Avid have just announced that Media Composer 8.5 is now available via the Avid Download Centre for users with a valid Upgrade & Support plan (look for a notification in your copy’s Application Manager) or via your Master Avid Account if you’re a new customer.
The update promises a range of exciting new features designed to speed up your editing workflow but, as ever, we beg you to back up your work before hitting download. Do it now, in fact. We’ll wait.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll be happy to hear that new features include:
Simpler menus The menus have been reorganised to remove legacy items and simplify your user experience.
An updated Timeline UI A number of updates have been made to the timeline, including enabling Sync Rollers for Sync Locked Tracks, the ability to see full segments as you drag them within the timeline, as well as the effect their repositioning will have on the rest of the timeline before you commit the change, and creating a new track by dragging a segment above or below the timeline.
Support for 64 tracks of audio Fairly self explanatory, this one.
Group by audio waveforms Group clips can be made based on audio waveform analysis.
HDR support Media Composer now includes colour spaces for High Dynamic Range (HDR). This provides support for a higher range of video signal, and enables automatic colour transformations for source files based on the HDR colour space set in the project.
Audio mixer updates You can now resize the audio mixer and create custom track groupings.
FrameFlex rotation Users can rotate the framing box in the FrameFlex source settings using the Z rotation slides, enabling the straightening or reframing of an image at the source level rather than in the timeline.
Interactive video frame cache A new Video Memory tab has been added to the Media Cache settings to allow users to save generated frames of the current playing sequence into a memory storage cache, resulting in faster response times while editing and playing back media.
UI personalisation tools Additional UI settings have been added to allow users to change the background colour of the Project Window and Timeline, and override Bin and Project fonts and font sizes.
Bin Columns updates The process for adding Custom Columns as well as Multiple Columns in bins has been simplified, and you can now copy and paste the same text to multiple fields within a column.
Identifying rendered effects Users can now choose to differentiate between rendered effect media and Title and Matte key effect media in the Media Tool. This is helpful when identifying media to delete.
SCC import Media Composer now supports importing of Scenarist Closed Caption (.scc) files.
For a complete list of fixed bugs and new features, you’ll need to familiarise yourself with the Media Composer 8.5 ReadMe, which can be found here. You’ll also want to check your Interplay documentation – this version of Media Composer is supported with Interplay 3.2, 3.3, 3.4 and 3.5, so check your release notes for any known limitations on feature functionality.