Final Cut Pro X is “just not set up to be used professionally” – Kirk Baxter, Academy Award-winning editor

EW has a great article “Is Apple’s Final Cut Pro X first rate or a big mistake? An Academy Award-winning editor weighs in“, read it in full. Here is a brief excerpt from “first rate or a big mistake“,

““There’s a little too much hating,” [Kirk] Baxter explained. “The guys from Apple came out and showed Angus Wall and myself [the program], and a lot of it I thought was absolutely amazing. It really, really was smart. It just seems they’ve basically put the software together for laptop users, which I understand — I’m sure every student in America is going to have one, just not the industrialzied world. It seems to be very clever and user friendly; it’s just not set up to be used professionally.

Baxter was also clear about the problems with the editing platform: “It needs a few key things. In order for us to do a [David] Fincher film on it, you’ve got to be able to switch between multiple cameras, so with that right there, we can’t use it. Secondly, it only has one viewer monitor, and we use source material, select material, and then our edit material, so we use three monitors. You can kind of force yourself to change, but why? It might be better if you’re working on a laptop, but if you’ve got three monitors to work from, then it’s not better — it’s constricting.”

As far as the future is concerned, Baxter isn’t planning on switching to Pro X anytime soon. “I assume I’m going to be working on Final Cut 7 until they upgrade the new model to professional standards, and if they don’t do it, then I imagine all of us will end up aborting and finding a new platform to work on, but I honestly think their money is in laptop editing — there are just more of those people than professional editors — so I don’t think they’re sweating it…. I’d imagine people are going to stall on embracing it until it is of more professional use.”

Here is a reader’s comment by a user “David Thu 06/30/11 6:03 PM” that makes a ton of sense (emphasis added),

““You can use Final Cut Pro 7 for the next three or four years and have no problems with it.”
Sadly not true if you’re a professional editor. It’s been barely a week since the FCP X release and I’m already having major headaches editing with FCP 7. I need to add edit stations for a big job coming up and because Apple discontinued FCP 7, I cannot purchase the software for these new machines. Also, with the rapid pace of changing camera technology, will there be FCP 7 support for future cameras/codecs if it’s a defunct product? Doubtful. How will I explain that to a client in a year: “Sorry, I’m running a software platform that’s been discontinued for a year so I can’t work with your footage.” Running a business based on FCP 7 presents real risks now. Apple should have kept FCP 7 on the market until FCP X was up to snuff for professionals.”

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2 Responses to Final Cut Pro X is “just not set up to be used professionally” – Kirk Baxter, Academy Award-winning editor

  1. John Spirou says:

    I am a PRO user too, and LOVED FCPX… why ?
    Many years ago, i made editing and graphics too , in Quantels machines and loved them too. I liked the one monitor solution and thought it would be nice to find a way to work in editing too..

    Now FCPX is out and its like that… combustion was like this too.
    I dont need two viewers to make an edit… is so old now.
    We have to move on…. dont be afraid !

  2. kempton says:

    Thanks for sharing your view John. Kirk is stating how he (and also some other editors) feel about FCPX, specifically in terms of how he edited “The Social Network”, etc.

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