Apple Releases Final Cut Studio 3

Just got word that Apple has released Final Cut Studio 3.  It contains new versions of Final Cut Pro 7, Motion 4, Color 1.5, Compressor 3.5, and DVD Studio Pro 4. Best of all it contains Blu-ray support…. Press release below;

Apple Updates Final Cut Studio with More Than 100 New Features

New Versions of Final Cut Pro, Motion, Soundtrack Pro, Color and Compressor

CUPERTINO, Calif., July 23 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Apple today announced a significant update to Final Cut Studio with more than 100 new features and new versions of Final Cut Pro , Motion, Soundtrack Pro, Color and Compressor. Final Cut Studio features Final Cut Pro 7 which expands Apple’s ProRes codec family to support virtually any workflow and includes Easy Export for one step output to a variety of formats and iChat Theater support for real-time collaboration. Motion 4 includes enhanced tools such as 3D shadows, reflections and depth of field for stunning motion graphics and visual effects, and Soundtrack Pro 3 features new multitrack audio tools to streamline audio post production. Color 1.5 includes better Final Cut Pro integration and support for full color resolution, and Compressor 3.5 adds new features that make it easy to set up and customize your export options. At $999, the new Final Cut Studio is $300 less than the previous release and is also available as an upgrade for just $299.

“With 1.4 million users and 50 percent of the market,* Final Cut Pro is the number one professional video editing application,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing. “The new Final Cut Studio includes more than 100 new features and dramatically expands Apple’s ProRes family of codecs so editors can work in the studio with the highest quality video or on location at low bandwidths.”

Final Cut Pro 7, the latest version of Apple’s Emmy Award-winning editing software, includes new versions of Apple’s ProRes codecs to support virtually any workflow with the addition of ProRes Proxy, for offline and mobile editing at low bandwidth; ProRes LT, for general purpose editing; and ProRes 4444 for editing and visual effects at the highest quality possible. Easy Export allows users to continue working on projects while encoding is done in the background and the sequence is exported to YouTube, MobileMe(TM), iPhone(TM), iPod , Apple TV , DVD or Blu-ray. iChat Theater support allows real time collaboration by sharing Final Cut timelines or individual source clips with iChat users anywhere in the world, even if they don’t have a copy of Final Cut Pro. Other new features include new speed tools to change clip speed with ease, alpha transitions to create dramatic effects using moving mattes, and native AVC-Intra support for the latest high quality Panasonic cameras.

Motion 4 extends award-winning, easy to use animation tools so video editors can quickly create everything from basic titles to animated credit rolls to stunning motion graphics. Enhancing 3D compositions is faster than ever with new customizable features that add point and spot lights to cast realistic shadows or turn any shape, video plane or paint stroke into a reflective surface. Motion 4 gives editors the flexibility to adjust the depth of field within a 3D canvas by selectively highlighting a single object or using multiple objects to create a racking focus effect.

Soundtrack Pro 3 adds powerful new audio editing tools including Voice Level Match which extracts volume information from the vocal content of one clip and applies it to another without altering any other audio content so editors can easily correct mismatched voice levels. An enhanced File Editor includes new tools to make sophisticated edits and fine tune volume adjustments by targeting specific frequencies such as the rustle of a paper or the bump of a desk without affecting dialogue. The new Advanced Time Stretch feature stretches and compresses audio with incredible precision using three Apple-designed algorithms or other algorithms available as third party plug-ins.

Color 1.5, Apple’s easy to use professional grading application, now works with a greater range of sequences and effects from Final Cut Pro and an integrated workflow allows editors to complete projects entirely within Final Cut Studio. New 4K support works natively with files from cameras such as the RED ONE and outputs directly to ProRes for HD or DPX for film. Expanded support for new high quality formats includes AVC-Intra, XDCAM 422 and ProRes 4444, for grading with the maximum amount of color information.

Compressor 3.5 makes encoding and delivering in multiple formats easier than ever with the ability to automatically detect QuickTime settings and create an Easy Export template or a mini “droplet” on the desktop that automates specific Compressor actions. New, customizable sharing options make it easy to publish to YouTube and MobileMe, or export for iPhone, iPod, Apple TV and mobile phones. For the highest quality HD material, menu templates and encoding presets make it fast and easy to create Blu-ray discs. Final Cut Studio also includes DVD Studio Pro , a powerful DVD authoring environment with drag and drop tools, on screen editing and real time previews.

Soundtrack Pro and Compressor are also available as part of the new Logic Studio , allowing Final Cut and Logic users to collaborate and share files.

