Avid welcome Adobe Premiere Pro users to MediaCentral

Avid welcome Adobe Premiere Pro users to MediaCentral

Premiere Pro users, your years of warring with your Avid-loving counterparts are over. The two editing giants have joined together to bring harmony to the NLE market and peace to our timelines (and/or do some cynical marketplace positioning, depending on your worldview).

Adobe have previously teamed up with Maxon to give After Effects users dynamic access to richer 3D tools, and now they’re doing their editors a similar favour. The update will allow Premiere Pro editors to connect to Avid’s production environment via Avid MediaCentral | UX.

How does it work?

You will need to head to myavid.com and download the MediaCentral Premiere Pro Connector and install it on each of your Premiere Pro-equipped machines. You’ll then be able to see the Avid MediaCentral | UX HTML5 user interface within the Premiere Pro interface, and use it to access the wonderfully named “Avid asset management realm”, which consists of Interplay | Production, Interplay | MAM and iNEWS.

What can you do? 

Once you enter the realm, you’ll be able to:

– Search for media assets using the central Media | Index.

– Chat with other MediaCentral | UX users.

– Navigate database hierarchies.

– See, add and modify metadata.

Will you be able to register Avid Assets to Premiere Pro projects for editing? 

Hell yes, friend. Not only that, but you’ll be able to check out master clips in Premiere-supported formats, check out simple sequences for in-place editing and send rendered sequences back to Avid.

If your Avid media is not directly supported in Premiere, you’ll still be able to access it via an optional conversion to MXF OP-1a and simple XML shortlists.

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Avid and Boris FX extend their free plug-in deal!

Avid and Boris FX extend their free plug-in deal!

Thought you’d missed out on the Avid and Boris FX Media Composer Subscription offer? Think again – you now have until the end of March to purchase a new Subscription to Media Composer and get the Boris FX Continuum Transitions Unit free!

The Boris FX Continuum Transitions Unit is a set of 34 realtime creative plug-ins designed to help editors create visually stunning transitions. You can choose from cutting-edge transition effects like Swish Pan, Lens Flares, Flutter Cut, Damaged TV, and many more. Who doesn’t love a bit of lens flare? Check out some of the effects in Boris’s video below…

BCC Transitions Unit from Boris FX for Avid Media Composer from Boris FX on Vimeo.

How do I take advantage of this awesome offer?

That’s easy. Purchase a new Subscription to Avid Media Composer from Jigsaw24 before 31st March 2016 and get the Boris FX Continuum Transitions Unit free! Terms and conditions below:

– Applies to new Subscriptions only (not renewals).

– The offer only runs until 31st March 2016 (so be quick!).

– Customers must redeem products in their Master Avid Account by 15th April 2016.

– A link to the installer will be provided to customers in their Master Avid Account upon redemption of their Activation Card.

– Registration with Boris FX is required.

Free event: Post with the Pros – Monday 21st March, Soho

Want to get hands-on with the latest plug-ins before they’re released? We’ve got an exclusive hands-on session with mocha for Avid before its NAB launch, plus speakers from Avid, Red Giant and Boris bringing their own demo kit and doling out their best workflow advice. Register now.

Buy Avid Media Composer Subscriptions at Jigsaw24

Want to know more about Avid Media Composer Subscriptions? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Avid Artist | DNxIO now supported with Pro Tools

Avid Artist | DNxIO now supported with Pro Tools

If you missed it over the Christmas break, Avid gifted media professionals the news that the Avid Artist | DNxIO video interface is now supported with Pro Tools. It’s another step towards their streamlined, integrated Avid Everywhere vision (and a great reason to upgrade to Pro Tools 12 and or Media Composer 8). 

Official word from Avid below:

Avid Artist | DNxIO

“The Avid Artist | DNxIO is a powerful, professional video I/O interface designed to simplify and accelerate your entire HD, Ultra HD*, 2K*, and 4K* workflow. Available as standalone hardware or bundled with industry-standard Media Composer software, Artist | DNxIO enables you to capture**, monitor, and output media quickly – in the highest quality possible. And because the interface is designed to be open and flexible, you can use it with Avid and other creative tools too – like Pro Tools.

