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Workflow and productivity
enhancements set to improve editing in Canopus Edius V2.5
real-time DV/analogue editing software for Windows, Edius 2 (review,
Jun 04, p24) has been upgraded to version 2.5, adding workflow and productivity
enhancements said to include selecting and moving multiple clips, and
a cropping, scaling and repositioning tool for real-time aspect-ratio
Price is £410 (inc VAT) but registered users of Edius 2 can get
a V2.5 upgrade as a free download (224MByte) or pay £24 for a
pack that includes a printed manual and the program on CD.
The company says that filters and transitions can be easily and quickly
applied to multiple clips simultaneously, and that Edius projects can
be merged and projects from Canopus Imaginate 2 (news, Jul 04, p10)
There is also support for AIFF and Ogg Vorbis audio files, and a plug-in
bridge that's reckoned to allow VST audio plug-ins to function as Edius
2.5 audio filters. Version 2.5 also adds an applet for customising and
setting up keyboard commands to suit the user. As with V2, the Inscriber
TitleMotion Pro titler is provided.
Minimum (recommended) specs include Windows XP; 1GHz PIII CPU (2.4GHz
CPU with Hyper-Threading); 256MByte RAM (512MByte); graphics card with
hardware-based DirectDraw overlay and 32-bit/1,024 x 768 display; ATA100/5,400rpm
hard disk (Ultra SCSI 160 or better when playing two or more streams
while reading uncompressed files).
Canopus UK, 0118
921 0150; www.canopus-uk.com
Faster, low-cost editing Macs
eMac for just £699 with DVD burner and £549 without
eMac one-piece computers offer a low-cost entry into video editing on
the Mac platform. The two 17in CRT models - each now with a 1.25GHz
PowerPC G4 processor - go out for £549 and £699 (inc VAT).
As standard, they have two FireWire 1394a ports, three USB 2.0 ports
(plus two USB 1.1 on the keyboard), Mac OSX 10.3 and Apple's iLife 04
suite of digital media programs (review, Jun 04, p34).The extra for
the £699 model buys an 8x DVD-R/CD-RW burner (together with iDVD
authoring software) in place of a CD-R/DVD-ROM combi, plus more hard
disk space (80GByte, rather than 40GByte).
Other shared specs included 256MByte of DDR333 RAM (expandable to 1GByte);
a 32MByte ATI Radeon 9200 4x graphics card; S-video and composite video
outputs (only usable with a £15 adapter); mirrored VGA output
(ditto); a 56K/V92 modem; 10/100 Base-T Ethernet wired network connectivity;
and the ability to upgrade to wireless networking - Apple's own fast,
802.11g-compatible Airport Extreme system or Bluetooth. The package
is rounded off by the AppleWorks 6 integrated office suite and Sound
Studio - a program for digitising LPs, tapes, cassettes and live recordings.
Apple UK, 0800 783
Matrox Premiere Pro 1.5 drivers
Matrox adds Premiere
Pro V1.5 support for RT.X100 Xtreme Pro and RT.X10 series and offers
Xtreme Pro trade-in to users of Matrox, Canopus and Pinnacle kit
Adobe Premiere Pro
1.5 drivers for Matrox's RT.X100 Xtreme Pro series (RT.X100 Xtreme review,
Nov 03, p72) and RT.X10 Suite real-time DV/analogue video editing cards
are available for free download (237MByte) from Matrox. Owners of the
Matrox Xtreme Pro Suite, Xtreme Pro Collection or RT.X10 suite who bought
after March 20, 2004 can also get free upgrades of their included Adobe
The latest drivers add DVCPRO support and WYSIWYG video output on a
PAL or NTSC TV monitor while authoring in Adobe Encore DVD 1.5 (review,
Jan 04, p28), or creating effects in Adobe After Effects 6.5 (news,
Jul 04, p11). More real-time filters add colour-correction tools such
as colour match, colour pass and colour replace, along with lens warp
and timecode overlay effects.
Matrox lists the advantages of using Premiere Pro 1.5 with the RT.X100
Xtreme Pro hardware as editing at full quality and full resolution;
real-time analogue and DV capture and export to tape; real-time MPEG-2
capture and encoding; real-time 3D effects with advanced keyframe control;
real-time filters such as Pan & Scan, Old Movie and Soft Focus;
and faster and more versatile capture and export tools.
