In all the speculation about FCPX, nobody has mentioned about third party audio plugins. There is the rumour of Soundtrack Pro being incorporated, but what about being able to install specialist plugins that can do tasks like precision compressing or transient noise reduction? What tools could be available?

Final Cut Pro has lacked some professional audio features for a while now. The compressor for example isn't great and the GUI is hardly intuitive, it has served us well though over seven years of outputting broadcast productions. We have seen how roundtripping via Soundtrack Pro can remove background noise, but doing that for every clip is a pain and we don't want to get to picture lock just yet either.

So one of our hopes for FCPX is the ability to install third party audio plugins that do specific tasks well. We came across this interview of Marie Ebbing & Jonathon Stevens using reNOVAtor by Algorithmix and were blown away by how easy it was to remove incidental background noise from audio tracks. We didn't know until today that there are two types of background noise: broadband such as hiss, hum e.t.c and transient such as coughs, car horns and squeaky chairs!


reNOVAtor is pretty expensive at over €2000 so we can't see it being ported for FCPX, but a 'lite' $99 version would sell like hot cakes.

When we first started to experiment with Ableton we were more than impressed with its compressor. The GUI just seemed to make sense instantly. A lot easier to visualise what is going on with a display like that as opposed to FCP's antiquated sliders. Although Ableton is a music making and DJ mixing tool, this video should give you an insight into how audio processing GUI's should be done. BTW do not download the Ableton trial if you plan on getting anything done this weekend!

After a day of using the compressor in Ableton, it almost makes us cry having to go back to that horrid grey Final Cut Pro sliderfest.

vintagewarmerFCP7 doesn't really support custom GUI's. There are companies out there who do use custom graphic elements like colour sliders in the viewer window, but these have issues when trying to save the parameters. So please could we have custom GUI's supported for all plugins, audio and video. If FCPX hasn't got some of these tools as standard then we really hope that the program gets opened up to audio developers, that way we just might see some tools like the multi-band compressor VintageWarmer appearing on the platform. Making your voiceovers sound like they've been processed by an old piece of outboard valve (tube) kit would be terrific.

We will see what FCPX will bring in the next month, fingers crossed.

Written by
Top BloggerThought Leader

I am the Editor-in-Chief of FCP.co and have run the website since its inception ten years ago.

I have also worked as a broadcast and corporate editor for over 30 years, starting on one inch tape, working through many formats, right up to today's NLEs.

Under the name Idustrial Revolution, I have written and sold plugins for Final Cut Pro for 13 years.

I was made a Freeman of Lichfield through The Worshipful Company of Smiths (established 1601). Though I haven't yet tried to herd a flock of sheep through the city centre!

Current Editing

great house giveaway 2020

2020 has been busy, the beginning of the year was finishing off a new property series (cut on FCP) for Channel 4 called The Great House Giveaway. I also designed and built the majority of the graphics as Motion templates. It has been a great success and the shows grabbed more viewers in the 4pm weekday slot than any previous strand. It has been recommissioned by C4 for 60 episodes, including prime-time versions and five themed programmes. The shows have also been nominated for a 2021 BAFTA.

Tour de france 2020
Although both were postponed to later in the year, I worked again on ITV's coverage of the Tour de France and La Vuelta. 2020 was my 25th year of editing the TdF and my 20th year as lead editor. The Tour was the first broadcast show to adopt FCPX working for multiple editors on shared storage.


BBC snooker the crucible

BBC's Snooker has played a big part in my life, I've been editing tournament coverage since 1997. I'm proud to be part of a very creative team that has pioneered many new ideas and workflows that are now industry standard in sports' production. This is currently an Adobe Premiere edit.

amazon kindle BF

Covid cancelled some of the regular corporate events that I edit such as trade shows & events. I was lucky however to edit, from home, on projects for Amazon Kindle, Amazon Black Friday, Mastercard and very proud to have helped local charitable trust Kendall & Wall secure lottery funding.

As for software, my weapon of choice is Final Cut Pro and Motion, but I also have a good knowledge and broadcast credits with Adobe Premiere Pro, MOGRT design and Photoshop.

Plugin Design & Development

I'm the creative force behind Idustrial Revolution, one of the oldest Final Cut Pro plugin developers. It hosts a range of commercial and free plugins on the site. One free plugin was downloaded over a thousand times within 24 hours of release.

I also take on custom work, whether it is adapting an existing plugin for a special use or designing new plugins for clients from scratch. Having a good knowledge of editing allows me to build-in flexibility and more importantly, usability.


Now in its 10th year and 4th redesign, running FCP.co has given me knowledge on how to run a large CMS- you are currently reading my bio from the database! Although it sounds corny, I am pretty well up on social media trends & techniques, especially in the video sector. The recent Covid restrictions has enabled live FCP.co shows online. This involves managing a Zoom Webinar through Restream.io to YouTube and Facebook. 

The Future

I'm always open to new ideas and opportunities, so please get in touch at editor (at) fcp.co. I've judged film competitions, presented workflow techniques to international audiences and come up with ideas for TV shows and software programs!


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