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Apple Final Cut Pro X: In-Depth

Lesson 1 of 42



Apple Final Cut Pro X: In-Depth

Lesson 1 of 42



Lesson Info


My name's larry jordan thanks so very much for joining us I want to talk about final cut pro ten and more importantly I want to give you two key understandings the first is a technical understanding about video editing were to spend a lot of time talking about media management system configuration and editing work flow I get about oh three hundred e mails a day from people that are having problems with the software and one of things that I've realized is that that if you understand how media management work so if you understand how your system gets configured you're gonna have a great time doing video editing if on the other hand you just jump right in and you start to edit and put stuff together all of a sudden you realize that wait a minute I don't know where anything is I don't know what I'm doing and I've got problems because you didn't spend the time getting yourself organized first we're going to spend a lot of time in this first section getting ourselves organized then we'll tal...

k and give you a solid understanding of how final cut ten works were going really emphasize the reason you purchased final cut ten in the first place well talk about importing we'll talk about editing and trimming clips will look at effects will look output however even though we've got three days together we don't have enough time to cover everything inside the application we're going to talk about the basics and then we'll sort of touch on some of the cool stuff and hopefully come back in a second visit and talk more about how to create effects and how to do the really outstandingly bizarre things that video editing is capable of what I really want to do over three days has covered the basics and show you how that works. In fact, we've got so help in covering the basics we've got a studio audience are students studio as it were, and what I want to do before we get too carried away is I'd like to introduce our studio students and I'm goingto start first with you because you have the demeanor of someone that's been in the industry for a while tell us who you are and what you've been up to. My name's ed shoemaker, I live in the redmond, washington area and I'm an editor and a film colorist what film colors now what's that we're the people that take put that blockbuster look on a film so and instead of coming off the camera looking completely grey and washed out because you were shooting it in what they call log and we taken, punch up the back background, make it nice and blue and steely blue and that we punch up the foreground with that nice warm orange look and make sure the actors could be seen so that's, what a film colors does. Plus, we're also really about telling story, just like as an editor, we really want to focus on telling the story, watching the beets as a film colors we really wanted wait, how do you tell stories? It's a colorist? You're not involved with the editing you're not involved with the shooting word is the storytelling survived taken example, this is a I was looking at some film footage where a person was out shooting a feature as a doc they're using all available light and that's it. And so what happens if you have a woman and a man talking to each other? But they're talking to each other through a clothes line and a white sheet she's being kind of koi and the sun is behind her, reflecting off that white sheet, keeping her face well, it it's great, but all essentially size not to be coy, and she pulls that sheet away and all of a sudden that great light, this bouncing her face goes completely dark and so he was the honest become disconnected from her uh as as the speaker and she going way fall out of the story, so was a colorist. What I actually do was as she pulls that sheet across, I actually start bringing the light back up on her face and for the few seconds it on the screen you're fooled because I put a little light behind the guy's head so it looks like a little lights coming from behind him and why keep you in this story by keeping you connected to that actress who you've lost because the sheriff basement dark if you didn't color correct that are correct the finish where you're given up three days of your life you'll be able to attend this training for which I'm very grateful by the way what do you want to learn what's your goal for final cut ten a lot more about media management that's one of the new changes that they did the latest release with the libraries and the events and and the projects how they all kind of came together so I'm really interested in hearing about media management and good work flo you know we all have our own well kind of but it's always created here from professionals like you and great teachers like you other alternatives to workflow in front of him we're going to talk about media management in two phases in this first segment we're going to talk about media management in general especially importance of storage then in a second second we're gonna talk about libraries and events and projects and explained how they worked how media works in the context of final cut so and I'm glad to have you with us and don't hesitate to ask question thank you sitting next to add is hi, I'm bernard on my web sites beaming on photo doc home and I'm just here I'm an editor here in seattle and I just excited to be here and watch you watch you teach what kind of stuff you at it? Um I've done like crowdfunding and corporate stuff, but I also do short films and just, you know, involved in the independent film scene here in seattle, what are some of the recent projects you've worked on it? I worked on this project about the seattle center what was there before? Like the space needle all the um areas was built there's ah, there was a whole school hold warren elementary and lots of other houses that were there and kind of controversial because there was a really needed school for people who had disabilities and stuff and they want to build this seattle center