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SYPHAnews - 30th September 2002

Welcome to SYPHAnews - a 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 (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!! Welcome to our new subscribers who signed up at the IBC 2002 Convention - it was good to meet so many visitors from the Middle East and Asia. We'd like to thank those who visited us for their interest and feedback, and apologies to those we missed because we were combing the aisles in search of new products.

For anyone who did not get the announcement, the all-new DAW Buyers Guide is now launched. All information has been completely renewed as of September 2002, and will be updated continuously.

Camera news

JVC Launches New Professional DV Camcorder
JVC has launched the GY-DV5000E, a 3x 1/2 inch IT CCD camcorder, as part of its next generation of professional DV products. These incorporate a new dual standard DV/mini DV tape mechanism, which offers over 4 hours of recording time, improved tape running stability, high-speed search and FF/REW, and faster and more accurate tape cuing. The GY-DV5000 extends the performance and recording capabilities of its predecessor, the GY-DV500, and offers the streaming option developed for the current GY-DV300 Streamcorder. The GY-DV5000 is due to be available by November 2002 with a guide price (head-only) of GB£4485 / 6995 Euro. See http://www.jvcpro.co.uk

Panasonic Shows HD Frame Rate Converter
Panasonic Broadcast showed the production version of its AJ-FRC27 HD frame rate converter. This is designed to integrate the Panasonic AJ-HDC27FE DVCPRO HD camera/recorder with existing 24/25fps progressive scan based post production systems. Up to 100 minutes of variable frame rate progressive footage can be recorded into the AJ-FRC27, which then performs any required signal format and time base conversion to provide the appropriate fast-motion or slow-motion effect sequence. The combination of AJ-HDC27FE and AJ-FRC27 emulates the variable frame rate character of film camera followed by telecine production systems. Typical output of the AJ-FRC27 is 1920 x 1080 progressive scan at 24/25fps as recorded to the Panasonic AJ-HD3700H D-5 HD VTR, and other supported outputs include 1080/60i (2:3 pulldown) and 1080/50i (2:2 pulldown). The AJ-FRC27 also has applications in field production, and offers producers the ability to immediately view the results of an 'undercranked' or 'overcranked' off-speed effect. See http://www.panasonic-broadcast.com

Sony Introduces Next Generation HDCAM Camera
Sony has introduced the HDW-750P HDCAM camera. This is smaller and lighter than its Digital Betacam predecessor, and has been developed for the needs of European television production. The HDW-750P shoots 25fps at either 50i or 25P, making it compatible with existing PAL post-production and transmission equipment. The camera offers many core CineAlta features and a Memory Stick to store camera set-ups. Options include a RAM card for continuous 7s loop recording and a built-in down converter, giving SDI or PAL output which facilitates viewing on standard definition monitors live on location. see http://www.sonybiz.net

Ikegami Announces New Disk Camcorder with QuickTime Capability
Ikegami has announced the DNS-301W disk camcorder, a new member of the Editcam family, with newly designed 3x 2/3 inch AIT CCD sensors, 12-bit A/D and switchable 16:9 and 4:3 aspect ratio. It consists of a recording unit, which writes QuickTime formatted data onto FieldPak removable hard drives, and has a recording time of 90 minutes per 20GB FieldPak at DV25 quality. It features an IEEE1394 interface and supports nonlinear features such as intelligent navigation, retro loop (180s), time lapse and single frame recording. FieldPaks can be connected to nonlinear editing systems, such as Final Cut Pro, via interface adapters, and footage can be edited directly without loss of time and quality. The camcorder can also be connected to a DV VTR for simultaneous recording to disk and tape. See http://www.ikegami.de

Ikegami Announces New Broadcast Camera
Ikegami has announced the HL-60W broadcast camera with newly designed 3x AIT CCD sensors, 12-bit A/D, up to 38-bit internal digital processing and switchable 16:9 and 4:3 aspect ratio. The camera is compatible with current analogue and digital professional recording systems using different interfaces, and can be used for ENG applications, as well as in a studio or OB van environment. Multicore and triax transmission systems are available for ENG and EFP use. User specific adjustments can be saved in the camera head or on a memory-card. See http://www.ikegami.de

