Used apple software -- Final Cut Studio

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by yodermk, Feb 6, 2008.

  1. yodermk macrumors member

    May 13, 2006
    Hi, I'm just toying with the idea of getting an iMac and Final Cut Studio. (Currently a Linux geek who occasionally plays with Cinelerra, but I might as well see what I'm missing.)

    Does it make any sense to buy used Apple software on eBay? Looks like one can save $200 or more on the full FCS 2. Are licenses fully transferable?

    What about the academic version? Legal to buy for someone who's been out of school for years? Does it put watermarks or anything else in your work?

    I don't have any immediate plans to use it for money, but wouldn't rule that out.

    Any ideas on when the next version of FCP comes out? Is it normally every couple years or so?

  2. Sonicjay macrumors 6502a


    Jan 1, 2008
    Regarding the student version, it's not an issue of owning it that I'm aware of, but one thing to keep in mind is that the student edition is not eligible for upgrades (meaning if FCS 3 came out, it would not be a qualifying product for the Upgrade version).
  3. Sannekita macrumors regular


    Nov 4, 2007
    I had no idea the student versions didn't qualify for and update. But if you could buy the student version cheap, you could do that since the current FCP will probably satisfy you for many years, it's allready pretty amazing.
  4. yodermk thread starter macrumors member

    May 13, 2006
    Since the student version costs about the same as an upgrade, it's fairly irrelevant that it's not eligible.

    Only question is, is it legal for non students to purchase and use, and are there watermarks or any other potential drawbacks?
  5. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030


    May 18, 2004
    for what it's worth, in the section covering transfer rights, the EULA says;

    "Academic Copies: If the Apple Software package has an academic label or if you acquired the Apple Software at an academic discount, you must be an Eligible Educational End User to use the Apple Software. "Eligible Educational End Users" means students, faculty, staff and administration attending and/or working at an educational institutional facility (i.e., college campus, public or private K-12 schools)."

    edit; here's the link to the EULA
  6. nickelpar macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2008
    Northern KY
    I was also looking to save $ on FCP2 last month after I laid out $3500 on my MacPro 8 core that I'm awaiting delivery on. Thought of doing Mac Mall to save $100 on a full, udgradeable version and then did an eBay search. I found a sealed full version (not academic) for $1000 including shipping and insurance. Seller had a 4000 or 5000 transaction/99.9% pos feedback. I got the software in four days and it was sealed, with all manuals and discs inside. I haven't installed yet, but everything looks good so far. I looked at his recent transactions and saw that he sold one of these every few weeks along with some other Apple software. I'm happy with this deal.
  7. blairwillis macrumors regular

    Jul 24, 2005
    Psssst.... hey buddy.... over here.... in the trench coat..... wannabuya watch?

    First off, if something seems shady :cool: or too good to be true :eek: it probably is. :eek:

    If I told you I was selling FCS 3 preloaded on a 64 core Mac Pro with 1024GB RAM and a 64TB Hard Drive for the low-low price of $741, you might think something was maybe a little off, right? Use your best judgment on eBay deals or elsewhere. Getting FCS 2 and saving 10-15% from a well reputed domestic seller I think would be reasonable. I buy pro lighting equipment on eBay from a specific dealer because I can get a better price due to the flexibility they have in the competitive eBay market. They can't necessarily price new products as aggressively in an online store due to "minimum price" requirements by the manufacturer.

    Also, I wanted to let you know I'm selling my full retail version of FCS HD (v1) and just posted it to the Marketplace section along with some other software. :D It is legally transferrable, not academic, and fully upgradeable to FCS 2. I'm asking $499 (shipped), and the FCS 2 upgrade from Apple is $499, so that's a $300 savings over the full price FCS 2, same end result. If it doesn't sell in a while I'll lower the price, or make an offer. I do have one offer under negotiation, but nothing final. (You can check out my eBay feedback, liquidvision1, and I'd be glad to setup an eBay transaction if you preferred that method. I'm also verified PayPal.)

    Yes, regular "Full Retail" licenses are fully transferrable. Just make sure that if you are buying the software you are getting the license code (serial number) in the deal, and that it is a unique, original code that is not in use and has not been upgraded. It's ok for the seller to have used it, then uninstalled it in order to sell it to you, as long as it's not been used to upgrade. Some ne'er-do-wells (I've never really used that term before, I promise) will try to sell you the "software" and only send you the discs. This just happened to a fellow here, and he now has the discs but no license code. Well, you can't even run the apps without the code the first time. Also, if you purchased a FCS 1 but the code had been used to purchase an upgrade to FCS 2 already, then you couldn't do the same. (And the sale to you would have been against the EULA = illegal anyway.)

    It's only "legal" to buy the academic version if you are a student, teacher, school board member or other specific listed entity. You can click on "Store for Education" on the store for more details. If you don't think you qualify, you probably don't.

    The academic version of software typically does not watermark output, at least in any obvious way. There may very well be some kind of hidden encrypted digital watermark buried in the output of FCS, but you'd have to be pretty paranoid to worry about that. I'm not a proponent of illegally using academic software, but I don't think there's a secret academic software police going out and testing videos for hidden watermarks. But who knows. Maybe you get lucky and produce a $50 million blockbuster and forgot all about getting around to purchasing the full version of the software and here comes the evil twin Steve Jobs knocking at your door with his robot army.

    Do the right thing. You'll sleep better. Actually, I don't really care what you do, I'll sleep fine anyway.

    Realistically, if you're just messing around with the software, save your money and stick to iMovie or Final Cut Express. Turns out I wasted a ton of cash on FCS and didn't use it as much as I expected. That's why I'm selling it. I'll be glad to recoup a fraction of my original cost and put that cash to better use elsewhere. Not that I want to talk you out of buying what I'm selling, but, sheesh I can be a crappy salesman sometimes....

    I'd expect 2009 maybe, but it's hard to say. It's not as regularly updated as iLife or iWork (which mysteriously skipped '07) and it's not publicly tested like OS X so there's not much to go on. But then, it's a true "Pro" app at the top of its field, and it gets continuously updated as technology changes, and frankly I think even FCS 1 is still more than enough to get the job done unless you're George Lucas or something. Believe me, there's so much HD mumbo jumbo in there that I think I could launch a satellite telescope and record the lunar eclipse tonight in 3D if I could only find the right menu.....

  8. ghettochris macrumors 6502a

    Feb 19, 2008
    I don't think that would be too hard, you'd just need to find 2 online telescopes, preferably one where the sun just set, and one where it was about to rise, the stereo separation close to the diameter of the earth should get quite a nice 3d effect.

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