with the space needle for the world's fair. So I'm a little short film about what was there before the whole area was built and kind of go back in time and kind of see past versus progress because you know a lot of things today, you know, they want to make room for something new, but you've got to take down something old so it kind of puts a spotlight on that and describe nice little seattle short film what do you want to learn in three days that you're here? I just wantto, you know, see how you teach a final ten and learned some of the things and tips that you're sharing on the new version and just enjoy the way you teach, excited to be here? I'm going to give you a secret now you can't tell anyone else on how this this is something I've learned over ten, fifteen years of teaching there's two ways that we can teach one is we can achieve perfection, but the problem is when you try to achieve perfection, it takes forever, and so we're not going to seek out perfection. In fact, we're going to create some stuff that's going to make your teeth ache over the next several days, but instead we're going to teach the technique, and when you give up the idea that I have to make it perfect and instead you concentrate on how I want to make it work, all of a sudden the learning becomes a whole lot easier and we'll talk more about this. We get into editing a little later today, but one of the key things I've realized is don't force your students to do what you're doing just say let's, learn the technique, and regardless of how you create it, as long as you learned the technique, what you create is irrelevant. Now when we're doing it for real life contents critical today content is irrelevant we're just going to be working with with clips is entities as opposed to content or not I'm glad to have you here and gentlemen sitting to bernard's left my right you are my name's philip, I'm a local seattle shooter and editor most of my work is shooting, but I do a little bit added nina's well, what kind of shooting do you do? Local news sports some documentaries, mostly live events are mostly scripted stuff a little bit of a mix I shoot a lot of local mariners games in summertime, so what brings you here for three days? I had a project a while back and I had to use final cut pro I gave myself a crash course in and about one day and it was a train wreck s o I'm the beginner here, so I'm just looking for anything really well as a beginner you have bernard and ed have been in the industry for a long period of time. They're very sophisticated individuals who will only ask sophisticated questions I can tell just by looking at them, but what you have is you get to wear the hat of somebody that's brand new and so the questions that I need from you are questions that may seem simple toe a sophisticated editor but you don't know the answer and a lot of other folks don't know the answer so don't hesitate to ask there's no such thing as a stupid question there's just a question too don't know the answer to and I know those other two guys who are way too sophisticated to ask a question like that don't know the ansari there they're just too shy to ask so don't hesitate to ask questions and speak up because the whole way this works is as I can talk for the next month on final cut and really not repeat myself with any material substance so I've gotta scale it down and I want to make sure that what I'm putting in is important to you guys and what I'm leaving out it's not important if you don't ask questions I don't have that feedback we've also got jim looking at questions as well because for those people there they were not able to be with us in the studio yourself for instance I'd love to have you ask questions and otherwise jim is doing his facebook page the entire day so we've got to keep him terrible so ask questions and jim will raise his hand and throw a rock in our direction yes sir yes sir we have a question from hagen and casey hagen in in casey is this class for someone who knows nothing about the software I'm willing to learn but I am just starting out yes, in fact, this class is exactly for somebody that doesn't know the software. Now I'm going to use a lot of industry terms, and I want to try as hard as I can to find them, but I'm going to assume that a you know what a macintosh is two you know how to turn the macintosh on, and three you can start software. If you've got that basic idea and you can move a mouse, then you're fine. You don't need to understand a ton of stuff because I'm going to hopefully explain it to you over the next couple days. Now we're going to move fast, and I fully expect that there's going to be points here where you're saying his lips are moving, but I don't understand what he's talking about so it's going to be really helpful? I think toe watch this class more than once because it's going to be pretty information. Dunster is a lot that we have to cover, but if you do watch it a couple times and you do pay attention to the definitions, I'll show you everything you need to know to be successful in managing your immediate getting yourself started running the application, doing basic editing and even graduating up into effects and being successful at it. But it may take watching a couple times before all this stuff sinks and I've been studying final cut since its first well that's not true but work with final cut since version one point five, which was almost eleven years ago now and maybe more no, I'm not going to think about how old I am we're just going to pretend that we've been doing it for a while but I've been also working intensively with final cut ten since released two almost three years ago now and there's still stuff I discover every day and I spend my days studying it and reading to use your manual and editing with it so don't expect to learn everything all at once let's take a look at what our goals are for today today really is our planning and a setup day we're going to talk about setting up here system and getting yourself organized both from a workflow point of view in a media point of view we're going to look at media