FxFactory’s Random to Custom Text makes titles really stand out

Luca Visual FX has released an FxFactory plug-in that enables you to use random rows and walls of text morphing into words you define. It offers 18 title effects for you to play with.

Random to Custom Text installs under the Titles tab in Final Cut Pro X 10.3.2. The 18 effects include 2D and 3D text. All effects come with a full set of parameters subdivided into sections for each title. The Basic Random to Custom title is a one-row sentence that cycles through random characters in order to end up with your own defined text in the middle of the animation. Towards the end your text is replaced again with a random sequence. The titles are relatively short but you can stretch them. I wouldn’t advise it, as they’re tuned for maximum effect.

Control over the way the title plays is comprehensive, i.e. you can change text direction, in/out mode, text animation, direction, speed, start offset, rotation, blur, and much more. Control over the text itself — fonts, colour, etc. — is managed by Final Cut Pro X’s built-in controls. All effects also have controls to shift colour channels separately during the animation, so even if you’re only going after fairly simple titles, you can still create something unique.

Random to Custom Text’s real power, however, comes from the ability to experiment with the complex titles in the set. Take for example the Custom Text Brick. That one is a fine example of what you can achieve with a bit more effort. For starters, the Text Brick is a resizable brick of text. Contrary to the wall, it has two on-screen controls: one controls the size and position of your focus text, while the other controls the random text.

Hovering over the centre of the Brick reveals the customisable text box. Contrary to the Text Wall, the custom text here is meant to be only a few words long, while the Text Wall could be a complete Shakespeare sonnet — well, perhaps a bit less — morphing from random to readable. The on-screen controls let you resize and format your text so it fits in with the rest — or jumps out. It’s your call.

The random text control lets you change the random text surrounding your own words. When the animation plays, you’ll see your text block morph into your own words, while the rest of the frame will be filled with animated random text, potentially cycling through colours as well. As I mentioned before, you can adjust almost everything about the effect. Custom Text Brick and Text Wall are my personal favourites, but they do pretty much fill up your frame completely.

Most of the time I bet you’ll be using a one-liner. That gives you about 15 effects/titles to choose from. Of those, three use 3D text. I’ve tried those as well and for me they don’t work: I just don’t see the appeal of 3D text in this sort of animation. In addition, I don’t like to lose time over tweaking 3D material, reflection, etc. For those of us who do, the specific 3D title effects in Random to Custom Text are well chosen for great results.

Random to Custom Text is available from the FxFactory store and costs around €46.50 ($49). For a limited time only, it’s available at $39.