I think for most users this is it!
We might see more in the future but only with Apples Silicon.
This will again cause a major transition away from FCPX since people might not be willing to shelf out few grand for the FCPX dongle.
I interviewed for a teaching job with a company that contracts to high schools across several states to teach media production. They started the program years ago with iMovie, but Apple wanted nothing to do with them, so Adobe stepped in. They get free software to use, give the kids free Adobe certification tests when done, and this is spreading Adobe product use across several state high schools. I hear and see this over and over and over, and have for many, many years. Apple has totally abandoned support for educational institutions except in very specific situations that are high profile. Apple sucks at marketing an NLE.
Sorry but that is not strictly true Apple give pretty good educational discounts on hardware and software in the UK at least and I'm pretty certain its the same everywhere else. I would say pound/dollar for pound/dollar FCP is pretty good value compared to an Adobe license, I bought it in 2008 and have never had to pay a penny since.
Oliver Peters wrote: If you use Avid Media Composer as an example, the feature set today is generally what existed by 2002 or so. Refinements came in terms of performance improvements, new resolutions and codecs, and so on. But operationally, the MC app has more or less been "locked" for two decades.
2002 was v11 of the old numbering. There have been a lot of revisions, features added & improvements made since then (although dupe detection existed back then). I get that folks love to bash Avid but it's still used for most high budget features and in news & sport departments across the world.
Do I still curse it every time I use it? Of course. Same as I do for PPro. And Resolve. Sadly FCPX has not proved visible in my world, cos I do like the database & magnetic timeline/connected clips a *lot*.
Avid is still avid (i.e. alive, well, under constant development and used by thousands of editors daily on the highest profile work). Obvs its Title tool is even more crap than it was in 2002.
PPro is bigger in terms of reach & revenue - the editors that would've bought a MBP back in the day to run FCP7 are now tied to a monthly sub to Adobe.
Nearly every working freelance editor I know has to be able to edit on both PP and Avid. They mostly don't know, or care about, FCPX (or Resolve / any other NLE).
Just to be clear, I've worked on Avid since nearly the beginning and still beta test current versions, along with use when a project dictates. When I said "locked" what I meant was that things like Symphony color correction, multicam editing, ScriptSync, PhraseFind, Intraframe editing (masking, paint effects, etc) and most of the general operational features were there by then.
In the pro world in the US, FCP is largely absent, except for individual users. I occasionally run across a producer who started an initial cut in FCP before turning it over to an editor. The use of it is not so much to edit, but more like the producer's scratch pad for ideas. But largely it's an Avid/Adobe world, with DaVinci Resolve a distant possibility.
In fact, I'm on the advisory committee for a local, private, media university, which early on was featured by Apple in an FCP (then X) user story. That college dumped its instruction of FCP years ago, because it simply didn't have any practical application for students expecting to move on in the film & TV world. And so Adobe CC is a default, with the BFA and MFA film students focused on Media Composer, as well as Pro Tools.
Part of the reason for this is that both Avid and Adobe have been very aggressive in courting the pro community. Apple has been unpredictable ranging to ambivalent. Unfortunately the pro community looks at it as "What have you done for me lately?" and that's not how Apple rolls. Clearly Avid has been very loyal to that community through good and bad times, because it's their primary market. At this stage, I'm not sure Apple could do anything to shift that balance and momentum, even with a rash of new features.
"Sorry but that is not strictly true Apple give pretty good educational discounts ..."
They are, honestly, average discounts, not tremendous. And that is the least all computer and software companies do. Go around to high schools and colleges and universities in the US, not a lot of Apple support to be found there anymore. Tons of free Adobe software to be found, though.
At this point, if it were paid I'd think you'd see a massive walk away to Resolve.
It would have to be so innovative that cost would have to be a worthwhile jump in workflow efficiency.
If the innovation involved a serious new learning curve that may also work to its detriment.
Of course, Apple may not care if that's the end result.
It should be an impressive enough tool to attract people to have them stick with the Mac platform without putting up more barriers.
Enough copies of FCP have been sold to make Apple millions of dollars, so the money is not an issue for them.
They are obviously focused on YouTubers, not TV broadcaster or feature film makers, and we'll just have to get used to that..
