Caption Clip


Caption Clip requires FCPX 10.4.8 or higher. May be backdated to 10.4.


Caption Clip — running text for clips


This *Effect* is similar to Flash Words, and you can use it exactly the same if you like. However, Caption Clip is an Effect, not  a Title, and its designed purpose is very different.. It works directly in video clips, other Titles or Generators. It “plays well” with Highlighter and other effects made by Sight-Creations as well as any other effects made by others.

Caption Clip plays multiline texts in sequence, line by line. The length, or time on screen, of each line is:

Time Length of Clip ÷ the Number of Lines of Text

What is a line of text? A series of characters that ends with a “newline” or “return”.  If you type a return at the end of your last line of text, it will add another blank line at the end, so be careful and use this only if you mean it!

You can use blank lines to space texts, create pauses, and you can double lines of text to make them stay on screen twice as long. Something to consider if you’re using this effect for subtitling conversations.


Location is the position of the text in OSC values which will depend on the aspect ratio of your project. Briefly: the aspect ratio of 16:9 is 1.777…8. If you divide that in half, you get: 0.8888888 or 0.8889 (FCPX rounds the last number shown) so the X location goes from -0.89 to +0.89 and the Y goes from -0.5 to +0.5. If you dial down the disclosure triangle, the X and Y values both go from 0.0 to 1.0 and center screen is 0.5, 0.5.

Start Time and End Time. These parameters allow you to delay the start of text display and end it with respect to the length of the clip the effect is applied to. Values are in %. It’s visually easy to guestimate these times, but for more accurate settings, consider our Progress % of Clip plugin! It will be most helpful.

Text is where you type in or paste your lines of text. The three dots under the textbox can be clicked and dragged down to show more of your text. Useful if you’re editing in the textbox.

Collection is only useful if you organize your fonts in Font Book by Collection. It will help narrow down the fonts you’re looking for instead of having to navigate your entire font list. If you have more than 1000 fonts installed, this will be a relief!

Font: Defaults to Helvetica Neue Light.

Size is the Font Size and it defaults to 80.

Line Spacing. This is here with a purpose. Whenever you change any aspect of your font, the line spacing is going to go … off. You will need this to re-balance your text when you do make changes. Don’t worry — you’re covered!

Alignment – You should have choices!

Tracking determines the inter-character spacing across the entire text (this is not Kerning!)

Rotation. Interesting option allows you to turn the text for different effects, for example, lining up the text in a sign or on a building in your scene.

Scale. Typically easier to deal with if animating “size”.

Slant. Sometimes you just need italics, even if they are fake.

Color. Of course!

Opacity. Again, of course!

Show Guide. This one is important. As explained above, when you make changes to font characteristics, you will throw off the alignment of the baselines for each “line” of text. Choose any font variation you want, then turn on Show Guide. Position the playhead on the last line of text in the storyline. Adjust Line Spacing to “settle” the last line on the guide. If set up just like the first line, then if you double lines, you will not notice a “bump” in position. Every line will be perfectly aligned to the next as they appear on the screen.

Remember: This is an Effect!

You can apply Caption Clip to any clip, make changes to all the parameters, for your custom appearance, then Save As Effect Preset!

Installation Instructions.

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A good place to see all of my effects as well as several tutorials and other demonstrations in use is on my YouTube channel.