Summary: I have just acquired a Nikon D4, and have tried importing some raw video footage shot with it into FCP 7 but to no avail. If you’re having the same issues, check out the easy solution here I’ve found.
I have a Nikon D4, which can encode footage with H.264 codec and save the files in MOV container format; while, it’s a bit hard to import the Nikon D4 H.264 footage into FCP. It’s for the reason that the MOV format is FCP friendly but H.264 codec is not natively supported by Final Cut Pro because H.264 encoded contents are highly compressed and are for delivery only.
There is a quick workaround for you to get Final Cut Pro ingest Nikon MOV files without any problems. By converting Nikon H.264 .mov to ProRes encoded .mov files, the possible best quality will be retained in post-production workflow and you can then edit the resulting media files just as you would edit in QuickTime Movie format without rendering. The following guide tells you how to convert Nikon D4 MOV footage to Apple ProRes 422 codec for use in your Final Cut Pro sequence.
Transcode/Import Nikon D4 h.264 mov videos to Final Cut Pro with Apple ProRes codec on Mac
Step 1: Transfer h.264 encoded .mov files from Nikon D4 camcorder to your Mac HDD via USB cable. Run Brorsoft Video Converter for Mac as a H.264 MOV converter for FCP, and click the "Add" button to load .mov footage.
Tip: This Nikon H.264 MOV Converter for Mac supports transcoding all Nikon DSLR h.264 MOV files to Apple ProRes 422 so that you can easily import Nikon h.264 recordings to Final Cut Pro X, Final Cut Pro 6, Final Cut Pro 7 for editing on Mac. Plus, it also supports converting H.264 MOV to iMovie, FCE, Adobe, Avid and more.
Step 2: Tap “Format” bar and set a FCP friendly codec in dropdown-list. You are advised to follow “Final Cut Pro” template and choose “Apple ProRes 422 (*.mov)” as export format. Of course, Apple ProRes 422 HD, Apple ProRes 422 LT, Apple ProRes 422 Proxy, etc are all the proper format.
Step 3: Click the “Settings” button and customize proper video/ audio parameters if necessary. Video size, bitrate and frame rate are flexible and can be adjusted as you like. E.g. Set video size to 1920*1080 when you feel like to keep 1080p as the source file features.
Step 4: Hit "Convert" button to transcode Nikon D4 MOV files to FCP friendly Apple ProRes 422 files.
Once the conversion is finished, you can click "Open" button to get the output files effortlessly. Now you have got it right, feel free to import and edit converted D4 .mov footage in Final Cut Pro.