management inside final cut and we're going to look at importing media third session which will happen right after lunch when look at organizing the media and editing this is getting right into the heart of how final cut works and then in session for were going look what I call timeline power tools how we can work with media once it's been edited into the timeline so today is organization set up system configuration, media management and editing it will be the closest thing to a math class that we have for the three days on tuesday. We're going to take the second half of editing, which is trimming, trimming, adjusts where two clips touch, then we'll spend an entire session looking at audio toe look at multi cam editing, which is a really powerful feature of being able to read it more than one camera at the same time, and we'll wrap up by making a transition out of editing into effect, starting with transitions and titles on wednesday, we'll continue this whole theme of effects by looking at inspector effects these air what final cut seven people used to call motion effect, and then we'll look att effects that it contained inside the effects browsers, the themes browser, the generator browser will also look at creating simple effects. Now the reason I say simple effects is there are some effects that could take hours to create because of the level of complexity in the number of clips that you're running around. But michael here is to show how the components work as opposed to build something that takes o seventy, five hundred thousand million clips and five hours to build, then probably my favorite session is video color correction now I've asked ad tio hide his eyes when I talk about this because he's been he's been doing color correction for a long time, but a lot of people find color correction intimidating, so we're going to spend an entire sessions one of my favorite things to teach. Well, look att how we use video scopes what contrast is what color is? Well, look at how we khun adjust the contrast how we're gonna just color and will even look at the difference between primary color correction and secondary color correction. If you've never done color correction before this one session, just that one chunk is going to change your life because you'll never look at video the same way again. And the powerful features inside final cut ten make it easy to make very simple and yet very sophisticated adjustments to the color of our video, and then we'll wrap up with looking at a session on export and output, and this is where jim becomes itself, especially vital because I could only talk about exporting and output for about thirty minutes, and we're going to have an hour left. So if you guys don't ask questions, especially you, you three on the studio were gonna be staring at each other with blank looks on our faces, so don't hesitate to ask a question because that's, the way that I'll make sure that we're getting the information you need is part of this course. There's a there's a ton of stuff to cover so let's just take a look at what we're going to this session I'm a firm believer and sort of setting up what we're going to talk about so now we're going to define some key terms we're in describe how to configure your system specifically kinda hardware requirements you need what kind of software requirements explain why storage is more forton in the computer and I want to show you that how you connect your storage is even more critical than you might suspect then we'll describe different kinds of storage in what storage is relevant for video editing and which is not then something that causes most people's brains to just freeze until they decide that you know, I really should learn this is we'll talk about codex now codex are critical except they're kind of hard to understand so we spent a lot of time talking about codex and data rates. The reason this is important is if you don't understand what codex are and you don't understand what data transfer orbit rights are you're setting yourself up for failure is a video editor not because you can't tell stories but because the stupid software isn't doing a stupid ending that you want the stupid thing to get you get you're stuck, we want way want to prevent that and we will in the session we're gonna talk about right now and then we'll wrap up by actually going to the software and take a tour of the final cut ten interface, and we'll be spending the rest of the three days specifically in the software this is just a planning session to start. You know, jim, I was thinking that before we shift gears into defining some key terms, are there any questions that we need to address our concerns that people have that need to be considered? Yes, sir, we do, and the question that I have here is, can we talk about like, what the expectations are for me as a learner and what what can I expect to get out of the full three days? That's a really good question, and the answer is don't try to learn everything all at one time. This course really is designed for youto watch it probably three times to be able to get the full benefit the first, stay with me as best as you can and get the big picture and ask questions when confusion occurs. But don't try and get every little piece of detail it just can't it's going to move too fast it's too dense in the bonus materials in the bonus materials that you get for downloading the show, you're going to get a handout that's two hundred fifty of my favorite keyboard shortcuts, there's more than six hundred fifty keyboard shortcuts inside the application, and I used these regularly because becoming efficient is critical. We'll talk more about that in a few minutes, but don't get, don't get overwhelmed. Don't think you have to learn it all at one time, because assumed she'd let that overwhelm feeling. Hit you, then you lose. You're so busy worrying about the fact that you can't keep up, you can't keep up, and it just gets worse. Let it wash over you, then come back and watch it again, come back and watch it again, and each time you watch it, you're gonna discover something new.

