Experiencing issues working with Arri Alexa footage in FCP X? If you are looking for a smooth way to edit Arri Alexa footage in FCP X, you are in the right place. This thread displays a workaround to transcode Alexa footage to ProRes 422 codec for use in FCP X with optimum performance.
ARRI ALEXA is one of the hottest cameras in high-end television production. It features a 3392 x 2200 pixel Super 35mm-sized CMOS sensor using Bayer pattern color filtering. The recording mechanism can generate images in either the 2880 x 1620 ARRIRAW format or in any flavor of 1920 x 1080 Apple ProRes.
ProRes is called the Shoot to Edit option, which has been proven to be a high quality and robust video format that is widely used in the industry today. In addition to ProRes options, the ALEXA also has an uncompressed video output, but we believe many productions will choose to record in ProRes directly in the camera for a simple editing workflow. If for whatever reason you’ve recorded in ARRIRAW format and run into issues working with Arri Alexa footage in FCP X, we would recommend transcoding them to ProRes 422 codec first, and it will ensure a very smooth Alexa workflow in FCP X. Here is a quick guide for how to convert Arri Alexa footage to ProRes 422 for importing into FCP X fluently.
Here’s what you need
HD Video Converter for Mac
[Guide] How can I transcode Arri Alexa footage to ProRes 422 for FCP X editing?
Download, install and run HD Video Converter for Mac, then follow these steps:
Step 1: Run HD Video Converter for Mac as a professional Arri Alexa footage to ProRes 422 Converter. When its main interface comes up, click ‘Add File’ to load source video to it.
Step 2: Select ‘Apple ProRes 422 (*.mov)’ as output format for opening with FCP X
From the ‘Profile’ list, move to ‘Final Cut Pro’ catalogue, and select ‘Apple ProRes 422 (*.mov)’ as target format. Apple ProRes is the best suited editing codec for FCP X. When loading them into Final Cut Pro X, you needn’t wait for a long time for rendering. To produce smaller files, you can select ‘Apple ProRes 422 (LT) (*.mov) as target format.
Important: If you’ve loaded a number of video clips to do batch conversion, please do remember ticking off ‘Apply to All’ option before you start.
Step 3: Adjust video and audio settings (for advanced users)
If necessary, you can click ‘Settings’ button and go to ‘Profiles Settings’ panel to modify video and audio settings like video encoder, resolution, video bit rate, frame rate, aspect ratio, audio encoder, sample rate, audio bit rate, and audio channels. 3D settings are also available.
Step 4: Click ‘Convert’ to start Arri Alexa footage to ProRes conversion.
Step 5: Click ‘Open Folder’ to get generated ProRes 422 QuickTime files for transferring and editing in Final Cut Pro X with optimum performance.
To import the transcoded files into Final Cut Pro X, navigate to File > Import > Media. In the window that comes up select your transcoded ProRes clips. DO NOT check “Create Optimized Media” OR “Create Proxy Media”. Both of these check boxes are unnecessary because we already converted the media to ProRes which means Final Cut Pro X can use the footage without “optimizing” it. Checking this box would create a redundant and time consuming second transcode of your footage.
You’re now ready to edit!
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