Final Cut Pro & iMovie for Mac update preps for macOS dropping 32-bit support

Posted:
in Mac Software edited March 21
Apple on Thursday updated its two Mac video editing suites, Final Cut Pro and iMovie, with tools geared to ensure videos remain compatible as macOS drops all 32-bit app support.

Apple's Final Cut Pro


Final Cut 10.4.6 and iMovie 10.1.11 can detect potentially incompatible files and convert them to a supported format, according to Apple notes. Mojave will be the last macOS release with 32-bit compatibility, something the company announced at WWDC 2018 to give developers plenty of time.

Most developers and filmmakers have likely been in the 64-bit arena for years, considering the inherent performance limits of 32 bits. 32-bit apps can't take full advantage of multi-core processors, and can only access up to 4 gigabytes of RAM -- a serious barrier in an age of 4K and even 8K video.

Some bugs solved in Final Cut 10.4.6 include disappearing share destinations and workflow extension buttons, the Select Clip command picking the clip beneath the playhead, relinked media sporting black thumbnails, and missing frequency data in Hum Removal.

For both apps Apple is promising improved reliability when uploading to YouTube, where a good deal of modern video appears.

The updates should be free downloads to existing users through the Mac App Store. Final Cut Pro though is $299.99 new, and requires macOS 10.13.6 or later.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 11
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,141member
    My VMware VM of Sierra is all set up for my 32 bit apps.  Looking at you Fujitsu SnapScan!
    michelb76watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 11
    mdriftmeyermdriftmeyer Posts: 7,229member
    You forgot Motion was also updated.
    SpamSandwichcornchip
  • Reply 3 of 11
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,783member
    This transition is going to be painful for some. Lots of 32 bit apps still be around with no hope of being updated. Those with existing Macs can always stay on Mojave or earlier to avoid the issue but any new Macs after macOS 10.15 is released will be 64 bit only. Let’s face it, many Mac (and PC) users live inside an insulated bubble and don't know or care about this stuff until it bites them in the ass. Then they fly into a rage because they weren't personally contacted to warn them what was going to happen.
    edited March 21 chasmtyler82watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 11
    chasmchasm Posts: 1,266member
    lkrupp said:
    This transition is going to be painful for some. Lots of 32 bit apps still be around with no hope of being updated.
    When it becomes obvious that a Mac app you like hasn't been updated in forever, users should contact the developer (if possible) to ask about updating for 64-bit. At this point, though ... I think you can assume things that haven't been updated for 64-bit means they haven't been updated in several years, and you can presume abandonware.

    This shouldn't need to be written out, but apparently it does: at that point you need to start looking at supported, alternative software. Obviously you like this abandonware, but ... unless you're prepared to preserve that machine at Mojave and take it off the internet in a couple of years when security support is dropped, you're going to need to slowly but surely replace those 32-bit apps with 64-bit alternatives. This transition won't be "painful" for anyone but a tiny minority unless you decide to make it so by not seeking and supporting alternatives.

    You can check which apps are 32-bit by going to the Apple Menu -> About This Mac -> System Report -> Applications and then sort the list by the category "64-Bit Intel." Taking a look at my own system this way, the big standouts still on this 2012 (highly upgraded) MBP are my old Adobe CS3 suite, the outdated version of Audio Hijack Pro, the outdated version of Fission (both of which have since been replaced, but I kept the old ones around for a while), a equalizer called The Levelator, Mariner Write (which is surprising), MPEG Streamclip (awww), and VisualHub (awww), and a shedload of old games I haven't played in years but might want to again someday.

    Pixelmator and Luminar took over from my Photoshop needs years ago, and there's also Affinity as a nice option (if you don't want to spend $10/month on the latest Photoshop). Haven't had any need for the rest of the suite in years, but if I did I'd probably go with the Affinity options unless I got a job doing that stuff. I kept Audio Hijack Pro around for a very long time as a crutch to prevent me having to re-learn the new interface of Audio Hijack, I'll admit it, but I did eventually and found it to be great -- it just took me a while to get comfy with it. I should contact Marinersoft about my still-supported version of MW, and I was aware that MPEG Streamclip and Visual/AudialHub were long abandoned (but they are still very effective at what they do, even though I have alternatives that work fine -- so I'll miss them). At present, there doesn't seem to be any programs I'll need to re-buy or spend money on updates for when the new macOS comes out -- probably because I've religiously kept up with updates generally. Users who bought a program once in 2006 and never updated it are going to be paying handsomely for new updates, but again they very much brought that upon themselves.