I think it’s time to put a fork in it and for everyone to move on with their lives. Final Cut Pro is a wonderful application and if it serves most of your needs, then celebrate that and be happy. If it doesn’t or only partially does, then use something else. Take a look at Apple’s other software - Pages, Keynote, Numbers, Photos, Logic. See any great feature advances lately? Nope.
Final Cut Pro is designed to show off Apple hardware and it does that quite well. So advances come in the form of OS compatibility, media performance enhancements, codec improvements, etc. It’s never going to be the sort of all-in-one, best-of-breed application that DaVinci Resolve strives to become. It’s unlikely to get the type of collaboration that Avid or even Adobe have. If anything, it *might* get some AI/ML advances, but even there, they are significantly behind Adobe.
Final Cut Pro was inherently designed with significant flaws, from the standpoint of broadcast users. That’s in part because it grew out of an enthusiast’s development mindset and not a team or broadcast mindset. That’s why XML exchange, AAF export, EDL export, and media consolidation were passed on to folks like Intelligent Assistance, Xmil, Marquis, and others.
It’s not that Apple couldn’t have included these features, but it would never be perfect, because of how FCP was designed. Therefore, Apple didn’t/doesn’t want to put their name on it and have to support those functions. Not to mention that Apple viewed something like EDL support as looking to the past, not the future. On the plus side, you can augment the application as needed, based on your own specialized use case, which keeps FCP light and agile. So take the good with the bad.
Final Cut Pro is a great tool and you can make of it what you need to. But stop wishing for the mythical FCP “extreme.” You are bound to be disappointed.
Well said Oliver. I would go further and say that FCP is the best editor, not the best compositor, colour corrector, audio mixer. If any of those are your priority than FCP will never be enough for you. If your main work is to shape stories through plowing through tons of footage and straight forward editing than FCP will make you very happy, way more than any of the others. And we have to be honest guys. We nerds feed on new features like drug addicts on their next hit. I have a feeling that Apple has FCP were it wants it to be and I agree w Oliver that most likely new big feature releases are not gonna happen anymore. So we should get busy using it and be comforted by the fact that, like the last update, Apple fully supports the app and fixes bugs in a very timely manor. No big feature release doesn’t mean FCP is again EOL!! Simplicity is actually an art not a flaw!
The problem is FCP seems an incomplete NLE compared to the others.
Most of the "new features" people need are catch up features existing elsewhere.
If FCP is the YouTube/Social Media tool Resolve's Smart Reframe seems to be an advantage. And while Resolve's Cut Page may not yet be all that it can be, they're thinking of the same market.
Who are all the smart organizational media tools for? Perhaps documentary or high shoot ratio productions. Which, once edited might be slowed down by the audio mixing tools needed but not there for that workflow. Keyframing and tracking which may be fairly important to such workflows are lacking.
What about Motion's intent and integration. The ability to create restricted parameters that can keep editors with certain guidelines in a multiseat corporate environment maybe? But the rest of that collaborative workflow is challenged.
BTW Pages isn't designed to sell Macs. It's a free included utility to cover basics for those who don't need to buy more expensive third-party WP/DTP programs.
If FCP's purpose is to sell Macs is it going to continue to do that as time goes on especially if one has to pay more for it than Resolve and much more once you start adding plugins to fill in the holes. Perhaps FCP really no longer serves a great purpose in Apple's computer sales and it's being left in maintenance mode.
What you are describing is the 'best in all areas' app. Resolves wants to be that. Adobe wants to provide you with a suite of apps to do that.
FCP doesn't want to do that. Or at least I would be more than surprised if the inventor nor the current managers would state that. FCP is a very easy tool to edit with, and to learn how to edit, if you do not need to un-learn previous track based approaches. It actually has all the tools to finish to the highest quality standards (eg. colour manipulation quality is on absolute par with Resolve, even if the toolset is way smaller), both in video and audio.
What it does is concentrate to be simple and nimble yet powerful.
As Oliver said: If you are after Final Cut Extreme you should switch now to Resolve or Premiere.
