Copying the clips you have used in a Final Cut Pro X movie project, or archiving them isn’t simple. You can use the Finder, but then you need to memorise which clips exactly you’ll need to move. Doing it with an XML based copying app is a lot more efficient. Automatic Duck Media Copy 4.0 has been upgraded to work with Final Cut Pro X and it works great.
Apple’s Trackpad allows you to swipe and pinch on your Mac. With an iPad or iPhone these fine, small motions feel more or less natural, mostly because you can move the device. However, a Trackpad is another matter. Just like a traditional or Apple’s mouse you’re bound to run into painful problems at some point in time. Our shoulders and arm muscles are simply not made to make micro-movements with your hand in an awkwardly rotated position. To avoid the occasional pain from becoming a permanent agony you’ll need an ergonomic mouse. Until now, I personally used a Swiftpoint mouse, but an even better one seems to be the “DXT Wireless Mouse 2 (light click)” by City Ergonomics.
How clean an output do USB ports really deliver? AudioQuest seems to think the output isn’t as clean as it should be. If you want to listen to music and enjoy a noiseless experience with a good soundstage, you’ll need to suppress electronic signals that aren’t music. The AudioQuest Jitterbug does precisely that. Perhaps you’re sceptical. I know I was. I knew my Apogee Duet iPad/Mac has dedicated circuitry to get rid of digital/electronic noise, so what would a €49 USB stick be able to improve on that?
Several years ago, Apple had a professional-grade, server-based media asset management system (MAM). Unfortunately, Apple decided to kill Final Cut Server and instead incorporate some of its management functionality into Final Cut Pro X. Managing your media files from within an editor is not quite the same as managing them in a MAM, so the door was wide open to third party developers. One of them developed a nice alternative under the name KeyFlow Pro. It targets individual users as well as small workgroups.
I wasn’t aware it was that time of the year again: a new version of Painter. This venerable creative app is now officially called Painter 2016. If you thought after experiencing the last version it would be hard to come up with some new and exciting stuff… well, you were wrong. Painter 2016 has received some much needed interface improvements, but also new brushes and capabilities that once again will enable artists to have more fun and get closer to the analogue experience.
If you take photography seriously, even if you’re a camera RAW shooter out of principle, you won’t leave the house without a white balancing tool. Over the past ten years or so, I have reviewed a complete collection. I kept most of these contraptions, even the weirdest ones. Michael Tapes Design’s WhiBal white balance reference cards are amongst the most simple ones to work with. They don’t look weird either.
It’s always a good idea to carry extra battery capacity with you when you’re going out to shoot pictures or video. An extra battery pack may make the difference between bringing home that one unique shot, or running out of juice moments before it unfolds in front of your eyes. While they may not look elegant and won’t match luxury handbags, Solarmonkeys are excellent for the job. These solar panels have a 3500mAh battery built-in and come with daisy-chaining power capabilities: while you charge your camera, you can have the sun simultaneously charge the battery.