Apple today also introduced Final Cut Server 1.5, the asset management and automation tool for Final Cut Studio. Final Cut Server 1.5 includes powerful new features like lightweight, offline editing with ProRes Proxy, production hierarchies to organize media, and support for still sequences to easily view and manage image sequences for graphics and effects workflows. Final Cut Server now includes unlimited client licenses and is available for $999 or as a $299 upgrade for existing users.

Click here for full pdf.

Production Software That Sizzles At NAB 2009

Smartsound – Final Cut Pro Music Plug-In

Smartsound - Final Cut Pro Music Plug-In

Smartsound - Final Cut Pro Music Plug-In

Tuesday evenings FCPUG Supermeet  was host to the formal announcement of SmartSounds Final Cut Pro Music Plug In. I like SmartSound and use it in just about everything I edit. This software sizzled because I like it and Larry Jordan did the presentation. It fizzled because Larry made a boo-boo during the presentation but in classic LJ style he made it sizzle again by joking his way out of it…

Video of the presentation below….

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Speaking of Larry Jordan, he mentioned the following NAB Products in his latest newsletter.

GeeThree releases software that GREATLY simplifies animating still images.

Data Robotics releases DroboPro – faster expandable RAID storage

CrumplePop releases flock of new Final Cut Pro plug-ins (Video Below)

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “CrumblePop For FCP 6“, posted with vodpod

Samson Technologies releases Zoom H4N digital recorder

Digital Juice is Releasing All Sorts of New Stuff

EditShare and Automatic Duck team up to provide media sharing between FCP and Avid systems.

nVeil announces a graphics tool for the artist living within every editor.

MWA Nova’s flashtransfer teams with Front Porch Digital to provide film transfer and archiving solution.

MXF4mac announces support for more MXF video formats.

ADOBE CS4 and Final Cut Pro Integration. Export FCP Projects To Windows.

ADOBE at FCPUG Supermeet

Jason Levine of ADOBE at FCPUG Supermeet

Interoperability is the key element relating to this software. NAB 2009 and the 2009 FCPUG Supermeet provided the forum for me to get a demo of Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 software, that has seamless project exchange with Final Cut Pro. CS4 version 4.0.1 enables users to import Final Cut Pro projects via XML interchange, export to Open Media Framework (OMF) format, and import and export projects in Advanced Authoring Format (AAF).

Specifically the new software enhancements allow Final Cut Pro users to be able to transfer projects directly to Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 without conversions or re-rendering. The transfer preserves commonly used effects and transitions. Once files are in Adobe Premiere Pro CS4, assets can be moved amongst Adobe After Effects CS4, Adobe Premiere Pro CS4, and Soundbooth CS4. Apparently these files can work with Premiere on Windows. Below is a video on how this import function works.

One neat new feature in Premiere Pro CS4 is called Speech Search. It turns spoken dialog into text-based metadata that makes video searchable. During the Supermeet presentation Jason Levine (who sizzled)demonstrated how the Speech Search works. It actually allows one to select and edit point between text based words, significantly speeding up editing dialogue. A video on this Speech Search Function below.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

One other advantage of CS 4 is its workflow to Blu-ray, something that is sadly lacking in Final Cut Studio. Adobe Encore is CS4’s path to Blu-ray.

Automatic Duck – Media Copy 2.0

Media Copy 2.0 is a useful application for copying media from your NLE to another computer that needs to import your AAF, OMF or XML file. Media Copy is a helpful application that reads an Avid AAF or OMF 2.0 file or a Final Cut Pro XML file. It figures out which media files are used by that sequence then copies the media to a location you specify. It’s especially handy when media files are in several locations on your system, or to assist the editor who just doesn’t know which media files are represented in your edited sequence. Below is a video on Automatic Duck from NAB 2009;

Sony Vegas Pro 9 and VASST

SONY Vegas Pro 9

SONY Vegas Pro 9

Sony Creative Software was showing the next generation of Sony Vegas Pro 9. 4K and native RED One support along with better AVCHD and XDCAM support is part of Vegas Pro 09. On the output side Sony Vegas 9 outputs to traditional SD and HD broadcasts, to the Web, DVD and Blu-ray discs, and to portable devices like cell phones, portable media players and the Sony PSP.

