Archive for the ‘Avid’ category
Avid has announced that DS, or Digital Studio, formerly from SoftImage, and much beloved by a select group of finishing editors, is now at End of Life. They will support it with bug fixes for another year, but after that, it’s history. They are giving DS 11 customers a license to MC (but not Symphony), and are offering reduced pricing on Eyeon products, which provide powerful node-based compositing, a hallmark of DS.
With this announcement, Avid no longer offers a finishing solution with capabilities beyond HD. Smoke is probably the closest current product. Like DS, it offers a full editing toolset, as well as powerful effects and finishing capabilities.
Scott Simmons provides preliminary details on the Pro Video Coalition site along with a detailed FAQ provided by Avid’s Marianna Montague.
Avid released Media Composer 7 today. The new version offers many AMA improvements and background processing functions (via a Java implementation), including long awaited background waveform generation and caching. A quick video showing off some of the new media management features is here.
New features include:
- Background audio waveforms.
- Background transcoding.
- Drag and drop AMA acquisition from the Finder.
- A new, unified, AMA link function that features automatic AMA plug-in selection.
- An output mask function that allows you to quickly add a letterbox over your sequence for viewing. (It’s not mentioned in the new feature list, but you’ll find it in the format tab of the project window. Turn it on and off by right-clicking the record monitor.)
- Cropping and resizing for media sizes above HD, something Avid calls FrameFlex, which can be added during ingest and then modified on a clip-by-clip basis in the timeline.
- Support for LUTs and CDLs.
- Alpha channel support for AMA Quicktimes, which means you can output titles and graphics from After Effects and use them without importing into MC.
- AMA media is now ‘managed’ which means that it’s more robust, and you’ll be able to access your AMA material via Avid’s Media Tool.
- A watch folder function, something Avid is calling Dynamic Media Folders, which lets you drag media to a folder and have it automatically copied or transcoded.
Avid’s list of new features is here. Note that if you plan to move bins back and forth between MC7 and previous versions, you must have the latest point release of MC 5.5, 6 or 6.5 (that is. 188.8.131.52, 6.04, 184.108.40.206 or 6.5.3). Otherwise, your 7.0 sequences won’t open in the older versions. See this tech note for details. MC downloads are here.
Here’s a very useful 20 min video of an MC7 demo done by Corey Tedrow and Michael Krulik at NAB. It makes many of the new features a whole lot clearer. One nice surprise — waveforms are now cached by the system, something that hasn’t been in the press releases. Click the image to play video. Thanks to TadeuszT for the link.
Avid announced MC7 at NAB today. Along with some important new features, the upgrade features a major price drop: MC is now just $999 and the Symphony color corrector can be added as a $1500 upgrade.
New Features Include:
- Master Audio Fader to adjust overall levels.
- Quick access to direct clip gain adjustment in the timeline.
- Watch folders where you can put media and have it automatically transcoded, (“Dynamic Media Folders”).
- Background Consolidate & Transcode
- Improved AMA media management — apparently via the Media Tool.
- LUT and frame size control from raw media — Avid calls this the FrameFlex Tool. (But you can’t edit with frame sizes larger than HD).
- Support for Interplay Sphere, letting you work with media located remotely on an Interplay server. MC with Interplay is $1499, and Isis gets a price cut.
Avid has just released a video describing the new audio keyframe features in MC 6.5. It’s concise, well-produced, very informative and blessedly free of the marketing hype that you sometimes see in productions like this. For me, you don’t need any more reason than this to upgrade.
Avid released Media Composer and Symphony 6.5 yesterday. Details are in this press release, and in this new features page. The What’s New pdf is here. The new version offers several new features for file based delivery (JPEG 2000, AS-02 archives and AMA writeback), but the changes that will appeal most to working editors lie in the way the system deals with audio keyframes. You can now cut and paste selected keyframes from one clip to another, and can move groups of keyframes together. There are also quick keyboard shortcuts to raise and lower selected keyframes in one-db increments and to move keyframes left/right a frame at a time; and there are menu picks that allow you to remove hidden audio keyframes. I’ve lobbied for these changes for years and am thrilled to see them implemented in this release.
6.5 also allows you to move non-adjacent clips in the timeline — meaning that you can now select and drag a series of clips separated by filler, without selecting the filler. That too, has been long in coming and is most welcome. Finally, the system now supports 64 audio voices. Voices aren’t the same as tracks, which are still limited to 24. But now that we can cut and mix stereo and 5.1 tracks, it’s easy to blow past the old 16-voice limit. All in all, it should be a very useful release. It’s available now with a Media Composer upgrade price of $500. Students get it for free.