effects, and users of EasyLooks and SugarFX light pack will receive free upgrades to maintain compatibility.


Near-ready Final Cut Pro 8 killed in favor of FCP X?

11/30, 1:50pm

Apple allegedly wanted 'revolutionary' software

Apple produced a Final Cut Pro 8, but decided to kill it in favor of the controversial Final Cut Pro X, suggests RHED Pixel CEO Richard Harrington. The executive made the claim during a recently videotaped presentation. "There was a Final Cut 8 and it was 64-bit and it was done and they looked at it and said 'This is not what we want to do, this is evolutionary, this is not revolutionary' and they killed it," he is quoted as saying.


Tiffen Dfx 3.0.5 supports new Avid apps, Sony cameras

11/18, 10:40am

Paint Mask, brush slider get tweaks

Tiffen has released v3.0.5 of Dfx, its effects suite for photo and video editing. The upgrade critically adds support for Avid's new 64-bit editing tools, including Media Composer 6, Symphony 6 and NewsCutter 10. Also newly supported is a host of Sony cameras. The list includes DSLRs like the A550, A580, A700, A850, and A900, but also the NEX-3, NEX-5/5N, NEX-C3, and several SLT-series cameras: the A33, A35, A55V, A65V, and A77V. Remaining cameras on the list are the XCD-SX910CR and the STV680 VGA.


Final Cut Pro X 10.0.1 adds promised fixes

09/20, 12:10pm

Free 30-day trial being made available

Apple says it has released Final Cut Pro X 10.0.1, a long-awaited update to the company's professional video editing software. The upgrade adds several promised features, including XML import and export of both project and event information. The addition should make it possible for Final Cut to be better integrated with outside software. Apple’s director of pro video product marketing, Richard Townhill, notes that companies like Blackmagic and Square Box have been experimenting with beta versions of the new XML interchange and integrating into existing programs, like BlackMagic's DaVinci.


Digital Heaven posts free Final Cut Pro X, Motion 5 plugins

08/17, 4:40pm

Add-ons bring grids, safe areas to projects

Developer Digital Heaven has released two new freeware plugins usable with Final Cut Pro X as well as Motion 5. DH_GridX generates a grid with up to 30 horizontal and vertical divisions, intended for aligning visual elements. Grids support different line colors and widths, custom area sizes, and independently-set divisions.


Apple training site returns with Lion, FCP X courses

08/04, 12:00pm

No exams ready to take

Emerging from two weeks of site maintenance, Apple's professional training website has been updated with a new aesthetic, as well as new courses and certifications. The programs are intended for IT workers who need to prove familiarity with Apple products. Three new tracks have been introduced: these include OS X Lion, Final Cut Pro X, and Mac Integration Basics 10.7.


Apple wins 10 new patents, files for Final Cut trademarks

06/28, 3:45pm

Jobs, Ive get credit for Apple keyboard design

Apple has won 10 new patents through the US Patent and Trademark Office, information shows. One notable example is the design of the current Apple keyboard with a numeric keypad. While the peripheral is relatively mundane outside of its thinness and aluminum chassis, two of the 16 people credited with the invention are Apple CEO Steve Jobs and VP of industrial design Jonathan Ive, signifying how important the shape of the product is.


Apple issues refunds for unhappy Final Cut Pro X users

06/28, 1:05pm

Company breaks normal policies to keep customers

Some buyers of Final Cut Pro X are successfully getting refunds from Apple, reports say. The software is being sold exclusively through the Mac App Store, where one of the conditions is normally that all sales are final. By filing requests through a customer service form however, people are reportedly getting credit back for the purchase of Pro X and/or its companion apps Compressor and Motion.


Hooks for FCP7 XML import spotted in Final Cut Pro X

06/28, 12:35pm

Feature dropped to hurry launch?

Final Cut Pro X contains references to Pro 7 XML import in its code, a Brazilian website notes. Support for the feature is one of a number of complaints video editors have had with the new suite. The existence of hooks suggests that Apple may have dropped the feature in order to get Pro X released, or simply that support was considered but abandoned.


Apple product managers respond to Final Cut Pro X complaints

06/24, 3:30pm

Multicam, audio tracks to be added back

Apple product managers have answers to a variety of the complaints pro editors have made about Final Cut Pro X, reports the New York Times' David Pogue. The managers say for instance that while multicamera editing is currently missing, restoring it in an update is a "top priority." A stopgap solution involves using the Synchronize Clips option and the V key to switch to the bottom video track.


Forum roundup: Final Cut X discussions and more

06/24, 2:00pm

Recent forum topics

With the release of Final Cut X earlier this week, MacNN forum goers began discussing their opinions on this latest software update, which so far has seen fairly poor reviews. One Mac Enthusiast started a thread yesterday looking for a good app that gives a variety of stock alerts.