Thomson Grass Valley Introduces Digital Wireless Camera System
Thomson Grass Valley has introduced a digital wireless camera system for its LDK 100 and LDK 200 cameras. It uses video compression technology with 4:2:2 10-bit signal processing and DVB-T COFDM transmission to provide high-quality digital video images with very low latency. It features a non-directional antenna and a camera-located long-life battery supply. On the receiving side, it uses a single unit to provide a generous shooting area. For more ambitious applications, users can deploy a distributed network of receiving antenna management units to provide wide coverage at low transmission power. The system switches automatically between multiple antennas to extend the respective shooting area. The connection between base station and antenna management units uses conventional 8mm triax cable that can be extended out to a length of 400m. Users can mix, match, and genlock the wireless camera system with other wired triax cameras for seamless operation alongside existing cameras. See http://www.thomsongrassvalley.com

Sony Stages European HDCAM Roadshow Featuring New HDW-750P Camcorder
Sony and Scene to Screen magazine are staging a European HDCAM roadshow tailored to European TV production needs and budgets. The tour will feature the recently launched HDW-750P camcorder, together with the HDW-2000 VTR range. See http://www.sonybiz.net

NLE news

IBC Sees Interchange Bloom
The recent International Broadcasting Convention held in Amsterdam was most notable for the number of announcements concerning interchange. The AAF Association and Pro-MPEG Forum jointly sponsored an Interoperability Centre to demonstrate the benefits of the advanced authoring format (AAF) format and the material exchange format (MXF). AAF is designed for the interchange of video, audio and metadata, with the aim of being the core open standard for multimedia authoring and post production, and is one of a number of formats supported by MXF - designed as a common file format for programme exchange.

Companies demonstrating the benefits of AAF included BBC R&D, Incite Multimedia, Metaglue, Panasonic, Pandora, Quantel, Snell & Wilcox and Thomson, for applications including field acquisition, tape conform into AAF-compliant workstations, graphics export, effects compositing export with history, colour grading, an AAF-based library, an AAF conform list and an AAF archive. A live demonstration was also given of the transfer of full timeline editing information from the Leitch dpsVelocityQ NLE to a Quantel SQserver system. The AAF Association is to hold a number of awareness events, the next being in Los Angeles on November 19th, and in London in February 2003. See http://www.aafassociation.org

Among the products announced as supporting or planning to support MXF interoperability, were the Avid NewsCutter news editing system, the Leitch VRNet server, the Matrox DigiSuite DTV-D10 and DigiServer DTV-D10 cards, the Pinnacle Systems Media Stream Server, Liquid Edit and Vortex news platform, Seachange BMC media servers, the SGI Media Server for Broadcast, and the Sony e-VTR network-capable MPEG IMX VTR, XPRI NLE and MAV-555A server. See http://www.pro-mpeg.org

Other announcements of note included one by Sony and Incite concerning shooting directly on disk and then editing in the field with laptops or home-type computers, using the new Sony DSR-DU1 portable video disk unit and the new Incite Remote Producer and Incite Newsmaker. See http://www.inciteonline.com. Another concerned the new Marquis MARGATE AQ media transfer tool that is designed for Avid NewsCutter Effects, Newscutter XP and MediaComposer DV users who need to access DV material held on Quantel servers. See http://www.marquisbroadcast.com

DVS Joins Khronos Group to Develop Open-Standard API
DVS has announced that it is the first European-based company invited by the Khronos Group to become a Promoting Member to help define a platform-independent tool that will include audio, graphics, video, synchronisation and metadata. The Khronos Group is a consortium of digital media companies that exists to promote the deployment and development of open-standard APIs to enable authoring and playback of dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. It maintains that while other industries such as graphics, music or networking have had open APIs for years, a tool to seamlessly combine all areas of digital media has up until now been missing. See http://www.khronos.org

Avid Embarks on Tour of Broadcasters in the UK and Ireland
Avid Technology Europe has embarked on a second tour of broadcasters in the UK and Ireland, demonstrating its range of broadcast products from a specially commissioned and equipped vehicle, dubbed 'The Avid Broadcast Bus'. This year the Broadcast Bus houses the majority of the Avid product range, including the Avid Unity family, the Avid NewsCutter family, an Avid Media Composer, an Avid|DS HD, Avid Xpress DV v3.5 and a Digidesign Pro Tools system. A series of Avid Xpress DV workshops will also take place. The Bus will be visiting 14 broadcasters in 11 cities until 24 October 2002 and visitors can register for the event at http://www.avid.co.uk

