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Adding music to projects with the Sonicfire Pro Plugin for Final Cut Pro X

smart sound plugin fcpx

We have covered many plugins for visual content, but not many for audio, so good to see that SmartSound has just released a Sonicfire Pro Plugin for FCPX. Is this the way to choose and licence music for your productions?

We were quite excited when we saw this news flash up on Facebook pages that we subscribe to. Having a built-in commercial music library available with a few clicks sounds like a great idea. (sorry!) It's a bit more complicated than that however.

SmartSound has released a $49.95 FCPX plugin that acts as a generator place holder within a project that's the link to the Sonicfire Pro app. The idea is that you can browse music, select the genre and length and then the selected track will be placed back into the timeline with a Replace or Add to Audition command.

The plus side? It's a quick way to find music without having to go online to different music publisher's websites. You can change the length of the track, the mood, the tempo and the musical arrangement with a couple of clicks. This could be really useful for event videographers who will want to vary background music according to what is happening onscreen. Or, make the music follow the pictures instead of cutting the pictures to the music.

The downside? First of all, why do we have to purchase the plugin? For the plugin to work, you have to already have purchased the Sonicfire Pro application which retails at $99. SmartSound would get more customers if they based the plugin and application on the Freemium model. Get people to install the product and then tempt them into buying the music by download or removing an audible watermark.

Secondly, promoting a product is fine, but we are in a very visual industry, people want to watch a demo of the app in action, not just read about it! You need to have a clear marketing message as even we are confused about the way Sonicfire works. Does it come with free tracks? Can you download more free music? How much is extra music? Do you have to be connected to the internet at all times? 

A lot of questions to be answered before we would get our credit cards out, but maybe the plugin is aimed at existing Sonicfire Pro users who will find the plugin cuts out a lot of steps when choosing music. Good or bad, it's always good to see the FCPX ecosystem growing.

If you've been using Sonicfire Pro with or without the plugin, we would love to hear from you in the comments below.

We found a few videos from Larry Jordan that demo Sonicfire Pro 5, they use FCP7, but they give you an idea of what the application can do. 




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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

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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. 

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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.


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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.

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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.

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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. 

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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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