I actually disagree that FCP sells Macs or is even meant to do that. I think FCP is there because Apple knows that making movies is the future of story telling for the masses. And for people who hate bloated apps that want to be everything and are so complicated that you never fully use them, FCP is a fantastic alternative. Apple sells Macs to people who subscribe to their design philosophy. And FCP, Pages etc are expressions of those design principles. If FCP would be there to sell Macs it would be free. Much like Resolve is mostly free so you buy Blackmagic stuff.
So everyone agrees, FCP has become stagnant, no matter how you want to put a fancy bow on that, it's still stagnant. If you want to justify that by claiming it is geared for the YouTube market, that's fine. But let's all be honest and admit the factual truth, FCP is stagnant.
And we can agree that Apple has not lived up to its promise to be more open and communicative to the professional market.
And that FCP is an incomplete ecosystem, however you wish to justify that so you can feel better about it.
But, stagnant, not lived up to its own hype, incomplete after ten years, and has the word "Pro" in it but it's supposed to be a fully "pro" product.
I feel like there's a lot of heads in the sand here. Just my humble opinion. Apple needs to at least come out and state clearly what they're market is for Final Cut. But then, being vague has lead us on thus far...
Of course having a diff opinion means ‘having your head in the sand’. Feels great to be back to where we were 10 years ago, Not!
Thank you for bringing the discussion back to accusing others of stupidity..
cseeman wrote: ...Perhaps FCP really no longer serves a great purpose in Apple's computer sales and it's being left in maintenance mode.
Based on the limited rate of new features the past few years, you could conclude that. However we are in a transition period from the standpoint of software frameworks, languages and mobile devices. These might account for the superficial "stagnation" of FCP development. Classic FCP was a carbon framework app, I think written in straight C. It was constrained to 32 bits. So from a language and software framework standpoint, there was never any possibility of extending classic FCP to 64 bit, without a total rewrite. Classic FCP could have been re-written using Cocoa and Objective-C to produce something more conventional, but Apple chose to produce FCPX. It was a big job and almost any development team will wind down updates to the legacy app during an approx. two year period while the new app is being developed. We are now at a similar point where Cocoa and Objective-C are being replaced with other frameworks and the Swift language. There is a separate transition for the UI framework, currently AppKit on Mac and UIKit on iOS. This is especially important for the convergence between desktop and mobile devices.
Assuming it's possible to devise a full-featured version of a redesigned FCP for iPad OS, you definitely don't want a separate code tree with separate development and testing. You want as much code and UI commonality as possible. That is not possible using Cocoa and Objective-C. Hypothetically in the future you could develop a new version of FCP written in Swift and using the SwiftUI framework which would run on both Mac and iOS. Ideally they'd use Swift Concurrency to streamline multi-core scalability and thread safety. However to my knowledge SwiftUI is not currently capable of producing a highly complex app like FCP, Photoshop, etc.
If they are going to add collaborative features, it would make sense to leverage the CloudKit framework, not wedge in a complex client/server database like DaVinci Resolve. This would likely require major structural changes in the code base, not an incremental approach. In the WWDC21 talk on CloudKit, they didn't even mention Objective-C: https://developer.apple.com/videos/play/wwdc2021/10086/ Also over time, things are learned about software development. I worked on a major product where the debate was to either extend the legacy code base or start from scratch and re-write it. The decision was made to re-write it using a new language and different frameworks but that caused the legacy product to be placed in a maintenance mode for two years. It was ultimately the right decision as the new design was much more reliable and extensible. If anyone wonders why not just do both, it's generally unfeasible to simultaneously develop two major versions of a major app. It would require two development teams and two test teams and at that level the personnel are not available, no matter what the price.
Apple is so opaque that it's impossible to know whether a new version of FCP is being aggressively developed or have they lost interest. I optimistically think they are working on a new version but I have no proof of that.
Enjoyed the article Peter, and also the discussion. Ten years of hindsight brings a lot of useful learning for those who study paradigm shift and innovation.
I found this little video in my archives. You can see and hear lots of excitement at SuperMeet NAB2011 ... followed by a feeling of "HUH? What just happened?"
joema wrote: Apple is so opaque that it's impossible to know whether a new version of FCP is being aggressively developed or have they lost interest. I optimistically think they are working on a new version but I have no proof of that.
I think that would beg the question - is anyone here willing to go through yet another FCP7->FCPX style transition?