Quantel Launches Into Mainstream with QEdit Pro
Quantel has launched a major new addition to its 'generationQ for Post' product range. Aimed at the mainstream NLE market, QEdit Pro is a complete system that combines specialist Quantel hardware with a fast PC platform to produce a multi-format NLE that exploits the scalability of the generationQ technology base. The embedded Quantel hardware is contained on three PCI cards, and includes specialist disk handling technology and hardware-assist for key functions including 10-bit video I/O. Although QEdit Pro is designed as an SD effects editing workhorse, it also offers resolution co-existent compositing with material up to 2k, and 24P versioning to PAL and NTSC. An HD I/O option supports mastering to cover the full range of HD formats, and the system is also fully AAF compliant. QEdit Pro runs the same software with the same timeline editing and effects toolsets as both the Quantel iQ and eQ, and includes Quantel Paintbox and QScribe character generator. The full range of generationQ plug-ins is also available. QEdit Pro has an expected starting price of around GB£45,000 and will be available through a new dealer channel as well as direct from Quantel. See http://www.quantel.com

Leitch Ships dpsVelocityQ
Leitch Technology is shipping the dpsVelocityQ multi-stream nonlinear editing system. This combines the dpsQuattrus multi-layer, realtime nonlinear editing hardware with an enhanced version of dpsVelocity software to create a fully-integrated, multi-layer NLE solution. Features include mixable uncompressed and compressed video, realtime simultaneous playback of four video streams and six graphics layers, and the Q3DX4 quad-channel realtime 3D DVE. It supports networking as standard, with video media accessible from system or network storage, as well as from the dedicated on-board Ultra160 storage controller. The package also includes the eyeon Digital Fusion DFX+ compositing software, which is directly integrated into the dpsVelocityQ timeline. dpsVelocityQ is available from authorised Leitch post production resellers as a fully-integrated turnkey system, or as a hardware/software bundle for installation in a Microsoft Windows 2000 or Windows XP Professional computer. See http://www.leitch.com

DVS Introduces SD Cards for Mac and Windows
DVS has introduced two new cards, one for Mac hosts and one for Windows. The Mac version, Ringo, is a PCI card that supports uncompressed D1 and D5 and includes an integrated colour-space converter, wide-ranging I/O facilities, a 64-bit PCI bus and RS422 master/slave control. Based on proprietary QuickTime codecs, the board is fully compatible with Mac OS applications such as Apple Final Cut Pro, Adobe After Effects, and Discreet Combustion. The Windows version, Mado, supports QuickTime and AVI, and is compatible with Adobe Premiere 6.5, with special plug-ins to support eyeon Digital Fusion and Adobe After Effects soon to be announced. See http://www.dvs.de

Incite Announces New Products for News and Post
Incite Multimedia has announced a range of new solutions for news and post production. The new GUI for version 3.0 of Incite Editor is designed to be stylish and friendly, with an editors toolkit, realtime video and audio effects, advanced audio editing features, and compositing features, as well as built-in media management and task server technology. All Incite products, both software-based or hardware based, use Windows networking, and can take full advantage of 100BaseT, Gigabit (NAS) and Storage Area Network (SAN) environments. The Incite Newsroom combines the advanced Incite News for acquisition, editing titling and effects, with Incite Newsmaker, a software-based simple-cuts editor that uses proxy video for browsing and creating simple sequences. The higher-powered Incite Editor Studio offers compositing effects, advanced audio editing and integration with third party applications, and can interact transparently with the other Incite applications through shared storage. All editing sessions and the whole newsroom facility can be efficiently managed with an automated, MOS-style data structure. See http://www.inciteonline.com

Quantel Announces Workflow Improvements for iQ
Quantel has announced a high-resolution assistant to iQ for storage and processing-hungry day-to-day tasks. iO for iQ loads material as it comes off a data scanner, telecine or VTR, and re-patches the media set immediately to a production iQ for creative work. A single data scanner can therefore be used in conjunction with iO for iQ to serve multiple iQ suites, without bottlenecks. iO for iQ also has built-in auto conform using AAF, allows viewing and quality control of media at full resolution, and has a toolset for pre-selection and compiling, as well as multi-format output publishing and archiving capability, all entirely independent from the production iQ. Quantel has also announced an interface that uses SDI or HD-SDI to loop video through Digital Vision DVNR/Valhall image processing and colour correction workstations directly from/to the Quantel iQ disks. The Quantel system remains 'live' throughout, giving the colourist interactive access to its full editing and effects toolset within the colour correction process. In a separate move, Quantel and Pandora unveiled the 'Freeflow' joint development to enable realtime, in-context manipulation of 2k imagery. This comprises an ultra-high speed 2.5Gb/s fibre link between the Quantel iQ media platform, Pandora Pogle controller and its PiXi colour processing engine, and AAF metadata exchange to ensure that all elements keep perfectly in step with each other, and each is precisely aware of changes as they happen. See http://www.quantel.com

