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SYPHAnews - 29th January 2002

Welcome to SYPHAnews - a newsletter designed to keep you up to date with nonlinear audio and video news, as well as developments at http://SYPHAonline.com (incorporating http://NLEguide.com and http://DAWguide.com).

We will deliver this service to you free of charge every month - unless there is some major news or event which we think you should know about sooner.

New at SYPHAonline.com

STOP PRESS!! The all-new Pro Camera Guide - a buyers guide to broadcast and professional digital cameras and camcorders - is now launched at http://SYPHAonline.com.

You can search the database of 70+ cameras and camcorders by application, recording format, body type, interchangeable lenses, CCD number, size and type, aspect ratio, audio channels, weight, cable/transmission type, digital interface, cost range, as well as manufacturer and product name.

We'd like to thank JVC, Panasonic and Thomson for sponsoring this new online publication. Special thanks also go to camera guru Perry Mitchell, see http://www.perrybits.co.uk.

For the DAW Buyers Guide we have a new full details listing for:

  • Akai - DD8plus & DD16PBplus.

For the NLE Buyers Guide we have updated entries for:

  • AIST - MovieDV
  • AIST - MoviePack VE
  • AIST - MoviePack PRO
  • AIST - eXtreme.

NLE news

NewTek Ships Video Toaster [2]
NewTek is now shipping Video Toaster [2], a live video production environment for Windows 2000-based computer systems. It includes nonlinear editing, live web streaming, character generation, 2D painting and compositing, 3D animation and effects, real time keying, video and audio processing, and a comprehensive range of production tools. Options include an SDI I/O module, and a switcher expansion module that adds component, composite and Y/C live switching, an audio mixer and machine control. The NTSC Video Toaster [2] is available immediately and retails for US$2995, while the upgrade for Video Toaster 1.0 owners is US$495. The dual-standard NTSC/PAL version of Video Toaster [2] will ship Q1 2002 and will retail for US$3495. See http://www.newtek.com.

Compaq Announces Alliance with Avid
Compaq Computer Corporation has announced an alliance with Avid Technology whereby the Compaq Evo Workstation W8000 will be used as the new global standard for Avid Media Composer, Symphony and Avid Xpress systems. Other aspects of the alliance include joint exploration of next-generation solutions, joint product development, solution testing, and certification. According to Compaq, its scalable Intel Xeon workstation architecture has been optimised for demanding applications such as uncompressed video editing, and the architecture and chassis design of the Evo Workstation W8000 provide the scalability, robustness and system bandwidth required by high-performance video editing systems. See http://www.compaq.com.

Matrox Ships DigiSuite MAX 7.0 with Comprehensive Content Creation Bundle
Matrox Video Products Group has announced that the full line of Matrox DigiSuite MAX 7.0 real-time editing platforms is now shipping worldwide. Incorporating real time 3D DVE powered by Matrox Flex 3D architecture, the Matrox DigiSuite MAX platforms include a comprehensive content creation software bundle including Adobe Premiere, Inscriber CG, Boris FX, Ligos LSX MPEG, Pixélan Video Spice Rack Lite, Sonic Solutions DVDit! SE, and the Sonic Solutions ReelDVD. Three Matrox DigiSuite MAX 7.0 platforms are available, and all three provide broadcast-quality analogue video and audio I/O, and optional SDI I/O. They differ only in terms of the compression formats used for editing. DigiSuite LX MAX provides native-DV and MPEG-2 I-frame 50Mb/s editing and is priced at US$5995/EUR7790/GB£4395. DigiSuite DTV MAX provides native-DV, DV50, and MPEG-2 I-frame 50Mb/s editing and is priced at US$7995/EUR10,395/GB£5770. DigiSuite LE MAX offers M-JPEG image quality and is priced at US$5995/EUR7790/GB£4395. The MAX card is also available as an upgrade option. See http://www.matrox.com/video.

Quantel Connects Clipbox to Avid NewsCutter and iQ to ITK Millennium Machine
Quantel is now offering an interface between the Quantel Clipbox video server and the Avid NewsCutter. Designed by Marquis Broadcast, the interface allows Avid NewsCutters to share material with transfer speeds at faster than real time. Quantel is also offering a new plug-in to allow its iQ platform to work with the 2k output of the ITK Millennium telecine machine. The Millennium machine can format 2k images onto a standard HD-SDI interface at 15 or 7.5fps, and the new HD to 2k plug-in rebuilds the 2k images for use in post production. The resolution co-existence of iQ allows it to work with both HD and 2k files at the same time. See http://www.quantel.com.

