Apple Releases Final Cut Pro X 10.0.3

Posted on by Larry

UPDATED – Jan. 31, Feb. 1

Today, Apple announced the latest update to Final Cut Pro X. Following its announcement last September that the next major version of the software would include support for multicam editing and broadcast monitoring, this update delivers on that promise.


This FREE update – now available in the Mac App Store – includes:


According to the Release Notes from Apple, Final Cut Pro X version 10.0.3 adds the following features:

  • Multicam editing with automatic sync and support for mixed formats, mixed frame rates, and up to 64 camera angles
  • Media relink for manual reconnect of projects and Events to new media
  • Ability to import and edit layered Photoshop graphics
  • Advanced chroma keying with controls for color sampling, edge quality, and light wrap
  • XML 1.1 with support for exporting basic primary color grades and both importing and exporting effect parameters and audio keyframes
  • Multiple improvements to the Color Board, including new key commands, editable numeric fields, and adjustable parameters that act like infinite sliders when dragged
  • Ability to reorder color corrections in the Inspector
  • Reveal in Event Browser shows clip range in the filmstrip while in List View
  • Batch offset for clip date and time
  • Ability to search text added to Favorite and Reject ranges
  • Automatic restore of projects and Events in case of file corruption
  • Beta version of broadcast monitoring with third-party PCIe and Thunderbolt I/O devices

Final Cut Pro X version 10.0.3 also improves overall stability and performance, and addresses the following issues:

  • Improves performance when editing text in titles
  • Improves performance when applying an effect from the Effect Browser
  • Improves key-framing behavior in the Inspector, with keyframes automatically added when moving to a new point in time and adjusting a parameter
  • Modifies transition behavior so that all newly added transitions use available media and maintain project length
  • Fixes an issue which affected audio solo while skimming
  • Resolves issues related to using Synchronize Clips with media containing a silent audio channel
  • Fixes an issue in which constant speed retiming was not properly applied when using the Paste Effects command


I had a chance to talk to Apple and spend some time with the updated app ahead of today’s release of Final Cut Pro 10.0.3. This isn’t a review – I haven’t had the time for that. Instead, let me give you my initial reactions to the new features in the upgrade.


First, thanks to the hard work of Philip Hodgetts and Greg Clark, Intelligent Assistance has released a utility with Apple’s blessing that supports transferring projects from Final Cut Pro 7 to Final Cut Pro X called “7toX.”

As Philip told me: “We worked very hard to offer a very high fidelity conversion, so that editors can take their Final Cut Pro 7 projects forward to Final Cut Pro X’s efficient working environment.”

With 7toX for Final Cut Pro, the high fidelity translation moves Bins and Sequences from Final Cut Pro 7 to Final Cut Pro X with Keyword Collections representing Bins and Compound Clips converted from Sequences. All Bins and Sequences are recreated with no metadata or log notes from Final Cut Pro 7 being lost.

All Motion tab settings and keyframes are translated into their equivalent in Final Cut Pro X; more than 20 Transitions and 45 Filters are matched and applied, including matching Color Correction filters from Final Cut Pro 7 mapped to the Color Board; and full support for Multicam.

7toX for Final Cut Pro fully reports any variation from the original using Final Cut Pro X’s To Do Markers and the original track numbers are applied to Clips in a Project as a Final Cut Pro X Role.

This is such a significant feature that I’ll cover it more in a separate blog later this week. Click here for more information:


Apple set the standard for multi-camera editing when it was introduced in Final Cut 5 — and totally blew past it with this latest release:

  • Edit up to 64 cameras simultaneously, using 4 banks of 16 images each
  • Combine any video format, frame rate, or image size into the same multicam clip
  • Integrate video, audio, or stills in the same multicam clip
  • Sync clips automatically using audio waveforms or manually using timecode, markers, or other options
  • Reach “inside” a multicam clip and resync clips, apply filters, add or remove angles, or change the angle order at any time in the editing process
  • Instantly switch between proxy and optimized media during playback to maximize hard disk throughput

This feature is amazing. Far more flexible than the multicam in FCP 7, it simplifies multicam editing using either the Viewer or the keyboard. The ability to revise multicam clips even after they are edited to the Timeline is very, very slick..

However, as HD files increase in size, this will benefit from every bit of speed your hard disk can throw at it. This is a perfect application for a Thunderbolt RAID.


I know none of your clips have ever gone off-line, but with all the files I’m juggling over here, it happens to me ALL the time.

Now, we can relink clips from either the Event Browser or the Project Timeline. Linking from the Event Browser reestablishes links to every occurrence of that clip in every Project. Linking clips from the Project Timeline simply reconnects that clip for that Project.

Relinking is as straightforward as it was in FCP 7 – with the added ability to change the links in a Project separate from changing links in the Event Browser.


Importing layered Photoshop files now works the same as it did in Final Cut Pro 7. Each layer of the graphic opens as a layer inside FCP X in what is essentially a compound clip. You can animate individual layers, apply filters, scale, rotate… all the stuff we could do before in 7, we can do again.

