Final Cut Pro: Previewing and Rendering Transitions

Final Cut Pro allows you to edit transitions, or create custom ones, in the transition editor. The program also allows you to view many transitions during playback in real time. There are several variables that will affect the previewing of transitions in real-time with Final Cut Pro. For example, the power of your computer and the type of transition you are applying will determine if you can view the transition in real-time or not. For transitions that can't be previewed in real-time, you'll need to render them. So, this simple how-to guide will instruct you on how to preview it in the transitions of Final Cut Pro.

What You Will Need

  • A computer with Final Cut Pro installed
  • Video footage to edit

Step 1: Determine the Render Status of Transitions

In Final Cut Pro, the render bar is located directly above the timeline. The upper region of the render bar is used to show the render status for video effects, while the lower region of the bar is used for audio effect items. Final Cut Pro will display the render status of clips or transitions in the timeline.

Final Cut Pro uses a color pattern system to display the render status of clips, effects and transitions in your timeline. If the render bar above an item is red in color, it needs to be rendered before it can be previewed. Green or yellow colors indicate that a transition can be previewed; however, performance of the preview may not be optimum. Finally, transitions that have a gray color bar require no rendering and should playback at full speed.

Step 2: Render a Single Transition

If some of your transitions or are  unable to be previewed in real-time, you can render all of them at once or only select a single transition to render. Generally speaking, rendering transitions is exactly the same as rendering clips with filters applied. In order to render a single transition in a sequence, select the transition on the timeline and then choose 'Sequence | Render Selection| Both'. Alternatively, you can press the command and 'R' keys simultaneously. This will render the transitions and effects between your clips.

Step 3: Render All Transitions that Need Rendering

You can also render only the transitions and effects in your timeline that cannot play in real-time. To do this, open the sequence on your timeline and then choose 'Sequence | Render All'. However, make sure that the 'Needs Render' is the only option selected on the submenu. Then, choose 'Sequence' again and then 'Render All | Both'.

Step 4: Render All Transitions and Effects in a Sequence

If you want to render all of the transitions and effects in sequence (regardless of the render status), you can do so. First, open the sequence in the timeline and then choose 'Sequence | Render All | Both'. However, this time make sure that all render options are selected in the submenu.

(Tip- With all the above rendering methods, you can cancel the rendering of your transitions or effects by clicking the 'Cancel' button in the status dialog or pressing the escape button on your keyboard.)

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