Apple updated Final Cut Pro X today, adding GPU-acceleration support tuned for the forthcoming Mac Pro and Pro Display XDR.
The latest Final Cut Pro, aka v10.4.7, has an updated implementation of Metal, Apple’s framework for communicating directly with GPUs, that it said improves performance across “a wide range” of Metal-compatible Macs, while specifically leveraging the high-end hardware inside the new Mac Pro and Apple Pro Display XDR.
Metal Health Will Drive Your Mac
The new Metal engine improves playback and accelerates rendering, real-time effects and exporting on Metal-compatible systems, Apple said, benchmarking performance at up to 20 percent faster on the 15-inch MacBook Pro and up to 35 percent faster on the iMac Pro.
The Mac Pro specifically supports multiple GPUs and up to 28 CPU cores, speeding rendering by up to 2.9x and transcoding by as much as 3.2x compared to the previous Mac Pro, which maxed out at 12 cores. And the optional Afterburner card, geared toward editors working with demanding ProRes and ProRes Raw formats, allows simultaneous playback of up to 16 streams of 4K ProRes 422 or up to three streams of 8K ProRes Raw, Apple said.
More Editorial Enhancements
Apple said Final Cut Pro editors using a Mac Pro can connect to three Pro Display XDRs simultaneously, using two for the Final Cut interface and another as a reference monitor. The new Final Cut Pro X also enables the Sidecar feature in MacOS Catalina, which also rolled out today, that allows an iPad to be used as a second display with a desktop or notebook Mac — a nifty way to make dual-screen editing more portable.
Other updates to Final Cut Pro 10.4.7 include improved color-mask and range-isolation tools for HDR color-grading; tone-mapping from HDR to SDR for display via MacOS Catalina; and the ability to select from internal or external GPUs for graphics processing.
Motion and Compressor got updates today that feature the same updated Metal engine, Apple said.
Final Cut Pro remains a $300 purchase for new users; Motion and Compressor are $50 each. Updates are free for existing users.