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SYPHAnews - 19th December 2003

Welcome to SYPHAnews - a free newsletter designed to keep you up-to-date with nonlinear audio and video, and digital video camera news, as well as developments at

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Camera news

Panasonic Announces AG-DVX100A Mini-DV Cinema Camcorder
Panasonic Broadcast and Television Systems has announced the availability of the AG-DVX100A second-generation progressive-scan camcorder. As with its predecessor, the AG-DVX100, the four-pound, hand-held AG-DVX100A offers CineSwitch technology that supports 480i/60 (NTSC), cinema-style 480p/24fps and 480p/30fps image capture. New features include enhanced 24p and 30p progressive mode functions; improved colour reproduction; new cine-like gamma curves and enhanced image adjustments; a slow shutter function for higher sensitivity and dramatic motion effects; smoother zooming and focusing; a new squeeze mode for 16:9 recording; and new auto-focus assist and interval recording modes. The AG-DVX100A has a new prism system with colour separation filters, and its new on-chip lens design delivers more than 500 lines of horizontal resolution, lower flare and smear, and a high F11 sensitivity, which allows the camera to record at 3 lux (at +18dB) for nighttime acquisition. Its native progressive-scan CCDs eliminate interlace artefacts including horizontal jaggies and motion-edge tearing. Its precision wide-angle zoom Leica Dicomar lens (4.5mm to 45mm with a 56-degree viewing angle) allows a minimum object distance from lens to subject of 0.6m (from the standard 1 meter) in telephoto mode. Also new are three modes for shooting 16:9 wide-screen video, a new interval recording mode, and a One-Shot mode for animation-style filmmaking. Among the AG-DVX100A's list of standard features are two built-in, easily-accessible ND filters (1/8 ND, 1/64 ND); 2-pattern zebra and marker (now extending to 99); tally lamps; and a reversible eye cup for left and right-eyed shooters. The camcorder's standard accessories include a 1.6Ah battery, AC adapter/charger, microphone holder, remote control, shoulder strap, lens cap, 63-minute DV master tape and instruction manual. The AG-DVX100A is available at a suggested list price of US$3995. See

NLE news

Sony Electronics to Manage Professional A/V Software
Sony Electronics Broadcast and Production Systems will now manage the US sales and distribution of the Sony Media Software professional video and audio production tools in the pro A/V, music industry, and government channels. These products encompass all of the former desktop software assets of Sonic Foundry, which were acquired by Sony Pictures Digital in July, and include such tools as Vegas, Vegas + DVD, Sound Forge and ACID. See

BOXX Ships SDBOXX [pro] Editing System
BOXX Technologies has announced SDBOXX [pro], a nonlinear NTSC and PAL editing system that is bundled with Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe Encore DVD and Adobe Audition. SDBOXX [pro] includes the Bluefish444 Wildblue AV board for standard definition uncompressed 10-bit SDI I/O, genlock sync support, six channels AES/EBU digital audio, YUV to RGB colourspace conversion, and more. It is delivered fully configured and supports up to 500GB (298 minutes) of RAID3 storage in a 4U rack-mountable or deskside chassis, with a IEEE-1394 port accessible from the front. It also includes a plug-in that is capable of exporting content to Adobe After Effects. See

Media 100 Announces Significantly Reduced Pricing for 844/X
Media 100 has announced that it has lowered the price of its flagship 844/Xe realtime editing and compositing system. It has also reduced the price of its entry 844/Xi system, and of XBLUR, an advanced visual effects option for both 844/X configurations. The price moves are in anticipation of the next major software release due in January 2004, and are designed to persuade existing and new customers to move up to advanced editing and realtime visual effects processing using unlimited layers. The 844/Xi was GB£16,495, but is now reduced to GB£7095, the 844/Xe was GB£29,595 but is now GB£14,195, and the XBLUR was GB£6895, but is now GB£4795. See

Media 100 Announces Media 100 HD
Media 100 has announced its first Mac-based design in eight years. Media 100 HD is powered by new GenesisEngine (844/X) technology, called HDX, and features 10-bit uncompressed resolution-independent native HD and SD editing. The realtime processing to support resolution independence allows editors to mix and match HD and SD source material in the same timeline. With HDX, Media 100 HD also supports broadcast-quality conversion between all HD and SD formats. Media 100 HD is planned to ship in February 2004, priced at GB£5300. See

