OS High Sierra or Mojave for FCPX?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by darkprints, Nov 30, 2018.

  1. darkprints macrumors newbie

    Jun 26, 2012
    I want to try FCP X, but the current available version (10.4.4) does not work on Sierra, so I will have to install OS 10.13.6 or later on an external drive and boot from that. My question is should I go with OS 10.13.6, or 10.14.1?
    Also, will I have problems with an external SSD boot drive using USB 3.0? Would Firewire 800 be better?

    [I will not update my current OS Sierra 10.12.6 because I am dependent on Adobe CS5.5]
  2. joema2 macrumors 68000


    Sep 3, 2013
    If your machine has FireWire, that implies it is a 2011 iMac or older. I don't think Mojave is supported on 2011 or older iMacs. Apparently your only option is installing High Sierra 10.13.6 on an external drive and booting from that.

    However I think the 2011 and older iMacs only had USB 2.0 which is extremely slow. It definitely would not be a good experience from a performance standpoint.

    If you could obtain a used 2013 iMac 27 that is a pretty nice and fast machine. You could probably get one for about $800. It also has Thunderbolt and USB 3.0, and opens up using Mojave and later versions.

    If you just want to experience FCPX, do you already have or can you get iMovie? It uses the same rendering engine, just doesn't have the high end features like proxies, etc.
  3. ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Feb 10, 2008
    Yeah, the latests some of the older macs, say a 2009 iMac, will officially run is El Capitan.

    As far as booting from USB, we have a SSD boot drive on that iMac and it boots fine, perhaps a little slow opening apps initially. If you throw your media on it too, you may get more slowdowns than you like.

    FW would be better as its more friendly to SATA data and commands.
  4. darkprints thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 26, 2012
    I have a mid-2012 cMBP which has Firewire 800, USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt. I realize TB would be best, but the enclosures are out of my budget - thus I ask if USB 3.0 vs FW 800 would be best.

    [Note: the MBP is connected to a NEC PA272 calibrated monitor via the TB port. I don't use the laptop screen. Also, I would install the OS and FCPX on the SSD, and put the media files on an external HD.]
  5. joema2 macrumors 68000


    Sep 3, 2013
    In these tests a USB 3.0 rotating drive was significantly faster than an equivalent FireWire 800 drive, and the difference was even greater with SSD: https://www.macworld.com/article/2039427/how-fast-is-usb-3-0-really-.html
  6. darkprints thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 26, 2012
  7. e1me5 macrumors 6502


    Jun 11, 2013
    I run 10.14 on a mid-2012 cMBP and although I now use it as a secondary machine it's snappy and reliable. High Sierra was reliable after some updates but wasn't that snappy (mainly when the Nvidia GPU was used). FCPX was and is always running great, edits 4k easily without proxies (expect DJI 4K h264 video and that happened after an update in FCPX or High Sierra, before it was flawless). I would suggest to split the internal drive, I am assuming it's an SSD, and install both Sierra and Mojave on it, just to preserve the USB 3 port (and for the sake of simplicity).
  8. Boyd01 Moderator


    Staff Member

    Feb 21, 2012
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    I run FCPX on a 2012 2.6ghz i7 quad core Mini server that boots from an external 1TB USB 3.0 Samsung T3 SSD. It works very well. This machine also has an original 256gb Apple internal SSD and I notice very little difference in performance, although it takes about 30 secs to boot from the external vs 15 sec from the internal. The T3 has been replaced by the T5 which is a bit faster, and I have seen some nice sales on them recently. Here's how it performs on my Mini.


    Sorry, I can't help with the question about High Sierra vs Mojave, I am still running Sierra with an older version of FCPX.
  9. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    OP wrote:
    "Now i have decide on Mojave vs High Sierra. My main concern is reliability."

    High Sierra is a "mature" OS, with most bugs worked out.
    Mojave remains very much "a work in progress".

Share This Page

8 November 30, 2018