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SYPHAnews - 30 January 2004

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 http://SYPHAonline.com.

We will deliver this service to you every month - unless there is some major news we think you should know about sooner. To unsubscribe, please follow the instructions below.

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STOP PRESS!! In case you missed our newsflash, the all-new Pro Camera Guide is now launched at http://SYPHAonline.com/CAMwebsite/CAMintro.html. It gives you FREE online access to our database of over 100 broadcast and professional cameras and camcorders. The new edition offers a search page with quick search by model and manufacturer, plus a detailed search by criteria including application, recording format, recording media, body type, interchangeable lenses, aspect ratio, CCD number/size/type, frame rate, TV standard, audio channels, weight, cable/transmission type, digital interface, and cost range with/without essentials.

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Camera news

Sony Announces Release Date and Support for XDCAM
Sony has announced that production models of its XDCAM optical disc camcorders and players will be begin shipping in March 2004. The company is offering a seven-year warranty on the Optical Drive Powertrain Systems (BRD-P1 and BRD-P2) inside the XDCAM camcorder to ensure its longevity. Like all of its new digital cameras, the standard warranty coverage for remedial repair of the XDCAM Optical Disc Products is one year parts and labour from date of purchase. A single professional-grade XDCAM disc holds around 90 minutes of 25Mb/s material, 45 minutes shot at 50Mb/s, 55 minutes at 40Mb/s, and 75 minutes at 30Mb/s. The first generation of software released for the XDCAM camera in March will not include the system's ability to create and manage video proxy files that carry metadata about each particular scene. These low-resolution versions can be used to select and edit scenes quickly, then conform them later with the full resolution files also stored on the camera's Blue-laser optical disc. This capability will be available in a subsequent software release slated for 25 August 2004. See http://www.sony.com/professional

NLE news

Avid to Support WM9 in Xpress Pro and Media Composer Adrenaline
Avid Technology has announced plans to support the Microsoft Windows Media 9 Series in future versions of the Avid Xpress Pro and Media Composer Adrenaline products. Similar to the export option for Windows Media 9 Series currently available in the Avid DS Nitris system, both Avid Xpress Pro and Media Composer Adrenaline systems will include this capability, allowing filmmakers to output their projects in high-definition with a single click using Windows Media Video 9 (WMV HD) - a component of the Windows Media 9 Series platform. At this year's Sundance Film Festival, five films are being screened digitally in Windows Media 9 Series. This capability in Avid systems will allow filmmakers to up-res their projects to WMV HD, store them on a server, and then screen them to large audiences. Even for projects originating in DV25, the resulting WMV HD output is remarkably high quality, and filmmakers will no longer have to waste time on expensive tape-to-film conversions. See http://www.avid.com

Apple Introduces Final Cut Express 2
Apple has introduced Final Cut Express 2, the next major release of its digital video editing software. Final Cut Express 2 includes some of the most popular features of Final Cut Pro 4 within a simplified user interface. Fine-tuned for Mac OS X version 10.3 'Panther,' Final Cut Express 2 features RT Extreme for real-time compositing and effects, an enhanced user interface, real-time colour correction tools and enhanced audio editing capabilities. Final Cut Express 2 is available for a suggested retail price of USD299, with an upgrade price of USD99 for current Final Cut Express customers. See http://www.apple.com

Pinnacle Unveils Upgrades and New Features for Liquid Family
Pinnacle Systems has unveiled Pinnacle Liquid 5.6, an extensive upgrade to the Liquid blue, Liquid chrome and Liquid silver video editing systems. This includes numerous enhancements for DVD authoring, efficient workflow and support for networked environments. Liquid 5.6 supports Liquid blue for multi-format broadcast environments, Liquid chrome for real-time post settings, and Liquid silver for MPEG-2 post editing. With Liquid 5.6, the entire Liquid family now runs on Windows XP. Liquid 5.6 adds 1394/DV capture and playback as well as real-time slow-motion. Liquid chrome 5.6 also features a real-time frame buffer for video output from Pinnacle Commotion Pro, Adobe After Effects and Discreet combustion, as well as ASIO drivers for no-latency audio output from the Pinnacle Steinberg Nuendo. The Liquid 5.6 upgrade for Liquid chrome is a free to registered customers. The upgrade for Liquid blue is USD1495 MSRP. Upgrades for Liquid silver will be available soon for USD695 MSRP. See http://www.pinnaclesys.com/liquid

