When Should You Upgrade to Final Cut Studio 2?
[ This article was first published in the June, 2007, issue of
Larry’s Final Cut Pro Newsletter. Click here to subscribe. ]
I’ve been using FCS 2 for about a week and a half. As well, I’ve been talking with the team of Final Cut gurus that write for Edit Well. Finally, I’ve been keeping my eye on my email and the various forums out there. Based on all these sources, here are my recommendations:
- Final Cut Pro 6 — probably one of the most solid releases in its history. Definitely worth upgrading and using.
- DVD Studio Pro 4 — no changes since previous version. Solid and dependable.
- Compressor 3 — significant interface improvements with reasonable performance. Key features include: job chaining, better batch templates, and improved optical flow for speed and frame size changes.
- LiveType 2 — no significant changes. Solid. Motion is sexier, but LiveType does a great job when you just need to animate text.
- Color — a solid release, but it’s interface will take a lot of getting used to. It also demands the absolute most from your system. Check Apple’s system requirements VERY carefully before using this application. (The June issue of Edit Well has two excellent articles by Alexis Van Hurkman on what you need to know to use Color. These are MUST reads for anyone serious about using Color. The issue will be out the last week of June.)
- Soundtrack Pro 2 — I like what Apple has done, but the application isn’t stable. Wait for a dot release before relying on it for serious work.
- Motion 3 — The new tools in Motion are amazing, but the stability is not yet there. Like Soundtrack, use it for experimenting, but wait for a dot release before relying on it for tight deadlines.
All-in-all, Final Cut Studio 2 is a huge step forward. I’m looking forward to learning, using, and teaching it over the next several months.
Keep in mind the two golden rules:
- NEVER upgrade in the middle of a project.
- NEVER upgrade when facing a deadline — give yourself time to learn what’s new in the program.
UPDATE – June 28, 2007
Apple has released an update for all the applications in Final Cut Studio 2. While I have not had a chance to play with it, after talking with Apple the day of the release, I would strongly suggest everyone who has purchased FCS 2.0 to do the update.
If you have not yet upgraded to Final Cut Studio 2 – wait a couple weeks to make sure things have stabilized.
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