Useful tools for editors: Counter Display

Here is a handy little generator for Final Cut Pro (or Final Cut Express as the site lists several plug-ins written for FCE) that has the ability to add a counter over footage. It does a number of other things but the real usefulness to me is its ability to either count either up or down, to or from zero, for the length you specify via the generator’s length in the timeline. You can display hours, minutes, seconds and/or frames as well as adding custom text. Font sizes, colors and the background can be changed to make it very customizable. It’s not a timecode reader or generator (you already get those in FCP) but can be useful in its own way. The only downside is that it’s not a real-time generator so it does have to be rendered. Rewrite that thing to make it real-time and it would be darn near perfect. A number of other plug-ins are available as well. Oh, and they’re free!