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Forums Apple Final Cut Pro X warning: do not open your media files in another program

  • warning: do not open your media files in another program

  • John Pale

    July 17, 2011 at 5:22 pm

    Since FCP X does not have the ability, as far as I can tell, to export stills from the timeline, I loaded the media file into FCP 7 and did it from there. When I returned to FCP X, the media file now is read as offline, even though its in the same place.

    There is no relinking mechanism to get the file back online. I think somehow opening the clip in another program can mess up the unique metadata that FCP X requires for linkage.

    Re editing this clip back into my timeline will be a pain, since FCP X also has no timecode overlays for me to match it.

    Ugh. Be careful if you work with the same media in other programs.

  • Craig Seeman

    July 17, 2011 at 5:42 pm

    I’m cutting and pasting from another post. I hope this might give you an idea about the issue.
    _____

    FCPX is using more metadata to identify the file than other programs (NLEs) so if the metadata changes, FCPX does not see it as the same file. Keep in mind the other side of the issue, that may have resulted in this implementation. That was FCP legacy making the connection to the wrong file.

    FCPX is still seems very primitive in some aspects. One might guess there will eventually be a “safe” way to reconnect to files altered in another program.

    It may have been a “common procedure” precisely because previously NLEs were sloppy in what they could reconnect to. Of course the other extreme can be problematic is well.

    Think about how FCPX works and then think about what might be done to improve that. Think in the context of database management and it might point to something Apple can implement. Currently you’d be asking the database to “ignore fields” to accept a modified file as a replacement for the original and that can be havoc for a database. Eventually it may have to more like “create new fields” on reconnection when encountering metadata that is created from other programs.

  • John Pale

    July 17, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    Thats all well and good Craig, but I think you have to expect an NLE to deal with this somehow, even in Version 1. There is a whole host of reasons why someone editing would want to use other programs with the same media (After Effects, etc) in addition to FCPX. Its not really practical to make duplicate media files to prevent FCP from losing track of things. Mind you, all I did was open the file and play it down…I am not attempting to replace the original with its content modified.

    Anyhoo…be careful everyone.

  • Craig Seeman

    July 17, 2011 at 6:29 pm

    [John Pale] “but I think you have to expect an NLE to deal with this somehow, even in Version 1”

    I’m not sure why I’d have to expect that. One can hope for it of course. We don’t know what hurdles, difficulties, challenges, the programers are facing so we don’t know what they could get done for the release date. Of course we have no idea if this will be improved but that’s really a different story.

    The threshold for what to expect in a version one is subjective on our part, a resources and business decision on Apple’s part. With any program, sometimes the twain do not meet on version one.

    The fact that you can’t even roundtrip to Motion indicates that Apple has some things about handing off and modifying metadata internally.

    [John Pale] “Mind you, all I did was open the file and play it down”

    Which shows you how apps might modify metadata in ways hidden to the user. Perhaps such app (the programmers) believe such modification is harmless . . . and may be the correct assumption with most NLEs or other tools in the post workflow.

    Apparently in Apple’s case, they are very strict about the metadata handling. Rather than making it more permissive, Apple may want to develop ways to handle such changes with greater specificity but they aren’t their yet in their programming. Time will tell but I really think this is what Apple is focusing on. I really think they’re gearing towards more control (even by the end user) but that’s a harder road for the programmers to travel.

  • Nick Toth

    July 17, 2011 at 6:44 pm

    As far as exporting a still it’s under “Sharing”. It seems to take longer than it should FYI:

    Export an image from your project
    You can save a single image file of any video frame in your project.

    Save a still frame
    Select the project, and in the Timeline, place the playhead at the frame you want to save, and choose Share > Save Current Frame.

    Choose a format from the Export pop-up menu.

    To see details about the file that will be output, click Summary.

    To scale the output file to use square pixels and maintain the original aspect ratio (which results in an increase or decrease in the number of horizontal and vertical pixels), select “Scale image to preserve aspect ratio.”

    The checkbox affects only projects whose video resolution uses non-square pixels, such as NTSC and PAL formats. If the checkbox is not selected (the default setting), the output file uses the same pixel aspect ratio and has the same number of horizontal and vertical pixels as the original video.

