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Discussing the editing of all formats with FCS, FCP, FCE

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Old April 27th, 2009, 01:26 AM   #1
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plugins for fcp

Fcp doesn't have all the effects I need. Is there a good place to get effects and plugins that any one knows of, or is the best to try and create effects in shake and motion?
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Old April 27th, 2009, 06:11 AM   #2
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What effects are you lacking in FCP?
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Old May 2nd, 2009, 09:14 AM   #3
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FCP Plugins

Red Giant software has some great plugins for FCP--3D Stroke, Shine, Starglow, Radium Glow, Text Anarchy and Psunami. Psunami is used for creating water simulations. They also offer Magic Bullet suites for managing color and looks but I tend to stick to FCP rather than use a plugin. Details at Red Giant Software: Support - Compatibility - Host Applications
Jim Wood
Baby Kitty Productions
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Old May 2nd, 2009, 09:59 AM   #4
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Here's a list I put together for a colleague of mine at a local broadcast station that was transitioning to FCP. I'm certain this is not an exhaustive list, but it's everything I could think of at the time.

First, there's a few separate programs I would recommend as adjuncts to any FCP system:

MPEG Streamclip is a must-have. This shareware program is a video converter, great at ripping DVD MPEGs into usable Quicktime files for FCP:
Squared 5 - MPEG Streamclip video converter for Mac and Windows

VLC Media Player will often play videos no other player can open. Best of all, it's free!
VideoLAN - Free and Open Source software and video streaming solutions for every OS!

Open Office just gets better with each release. It's an open-source MSOffice replacement. Formerly, OoO (from - The Free and Open Productivity Suite) required X11 to run on Mac OSX, so NeoOffice is the port to OSX that runs native:

Audacity is a free, down-and dirty waveform editor. Perfect for when you have to do a quick recording or tweak:
Audacity: Free Audio Editor and Recorder

Now, I don't always appreciate or even like Digital Juice's animation styles, I have to grudgingly admit that owning the Editor's Toolkit 1 & 2, 10 Jumpbacks, and the BackTracks 1 & 2 have saved me tons of time mucking around in AfterEffects, or previewing through our old buyout music libraries. I typically alter the stuff a lot, but with so much raw graphics to start with, it still can save time:
Digital Juice - The Leader in Royalty Free Professional Animations, Stock Footage, Music, Layered Graphics, Clip Art and Templates

12 Inch Design is an up-and-comer that has animations, as well:
Professional Video Backgrounds, Lower Thirds, Animated Elements and more. Don't just edit. Design.

If you're in broadcast, Freeplay Music may be of interest to you, as well:
Freeplay Music, Broadcast Production Music Library, Free and Mp3 Music Downloads, See Usage Terms.

And now, the FCP plugins:

GenArts Sapphire Plug-ins.
Probably the largest selection/best quality of all, but a bit pricey at $1699 for the whole suite:
Sapphire Plug-ins for Apple FxPlug products
(still samples of all effects)
Sapphire Plug-ins for Apple FxPlug: Picture Index

I have Noise industries' FxFactory Pro. VERY interesting at around $400:
Noise Industries
Noise Industries - FxFactory

Final Effects Complete
A stalwart plugin set, formerly for, then owned by Media100, now owned by Boris. Good variety, but some are hard to get used to how to use them. Not quite as useful now that Motion has 3D particles. I have this set myself for After Effects. $895.
Final Effects Complete: Video Filters and Transitions Plugin

I can't believe how much Boris' page for FEC sucks, so here's a more in-depth description from Toolfarm:
Boris FX, Inc. Final Effects Complete - PlugInFinder | Toolfarm's Plug-in Finder

Speaking of toolfarm - they plain just rock. Here's a list of just about every plugin I'll be talking about:
Apple Final Cut Pro Plug-ins - create subtitles, special effects, camera filters, film looks, lighting effects, keying, rotoscoping, painting, color correction and compositing tools.