The company is also running three trade-in-to-Xtreme Pro offers to owners
of Matrox RT.X10, RT2500 and RT2000, Canopus DVStorm, DVRaptor and Fast
DV, and Pinnacle Pro-ONE (RTDV), DV500 (DVD and Plus), DC1000 (DVD)
The first offer (£469 inc VAT) lets users swap their cards at
an RT.X100 Xtreme Pro reseller for the RT.X100 Xtreme Pro hardware and
Matrox X.tools software, providing they already own a copy of Premiere
Pro 1.5. Any other Adobe programs must be bought directly from Adobe.
The second is a trade-in (£539) for the RT.X100 Xtreme Pro Suite
bundle that includes the RT.X100 Xtreme hardware, Matrox X.tools, Premiere
Pro 1.5 upgrade version, and full versions of Encore DVD 1.5 and Audition
1.5. The user must already own a copy of Premiere 4.1 or higher, or
Adobe Premiere Pro 1.0.
The final offer (£821) is for the RT.X100 Xtreme Pro Collection
that includes all of the above plus a full version of After Effects
6.5 Standard - with the same caveats about owning Premiere.
Matrox, 01753 665500;
and High Definition (HD) and H.264 (AVC) encoding in V4 of Sorenson
Compression Suite media re-purposing software
Sorenson has upgraded
all versions of its Mac/Windows-compatible media re-purposing tool Squeeze
(Compression Suite V3 review, Sep 03, p46) to version 4, and redesigned
the interface to improve usability and workflow.
The Squeeze series now includes Squeeze 4 Compression Suite (expected
to cost US$449), Squeeze 4 for Macromedia Flash MX (US$119), and Squeeze
4 for MPEG-4 (US$199). UK pricing has yet to be announced and owners
of earlier versions are advised to call Sorenson or a reseller for upgrade
The Squeeze 4 interface is reckoned to be fully customisable - allowing
the video preview pane to be positioned anywhere on-screen, whether
used with a single monitor or multiple screens. There's a video zoom
tool reckoned to allow pixel-perfect cropping, plus a slider with in/out
markers to allow a segment of video to be previewed before compression;
and shortcut keys for quick access to common compression functions.
Batch-processing options allow presets and filters to be added simultaneously
to multiple files, and the batch window itself also permits settings
to be applied at job, source and output levels to save time.
Squeeze 4 Compression Suite adds High Definition (HD) encoding for a
variety of video formats including MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, QuickTime
and RealMedia. The Windows version adds HD encoding options for Windows
Media 9. The Sorenson AVC Pro Codec - also known as H.264 - has also
been added to Compression Suite and Squeeze 4 for MPEG-4. This Codec
is reckoned to give good quality video at 70 per cent of the data-rate
Minimum requirements for Squeeze 4 are said to be a Windows XP/2000
PIII PC or a PowerPC G4 running OSX 10.2; 128MByte of RAM; QuickTime
6; and (for Windows) DirectX 9 and Windows Media.
(UK distributor), 020 8358 5858; www.unlimited.com
Sorenson, 001 801 287 9400; www.sorenson.com
latest LaCie external hard disk drives
LaCie's latest external
hard disk drives come in portable and desktop cases designed by FA Porsche
and with either FireWire 1394a or USB 2.0 connectivity.
