Choosing Project Update Options

If you open an older project file, most necessary updates happen automatically. However, Final Cut Pro asks you to choose how you want to handle updating for several improved features such as scaling quality and HD color fidelity.

The table below shows what features were updated in specific versions of Final Cut Pro. All features that correspond to versions newer than your project must be updated. For example, if you open a project saved in Final Cut Pro 2, you need to update your project’s master-affiliate relationships (Final Cut Pro 4), scaling quality, HD color accuracy, and effects aspect ratio handling (Final Cut Pro 6). However, because a Final Cut Pro 2 project is newer than Final Cut Pro 1.2.5, DV color accuracy is not updated.

Final Cut Pro version
Updated features
Final Cut Pro 6
  • Nonmatching sequence clip aspect ratios: Render files for any sequence containing clips whose aspect ratio does not match the sequence aspect ratio are deleted.

  • Shift Fields filters: Incorrectly applied or missing Shift Fields filters are updated.

Final Cut Pro 5, Final Cut Express HD 3.5.1
  • Scaling quality: Best, Normal, Fastest

  • HD color accuracy: Any HD render files and HD sequence settings are converted to Rec. 709 color space.

Final Cut Pro 4, Final Cut Express 2
  • Master-affiliate relationships: Master-affiliate clip relationships aren’t directly updated when you open a project, but they can be applied at any time after you update a project.

Final Cut Pro 1.2.5
  • DV color accuracy: Any DV render files and DV sequence settings are converted to DV super-white levels (instead of RGB).

To update projects created in earlier versions of Final Cut Pro
  1. Open a project created using an earlier version of Final Cut Pro. A message tells you that the file’s format is outdated and asks if you want to update the format. Click Yes.

    Figure. Message indicating that a file's format is outdated.
  2. If a dialog appears with choices for update, choose from the options appropriate for the Final Cut Pro version that you’re updating from. For information about particular versions, see the sections listed below:

Updating Projects from Final Cut Pro 5 or Earlier

Here are some things to keep in mind when updating projects created with Final Cut Pro 5 or earlier versions.

Nonmatching Sequence Clip Aspect Ratios

When you open projects created in Final Cut Pro 5 or earlier, Final Cut Pro deletes existing render files for a sequence when the following are true:

  • Your project contains a sequence whose clips have a different aspect ratio than the sequence aspect ratio.

  • The sequence clips with nonmatching aspect ratios have a filter applied that affects the clip aspect ratio.

You can choose to delete the render files and continue to update your project or cancel the project update, preserving your existing render files. Deleting render files cannot be undone.

Shift Fields Filter

Projects created in versions earlier than Final Cut Pro 6 must be updated when they contain incorrect or missing applications of the Shift Fields filter. For example, if you have a Final Cut Pro 5 project where you edited a DV PAL clip into a standard definition (SD) PAL sequence, Final Cut Pro 5 did not use the Shift Fields filter for combining DV and SD, so Final Cut Pro 7 must update your project to add Shift Fields filters to clips when necessary.

Note: In cases where you removed a Shift Fields filter from an earlier Final Cut Pro project, Final Cut Pro 7 adds a new Shift Fields filter to any clip that needs one for proper playback.

Updating Projects from Final Cut Pro HD (version 4.5) or Earlier

Here are some things to keep in mind when updating projects created with Final Cut Pro HD (version 4.5) or earlier versions.

Scaling Quality

Projects created in Final Cut Pro HD (version 4.5) and earlier used the Fastest option. If you want higher quality motion transformations, you can choose Normal or Best. You can change this setting later in the Video Processing tab of each sequence in your project. For more information, see Rendering and Video Processing Settings.

Removing Existing Render Files

You have the option to delete render files when your motion transformations are updated. If you change the quality, it is a good idea to remove the existing render files to prevent mismatched scaling qualities in your sequences. Deleting the render files cannot be undone.

Improved Color Accuracy When Rendering High Definition Sequences

If you open an old project containing any rendered high definition sequences, or if you have any SD sequences containing HD source media, a dialog asks if you want to open the project and permanently delete the existing render files. If you want to preserve the existing render files, do not open the project in Final Cut Pro. Deleting the render files cannot be undone.

Note: If your project only refers to SD footage (ITU-R BT. 601), this dialog does not appear.

Updating Projects from Final Cut Pro 3.0 or Earlier

Clips in projects created with Final Cut Pro 4 and later have master-affiliate clip relationships that did not exist in earlier versions of Final Cut Pro. When an older project is imported into Final Cut Pro, this relationship is not automatically created, but you can manually update your project so that every sequence clip becomes affiliated with an appropriate master clip in the Browser. For more information about creating master clips, see About Using Master and Affiliate Clips.

To create master-affiliate relationships for clips in an older project
  • After you open and update the project, choose Tools > Create Master Clips.

    Master clips are created for every clip in every sequence, and placed in a bin called Master Clips for [Project Name]. When multiple clips refer to the same media file, only one master clip is created for those clips.

Updating Projects from Final Cut Pro 1.2.1

In Final Cut Pro 1.2.1 and earlier, sequences using the Apple DV-NTSC and DV-PAL codecs converted Y′CBCR video to RGB video whenever rendering was required. The conversion sometimes resulted in subtle but noticeable shifts in color or intensity. Starting with version 1.2.5, Final Cut Pro handled color space differently; however, old projects may still have links to older render files that exhibit the color and intensity shifts.

If you open an old project containing any rendered DV-NTSC or PAL sequences, a dialog asks if you want to open the project and permanently delete the existing render files:

  • Update sequences for improved color fidelity: This sets the maximum white value to Super-White in the Video Processing tab of the Sequence Settings and Sequence Preset Editor windows. All future rendering in the sequence is done in Y′CBCR in super-white.

    Note: If you select this option, the “Always Render in RGB” option in the Sequence Settings or Sequence Preset Editor window is not selected. For more information, see Rendering and Video Processing Settings.

  • Remove existing render files: This deletes all render files on the scratch disk for the sequences in this project. If you keep existing render files, the rendered media may have color or intensity shifts. You should keep existing render files if the quality difference is not a problem for your projects or if you need to get a project done fast and don’t want to rerender files. If you keep existing render files and want consistent-looking media, you’ll have to rerender the files because sequences in previously rendered media may have color or intensity shifts.

    Note: You cannot restore deleted render files with the Undo command.

Choosing these options will not rerender any material immediately. You need to open any affected sequences and render them manually.

If you upgrade a project or sequence created in Final Cut Pro 1.2.1 and the codec used for the sequence is not found by the system, the codec in the Sequence Settings is listed as “Unknown” and “Always Render in RGB” is selected in the Video Processing tab. If you want to render the sequence in Y′CBCR (YUV) color space, you need to change this manually.

To select YUV processing in a sequence with an unknown codec
  1. Choose Sequence > Settings, then click the General tab.

  2. In the QuickTime Video Settings section, choose DV-NTSC or DV-PAL (whichever you are using) from the compressor pop-up menu.

  3. Click the Video Processing tab, then select the YUV rendering option you want to use for your sequence.

    Unless you are doing high-end video processing, you will probably want to select Render in 8-bit YUV.

For more information about rendering in RGB and Y′CBCR color spaces, see Rendering and Video Processing Settings.

Note: These options are available for codecs that support Y′CBCR color space.