In-sync Announces SR HD 3.0 Bundle
In-sync has announced a bundle that includes Speed Razor HD 3.0, the AJA Thor HD card, and the full version of Boris RED 3GL. Speed Razor HD 3.0 includes EDL import and export, 10-bit uncompressed HD capture and playback, infinite track editing, support for HD decks such as the Panasonic AJ-HD150, capture from 16 channels of HD-SDI-embedded audio or six channels of AES/EBU, and playback up to six channels of HD-SDI-embedded audio or AES/EBU. Image processing is handled at up to 4:4:4:4. The AJA Systems Thor HD plug and play card includes HD-SDI I/O, AES/EBU audio I/O and optional Hammer (SDI/SD component output) or Shield (RGB/SVGA output). Boris Red integrates advanced 2D and 3D compositing, software DVE technology, 3D creation and animation, native vector titling, motion tracking, vector paint, rotoscoping, Adobe Illustrator file animation and extrusion, and more, all in a single plug-in application. The In-sync Speed Razor HD 3.0 bundle is scheduled for January 2004 with an MSRP of US$8999. Customers currently running Speed Razor HD 2.0 on the BOXX platform will be able to upgrade to Speed Razor HD 3.0. See

Canopus Unveils EDIUS 2.0
Canopus has announced EDIUS 2.0. This features MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 editing, and allows multiformat, multitrack editing using a Windows XP-based desktop or laptop computer with an OHCI-compliant FireWire interface. Editors can seamlessly edit, mix and output DV, MPEG-1, MPEG-2 and uncompressed video with true realtime, render-free operation. Users can work in MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 format for realtime editing, effects compositing, keying, transitions and titles, and can also author DVD-Video directly from the timeline, with full chapter point support. While EDIUS 2.0 works with any OHCI-compliant system, it is optimised for the Canopus DVStorm, DVRex RT and DVRaptor RT2 series of NLEs. Canopus is also bundling Inscriber TitleMotion with EDIUS 2.0 for creating superior graphics, video titles and motion effects. EDIUS 2.0 will be available in January 2004 for a suggested retail price of GB£369/EUR539. Registered users can upgrade to 2.0 for GB£129/EUR179, and users of EDIUS LE can upgrade for GB£199/EUR269. See

Canopus Announces MPEGcraft DVD Editing and DVD Authoring
Tool Canopus has announced MPEGcraft DVD, a software application that combines MPEG editing and DVD authoring capabilities into one affordable solution. MPEGcraft DVD contains a frame-accurate MPEG editor that allows users to cut, stitch and mix MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 video clips while preserving their original video quality. It eliminates lengthy encoding times by re-encoding only the edited segments of the video clip. Once edited, the MPEG sequence can be burnt directly to a disc or the necessary system files can be generated for future DVD authoring. Users can manually insert chapter points or automatically create them according to clip changes within the video. DVD titles can also be authored to repeat playback indefinitely - ideal for advertising kiosks, video displays and information booths. MPEGcraft DVD also includes a utility with encoding options such as multiplexing and demuxing for existing video files; MPEG re-encoding options, including upscaling of MPEG-1 to MPEG-2; and DV AVI-to-MPEG encoding. MPEGcraft DVD is available for a suggested retail price of GB£69/EUR89. See

Bluefish444 Announces Adobe Premiere Pro Plug-in for Windows
Bluefish444 has announced that its range of HD SDI and SD SDI video cards now support Adobe Premiere Pro. The Adobe Premiere Pro installer is available from the Bluefish444 website and requires the latest Bluefish444 installer version 3.1. The Adobe Premiere Pro plug-in will work with the Bluefish444 HD|Fury, HD|Lust and Wildblue AV. Bluefish444 recommends the Pro VTR 7.0 plug-in from Digital Pipeline for deck control functionality (available at HD|Lust, HD|Fury and Wildblue|AV with support for Adobe Premiere Pro retail for US$15,995, US$11,995 and US$3495 respectively. See

Blackmagic Announces V4.1 Update for All DeckLink Models
Blackmagic Design has announced the Blackmagic DeckLink V4.1 update for all DeckLink uncompressed video cards. This includes keying support for all standard definition DeckLink modes, and a new Disk Speed Test utility. It adds video and key output support to DeckLink Pro so that users can connect the two SDI outputs of DeckLink Pro into vision switchers for live keying of graphics over realtime video for graphics presentations of sports, and other live broadcast events. In addition to the external video and key output provided on DeckLink Pro, V4.1 adds an internal keyer to all DeckLink models. This allows live keying of video from the DeckLink video input to the DeckLink video output, and does not require any external equipment. V4.1 also includes the Blackmagic Disk Speed Test application for real-world video speed tests of disk arrays. Blackmagic DeckLink V4.1 is available to all DeckLink customers running on Mac OS X as a free download. See