The portables, based on 2.5in/4,200rpm drives, span capacities from
20GByte (£110 inc VAT for USB 2.0) to 80GByte (£270 for
FireWire). Desktop models - using 5.25in/7,200rpm drives - range in
capacity between 40GByte (£85 for USB 2.0) and 250GByte (£270
All the drives are said to be compatible with Windows 98SE or later,
and Mac OS 9.x and OSX, and come with appropriate data cables. Supplied
software consists of LaCie's Storage Utilities CD-ROM with Silverlining
disk utilities Mac/Windows software and SilverKeeper easy backup for
LaCie, 020 7872
Really cool Apple Power Mac
Apple resorts to
liquid cooling in dual-2.5GHz Power Mac G5
Although even Intel
now admits that clock speed is only one of the things by which a processor
should be judged, speed remains a significant factor and is still the
headline feature. That's caused problems for Apple because it's been
unable to get hold of G5 processors for its range-leading PowerMacs
that get anywhere close to the clock speeds offered by CPUs from Intel
However, Apple's latest range-leading PowerMac uses two tricks to skirt
around the problem. The first is to fit two processors - and that's
nothing new for the company. The other is far more radical - to fit
liquid cooling. This is something that's more usually associated with
Windows PCs set up by overclocking enthusiasts vying to produce the
best benchmark figures. They use liquid cooling to dissipate the extra
heat generated by processors running above their rated speeds, suggesting
that Apple may have had to overclock the 2.5GHz processors to get them
up to their quoted speed.
The dual-2.5GHz machine (£2,200 inc VAT) sits above two other
G5 dual-processor PowerMacs, one rated at 1.8GHz (£1,500), the
other 2GHz (£1,850). As has long been the norm, all are video-edit-ready.
They're fitted with FireWire ports (FW400 and FW800) and 8x DVD-R burners,
and come with a software package that includes iMovie 4 for video editing
and iDVD 4 for authoring software, along with iPhoto 4 for still images
and iTunes 4.6 for music.
All have 512KByte of Level 2 cache per processor, are fitted with USB
2.0 ports, run Mac OSX 10.3 and use DDR400 SDRAM - 256MByte in the dual-1.8GHz
(expandable to 4GByte) and 512MByte in the others (8GByte max). The
cheapest has three PCI slots, instead of the speedier PCI-X slots found
in the higher-end Macs, and a 40GByte SATA hard disk, rather 80GByte.
The range-leader carries a 128MByte ATI Radeon 9600 XT graphics card,
the others have 64MByte Nvidia GeForce FX 5200 Ultra cards.
A 29.7in High Definition
monitor (£2,550) now tops Apple's range of three Cinema flat-panel
models, and appears to be targeted at those wanting a display suited
to editing and playing HD content from Final Cut Pro HD (V4.5, news,
Aug 04, p14).
The others are a 20in model (£999) and a 23in HD display (£1,549).
Optimal resolution is 1,680 x 1,050 for the 20in; 1,920 x 1,200 for
the 23in; and 2,560 x 1,600 for the big daddy - which requires a Mac
fitted with an Nvidia GeForce 6800 Ultra DDL graphics card. Each is
finished in brushed aluminium and fitted with a DVI connector, two FireWire
400 ports, a two-port USB 2.0 hub and a removable stand. Wall-mounting
is possible by using a £19 Apple adapter and a VESA-compliant
Apple UK, 0800 783
Boris professional FX
V3 Continuum Complete
plug-in suite of video filters and transitions for Avid Xpress Pro/DV,
Apple Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects, and more
V3 is the latest plug-in suite of high-end effects and filters from
Boris FX that works natively in video editing and compositing programs
such as Avid Xpress Pro/DV, Apple Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere Pro
and After Effects, Discreet Combustion, and Boris's own Red series (Red
GL review, Apr 04, p74). Recommended price is £539 (inc VAT) or
£175 for an upgrade.
The suite offers many customisable presets and over 50 effects including
lens flare, glint, glare, degrain, match grain, denoise, deinterlace,
optical flow, motion blur, glow matte, wire remover and Witness Protection
(blurs facial features).
There are over 150 filters (160-plus for Avid) including keying, matting,
compositing, image-processing, distortion, motion-tracking, lighting
and colour. The software is reckoned to support multi-processors and
OpenGL acceleration, and recreate multi-layer composites quickly on
all compatible systems.
Among key features are PixelChooser for creating channel or region-based
masks and Z-space (XYZ axis) filters said to give more control over
3D compositing. In addition, there are auto-animating 2D and 3D particle
wipes and procedural generators claimed to create realistic-looking
clouds, smoke, metals, wood and stars. Also included are effects said
to make video look like film, along with chromakeying tools and 3D geometric
shapes such as cube, sphere and cylinder.
