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Dual Viewers In Final Cut Pro X

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Final Cut Pro X 10.0.6 introduces Dual Viewers. We have the original Viewer as always. But we now have an Event Browser Viewer. This viewer window is specific to media in the Event Browser and is pretty nice. Let’s go through it briefly.

Step 1 - Project Setup

I’ll open a Project and in the Event Library select an event. From the Window menu I’ll select Show Event Viewer, or Control-Option-3. Handy to remember since making the Event Viewer the active pane is Command-Option-3, and making the regular Viewer the active pane is Command-3

Show Event Viewer.

Step 2 - Display Options

This new Event Viewer is identical to the regular Viewer mostly. First it only displays what is selected in the Event Browser. When the Event Viewer is showing, the regular Viewer only shows what is in the Timeline. The top left shows an Event icon and the name of the clip it is displaying. The top right has the zoom menu and display options menu just like the regular Viewer. The menu items are all exactly the same, with the exception of keyboard shortcuts. There are none for these items in the Event Viewer. This menu lets you Show/Hide Scopes, Angles, Fields, which Channels to display, and the tile/action safe overlay. Yes, you can see Scopes and Angles. Thus both the Event Viewer and the Viewer can be showing scopes and angles or not independently of each other. A great way to compare shots amongst other uses.

New event Viewer.

Step 3 - New Scope Option

This feature is also available in both Viewers. When I go to the display menu and select Show Scopes, I get the video scope pane on the left half, and the media image on the right half of the Event Viewer pane, as expected. It has its own display options menu, just like in the Viewer. But there’s one new option I think many editors will love. No matter which scope you have active, towards the bottom of this menu is an option titled “Vertical Layout”. This is wonderful, too. It splits the pane horizontally, placing the media image on top and the scopes on the bottom of the Event Viewer pane. I can even grab the line between the two and dynamically resize them together inside the Event Viewer pane. This really lets the waveform scope shine, to! As a trainer my explanations about how the waveform scope is a direct overly just got much easier, I can place one on top of the other. Plus it just makes in many arrangements for a more cleaner, useful scope display.

Vertical layout.

Step 4 - Control Options

There are no Transform tools inside the Event Viewer as there are in the regular Viewer. If you want to do transformations (position, rotation, scale, crop, etc.) then right-click the clip in the Browser and chose Open In Timeline, then work from the regular Viewer.

There are the 3 transport buttons at the bottom center of the Event Viewer. Jump to start, jump to end, and play. In addition to the Full Screen button in the bottom right corner. You can playback full screen in the Event Viewer just like you can in the regular Viewer.

Playback full screen.

Step 5 - Dual Monitors

I guess I should mention how the Event Browser works with dual monitors. If you go to the Window menu and select Show Viewer On Second Display, and you open or already have active the Event Viewer, it will appear on the secondary display along side the regular Viewer.


With FCP X 10.0.6 we now have the dual viewer system many have been asking for. And the implementation is as creative and functional and easy as all of the other functions in FCP X. Having two viewers, and with them being as flexible as they are, will really improve an already amazing video editing app.

Check out our Final Cut Pro: Overview and Quick Start Guide course!

Ben Balser

Ben Balser | Articles by this author

Ben Balser studied educational psychology at Loyola University, and after retiring from a 20+ year IT career, now produces, consults, teaches, and rents equipment for media production as a full time job. As an Apple Certified Master Trainer, he ran the Louisiana Cajun Cutters FCP user group for 8 years, taught post-production at Louisiana State University and has lead their annual teen filmmaking bootcamp. He teaches currently for AATC facilities across the USA and for The Orchard Solutions. He has consulted for higher education, government, broadcast and private production facilities.


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