– For Pro Tools support with DNxIO, Desktop Video for Artist DNxIO version 10.5.1 is required.

– Pro Tools 12.3 and higher qualified with DNxIO.

– For more detailed information click here.

*Pro Tools does not yet support video playback of any rates and resolutions larger than HD. However, 2K/4K/UHD playback may be achieved using DNxIO with Media Composer 8.4.2 or higher as a Video Satellite.

**Capture is only supported in Media Composer.”

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Want to know more about the Avid Artist | DNxIO? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Avid qualify new HP Z840 workstations

Avid qualify new HP Z840 workstations

We realise this blog can get a bit Mac-heavy, so here’s some good news for PC users: Avid have qualified (and released configuration guidelines for) HP’s latest generation of Dual 8, 10 and 12-Core Z840 workstations.  

“The new HP Z840s use the latest in component architecture, including the new Xeon v3 and DDR4 memory,” explained our specialist Joshua Mace when we asked why this was exciting.

“These upgraded parts allow users to take advantage of higher frequency memory – up to 2133 MHz at the moment – and can support up 512 GB of memory for the absolute ultimate workstation. The new Xeon v3 processors can go all the way up to 36 processing cores using two 18-Core processors. The Z840 is also available with up to 512GB storage if you use the HP Z Turbo Drive (an ultra fast PCIe SSD based on Samsung’s M.2 technology), leaving space for four 3.5 drives.”

“We’ve already had interest in the 840 systems from some of the major facilities in the UK, for both editing and VFX work. The upgrades from previous Z-Series systems are significant and are going to really boost your capabilities for high resolution work in both your edit and compositing pipelines,” said our Avid specialist Jamie Allan.

“It’s great that Avid have qualified the 840 so quickly after release. We’re certain the smaller 440 will be hot on its heals in the new year so we can look at having a fully upgraded range of PC editing systems. Of course if you want to have a look at the new systems before investing and see how it will affect your workflows, get in touch to book a demo in our Soho facility.’

Media Composer 7, Media Composer 8 and NewsCutter 11 have all been qualified for machines running Windows 7 Professional or Windows 8.1, as are the Nitris DX, Mojo DX and ISIS storage units. You can see Avid’s full config guide here.

Want to know more about wireless audio? Call us on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Avid update Media Composer with background rendering and more

Avid update Media Composer with background rendering and more

The latest update for Media Composer is out now, with Avid adding all manner of workflow enhancements to turn you into a lean, mean editing machine. Render in the background to save time and money, use floating licence servers to cut out downtime, and find those assets you need quicker with favourite bins and the like.

Here are just a few of the new Media Composer tools and features:

Background render. Render effects in the background while you continue to work and edit within Media Composer. Use the Background Queue window to confirm progress and manage jobs.

Favourite bins. Have one or more bins always available no matter what project you’re in.

Project information in select project dialogue. Selecting a project in the list displays the project type, colour space, raster size, frames per second, stereoscopic profile and more – before opening the project.

Quick filter in project window. Quickly filter bins in the project window based on specific text.

Search for markers. Search for marker names and comments in the Find window across all sequences and master clips within a project, in both open and closed bins.

Image cache for thumbnails. Improved performance loading, scrolling or resizing large quantities of thumbnail images in bins and the timeline. In addition, the Media Cache setting allows users to set the memory and disk cache size, as well as establish the location of the disk cache.

Redundant floating licence server support. Configure an additional floating licence server as a backup server in case of emergency. When the primary server goes down, the editor seamlessly uses a licence from the backup server and continues working – no risk of losing access to your licences!

Enhanced feeds management in Application Manager. View feeds in chronological order and choose which feeds you’d like to receive.

DMF support for DPX files. The AIS (Avid Image Sequencer) plug-in now supports DMF workflows. Use profiles to automate the linking, consolidation, transcode and copy of DPX files in the background using DMF profiles.