SONY was also promoting the Vegas Pro Production Assistant plug-in that was developed in partnership with VASST. Pre-built output presets for broadcast workflows are included to quickly begin finalizing content for television. Additional broadcast features include tools for creating lower thirds, splitting stereo track into two mono tracks, normalizing audio tracks, broadcast color process, audio ducking functions and outputting to multiple formats simultaneously. In addition to a number of secondary tools, the Vegas Pro Production Assistant software plug-in features five primary productivity tools. They are;

  • Montage Tool
  • Motion Tool
  • Lower Thirds Tool
  • Workflow Automation Tools
  • Batch File Processing Tool

mocha for Final Cut

mocha for Final Cut is a stand alone 2D tracking tool designed for the Final Cut. It generates solid 4-point tracks based on Imagineer’s unique Planar Tracking technology. It provides position, scale, rotation, shear and perspective matched tracks and exports the data to Final Cut Pro and Final Cut Express as XML files. Final Cut Studio users can then optionally send their mocha tracking data to Apple Motion for advanced compositing functionality. Below is a video on how it works.


MXF4MAC with its MXF import and MXF export solutions is the first video capturing solution for the Mac that wraps video feeds straight to MXF without creating intermediate files. Of interest to Final Cut Pro editors is P2 Flow. P2 Flow quickly and automatically links MXF video and audio in Final Cut Pro while providing full metadata mapping. This allows editing straightaway without converting or referencing the MXF media to QuickTime MOV.

At the FCPUG Supermeet Jeremy Garchow described the process of using P2 Flow.He described a project where he used media generated from five P2 cameras and six wireless microphones in a freestyle shoot that also had a Sound Devices 788T recording 8 tracks of audio.  Following the shoot he had less than a week from shoot to air, he had over 6 hours of material and had to edit down to 60 seconds.

To speed the editing process up he used P2 Flow to import the P2 into Final Cut Pro. He synced the camera material using free run time code and a clap slate and it was ready to edit in Final Cut Pro through a workflow never seen before. Below is a video of how it is used to quickly import P2 material (no audio) and some links to tutorials on how to use the product.

Boinx TV

BoinxTV was one of the truly cool products I saw at NAB 2009. The software converts your MAC computer into a live production studio. Its features include;

  • Connect up to three cameras (SD or HD).
  • Play back any QuickTime video as a source to roll in live.
  • Switch among up to 4 sources (3 cameras + playback of pre-recorded clips).
  • Animated lower thirds, scrolling credits.
  • RSS ticker with headlines and summaries
  • Sports scores.
  • Pre-defined layers for different production styles, customizable with Apple’s free Quartz Composer software.
  • Real time, on-screen clock.
  • Records to a QuickTime file or outputs live output for live streaming (using optional 3rd-party software) or live SDI output (using optional 3rd-party hardware)
  • Integrates with Twitter
  • Works with any DV25 camera (DV, DVCAM) with IEEE-1394 (FireWire, i.LINK) output.
  • Works with any HDV camcorder as long as it has a true progressive mode.
  • Works with any camera with HDMI output, if you add the Blackmagic Intensity or Intensity Pro to a Mac Pro tower.
  • Has a BoinxTV’s template chooser, you can select one of the default designs, whether for news or sports or whatever…..

The video above outlines what I saw at NAB.

Tiffen Photofx iPhone App

If you’re in a pinch, only have your iPhone and have to do some image editing Tifen might have the App for you! Photo fx is comprised of the following filters:, Black and White, Black Pro-Mist®, Center Spot, Color-Grad® , Color Spot, Day for Night, Enhancer, Fog, Glow, Halo, High Contrast, Infrared, Looks, Night Vision, Old Photo, Polarizer, Pro-Mist®, Reflector, Star, Soft/FX®, Tint, Two Strip, Three Strip, Ultra Contrast and Vignette. Once its fixed e-mail the image from your iPhone or iPod Touch.

audio video design inc – Voice Recognition Teleprompting Software

Voice Recognition Teleprompting Software

Voice Recognition Teleprompting Software

audio video design inc. was showing a teleprompting prototype at NAB that was of interest. The software includes voice recognition software that will automatically adjust to control the speed of the teleprompter scroll. According to the developer who I talked to at the booth, since the teleprompter text is loaded into the computer, the program only tries to recognize words in the text. This makes the voice recognition element much less compute intensive given that the dictionary is pre-defined. Neat product….

Other Products

TOPAZ Adjust

TOPAZ Adjust



CPC Webcast Captioning

CPC Webcast Captioning



NAB 2008 – Links Of All Things NAB 2008

Below are some random links of different items that I saw an NAB 2008;

Lowel Ego Light Video below;

Lowel EDULighting Resource Center. Video Below;

Matrox MXO2 – that provides broadcast-quality input/output, monitoring, and up/down/cross conversion to Apple Final Cut Studio 2 and Adobe CS3 Production Premium on the Mac. Click Here For Video Link.

