20+ Rogue Plugins and Tools for Final Cut Pro X
Tony asks: With previous versions of Final Cut Pro there were tons of plugins and tools to enhance the software. Where did they all go? With Final Cut Pro X it seems like you just purchase and download with no plugin support. What gives? Any resources or a tool that can make the transition to what I payed thousands of dollars for?
Answer: Amidst the excitement for the dramatic FCPX release, it’s still ‘not ready for professional use’ which keeps Apple tight lipped about any 3rd party plugins or enhancements.
Graeme Nattress, one of the best known NLE software developers, has not heard a peep from Apple – complete silence. Nada, zilch, zippo. And developers are always the first to know. It’s therefore highly unlikely that any old plugins will work in FCPX on the day of – or after this first release until Apple gets things in order and gives the official green light.
If you depend on third party plugins, we recommend that you keep a copy of FCP7 on your system for serious work and use the time to get to grips with the new UI of FCPX.
In the meantime, some die-hard Final Cut Pro users like Alexandre Gollner, Leo Hans, sight-creations.com, and fcpeffects.com (to name a few) just couldn’t wait and took the time to create some really cool plugins and tools that you may find useful.
Here are some of the best ones we scoured around the web for and collected thanks to tons of our viewers and listeners, Creative Cow, Youtube, Vimeo and fcp.co:
And this is not it…there will be more to come.
1. 8 Point Mask
8 Point Mask is a filter that lets you create a garbage matte with up to 8 points. Create curves between the points instead of straight lines. This allows you to easily create a mask to extract almost any element you need.
Each point can be turned on and off independently, so you only have to position the points you need, and the points can be animated using keyframes, allowing you to extract a moving object for instance.
If the Motion Templates, Effects and Keying sub-folders aren’t in your Movies folder, create them before first. You don’t need to have Motion installed on your Mac to use this effect.
Much more flexible than the Mask that comes with FCPX
Are you missing some of the classic generators from FCP7 when you moved over to FCPX?
Introducing 12 classic Final Cut Pro Generators that have been published for use in Final Cut Pro X. If you’ve used legacy versions of Final Cut Pro, you’ll immediately recognized these generators. Because of FCP X’s new architecture, these generators are blazingly responsive, and include some new interface enhancements courtesy of Motion 5′s new publishing and rigging features. The best part is, they are FREE and we’ve even included a movie explaining how to install and use them.
Alex4D Dimensions is a Title Generator effect that mattes the edges of a project so the visible area has exactly the pixel dimensions you specify. It helps you make videos with frame dimensions that aren’t available as standard in Final Cut Pro X.
Effect preset enabling you to obscure or highlight faces quickly.
Built in presets:
- Blur Face
- Pixellate Face
- Face Outline
- Face Highlight
Keyframe the mask position using the on screen control in the viewer.
This effect has an onscreen control and is easily keyframed.
This blur effect can be used to mimic selective circular and/or linear focus.
It is a Title Effect (without text) so you can edit it as a connected clip on top of the video you want to apply it to and adjust the length as needed.
In the effect controls (which you will find when you click the “title” button in the inspector) there is a pop-up where you can choose between the following Blur Types:
- a circular gradient blur
- a single linear gradient blur
- a double gradient blur
- a combination of the circular gradient blur and the double linear gradient blur
There are on screen controls for the start end end points for both the linear blurs and the centre of the circular blur. These parameters can also be altered numerically in the inspector and keyframed if needed.
You can use this effect on Titles (including the caustics – if the Title is JUST text then the caustics will just “play” on the text) — just click on the Video tab (to the right of Title and Text at the top of the inspector to get to the parameters.
This is NOT a transition. This is a fully customizable effect – you make your own animation by keyframing the generator.
- Position the aperture anywhere; scale (more of a 3D zoom); set/animate aperture opening; *lens flare* effect with several customizing parameters.
- Generator can be used as a lens/light flare effect only.
To install: unzip the file and drag the Multi Gradient Blur folder to your User/Movies/Motion Templates/Titles folder.
The “timecode” effect in FCPX only generates, but if you use the “timecode” effect from this plugin and publish it to FCPX, it will read the original timecode and you can make a timecode burn-in movie.
Experienced editors know that many jump cuts can be made less jarring if you add an audio cross fade.
Here is a very simple transition that doesn’t modify video edits, but as Final Cut Pro X adds a cross fade by default, the transition is ‘Sound only.’
You can also choose to have the audio cross fade to happen before, at the same time as, or after the video edit.
11. Colorist Toy Box
Essentially equivalent to SC Sharpen Tools, without the sharpening aspects. Extra color blending modes added, Aura effect enhancements and an “Intensity” mix added (was missing from the sharpen tools.)
Drag this FCPX effect onto a clip in your timeline and watch as your footage is magically transformed to simulate a video being recorded on an iPhone. In the inspector you can choose between varying levels of hand shakiness and background blur/bokeh.
3D lights parameters from motion. But quite nice for creating lighting effect for grading etc.
A pack of 4 FCPX transition effects, including Flash Frame, Wind Blur, Swish Pan and Organic Transition. (Unzip the attachment and drag each individual effect into your Motion Templates/Transitions folder – preferably make a new folder inside there.)
Essentially what you’ve got is a transition that “randomly” changes the opacity of the transition layers as they mix between each other, with an added “random” luminance flicker and an optional color overlay flicker for which the default is black.
This effect is built by Robbert-Jan van der – the same guy who made the Classic SLR Viewfinder template that is included in this collection. This great looking photo album template is complete with translucent flysheets.
Wedding videographers pay attention to this!
Two camera style effects:
- a Super 8 look with correct aspect ration frame and film damage, colour filters, etc.
- a tilt shift filter to simulate popular in-camera miniature photography effect
Not perfected yet by any means so any suggestions for improvements gratefully received – the principles of the template are all there, so it’s just finding the right controls to give you what you want.
It’s kind of a “lens/film plane perspective effect with very shallow depth of field, much like selective focus but it can run horizontally or vertically through the frame. The Focus area gets narrow or wider depending on the silt and shift.
This effect simulates a classic SLR viewfinder.
You can keyframe the focus and exposure sliders, give the needle some random fluctuation and when you activate the build out checkbox you get a flipping mirror at the end.
Apple’s Motion 5 makes it easy to create filters for FCPX so the author of this plugin decided to do it himself. He made three so far. Find them in the download:
- Alpha channels, giving a retro look as default
- Letterbox with offset and opacity control
- Simple levels adjustment
19. 3D Transform
Once you apply this effect, you can set the position of a clip in 3D space, and angle of rotation in X, Y and Z directions. More importantly, you can keyframe these values and more to create 3D animation.
- Image position, size, rotation.
- Border on/off, width, color, type (regular/bevel) angle, opacity.
- Drop Shadow on/off, blur, angle, color, distance, opacity.
This is pretty much everything you should need to create any kind of picture-in-picture, split screen or other effect. Three variants of the theme – choose which one you like best.
- Box position, scale and rotation;
- Source image position and scale;
- Mask Scale;
- Drop Shadow Opacity, Color, Blur, Distance, angle and fixed source option;
- Corner roundness;
- Feather and fall-off;
- Border On/Off, width and color;
- Fade in and fade out option.
Also available with onscreen control of box position.
and last but not least…
More to come…