Class Description


  • Import media into Apple Final Cut Pro X
  • Use its media management tools to organize your files
  • Explore the endless possibilities for creating amazing video effects and dig into audio.
  • Sharpen the skills you need to edit, trim, and combine clips to create a dynamic, engaging final cut.


Apple® Final Cut Pro® X has been rocking the film editing world since its initial release in 1999. Today, eleven upgrades later, the video editor's users number in the millions and its editing tools have powered major motion picture and small screen edits. Join Larry Jordan to learn what makes this video editing software so powerful, versatile, and indispensable.

Now an industry standard video editor alongside options like Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro X encompasses pro-level editing tools for Mac. Final Cut Pro is a Mac-only program with professional tools that blow the free video editing software and budget video editors like iMovie, Adobe Premiere Elements, and Movie Maker out of the water. The video software can handle everything from 360-degree video to Hollywood-level productions. But navigating those advanced editing tools is a daunting task for beginners. Pretending Final Cut Pro is an intuitive, beginners program will only leave you frustrated and missing the biggest features.


Whether you are brand new to editing, self-taught, or a seasoned pro, this course will take your editing skills and Apple Final Cut Pro X mastery to a whole new level, from upload to save.

Apple Final Cut Pro X


Larry Jordan is an internationally-renowned consultant, digital media analyst, and trainer with over 35 years of experience as a television producer, director, and editor with national broadcast and corporate credits. He is recognized as the foremost trainer in both Apple Final Cut Pro (Mac) and Adobe Premiere Pro (Mac and Windows) where his informative and entertaining teaching style provides video editors around the world with unique resources to increase productivity and enhance their skills. Jordan is on the faculty at both USC and Video Symphony and the host of the weekly podcast.


  1. Introduction

    Larry Jordan says a majority of the Final Cut Pro X technical help questions he answers stem from jumping right into editing without understanding how the software works. In the first lesson, learn what to expect in the class and why, when you edit videos, you start with organization.

  2. Key Terms

    Video editing tools are often confusing for newbies because of the terminology. Walk through the jargon you need to know and key concepts for Final Cut Pro to get started on the right foot.

  3. System Configuration and RAID Storage

    Final Cut Pro X can run on any Mac except for the Mac mini. Here, learn the best system set up for video editing and learn how to make your budget go the farthest when setting up a computer for video editing, and why storage, not the computer is most important.

  4. Q&A with Creating an Efficient Workflow

    Video editing with Final Cut Pro is just as much about the actual tools as it is about creating an efficient workflow. In this lesson, find the answers to some of the biggest questions in the workflow.

  5. Interface and Media Management

    Understanding the Final Cut Pro X interface helps you navigate through the program from one step of the workflow to the next. Explore Final Cut's single window interface and the three broad sections, as well as where to find the hidden windows and what they do.

  6. Importing Media Part 1

    Final Cut Pro will import any videos supported by your computer, from files that already exist on a hard drive to videos from a camera's SD card. Walk through the import process and options, from basic options to marking favorite locations, when working with files that already exist on the hard drive.

  7. Importing Media Part 2

    Final Cut Pro will also import your media for you from a camera. Larry walks quickly through what's the same when importing from a camera and points out the important differences when using different import methods.

  8. Ratings and Keywords

    Creating a video often means working with multiple, long video files. This lesson walks through organizing video clips to make finding the exact clip you need easy. Larry then walks you through creating the actual project and getting started in the video editing process itself.

  9. Reviewing Clips for Edit

    Time to dig into editing -- but where do you start? Reviewing the available clips to see what to include is a good place to start. Larry walks you through the process, from the keyboard shortcuts, to marking a clip.

  10. Importing Clips

    Once you've identified some clips to work with, it's time to actually add them to your timeline. Jordan walks through the different options from using keyboard shortcuts to mark the in and out to using a simple drag and drop to the timeline. Whichever option you use, Jordan says, don't worry too much about getting it exact because you can fine-tune further later on.

