✎ Latest Free FCPX Effects

All LCD monitors have at least 2 frames delay relative to the source audio.* Consumer TVs often have 4 frames or more. That's why the fancy home video AV receivers usually have an audio delay adjustment buried in their setup pages.

I get around the issue by monitoring the audio from my broadcast monitor's audio out (Flanders Scientific BM23(?). The monitor is fed an HD-SDI signal from an AJA T-Tap. The monitor disembeds the audio from the SDI stream and adds the correct delay. So the audio from the picture monitor feeds my audio monitors and is always in sync.

Audio coming from the computer output is always advanced a couple of frames relative to the display, but I don't use that audio except to check the mix on the less-than-ideal computer monitor speakers (like checking a mix on Auratones back in the day...). The audio from my computer monitor is typically in sync with its video, or close enough.

* The Flanders Scientific monitors (and likely other pro brands) have a "fast mode," which reduces the delay at the expense of a slight decrease in picture quality.

Jeff Markgraf replied to the topic 'Collapse connected clips?' in the forum. 2 years ago

Dimitri is talking about an Avid-style "collapse layers" functionality. Collapsing the layers into a single clip really just changes how it's shown in the timeline. The collapsed clip can be expanded in the timeline by double clicking it, and then re-collapsed. No separate clip or container is ever created in the bin.

What's good about the Avid implementation is that a collapsed clip can be opened in place, so the individual layers can me moved and modified in context. This can only be done in FCP by breaking apart the compound and recreating it after making the adjustments. Remaking the compound then requires renaming or accepting the default name. This can be a little clunky for those of us who typically name the compound clip. I don't think breaking apart the compound deletes its reference in the browser, so the compound clip name will have to be up-versioned each time it gets broken apart and remade. (I may be wrong about not deleting the original compound clip item in the browser when breaking apart.)

I've given feedback about wanting an "expand in place" command for compounds to several Apple reps. Fingers crossed it gets implemented.

Hi Ronny

I agree - I don't think the problem is on the server end. Having Googled the issue, as you suggested, I suspect corrupt renders or a bad file.

One of the users who had the problem reports no problems today. Only difference is he moved his connected clips (over a slug) down into the primary storyline today. Maybe just a coincidence. Maybe it forced a new render or something.

What puzzles me is that I could export his sequences just fine from my system when he could not from his system. But I'll keep an eye on this issue.

(cross posted on Creative Cow - hope you don't mind)

Strange issue that came up today. Here's the background:

10 seats of FCPX 10.3.4 connected via 1GigE (through a switch) to a Jellyfish server. (3 seats directly connected at 10GigE.). Libraries live on the server in their own folder. Media on the sever in a different folder (with subfolders). Media is a mix of ProRes HD, XDCam 35, some 4k, etc.

Everything working as expected until today. Suddenly 2 users were unable to export some of their sequences. Attempting to share with any preset resulted in nothing - no export dialogue at all. Command+E also did nothing. No sequences in the library would export.

Sequences in a different library open on the same machine would export. Also, opening the sequences in the non-exporting library on another system worked fine.

Two different users had this happen to them in one afternoon. Restarting FCP did not help. Restarting the Mac did not help. Will try restarting FCP and deleting preferences, but I'm not hopeful.

I am at a loss to explain or fix this odd behavior.

Anyone experience this before? Any thoughts?

Jeff Markgraf replied to the topic 'MacOS High Sierra - What works and doesn't work?' in the forum. 3 years ago

Just updated to High Sierra and AJA T-Tap stopped working. Current driver (13.0.0, June 2016). Turn on A/V output and video freezes and FCP locks up, requiring a force quit. I can only get it back by launching with deleting preferences to turn A/V back off.

To clarify: T-Tap works fine, just not with FCP.


Continuing the discussion...

there are sub-frames in video

I don't think that's true. I can't, for example, specify a 2.5 second video dissolve. Only 2 or 3 seconds. Nor can I trim, say, 4.7 frames of video off the end of a clip.

So why would there ever be a decimal value attached to a fade rate indicator when using the video opacity handle? I get it for audio, because there are subframes. But even there, aren't the subframes expressed as samples, rather than as decimal units?