Blackmagic Announce HDTV Upgrade for DeckLink
Blackmagic Design has announced the immediate availability of DeckLink v4.2 public beta. This software update for the entire DeckLink product range offers major enhancements to HDTV capabilities. DeckLink V4.2 includes realtime HDTV-to-standard definition down conversion, and HDTV realtime effects on an HD QuickTime video card. In addition, all standard definition DeckLink models, which start from US$695, are compatible with the new HDTV down converter, and can now playback HDTV video to NTSC or PAL SD video in realtime. See

Aurora Launches PipePro for Apple RT Extreme and Final Cut Pro
Aurora Video Systems has announced the PipePro SDI video capture and editing card. PipePro takes advantage of Apple RT Extreme Engine capabilities within Final Cut Pro, and offers 10-bit I/O across the board. The card features an SDI input, which allows editors to connect directly to a DigiBeta deck, while two SDI outputs allow for direct connection to an external video monitor and to a digital deck controlled via an RS422 serial port. PipePro can simultaneously output analogue video via composite, S-Video and YUV connections, for video monitoring on a lower-cost analogue solution and laying off to analogue decks such as Beta SP. A genlock input is also provided for synchronisation to studio equipment, although PipePro produces an internal genlock signal onto which the deck can lock. It outputs two channels of 24-bit, 48kHz analogue audio for monitoring purposes, and offers four channels of S/PDIF digital audio I/O. Aurora PipePro is priced at US$799 and is due to ship in February 2004. Aurora has also reduced the original Aurora Pipe system to US$499. See

nNovia Enhances QuickCapture A2D DVR
nNovia has annoucned enhancements to its QuickCapture A2D card. QuickCapture A2D offers tapeless recording from analogue or digital sources, IEEE-1394 connectivity with 'edit-ready, render-free' AVI type-2 material, and playback of source material in either analogue or digital formats. In addition to its existing support for both SBP-2 and AV/C protocols, up to 99 bins, and compatibility with both computer-based and standalone editing systems, QuickCapture A2D has been enhanced to support for the MOV digital file format. This allows QuickCapture A2D to be integrated seamlessly into Apple computer-based editing stations using Final Cut Pro. QuickCapture A2D also now supports finer playback control, with slow-motion playback in both forward and reverse at speeds from 1/2X (half-speed) through 1/32X (less than 1 frame per second). An NTSC brightness control has been added to make viewing easier in a variety of lighting conditions, and the bin feature has been improved to include automatic mark insertion and better search capability. QuickCapture A2D begins at under US$1400. See

Automatic Duck Releases Translation Software from Final Cut Pro 4.1 to Avid
Automatic Duck has announced the release of Automatic Duck Pro Export 2.0, a new plug-in for easy export of sequences from Final Cut Pro (FCP) 4.1 to Avid Symphony and Avid Media Composer systems for finishing. Based on the Automatic Duck Sequence Pro for FCP 3.0, the new Automatic Duck Pro Export 2.0 plug-in adds support for audio level exports to Avid, as well as FCP 4.1 compatibility. Advanced Authoring Format (AAF) support will be included in a near-term update. In addition to creating OMF files that can be imported into Avid editing systems, Automatic Duck Pro Export 2.0 can also transfer sequences to Adobe After Effects or Boris RED 3GL via Automatic Duck Pro Import AE/RED. The Automatic Duck Pro Export 2.0 plug-in is offered at US$495, with bundle pricing available. See

Automatic Duck Pro Import FCP 1.0 Simplifies Import from Avid to FCP 4.1
Automatic Duck has announced the release of Automatic Duck Pro Import FCP 1.0, a plug-in for the recently-released Final Cut Pro (FCP) 4.1 that allows editors to import Avid Open Media Format (OMF) files into FCP. Automatic Duck Pro Import FCP 1.0 makes use of the Avid OMF file format to preserve all layers and many Avid effects throughout translation to FCP 4.1. The plug-in also takes advantage of Apple XML interchange technology. Advanced Authoring Format (AAF) support will be included in a near-term update. The Automatic Duck Pro Import FCP 1.0 plug-in is offered at US$495, with bundle pricing available. See