Linux Media Arts Taking Orders for New SD and HD Cards
Linux Media Arts has announced that its new SD-601 and HD cards are ready to be ordered. Both include Linux drivers and are bundled with NLE and 3D software, including 2 years of upgrade. The SD-601 card costs US$3395.95 and has a delivery time 2 weeks, and the HD card costs US$10,395.95 and has a delivery of 4 weeks. See http:// www.linuxmediaarts.com/hdtv.html.

Discreet ships smoke 5 High-Definition and 601 Editing and Finishing System
Discreet, a division of Autodesk, is now shipping smoke 5, the newest version of its real-time high-definition nonlinear editing and finishing system. smoke 5 is designed to optimise the power of the SGI Octane 2 platform, allowing work in HD and traditional standard definition formats on a single system. New features in smoke 5 include improved import support for the OMF files; new precision time-lined based Multi-Master Editing capabilities; and extended integration with other Discreet professional effects systems. See http://www.discreet.com.

Digital Voodoo Announces Compatibility with Apple Final Cut Pro 3
Digital Voodoo has announced the compatibility of its D1 Desktop 64 and Iridium series of capture and output cards with the Apple Final Cut Pro 3 NLE software. The D1 Desktop 64 series comprises PCI QuickTime cards for the Mac platform that offer uncompressed 10-bit SD capture to disk, while the Iridium HD series allows users to work with uncompressed 10-bit 4:2:2:4 or 4:4:4:4 dual link video directly in YUV colourspace. The D1 Desktop 64AV, with audio features for edit, retails at US$3495. Dual channel output, and output-only models are available. The Iridium HD retails for US$6995. See http://www.digitalvoodoo.net.

DAW news

Digidesign Announces High-Definition Pro Tools|HD Systems
Digidesign has released Pro Tools|HD, an all-new, high-definition Pro Tools system that offers multiple DSP power, comprehensive sample rate support, a high track count and I/O capacity, and extensive routing flexibility. Pro Tools|HD is available in three expandable core configurations ranging from 32 I/O channels and 96 simultaneous audio tracks, to 96 I/O channels and 128 simultaneous audio tracks, and must be used with at least one of the two new HD audio interface options that support 96kHz and 192kHz respectively. The system also supports three new peripherals options, namely the SYNC I/O master synchronisation device, the 8-channel PRE mic preamplifier, and the USB-powered MIDI I/O that features ten MIDI I/O ports and supports the soon-to-be-released Digidesign Time-Stamping for enhanced timing accuracy. Pro Tools|HD system pricing starts at US$7995 excluding an audio interface. See http://www.digidesign.com/sypha.

Cube-Tec Releases the AudioCube 5 Dell530 Workstation
Cube-Tec has released the AudioCube 5 Dell530 Workstation as an entry level addition to its AudioCube family of DAWs. This features dual 2GHz, 64-bit Xeon processors, a 36GB SCSI audio drive, a CD-RW drive, a DVD-ROM drive, a dual monitor card, external Ultra160 SCSI, and the Merging Technologies Mykerinos DSP board. It supports all AudioCube software, including CubeDVD-A, Quadriga, and the proprietary VPI mastering and restoration tools. It also fully supports SACD mastering. A 24-channel AudioCube 5 Dell530 will retail for less than US$12,000, including Steinberg Nuendo and Wavelab editors, and proprietary CubeRescue and RemoteHelp software. See http://www.cube-tec.com.

Tascam Unveils US-224 Digital Audio Workstation Controller
Tascam has unveiled the US-224 Digital Audio Workstation Controller that works with both Windows and Macintosh based platforms via USB port, and is compatible with applications that accept standard MIDI controller messages. Designed to provide a simple method of getting audio in and out of computers while offering control of the most commonly-used functions, the US-224 allows control over any number of software faders via four hardware faders that are selectable in banks. It also has a jog wheel, transport and control functions for sequencers and DAWs, and can support two inputs and two outputs of 16 or 24-bit audio simultaneously at 44.1 or 48kHz, via two balanced XLR and two unbalanced line/mic/hi-Z inputs, as well as S/PDIF I/O. The US-224 has an MSRP of US$375. See http://www.tascam.com.

