Glad to see this finally happen. Going back a couple of years they seemed as if they weren’t all that interesting in direct FCPX support. Granted it’s still most flexible to work in SonFire Pro directly as it gives you much more customization by hand.
The work is actually done in Sonicfire Pro. With the plugin, you lay out the generator to the time you need then click Generate Music in the Inspector. This opens Soncfire where you select and work on your music. When ready, click the “Send” button to import your customized soundtrack into FCPX as a new Event. In Final Cut Pro X, drag the newly imported SmartSound Music Clip onto the existing SmartSound Music Placeholder and choose either “Replace” or “Replace and Add To Audition”. Round tripping!
When FCP X came out in 2011, it broke the old Sonicfire Pro plugin. I checked with the company a few times and was told they were working on it. I think the interest has been there all along, it was just a matter of figuring out how to implement round tripping with FCP X.
You’re right Craig. Looks like I will have to upgrade SFP from 5.8.2 to 5.8.3 for $30, and the plugin is $50. So $80 for me to be able to use the plugin with Express Track which doesn’t have the full functionality of the main program as you pointed out. The plugin feature is pretty cool, especially being able to add to Audition. I might wait a bit before jumping on this.
I just found out that the upgrade from 5.8.2 to 5.8.3 is free. The paid upgrade was only to get to version 5.8, and future revisions to version 5.8 will be free.
Also, there is XML support, as I learned in an email from Tech Support:
There is another option available for using the FCPX plugin with the full timeline version of Sonicfire Pro. You can place all of your SmartSound placeholders onto your FCPX timeline, and add markers if you wish, then export the project as a FCPX-XML file. You can then import this XML file into Sonicfire Pro and all of the placeholders and markers will be available for you to use to create and customize the soundtrack on the Sonicfire Pro timeline. Then you will use File > Send To Plugin Host > Final Cut Pro X to send the audio file to your FCPX project as a new Event. The only difference is that since this audio file will contain the music for all the placeholders, you would simply place it on the timeline at the 00:00 mark instead of putting it on one of the placeholders.
I think leaving out FCP-XML information from the web site was a serious omission, that left unanswered questions and a negative impression of the plugin. Instructional videos would definitely sell this plugin. After all, we’re visual people working in a visual medium.