Final Cut Pro: My free Move plugin

Here is my next plugin: A generator that takes a clip and animates it from one place to another. It defaults to moving the clip from off the bottom of the canvas to off the top.

I came up with this when creating closing credits for a film partially funded by the Arts Council of England (using another of my plugins: Closing Credits). One of the conditions of funding was that their logo appears during the end credits scroll. Oddly enough, it is not straightforward to animate objects in Final Cut to move at specific speeds.

move_01

Download Alex4D Move
Download: Alex4D Move.

Copy the ‘Alex4D Move 1.01.fcfcc’ file into one of two places on your computer:

Your Startup HD/Library/Application Support/Final Cut Pro System Support/Plugins
or
Your Startup HD/Users/your name/Library/Preferences/Final Cut Pro User Data/Plugins/

(Your Startup HD/Users/your name/Library/Application Support/Final Cut Express Support/Plugins for Final Cut Express users)

Restart Final Cut, and you’ll see the generator in the ‘Animate’ section of ‘Video Generators’

Here’s a long (20 minute) video showing how it works:

Here are some magic numbers for entering into the dimensions values for video clips:

NTSC: 640 wide by 480 high
NTSC widescreen: 853 wide by 480 high (?)
PAL: 768 wide by 576 high
PAL widescreen: 1024 by 576
720p: 1280 by 720
1080p: 1920 by 1080

Visit my Final Cut home for more plugins and tips
finalcuthomethumbnail

If you want a clip to move smoothly and then stop, use the ‘Keyframe % Complete’ animation method. You can then set a value of 0 at the start of the generator, and 50 when you want the image to stop moving (if you want the clip to end up halfway across the screen). Control-click the second keyframe in the graph to smooth it so that the image smoothly slows down to a stop:

Getting the clip to move at the same speed as something else will take some trial and error. You could add some keyframes between 0 and 50 that produces a straight line segment of the animation graph which makes the clip move at a constant speed. The angle of the straight line defines the speed.

You could duplicate a copy of the generator and use the fixed speed method to animate, and use the position of the copy to help set the keyframes.

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36 comments
  1. great though the video could be a bit larger to see what you are doing in it. Thanks, Peter

  2. Proffit said:

    Wow, this is a great plug-in! Thanks.

  3. Mark said:

    Fantastic! This is really useful. It also works in Final Cut Express 4. Keep on making these plugins, they’re better than most by far.

  4. Sean Taylor said:

    Love your stuff man…This is my first time checking out your site…Keep me in the loop for new tip and tricks… I love them…!!!

  5. VMarv said:

    I am so glad I found this plug-in this morning! Been trying to figure this out for months! Thank you for all your help!

  6. Nathan said:

    The only question I have is how did you do the original scrolling credits before you put the logo in? And how did you get it to be 50 pixels/per second?
    You mention in the video its tricky but then dont explain how it done. Any help here would be appreciated. Sorry in advance if its obvious 🙂

    Nathan

  7. Mark Pigott said:

    Having problems with pre-render viewing in FCP.
    Here are my settings
    2400×600 30fps progressive proRes custom settings.

    My test image is 2179×1722 picture.

    When i enter into 4DMove (unrendered)
    my scrubbed image is bigger than 100% of the viewer

    Here is the test settings for 4DMove
    width 2179
    height 1722
    clip start 0
    scale 100
    move left to right
    start point 0,480
    end point 0,-480
    anim method from in to out (10 second clip)
    % complete 100%
    speed 50pps

    simple math dictates that this image would not fill the
    horizontal as the canvas is 2400px wide
    and the image us 2179px wide.

    I have to render this effect to see the correct scaling;
    and I wonder if this is due to the non-standard movie
    settings I use?

    • Alex said:

      Are you using square pixels in both your sequence and clip?

      You can enter any size for your clip and Move will attempt to display your clip at that size.

      When you say this happens when pre-rendering, is the size different when you render?

  8. Mark Pigott said:

    It is all square pixels.
    Yes the scale in scrub (pre-render on the RED timeline)
    is always larger than the rendered (blue) timeline.

    Another test I used was an image that was 800×618.
    The rendered size is correct, but prior to rendering
    in scrub mode the image is about double the size it should be.

    • Alex said:

      I think that this is an oversight in my programming. It’ll take me a while to spot the coding problem and fix it. Thanks for pointing it out.

  9. Mark Pigott said:

    Also, if you set up the custom settings
    at 2400×600, 30fps, progressive, square pixels
    you will notice that you will get different result
    on render if you play with
    sequence settings/render control/ resolution
    and set the quality for 100%, 50%, 25% etc.

    if you set the render to 50% the size will double
    and at 25% the image will quadruple.

    As a control I placed the clip on the timeline without
    theAlex4D move and the size is not dependant on the
    quality setting- it just looks more pixelated-which is
    to be expected at these settings.