Conan O'Brien editors publicly slam Final Cut Pro X

06/24, 9:20am

Backlash makes late-night TV

Late-night comedy show Conan has taken the unusual step of satirizing Final Cut Pro X. A skit from the latest episode (see below) features members of the show's production team supposedly praising the new video editing suite. The clip itself is badly edited though, with sudden cuts, missing titles, out-of-sync audio and shifting color and lighting.


Final Cut Pro X expected to get missing features in updates

06/22, 1:25pm

Express, Server releases discontinued

Final Cut Pro X will get some missing features in future updates, says video production blogger Philip Hodgetts. Having spoken with Apple, he claims to have learned that Pro X will, for instance, eventually get the ability to import Final Cut Pro 6 and 7 projects. The software should also get a "replacement for the current XML workflow," and support for multicam editing.


Apple recommends Mac OS X 10.6.8 for Final Cut Pro X

06/21, 3:30pm

Software requires at least v10.6.7

Shortly after Apple formally introduced Final Cut Pro X, the company posted a note on its support site urging users to update their systems to Mac OS X 10.6.8 when running the new video editing software. The latest Snow Leopard release, v10.6.7, is listed as a minimum requirement, however the v10.6.8 build is currently still in beta development.


Final Cut Pro X woes include App Store issues, support gaps

06/21, 11:50am

Older Mac Pros need $149 video upgrade

The Mac App Store is actively blocking some Mac Pro users from downloading Final Cut Pro X, according to complaints. One person notes that his two-year-old Mac Pro is being blocked based on system requirements, even though it has a 2.8GHz quad-core Xeon processor and 6GB of RAM. The weak link may be video, in this case an ATI Radeon HD 2600 card.


Apple launches Final Cut Pro X at Mac App Store

06/21, 9:25am

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.


Final Cut Pro X due on Mac App Store next week?

06/14, 1:40pm

Could be matched by new Thunderbolt peripherals

Final Cut Pro X could arrive at the Mac App Store next week, a Japanese news site claims to have heard. In April, Apple said the software would come to the Mac App Store in June at a price of $299, but the company has been unusually quiet since. Even the official Final Cut webpage continues to highlight the old Final Cut Studio, just weeks or days away from Pro X's launch.


Screenshots depict Final Cut Pro X, Motion 5

06/08, 4:35pm

'Rig' feature makes appearance

Pre-release screenshots depict Motion 5 and other aspects of Final Cut Pro X, according to an AppleInsider tip. The software is due to ship later this month for $299, but Apple has remained extremely quiet about the software; even Apple's official Final Cut page has no hint of the upcoming product. Some of the leaked screenshots show a new "rig" function in Motion, though what exactly this entails hasn't been made clear.


New Final Cut Pro nearing completion, sources say

02/23, 9:50am

Changes 'dramatic and ambitious'

Apple is on the verge of finishing the next version of its high-end video editing tool, Final Cut Pro, sources say. A small number of editors are said to have traveled to the Apple campus recently in order to preview the new software and provide professional feedback. While some work remains to be done, the program is close to completion, the sources indicate.


Apple planning to drop Xsan, Final Cut Server?

01/17, 1:35pm

Lion could hold last Server release for Mac OS X

Apple may be ready to discontinue both Xsan and Final Cut Server, "reliable" sources are quoted as saying. Although the company has, allegedly, yet to make a final decision, Hardmac also suggests that based on its information, there is little chance of Apple changing its mind. It may in fact be preparing to drop Mac OS X Server, though this would only be after a release for Mac OS X Lion, according to claims.


Next Final Cut coming in split Snow Leopard, Lion versions?

01/03, 11:35am

Sources also claim info on Xserve, Blu-ray

The next Final Cut Studio should ship in March or early April, and be a "substantial update" if not as feature-complete as some people may be expecting, according to information obtained by Hardmac. The timeframe is roughly in keeping with a promise from Apple CEO Steve Jobs, who in November suggested that Final Cut would be updated "early next year." Two separate betas of the software are said to be in existence however: one for Mac OS X Snow Leopard, and another for Lion. Some features are allegedly being reserved for Lion, as a result of changes made to Mac OS X's QuickTime layer.


Briefly: DH_Counter updated to 2.0, personal iPad portfolio

11/12, 1:05pm

New iPad app aims at pro portfolios

An update for DH_Counter, an onscreen counter plugin for Final Cut, has been released by Digital Heaven. DH_Counter 2.0 allows editors to quickly create animated counting displays that can be placed on top of any video footage. The new release has been completely rewritten, and includes a number of new features, such as the ability to set a custom start or end time. A watermarked trial version of the software can be downloaded from the company's website, while a full license runs for $29. The company has also added two new plugins, DH_Fade and DH_FieldTrans, to its line of freeware products.