There's support for eight-bit and 16-bit colour image processing, along
with online help for each filter; transitions and real-time static generators
for Final Cut Pro; and the ability to add native masks for After Effects
and share filter presets with Boris Continuum Complete AVX filters from
Avid systems to improve integration with Avid Xpress Pro/DV software.
Avid has bundled Boris FX products with its editing software for some
years, and is set to start selling Avid-specific Boris products from
its websites in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Boris FX, 0 1491
Animations and audio-visual
compositions feature on the third of the collective's DVD series
arts collective onedotzero is shortly to release the third in its DVD
series, select_dvd3. The compilation, scheduled for a September release,
features choice cuts from the collective's best animation and music
video artists. Price has yet to be confirmed, but the first two in the
series are available on amazon.co.uk for £16.19 and £17.09
(inc VAT) plus £1.16 p&p.
Contributions include work from both up-and-coming artists and seasoned
pros - using hardware and software for all budgets. The organisation,
part-funded by the Arts Council, has recently finished its eighth festival,
onedotzero8, at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London. The festival
has grown in size and scope since its inception eight years ago, and
now attracts talent from as far afield as Japan.
The week-long programme this year hosted screenings of prominent digital
visual and audio artists, talks from industry professionals and live
VJ events. Other events are hosted around the globe - a full list can
be found on the organisation's website.
As the onedotzero brand is also now a distribution label in its own
right, other DVD titles from specific artists in the fold will come
available. Releases already on offer include the first from D-Fuse,
d-tonate. This offering is said to fully exploit DVD technology for
more immersive viewing, utilising multi-angle films and multi-audio
range spans prices from £1,149 to £1,949 with G4 processor
of 1.33GHz or 1.5GHz
Apple has cut the
price and boosted the speed across its five-strong series of Titanium
PowerBook laptop Mac computers. Prices now range from £1,149 up
to £1,949 (inc VAT), and there are two speeds of G4 processor
- 1.33GHz and 1.5GHz.
Cheapest of the gang is a 12in (1,024 x 768 pixel) model with FireWire
400, a 1.33GHz CPU, 256MByte of DDR333 RAM, a 60GByte hard drive, a
64MByte nVidia GeForce FX Go5200 graphics processor and a combined DVD-ROM
reader/CD-RW burner. Next up is a similar model pitched at £1,299
- the extra buying a 4x DVD-R/CD-RW SuperDrive burner in place of the
A further £100 buys a similarly-spec'd 15in (1,280 x 854) PowerBook
with FireWire 800 and 400, a combi unit and a 1.33GHz CPU. A second
15in model, with SuperDrive, is £1,749, and this has a 1.5GHz
CPU, 512MByte RAM, and an 80GByte hard drive. In each case, the graphics
processor is a 64MByte ATI Mobility Radeon 9700, but in the SuperDrive
model this can be upgraded to 128MByte for £40.
Range leader is a 17in model with a 1,440 x 900 pixel TFT display costing
£2,000. This is otherwise identical in features to the SuperDrive
Each of the five has a built-in AirPort Extreme card, Bluetooth, 10/100Base-T
Ethernet (plus Gigabit in all except the 12in models) and full-size
keyboards (backlit in the two top-end notebooks). Ports further include
USB 2.0, S-video out (15in and 17in models), and DVI (mini-DVI in the
OSX 10.3 is installed, along with Apple's iLife '04 media software suite
(review, Jun 04, p34) - including the GarageBand music creation program
and V4 of iMovie, iTunes and iPhoto, plus iDVD with SuperDrive models.
Apple UK, 0800 783
320GByte and 500GByte external HDDs with FireWire 400 or 800 connectivity
7,200rpm external hard disk drives are available in capacities between
160GByte and 500GBytes with either FireWire 400 (IEEE 1394a) or FireWire
800 (IEEE 1394b).
The Disk Oxygen FW400 drives have white stackable cases and use Oxford
911 chipsets. VAT-inclusive suggested prices are £127 (160GByte),
£168 (250GByte), £214 (320GByte - 2x 160GByte) and £387
(500GByte - 2x 250GByte).
