We nearly fell off our Aerons when we saw the FCPX GUI poster frame to this quick tutorial. We have wanted decent PPM meters in FCP ever since we owned our first copy. There's good news and bad news though.
The only bad news is that these don't actually run within FCPX, you are going to have to download two extra pieces of software that enable you to finally get some proper level monitoring.
PPM's are the standard way of measuring broadcast audio in the UK, we think we've got those numbers permanently burnt into our retinas by now. This Wikipedia article on PPMs gives some great geek information on the meters and variants across the world. If you've never seen one before, each number is 4 decibels apart, the needles have a very fast attack time, but a lot slower decay so you can spot those audio spikes. Rule number one about PPM's is don't go over 6.
We have seen this method of metering done before with FCP7, but Propose PR are the first people we've seen getting the meters to run with FCPX. They are not within the GUI, the frame above shows the PPM meter sitting on top of FCPX. Apple please take note as incorporating these would make for a superb update!
You'll need two bits of software to get things running, Soundflower a free app that lets audio pass from one application to another.
And PPMulator, the $99 metering app that also has a demo to download.
We don't know if the two apps will put any significant overhead on the machine or I/O cards that might affect playback as we haven't tried them out yet. We'll let Propose PR take it from here..