Boris makes a few other products for FCP, but I just never loved the Boris-style interface (a Boris titling application actually comes standard with FCP):
Plugins for Apple Final Cut Pro

If you need to do a lot of Keying, dvgarage makes some fairly low-cost plugins that go beyond FCP's stock keying functions:
dvGarage - Training and Tools for the Next Generation

Red Giant Software sells a ton of cool plugins, including Magic Bullet, Primatte and the Trapcode products. I own the Magic Bullet Editors (Looks) $399:
Red Giant Software: Visual Effects Plugins for Digital Video

I would also take a look at Trapcode's 3D Stroke for broadcast design work $99:
Trapcode - Products

Red Giant also sells a bundle with Trapcode's Shine, Starglow & 3D Stroke $229:
Red Giant Software: Visual Effects Plugins for Digital Video

remember, you can actually use some After Effects filters within FCP - you just need to be clear with the manufacturer if their AE plugin works within FCP. The ones based on the fxplug architecture are "native" to FCP, and I believe Motion, so those will render the fastest. Here's a list from Toolfarm of fxplug native plugins:
FxPlug - PlugInFinder | Toolfarm's Plug-in Finder

Graeme Natress' plugins really rock, but are not always the fastest renderers. I have the Film Effects, $100:

CHV Plugins have some interesting plugins. I don't know if I'd spring for a big bundle with them, but some of the individual FX-script plugins are interesting, such as the repair ones:
Plugins for Final Cut Pro, Final Cut Express and Motion by CHV-electronics

Digital Anarchy makes a few sets for FCP - don't know if they would be useful, though.
Adobe Photoshop Plugins and Filters :: Digital Photography Special Effects :: Photoshop, Photoshop Elements :: Digital Anarchy

Digital Film Tools has a few for compositing and keying:
55mm Digital Optical Filters

Automatic Duck is a must if you have to roundtrip to/from FCP to Avid or After Effects, but they're software is pricey:
Automatic Duck, Inc.

Synthetic Aperture's Color Finesse was really cool before Apple bought Final Touch and renamed it Color. I wouldn't have paid $600, though - I think it came free with AE 7. They have a few cool products, though:
Synthetic Aperture

The Foundry's Tinderbox plugins for AfterEffects are very cool - check to see if they work in FCP:
The Foundry - Home Page

CoreMelt makes a super-cool set of low-priced plugins. Check out the $99 PolyChrome transitions demo reel:

CoreMelt plugins for Final Cut Pro, Final Cut Express, After Effects and Motion - PolyChrome Demo Movie

CoreMelt plugins for Final Cut Pro, Final Cut Express, After Effects and Motion - Home

A guy named Patrick Sheffield makes a few interesting plugins, but his $149 Electronic Makeup Artist seems like almost a must-have. If you're doing promos and bumpers, your anchors will think you're a genius after the tasteful application of this filter. Make the talent look good, and they'll love you forever.

Sheffield Softworks Plugins for Final Cut Pro

Luca's Plugin Bundle is free (gotta love free):

Luca's Plugins

Hope this helps!
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Old May 2nd, 2009, 04:34 PM   #5
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May I be the first to thank you Scott! Very, very helpful post. I didn't know a lot of them and I bookmarked almost all of them now. Thanks a lot!

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Old May 2nd, 2009, 05:39 PM   #6
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Well Scott, that was just about as awesome as can be. Thanks for a great and comprehensive list.

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Old May 2nd, 2009, 10:59 PM   #7
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Request for a sticky!
I like my oatmeal lumpy.
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 07:36 AM   #8
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I second that request!
"Get Er Done!!!"
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 08:22 AM   #9
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Somebody should make that a sticky and append it every 6 months or so. Thanks for the great info Scott!
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Old May 3rd, 2009, 10:06 AM   #10
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Listed on one of the collections, but a great plugin for keying DV footage - If you're shooting interlaced, this one also works on a field by field basis so no need to deinterlace before keying:

Oak Street Software VKey - PlugInFinder | Toolfarm's Plug-in Finder
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Old May 19th, 2009, 05:13 PM   #11
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Neat Video Plugin

Ok, The above lists are great plugins (Red Giant have an amazing collection and Magic bullet 'looks' is great, Nattress is very effective as well and Sapphire are top quality) so I'll just add my two cents worth:
I just discovered 'Neat Video' plugin for FCP (it's relatively new for FCP, about a month old). and this little plugin is AMAZING for noise reduction originating from digital images (grain and so forth).
I used many different plugins (like Sapphire, Re:vision, Red Giant and others) but none are as simple or as effective as this little one plugin. Material I thought in the past as unusable shine in a way like never before. you can download a free demo mode. compared to other plugins it is cheap and the work it does is invaluable. You have to see it to believe it, cleans the picture while maintaining the sharpness. This plugin is a must, especially if you work in less than optimal light conditions where you need to boost the gain.
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