Vikuiti Rear Projection Film – Video Below;

KAE CorporationApple™ G5 Desk Mounts

Display DevicesConfidence Monitor Cart

Tiger TechnologymetaSAN

ScopeBox Click Here For Video.

Horita“Script Kit” PA Logging Clipboard w/ Software and Pocket PA LTC – Bluetooth Transmitter

American Paper Optics3D Glasses

CheckersCable Management Systems


Quad Full High Definition (QFHD) – displays four times the number of pixels of the highest HDTV standard resolution 1080p. It’s sometimes referred to as 2160p. The number 2160 stands for 2160 lines of vertical display resolution. Video Below;

iRecord Personal Media Recorder

AminoIPTV Set Top Boxes

Native 1080p Production

Blackmagic DesignClick Here For Video Tour Of Booth.

J-LAB 15.4 inch 1080P LCD Field Monitor

TASCAM DR-1 Video Below;

Ultra scalable content storage from IBM – Video Below;

MerlinOneMerlin Video

MacBreak NAB 2008 Coverage

NAB 2008: Tidbits: Part 1

NAB 2008: Neutrik

NAB 2008: Location Sound Corp

NAB 2008: Lite Panels

NAB 2008: Plug-in Pavilion

NAB 2008: JK Audio

NAB 2008: Flow

NAB 2008: RSR

NAB 2008: Mogul

NAB 2008: Thermo

NAB 2008: Gefen

NAB 2008: Tidbits Part 2

Apple’s Final Cut Server Finally Ships!

Apple® announced today that Final Cut® Server for Final Cut Studio is now shipping, just in time for the National Association of Broadcasters conference that starts next week. Final Cut Server a software solution that provides media asset management and workflow automation and is a scaleable server application that catalogs large collections of assets across multiple disks and SAN volumes. It allows for viewing, annotation and approval of content from anywhere using a PC or Mac®. It was scheduled to be released last summer.

More On Blu-Ray, HD-DVD and Solid State Drives

Why Blu-Ray May Not Be All That Great

In Larry Jordan’s latest Final Cut Pro Newsletter he notes the sudden shift toward Blu-Ray DVDs. He notes that “while Blu-Ray may be good for Hollywood, it won’t be good for small independent producers“. He notes that this is due to the hidden fees tacked on to replicating a Blu-Ray DVD. It appears his comments originate from a discussion on the Digital Buzz podcast of January 31, 2008.

Blu-Ray Prices And Specifications…. Watch Out!

With the demise of HD-DVD both Gizmodo and Engadget are reporting higher Bul-Ray prices. In their post “Blu-ray Prices Higher Than Ever” they note that “data collected by, Blu-ray players have hit a high average of $400 per unit for the year—about the same price they were at this time last year”. They have since updated their posting noting that it’s the “off season” which normally lacks selling incentives that could account for the prices. Engadget is a little less forgiving in their post “Lack of competition sends Blu-ray player prices upward“.

Blu-Ray Profiles

Consumers need to be aware of the differing Blu-Ray Player profile. Given that SONY has already announced the BDP-S350 and S550 (SONY’s First Full 2.0 Spec Blu-ray Players), it’s important to know the differences if your planning to purchase a unit, information can be found at

Microsoft Admits Planning Blu-Ray Support

While Microsoft had always been thought to be in the HD-DVD camp, the company has moved quickly to adopt Blu-Ray At MIX08 Steve Balmer was quoted to say, “We’ve already been working on, for example, in Windows, device driver support for Blu-ray drives and the like, and I think the world moves on… Toshiba has moved on. We’ve moved on, and we’ll support Blu-ray in ways that make sense.” more here…

Toshiba’s Plan for Life After HD-DVD

In a interview for the Wall Street Journal, Chief Executive Atsutoshi Nishida of Toshiba announced that his firm will target consumers with TVs, PCs and Standard Disc Players following the collapse of HD DVD. The demise of HD DVD is a huge blow to Toshiba, which is a huge company that makes semiconductors, appliances and nuclear reactors.

Solid State Drives

As posted on an earlier date Solid State Drives are an alternative to Blu-Ray for those who want a non DRM medium. A great place to learn about this space is by looking at the tagged posts on Cnet tech news blog. In addition I found this post about Imation geting into the solid state drive game.

Been Gone For A While! Toronto podcamp 2008 brought me back!

