Apple updates Final Cut Pro to 10.5 and drops the X

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Apple has updated Final Cut Pro to version 10.5 and dropped the X from the name. We have no idea why Apple has decided to get rid of the X given this is version 10.5 and not 11.

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This is not any kind of huge update to Final Cut Pro, however, it does add improved performance and efficiency when using Mac computers with Apple Silicon. Final Cut Pro also gains new features that take advantage of the ‌Apple Silicon‌ Neural Engine.

So what is new?

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  • Improved performance and efficiency on Mac computers with Apple silicon
  • Accelerated machine learning analysis for Smart Conform using the Apple Neural Engine on Mac computers with Apple silicon
  • Option to create a copy of your library and automatically transcode media to ProRes Proxy or H.264 at various resolutions
  • New Social Media Tools
  • Export HLG high-dynamic-range projects with Dolby Vision 8.4 metadata for optimized playback on Apple devices.
  • Fixes an issue in which LUTs were not available in optimized or proxy clips.
  • Improves the appearance of HDR thumbnails in the browser and timeline.
  • Improves reliability when previewing built-in sound effects in the browser.
  • Fixes an issue in which audio waveforms would not update in the inspector after adding a filter or making a volume change.
  • Fixes an issue in which chapter markers were not available when sharing.
  • Improves reliability when creating proxy media from non-square pixel interlaced clips.
  • Improves stability when applying stabilization and color balance during import.
  • Fixes an issue in which audio sync could drift when retiming clips.
  • Improves reliability with Social Media content positioning when using Smart Conform to switch between vertical and horizontal frame sizes.
  • Improves reliability when using onscreen Crop controls in the viewer.
  • Fixes an issue in which copying stills between libraries would result in duplicate files.
  • Includes built-in support for Avid DNxHR and Avid DNxHD decoding and playback.

Just how much better Final Cut Pro’s performance will be when running it on a new Apple Silicon laptop will be interesting to see.

Proxy Library

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To help maximize portability and performance you can now create proxy copies of your media (as low as 1/8 size) in ProRes Proxy or H.264. The latest proxy engine allows you to create a proxy-only copy of your library to share locally or via the cloud and displays original media if proxies aren’t available. Third-party tools such as review and approval app frame.io can also generate and deliver proxies to a Final Cut Pro library.

Social Media Tools

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Video clips on social media platforms and websites often are shown in a variety of aspect ratio, such as square or vertical, for playback in an app or on the web. For a lot of us, this now means we need to also create multiple versions of a project in different aspect ratios.

With Final Cut Pro, you can now repurpose projects that have standard horizontal aspect ratios, such as those for film or TV, to create deliverables in all shapes and sizes, including square or vertical.

An illustration showing different aspect ratios on a smartphone screen, including a horizontal project with a 16:9 aspect ratio, a square project with a 1:1 aspect ratio, a vertical project with a 4:5 aspect ratio, and a vertical project with a  9:16 aspect ratio

In the past, reframing each clip in a project for a new aspect ratio could be a tedious process. Final Cut Pro now speeds up this process with the Smart Conform feature, which analyzes the content of each clip for faces or other areas of visual interest and automatically reframes clips that have a different aspect ratio from the project aspect ratio. You can use Smart Conform to quickly create a square or vertical version of a horizontal or widescreen project, and then make manual framing adjustments later.

  1. In Final Cut Pro, open an existing horizontal project.
  2. Select the project in the browser, and do one of the following:
    • Choose Edit > Duplicate Project As.
    • Control-click the project in the browser, and choose Duplicate Project As.
  3. In the window that appears, enter a project name and specify the settings for the duplicate project. (Choose Vertical or Square from the Video Format pop-up menu.)When you change the aspect ratio, the Smart Conform checkbox appears.
  4. To have Final Cut Pro analyze clips in the project and automatically reframe the clips whose aspect ratio differs from the project aspect ratio, select the Smart Conform checkbox.See Adjust framing with Smart Conform in Final Cut Pro.
  5. Click OK.Final Cut Pro creates the new project.If you selected Smart Conform, Final Cut Pro enables overscan view for reframed clips, revealing areas of a clip that extend beyond the edge of the viewer. You can make further reframing adjustments manually using the Transform effect. See Resize, move, and rotate clips in Final Cut Pro.

You can add a custom overlay as an onscreen guide when placing text and graphics in the frame. Custom overlays are similar to title-safe and action-safe overlays, except that they can be customized to the needs of your project. This makes them useful for the various vertical and square aspect ratios common in social media. See Show overlays in the Final Cut Pro viewer.

Logic Pro X Update

Apple has also updated Logic Pro X to version 10.6. Here is what’s new:

  • Improved performance and efficiency on Mac computers with Apple silicon
  • Adds the ability to control Step Sequencer using Logic Remote on your iPad or iPhone to create beats, bass lines, and melodic parts
  • Supports all Novation Launchpad controllers
  • Stability and performance improvements
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Were you expecting more from this update? Let us know in the comments section below.

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