Just a note, however, that lPhotoshop ayer effects are not supported. This means that, just as with FCP 7, you need to rasterize any layer effects in Photoshop before bringing the file over to FCP X.


Apple says that this is included in this release, but is still in beta. That’s because to get an external monitor to work, you’ll need a Thunderbolt Mac, connected to either an AJA, Blackmagic Design, or Matrox conversion box, and not all these devices are shipping yet..

AJA has just released their IO XT unit, which is their version of what you’ll need to make this work. I have been told that Blackmagic Design is not far behind; and Matrox has committed to providing gear as well – though that may be a bit farther away.

However, Apple says that while video monitoring works fine for general editing, they are not happy with the performance of video monitoring for multicam clips, so Apple is continuing to work with their partners to get the performance up to their satisfaction.

One of the features Apple first touted in FCP X was its support for ColorSync to maintain consistent color throughout editing. This is an excellent solution for editors that only need to go to the web. What’s missing is any documentation from Apple on how to set this up. I’m hoping that they will publish this workflow on their website in the near future.

UPDATE – Jan. 31: In reading a white paper from AJA about FCP X 10.0.3, I learned that the Kona/3 card is supported in MacPros using updated drivers. Check out the AJA website for more details —

UPDATE – Feb. 1: Blackmagic Design announced this morning support for FCP X with their release of Desktop Video 9.2 beta 1, a free download that supports DeckLink, Multibridge, Intensity, and UltraStudio –


Many file-based cameras assign names to clips that only a cryptologist could love. This update now allows you to rename clips in batches, using naming presets that you can create or modify, from about two dozen template elements.

UPDATE: I just learned that this feature is also in FCP X 10.0.2. I have a note in to Apple to see what’s new about this feature in this version.


But, what really fascinates me is the amount of refinement in the smaller details with this release. Apple seems to have worked hard polishing the details, as well as inventing the big stuff.

For example….

Apple has added more flexibility to the Color Board through additional keyboard shortcuts and the ability to enter corrections numerically.

Video scope keyboard shortcuts have changed. And Command+7 now remembers the last scope you used, rather than returning to the benighted Histogram! (Scopes have also sprouted brightness controls.)

The chroma-keyer, which was totally rewritten for FCP X, has been updated with additional controls brought over from Motion 5. Now it is easier to adjust an image for translucency, add light wrap, and tweak the background color selections to clean up bad lighting, background wrinkles, or just general malfeasance on the part of the production crew.

There’s a lot to like with these keyer settings and the whole combination is a vast improvement over the native keying in FCP 7. Sadly, though, the mask function hasn’t changed and is seriously underpowered.

FCP X now automatically backups up every Project and Event folder. This is designed as an automatic recovery system should some wayward binary bad guys corrupt a file. Backups occur every 15 minutes whenever a file has changed. Since Final Cut already saves everything you do as soon as you do it, these backups are best thought of as disaster recovery.

We can now adjust the camera-stamped date and time associated with any clip. Since this can be used by a multicam clip for syncing, this becomes a very useful addition.

Transitions now default to using available media. Gone is the preference setting for “Full Overlap,” where the entire right side of your project was pulled left to get a transition with insufficent handles to work. Now, if you don’t have enough handles (extra media before the In or after the Out) FCP will popup a dialog asking what you want to do.

New preferences are added to clarify dropped frame warnings and enable broadcast monitors.

There is now a keyboard shortcut to apply a default full-screen title at the position of the skimmer or playhead – Control+T. AND a keyboard shortcut to apply a default lower-third title at the position of the skimmer or playhead – Shift+Control+T. Both of these new titles support full font styling, but don’t come with any annoying animation.



Apple has told me on many occasions that they are committed to improving Final Cut Pro X to meet the needs of video professionals. Their record since then backs this up.

Since Final Cut was released last June, it has had two major updates and one minor bug fix. Several of their innovative features released as part of these updates – Roles and Multicam come immediately to mind – are stunning.

I will be the first to say that FCP X had a very controversial birth. I will also say that this version of Final Cut is not perfect — there are features that I wish it had that are still missing. But, with this update, my list of “I wants” is much shorter. I’m looking forward to exploring this version in more detail and writing about it in coming weeks.

If your deadlines are getting shorter and budgets are tight; and you need a fast, powerful system optimized for tapeless editing, the latest version of Final Cut Pro X delivers an amazing range of features in an easy-to-use package.

If you haven’t looked at Final Cut Pro X in a while, it’s time to take another look. Apple’s been making major improvements.

Let me know what you think.


P.S.While working with the software, I’ve assembled a series of ten training movies highlighting how to use the new features in the 10.0.3 release. Priced at only $19.99, and offering more than an hour of step-by-step traiining, these will get you started fast and right. Click here to learn more.

77 Responses to Apple Releases Final Cut Pro X 10.0.3

← Older Comments Newer Comments →
  1. Jeff Kirkland says:

    Theres no support for my Sony Z7 either but Apple have frequently said it was up to the manufacturers to write import plugins. I’m sensing that FCPX’s plugin architecture is only now getting to a point where that can happen. Keep in mind that FCP7 didn’t natively support a lot of cameras either, I certainly couldn’t import from my Z7 without Sony’s plugin.