  11. Editing an Interview Demo

    In this essential lesson, see a finished clip and walk through how the interview was assembled. Larry outlines the fundamentals of assembling an interview -- using techniques that work with any type of video edit -- in Apple® Final Cut Pro® X.

  12. Replace Edit and Timeline Index

    Continue to work with the timeline with tricks for replacing clips. Larry walks through simple methods, like using a drag and drop, to more advanced options like the three-point edit, as well as timeline tricks for working with chroma-key. Learn replacement edits along with other timeline tricks in this lesson.

  13. Compound Clips and Auditions

    Compound clips and auditions are specialized functions inside Apple Final Cut Pro. An audition allows video editors to compare clips easily. A compound clip is a project inside of a project. Walk through the how, why and when for these advanced features.

  1. Editing Review

    Jump back into video editing with the editing review that launches day two of this three-day class. Larry reviews the first part of the class and gives you insight into what's next.

  2. Trimming Part 1

    The way clips are assembled in the final video plays a big role on how the final video influences the viewer's emotions. Larry mixes the art of clip trimming with the tools inside Final Cut Pro.

  3. Trimming Part 2

    Trimming isn't always adjusting the beginning and end of a clip. Larry walks through the process of creating a slip trim, as well as tricks like trimming multiple clips at once.

  4. How We Hear

    Jumping into audio, learn the basic terms to audio editing, how we hear, and get started on understanding audio tracks inside Final Cut Pro.

  5. Audio Key Terms with Q&A

    Continue unraveling audio editing with key audio terms that aren't specific to Final Cut Pro. Learn how sound is visually represented and how to set levels for the best sound.

  6. Audio Basics, Meters, and Inspector

    Work with levels and audio inside the Final Cut Pro timeline by diving into the video editor's basic audio tools. Larry walks the class through levels, audio meters, keyframes and more. Learn how to eliminate a cough from the audio, how to reset parameters and more.

  7. Audio Q&A

    Audio is a big component to understanding video editing. Find the answers to the most frequently asked questions with this quick lesson using questions from students just like you.

  8. Dual System Sound and Audio Analysis

    Video and sound are sometimes recorded separately -- often when the mic built-into the DSLR or GoPro used to record the video isn't great at capturing audio. Larry walks through the process of syncing audio to the clip with double system recording along with the audio analysis tool that allows Final Cut to conduct an automatic analysis and fix some audio problems.

  9. Multicam Editing Part 1

    Editing video shot with multiple cameras is a common task in the video industry -- and Final Cut Pro has tools designed just for the task. Larry walks through the basics of multicam editing and getting started with the multicam feature. Learn how to group the cameras, create a new multicam clip and adjust the order using the angle editor to prep the workspace for working with videos from multiple cameras.

  10. Multicam Editing Part 2

    Once the footage is grouped and ready, follow Larry through the process of finessing those multiple feeds into a cohesive video. Start with setting the audio to a single camera, then move into switching the camera angles with a simple click and more advanced multicam tools.

  11. Transitions Part 1

    Transitions help make moving from multiple cuts a smooth experience. Learn the keyboard shortcuts for transitions, timing transition adjustments, and adjusting a transition with a roll trim.

  12. Transitions Part 2

    Creating transitions is an art -- learn the three main types of transitions, when to use them, what emotions transitions bring, and working with transitions in Final Cut Pro.

  13. Formatting and Animating Titles

    Titles reinforce key pieces of information, Larry says. Learn how to use titles, how long to leave titles up, where to place titles, and how to format titles in Final Cut Pro.

  1. Additional Effects

    Titles aren't the only type of special effects you can create inside Final Cut Pro. In the first lesson of the final day of the class, get a peek at what's up ahead, including how to add video stabilization, correct rolling shutter, work with images and create special effects like the Ken Burns effect.

  2. Editing and Trimming Review

    Recap the editing and trimming essentials to review what Larry says is the most essential thing to understand on using Final Cut Pro. Larry puts all the editing and trimming together in a final look at the process.

  3. Changing Speed of a Clip

    The speed of a clip can create drama. Learn how to manipulate the timeline with techniques like freeze frames, variable speed, and slow motion. Decipher the retime menu and learn the tools for manipulating time.

  4. Inspector Effects

    The Inspector inside Final Cut Pro allows video editors to make changes, from adding video stabilization to adjusting the aspect ratio. Follow Larry through the Inspector Effects to learn the special effects hiding in this menu.