FWIW, the decimal/non decimal display applies to both audio and video: both either show decimals or don't.
I'd post a screen shot of what I'm talking about, but the bug isn't happening at the moment.

Ben, as far as trims and transitions - I'm with you there. I use the trim modes as they're meant to be used, and I find them very well thought out. And I typically use transitions, especially in the primary story line. The opacity ramp method is mostly for connected clips or especially for dips to and/or from black, which is very cumbersome to achieve using the always-centered crossfade transition.

And a final point to clarify - the "novice user" description refers to my relative lack of experience with Motion. I've been editing since the days of quad machines and EditTec, CMX, etc. (said the old man as he hobbled over to his recliner... ;) ;) )

Hi Ben and Karsten. Thanks for responding. I fear I haven't been as clear as I should have.

I'm not making a transition, I'm making an effect. The effect uses the "fade in/out" behavior to perform an opacity ramp up to create a fade in of the clip to which it is applied in FCP. If there is a video clip underneath the clip to which the effect is applied, then the fade acts as a dissolve. (Those old enough to remember the Immix Video Cube will recall that this is precisely how one created a dissolve in that NLE.)

At your suggestion, I checked the frame rate of the Motion project, which I had created as a 4k 59.94 fps project. Just to experiment, I created a new project at HD 1920x1080, 29.97 fps. Lo and behold, the new effect works properly in FCP.

I am puzzled at this result, since in the broadcast world, 59.94 and 29.97 are typically used interchangeably to describe the same frame rate (fields vs. frames). But whatever the reason, making theMotion effect timebase 29.97fps works for 1080i 29.97 FCP projects. It remains to be seen if the 29.97 transition rates scale properly when used in a 23.98 project.

More to come...

Hi Ben.

Nothing wrong with the cross dissolve. My intent is to replace using the opacity fade handles, for which there is no keyboard shortcut or direct access (unlike the new "add audio fades" feature).

I often prefer to use the opacity fade method, especially since the cross dissolve has no means of specifying "starting at" or"ending at" transition. The process of selecting , CTL-V, twirling the triangle, pulling the little fade button, then CTL-V to collapse the keyframe editor is kind of cumbersome.

In addition, I've noticed that for the last couple of FCP builds, I have an intermittent UI bug in which the fade rate shows frames and subframes for the fade values. In other words, pulling the fade handle shows increments like 1.87, or 3.94, or 10.16 instead of 2 or 4 or 10 frames. This is strange, since there are obviously no subframes to deal with in video. It's also annoying, as it rarely reads as an even number of frames (2.00, or 10.00, etc.). Obviously, the fade rate must be rounding up or down. But this intermittent display bug is really distracting. It happens at least 50% of the time, starting sometime after version 10.2

So, given all this silliness, I thought making a pre-defined 10 frame fade-in and fade-out effect (adjustable in the inspector to a different rate) that I can just drag or double click onto a clip would be an easy workaround. And it is easy. But the duration is half of what it should be. The duration is correct in Motion, but not in FCP.

Any thoughts on why this could be happening?

Hello all.

I'm trying to create a simple fade in (and fade out) effect in Motion for use in FCPX. Seems simple enough: Create a new FCP effect, apply a fade in-out behavior at the beginning of the timeline, put a mandatory build in (or build out) marker on the timeline, publish the fade in (or fade out) rate and delay parameters and save the effect.

All works as expected -- except: when I apply the effect in FCPX, the duration of the fade is half of what it should be. So a 10 frame fade in is actually only 5 frames. 20 frames yields a 10 frame fade up. And so on.

I'm at a loss to explain this behavior. Am I missing something obvious? Thanks in advance for any help.

Current release of Motion 5 and FCPX 10.3.3
Current Sierra OS
2013 MacPro (trashcan)

Jeff Markgraf replied to the topic 'Publishing Fade In/Fade Out to FCPX' in the forum. 4 years ago

Karsten, thanks for looking into this. It's a challenge, that's for sure. I think you're right, doing the job for real will require the SDK and serious programming knowledge. Maybe Apple will take the feedback someday and implement the feature. I mean, they did it for audio...so one can hope.

