Apple to launch Final Cut Pro 3 for OS X

Nine months after Apple Computer Inc. launched its long-awaited OS X operating system, and nearly three months after launching the OS X version 10.1 upgrade, Apple is set to release a version of its own high-end video editing software, Final Cut Pro, for the operating system.

Apple will release Final Cut Pro 3 for Mac OS 9 and OS X by the end of this month, the company announced Tuesday. Final Cut Pro 3 will also introduce a new offline storage format called OfflineRT, which can hold up to five times as much footage per gigabyte as the DV (digital video) format, and new color-correction tools previously available only in more expensive video editing suites, Apple said in a statement.

OfflineRT is designed for mobile video editing, storing more than 40 minutes of video per gigabyte of drive space. Using a FireWire connection, users can transfer DV footage to OfflineRT on the fly and store more than 24 hours of video on the hard drive of a PowerBook, Apple said.

Final Cut Pro 3 will also include a voice-over tool, auto-save functions, new three-dimensional titling and effects, and PeakDV audio editing tools, Apple said.

Third-party software applications, including Microsoft Corp.'s Office and Adobe Systems Inc.'s Illustrator, are already available for OS X. Final Cut Pro 3 will be available through Apple's online store and authorized resellers for US$999. Registered Final Cut Pro users can upgrade to the software for $299. More information can be found at http://www.apple.com/finalcutpro/.

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