Next Final Cut Studio due early next year, says Jobs

11/11, 11:05am

Industry worries about FCS falling by wayside

A new version of Final Cut Studio is coming soon, according to a brief e-mail from Apple CEO Steve Jobs. "A great release of Final Cut is coming early next year," a terse message sent from Jobs' iPad reads. The mail was sent in response to a complaint from a post-production consultant, Dustyn Gobler, who argued that companies need to know Apple's software roadmap in order to properly invest hundreds of thousands of dollars. Avid and Adobe are now much more open about the future of their editing software, Gobler remarks.


New Final Cut Studio delayed to 2011?

09/30, 11:45am

Some intended features may be pushed to 2013

The next version of Final Cut Studio has been delayed until 2011, sources claim. Originally rumored to be coming in 2010, the project has allegedly been hit by several setbacks. Among these is work on a unified interface, for which Apple has allegedly been unable to find a suitable compromise -- not only in terms of design, but between the development teams working on Shake and Motion.


Flood of Apple updates target QuickTime, Final Cut Studio

09/16, 9:35am

Includes Final Cut Pro 7.0.3

Apple has deployed a series of software updates, including QuickTime 7.6.8, only available for Windows 7, Vista and XP SP2. The patch concentrates exclusively on security problems, which could be used to attack a PC by way of the app's ActiveX control, or else a path-searching flaw in QuickTime Picture Viewer. For Mac owners Apple has posted Pro Applications Update 2010-02, which includes Final Cut Pro 7.0.3, Motion 4.0.3, Color 1.5.3, Compressor 3.5.3 and Qmaster 3.5.3.


Lock & Load Express stablizes video for Final Cut Express

09/14, 4:55pm

Plugin specializes in DSLR video

CoreMelt has launched Lock & Load Express, a motion stabilizer for Apple's Final Cut Express. Based on Lock & Load X, the new plugin offers simplified controls for video stabilization and rolling shutter reduction for CMOS-based DSLRs with video capabilities. It's said to be up to 12 times faster than Final Cut Express's built-in stabilizer, and also able to work in the background. Workflow functions include in- and out-point analysis alongside rotation and zoom smoothing tools.


FxFactory Pro 2.5 rebuilds Slideshow Generator, adds effects

08/04, 5:15pm

Eight new effects add transitions, color control

Noise Industries has launched FxFactory Pro 2.5, an update of the effects plugin collection. The software contains over 160 filters, generators and transitions. It can render effects up to 10-bit YUV quality, and supports hardware acceleration for previews and rendering. Editors can use stock or custom presets, or create their own project-specific plugins for Final Cut and After Effects, which can then be saved and shared. The collection as a whole is compatible with Final Cut Pro, Motion, Final Cut Express and After Effects.


Briefly: PulpFx Abstract 1.1 released, iWebTemplate themes

08/04, 4:15pm

iWebTemplate collection gains five

Aquafadas has released a new version of PulpFx Abstract, a collection of generators for animated slideshows in Final Cut Pro, Motion, Final Cut Express and After Effects. The v1.1 update features two all-new generators, Small Moves and Sphere, along with added options for editing titles and managing the order of images. Also included is the ability to choose between several transitions with the Light Slice and Static Pulse generators. A trial version of the software can be downloaded from Aquafadas' website; a full license costs $49.


Magic Bullet Colorista II adds keyer, highlight recovery

07/23, 11:45am

Plugin supports several editing suites

Red Giant has released Magic Bullet Colorista II, an updated plugin for After Effects, Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro. The software lets editors perform color correction on video using color wheels. New in the upgrade are several features, most importantly a new keyer, which can control individual colors or ranges. Some options include direct sampling, and softening, choking or inverting a matte.


just:play 1.2 improves timeline, adds FCP XML import

07/07, 4:45pm

Broadcast suite makes several upgrades

ToolsOnAir has released just:play 1.2, a new version of company's broadcast server software. Meant primarily for TV stations, the program lets users schedule output from a variety of different video sources. This can include studio and live feeds, and real-time effects such as logos and tickers.


PHYX Cleaner plugin repairs video defects

06/11, 3:20pm

Increases bit-depth, deinterlaces frames

Noise Industries and PHYX have launched a new video repair plugin, PHYX Cleaner. The software can be used to rebuild pixelated chroma channels, restore gradients, and increase effective color depth; it can also be used to convert interlaced fields into progressive comb-free frames, smooth skin blemishes, and remove high- and low-frequency visual noise. Rough 3D 8-bit images can be converted to higher bit depths.


Boinx FotoMagico animation plug-in now Final Cut, AE ready

06/02, 11:45pm

Update works with video editors, exports to iPad

Boinx Software has loosed an update to its still-image animation software, FotoMagico 3.5. The software generates slideshows from a set of still images, supports movies -- with in- and out-point edits -- as slideshow frames, and allows users to add multiple audio tracks and narration track recording. FotoMagico can quickly build slideshows from basic elements, while customization options can be used to take the designs further.



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