Pinnacle Announces Free Wavelab Essential with Liquid Edition
Pinnacle Systems is offering all purchasers of a full version of Liquid Edition and Liquid Edition Pro. A free copy of the Steinberg WaveLab Essential digital audio editor, worth GBP179. The offer runs until 31 March 2004. Based on Steinberg WaveLab 4.0 technology, WaveLab Essential enhances the performance of Liquid Edition with a range of powerful editing and mastering tools. See http://www.pinnaclesys.com

In-sync Announces Loki Product Line
In-Sync has announced the Loki plug and play real time uncompressed SD-SDI board and software solution. The software for Loki is a new Speed Razor 5.6 version. Loki hardware is specifically designed for in-sync by AJA. It plays back 10- and 8-bit YUV, and allows colour to be mixed and matched in real time on the same timeline. It supports capture of DV via IEEE-1394 and output to SDI, allowing the user to mix uncompressed graphics with DV footage and output to SDI in real time without DV artefacts. It plays RGBA graphic files in real time, supports 24-bit stills, is switchable from NTSC to PAL and currently only handles NTSC drop frame or PAL. Loki plays back, in real time, files created on Matrox DigiSuite, Targa 3000, Targa 2000, and Pinnacle Reeltime, as well as a host of legacy component cards in real time. The Loki bundle comes complete with Speed Razor 5.6 software, Loki uncompressed SD-SDI capture hardware, and AES/EBU audio break out cables. Loki is available for USD3999. Crossgrades for existing and non-in-sync supported customers are available. See http://www.in-sync.com

Media 100 Announces 844/X Version 3
Media 100 has announced version 3.0 software for the 844/X. Dubbed by Media 100 as the 'visual effects' release, version 3.0 offers many new real-time, multi-stream capabilities, including advanced keying; 3D DVEs (digital video effects); shadow and glow effects; XML-based metadata interchange; and new performance optimisations for editing longer-form, layer-intensive projects. The company plans to use XML-based metadata interchange support as a platform for future 844/X releases. The goal is to give users a higher degree of metadata interchange with third-party content design solutions. The new format support also provides a basis for working with other metadata formats such as AAF. See http://www.media100.com

DAW news

Apple Introduces Logic Pro 6 and Logic Express 6
Apple has streamlined its professional audio production software line by announcing Logic Pro 6 for professional musicians and Logic Express 6 for students and educators. Logic Pro 6 consolidates 12 pre-existing products into one comprehensive package. It includes the Logic Platinum audio recording and sequencer application, and the entire line of 53 audio DSP plug-ins and professional-quality software instruments. It is designed to provide a recording studio in a box, with everything required to compose, record, edit and mix music, including professional software instruments, multitrack recorders, mixing desks, and sound effect processors. It also includes the ability to create 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound, support for up to 128 audio tracks, virtually unlimited input channels and a sample rate of up to 192kHz. Logic Express 6 provides a basic set of professional tools for music composition and production. Logic Pro 6 and Logic Express 6 will be available in March for a suggested retail price of USD999 and USD299 respectively. See http://www.apple.com/software/pro/logic

Steinberg Launches Steinberg Media Solutions Software/Hardware
Steinberg, the Audio Group of Pinnacle Systems, has announced a new line of integrated audio software/hardware solutions for desktop studios, mobile recording, audio editing and more. Each product in the Steinberg Media Solutions line will include Cubase music production software, as well as a high-quality media interface. The first product to be released in this new range is Cubase System|4, comprising the MI4 media interface, and the virtual music studio Cubase SL 2.0. Several other Steinberg Media Solutions products are planned for release in 2004, and each will see a hardware unit paired with Steinberg professional audio software. These include Cubase System|2, which will feature MI2, an entry USB interface that uses the same quality components as the new MI4 interface. Cubase System|10 will feature a state of the art FireWire-based 10 in/10 out interface, offering facilities tailored to the needs of larger studio environments. Customers will be able to use the hardware units with other audio software on both PCs and Macs, thanks to the supplied ASIO, WDM and CoreAudio drivers. See http://www.steinberg.net

