Apple announces Final Cut Pro 10.4 with support for VR, HDR, HEVC, more

Posted:
in Mac Software edited October 2017
Apple at the Final Cut Pro X Creative Summit on Friday debuted Final Cut Pro 10.4, a hotly anticipated update to the flagship professional video editing suite that includes support for VR, HDR footage, direct integration for iOS video and more.


Source: Richard Taylor via Twitter


Video professionals attending the event were invited to go hands-on with the new software at Apple's 1 Infinite Loop campus, some of whom posted what they saw online.

Providing a fairly in depth synopsis was FCPX plugin developer Alex Gollner, who chronicled the update's highlights on Twitter. Of note, while Apple is not releasing a new version of FCPX, the 10.4 update is bristling with new features that the company showed off using unreleased iMac Pro workstations.

First on the list is support for true virtual reality video. Final Cut Pro's timeline has been updated to support VR footage, including clip orientation, with compatibility for two different head-mounted display feeds. VR integration extends to Motion 5, Apple's motion graphics and special effects software.

As expected, version 10.4 will support all the tools offered in noted plugin maker Tim Dashwood's 360VR toolbox. Dashwood was hired by Apple in April.

#vr video in the next version of Final Cut Pro X #fcpx at Apple today pic.twitter.com/mTeXee1CXm

-- Alex Gollner (@Alex4D)


Additionally, the editing package receives support for HDR Rec. 2020 alongside a new slate of color controls including a color picker and color wheels.

Users who own the latest iPhones, like iPhone 8, 8 Plus and X, will be able to open 4K HEVC footage in FCPX timelines. HEVC, also known as H.265, is a video compression protocol that promises to halve file sizes while maintaining superior image quality. Apple adopted the codec in iOS 11 and macOS 10.13 High Sierra.

Apple has not announced a firm release date, but says the next version of FCPX will be available some time this year. More information about the software is expected to come from Apple itself in the near future.

Final Cut Pro was last updated in May when version 10.3.4 saw release. The professional editing suite is available for purchase from the App Store for $299.99.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 16
    sergiozsergioz Posts: 196member
    Finally, I've been waiting for this update!
    mdriftmeyerracerhomie
  • Reply 2 of 16
     :( I think it's just too late. In the video world we support everyone's moved off onto Premiere. You kept them hanging for far too long. 

    Its a shame, but you've missed the boat on this Apple. Keep going though Adobe has a monopoly everywhere else it's good for them to have some competition. 
    edited October 2017
  • Reply 3 of 16
    palegolaspalegolas Posts: 1,241member
    Final Cut Pro x is speed. That’s why at least I’m using it. All of these updates are cool. But I’m surprised they haven’t announced a proper colour grading update. Color Finale is great, but pro grading really should be part of FCPX.

    No word on Compressor and hevc encoding yet?
    racerhomie
  • Reply 4 of 16
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,447member
    ". . . with compatability for two different head-mounted display feeds." — I assume this could mean "support for left and right tracks for true stereo 3D." 

    If that's the meanng intended, it might be helpful to spell it out. For my own reasons, I've been waiting a long time for native 3D support in Final Cut. Maybe it's finally here, coming in through the back door because of VR.
  • Reply 5 of 16
    Just a note: There is nothing about video that makes it “virtual reality”. Even livestreamed 360° video is not virtual. It’s still video. Virtual reality is an immersive artificial environment.
  • Reply 6 of 16
    I love FCPX. It’s a great editing tool. My main editing tool.

    But I agree with what’s posted here: Resolve has caught up in a big way by offering professional coloring tools (and adding editing later on) which they offer by switching between ’tabs’ where the interface becomes coloring focused vs editing focused.
    Also, Resolve includes 2D/3D tracking (which you can do with a plug-in in FCPX but really doesn’t feel integrated).
    The reason why I don’t use Resolve that much for editing is that FCPX’s magnetic timeline is a joy to use, and overall speed is really impressive.

    I guess the FCPX development team is very small. Maybe adding engineers to focus on coloring and/or buying up Mocha Pro or something would be a good step for them?

    Also, Motion has become a really weird set of features and limitations. Again, Blackmagic and Adobd seem to have their bases covered there.  Motion is useless and Apple doesn’t seem to put the R&D in to offer amazing things like Adobe announced recently. By now I think it’s even better to drop Motion entirely and integrate whatever was useful into FCPX. At least FCPX has earned its position - as long as they up the pace on innovation.
    racerhomiepatchythepiratechia
  • Reply 7 of 16
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,148moderator
     :( I think it's just too late. In the video world we support everyone's moved off onto Premiere. You kept them hanging for far too long. 

