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  • What would Walter Murch think of FCPX 10.3?

    Posted by Mathieu Ghekiere on October 30, 2016 at 12:47 pm

    Well the title pretty much says it all. With the new Roles features, being able to focus on certain stuff, etc…
    In my opinion with this release I don’t understand how one could still defend tracks.
    The new lanes, combination with the magnetic timeline, the timeline index etc seems to combine the best of tracks with the best of the trackless FCPX.

    I would be very curious to hear what Walter Murch’ opinion is on it because he always seems like a very well-spoken and interesting guy to listen to. Someone who has access to him?
    A chance that Apple approached him?

    I can imagine that it could be something that he himself would be very curious to try.

    EDIT: you could open up the question even more for discussion and say: are Tracks (as we know them in other NLE’s) finally really obsolete now?
    I have difficulty imagining advantages for them compared to the FCPX system of lanes and how it works with a timeline index, where it CAN be re-arranged automatically without effort of the user during editing (except assigning roles first) and based on content (music, dialogue, etc.) instead of a ‘track 1-4, track 5-8’ system, but as always I am curious to see discussion about it.

    Scott Witthaus replied 7 years, 5 months ago 10 Members · 17 Replies
  • 17 Replies
  • Oliver Peters

    October 30, 2016 at 3:31 pm

    [Mathieu Ghekiere] “are Tracks (as we know them in other NLE’s) finally really obsolete now?”

    No. I don’t think it’s a question of advantages or disadvantages. Simply a matter of the preferred style of working.

    – Oliver

    Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
    Orlando, FL

  • Mike Warmels

    October 30, 2016 at 6:55 pm

    Well, Walter Murch said an editing system was, to him, basically three things:

    1. A video graphics programme
    2. A clock
    3. A database

    I think he was kinda lost on the database element of FCPX. At the time. It’s gotten a lot better, gotten more like the ‘traditional’ NLE’s. To me, I still think it could be better. A lot of the structuring is more cosmetic than actual folders. I don’t know how it is on FCP 10.3, but I would like to be able to import into Folders in one go. Not into the Event first and then move the Keyword Collections (which you have to create first) into the folder. It’s a double action, that I find rather bothersome.

  • Lance Bachelder

    October 30, 2016 at 7:50 pm

    I would think he would “get it” – being as much a sound designer as an Editor, I’ve never been happier with a timeline as I am with this new version. Hopefully he’ll take another look, though the only way to fully “get” FCPX is to start and finish a real gig with it – fiddling around is useless.

    It was at a Vegas premiere that I resolved to become an avid FCPX user.

    Lance Bachelder
    Writer, Editor, Director
    Downtown Long Beach, California

  • Scott Witthaus

    October 30, 2016 at 10:46 pm

    OK, this Walter Murch thing always fascinates me.

    I guess my first thought is “who cares?”. I mean really . He is a talented guy and probably very nice and interesting to talk to, but he has almost zero relevance to what I (and probably most other editors) do, day-in and day-out. And I would think Mr. Murch would probably say to most of us “why do you care what I think? Find out for yourself.”.

    If Walter like Premiere or Avid, more power to him. But his choices should not dictate mine or anyone else’s.

    Scott Witthaus
    Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
    1708 Inc./Editorial
    Professor, VCU Brandcenter

  • Oliver Peters

    October 30, 2016 at 11:04 pm

    The reason the question comes up is because this community – the FCP users – probably feel spurned that he moved on. I don’t see Avid editors asking what Walter Murch feels about the latest version of Media Composer. This is probably the most recent, which is about a year old.

    – Oliver

    Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
    Orlando, FL

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  • David Lawrence

    October 31, 2016 at 7:20 am

    [Oliver Peters] ” I don’t think it’s a question of advantages or disadvantages. Simply a matter of the preferred style of working.”

    I agree with Oliver.

    As much as I like the new lanes organization features (and believe me, I think they’re great!) the Magnetic Timeline v2 still doesn’t help with the kind of spatial workflows we discussed five years ago:

    Right now I’m working on a five-channel video installation. It would be a major PITA to build it in FCPX. I’d be fighting the magnetic timeline with every edit.

    Different tools for different jobs. Tracks still have their place in many workflows.

    David Lawrence

    facebook: /dlawrence
    twitter: @dhl

  • Mike Warmels

    October 31, 2016 at 9:57 am

    Well, this a guy who’s been in the business for a long time. He was also the guy who brought FCP into main stream movie editing, mind you. He was big in making FCP a serious NLE contender. Because he saw (at the time of FCP 3, mind you!!) the potential.