Jeff Markgraf replied to the topic 'Publishing Fade In/Fade Out to FCPX' in the forum. 4 years ago

Sorry for any confusion, Karsten. FCPX.guru has the right idea.

Dissolves are always centered on the cut point, which makes them clumsy to work with. Simply ramping up the opacity of the connected clip from zero is an easy way to accomplish a dissolve starting at the cut point. (Same goes for a fade ending at the out point.)

The "wish" I have is that these opacity ramps could be added directly, as is now possible (as of 10.3) with audio fades. For now, video fades can only be accomplished by opening the video animation view and then twirling open the video opacity view and then pulling the little button over. It's cumbersome, and it's not precise. In fact, with the 10.3 update, the fade rate now shows apparent fractions of a frame, instead of being limited to frames. Obviously, this doesn't make sense - no such thing as video subframes.

I was hoping that a "fade in" behavior could be published from Motion, in the same manner as Alex4D's "grow/shrink" effect. Either as an effect or as a title. But no such luck. I thought there was a way to make certain transitions affect only the connected clip, rather than the clip underneath as well. Something to do with titles with empty drop zones or some such thing.


Jeff Markgraf created a new topic ' Publishing Fade In/Fade Out to FCPX' in the forum. 4 years ago

So I get what Tony Gallardo is saying with his "war on keyframes" post about using Motion behaviors in X. Great idea.

One thing that has always bugged me about X is that there is no direct way to add a fade in or out to the video. Either add a dissolve (which forces a secondary storyline) or expand the clip and get into the opacity layer and drag that little button to ramp the opacity up or down. It's both cumbersome and not very precise.

In the spirit of Tony's method, I thought I'd try to publish a fade in/fade out behavior, perhaps on a blank title as an adjustment layer. But I can't seem to make that work. The fade forces the underlying clip to start in black and fade up, rather than fade the opacity of the layer under it. Nor can I modify Alex 4D's adjustment layer to add the fade behavior - same thing happens.

I realize I don't know Motion well enough to deal with this. Any kind soul here have any thoughts on whether this is even possible?

Jeff Markgraf created a new topic ' Peter's audio compressor presets' in the forum. 5 years ago

Peter asked if anyone was interested in his audio compressor presets.

"But of course, Mr. Bond!"

I'm generally lazy, so I'm happy to snag things like audio compressors where someone has already tweaked them up for broadcast.

Please post them, just like you did for the audio fade presets.

Jeff Markgraf replied to the topic 'FCPX to Premiere' in the forum. 5 years ago

Haven't tried using Resolve as a translator to Premiere. X to Avid or Avid to X is a nightmare. Premiere is probably better, but the whole process is fraught. Resolve really wasn't intended to translate XML, so I guess it's a miracle if it works even a little bit.

Jeff Markgraf replied to the topic 'FCPX to Premiere' in the forum. 5 years ago


I'm not trying to make any kind of statement on either side of the "rental" argument. I was just trying to characterize the forum on the COW. I have no dog in this race at all.

I certainly understand the reluctance to embrace the rental model. On principle alone, it seems a little creepy to me. And your point about tax consequences and other business considerations makes good sense.

On the other hand, I do get the practical side of just swallowing the distaste and getting on with your work. Especially if you're primarily an After Effects user. I know Motion is far more capable than many people realize. And there are now some decent alternatives to Photoshop, etc. But I imagine it's hard for many to just walk away from AE.

Since I don't do motion graphics, it's all theoretical to me, but I think I understand both sides. I was more interested in pointing out the intensity of the flame war over this issue. Some of the prose over there is decidedly purple -- and then some!

Back to the OP, I completely agree about the need to plunge in and learn the new tool. And let's face it, it's just a different tool for editing. Avid and Premiere and FCP and Lightworks are all far more alike than they are different. (Although FCP does stretch it a bit more than the others.)

Jeff Markgraf replied to the topic 'FCPX to Premiere' in the forum. 5 years ago

"Adobe Creative Cloud or Not: The Debate" is a forum on Creative Cow (creativecow.net) that is something of an analogue of the COW's "FCPX or Not: The Debate" forum. Not very active at the moment, but not so long ago was a frothing hotbed of anti-Adobe sentiment. In between the anger and hysteria, the whole issue got a pretty thorough debate.