Back In Black

I feel like I’m “Back In Black” as the saying goes but I decided to renew the after hanging out at the Toronto Podcamp 2008 this weekend. I also decided that its time to restart my blog.

Toronto Podcamp 2008

In the past four weekends I’ve attended and participated in a Toronto 4K workflow event, the SMPTE/VSF conference in Houston and Toronto podcamp 2008. To say I’m worn out is an understatement as I worked all of those events on top of my “day job” and as such was not all that talkative at the podcamp event. The content at the Toronto podcamp 2008 was good and I was amazed at the number of PR and marketers now working the space. Between the PR/Marketing component and Twitter discussion seemed to be very popular. I also took in the Open Source, Wiki and Green sessions on Sunday to broaden my knowledge in these area’s.

This years podcamp was much easier for me as Jim Loney, Sam Ellen and Marcel Ramagnano –who are second year students in Ryerson’s Radio and Television Arts Program– did much of the heavy lifting and all of the video recording for Toronto podcamp 2008. They deserve a great deal of the credit. The event went exceptionally smooth because of them.

We also employed different technology this year. We had wireless in place and we used MacBooks that we normally employ in out Hybrid Computer Lab to stream and record the sessions. The RDY2GO Espresso Media Center’s we employed for laptop projection worked perfectly and we only had one incident that I’m aware of and it was a faulty AC extension cable. If your at all interested in the technology we employ in Ryerson’s Rogers Communications Centre it can be found at

Once again Many was exceptional. ( He took some great pictures of the event with his new camera and their posted on his image site at I really like his picture of Steve Saylor just prior to his presentation at I’m looking forward to Many posting the video links because there was a lot of information at the podcamp that I’d like to review.

Random Thoughts

Toronto Raptors

The Toronto Raptors played twice this weekend against the Knicks. Boy did they ever look great on Sunday night and their new players Primoz Brezec makes the team really big. Sam Michell ran the Knicks a little ragged on Sunday putting Ford in the game and switching from a big to a small lineup with Brezec just as New York was getting into a rhythm. Can’t wait for tonights game.

RUSH Snakes and Arrows Tour…. Again!

RUSH is coming back to Toronto. I think I’ll pass on them this time around as it’s the same “Snakes and Arrows” tour that appeared in town in 2007.

NAB and Editing… What’s going on this year?

What’s this about Apple not appearing at the National Association Of Broadcasters show (NAB) in Las Vegas this year. I had heard that AVID dropped out some months before. I realize that video editing has become a “commodity” item but Apple needs to remain connected to its community and the broadcast market. It’s not the size of the booth that matters to me per say but I am concerned (after living the demise of COMDEX) that they just disappeared from the floormap. I understand that these shows take a lot of financial and human resources away from the company but totally disappearing is not a good thing in my opinion. Apple should have gone the presentation “stage” and partner pavilion route in my opinion. They would have saved some dollars on floorspace, reduced the drain on their Human Resources and perhaps added some diversity to NAB relating to third party Final Cut Pro Apps. I don’t think that a lot of people associated with Film and Broadcast industry will go to MacWorld on mass or will line up to buy the “MacBook Air” so how Apple will build a community without NAB will be an interesting thing to watch.

Speaking of NAB there seems to a great deal of confusion about the appearance of RED Digital’s RED One 4K digital cinema camera that was unveiled at NAB last year. The camera started shipping just before Christmas and there are several on the streets of Toronto. The 4K Camera, 4K Workflow event that I helped organize three weeks ago shed a great deal of light on the camera. While the event focused primarily on 4K digital cinema workflows I found the discussion amongst the people who’ve shot with the camera most interesting. What one needs to keep in mind is that the RED ONE is a Digital Cinema camera. As such it uses the same kind of lenses used on Motion Picture film camera’s. What one needs to keep in mind is that it does not have the automatic lenses that are common to most HDTV camera’s and have been designed for New Production. With RED film crews will require “focus pullers”, a skill that the new generation of “Indie” filmakers may be lacking given that they’ve developed their craft with camera’s like Panasonic’s AG-HVX200 that greatly automates the lens.

Blue Jays First 2008 Homestand

Looks like I’ll be in town for the Blue Jays opening homestand this year! It’ll be great seeing as its a Friday night home opener against Boston. Maybe I’ll actually make it out to some games this year.

I came across Microsoft’s Research into a Midair Mouse. It looks promising and I’d sure like to try one.

Pligg is an open source software package that allows one to set up a site like digg!

I found this interesting online pie chart program that I actually make use of when I create reports. I always seem to have trouble when I use Excel for simple pie charts Online Charting