How to get the new update

The latest update to Media Composer has already been unleashed on the world, and getting it couldn’t be simpler. If you’re already running the latest version of MC, then Avid will drop you a notification to let you know the update’s available through the Application Manager. When ready, you’ll be given a link to download and install under the Apps tab.

If you’re purchasing Media Composer new, or a Standard Avid Support/Upgrade for Media Composer, Symphony, or NewsCutter, you’ll receive this update in your Master Avid Account. Anyone on current Support contracts can download the update either from their Master Avid Account or the Avid Download Center (login and password required). Finally, if you’re not on a current Avid Support contract, you can get one of those from us to receive the latest software update.

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Avid’s new upgrade plan: what you need to know

Avid’s new upgrade plan: what you need to know

Attention all Avid users: the software giants are saying goodbye to their current upgrade model, and are giving you until 1st January 2015 to move to the latest version by taking out one of their new annual support plans. Here’s what you need to know.

How the new plan works

First off, this isn’t a subscription model. When you buy a new licence of Media Composer, Symphony or NewsCutter, it’s yours and you own it forever. However, the only way you can get access to updates and new versions is by signing up for Avid Support, which costs £190 ex VAT and needs to be renewed annually. This cost gives you access to any and all updates Avid release for free, plus basic tech support. If you stop paying for Avid Support the licence will still function, but if you want to access any new features you will have to pay for a new licence.

Who needs to buy Avid Support?

If you bought Media Composer 8, Media Composer 7 or NewsCutter 11 between 1st April and 29th April 2014, you’ll have been automatically enrolled in Avid Support, and don’t have to do anything until next April, when you’ll need to pay to renew it for another year. All new licences purchased since then will have been automatically enrolled on Avid Support.

Everyone else will need to buy Avid Support before 1st January 2015, or you’ll have to buy new licences. If you’re using an earlier version of Media Composer, signing up to Avid Support will give you access to the latest version at no extra cost.

If you buy add-ons like the Symphony option for Media Composer, these will be covered by your initial Avid Support contract.

In case our aggressive hyperlinking hasn’t already clued you in, you can purchase Avid Support here on our site.

What if I have an existing support plan?

If you have a current Expert Plus or Elite support contract with Avid, then your Media Composer licences will automatically be enrolled in Avid Support, and you just need to renew then annually from now on.

What if I need to buy new licences?

All licences will include one year’s worth of Avid Support, and you’ll be prompted to renew in a year.

What if I choose not to sign up for Support before 2015?

You’ll still be able to use your existing Media Composer licences, but you won’t be able to update them or add Avid Support to them in future. If you wake up on 2nd January 2015 and realise that sweet merciful Zeus, you did need that licence after all, you’ll have to pay for a full, new licence. This will set you back far more than £190, so we strongly advise you to purchase Avid Support here, now, so you know you’re covered.

Isn’t there also a subscription model?

Yep. For those of you who don’t need to own your software licences outright (maybe the number of licences you need changes from project to project, maybe you only need Media Composer for a specific period), Avid now offer annual and monthly subscription plans from £429 ex VAT a year. You pay a regular fee to rent your software, and lose access to it if you miss a payment.

It’s also worth nothing that a Media Composer subscription comes with a load of extras, including access to Symphony, NewBlue Titler, Sorenson Squeeze Lite, Boris Continuum Complete Lite and a 30 day trial of iZotope Insight.

If you want to move your existing perpetual licences to a subscription model, Avid will let you cross grade for £340 ex VAT, after which you’ll have to pay the usual £429 annual fee.

What are the options too convoluted to discuss here, and who should I contact to find out more about them?

There are two other things we think you should consider. First, Avid are now offering networked and floating licences, designed to help artists in a single facility to collaborate more fluidly. Second, if you’ve been on an elderly version of Media Composer and are about to take out support to get the latest version, it’d be a good idea to check your hardware compatibility. We provide Avid accredited turnkey systems, so it’s a good idea to give us a call and discuss your options before switching versions (our contact details are below).

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

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What’s new in Media Composer 7?