Bottom line: if you stop the rental, you lose the ability to open your projects. Everything remains local, so you have all your footage, etc. If you need to access the projects again, simply renew the rental by paying the monthly fee. If you're only an occasional user, this may be useful. 3 months on, 6 months off, then a month back on again, etc. If you're a full time user, it works out about the same over the long run as the old perpetual license (buy it once and own it forever).

The level of hate regarding the "rental" model is truly awesome to behold. Those most firmly in the NO camp mostly object on principle. Those most firmly in the YES camp tend to see it a practicality: "I want/need the features, so I'll pay the rental...no big deal."

Since you're going to an Adobe-based company, it's a moot point. I'm not sure the PPro -- AE dynamic linking is as trouble-free and amazing as it's cracked up to be, but it certainly seems to makes sense for as After Effects-based work flow.

As I understand it, there is a very active Adobe community online, so you should have no trouble getting support from fellow users.

All concerned seem to agree that Adobe has made significant improvements to PPro in the last couple of years (it was mostly considered to be a bit of a joke as an editor before that). Apparently a fair number of happy former FCP 7 users have made the switch. But it still has some issues. And it certainly is no FCP X! If you used FCP 7 or Avid, you should be fine. If you only know X, you'll also be fine...you'll just wonder why it all has to be so difficult to use ;-)

To your original question:
FCP X XML ==> FCP 7 (via X to 7 from Philip Hodgetts), then FCP 7 XML ==> Premiere Pro should work reasonably well. Also, FCPX to AE via Clip Exporter is useful. Don't think there's a Motion translation...

Jeff Markgraf replied to the topic 'Broadcast safe filter÷' in the forum. 5 years ago

A couple of thoughts...

Yes, of course, proper grading is the first, best defense when it comes to proper levels. (I might argue that it actually starts at the camera, by lighting and exposing properly. But I digress...) There are times, however, when grading, that one may need to push the highlights and force the peaks up into illegal levels, say 110 IRE. Not a big deal, and clamping those peaks back to 100 will likely be unnoticeable. Same with color: if I need to push the reds a bit, a little piece may go a little illegal, but clamping it back a few units of chroma isn't going to jump out.

In the case of FCP's BSF, the clamping can be dialed back from full, hard clamping (100%) all the way down to no effect (0%), So you can easily make it a "soft" clamp, just like in After Effects or is Avid by tweaking the clip limit. So it's not an either-or situation.

One issue with the FCP filter is that it will only do luma or chroma, but not both. It's not that having to potentially use two instances of the filter is a problem, but I would prefer to have both available in the same effect. Not a biggie.

Regarding compounds versus adjustment layer: compound clips carry a couple of "gotchas" with them. For me, the main issue is that I can't "open in place." So once several layers are compounded, any tweaking can only be done by opening the clip in its own timeline, which removes it from the context of the main timeline. So I can't see how my tweaks interact with anything above or below the compound without switching back and forth between timelines. Very cumbersome. (Avid and Resolve both have the ability to expand a compound (or "collapsed") clip in the main timeline. Don't know about PPro, as I've never used it.)

By using an adjustment layer above all the other layers (including any compound clips that may be in the timeline), I can move and tweak clips at will. My broadcast safe clamp will always stay floating on top as the last step in the video chain. And since I can dial back the amount, I can soft clip the whole timeline (if needed) and still apply another instance of the clamp to individual clips that may need it without making the rest of the the timeline ugly.

only compound when absolutely necessary, use an adjustment layer for clamping, make it soft, do proper correction before clamping. And FCP REALLY needs to get "open in place" for working with compounds.

Greg thanks user 'Image Samba' in the forum message ' Broadcast safe filter÷'. 5 years ago
Jeff Markgraf replied to the topic 'Broadcast safe filter÷' in the forum. 5 years ago

Try applying the broadcast safe filter as an adjustment layer above your timeline. I think the adjustment layer is from Alex 4D. It's essentially an empty title, which you can then modify like any other clip. (Much like putting an effect on an upper track in Avid.) Because it is on a higher level (track?!!?!!), it will clamp everything below it.