it’s been a little over a year since Apple’s Final Cut Pro transitioned from a ‘hobby’ app to one of my most useful professional tools. My goal was to spend the year transitioning out of Adobe video tools (Premier and After Effects) and relying solely on the entire Final Cut Studio Suite. But as time went on, and my job got more intense, I didn’t have the time for the transition. Although I moved away from Premier and relied on Final Cut Pro as my main video editing tool, the transition to from After Effects to Motion grind to a hault. Although robust in its own right, Motion just didn’t seem to be the powerhouse that Adobe After Effects is. Plus, it took me SO LONG to get into that program and now I’m pretty proficient. And add to the fact i’ve invested hundred of dollars in templates. I just didn’t seem that important to switch.

That is, until I peeped Final Cut Pro X. Apparently, built from the ground up, FCP-X is sporting a whole new interface, it looks like a monster. I watched the introductory video and it looks like they’ve cleaned up all the negative aspects that you had to work around in the previous version. I’m loving the dark interface. I’ve always liked how After Effects and Shake looked. It feels nicer when you’re dealing with bright video. They stand out more and work better for color correction (don’t ask me why. I just does.

And then… there’s Motion 5, which also has an interface update. It looks like it’s more integrated with FCP and the UI seems to be much easier to work with than it’s earlier version. I decided to purchase both Final Cut Pro and Motion today. Why? Well, one BIG thing in it’s favor is the price. With the previous FInal Cut Studio, you were pushing out almost $1000 for the entire Suite (Final Cut + Motion + Color). This new version (which seems exclusively for download from the App Store) runs a total of $350 for Final Cut and Motion (there is no more Color app. It has been integrated into Final Cut Pro X)

After playing around with it all, I can say i’m pleasantly surprised. Even thought there’s a slight learning curve for the UI changes, it runs and performs like a dream. I have it running on my iMac at work and my Macbook Pro 17″. Since it’s a 64bit app now, there seem to be no ‘preview renders’ needed for transitions and most effects. I haven’t played with it enough so i can’t say. Motion seems to be a bit ‘buggy’, but i’m sure that’ll be fixed over the short run with updates from the App store.

All in all, I can’t wait to get my feet wet with a project. I’ll do a full review in a week once I get the hang of the entire suite.