Welcome to our new Final Cut Pro release date, rumours and leaked images article. Here, we'll bring you everything we know about the next version of Apple's Final Cut Pro and the release date so you'll know exactly when the new version of Apple's Final Cut Pro will launch. We'll also fill you in on the expected features and specs for the new Apple software. Finally, we will show you any new Final Cut Pro images that surface online. So check back here regularly to find out about the latest new Final Cut Pro features.
New Final Cut Pro release date
Apple revealed in 2013 that it would be releasing a new version of Final Cut Pro later that year, alongside the new Mac Pro. We expected that this would be optimised to the new AMD FirePro Graphics chips that feature in the new Mac powerhouse.
Apple did indeed release an update to Final Cut Pro in December. This version - Final Cut Pro 10.1 - added 35 new features, many of which take advantage of the new Mac Pro's capabilities. Read more about Final Cut Pro X 10.1 here.
However, this new version of Final Cut Pro wasn't the Final Cut Pro version many had hoped for.
New Final Cut Pro X features
Apple had to optimise Final Cut Pro for the new AMD graphics chips that replace the Nvidia GPUs in existing than graphics from AMD. In order to take advantage of the dual GPUs, FCPX may have needed to be reconfigured. The crux of the matter is the difference between OpenCL and CUDA. If code uses OpenCL, no modification is required. However, those applications that use CUDA-API will need re-coding.
The new Mac Pro will be able to support multiple streams on up to three 4K displays so it was expected that the new version of Final Cut Pro would be designed with 4K in mind (the software already supports the 4K resolution natively).
However, the Final Cut Pro market was hoping for more than that. We asked video professionals what features they hope to see in the new version of Final Cut Pro, you can more in our story: What the video pros want from Final Cut Pro X 10.1.
Let us know what features you hope to see in the comments or on Twitter @MacworldUK.
New Final Cut Pro images
During the presentation in the keynote for the 22 October event Apple's Phil Schiller revealed that Apple had seeded Mac Pro units to certain video and photography professionals for testing with new versions of the software.
Here's the image of Final Cut Pro being used on a Mac Pro.
New Final Cut Pro Price
Users can pick up the current version - Final Cut Pro X - for £199.99 via the Mac App Store. The price of the new version of Final Cut Pro may remain at £199, or it may reduce to £139.99, which is the price of Logic Pro X.
Final Cut Pro 7 to Final Cut Pro X
There may be some clues as to what to expect from the new version of Final Cut Pro if we look at the differences between Final Cut Pro 7 and Final Cut Pro X.
When Apple released Final Cut Pro X in June 2011 it brought a number of new features such as a magnetic timeline, content auto analysis, and background rendering that enables you to keep on working while your Mac chugs away.
At the launch Apple's senior vice president of worldwide product marketing Phil Schiller said: "Final Cut Pro X is the biggest advance in Pro video editing since the original Final Cut Pro. We have shown it to many of the world's best Pro editors, and their jaws have dropped."
Unfortunately not everyone's jaws dropped. Apple's complete re-write of Final Cut Pro wasn't appreciated by everyone. Message boards and Twitter filled up with complaints about the software, with many dismissively calling FCP X nothing more than iMovie Pro.
Despite the Mac App Store dropping the cost of FCP from almost £834 to £199, video editors complained.
When it launched, Final Cut Pro X didn't give pros what they needed. At the time there was no multi-cam support, no export-to-tape feature, no support for EDL, XML, and OMF files, no apparent support for third party plugins, and FCP X users couldn't import their current Final Cut Pro 7 projects.
At the time Apple responded to the complaints about FCP X via an article in the New York Times. The company explained to technology columnist David Pogue that: "The missing features generally fall into three categories. Features that are actually there and have just been moved around, features that Apple intends to restore and features that require a third-party (non-Apple) add-on or plug-in."
The reaction to the launch was so bad that in September 2011 Apple put Final Cut Studio back on sale through a telesales number (it cost £834 and it no longer on sale).
Luckily over the years many of these issues have been rectified, although it was a long wait in some cases. For example, the release of third party software 7toX (which made it possible to convert legacy FCP projects to the new format) didn't come until February 2012. While RED camera support and multichannel audio editing tools, came in October 2012.
Final Cut Pro is currently at version 10.0.9. You can buy it from the Mac App Store here.
In October 2012 Apple pushed out a significant update to Final Cut Pro X. Final Cut Pro X 10.0.6 was the software's most significant update yet: The program now supports the RED camera line, adding both native Redcode Raw editing and transcoding to Apple's ProRes format. The update also adds new multichannel audio editing tools to the timeline, dual viewers (allowing editors to compare shots on the fly), support for MXF plug-ins, a unified import window for both file-based camera systems and folders, and support for chapter markers.
Additionally, the new version lets editors keep Connected Clips in place while slipping, sliding, or moving clips, add freeze-frames more easily, copy and paste attributes with a new Paste window, use new audio controls for Multicam clips, create multiple range selections for a single clip, and export projects and range selections more easily via a redesigned Share interface. FCP's XML has also been updated to version 1.2, allowing editors to import and export metadata to third-party apps.
What Logic Pro X tells us about the new Final Cut Pro
The dubbed-down Final Cut Pro X lead some to suspect that Apple's next version of Logic Pro would be a 'Garageband Pro X'. On his blog, Alex Gollner writes of the fears that this 'Garageband Pro' would be a "dumbed down app for prosumers – which would make life easier for people who only need to work on music very once in a while."
It's a good sign that Apple isn't cutting out legacy Logic Pro files, as they did with the launch for Final Cut Pro X, however. Gollner notes that: "Logic Pro X can import Logic Pro 5 projects, GarageBand projects, MIDI files, AAF files and Final Cut Pro X XML files."
Read our Apple Logic Pro X review
Could Apple ditch the pro market?
Former Apple ad consultant Ken Segall published a blog post recently that claims Apple's late co-founder Steve Jobs once considered ditching Apple's pro products. Borella points to the discontinuation of the 17in MacBook pro, and the lack of an update to Aperture and suggests that this could still happen.
According to Segall, Jobs considered saying goodbye to the pro market when the iMac has established itself as a global bestseller. "During one of the agency's regular meetings with Steve, he shared that he was considering killing the pro products," he revealed. "His rationale was as you might expect: consumer products have an unlimited upside, while pro products are aimed at a niche market that eats up major resources."
Segall suggests that you can see how Apple's view of the pro market is evolving by taking a closer look at the difference between Final Cut Pro 7 and Final Cut Pro X.
Final Cut Pro 7, users needed to put a lot of time and effort into mastering the software, whereas the newer Final Cut Pro X is "less daunting and more seductive, streamlining and automating some of its advanced capabilities."
Segall suggests that, rather than ditching its pro customers completely, Apple is taking its products to a new, high-end consumer market, and asking its pro users to follow.
Apple is inviting some high-end consumers to enjoy the application, rather than focusing purely on the professional market.
Might Apple's new version of Final Cut Pro move even closer to the high-end consumer market?
4K Apple Thunderbolt Display
There are rumours that Apple will launch a 4K display. It seems logical given that the new Mac Pro will support such a display (in fact three of them!) However, the company remains mum over whether the new monitor will offer 4K - suggesting that the Sharp 4K monitor that was being demonstrated alongside the new Mac Pro would be available from Apple.