In Praise of Unified Search

I’ve been using MC 5.5.2 for about 2 and a half weeks now and my first impressions are very good. Working with two Unity seats and a reasonable amount of media, it’s been stable, fast and responsive.

A lot has been made of this version’s new phonetic search capability. Certainly the most gee whiz new feature, the system “listens” to your audio, building its index in the background, and then lets you find dialog with surprising accuracy.

But for a scripted show, it’s the new unified Find feature that wins for me. I was recently looking to to fill a scene that was just too quiet. Nothing in my sound effects library felt like part of the scene and I quickly wanted to listen to all of the room tone that had been recorded. We’ve got dozens of bins and only a few pieces of RT. The prospect of opening all those bins seemed like a lot of effort that might be wasted, but then I realized I could look through them all at once. Fifteen seconds later I had found what I was looking for.

Being able to search for any data in any bin isn’t new in the history of non-linear editing, and it isn’t flashy. But in terms of bread and butter functionality, it’s going to change the way we Media Composer users work every day.

Explore posts in the same categories: Avid, Avid Technical Tips

5 Comments on “In Praise of Unified Search”

  1. carlos Says:

    Been editing for some time now but I just cut my first feature. ScriptSync is the most amazing feature I’ve seen in a while. Especially with comedy when comparing the funniest delivery for almost every line is essential. Very impressed. Go avid.

  2. Robin Buday Says:

    Carlos ScriptSync is cool, but the way you use it could be greatly improved. Keeping it up to date is a full time job when it really doesn’t have to be.

    As far as searching for data across all bins is concerned yes, it’s very useful, but it should’ve have been implemented many versions ago. Having to pay for an essential function that’s existed for years on other NLEs kind of irks me. Better late then never I guess…

  3. Sean Albertson Says:

    Downloading it now… can’t wait!

  4. Norman Says:


    I don’t think you need to pay for the universal search. Only the search across audio. Still, I completely agree. Paying a bundle for scriptsync AND audio search is a non-starter for my students.

    THough, to be honest, you’d have to pay for GET on the FCP side.

    • Robin Buday Says:

      I meant paying for the upgrade to version 5.5, not the Phrasefind upgrade. Universal search is something that should be patched to all versions for FREE.

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