Apple VR Headset and Final Cut Pro: Get Ready!
Apple VR Headset and Final Cut Pro: Get Ready!

Apple VR Headset and Final Cut Pro: Get Ready!

4 mins read

Editing with a VR headset is not so new. While reading this article, there are geeks out there using VR headsets to edit on DaVinci Resolve and Premiere Pro. All major NLEs have documentation explaining how to use VR headsets as the main interface. However, Apple wants to bring it to the mainstream. Are we ready?

Apple VR Headset and Final Cut Pro
Apple VR Headset and Final Cut Pro

Apple VR headset and Pro Apps

If the rumors are true, the headset will be powered by an M2 chip, which means they can handle some heavy-duty tasks like those on the Pro Apps.  Furthermore, leakers have teased that you’ll be able to interact with Apple VR apps using hand tracking rather than controllers. Hence, that would facilitate complex integration like those on Logic Pro and Final Cut Pro. You will able to operate those apps just like in the iPad versions. Thus, this feature justifies the launch of the Final Cut Pro for iPad. As demonstrated in the videos below, a virtual ‘joystick’ would be very unfriendly in terms of user experience. We don’t see how effective editing can be done via those hand devices. For precise editing, you would need the option of hand tracking. That means, you will be able to interact with Final Cut Pro and Logic Pro in VR almost exactly as you would on an iPad. Read more: Editing on FCP With Apple AR/VR Headset.

Editing with VR Headset on Premiere Pro
Editing with VR Headset on Premiere Pro

Operating System: xrOS (Extended Reality)

Bloomberg suggests that Apple had “Recently changed the name of the operating system to ‘xrOS’ from ‘realityOS’, and that the name stands for ‘Extended Reality’. This term covers both augmented reality (which overlays information on the real world) and virtual reality, a more sealed experience that we’re familiar with. Furthermore, according to Bloomberg’s Gurman, xrOS “Will have many of the same features as an iPhone and iPad but in a 3D environment”. Apple is apparently also creating an App Store for the headset, although secondary resources stated that the iPad apps can be operated ‘as is’, or with minor adaptations. More importantly, the Apple leaker stated that: “I’m told that the headset will have a content-creation focus and that its user interface, which relies on hand and eye control, could be precise enough to handle apps like Final Cut. On top of that, the device is supposed to work with any iPadOS app out of the box”.

Final Cut Pro for iPad. Interface. Source: Apple
Final Cut Pro for iPad. Interface. Source: Apple

FCP and VR headset

For those who didn’t know, FCP has been compatible with VR headsets. In fact, Apple published a documentation titled: “Use a VR headset with Final Cut Pro and Motion”. The documentation published in 2022 explains: “To use a VR headset with Final Cut Pro 10.4 and Motion 5.4 or later, connect the headset, then install SteamVR on your Intel-based Mac”. As stated by Apple: “You can use a VR headset to view your 360º video while working in Final Cut Pro and Motion. To use a VR headset, your Mac must meet the system requirements for 360º video editing and you need to install Steam software. For more information, visit the SteamVR support page, and refer to the documentation that came with your headset”. You can read more here.

Editing on FCP With Apple's AR/VR Headset
Editing on FCP With Apple’s AR/VR Headset

DaVinci Resolve and VR headset

Furthermore, the marriage between an NLE and VR headset is not so new, and there are YouTubers who have been testing it. For instance, check out this video titled “PROS and CONS of Editing in VR”. The video shows the advantages and disadvantages of using a VR headset as a main editing tool in DaVinci Resolve. The YouTuber named Immersed, says that he does almost all of his editing in VR using Immersed, and he calls it: “The future of work”. He also says that the pros of using VR headsets in NLE software are multiple virtual screens, less eye, neck, and back strain, and distraction-free focused environments. He also named the cons, which are coloring, keyboard layouts, and headset weight. Check out his demonstration in the video below:

VR Video Editing on Premiere Pro

Another YouTuber named Ijyoyo, tried to edit with the Oculus Quest 2 headset on Premiere Pro. “I decided to cut down the full 2 hours of recording in this 8-minute video to show you what it is like editing in the Oculus Quest 2” he stated and added: “I wanted to attempt to edit a video in Premiere Pro to see if it would be handy in the future. Although I did receive quite a bit of latency and getting used to controls, I have high hopes. I am still faster with a normal computer but having the image right in front of you almost in 360 is remarkable. It would be great for Virtual Reality Editing to have separate monitors to separate color channels, audio channels, and more. I think this would be a tad overwhelming at first but would become an advanced way to edit” he mentioned. Watch his trial below:

You may also know that Premiere Pro has documentation from October 202 titled: “Set up and use Head Mounted Display for immersive video in Premiere Pro…The Adobe Immersive Environment in Premiere Pro allows you to view, review and scrub through your timeline in a Head Mount Display (HMD) and still maintain the ability to use keyboard-driven editing for tasks like dynamic trimming, and adding markers”. Read it here

Final Cut Pro for iPad. Interface. Source: Apple
Final Cut Pro for iPad. Interface. Source: Apple

The groundwork has been laid

Thus, the groundwork for VR video editing has been laid. However, this groundwork has been preserved for geeks. As we speak, there are many brave VR enthusiasts out there editing on Premiere and DaVinci by using only headsets. Nevertheless, Apple wants to make it mainstream. Apple’s expertise is making complicated devices simple. Making things simple, by allowing – or should we say, serving a super user-friendly interface. As for the forthcoming headset, this interface has been developed for years. Hence, we can be sure the integration between the AR/VR headset to Final Cut Pro (and other Pro Apps) will be seamless. Would professional editors use it? Not so fast. But it will be there, as a tool, or should we say, a very expensive one ($3,000?). The Apple VR headset will be probably introduced at the forthcoming WWDC 2023 on June 5 – together with the xrOS. Let’s wait for the launch!

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Yossy Mendelovich

Yossy is a filmmaker who specializes mainly in action sports cinematography. Yossy also lectures about the art of independent filmmaking in leading educational institutes, academic programs, and festivals, and his independent films have garnered international awards and recognition.
Yossy is the founder of Y.M.Cinema Magazine.


  1. this is just f*cking stupid. who wants to edit like this? No one and there is absolutely no benefit to working this way. Apple really needs to assess what they are spending their money on. However, the FCPX faithful will buy it, doesn’t matter how bad it is, they will gladly hand over their hard-earned cash.

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