DAW news

Steinberg Ships Cubase SL 2.0
Steinberg has launched Cubase SL2.0 with over 50 new features. Designed for professional producers, studios and musicians on a budget, Cubase SL2.0 includes the same VST 2.3 audio engine that forms the backbone of the Steinberg Nuendo and Cubase SX production systems. It features 32-bit floating point resolution and full latency compensation across all channels; a new GUI with configurable toolbar and track controls; a redesigned mixer with FX return channels; improved handling of multiple parts so that users can open and work on several MIDI or audio parts within the same editor; and a Freeze function for VST Instruments that dramatically reduces CPU load by rendering VSTi tracks invisibly in the background and deactivating that instrument. Other new features include the new Time Warp Tool for quick tempo editing, and the Stacked Recording mode that allows multiple takes to be recorded and compiled directly within a single track in the Project Window. Cubase SL has an MSRP of EUR344, and the upgrade price from Cubase SL 1.0 has an MSRP of EUR85. See

Lexicon Pro Announces Omega Desktop Recording Studio
Lexicon Pro is now shipping the Omega Desktop Recording Studio. This is an integrated 24-bit computer recording system that includes the Omega 8x4x2 USB I/O mixer, ProTracks Plus 32-track recording software, Bias Deck SE and the Lexicon Pantheon reverb plug-in. The Omega I/O mixer provides 8 inputs that are assignable to any of four simultaneous record channels. The inputs include two mic preamps, four balanced line inputs, and an S/PDIF input combined with an additional DAC for zero-latency monitoring. A high-impedance instrument input is also accessible on the front panel. The included ProTracks Plus 32-track recording suite for Windows supports editing, plug-in support, and looping features, as well as a full-featured MIDI sequencer with event editing and automation features, and soft synth support. For Mac users, the included BIAS Deck 3.5 SE recording software supports 64-track recording. The included Pantheon reverb plug-in offers 35 factory presets featuring 6 hall, chamber, plate, room, ambience and custom reverb, with 16 editable parameters. Omega Studio has an estimated street price of US$349.99. See

Roland Ships MV-8000 Production Studio
Roland has launched the MV-8000 Production Studio. This self-contained hardware unit offers 16 velocity- and aftertouch-sensitive pads, sampling, sequencing, effects processing and CD burning. It includes a 40GB hard drive, 128MB of RAM that can be expanded to 512MB, a CD-RW drive, floppy drive and USB port. It also offers 128 MIDI tracks, with 32-channel operation using external MIDI gear, and 16 audio tracks that can be used as a linear recorder. The MV-8000 Production Studio supports audio editing, synthesizing and time stretching in real-time, 24-bit reverb, chorus/delay, effects such as Isolator, Filter, Vocoder, Guitar Multi and COSM, and import of Akai MPC2000/4000 libraries, Roland S-700 samples, ACID and .WAV/AIFF files. I/O includes 1/4-inch stereo mic/line inputs, stereo RCA phono inputs, 1/4-inch stereo master and headphones outputs, and S/PDIF digital outputs in coaxial and optical formats. The MV-8000 also sports a USB port, MIDI input, two MIDI outputs and a footswitch jack, and an optional expansion board that adds six analogue outputs, coaxial and optical digital inputs, and an R-BUS port for simultaneous 8-channel digital output and 2-channel digital input. Following a major software upgrade planned for 2004, the MV-8000 will support use of an external VGA monitor and mouse. See

Metric Halo Adds DSP to Mobile I/O 2882
Metric Halo has created a new version of its FireWire audio interface, the Mobile I/O 2882+DSP. This one-rack space unit provides 18 in/20 out audio mixing and routing, with built-in digital signal processing, and can be powered entirely from a Mac FireWire bus for true portability. For studio recording, the Mobile I/O 2882+DSP provides an interface to a DAW, offering sound processing or simple file transfer between workstations. The multiple inputs and outputs can be used for separate headphone or monitor mixes, inserts, and regular I/O, in multiple formats, including mono, stereo, 5.1 and 7.1. For broadcast applications, it offers instant playback of up to eight channels per box, allowing playback of four individual stereo sends for music cues or sound effects. For live performance, in addition to operating as a remote recorder for archiving performances or to playout backing tracks and musical cues, Mobile I/O 2882+DSP can operate as a soft-synth mixer and I/O interface. Mobile I/O 2882+DSP is bundled with a variety of Mac OS9- and OSX-comptatible plug-ins. See

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