Jul 31

Make Final Cut Pro X work with Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S Videos

The Sony Alpha a7S Mirrorless Digital Camera features a full-frame 12.2MP Exmor CMOS sensor and BIONZ X image processor to enable notable video and still image quality with an expansive dynamic range, low noise, and extended sensitivity to ISO 409600. Beyond its still image performance, the a7S is also quite adept in regard to recording video. It is able to output uncompressed 4:2:2 UHD 4K video to an optional external recorder over HDMI, as well as record full HD 1080p video in the high-quality XAVC S format at 50 Mbps in multiple frame rates. Sound can be recorded in the AAC/Linear PCM format via the internal stereo microphone, with a built-in headphone jack for on-board monitoring, or via an external microphone.

I was chosen to participate in a short film contest. I used my new Sony Alpha a7S and had 55 hours’ recordings and want to produce a short film. I absolutely loved this camera. Beautiful footage. Very easy to use, forgiving for us, even in low light. The richness and saturation we achieved was beautiful, and I saw much the same in the other projects. In my opinion, Sony Alpha a7S is a great Ultra HD starter camera, reality show camera, a film school camera, a documentary camera – anywhere ease of use and set up time is critical, or following quickly unfolding action.

However, the recordings from Sony Alpha a7S are in XAVC S format with 1080p resolution. I now would like to edit them on the Final Cut Pro X so that I can share these interesting videos with my friends through internet or on YouTube. But the problem is, my FCP X has no ability to edit such high definition files, I want to find some apps can import the Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S to FCP X, but unfornately I found nothing on the internet.

Searched widely and further, I got some tech support from some guys but not from Apple. Sony Alpha a7S’s XAVC S codec video is MP4 format. Final Cut Pro support MP4 video importing although, the XAVC S video codec is a new one. Final Cut Pro even the latest FCP X doesn’t support Sony XAVC S MP4 well. To import and edit Sony Alpha a7S footage in FCP X without any problem, one possible solution is to convert Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S to ProRes codec for FCP X on Mac.

Now I share the guide with you how to convert  Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S footage to Final Cut Pro friendly format using UFUSoft XAVC Video Converter for Mac. With it, you can effortlessly transcode XAVC-S encoded MP4 ootage from Sony Alpha a7S for smoothly importing and editing in various non-linear editing systems (NLE), including FCP X, FCP7, FCP 6.

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How to Make Final Cut Pro X work with Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S Videos?

To be able to import Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S MP4 to FCP X for editing, you’ll need to convert XAVC S to QuickTime using the Sony XAVC Converter for Mac we mentioned above. Follow these steps:

1. Import Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S MP4 files

From the main interface, click ‘Add Video’ or ‘Add from folder’ icon to load XAVC S footage directly from your Sony Alpha a7S camera or from a card reader or from a achieved folder on your HDD that contains your media.

play convert XAVC or XAVC S files

2. Choose output format

From Format bar, choose ‘Final Cut Pro’ > ‘Apple ProRes 422(*.mov)’ as output format for Final Cut Pro X or FCP 7/6.

play convert XAVC or XAVC S files

3. Start rewrapping Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S MP4 to ProRes 422 for FCP X
When ready, click ‘Convert’ to start encoding Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S clips to Apple ProRes 422 for extending editing with Final Cut Pro X or Final Cut Pro 6/7.

4. Find generated QuickTime files
When the conversion is done, click ‘Open’ to locate the generated ProRes 422 QuickTime files for using in Final Cut Pro X. Apple ProRes 422 is FCP’s native format, therefore, the Sony Alpha a7S XAVC S files transcoded to this codec do not require any rendering while ingesting to FCP X or FCP 7/6.

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