- May 2, 2020 at 12:46 pm
[Jeremy Garchow] “Try it. Take an mxf file, make any file format you want with matching audio, and try to relink it, automatically. It won’t happen.”
I just imported several MXF files using “leave files in place”, shut down FCPX, renamed each file, moved each file to a new subfolder, then deleted the symlinks in the library which pointed to those files, and upon re-launching FCPX it automatically relinked them instantly and re-created the symlinks to the new locations and filenames.
- May 2, 2020 at 1:28 pm
[Joe Marler] “I just imported several MXF files using “leave files in place”, shut down FCPX, renamed each file, moved each file to a new subfolder, then deleted the symlinks in the library which pointed to those files, and upon re-launching FCPX it automatically relinked them instantly and re-created the symlinks to the new locations and filenames.”
Sure but that doesn’t help when you need to link to transcoded material.
It’s not about linking to the same files, it’s about linking to different files with the same characteristics (audio channels, tc, length) but different file extensions.
So if do you the same test, but transcode those files mov or mp4 first, you will not get fcpx to automatically link to anything but the original media (whether it’s renamed or not).
Or, do an even easier test, Optimize the media and try to relink the MXF file to the folder of .movs created by FCPX automatically. It won’t happen, you will only be able to relink one by one pointing fcpx at the exact file you are trying to link to. And doing that with the FCPX interface is extremely time consuming. So FCPX can’t even link to the .mov media it creates from the master MXF files, which to me, makes exactly zero sense.
I cannot distribute the 50TBs of media on our server remotely and by staying at home (of which Chicago is on lockdown until at least the end of this month, and I would imagine it will get extended since the COVID infection numbers aren’t going down), but I could do it if we could use proxy files. The ability to relink from other file formats to other file formats would be most welcome. So while, yes, inode linking can work, it only works in a very specific use case.
- May 2, 2020 at 2:08 pm
[Tom Sefton] “Gahhhhhh you can’t be serious.”
I’m absolutely serious. There are plenty of ways to make comparisons that skew one way or the other. There are certainly cases where I feel FCPX is a better fit. But it’s not the universal solution for me.
I have two main issues with FCPX. The UI is “sticky” – meaning every action – to click on something – takes a split second longer that in Premiere, where it’s largely instant. Relinking is the second. I’ve taken home media from archive drives to WFH. The FCPX Library linking is based on the shared storage locations at the office. I have had to move assets from multiple drives onto a single RAID, so paths are completely a mess. Relinking in FCPX is nearly impossible. Premiere – I can point to the new locations and I’m good to go.
I don’t work with a new Mac Pro. I don’t have enough media in any given project that would benefit from an Afterburner card. So that’s a non-issue for me and will be for a while to come.
Audio mixing on complex jobs in FCPX? A complete mess with multiple compounds, because there is no track-based mixer or roles-based mixer. Can you do it? Sure. But not in a way that’s conducive to any normal way of mixing. For example, change a filter on a clip, which is buried inside a compound with more effects on the role – all while still listening to the effect through a compressor on the master output? Easy in Premiere with track, submaster, and master tracks/buses. Not possible in FCPX.
[Tom Sefton] “I know it’s another string to your bow as an editor, but how has premiere seemingly got worse than resolve?”
I didn’t say that it was. But in terms of the editor UI – I feel Premiere is a better editor. I’m also not fond of the database method for project files used by Resolve. Trimming is the biggest issue for me in Resolve and J-cut/L-cut trimming with embedded audio isn’t possible yet in the cut page.
Oliver Peters – oliverpeters.com
- May 2, 2020 at 2:14 pm
[Tom Sefton] “Skim your play head around the timeline in premiere – it sticks to random sections like (molasses) and when you hit space bar it thinks. Not for long, but long enough for you to believe that something is happening….”
This is likely based on codec or maybe you haven’t let it complete the building of cache files before starting. But I see these same issues with FCPX.
[Tom Sefton] “Just as a test I thought I’d sling the same footage at premiere that we are working on in fcpx. Multiple layers of 4/6K 60p ProRes 4444 footage with 2 colour adjustment layers on each, masks etc.. That….was hilarious.”
