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Automatic Duck is back

RedGiant brings FCP editors and AE compositors together again By Ko Maruyama
Automatic Duck is back
RedGiant brings FCP editors and AE compositors together again

For a long time, there were three camps of desktop NLE editors.  Avid, Final Cut, PremierePro.  They didn?t talk to each other, and outside of Adobe's own PremierePro, they talk to After Effects.  Then, Automatic Duck came along to allow editors to bring their edits into a project that allowed After Effects artists to bring the edits and media into their timeline easily.  And now, after a brief hiatus, Automatic Duck Ximport AE allows you to bring your Final Cut X easily into After Effects with much more than just media and duration.


Back in the day, After Effects artists and Final Cut editors would have one term in common when sharing edits.  'DUCK IT' was a term for a shared edit.  

Although many editors are still using Final Cut 7 (or other NLEs), Final Cut X (10.1.2 and later) editors can get much more of their edit translated into After Effects using Automatic Duck Ximport.


By exporting an XML file from FinalCut Pro X, the new Automatic Duck Import AE plugin allows Adobe users to bring the XML composition directly into After Effects.  The new import plugin not only recognizes the in and out points of the various clips in the sequence, but the plugin supports much more.






Some of the key features that will excite both new and previous users of Automatic Duck include the plugin's ability to support a large array of third party plugins.  If you're using them in your edit, and you need to modify them in your composite, After Effects can easily see the parameters for several of your favorite plugins.  Some of the supported plugins include Magic Bullet Looks, Colorista, Cosmo, Mojo, Boris FX, Boris CC 9, and others.

Of course, Automatic Duck Ximport for After Effects has several standard FCP features that are supported.  Although the plugin doesn't support every single aspect of FCP X, it does carry over some of the most important elements for a compositor including alpha channels, compound comps, text layers, variable timing, and more that will save rebuilding the FCP edit in After Effects one clip at a time.

Automatic Duck Media Copy

As the name implies, Automatic Duck Media Copy is a quick way to collect up the sources in your sequences to a specific location.

This convenient application quickly identifies the source materials without requiring you to launch the NLE application.  You can 'collect' the media from multiple .aaf's or .xml's to a single destination with a simple 'drag and drop' operation.

This isn't just for editors who are transferring media to a compositor, but for anyone handing off source materials, or even just for the purpose of archiving.

It's a tool that editors will quickly see value in.  And, it's available for purchase or demo at Regiant.com


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Ko Maruyama is a freelance animator in Los Angeles.  In addition to working on film and broadcast animations, Ko teaches at Pasadena's Art Center College of Design - focusing on motion design.  When working, writing or testing software allows, you can find him lending a hand in the After Effects board and lurking among the Cinema4D, Visual Effects and Photoshop posts within the DMNForums.
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  • Automatic Duck is back by DMN Editorial at Sep. 28, 2015 12:54 am gmt (Rec'd 3)

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