Apple today has announced a significant update to Final Cut Pro X, bringing new editing features and workflow improvements. Apple says that Final Cut Pro 10.4.9 is available today as a free update for existing users.
Inspired by the COVID-19 pandemic and associated work from home changes, today’s update to Final Cut Pro X brings a variety of improvements to proxy workflows. Apple says that these changes make libraries more portable and help streamline remote work with large and high-res files:
For the first time within Final Cut Pro, video editors can create proxies in either ProRes Proxy or H.264 in dimensions as small as 12.5 percent of the original. They can also consolidate proxy media, images, and audio to an external or network-connected drive. A Final Cut Pro Library can even be relinked to proxies already created for added flexibility. Editors can now link to proxy media generated by third-party applications via XML. Examples include Frame.io, a cloud-based creative collaboration platform for review and approval, plus asset management tools like Keyflow Pro and PostLab. If proxy media is not available for some clips, users can adapt workflows to display either the original file or an optimized version.
Final Cut Pro 10.4.9 also makes a few changes specifically focused on social media content. Machine learning powers Smart Conform support for intelligently cropping videos to square, vertical, or other sizes. Apple says that these new features are perfect for content shared to Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat:
Using machine learning, clips in a project can now be automatically analyzed for dominant motion and intelligently cropped with Smart Conform to convert them into square, vertical, or any other sized video — perfect for popular platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter. Transform Overscan reveals media outside the crop boundary when adjusting scale, rotation, and position, which allows storytellers to easily reposition the crop. Video editors can also add a Custom Overlay to guide them when placing text and graphics within a non-landscape frame.
Apple also touts a series of editorial workflow improvements. ProRes RAW camera settings, such as ISO, color temperature, and exposure offset are exposed in the inspector for the first time, and editors can now apply audio crossfades on adjacent clips in one step.
There are also performance improvements with new Metal-enabled plug-ins for RED RAW and Canon Cinema RAW Light. Apple says that transcoding 8K RED RAW video to ProRes 422 is up to two times faster on Mac Pro, and up to three times faster on MacBook Pro. There is also support for playing and editing 8K Canon Cinema RAW Light for the first time, Apple says.
Finally, there are a variety of updates coming to Motion and Compressor today as well:
Motion now offers professionals a whole new range of possibilities for creating stunning effects and graphics. Creators can import third-party 3D models or choose from a built-in library of 3D models in the USDZ format for use in titles, generators, effects, and transitions. They can even use behaviors or keyframes to manipulate the position, rotation, and scale of a model, and take advantage of existing replicators, emitters, lights, and cameras for further creativity.
Also included in today’s Motion update is the new Stroke Filter, a tool that automatically outlines an object or text element using its alpha channel. Editors can customize outlines by animating their offset, applying multiple stroke filters to the same object, or using the gradient tools to create multiple strokes with different colors. This enables motion graphics artists to create dazzling animations and effects while avoiding the time-consuming work of outlining elements by hand.
Compressor is also updated today with support for custom LUT effects, the ability to use Camera LUTs to convert log-encoded footage to SDR or HDR outputs, and other workflow enhancements.
Read more in Apple’s full press release.
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