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Video

FxFactory Smooth review

Transitions are always a challenge in that you can’t always use a cut or a cross dissolve. In some cases, a cross dissolve isn’t even possible — for example, when you’re placing one short clip on top of a longer one with the latter containing the overall narrative. There’s a solution for all that: FxFactory’s Smooth.

Smooth is a series of title effects for Final Cut Pro X. It’s a Cineflare product, the developer whose KineticText we reviewed earlier. What Smooth does is offer you two related titles designated by an icon that shows what it does and a name that starts with a number and ends with “Begin” or “End”. The way it works is idiot-proof.

When you have a transition, you drag a Begin title to the end of the first clip — where you want the transition to start — and the End title to the start of the next clip — where you want the transition to end. And that’s it.

Because the transitions are basically short titles, you can use them with overlaying clips as well as true cuts — the ones that occur in the Timeline. There are a number of other things you can do with them as well. You can stretch the length of each part to lengthen the effect. The developers have made sure everything will keep working fine and you won’t break the design. The effects themselves are pretty much self-contained; what I mean by that is that you can’t change parameters except for the percentage of the effect you want to see applied.

There are plenty of different effects to choose from, from the basic move-over to complex rotate-along-an-axis-and-then-move ones. In addition, there are two Begin/End effects that you can fill in yourself entirely — a Basic one and a Complex one. Those allow you to change every parameter of the effect.

If you want to fade in your overlaid title for even more pizzazz than a normal dissolve would give you, you can do that as well — and that works very well with those overlaid short clips I talked about at the beginning of this review.

Just set the start of the End effect to opacity zero and the end of it to 100% and do the reverse for the Begin effect and you get a professional looking combined transition that is quickly applied.

Smooth is available in the FxFactory store.

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