The Disk XTR Platinum FW800 drives use Oxford 922 chips and have SRPs
of £135 (160GByte), £172 (250GByte), £215 (320GByte
- 2x 160GByte), and £397 (500GByte - 2x 250GByte). Cases are stackable
and finished in silver for single-drive models and white for the twin-drive
Formac says that the 320GByte and 500GByte models in each range are
Raid-compatible. Each has a two-year warranty and comes with a power
supply, a manual and an appropriate data cable.
Formac UK, 020 8996
Edius goes high-end
£23,500 turnkey High-Definition system
Canopus is introducing
a High Definition version of its Edius 2 real-time DV/analogue editing
software for Windows (review, Jun 04, p24) to offer real-time, mixed
HD/standard definition editing to the broadcast and content-creation
Edius HD - available in June at an estimated price of £23,500
(inc VAT) - is being sold as a complete turnkey solution that includes
Edius Pro real-time HD editing software, Canopus's HD software Codec
and a Canopus HDRX-E1 HD-SDI/SDI input/output editing card with RS-422
support for frame-accurate VTR control.
The HDRX-E1 card is said to support HD two-way transfers with HD-D5,
HDCAM or DVCPROHD decks, and has a single HD-SDI/SDI input, two HD-SDI/SDI
outputs, one HD Ref input (Tri-level Sync), and one SD Ref input (Black
Burst). All connectors are BNC.
The customisable editing interface is said to offer real-time, multi-track
HD/SD editing, compositing, chromakeying, titling and timeline output,
as well as the ability to edit projects at HD resolution and frame rates
to prevent the need to down-convert. Inscriber TitleMotion HD for Canopus
with real-time preview capabilities is included for creating keyframable
Canopus UK, 0118
921 0150; www.canopus-uk.com
Steinberg budget audio software - Clean, Clean Plus, myMP3PRO and Cubasis
Pinnacle is introducing
V5 updates of four Steinberg-branded budget Windows audio programs -
Clean, Clean Plus, Cubasis VST and myMP3PRO.
Clean 5 (SRP £25 inc VAT) and Clean Plus 5 (£60) are restoration
tools for removing imperfections from vinyl, tape, CD, or MP3, and burning
the cleaned up audio to CD and DVD (Plus V3 review, Dec 02, p80). Plus
5 comes with a USB phono pre-amp for directly connecting a record turntable
to a PC via USB, rather than a sound card as with previous Plus hardware.
New Clean features include full DVD support, with menu-creation from
customisable templates; an improved auto-clean audio-waveform restoration
tool; and an Expander tool for putting dynamics back into compressed
Cubasis VST 5 (£60) is an audio mixer with real-time effects for
composing music, editing audio, printing scores and burning tracks onto
CD using the supplied mastering and CD-R burning tools - WaveLab Lite
2.5 and Master Unit. Also in-pack is a lite version of Pinnacle's entry-level
DV editor, Studio.
A number of real-time, professional VST plug-in filters and effects
are included - deesser, amp/speaker-simulation combo, and VSTDynamics
with compressor, limiter, noise gate, sub-base synthesizer and RezFilter
- and it's possible to use up to ten VST instrument tracks in compositions.
Cubasis VST 5 has a four-band equaliser with graphical editing; an improved
time-stretch tool; integrated LoudMax for 'pro' mastering; and Midi
recording and Groove Control with presets.
MyMP3PRO 5 (£30) is a music jukebox and file-management tool for
playing, organising and creating MP3 files, and burning them to disc.
New features include full DVD support; a DJ effects console; FTP network
support; integrated web browser; and customisable skin-creation. Upgrades
for previous versions of all four programs will be available online.
Reviewed in this issue:
Layer DVD+R9 burners and software
Primera Bravo II DVD
Apple DVD Studio Pro 3
Neuston Virtuoso MC-500
Canopus ProCoder 2
In September's news:
upgraded to V2.5
Faster, low-cost editing Macs
Matrox Premiere Pro 1.5 drivers
Sorenson squeezes further
Really cool Apple Power Mac
Boris professional FX
Digital arts from onedotzero
Cheaper, faster Mac portables
Formac FireWire hard disks
Edius goes high-end High Def
Steinberg V5 audio updates