    So, what am I left with? One program I actually rely heavily on (Levelator) and a bunch of old Mac games. None of that requires an internet connection, so I have the option of just retiring my 2012 MBP (augmented with SSDs) as an offline games machine -- and maybe find a modern alternative to Levelator (or just copy files over the network for Levelating and copy them back using AirDrop) -- for quite a few years yet. Or I could just give up the abandoned games, wait for the inevitable "anniversary update" editions of the best ones, and treat myself to a LONG overdue newer machine so I can move on with my life.

    Yeah, it's sad that some of these old-but-highly-functional 32-bit apps are going away, but that was the dev's choice not mine. I use my computer in 2019 vastly differently than I did 10 years ago, and if there's one thing I inherently understand about the computing world, it's that it is and always has been a huge rollercoaster that comes with ups, downs, and unexpected curves -- and that isn't going to change and you just roll with them for what is generally a ever-improving result.
    StrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 11
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,541member
    Part of the reason I started off with a completely fresh account on my new MacBook Pro for the first time in 15 years. Happy to get rid of the cruft and start fresh.
    chasmwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 11
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,541member
    You forgot Motion was also updated.
    And Compressor.
    minicoffeecornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 11
    chasmchasm Posts: 1,266member
    Part of the reason I started off with a completely fresh account on my new MacBook Pro for the first time in 15 years. Happy to get rid of the cruft and start fresh.
    That's actually a very good idea I may well enact when I get my next computer. This one has stuff on it from 20 years ago. Thanks!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 11
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,541member
    chasm said:
    Part of the reason I started off with a completely fresh account on my new MacBook Pro for the first time in 15 years. Happy to get rid of the cruft and start fresh.
    That's actually a very good idea I may well enact when I get my next computer. This one has stuff on it from 20 years ago. Thanks!
    Man you should've seen the stuff in my Application Support folder, and other places in ~/Library. Also dig around in Terminal sometime and look at how many invisible files are scattered all over the place. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 11
    The notes with the updates don't indicate which file types are affected. I realize it may be difficult to list every possible affected format, but mentioning some common ones would be welcome so I can plan ahead.

    I also understand that Apple's file-conversion approach is meant to eliminate the need for me to work out the format issue myself, but there are a couple black holes in the information provided that make me hesitate. When FCPX, Motion, or Compressor convert a file, what is the resulting format? Is it compatible with other software we may use, including that not made by Apple? How is the file converted? Does the algorithm prioritize speed over quality? How much degradation does the conversion impose? Am I better off using a third-party tool to convert files rather than letting the Apple software do it?

    For all I know it may be just fine and maybe even mostly a non-issue, but given how Apple added an "X" to "FCP" by making it a whole lot less "P", and the sting of all those files and sessions in Animation format that no longer work, I'm hesitant to risk my livelihood without more information. A single line in the notes that says "We're fixing your files for you" may be fine for a consumer product, but not for software that has "Pro" right in the title.



    EDIT: With some digging I managed to find Apple's document on the subject, though only thanks to someone else digging even harder and posting a link on his blog. The page is https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT209000. It says conversion is to ProRes, which is probably fine, though it's still light on details about specific format and conversion parameters. I'll probably use Compressor to convert files so I can control some of the variables rather than letting Motion or FCP do it automatically.
    edited March 22
  • Reply 10 of 11
    kruegdudekruegdude Posts: 282member
    MacPro said:
    My VMware VM of Sierra is all set up for my 32 bit apps.  Looking at you Fujitsu SnapScan!
    Fujitsu has new 64bit software. Something called Home, I think. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 11
    It is not about 32-bit applications, but about 32-bit data. Start reading carefully. And it also beats me why one needs to convert data (videos) instead supporting any format. I would appreciate not to touch my data and keep them in original format? What's difficult about it? It is not about not being able to take advantage of multicore - that BS you can sell to non-technology people (decoding is not issue). You just want easy way to have support only for 64-bit apps and data. Sure addressing space has advantage, but that does not mean old contect must be converted. Nobody cares abot 4K if original material has never been 4K at the time it was created and it will never be 4K quality after conversion (you cannot make up for missing information).
    cornchip
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