    Its a shame, but you've missed the boat on this Apple. Keep going though Adobe has a monopoly everywhere else it's good for them to have some competition. 
    Apple announced they had 2 million seats of FCP X, which is a pretty sizeable audience. Adobe has around 10-12m subscribers of their overall software. In 2012, Adobe said they had 2.5m Premiere users ( https://www.beet.tv/2012/09/adobepremiere.html ). Not being available on 90% of the world's desktops is always going to limit Apple's software. FCP X is a good choice for independent editors and online publishers. The performance is better than Premiere:

    http://www.fcp.co/final-cut-pro/articles/1710-final-cut-pro-x-v-adobe-premiere-pro-render-and-export-speed-tests

    Apple didn't have much choice but to rebuild FCP from the ground up and the performance they gained from doing that is a huge benefit. There are people who have changed hardware and can't easily go back and don't have a desire to go back but there are new customers that will use it.

    The more features they add and the more that people figure out how to get it to work for them, the more that people will use it. Apple has more freedom now to add features. Potential features might include adjustment layers where you add an effects clip to span over multiple clips and fade their effect in/out (and link them to the affected clips):

    https://helpx.adobe.com/premiere-pro/using/help-tutorials-adjustment-layers.html

    Being able to lock individual clips so they are stuck in the timeline and other clips get cropped around them. Being able to choose more export settings inside FCP X instead of relying on Compressor.

    One thing that could be useful for online authoring is being able to sync the edit and the authoring where if there's a mistake seen in an upload, they don't have to encode and upload the entire clip. Maybe they messed up a name somewhere in the timeline, they could adjust it and it would flag that it's out of sync with authored version and then sync the portion that was changed. That would need support from Youtube/Vimeo (or an intermediate cloud service e.g chunk to Apple, full video sent out with faster upload) but Apple could also provide HTML5 streaming tools for people who host their own videos and do chunk authoring, which offers some video protection but they just upload the chunks that were changed. Auto-subtitles with Siri, auto-tagging with CoreML.

    Apple removed some things in order to protect editors from common mistakes and sometimes they are needed:

    https://layersmagazine.com/premiere-pro-cs4-sync-lock.html

    One important example is the connections override:



    Apple put it behind the tilde/grav key, I don't know how anybody is supposed to figure that out on their own. Command-alt-click for the connection position too. Their list of shortcuts is pretty long:

    https://support.apple.com/kb/PH12724?locale=en_US

    The clip connections helps keep clips together but they could do more complex connections manually like you might want to keep two video clips the same distance apart so they could allow linking anything just by selecting them and command-L or something. Then they all get moved together. Audio locked to multiple video tracks. Attribute locking like volume, scale, color. Swift scripting support so you could do things like resync/brighten all clips with a certain tag or name in code.

    Eventually, the feature set will be enough that it suffices for most editing tasks and it will just need people to adapt to the shortcuts and workflow. The editors who migrated to Premiere will have gone through a long migration process and would have to do the same back again so it won't happen suddenly and there will always be some bad feelings about it. But it's not as if it's a utopia anywhere, all software has its own quirks and bugs. Windows PCs are not something everyone wants to spend their days using so a lot of Premiere users will still be on the Mac and FCP X will always be improving and sitting in their Applications folder whenever they need to use it. People can use different editors for different jobs.

    Apple uses the software themselves for their own marketing videos so it's not as if they are just throwing something out there, they just tend to design more around their own needs first, which doesn't cover everybody and then they have to build it out based on the feedback they get.
    edited October 2017 Rayz2016patchythepiratechia
  • Reply 8 of 16
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,065member
    I wonder how many new features will only be available or useable with newer hardware.  I purchased a 2014, 6 core Mac Pro specifically for FCPro X use.  I suspect I'll need to replace with a 2018 new Mac Pro it to take advantage of the new abilities and especially 4K work with H265 unless CPU/ GPU upgrades are an option but I doubt that route would be cost effective not to mention obsolete I/O.
  • Reply 9 of 16
    Apple is too unreliable for a pro to invest his experience in their pro software, like FCP or Motion. You just don’t know if they’re gonna update it or kill it. Adobe is a more reliable company when it comes to creative software, they update their stuff often.