What’s new in Media Composer 7?
Not content with saving us money by dropping the price, saving us time by upping the number of mind-numbing tasks that can be done in the background, improving our MAM and making it easier for us to work in hi-res, Avid have also tightened up Media Composer’s integration with Symphony, Interplay and Pro Tools. Here’s our round up of the key changes…

Automating the process of media management with Dynamic Media Folders
This new feature allows you to designate any folder on your machine as a Dynamic Media Folder and tell Media Composer to automatically copy, transcode or consolidate any files you drop into it. This accelerates and simplifies AMA tasks, as you can assign a profile to each folder to determine the format, resolution and destination of any files it works on. For example, you could drop 4K rushes into a folder, create HD DNx36 offline, transfer it to ISIS and start working with it immediately while the transcode happens in the background – you’ll receive a notification right on your timeline when the folder has finished its work. You can also automatically copy and relink to new media locations and check in to Interplay 3.0 without having to consolidate or transcode clips.

New codecs and improved AMA support
Avid’s quest to get you working with every format in Christendom continues in Media Composer 7, with AS-11 standard support and XAVC 2k/4k support both being added. The AMA workflow has been streamlined, too – linking media can now be taken care of in a single window, and you can drag and drop the clips you want to link to rather than generating new media. All your AMA media will now appear in the Media Tool panel so you can keep track of it, and you can relink, transcode or consolidate audio and video tracks separately. Any files with Alpha channels will retain them if they’re linked to (they appear as matte keys on your timeline).

Supporting AMWA standards for file-based delivery
Media Composer 7 sees Avid adding new tools to support project segmentation. They support the AS-11 delivery standard, and you can access your AS-11 file directly so that you can edit them without importing. Your segmentation will be displayed in the timeline, your metadata will show up in the right bin columns, and you’ll be able to export your AS-11 files in a single multi-essence OP1-A MXF file. There’s also AS-02 support for anyone looking to manage multi-version master files as a single bundle. You can create and manage the file essences of J2K, DNxHD, 1:1, AVC-I and IMX files, too.

Colour Space Conversion
1D and 3D LUT and CDL support is now built in throughout your Media Composer workflow, allowing you to manage, preserve, create and output colour metadata, convert colour spaces in real time, bulk modify clips, apply custom LUTs from other apps such as DaVinci Resolve and auto-convert clips to their proper colour space using their metadata. Your clips’ colour info will now appear right in the media bin, and taking a hint from the increasing popularity of node-based editing in other post apps, Avid are now letting you change the order in which multiple colour transforms are added to a clip.

Free edit stations from rendering with Avid’s new background transcode engine
As we mentioned earlier, you can now transcode, consolidate and copy clips in the background. Avid’s background transcode engine leverages not only your computer’s CPU but the power of any platforms you’re connected to (an Interplay Sphere environment for example) in order to process transcoding jobs with the least possible impact on your system performance. You can manage jobs simply using the new Process List, which allows you to cancel, pause and prioritise tasks, as well as monitor their progress.

Converting high res to HD with Frame Flex 
Frame Flex is a cunning new feature that enables easy pan and scanning of high res images so that you can cut an HD frame out of a 2K or 4K shot in order to deliver that media straight to HD. All you do is use a simple framing selection tool to choose the area of the clip you want to keep (you can check what it will look like in a source monitor UI). You shot is then cut down to size, and you can keyframe it, animate it using pans and zooms, use the same settings to bulk modify clips and then output them via Avid I/O or an Open I/O supported third party solution.

Improving your audio workflow
Last but not least, Avid have also given Media Composer’s audio workflow a boost. As the improved integration with Pro Tools and its new video engine suggests, the emphasis is on making audio for post workflows as seamless as possible and saving you valuable time. You can now cache audio waveforms and instantly redraw them on the timeline or at the source. The waveforms are stored at project data level and associated with a user, not a project, so you can have your own cache rather than working from a centrally stored one. You can also make gain adjustments on the timeline simply by clicking and dragging a clip’s gain, and there’s even an audio mixer UI that you can call up right on the timeline.