    I have workflows that get the job done. It’s an inconvenience but far from a show stopper.

  2. 1Wordpro says:

    The update was not showing up on my machine. So I looked into it. Apple says if your video card is not up to snuff it will not work. Mine is but I’m having to uninstall and reinstall FCPX. Like I want to wait around a couple of hours to do that! But have no choice.

    Here is the Apple info on it

  3. Alex says:

    It’s great news and has many have said, very encouraging. But since most people (even early FCPX adopters) have kept using FCP7 in some capacity for the past year, couldn’t Apple have waited few more months and started with this release? And I don’t mean to rain on anybody’s day (although I will), but it’s unfortunately too little too late. Too little because there is still no good server solution for X, not multi-user or sharing solution, and has long as this doesn’t exist, FCPX is not a platform worth using or learning about, at least in the broadcast world. Too late because the switch has already started to happen. Loosing the Bunim-Murray account to Avid is a pretty big deal in the business (and a pretty big FAIL on Apple’s part, IMHO). And sadly many more L.A. company have started switching, and this update won’t change their mind. And those companies won’t switch back for another 10 years if they ever consider doing so. The past ten long years invested in pushing FCP on the film and broadcast scene, finally getting to the point where a FCP and an Avid editor were paid the same, have been nullified. I’m not angry about FCPX anymore (I still am about Color being end-of-lifed though) and I’m back on Avid which I never though would happen, but I’m pretty bitter about those 10 wasted years.

    Sorry to be so negative, but I feel pretty strongly about this. Have a good day.

  4. Rich says:

    Very encouraging news. FCPX has truly been a reboot for Apple in the sense that just like the original Final Cut, it is a product squarely aimed at NEW editors in the business, not veterans. And it will undoubtedly serve those editors well into the future. And kudos to Larry for sticking with FCP training! At $20 a pop for a new module at every x.0.1 update you are gonna make a killing!

  5. Alex says:

    It will serve the new editors for 10 years. Until they switch it back again. Fun.

  6. Marcus Moore says:

    @ Alex. Sorry you feel so bitter. Yes, some companies have (and will yet) shift back to AVID, but there are always new production companies coming up, who never felt they got “burned” in the last year. They’ll simply evaluate if FCPX will work for their business. The fact that there are already people using it for broadcast production is proof positive that it’s not entirely ill-suited for those jobs.

    Its not ready for everyone yet, and people need to get that work done and make a living, so I’ve never begrudged someone who needed to switch.

    But as the product grows it will gain back marketshare. It’s impossible to see why it wouldn’t.

    If you go back 10 years to when FCP was first released, it was astounding to be able to cut material on relatively low cost equipment and with such cheap hardware- Macs and Firewire drives.

    But look at where we are now- Cutting 4K material off laptops. Hilariously fast Thunderbolt I/O. And software at $300.

    The barriers to inclusion in the “pro” post club are dissolving fast. And those willing to learn the new tools, and who don’t have the hangups of the last 15 years, will reap the benefits of being agile.

    I think it really come down to how you view FCPX. Either you see it an an outright abandonment of film/tv market, OR you see it as shifting gears.

    I think they’re shifting gears, and ultimately we’ll be going faster than ever before.

  7. Caesar Darias says:

    I want to add one more item on my wish-list for future updates and improved workflow.

    Please let FCP X remember in and out points in Events/clip viewer. I don’t want to have to save them as favorites. It’s so much easier to be able to go back and arrow up and down.

    For example, if I want to select an in-point at the exact frame of a previous out-point, it’s easy to do if the the I/O was saved and visible.

  8. Britt Jones says:


    I’ve not moved from FCP7 to FCPX yet. I came to FCP from AVID and the only way to prevent brain damage was to map my keyboard like an AVID keyboard.

    So, just checking to be sure…. can you map a custom keyboard in FCPX as you can do in FCP7?

  9. Mike Gilligan says:

    Our biggest problem shifting to X, is having to learn a whole new system and junking 10 years of 7. We do docs that are on PBS, and we are a one-horse operation, so we have an unthreatened view from the bleachers. It’s the bigger guys who are getting hurt, so I understand their frustration. I would be too. PS: your analysis/tutorials are always great.

  10. David Garmaise says:

    I have FXP 10.0.1. Is it really true that in order for me to upgrade to version 10.0.3, I have to place my application in the trash and then go to the App store and download the new version (for free)? That sounds awfully silly.

    • Larry says:

      Some people had problems with the installation. The fix is to trash the app. Yeah, its a bit silly, but the better answer is that it fixes the problem.


← Older Comments Newer Comments →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Larry Recommends:

FCPX 10.5 Complete

NEW & Updated!

Edit smarter with Larry’s latest training, all available in our store.

Access over 1,900 on-demand video editing courses. Become a member of our Video Training Library today!


Subscribe to Larry's FREE weekly newsletter and save 10%
on your first purchase.