    Click Next.

    Type a name and choose a location for the saved file, and click Save.

    Final Cut Pro renders and saves your still image file.

    NT

  • TS O’Grady

    July 17, 2011 at 6:45 pm

    [John Pale] “Since FCP X does not have the ability, as far as I can tell, to export stills from the timeline,”

    If you’re referring to making a freeze freme from the timeline that can be done with “Save Current Frame” from the Share menu. You can choose from a short menu what type of file and where you’d like save it. Once saved you have to import it into FCP X (an extra inelegant step). I did just that and saved it as a psd file and then opened it in photoshop, made a change and it updated in FCP X no problem.
    Also, I just imported a still image file into FCP X and then opened it in photoshop and made a change. I went back into FCP X and the file was still online with the change I made updated. I take it you’re talking more about video clips that are opened in AE and other programs. So far I can work with still images in and out of photoshop the same as I did in FCP7.

  • John Pale

    July 17, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    [Craig Seeman] “I’m not sure why I’d have to expect that.”

    Well Craig, this is FCP X v1, not NLE version 1. I think having some very basic expectations about what is required in editing software isn’t out of line. Off the bat, I can’t thing of a single NLE, at any point in its development, that would have a problem with playing its media files in another program. I’ve worked with FCP 1-7, Avid, M100, VideoCube & Sphere, Premiere. I realize no other NLE prior to FCPX has been so reliant on metadata, but isn’t it on Apple to expect that some other programs might be used in editing? While they are acknowledging its missing features..they are not calling FCPX beta software…they are, in fact charging for it. Should we have no expectations at all? Should we just be thankful it can put two shots together? Where should the line be drawn?

    I actually can understand to a large degree it losing the linkage…but offering no way to relink…AND no way to provide source timecode from the timeline, is really unbelievable. I just had to re-edit a whole section based on my own memory of the edits.

    Believe me…I am trying to use this with an open mind and I am giving it a long leash. The ugly and unproductive ranting on the other FCPX forum is really getting over the edge. I am not complaining about the missing “pro” features everyone knows about…but after a couple of days on it, it really does seem like the interface was not tested with anyone who has actually edited for a living. There are way too many small things that keep coming up, that clearly haven’t been thought through.

  • John Pale

    July 17, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    Thanks. I did look in the help, but i missed it somehow.

    [Nick Toth] “As far as exporting a still it’s under “Sharing”. It seems to take longer than it should FYI:”

  • John Pale

    July 17, 2011 at 7:03 pm

    [TS O'Grady] “I take it you’re talking more about video clips that are opened in AE and other programs. So far I can work with still images in and out of photoshop the same as I did in FCP7.”

    Yep. I’ll have to do some testing with media not in the project I am currently editing. Thanks.

  • Craig Seeman

    July 17, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    [John Pale] “Well Craig, this is FCP X v1, not NLE version 1. I think having some very basic expectations about what is required in editing software isn’t out of line. “

    Programmers deal with hard realities we editors don’t. Your expectations doesn’t mean they can meet their deadlines . . . no matter how badly you “expect” something. Programmers face all sorts of logistics when it comes to prioritization.

    Given what I believe they’re doing with FCPX, I can understand why the first want to make something functional in a self contained environment because outside interaction can add layers of complexity to the programming.

    FCPX is from scratch. It’s point is the beginning as far as the programmer is concerned. This has nothing to do with what marketing does . . . even if that disconnect is a problem.

    [John Pale] “I realize no other NLE prior to FCPX has been so reliant on metadata”

    . . . and AV Foundation. Good or bad, Apple (chose) to place themselves in unchartered territory.

    Please don’t conflate bad marketing with programming. Marketing did a bad job managing expectations. Managers overseeing both apparently did a bad job as well.

    Personally my use or evaluation of FCPX is independent of their marketing and management. FCPX is a good work in progress in my opinion. The marketing and management is an example of failure also in my opinion.

    Ultimately my decision to use or not use FCPX will not be dependent on their marketing . . . but their mismanagement can impact that if FCPX does not advance to meet my needs.

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