Steinberg Announces VST System Link to Exploit Multiple Computer Power
Steinberg Media Technologies has announced its new cross-platform, cross-application VST System Link technology that allows Cubase VST and Nuendo users to combine the power of multiple computers. The link is established via a simple digital audio cable that uses a single bit of just one audio channel to connect and synchronise an infinite number of Mac or Windows computers. Each computer in a VST System Link network adds hard drives and increases processing power, with the result that users can potentially access as many audio tracks as desired, as many VST instruments as necessary, and as many MIDI channels as required, without the usual MIDI timing difficulties. See http://www.steinberg.net.

Emagic Offers Low-Latency EMI 2|6 Driver Update
The new driver update for the Emagic EMI 2|6 Windows USB audio interface now features latencies as low as 2ms using EASI or ASIO drivers. The update also features 96kHz sample rate support and Windows XP compatibility. EMI 2|6 owners can download the Windows driver update free of charge via the download section at http://www.emagic.de.

Roland Debuts VS-2480CD and VS-1824CD Digital Studio Workstations
Roland has debuted the VS-2480CD self-contained workstation that offers 24-track/24-bit digital recording, 64-channel automated mixing, built-in effects processing, an 80GB internal hard drive, an internal CD-RW drive, the ability to import Wave files, and a new CD Capture function that allows users to import selected audio directly from CD. The workstation also has motorised faders, mouse-based control, and connections for an optional ASCII keyboard and an external VGA monitor. The new VS-1824CD 24-bit Digital Studio Workstation is a tabletop system based on the VS-1880 V-Studio. It offers 288 virtual tracks, 28-channel automated digital mixing, onboard effects including COSM Guitar Amp and Microphone Modelling, and a mastering toolkit. It supports 8-track record or 18-track playback from a 10GB drive, and is the first portable V-Studio to offer a built-in high-speed CD-R/RW drive for data backup and audio CD creation. See http://www.rolandus.com.

Tascam Unveils PocketStudio 5 Portable Multitrack Digital Recorder
Tascam has unveiled the PocketStudio 5 portable multitrack digital recorder that uses Compact Flash card as the recording medium. It supports four audio tracks, and has an internal MIDI synthesiser module that can play back sequences along with the audio tracks. A final stereo mix can be created in MP3 format and sent to a personal computer via the built-in USB port, and this capability also allows the Pocketstudio 5 to be used as a portable MP3 player. Its recording and editing capabilities including auto punch in/out, copy/paste editing of audio and MIDI tracks using bars and beats, and track bouncing. The PocketStudio 5 runs for two hours using standard AA-sized alkaline batteries, includes an AC power supply, a 32MB Compact Flash card, and a headset microphone to supplement its built-in condenser mic. See http://www.tascam.com.

Digidesign Announces the Mbox Portable Pro Tools Micro Studio
Digidesign has announced the Mbox portable micro project/home studio that can be used with any approved USB-compatible computer. It comprises Pro Tools 5.2 LE software and a small two-channel USB audio peripheral that has two TRS/XLR analogue inputs with Focusrite mic preamps and 48V phantom power, S/PDIF I/O, front-panel gain knobs and a source selection switch, two analogue inserts and zero-latency monitoring, and analogue output via two 1/4" rear-panel jacks and 1/8" and 1/4" headphone jacks with dedicated volume control. The included Pro Tools 5.2 LE software also supports the DigiStudio collaborative tool that allows session media to be shared with other Pro Tools users via the Internet, including raw audio tracks, MIDI data, plug-in information and automation. Mbox is expected to ship in Spring 2002 with an MSRP of US$495. The initial release will be Mac-only, with Windows-compatibility to follow shortly. See http://www.digidesign.com/sypha.

Steinberg Launches WaveLab 4.0 for Windows
Steinberg Media Technologies has launched version 4.0 of its WaveLab sound design and audio editing application for Windows. Among the new features are ASIO support, WDM driver support, a new set of high-quality plug-ins, support for more audio file formats, Data CD and Mixed Mode CD burning, a complete set of real-time and offline audio monitors, a backup tool, a CD label editor, a pitch corrector, and a DTMF generator for telephony applications. WaveLab 4.0 costs US$549.99. See http://www.steinberg.net.

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SYPHAnews is sponsored by:

Avid Technology, Inc.
delivers the solutions that "Make, Manage and Move Media!"

Video Forum 2002
The UK's biggest technology event for Production, Post, New Media and Streaming.
5 - 7 February 2002
Hall 1, Wembley Exhibition Centre
9.30am - 5.00pm
See SYPHA at stand A30 (Sounds Expo)

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