  5. The Effects Browsers and Generators

    Video editors can create their own videos directly inside Final Cut Pro using Generators, a tool that's helpful for creating backgrounds for infographics and other items. Larry walks through the Generators and how to use them, along with diving into the Effects Browser interface.

  6. Blend Modes

    Blend Modes originated in Photoshop, but introduce some interesting special effects for video editors as well. Learn how to use blend modes, change the opacity for regular clips and picture-in-picture, and more in this lesson.

  7. Effects Q&A

    Dive into the most frequently asked questions on special effects as Larry explores questions posed by students just like you.

  8. Simple Effects

    Final Cut Pro has a number of different special effects options. Larry walks you through the most useful special effects and how to use them, so that you'll know how to manipulate those oddball effects too.

  9. Intro to Color Correction

    Color correction is a big enough task that entire careers are dedicated to the task. Learn what you need to know on color correction basics to successfully create a color-corrected video inside Final Cut Pro.

  10. Video Scopes

    Final Cut Pro uses three main video scopes -- the waveform monitor, the vectorscope, and the histogram. Larry walks through how to use each tool in color correction.

  11. Color Correcting for Video

    Learn what colors are most essential to get right and how to manually adjust color in videos inside this lesson. Work with the vectorscope and waveform monitor to edit color in a video.

  12. Color Correcting Skintone

    If the skin color is off, the entire video looks off. Larry walks you through how to adjust skin tones. Every skin tone is different -- this lesson is designed to give you the tools and know-how to correct for every skin tone.

  13. Color Correction Q&A

    Dive into the most common questions on color correction with this short lesson taking questions from students.

  14. Audio Effects Part 1

    Visual effects are only half of the special effects equation. Walk through audio effects, from manipulating audio levels to creating a stereo mix.

  15. Audio Effects Part 2

    Continue digging into audio special effects with advanced techniques inside Final Cut Pro. Work with channel filters to mix voice and music and the limiter filter to correct audio that's too soft.

  16. Exporting and Sharing

    After all that editing, how do you share your video? Walk through the export process, from exporting an XTML and a master file to sharing to YouTube directly from Final Cut Pro. Learn about exporting to different file formats and video formats, including .mp4.


a Creativelive Student

Absolutely one of the best & easy to follow teaching / learning sessions for this product. Larry has a great approach & insight into delivering a wealth of information from his years of experience that budding video engineers will certainly benefit from with a product that is powerful & great to use. I'm enjoying the journey to better understand & use this great product, expanding my experience in producing awesome video presentations. Great work Larry, & also huge fan of creativelive Keep up the great work you all do to assist budding producers in mastering their skills. Noel Blake Melbourne Australia


Final Cut Pro with Larry Jordan has been of enormous help to me just stating in FCPX. Larry has a unique way of getting the message on the basics across in an easy to understand manner. I have not yet looked at the entire course as I am practicing the steps as I go through the course. Many programs of FCP are not presented in the easy to follow manner thatL array does so well. I am 100% delighted with my purchase. I am in Sydney, Australia, and, due to the time difference it is impractical to view courses live. So I had to purchase on trust which in this case was a good choice. It would be good if Creative Live could perhaps rerun programs so overseas folks could view them at a convenient time. The courses still need to be purchased as I find it best to run it on another monitor and put what is taught into practice. Well done and thanks for the special offer in July.

a Creativelive Student

Attending this class was really a life-changing experience. Larry is a wonderful teacher and clearly on top of the program and methodology, and the way he structured the course, did frequent reviews and constant technique reminders (naming keyboard shortcuts as he did them, for example) really added a lot to the presentation. The depth of the class was very much appreciated, and his command of a complex subject showed that it was possible. I have wanted to understand FCP for several years and have only gotten the beginnings of a handle on it in the last 6 months or so. This class was an exponential knowledge upload and I hope will allow me to do lots of things I've only wondered about. I thought Jim was a good foil for Larry and did a nice job keeping things together, even when there was a technical problem. The value for me of being able to sit through the class before deciding to purchase was huge, and I am very much looking forward to reviewing the videos as questions come up. The class was very thorough and I didn't feel anything was being left out. Thank you so much for making it available.

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