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Ben Balser launches set of FCPX Managing Media tutorials


You might be familiar with Ben already as he is a regular contributor to our popular Final Cut Pro X forum right here on FCP.co. He's launched a new tutorial series on managing media for FCPX.

As more time elapses from the launch of Final Cut Pro X back in June, more print and video tutorials are appearing on the market. Ben's new set of tutorials are called 'Managing Media' and can be downloaded from the MacProVideo website for $19.50 or for a $25.00 a month subscription you'll get wide access to 280 tutorials on the site. A subscription will also include access to Michael Wohl's set of FCPX tutorials.

Ben Balser is a certified Final Cut Trainer, so he knows his stuff and looking at the three free preview extracts from the course, he presents in a clear and informative way.

We found Ben's comments interesting in a recent interview when he was asked about his thoughts on FCPX and the recent update.

"I think it’s a fantastic update. It solidifies that Apple is very committed to the pro market. Everything this update brought to the table is of absolutely no use to what we’d typically consider the "iMovie user". So, anybody who calls it "iMovie Pro" really needs to sit down and learn it. I mean, it’s a fantastic application. In the Final Cut user group I run here I’ve heard people say it’s not a version 1, it’s a version 10. But that’s not how Apple works. This is version 1, just like from OS 9 to OS X, where OS X was version 1 of a completely new system. But version 1 of anything always misses features, has growing pains and a few bugs. This isn’t any different.

What is different is FCP X treats digital media like digital media and not like celluloid negatives we have to cut and glue together. This is a paradigm shift I’m more than happy someone finally did. My biggest gripe has been, when teaching FCP, that we’re following procedures that are followed by a negative cutter on celluloid film, but we’re·not cutting on celluloid film. Why does every project have to start at one hour? That was from the days of celluloid film edit decision lists [where timecode] had to start at one hour so they could backtime things and not shift all those timecodes down for the negative cutter. If you’re working with digital files there’s no need for that anymore.

Then there’s Bins. Having physical folders that I have to drag stuff into and if I want in another folder needs to be duplicated and dragged into other folders, that is based on physical reels of film having to go into physical metal bins and putting gaffers tape on stuff and writing on this stuff. You know, why do we still use that if we’re dealing with digital files that have metadata that we can just click on to organize? I love that Apple is finally treating digital media as digital media.

That’s what the·Media Management tutorial is all about: The huge paradigm shift that everybody needs to make and how we need to do it. We don’t need to do things based on the negative cutting paradigm which was all done to make it easier for people to adapt to a digital world: making it what they were used to. But now, very few of us using NLEs have really touched celluloid film so there’s no need to work according to their rules. And now that Apple have made this paradigm shift, I’ll bet 12 months from now you’ll see Adobe and Avid using metadata in a similar way to how Apple has done it."

We shall see where the other NLE manufacturers stand in a years time!

Written by
Top BloggerThought Leader

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

great house giveaway 2020

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. The shows have also been nominated for a 2021 BAFTA.

Tour de france 2020
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.


BBC snooker the crucible

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.

amazon kindle BF

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.

Plugin Design & Development

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. 

The Future

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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