I searched around and I have not come across a good answer. What does FCP have that Motion5 does not? I have been looking at the two and they look relatively the same. Here is some of what I am doing/care about:

I love YouTube, I want to become a video maker. I want to do productions from Minecraft ExplodingTNT to Smosh to Productions and more... I need a video editor to make up for iMovie because I am sick of the export errors, slowness, and overall limitations of it. My budget is low so I don't really want to get FCP, Avid, or Adobe Production Suite until I can get the money to get them. I am also looking into 3d stuff like Cinima 4D and Autodesk Entertainment Creation Suite (or a few of the products in that suite) but that can be for another time. I am also experienced in audio creation and editing. I have Ableton and am planning to get more software (if that is helpful to know). Really, I want to know if Motion is all that is needed for a pretty experienced, but still new person to video creation. Or if I should go strait to the big stuff.

I still want to know some big differences regardless of my needs.

If I did something wrong or you want more information on something, feel free to leave a comment because I am new to AVP.

  • Well, FCP is a NL Editing software and Motion is a motion graphics and compositing software. So there are lots of features that one has and the other has not. Actually, all the software you are asking about has a similar situation. What aspects of video creation are you really interested in?
    – Inan
    Commented Jan 14, 2013 at 10:43
  • @InanBerbatov Just look at all the YouTube channels I gave, that is all of the stuff I want to do (I know it is a lot)
    – b2550
    Commented Jan 15, 2013 at 1:12
  • How did your workflow of using Motion for simple video editing workout? I am considering the same things as you. Thanks
    – user4490
    Commented Aug 7, 2013 at 15:11

1 Answer 1


There's actually a big difference between the two. If you're on a budget and don't mind that editing video is not as straight forward, then Motion is actually not a bad route to take.

Final Cut allows you to use things you've created in Motion as graphical templates. Motion in and of itself is a 2D(/3D) animation app, it wasn't made for video editing.

So, although you can edit video in Motion, doesn't mean it's very comfortable. For instance, you can just press a shortcut to render your timeline in Proxy, High Quality format. If you'd do the same thing in Motion, you would have to encode the material by yourself and tell Motion manually to use the Proxy's instead of the original material.

Final Cut also has some media management tools that allow you to quickly find the footage you want to edit. So if you imported tons of clips, it's easier to find a particular clip in FCP than in M5.

Both apps work well together, but in itself, Motion wasn't made to edit video. If you come from iWork. Editing in Final Cut Pro is almost equal (if not the same).

I can't talk about Avid, Premiere, but they work similarly to the "old" way of editing video, where the timeline is static. When there is a clip deleted between two clips, they don't ripple together. They stay at their current position. Some people prefer to edit that way. Personally I can't see myself going back to that way of editing, it is simply too slow.

Now in regards to 3D… Motion is a 2D motion graphics application. It can do 3D too, but it misses most features "real" 3D apps have like fluid or explosion calculations of material. Material can also have a real material. So the app knows that wood explodes differently from glass. If you are new in 3D animation and just want to tip your toes in, go for Blender. It is hard to learn, though, because it's free, there are tons of tutorials available online to get you quick up and running.

After Effects is the industry leader in motion graphics. It is said that nothing can't be done in After Effects. Motion tries to an After Effects. It is also said that Motion can do everything that After Effects can, but, again, with more effort.

As a summary. If you're on a budget and need a great 2D motion graphics app, Motion is not a bad choice. It works well together with Final Cut Pro, a video editing app that is similar to iMovie. Though 3D animation can be done in Motion, it is better to use a dedicated 3D animation app like Blender. If you really want the most top-notch effects, templates and biggest community (and can afford the price of a monthly/yearly Cloud membership) go with Adobe.

Hope this helps.

  • Thanks, I just need something to start with and then move up. Thanks for taking the time to write all that! You pinned the nail on the head for what I need to do and Adobe has always been big on my list. I eventually will also want FCP. I will go with Motion because it seems like what I want right now, a better iMovie. I have worked with adobe software and want to work with FCP. Thank you for your help!
    – b2550
    Commented Jan 13, 2013 at 16:05
  • Some of the best advice I've read online. Great job Zettt! You know your stuff!
    – user3560
    Commented Jan 31, 2013 at 2:07
  • For what it's worth, I use and love Premiere. Every now and then I give FCP another try but I never stay long before coming back to Premiere Pro.
    – Tortilla
    Commented Aug 12, 2013 at 4:53

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