FCPXchange

A 'force relink' tool for Final Cut Pro X

Please Note!: FCPXchange has been updated to work with FCPX 10.1.2 and later. We have seen some success, and some failures, with this version, as in the past. Please let us know if it works, or doesn't work for you!

Background

If your Final Cut Pro X projects are showing missing media files, and relinking the original media doesn't seem to work, FCPXchange may be able to help. It is particularly designed for situations when the File > Relink files... command results in an 'Incompatible media' error, but you believe that the media really should be compatible. Often, FCPXchange will let you relink the media when FCPX wouldn't.

Pricing

For the moment, we have decided to make this beta version freely available. We may charge for later versions, but in the meantime you should expect to have support commensurate with the price you've paid! We do, however, welcome feedback and will do our best to help out where possible.

If you have a particular need for custom utilities, or for variations on this one, please get in touch and we can discuss pricing.

How it works

Please watch the introductory movie above. That's the best way to learn how to use FCPXchange.

This is how it works:

  • You have a project with the dreaded red boxes, indicating missing media.
  • You have a media file - if not the original, then perhaps a version in a different format - but Final Cut won't let you relink to it, because there are too many small differences.
  • Import that replacement file into the event, and put it in the timeline somewhere; for example, as a connected clip. (You can delete it later.) The project then knows about both the original media and the replacement. (We've even had reports that this alone can sometimes be sufficient to allow FCPX to relink the original media.)
  • Export the project as XML, using the File > Export Project XML... menu.
  • Open the XML using FCPXchange. It will show you a list of all the media in your project. You can then do what amounts to a 'global replace' in the timeline, substituting references to one clip with references to another.
  • Save the resulting XML, and re-import it into FCP, and you should have a duplicate project, with the missing media replaced with the new clip, but the edits preserved.
  • You can then delete the connected clip you added earlier.

Caveats:

This may not solve your problem! It works for many people, and not for others. It allows you to do some things Final Cut doesn't - for example, it will let you replace one clip with another of a different duration or framerate. It warns you that this may be a bad idea, but it will let you do it anyway.

How Final Cut Pro will handle any XML generated by FCPXchange depends on the nature of the changes!

FAQ

I used FCPXchange and Final Cut can't read the resulting XML

Please check whether it can read the original XML that you exported. When we've seen this problem, it is generally that FCPX generated XML which it could not, itself, accept! There's little we can do about that, sadly, except advise you to contact Apple.

Is this dangerous?

It shouldn't be, because you never overwrite your original project. You just save it as XML and load a second, modified copy alongside it. But your backups are your own responsibility!

What are the system requirements?

FCPXchange requires OS X 10.9 or later, and should work on XML exported from most versions of Final Cut Pro X.

Download

FCPXchange is available here:

FCPXchange-1.0-7.zip (beta)

This is a ZIP file, which will probably unzip automatically in your Downloads folder. Move it to your Applications folder or wherever convenient.

Because this does not come from the Mac App Store, depending on your security settings, you may need to right-click and choose 'Open' the first time you run it.

It comes with no warranties, express or implied. Use at your own risk. We hope you find it useful.