Symphony and Interplay
Media Composer will run on Mac OS X 10.7 and 10.8,  Windows 7  and Windows 8. If you have ongoing projects, don’t worry – you’ll now be able to roll back to the previous version of your software if you need to. If you opt for Media Composer 7 with Symphony option, you’ll get a 30 day free Symphony trial in-app, complete with Boris Continuum Complete, and if you decide to upgrade, all you need to do is enter the upgrade key Avid provide. Once you have your Symphony licence, you’re free to move it between systems, so your artists aren’t tied to one machine.

One thing you need to bear in mind is that Media Composer 7 comes in two versions – a standard version and an Interplay version. As the name suggests the Interplay edition is the only one that’s capable of integrating into a full Interplay environment, and as a result costs £380 extra (unless you’re an academic  – the standard price education version of MC7 is Interplay-capable. You also get some exclusive networked licensing options). However, you can upgrade from the standard to the Interplay edition for just £359 ex VAT, so if you’re thinking of moving to Interplay or are not sure how many of your users will require access to it, we’d recommend starting out with basic licences and then upgrading as many as you need when you’re ready to head over to Interplay.

You can buy Avid Media Composer 7 now on our site. If you’d like to know more, give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Adobe, Avid and Xsan

Adobe, Avid and Xsan

If you’re a former Final Cut devotee thinking of making the move to Media Composer or Premiere Pro, the prospect of giving up your Xsan and losing all that lovely shared storage might seem a bit daunting. However, all is not lost: there are some surprisingly simple ways to work around this, and keep the functionality of your Xsan intact.

The surprisingly simple bit

Premiere Pro works with Xsan. No, really. Granted, you may have to make some tweaks to your workflow – some users find it works better if you ensure that your project lives on the SAN, with your working media caches being set to ‘same as project’ so that you can carry the same preferences between workstations and editors, but generally speaking, you can keep your Xsan setup as is, especially if you’re using Premiere Pro on Macs, too.

The Avid option

Sadly, working things out with Media Composer is less easy. If you’re feeling flush, one option is to rip out your Xsan and replace it with one of the Avid equivalents – ISIS 5000 will stand in just fine for a standard SAN setup, or you can upgrade to Unity MediaNetwork hardware if you need truly simultaneous sharing of assets between users and platforms. There are plenty of advantages to moving to ISIS or Unity – the combination of AVID hardware and software should ensure reliability and they’re both certified by AVID, so you can be sure of a certain level of support.

The third way…

However, there is another way. Earlier this year, Tiger Technology and FilmPartners teamed up to offer a new, universal SAN management system for FCP, Premiere Pro and Media Composer.

MXFServer has been around for a while as a project management tool. It lets you store metadata and media in universal MXF containers that are then accessed through different ‘abstraction layers’ based on which editing application you’re using. This allows multiple users to access footage in QuickTime or any native MXF file format instantly, and use MXFServer’s bin-locking options to work collaboratively or individually on the project without needing to transcode anything.

Tiger Technology have now made everything that bit easier by developing an API that will allow MXFServer to interact directly with metaSAN. The result is a flexible system that allows for high speed, scalable shared storage to be managed effectively, with metaSAN handing the fine detail at file level while MXFServer takes care of your edit-in-place demands.

The flexibility of this system is fantastic, and makes it a great choice for anyone who needs to collaborate with third parties who may use different system, but it’s not certified by Avid or Adobe.

Wondering which is right for you? Give our consultants a call on 03332 409 306, email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com or head over to Jigsaw24.com to see our full broadcast range.

The XDCAM compatibility Guide

The XDCAM compatibility Guide

Having trouble working out whether your XDCAM or XDCAM EX is going to work with your software? Worry no longer. Sony have released this handy-dandy chart that shows you exactly which features of which NLEs are supported by which cameras. Lovely.

For anyone who’s eyes aren’t up to the tiny print (or who’d like a copy to take away), you can download the PDF here: XDCAM Interoperability.

 

Want to know more about what your XDCAM can do? Give us a call on 03332 409 306, email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com or leave a comment below and we’ll get back to you shortly. In the meantime, head over to Jigsaw24.com to see our full broadcast range.