    But honestly, for movie editing, I am not so sure FCPX is that great. I know it’s being used for it, but the amount of audio sources you’d need to access and synch on a real movie is quite a bit of work. You need overview (Murch showed it once, what he had to deal with on average) and FCPX always looks like a jumble of audio sources, where you had rather limited control in creating some kind of visual overview without putting everything into groups or compound (which you then needed to access separately of you wanted to change anything).

    I read that little booklet of the editors doing FOCUS. But man, I got tired from just reading that. You sure need a lot of assistant editors to keep track of the workflows going back and forth, through XML’s, X2Pro relinking and what have ya.

    And his choices don’t dictate anything, he’s just an experienced editor who does know what he’s talking about. If you disagree fine. If you prefer to edit in Movie Maker or iMovie, just do it. But I still care about the opinion of other editors. Also of avid FCPX editors, because the knowledge base is great.

    No NLE is perfect… but in my experience of three years on FCPX, I think the problems… no, I should say, the PITFALLS of working with FCPX are so numerous, that even though it’s basic method of the magnetic timeline has benefits, it’s the infrastructure and the exchange with others (like finalising in a different editing suite, audio mixing, exports for broadcast, creating AAF’s) that still makes it rather clumsy in many respects.

    But… here’s hoping FCPX 10.3 takes a lot of the clumsiness away. Again: very happy with the audio lanes!

  • Andrew Kimery

    October 31, 2016 at 6:48 pm

    [Oliver Peters] “The reason the question comes up is because this community – the FCP users – probably feel spurned that he moved on.”


  • Shane Ross

    October 31, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    FCX is released.

    TV/FILM EDITORS: Man…what happened? This application isn’t usable by us at all!

    FCX Fans: Well, this isn’t really designed for you. You are 2% of the video market, and FCX is designed for the other 98%’s wants and needs. For us, it’s PERFECT!

    TV/FILM EDITORS: OK…looks like we’ll go back to Avid, and also look at Premiere Pro.

    FCX Fans: HEY!! Look! FCX was used to cut two feature films! Wow…the prestige it now has! TAKE THAT AVID!! See, it CAN be used to cut features…


    Not trying to be TOO snarky here, but this is how it feels. We TV/Film people complain that this doesn’t do most of the things we want done, FCX fans go “it isn’t designed to…it’s designed for our needs.” But then the FCX fans are all very ecstatic to point out that “IT WAS USED ON FOCUS! IT WAS USED ON WHISKEY TANGO FOXTROT! IT’S A PRO EDITOR FOR FILM PEOPLE!” And now you are seeking the advice of Walter Murch on this app…why? First you don’t care, then you do. First it doesn’t matter, then it does. “We don’t need Hollywood’s blessing for this…. but really, it would be cool to have their blessing on this.”

    Some people keep looking at what Hollywood uses as their go-to reasoning for getting an editing app. When we all know that what Hollywood uses isn’t always best for what your needs are. When I didn’t do Hollywood stuff, when I did corporate video, I looked at Avid like, “ewwww,” and looked at Media 100 like “Yesssssss!” And then at FCP Legacy like “Even more yessss!” But then I liked it so much, and it solved a very specific need I needed for editing a TV show, that I used it.

    Don’t seek validation for the app from Hollywood…you don’t need it. That’s the point I’m trying to make. Albiet in a snarky manner, I’ll admit. 🙂

    Little Frog Post
    Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def

  • Mathieu Ghekiere

    October 31, 2016 at 7:31 pm

    Well, you are being snarky indeed ?

    For one, I never said Walter Murch’s opinion isn’t important or that the opinion of people in the business didn’t matter. Although I know you probably weren’t talking about me specifically (although I started the thread).
    Because I think someone with Murch’s credentials, and an influencial book, and his changing to FCP when he was one of the first to do it on a big scale, makes me interested in his opinion.

    He also had very specific reasons for not wanting to work with FCPX.
    I’m wondering how someone that has won oscars for his sound editing, would think about a system like those new roles and audio lanes.

    And again, I also want to broaden the discussion to why tracks still have relevance. I was ‘raised’ with tracks too. I really had to get used to the magnetic timeline, and I didn’t like it in the beginning either. But now I can’t see myself going back to them. And a lot of people, even people who liked the magnetic timeline, said that they missed the visual overview even with Roles, because they were scattered, in audio they were all green, etc. …
    I am interested in hearing people’s feedback.

    For myself, I have the feeling that the whole idea that it’s based on content, and it doesn’t get in your way DURING creative editing, while with the new features it still holds a lot of visual overview and even automatic ‘track-management’ or automatic ‘visual-organisation-in-the-timeline’ management, I don’t see how one could go back to the system where you have to make sure you click the right stuff before you put a new shot in. But again, I very much enjoy the discussion.

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