A completely unfair comparison, because FCPX can take advantage of the Afterburner card and Premiere doesn’t yet. Not the normal use case for someone with an older Mac Pro, iMac, or iMac Pro.
Oliver Peters – oliverpeters.com
- May 2, 2020 at 3:38 pm
[Tom Sefton] “This works perfectly with r3d to .mov”
Indeed it does. It’s the only one that works, and it might have to do with the red software “Apple workflow” component, but I’m not sure.
- May 2, 2020 at 3:57 pm
Prores? That’s native for an apple machine and a supported mastering codec for premiere – it really shouldn’t be struggling with a single layer of footage at 2K resolution to playback. I’d be fine doing that on a MacBook Air with fcp.
The only ever time I see any non immediate response from fcp is with high resolution raw files when you have it set to best quality. I just can’t find any comparable level of performance between the two. Resolve is a close second to fcp at the moment, and it makes use of afterburner which is odd that premiere can’t?
Co-owner at Pollen Studio
- May 2, 2020 at 5:32 pm
[Jeremy Garchow] “Indeed it does. It’s the only one that works”
You are correct, the auto-relink based on inode is very slick but it only works within a single disk volume.
There are some cases where manual relink to externally-generated or transcoded files fails. It works with Sony XAVC-S .mp4 files, RED camera-generated proxies and others. It fails with MXF files and some old AVI DVC material I tested – even IF using proxies generated by FCPX itself and copied externally.
The reason seems to be a difference in audio metadata. Either the audio data in the original files is not written correctly or FCPX is simply mis-handling the audio in the transcoded file, or mis-handling the check itself. In some cases it inappropriately fails. Using Invisor’s side-by-side comparison I can see some parameters of the audio are different between the original file and the proxy generated by FCPX – just blank in some fields.
In my MXF and AVI test files the audio plays OK in both original and transcoded files but during the relink FCPX complains “Incompatible file – the original file had audio, but the new file doesn’t”. The transcoded file has audio and it plays OK.
That’s not a feature deficiency, it’s just a bug. It should work.
I’ve also seen cases where media imported within an FCPX managed library will not allow relink to the original offloaded file, except one at a time. In this case it’s not re-wrapped, the file was just copied to the library and renamed by FCPX during import.
Unfortunately the media file header is not composed of neat alphanumeric fields that you could easily tweak with a hex editor but includes complex, conditionally-encoded binary values: https://developer.apple.com/library/archive/documentation/QuickTime/QTFF/QTFFChap3/qtff3.html#//apple_ref/doc/uid/TP40000939-CH205-75770
There is another half-implemented undocumented feature that indicates Apple has worked on this but not to completion: You can move media files to a new drive then create Finder aliases via OPT+CMD drag and copy those to the symlink folder within the library, and usually FCPX will re-read those and generate updated symlinks. But it doesn’t always work.
Everybody complaining about this is correct — this entire area needs a lot of work. Unfortunately both Apple and much of the FCPX community places a lot of emphasis on visible user-facing features, but there are poorly implemented system-facing issues that need major work.
- May 2, 2020 at 5:48 pm
[Tom Sefton] “it really shouldn’t be struggling with a single layer of footage at 2K resolution to playback.”
No problem with Premiere either. I work with 4K ProRes on my mid-2014 MBP in Premiere without issue. Although 4K is a bit dependent on the drive in that case. 1080 or 2K, no problem at all.
I wonder if you are having a drive performance/optimization/cache issue? Is this on shared storage? If so, what sort of network? It could also be Catalina related. Just speculating, since I have thus far avoided Catalina.
Oliver Peters – oliverpeters.com
- May 2, 2020 at 6:38 pm
No just on a thunderbolt 2 attached Gspeed XL drive. Gets nearly 900MB/s and works fine in fcpx.
I can only think there must be something hellishly wrong with the install of premiere.
Quick workaround – xml to resolve.
Co-owner at Pollen Studio
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