    • Alex said:

      Thanks for the info.

      I’ll produce a new version tomorrow and send you it via email to see if I’ve fixed the problem.

  10. Monique said:

    An absolutely necessary and useful plugin, thanks SO much!! (This is coming from a person who wouldn’t have a clue how to make/create a plugin!) Only problem I had was finding out my ‘frame size’ as I am using Final Cut Express and it has no ‘frame size’ indicator or column I can open.

    • Alex said:

      Thanks for trying the plugin on Final Cut Express. As well as not owning a copy, I’ve never seen it running.

      As regards finding the dimensions of a clip or still, have you tried control-clicking a column heading in the Browser’s list view? Does ‘Size’ appear as an optional column heading that you can choose to display?

      If not, you can discover the dimensions of stills using the Finder. Select the still in the browser, choose ‘Reveal in Finder’ from the View menu. Choose ‘Get Info’ from the File menu. The dimensions of the still appear in the ‘More Info’ panel of the window that appears.

  11. Mate – thanks for this… fantastic. Well done

  12. jeremy hugues said:

    Dear Alex,

    Many many thanks.
    I hope to be able to share some of my work if I can achieve something like you do someday.
    1000 mercis.

    jeremy

  13. jeremy hugues said:

    Hello Alex,

    Thanks for your precious work you share with all of us.
    I have a problem with my first try of both the Move plugin and Closing Credits.
    Before rendering all works nicely on the timeline and in the canevas. But after rendering, the objects from the move plug in are all pushed upwards.
    It was working before with two or three. Now I have 13 video tracks. Is that the reason? I can send a screen shot to show you. Thanks in advance.

    • jeremy hugues said:

      Alex,

      More info. The problems comes only from the “Move” plug-n and even with only 3 video tracks. Any hint? Thanks

  14. jeremy hugues said:

    Alex,

    OK, I installed your plugin on a friend Imac and now it works. I don’t know what was the problem, but it works on FCP 5,06 and OS 10,6,2
    Best regards

  15. Max said:

    What a wonderful tool. It adds a great deal of value to any video production. That said, i have been struglling to add a logo to the closing credit scroll ( Alex 4D + Move ). The generated videos function well separately but i cannot get them to synch. The logo actually moves a lot slower than the credits, although the speed on both is set to 50 pix/sec.

    ProRes 1920×1080 + Alex4D Move + Alex4D Closing Credits.

  16. Catalin said:

    Hi Alex,

    Superb plugin. I used it with your end credits plugin. Thanks a lot. However, when rendering this plugin in FCP7, I get an FX script error, and it does not render.

    The end credits plugin renders without a problem, but I have to add two logos. any idea?

  17. Martin said:

    Hi Alex,

    thanks a lot for this brilliant tool.
    As I use it, the idea rise to have the moving clip on the left side beside the text.
    Is this possible?
    Can you please explain how?
    Thanks, Martin

  18. Richard said:

    I’m trying to use the credit software with my credits in FCP 7.0 but it stops at 1 minute 59 seconds and won’t finish the text in the clip. Is there a 2 minute limit?

    • Alex said:

      Generators default to having a maximum length of two minutes. To change this, set the duration before you add it to your sequence. Create a new instance of ‘Alex4D Move’ (by picking it from the pop-up menu in the Viewer, or double-clicking it in the Effects window), edit the duration in the top-left of the Viewer window to ’00:20:00:00′ to make the maximum duration 20 minutes. If you don’t want the initial duration to be that much, set the out point in the viewer so the duration is less before adding the generator to the timeline.

  19. Dominike said:

    Question:

    What if I need to have no longer than 1 min of credits, how can I figure out the speed to get in timing the logos since at 50 pixel speed it ends up behind 1,20 sec ?

    Thanks

    • Alex said:

      If your destination is PAL broadcast and 50 pixels per second is too slow, try 100 pixels per second. If you choose a speed between 50 and 100 pixels, you are more likely to get flickering when shown on an interlaced monitor.

      If you are distributing via the web, you can use any speed (including animating ‘From in to out’ – the move will take the duration of the clip on the timeline).

  20. GottaRun said:

    Love this and the scrolling credits too.
    How do you pause the rolling credits when the logo is at the top of the screen?

  21. Todd said:

    This may be a very simple answer that I’m overlooking, but at the end of the credit bed, how can I slow the scroll to a smooth stop?

    Thanks very much for this plugin btw, it has been a true lifesaver.

    • Alex said:

      I’ve added a little more text and a picture to the post to give you an idea how to slow down and stop a clip.

      • Todd said:

        Thanks Alex! Wish there were a way to do it with the Speed (pixels/sec) Animation Method as it’s smoother and easier to control, but I’ll figure it out.

  22. laroby said:

    thank you very much. that’s really useful. thanx again.

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