Steinberg Announces VST Integration Interface
Steinberg, the Audio Group of Pinnacle Systems, has announced the launch of a new integration interface to enhance programming for its DAW products to third parties. The VST Module Architecture allows the programming of MIDI effect plug-ins for Steinberg Nuendo and Cubase SX/SL/SE sequencers. The VST Module Architecture 1.0 SDK is available for download. Cubase and Nuendo include a number of MIDI effects, including plug-ins such as an arpeggiator, and a MIDI Delay effect and a transposer. A freeware wrapper adds support for Cakewalk MIDI plug-ins. The new interface will open up MIDI effects to the wider programming community, which Steinberg hopes will encourage a trend like that following the release of the first VST SDK when a plethora of new VST instruments and virtual effects were released. The VST Module Architecture is an object-oriented, cross-platform and compiler-independent interface model, with the source code being supplied in the C++ language. See http://www.steinberg.net

Digital Audio Wave Launches AMD Opteron Processor-Based 64-Bit DAWs
Digital Audio Wave has announced an all-new line of digital audio workstations. The DAWin-64 is a 4U rack-mountable system with dual 64-bit AMD Opteron processors model 248, four 74GB Western Digital 10000rpm Raptor SATA drives powered by a 3ware Escalade 8506 series RAID controller, and a Matrox graphics card. The AMD Opteron processor-based platform offers 32-bit performance and native 64-bit compatibility. In addition to USB and FireWire I/O, DAWin-64 offers line in and out connections, a mic input and CD inputs, and comes in a flexible tower configuration. See http://www.digitalaudiowave.com

M-Audio Ships FireWire Audiophile Mobile Audio/MIDI Interface
M-Audio has announced shipment of the FireWire Audiophile interface for Windows and Macintosh computers. The FireWire Audiophile is a 4 x 6 24-bit/96kHz mobile audio/MIDI interface designed to take full advantage of the high bandwidth and ultra-low latency of FireWire. It offers a compact design, rugged steel construction, and powering via either a laptop's 6-pin FireWire bus or the included DC power supply. FireWire Audiophile features two in, four out of analogue RCA, S/PDIF I/O, AC-3 and DTS pass-through of surround encoded material, and 1 x 1 MIDI I/O. The integrated software mixer provides ultra-low latency ASIO direct monitoring and flexible routing options. The combination of virtual aux sends on all channels and aux output assign, for example, allows for dedicated headphone mixes and sends to external effects. It also offers a high-powered stereo headphone output with front-panel momentary A/B switching between two selectable sources. In addition to independent headphone volume, the assignable level controller allows users to adjust levels for output, input, software return or aux send right from the front panel. FireWire Audiophile has an MSRP of USD349.95. See http://www.m-audio.com

Digidesign Announces DigiDelivery for File Exchange via Web
Digidesign, a division of Avid Technology, has announced DigiDelivery for global file transfer. This combines a simple software utility with an industrial-grade server appliance, to allow users to securely exchange any kind of digital file of virtually any size with anyone in the world. With DigiDelivery installed on an Ethernet network, DSL or cable modem, users may drag and drop files to send a delivery, or click a link in an email to receive a delivery. There is no need for recipients to enter IP addresses, usernames, or passwords. DigiDelivery is available preinstalled on a choice of two network appliances to suit the user's needs and budget. Systems requirement include an Ethernet Internet connection via a router, cable modem, or DSL modem, and a static externally-addressable IP address. Deliveries may be sent or received with Mac OS X- or Windows XP-based workstations. DigiDelivery has very specific network configuration requirements. For a complete list of requirements and sample installation configurations, see http://www.digidelivery.net

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SYPHAnews is sponsored by:

Apple
Professional video and audio production technologies:
Final Cut Pro,
DVD Studio Pro, Shake and Logic

Avid Technology
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Quantel
Next generation solutions for post, graphics, news and live production

Steinberg
Innovative and user-friendly computer-based music production for musicians, composers and producers

Video Forum
10-12 February 2004 Halls 1-2,
Wembley Exhibition Centre, London, UK

ShowBiz Expo Entertainment Technology World
Conference:
3-6 March 2004
Expo:
4-6 March 2004
Penn Plaza Pavilion/
Hotel Pennsylvania, NYC, USA

NAB2004
Conferences:
17-22 April 2004
Exhibits:
19-22 April 2004
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

AES 116th Convention
8-11 May 2004
Messe Berlin, Germany

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