Jump to content


Photo

How long would it take to learn Final Cut Pro?


  • Please log in to reply
8 replies to this topic

#1 Lamont Robinson

Lamont Robinson

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 6 posts
  • Other

Posted 14 August 2011 - 05:48 PM

I've directed a film, but I have NO EXPERIENCE with Moviemaker, FCP, or ANY type of editing software. With that being said, if I buy a Mac, how long should it take me to learn FCP well enough to edit my own films?
  • 0

#2 Andrew Rawson

Andrew Rawson
  • Sustaining Members
  • 57 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 14 August 2011 - 07:17 PM

Just jump right in and start playing with it, FCP is very intuitive. I think one of the most helpful things for me was going to Lynda.com,(a great site to learn all kinds of software) pay $25 for a month and go through their tutorials. I taught myself FCP and Color using Lynda.com, there are some free tutorials as well in each subject to get you started and see if it's something you will be interested in.
I am by no means fast or efficient like my professional editor friends but I can accomplish what I need to and it's very satisfying.
Good Luck!
Andy
  • 0

#3 Hal Smith

Hal Smith
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2280 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • OKC area

Posted 14 August 2011 - 10:56 PM

FCP-7 has been discontinued and was instantly obsoleted by Apple. The replacement, FCP-X is a completely new animal, projects edited in FCP-7 are not compatible with FCP-X.

The consensus about FCP-X in the professional editing community is that Apple should have named it iMovie-Pro. The post houses running FCP-7 are tearing their hair out as to what to do now that their editing suites cannot be upgraded. I read that Apple authorized a few more copies of FCP-7 be sold to post houses needing additional seats but there's no future for it.

Frankly, I advise looking into Avid, the current version is Media Composer 5.5. It's a bitch to learn but is an industry standard. Avid requires a pretty stout workstation class computer to achieve its full potential but Avid capable ex-corporate lease workstations show up on eBay for as little as $500-750. Ex-lease HP workstations show up in that price range and usually still have some warranty left so you're covered if there's a problem with it.

It is possible to build a good computer for Avid on the cheap if you're good with computer hardware. I'm an engineer familiar with high end computers from my business business building and fixing radio stations. I bought an as-is HP8400 workstation off eBay for $400 that was still in HP warranty for six months more. I fixed some cosmetic damage, bought a pair of HP branded quad core Xeon processors and 8GB more of HP memory off eBay, then had HP come out and fix a couple of "issues".

Warning! For HP to honor the warranty, any hardware changes you make must be HP branded parts that were on the option list when the computer was new. For instance: If you upgrade the video card with an Nvidia card newer than the computer (like I did), and need warranty work, you must put the original card back in the computer if you need HP support. I ran into that with my XW8400 and the HP tech nicely told me about that rule in advance. It turned out my memory problem was a motherboard issue...and I got a brand new motherboard...for free! HP really takes care of their workstation class computer users.

If you're a student, Avid offers some great discounts. If you do buy Avid and they come out with a newer version within less than a year or so they've always offered a good upgrade deal to move you into that newer version. I suspect this is because they want to simplify their support requirements. I've taken all the upgrade offers all the way back to when I had XPress DV in a student version. When MC3.5 came out they offered me a bargain upgrade that included upgrading me to the standard commercial version. That gave me full commercial support for three months after I upgraded to ease me over any glitches.

I would recommend jumping on Avid right away. With FCP-7 pros starting to jump ship for Avid they'll have less low price competition and may be tempted to start upping their prices.

Edited by Hal Smith, 15 August 2011 - 08:53 AM.

  • 0

#4 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 6170 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 15 August 2011 - 07:43 AM

I belive the AVID student version for now is $295 with 4 yrs of upgrades. As Hal says, I'd recommend looking to Avid as well. I have FCP 6 and MC3.5 on my macbook pro as they suite my needs and I don't feel like upgrading yet.. I am no editor. But, I did play around with MC 5.5 recently on trial and I was really impressed with the "AMA," on AVID.. which is like "Log and transferr" from FCP... only no transcoding at all. Only thing I'd say is that if you go Avid, I'd recommend going AVID on a PC; as odd as that sounds. While MC can run on a Mac, if memory serves, there are a few extras from Avid missing on the mac side.
  • 0

#5 Chris Millar

Chris Millar
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1586 posts
  • Other

Posted 16 August 2011 - 05:00 AM

Don't worry Lamont - someone will be along to answer your question shortly ...

Posted Image
  • 0

#6 Brian Drysdale

Brian Drysdale
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4013 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 16 August 2011 - 08:05 AM

Don't worry Lamont - someone will be along to answer your question shortly ...

Posted Image


I suspect you can learn how to use the program quite quickly, however, it could take a lot longer to learn how to become an editor.
  • 0

#7 Hal Smith

Hal Smith
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2280 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • OKC area

Posted 16 August 2011 - 08:21 AM

Don't worry Lamont - someone will be along to answer your question shortly ...

Posted Image


Why learn a program that, in it's new version is intended for an amateur market? Worse yet, its old version is now an orphan with no support.

Avid by no means is my favorite company but they are dedicated to supporting professionals, not kids making iPhone movies.
  • 0

#8 Brian Rose

Brian Rose
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 884 posts
  • Student
  • Kansas City area

Posted 16 August 2011 - 11:25 AM

Why learn a program that, in it's new version is intended for an amateur market? Worse yet, its old version is now an orphan with no support.

Avid by no means is my favorite company but they are dedicated to supporting professionals, not kids making iPhone movies.


I would also look into Premiere, as they stand to benefit from the FCPX debacle as well. Obviously there is a lot of hemming and hawing from all around over FCP versus Premiere, Mac versus PC, but speaking as one who is seasoned on both, both have strengths and weaknesses. Still, I use Premiere for my personal work, and it's the first editing program I cut my teeth on, back when I was starting in the early 00s a high schooler.

If you can, try them all out, and see what works best for you personally, fits well within your budget, and also fits with your overall workflow...like are you anticipating shuttling projects back and forth for colour correction or anything? Might be handy to know that workflow, what your collaborators use, so you can figure out how it will all go smoothly.

Good luck! Fcuk FCP X
  • 0

#9 Chris Burke

Chris Burke
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1361 posts
  • Boston, MA

Posted 24 August 2011 - 07:13 PM

Not that it will ever amount to anything but, I did a search for Adobe Premiere on Linux, and found a couple of threads where Adobe employees on the thread asked for and received loads of feedback for and about such an endeavor. I realize that it is very much a long shot, but said employees have gone on to say that they got way more response than expected, all positive. They continued on and said that a linux(probably Ubuntu or Debian) version is being "researched". If Adobe made at least Premiere and After Effect native for linux, it could really change things up. Let's face it Mac is getting out of the pro market, or have they already left. The spooky and sad harbinger of that is Steve Job's announcement today. Things are changing. Adobe could step to the plate or Avid could beat them.
  • 0


Cinelicious

Paralinx LLC

Aerial Filmworks

Cadrage Directors Viewfinder

K5600 Lighting

The Slider

Rig Wheels Passport

Glidecam

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Ritter Battery

Abel Cine

Zylight

Visual Products

NIBL

rebotnix Technologies

CineTape

Pro 8mm

Robert Starling

CineLab

Sound and Picture

NIBL

Zylight

Robert Starling

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Pro 8mm

Aerial Filmworks

K5600 Lighting

The Slider

Glidecam

CineTape

Cinelicious

CineLab

Paralinx LLC

Cadrage Directors Viewfinder

rebotnix Technologies

Ritter Battery

Rig Wheels Passport

Sound and Picture

Visual Products

Abel Cine