FCPX and the Domino Effect Pt 2: Knocking Them Down

Creative COW by Walter Soyka

In Part 1 of this series, I described the long string of impressive investments and innovations that Apple made around Final Cut Pro during its first decade on the market. Apple took a third-party product and built an entire post-production ecosystem around it.

Apple changed the face of post-production, adding capabilities and slashing costs. Final Cut Studio was a transformative force in the content creation industry, enabling even one-man studios like mine to comfortably compete in a space that had been the domain of much larger facilities due to high barriers to entry and massive capital requirements only a decade before.

However, at the same time that Apple's consumer products took off in the market, Apple made a series of decisions that have led many to question their dedication to professional content creators, culminating with the release of FCPX.

Deciding Not to Decide

Once I saw how different FCPX was from FCP, I revisited my previous strategy of automatically upgrading FCP at each new release and ignoring other offerings.

There are some really compelling features in FCPX, like color management, linear floating point compositing, pervasive metadata, support for 4K frame sizes, and OpenCL processing over multiple CPU cores and GPUs. However, since the initial release of FCPX lacked features I need in order to work (legacy project support, video monitoring, and interchange with other applications), I knew I would have to start considering my other options. I wasn't initially concerned with the "big" questions about Apple's place in the industry - I was only concerned with making sure that I'd still be able to keep my clients happy and handle all the work that came through the door. read more...

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