Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Final Cut Pro X Is A Huge Failure

In an article for Gizmodo, Matt Toder lists all kinds of things he thinks Final Cut Pro X should have added to be useful to the pro-editor: ability to save your export settings; shared bins; a reliable shared media solution; or a find bin command. But then he concludes that none of those features exist because they weren't shown:
If this were truly a device for professional editors, those improvements would have been in FCPX, and Steinauer would have made a point of mentioning them considering the room he was playing to. But he didn't
With that piece of sleuthing done, he goes on to complain about the removal of the Source Monitor:
This represents a gigantic change in the way non-linear editing occurs, a nearly unfathomable one. Since non-linear editing was invented, the mainstays have been the source monitor, the record monitor, the browser and the timeline. To take one of these away means that non-linear editing has to be rethought entirely
and proves that Final Cut Pro X isn't catering to the professional, because it doesn't work the way that professionals are used to working:
... that means giving them the flexibility to work however they please, using the techniques they've developed over years of working in tough conditions.
Now this missive against change wouldn't be so curious if it had appeared on a site other than Gizmodo. Because just a few months ago, Gizmodo completely re-engineered itself, changing the design to an emphasis on feature stories and images, and away from the reverse-chronological blog format.

There was quite a backlash from some readers, but Gawker - the publisher - have stuck with the new design. Here was a company saying to it's users "times are changing, and we're changing with it."

Seriously, what was Gizmodo thinking? I used to be able to go in and scan through the headlines of their news stories quickly, but now they have this ONE big story that gets in the way of things. And we're supposed to scan down a small list of other stories that are terse and don't really tell you what they are about. How's a power reader supposed to work with that?

But I digress.

Through the years, how many people in creative fields have been steamrollered by technology changes they first dismissed?
  • How many type-setters and graphic designers looked at PageMaker and said "that's all very good, but it's not as efficient and high-quality as what we can do with..."
  • How many cinematographers said they'd never shoot digitally?
  • How many...
You get the idea.

And who are these unhappy pro-editors? How do they relate to the majority of users? If Apple were to let Avid have the entire feature film market, they could still laugh all the way to the bank.

Before we write off this entire market segment, let's not forget, we still don't really know how the damn program works! We're guessing how efficient and easy it will be to use based on a 20 minute demo!

This is getting a little silly.

But before anyone decides to switch editing environments, or write nasty letters to The New York Times, we should at least wait until people have actually spent time using the thing!

And in the mean time, I'm really hoping that an inflammatory title on this article will drive up readership; it seems to work for others.

GizmodoWhy Final Cut Pro X Is Sending Me Back to Avid
The AtlanticLong Live Blogs: As Readers Flee, Gawker Backtracks on Big Redesign

To balance things up a bit, Mark Reschke at Three Guys and a Podcast takes a decidedly more optimistic view:
If the pro user's ego can get past the fact they've actually gained tools from iMovie, while embracing some out-of-the-box thinking, Final Cut Pro X is going to be a boon for Apple's base while expanding into the new realm of pro-sumer photography, at a price point that makes it work for everyone.
t-gaap.comApple News, Analysis and Podcasts

At this point, I think all the views have been exhausted. Until Apple announces something new, I'm going to try really hard not to keep rehashing things!

1 comment:

Russ Fairley Productions said...

I'm enjoying PP CS5.5, and AVID just dropped to $995. Things aren't so bad for small potatoes guys like me. :)