Apple's Lemon? Assessing the Final Cut Pro X Debacle

Huffington Post by Raymond Schllinger

Apple (at least in its 21st century incarnation) is not known for its stumbles. Even the handful of lackluster releases of the last decade -- Apple TV and MobileMe are oft-cited standouts -- can only be considered failures relative to the astronomical success of product lines such as iPod, iPhone, iPad and Mac.

Last Tuesday, Apple released Final Cut Pro X, the long-awaited update to its ubiquitous professional video editor. Within hours of its debut on the App Store, blogs and forums were buzzing with what should have been excitement. The ensuing pandemonium, however, was almost uniformly negative.

Open petitions of protest were filed. Memes were unleashed. Even Conan O'Brien chimed in with a sketch, humorously pieced together by his resentful editors (in Final Cut Pro X, of course).

So what exactly went wrong?

The unanimous charge was that Apple had forsaken the professional community by releasing a product that closely resembles the consumer video editing program iMovie (a step down from the more sterile but more comprehensive Final Cut Studio suite). Among the most cited complaints were the loss of the print-to-tape function (crucial for exporting in broadcast environments), a "dumbing down" of the editing feature set, no ability to monitor playback on an external screen, and a radical new raw file layout that abandoned some of the more traditional processing formats. Perhaps less surprising, there also appeared to be no way to import or edit projects created with the older Final Cut software. read more...

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