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Apple has released updates to Final Cut Pro X to version 10.2, Motion to version 5.2 and Compressor to version 4.2.  A lot of new eye-candy, some much needed new features and some large speed gains. Their 15th update to FCPX is still free and available for download now.

Apple update Final Cut Pro X to 10.2, Motion to 5.2 and Compressor to 4.2


Apple have surprised us again by releasing updates to the three professional video applications on the first day of NAB 2015. All the updates are free, which is a huge feature increase from when FCPX was first released.

Yes, the icons have had a makeover, looking a bit flatter than before!

We will look at the applications one by one, picking out the new main features, starting with FCPX. Don't forget to backup before you install!

(Please not all images are Digimarked)

Final Cut Pro X 10.2

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3D Titles
Fully featured 3D titles.Control 3D text parameters directly in FCPX. You can change materials, lighting and edges all in the inspector. Open up effects in Motion to customise further. Many cinematic templates provided. 2D titles can be converted into 3D with one click. This would explain the price cuts of similar 3D 3rd party plugins!


Smart Collections
Smart Collections at the Library level. 5 supplied as a start such as projects and stills, but you can delete them and make your own. 


Draw Mask
You can now draw a mask with linear, bezier or B Splines smoothing. The mask can have unlimited control points and the the points can be animated over time. The masks can be used on any built-in effect or third party product.

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Color Correction is now an Effect.
Reorder the correction in the inspector to make sure the correct sequence of operation (like applying a broadcast safe filter) You can also drag & drop and save a multilayer effect as a preset.


New Scope Display Options
Up to 4 Video Scopes on the screen at once. Graders rejoice at the choice from the pull-down menu.

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New Import Window
Now consolidated onto one page. The sidebar means you don't have to go to a second page to access the import preferences.

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Improved Processing of Waveforms
Caching of waveforms to improve performance over a network. (No word on if this will fix the growing file problem)


New XML Version 1.5
Also an option to export previous XML versions to improve third party compatibility.


Faster RED Workflow
Red Raw GPU-accelerated playback, rendering, and transcoding—including support for dual GPUs on Mac Pro. FCPX now reads the anamorphic flag for the correct widescreen display. Expect a 3.2x improvement on render times and a 2.4x improvement on optimisation to ProRes than 10.1.4. The latest RED plugin needs it be installed.


Send to Compressor
Now uses GPU Rendering. Expect up to a 3.3x increase when encoding ProRes 422. Support for dual GPUs on the MacPro and integrated graphics cards on laptops.


More Video Formats Supported
Now no need to install Sony's plugin for XAVC and XDCAM. Panasonic AVC-Ultra, Sony XAVC S, and JVC H.264 Long GOP files now supported. We believe XAVC L to be supported, but only when importing from a camera card or archive. This is great news for Sony FS7 owners. (Yes you Philip!)

 Other Improvements, Features 7 Bug Fixes

  • Enhanced Optical Flow with new algorithms and more format compatibility.
  • Instantly display the alpha channel for any effect mask
  • Improved keyframing with better motion smoothing
  • CABAC entropy mode for multi-pass encoding
  • Transform controls work correctly with photos in a secondary storyline
  • Resizable Filter window for searching
  • Slo-mo video clips from iPhone appear in the Browser with a badge
  • Full-screen playback does not automatically superimpose transport controls
  • Improved performance when skimming Long GOP video including AVCHD
  • Exporting a Master File using i-Frame codecs like ProRes can play in QuickTime Player before the export completes
  • Support for XAVC S video recorded at 120 fps and 240 fps
  • MXF-wrapped AVC-Intra and Uncompressed files export faster


Final Cut Pro X is $299.99 on the Mac App Store and requires Yosemite 10.10.2. Free update for current users.



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3D Titles  
Build 3D titles from scratch with easy-to-use templates, or open any existing title from Final Cut Pro. Customize the look of your 3D text with organic and artificial materials, or create your own materials that you can save and use later.

You can also take advantage of powerful surface-shading options in Motion, including texture maps, diffuse and specular reflection, and bump mapping. Cast shadows from any 3D title onto itself and other objects in a 3D scene, or add multiple lights, cameras, and tracking shots to create epic designs.

Only text can be in 3D, shapes are not supported. This does offer quite a bit of flexibility, the Jurassic World logo is an example.

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Twelve New Generators
Customisable patterned backgrounds 


Support for More Video Formats
Work natively with Panasonic AVC-Ultra, Sony XAVC S, and JVC H.264 Long GOP files.

Other Improvements, Features & Bug Fixes

  • Improved keyframing, including copy and paste in the Timeline
  • Improved mask and shape creation plus conversion to bezier shape for more control
  • Background Share monitoring from within Motion
  • Improved performance on Intel-based GPUs
  • Better performance of FxPlug plug-ins and built-in effects that use multiple frames like Echo and Trails
  • Improved stability when loading projects with missing filters or fonts
  • Choosing a smooth option on an already smooth point no longer changes the curve
  • Checkbox parameters display in the curve editor
  • Double-clicking to add a new keyframe in the Curve Editor no longer changes interpolation of subsequent keyframes
  • The Keyframe Editor vertical scroll bar displays the entire graph
  • Keyframe Editor time scale is consistent

Motion 5.2 is $49.99 on the Mac App Store and requires Yosemite 10.10.2. Free update for current users.



iTunes Store Package 

Compressor makes it simple to create an iTunes Store Package for submission to the iTunes Store. Easily add your movie, trailer, closed captions, and subtitles to your iTunes Store Package. You can even identify language tracks and regions and add other required metadata right in Compressor.

Once you’ve created your package, send it to an Apple-certified iTunes delivery partner for fast delivery to the iTunes Store.

The Charles Lloyd documentary is the first film on the iTunes Store to have been delivered using the Compressor 4.2. It's the fastest way to get your film on the store. Don't get excited however, this is not a one click publish to iTunes and make money scenario, you still have to go through an approved delivery partner such as ZOO Digital. 

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Preview Closed Captions and Subtitles
View closed captions and subtitles in real time, right in the Preview window. Simply click the CC button to enable text overlays. You can even customize the look of your text in the Accessibility pane within OS X System Preferences.


Hardware-Accelerated, Multipass H.264 Encoding
Export using high-quality, multipass H.264 encoding at speeds nearly 3x faster than before on supported hardware.


Other New features


  • Zoom in the Preview window to watch content with true pixel accuracy
  • Automatic bit-rate calculation for MPEG-4 and H.264 QuickTime movie settings
  • Channels can be assigned to QuickTime audio tracks prior to processing
  • Optional matrix stereo down-mix when processing surround sound for QuickTime output
  • CABAC entropy mode for multipass encoding
  • Jobs submitted via Droplet now appear in the Active and Completed tabs
  • Improved stability when using Apple AES3 Audio format with ProRes 422 HQ


Compressor 4.2 is $49.99 on the Mac App Store and requires Yosemite 10.10.2. Free update for current users.


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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