Apple have published a document with a lot of help links that are designed to troubleshoot the basic problems you might get with FCPX. One we would definitely bookmark.

Just published, this Apple Knowledge Base document details 10 steps to possible solutions for problems editors might have with Final Cut Pro X. Some points are obvious, some not so obvious, but it's good to have all the help links in one place. Item 9 deals with trashing your preferences on Snow Leopard & Lion, we have highlighted the sections in yellow.

We also hope they don't mind us republishing the article here on FCP.co.


Final Cut Pro X: Troubleshooting basics

Products Affected

Final Cut Pro X


If Final·Cut Pro X·isn't performing as expected, try these basic troubleshooting steps to attempt to isolate and resolve the issue. Please note that these steps are not intended to address a specific issue and are not comprehensive.


Important note: First back up events, projects, and Final·Cut Pro X
Prior to performing steps in this article, ensure that you have a current backup of your events, projects, and of Final·Cut Pro X.·For more information see:


1. Review Final·Cut Pro X documentation

In order to verify that Final·Cut Pro X is working as expected, it's always a good idea to review the documentation to ensure that you clearly understand the expected behavior of what you're trying to do in Final Cut Pro X. Following this step thoroughly could save a lot of time by eliminating perceived issues.

For information on how to access Final·Cut Pro X Help see·Final Cut Pro X, Motion 5, Compressor 4: User manuals.

2. Verify that your computer meets the system requirements for Final Cut Pro X

See·Final Cut Pro X - Technical Specifications.

Ensure that your computer meets the OpenCL-capable graphics card or Intel HD Graphics 3000 or later system requirement.·For more information see:

3. Ensure Final Cut Pro X is up to date

Note:·If you are actively working on a project, avoid updating or upgrading Final·Cut Pro X until you are finished with the project. Either complete the project in the version of Final Cut Pro X you are currently working in, or ensure that you have a current backup of your events, projects, and Final·Cut Pro X. This is so you can revert to the previous state that your data and the application were in if updating or upgrading to the latest version of Final Cut Pro X·does not address your issue.·For more information see:

4. Verify that the ProApps QuickTime Codecs are installed

For more information see·Final Cut Pro X, Motion 5, Compressor 4: Run Software Update after installation to install Pro Apps QuickTime codecs.

5. Make sure you're using a media format or device supported for use with Final Cut Pro X

For more information see:

6. Check third-party compatibility

If you use any third-party software (plug-ins, tools, or content) with Final Cut Pro X, contact the manufacturer to ensure that the version of third-party software you have installed is compatible with the version of Final·Cut Pro X you're using.

7. Hide Events and Projects

You can isolate issues with events and projects by hiding your events and projects and then un-hiding a project or event. Do this one at a time until you are able to reproduce the issue and identify an affected event or project.·For detailed information on hiding events and projects see·Final Cut Pro X: Hiding events and projects.

8. Test with known-good media

Known-good media is media that is known to consistently work without issues. This can be a media file from a previous project that you confidently know works as expected. Alternately, you could add a generator and an audio file to a new Final·Cut Pro X project (or a new Motion project) and export media using an Apple ProRes codec, like Apple ProRes 422, to create a known-good media file for troubleshooting.

Using known-good media can help you isolate an issue down to the media you're attempting to work with. If known-good media works as expected in Final Cut Pro X but other media you've imported into Final Cut Pro X does not, there may be an issue with the imported media. You may need to acquire it again from the original source, or it may be media that is not supported for use in Final Cut Pro X. For more information see·Final Cut Pro X Help: Supported media formats.

9. Reset Final Cut Pro X preferences

Important note before you begin:
Before resetting user preferences, be sure to first review your Final·Cut·Pro X preferences as they are currently configured, and note any specific settings you've chosen. When resetting the Final·Cut·Pro X preferences, your editing, playback, and import preferences will be returned to default settings the next time you open Final·Cut Pro X. For example, in your Import preferences you may have deselected the "Copy files to Final Cut Events folder" checkbox for a specific reason. If you reset the preferences and relaunch Final·Cut Pro X, this check box will be enabled by default and may not be the setting you prefer for your workflow.

These articles are helpful for understanding the different preferences:

Upon opening Final·Cut Pro X after you've reset the preferences to default, you can then set your preferences as they were configured previously. Do this before proceeding with tasks in Final·Cut·Pro·X.

How to reset the Final Cut Pro X Preferences:
Follow the steps below for the version of Mac OS X that you are using.


OS X 10.7 Lion

In the Finder, hold down the Option key and choose Library from the Go menu.
In the Library folder that opens, move the following files to the Desktop:



Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard

In Finder, choose Home from the Go menu.

In the Home folder that opens, open the Preferences folder. Move the following file to the Desktop:


After resetting preferences, perform the same steps that caused the issue to occur originally. If the issue no longer occurs, move the preference files you moved to the desktop to the Trash. Empty the Trash to delete them from the system.

10. Remove and reinstall Final·Cut Pro X

For instructions on removing and reinstalling Final·Cut Pro·X see·Final Cut Pro X: How to remove and reinstall Final Cut Pro X.


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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