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Question: What's minimal laptop for FCP X?

My 2012 MB Pro is heavier than I want to lug around. I can't afford to buy a new MB Pro, but I imagine anything newer than mine is lighter and faster. Any recommendations?

MacBook Pro (15-inch Mid 2012), macOS Sierra (10.12.6), iTunes-current

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Mar 13, 2018 11:45 AM in response to Gerret Warner In response to Gerret Warner

I guess it depends on how much editing you plan to do with it.


For example, I get away with my 2011 MacBook Air for just quickly cutting GoPro footage together. Max 10 minutes, few title overlays, little bit of color correction. Nothing intense, but it does the job with no issues.

Mar 13, 2018 11:45 AM

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Mar 13, 2018 1:01 PM in response to Gerret Warner In response to Gerret Warner

3D Text elements have their own requirement. On desktops, that means at least 1GB of vRAM (I would suggest at least 2). I don't know how that translates for laptops (most of which use "shared" video RAM with regular RAM). 16GB RAM is probably a good minimum. With USB3, you can save money by planning for external SSD "work" drives and standard storage drives as opposed to an internal SSD.


It simply comes down to: what do you want to be able to do... for the next four years. Factor in: how much things have changed in the LAST four years. A brand new Mac sold today with sufficient resources might be expected to last up to 6-8 years (keeping up with software updates). I think people using the top of the line 2011 machines are still hanging in, but the next release of macOS (and whatever version of FCPX that goes with it) may leave them behind... It's just that new and improved software always needs faster and more (minimum) resources.


FCPX 10.4 is very nice. It should be serviceable without upgrading for a relatively long time to come [my oldest "living" mac is 17 years old now]. If you outfit whatever Mac you buy for today's FCPX, you could simply use the minimum requirements as your "shopping" guideline.


I love my Macs (I've bought 8 of them over the past 30+ years [approximately 1 every four years on average...]). Macs are pricey... Love hurts 😉

Mar 13, 2018 1:01 PM

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Mar 17, 2018 6:09 AM in response to Alchroma In response to Alchroma

Thanks everyone. All good advice. I don't expect to do compositing or much in the way of effects since I haven't in the last 30 years. Then again, I'm just getting to know FCPX and what it can do so who knows. I'd love to be able to carry around and edit on a MacBook Air but it seems too limited for anything but what tmlim does. My 2012 MBP/16GB of RAM has served me well. Maybe I'll stay with it (and SIerra) for awhile.
Thank again for ideas.

Mar 17, 2018 6:09 AM

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Question: What's minimal laptop for FCP X?