    I am no fan of Adobe. I think they still don’t understand the needs of a web designer/developer or have a clue in which direction the web is heading, but they’re reliable, and that is super important for a pro to invest his experience in their tools.
    edited October 2017 maciekskontakt
  • Reply 10 of 16
    JinTechJinTech Posts: 282member
    Apple is too unreliable for a pro to invest his experience in their pro software, like FCP or Motion. You just don’t know if they’re gonna update it or kill it. Adobe is a more reliable company when it comes to creative software, they update their stuff often.

    I am no fan of Adobe. I think they still don’t understand the needs of a web designer/developer or have a clue in which direction the web is heading, but they’re reliable, and that is super important for a pro to invest his experience in their tools.
    They would not continually update it if they are going to kill it. Further more, they would not be making the iMac Pro if they wanted you to run just Adobe products.
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 11 of 16
    Apple is too unreliable for a pro to invest his experience in their pro software, like FCP or Motion. You just don’t know if they’re gonna update it or kill it. Adobe is a more reliable company when it comes to creative software, they update their stuff often.

    I am no fan of Adobe. I think they still don’t understand the needs of a web designer/developer or have a clue in which direction the web is heading, but they’re reliable, and that is super important for a pro to invest his experience in their tools.
    2012 called, wants its bs back.
    StrangeDaysmacxpress
  • Reply 12 of 16
    Apple is too unreliable for a pro to invest his experience in their pro software, like FCP or Motion. You just don’t know if they’re gonna update it or kill it. Adobe is a more reliable company when it comes to creative software, they update their stuff often.

    I am no fan of Adobe. I think they still don’t understand the needs of a web designer/developer or have a clue in which direction the web is heading, but they’re reliable, and that is super important for a pro to invest his experience in their tools.
    Soo...

    Adobe is on the wrong track and they update their software often!

    Paraphrased:  It gets you where you don’t want to go quicker!
    SpamSandwichchia
  • Reply 13 of 16
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,581member
    Premiere's the slowest crap I've ever used (and I've used it on and off since the start), seems no system is big enough to run it properly (so very very bad design). It's not even best at anything it really does, it is living on its integration with the rest of the suite.

    Premiere's got all the disadvantages of Photoshop, with almost none of the advantages.
    edited October 2017
  • Reply 14 of 16
    FCPX is a flexible, excellent platform. I too switched to Adobe for a while, and then when they went to the cloud, I gave FCPX another shot. I'm so glad I did. It's a faster system for many reasons, it's been so gratifying to see Apple keeping it up to date.
  • Reply 15 of 16
    JinTech said:
    Apple is too unreliable for a pro to invest his experience in their pro software, like FCP or Motion. You just don’t know if they’re gonna update it or kill it. Adobe is a more reliable company when it comes to creative software, they update their stuff often.

    I am no fan of Adobe. I think they still don’t understand the needs of a web designer/developer or have a clue in which direction the web is heading, but they’re reliable, and that is super important for a pro to invest his experience in their tools.
    They would not continually update it if they are going to kill it. Further more, they would not be making the iMac Pro if they wanted you to run just Adobe products.
    Well, Aperture and the original FCP were updated, and suddenly killed. So, that doesn’t mean anything. Any business decision at some meeting can suddenly end their software. Apple has proven extremely unreliable for pro apps, and that makes sense since it’s not their core business. They never share their roadmap or have a consistent update pace. They can make pros feel like they’ve abandoned them, and then suddenly out of nowhere update their software. 
    And I don’t agree with your iMac Pro comment. They didn’t create these machines for their own software at all, but to avoid pro brand ambassadors switching to Windows to get some seriour computing done. They made it for VR developers, scientist and artists. Only a very small percentage will use iMac Pro for Final Cut Pro.
  • Reply 16 of 16
    JinTech said:
    Apple is too unreliable for a pro to invest his experience in their pro software, like FCP or Motion. You just don’t know if they’re gonna update it or kill it. Adobe is a more reliable company when it comes to creative software, they update their stuff often.

    I am no fan of Adobe. I think they still don’t understand the needs of a web designer/developer or have a clue in which direction the web is heading, but they’re reliable, and that is super important for a pro to invest his experience in their tools.
    They would not continually update it if they are going to kill it. Further more, they would not be making the iMac Pro if they wanted you to run just Adobe products.
    Yes. Upgrade. Especially wne they re-wriet to the level that professionals cannot work with it... just like they did moving to version 10 and it caused quite abit of issiues with professional features support. Adobe did not change that radically and that is why it is called "stable" even if it has issues.
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