Replacing ProRes with R3D in FCPX
Are you one of those people that have tried using R3Ds directly on the timeline and can’t seem to get the REDRAW playback to be smooth no matter what you do? I know I am. Ever since RED released the plugin for FCPX, I’ve tried everything to get smoother playback. Upgraded to a newer computer, got a Rocket-X in a thunderbolt case, even got a RAIDed thunderbolt drive. I figured I must be doing something wrong and I decided to just rely on my trusty ProResLT workflow; files that I always request from the DIT. Once I’m done with offline, I would XML out to Resolve then grade there. If I need to composite, I’d go to After Effects. Then finally, I would go back to FCPX to conform and restripe the audio with the graded and onlined footage.
Yeah, I know. That is a long way to finish.
Anyway, I came across this workflow because some of my clips went offline. When I tried to relink, I accidentally selected the folder which contained the RAW clips (I didn’t noticed because I was in a hurry :D). When the clips came back online, I noticed that my laptop was running slower than usual. The timeline needed rendering. I was trying to figure out why this was happening. I did the usual quit FCPX and start it back up. Still problematic. Rebooted and tried again. Still no fish. I thought maybe a plugin was causing this. So I went to the inspector, and that’s when I noticed the resolution of the file. IT WAS 5K. I checked Codecs and there it was… REDcode 11:1. I thought it was a bug since the workflows that I’ve seen on the interwebs always went – Import R3D into Event, then make the optimized/proxy media once they’re in. I decided to test by relinking the remaining clips in the project. It worked!
Below is a tutorial I made to share my findings:
Since it bogged down my laptop, I tried relinking back to ProRes. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as the ProRes to R3D (This required that I relink the clips one at a time O_O). After that painstaking process, I was editing smooth as butter again. At least, now I have another workflow that I can integrate when I want to deliver higher quality finish if I don’t need going to another software. Hope it helps you in yours.
Here’s the finished video using the above workflow, completely edited and graded in FCPX: