Transitioning from FCP7 to Adobe Premiere CCFinal Cut Pro 7 had an amazing run as one of the standards in NLE systems, however the time is fast approaching where this now legacy software may need to start transitioning out of the limelight.  This quick guide will focus on Adobe Premiere Pro CC, as the transition from the users perspective is a smoother transition compared to FCPX or AVID.

To import an existing project from Final Cut Pro 7 to Premiere is a relatively straightforward process.  For the smoothest transition from a project from FCP7 to Premiere CC, you’ll want to keep the project to a minimum.  This is not always possible when importing an older project, so there are things to look out for.   For massive projects with lots of effects, and colour corrections, etc it may be best to keep FCP7 on systems to be able to open and view past projects, as the migration isn’t complete free of roadblocks.

What will import successfully:

  • Media from within a project
  • In and out points of clips, and their relative location on the timeline
  • basic cuts
  • dissolves
  • basic audio levels however they will most likely need to be adjusted
  • text content (don’t count on formatting, and fonts to transition smoothly)

What won’t transition:

  • Text formatting and placement
  • Not all fonts will transition properly
  • FCP effects
  • colour corrections
  • anything beyond basic transitions won’t migrate over, or may be converted to a similar transition within Premiere
  • timing changes to clips and/or timeline
  • audio effects
  1. Open the FCP7 project you’d like to import into Premiere If you’d like to import the entire content of a project simply select File — export XML.  If you want more control of what is brought over, highlight (select) specific media, sequences, etc, that you want exported, then export XML.
  2. An export XML dialog box will appear, you’ll want to select the latest Apple XML interchange for the best compatibility with the newest version of Premiere.
  3. Once the XML is saved, open Premiere Pro and import the XML
  4. Once imported Premiere will also import a translation report.  This report is very helpful in showing what was brought over successfully, and what may need some extra attention. *Note this report won’t always catch everything, make sure to scrub through the timeline and verify everything is in the right order.

Adobe went a step further and gives users the option to switch keyboard shortcuts from the default Premiere Pro settings to Final Cut Pro 7 shortcuts.  The ability to do this is very helpful in the transitioning of users from Final Cut Pro 7 to Premiere.

To change the keyboard, select Premiere Pro from the toolbar, and select keyboard shortcuts.

Transitioning from FCP7 to Adobe Premiere CC

Transitioning from FCP7 to Adobe Premiere CC

From the Dialog box select Final Cut Pro 7

As we migrate away let us not forget the wonder and ease of use that was FCP7. It changed the post production world for the better, offering a cheaper alternative to the AVID, and forced Adobe to step up their game with their NLE system. It was so loved that 5 years after it was declared end of life, post houses, film schools, and freelancers are still swearing by it.  However lack of updates, a dated UI, and an inability to background render show that it’s nearly time to say goodbye.

Happy editing on whatever NLE you decide to transition too.