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QuickTime 7 and X Frequently Asked Questions

I've seen a lot of confusion lately about QuickTime X in Snow Leopard and whether or not the older QuickTime Player 7 is still needed.

Here are my answers to the common questions I've seen.

Q: What is QuickTime X?

A: QuickTime X is a stripped-down version of QuickTime that provides highly-optimized hardware-accelerated playback of supported video formats. This optimization comes at the expense of features, as the QuickTime X technologies are primarily designed for playback-only. QuickTime Player X is the default stripped-down media player on Snow Leopard.

Q: What is QuickTime 7?

A: QuickTime 7 is an older but more fully-featured technology designed for playback, editing and capturing. The QuickTime 7 technologies ship with OS X. QuickTime Player 7 is an optional install from the Snow Leopard DVD but is identical to the default QuickTime Player in OS X 10.5 Leopard.

Q: Do I need to install QuickTime Player 7?

A: It's up to you. I would recommend it because QuickTime Player 7 has a lot of features that are very useful to video professionals. But it's important to remember that it's only a player and even if you don't install it, applications can continue to use QuickTime 7 technologies.

Q: Once I have installed QuickTime Player 7, where is it located?

A: It is installed to the Utilities folder inside Applications.

Q: How do I get all of my media files to open with QuickTime Player 7 instead of X?

A: Ctrl-click on a movie file in the Finder, then select Get Info. Under the Open With section, select QuickTime Player 7 and click Change All.

Q: I have a problem with Final Cut Pro. Is it because I haven't installed QuickTime Player 7?

A: No. The QuickTime 7 technologies ship with OS X by default, so installing QuickTime Player 7 makes absolutely no difference to this. It's just a player.

Q: Can QuickTime 7 and QuickTime X conflict with one another?

A: No.

Q: Does Final Cut Pro make use of the newer QuickTime X acceleration technologies?

A: Unfortunately not.

Q: Why is there no QuickTime X Pro?

A: The QuickTime X technologies are aimed at playing back media, not exporting or editing it, so there is no QuickTime X Pro because of technical limitations.

Q: Do I need to purchase QuickTime 7 Pro if I have Final Cut Pro?

A: No, Final Cut Pro unlocks Pro functionality within QuickTime for free.

Q: Why are the dimensions of my video different in QuickTime Player X vs QuickTime Player 7?

A: QuickTime Player X displays all video with a Clean aperture setting, regardless of the video's original aperture.
Posted by Jon Chappell on Oct 31 2010 to Apple, Software, QuickTime