Video editing systems will have problems. The process of pinpointing the problem is called “troubleshooting”.
Troubleshooting is the art of changing one thing at a time until the problem is pinpointed.
For example, you’re having a problem with a project. Try creating a brand new project. Does the problem persist? If the brand new project works fine, that pinpoints your existing project. Perhaps you should delete the render files, restore from the AutoSave Vault, or paste your clips into a new project. If the new project has the same symptoms, that points to a system problem.
If you are getting a General Error when opening a project, try renaming your Capture Scratch folder, and deleting your Rendered items folder. If it opens fine then, try relinking little by little.
If you’re having trouble capturing to an external drive, try capturing to the internal drive- if this works fine, this points to your external drive as the culprit. Having trouble capturing? Borrow another camera. Capture work fine now? It’s your camera. If not, it’s your system. Try your camera with a friend’s system. Still no work? It’s the camera. Try capturing with iMovie. If that works, you have proved your firewire cable is good. Either your camera is not compatible with FCP or there is some config problem with FCP.
See how that works? Change a variable, then test. When the problem goes away, you’ve pinpointed the problem.
With a weird or intermittent system problem, you can try trashing the Final Cut Pro prefs:
- In the Finder, go to ~/Library/Preferences—the tilde (~) represents your Home folder.
- Remove the “com.apple.finalcutpro.plist” file from the Preferences folder.
- Remove the “Final Cut Pro User Data” folder from the Preferences folder.
Remove receipts and reinstall Final Cut Pro
Another approach you might consider is reinstalling Final Cut Pro. To do this effectively, you need to remove the application and its receipts, then install Final Cut Pro and use Software Update to install additional updates. You don’t have to remove everything that was installed with Final Cut Pro. Follow the steps below to completely reinstall a fresh copy of Final Cut Pro. Note: Make sure that you have your installation discs and serial number handy before starting this.
To reinstall Final Cut Pro:
- Open the Applications folder.
- Drag the Final Cut Pro application to the Trash.
- Go to /Library/Receipts.
- In the Receipts folder, select the “FinalCutPro.pkg” file.
- Choose View > as List to view the contents in a list.
- Click the Date Modified column header so you can easily see all of the receipts that were installed at the same time as Final Cut Pro.
- Drag the FinalCutPro.pkg receipt to the Trash, as well as any other items that have the same modification date within 3 minutes of the FinalCutPro.pkg’s modification date.
- Click the Name column header to sort the list alphabetically.
- Drag any other receipts whose names begin with “Final Cut Pro” to the Trash.
- Insert your Final Cut Pro installation disc and install Final Cut Pro.
- When finished, use Software Update (under the Apple menu) to update your software to the latest version.
Confirm requirements and versions
- Check system requirements
Make sure that you haven’t overlooked any hardware aspect that’s required to use Final Cut Pro. You can view the system requirements on the Final Cut Pro Technical Specifications page.
- Update to the latest software versions
Choose Apple > Software Update and make sure that you have the most recent updates for your versions of Final Cut Pro, QuickTime, and other important system files. Installing the latest updates ensures that your software has the latest improvements and enhancements.
- Check compatibility and driver versions for third-party devices
If you’re using a third-party capture card, storage system, input device, or something else, check the support area on the manufacturer’s website to be sure that you’re using the latest version of the relevant driver or other software for your device. To see if your video device has been qualified for use with Final Cut Pro, check out the Final Cut Studio Device Qualification web page.
To keep a stable system, you have two choices:
1. Find a combo of OS version, FCP version, and QT version that works and stick with it. Once you find the magic combo that works, stick with it!!! Do not upgrade anything. This gives you a stable system that you can edit on for years and years.
2. Be a “bleeding edger”. Always upgrade to the latest everything (unless Apple specifically says not to) You will have more problems, but you can always lock your system and go to option #1 if you get tired of them. From time to time, you may enjoy new features, but things that used to work will break.
Here is a page with good troubleshooting info.