Panasonic Introduces Quickcutter Version 2.0
Panasonic Broadcast has introduced a major software upgrade to its Quickcutter nonlinear editing system with version 2.0. This upgrade offers more than 20 new features including DVCPRO/DVCPRO50 hybrid editing in the same sequence, configurable dual monitor outputs, file (clip/sequence) exchange between systems, EDL import (CMX3600 format) and export (CMX3600 plus BVE9000 format), track lock editing, still picture capture, support for Boris F/X version 5.0 plug-in software, 50 picture-in-picture motion patterns, new Speed Clip creation by percentage of speed, animation and slide title editing, improved audio editing capabilities, sequential image file import and 16:9 aspect ratio capability. Panasonic has also introduced ClipCopy50 software which offers rapid networking of native DVCPRO/DVCPRO50 media between a number of industry-standard news servers, permitting bi-directional FTP transfer of video files with Quickcutters. See http://www.panasonic-broadcast.com

Canopus Unveils DVStorm2
Canopus has unveiled the DVStorm2 realtime nonlinear editing solution, which builds on the strength of its predecessor but is being offered at the same price. New features include 28 realtime 2D/3D transitions and effects including new 3D picture-in-picture transition and 15 Xplode 3D transitions, new video filters, such as white balance and black balance for additional colour correction capabilities, and improved capture features with single-pass scan and capture. It also allows for simultaneous capture from multiple DV inputs with the addition of an OHCI card. DVStorm2 includes StormEncoder, the Canopus realtime MPEG hardware encoding module, as well as its family of MPEG tools. Also included is Ulead DVD Workshop SE for authoring. DVStorm2 is due to be available in October 2002 with an MSRP of GB£790 excluding tax. A DVStorm2 Plus version including Adobe Premiere 6.5 and a StormBay breakout box has an MSRP of GB£1015, and an upgrade is available for DVStorm owners. See http://www.canopus.com

Digital Voodoo/Bluefish444 and Linux Media Arts Announce Opencube HD
Digital Voodoo/Bluefish444 and Linux Media Arts have announced the Linux-based Opencube HD film and video system will use the HD and SD-601 uncompressed video cards from Digital Voodoo/Bluefish444 on the Linux Media Arts Cinterra production system. Opencube HD features the display and playback of up to 90 minutes of uncompressed HDTV material in real time, using native formats without the need to import, transform or compress the video. It supports both standard definition and high definition video, as well as 2k, has DV and DVCPRO codecs, up to six AES/EBU audio channels and the MXF video exchange format. Linux Media Arts is developing the driver set for the full line of uncompressed Digital Voodoo/Bluefish444 video I/O cards. See http://www.lmahd.com

Pinnacle Systems Announces Thunder Version 5.2 with NLE Support
Pinnacle Systems has announced the availability of version 5.2 of its Thunder clip and still server with new interconnectivity capabilities. Thunder can now exchange files with the Pinnacle Liquid NLE, as well as most QuickTime-enabled editing systems including Pinnacle CinéWave. The new version also provides new automated file conversion features through an enhanced 'watch' folder. See http://www.pinnaclesys.com

Gee Offers Instant Editing while Recording to Server
Gee Broadcast is offering a new Instant Editing capability that allows material to be edited and played back while it is still being recorded onto a Geevs server. Material can be accessed by other Geevs channels either in the same chassis or via a GaSSS SAN system, and highlight clips can be created within Geevs, or in combination with Incite Editor stations for more complex multilayer editing in real time. See http://www.geebroadcast.co.uk

The electronic Farm Releases Mule V2.2
The electronic Farm has released version 2.2 of its Mule nonlinear SD/HD editing and effects software. This latest version offers customer-driven enhancements and many new features. The new VFX module incorporates the Primatte keyer, advanced layer-based colour correction, a growing range of over 30 filters, tracking and stabilising, a comprehensive text module, animation graphs, schematic view and VFX timeline views. Archiving is supported to videotape, with the user having the option to include the associated project settings and setups. Mule has an entry price of 60,000 Euro for a complete SD turnkey solution based on a SGI Fuel with approximately 6 hours of uncompressed storage. The deluxe HD Octane 2 version is priced at around 130,000 Euro with approximately 8 hours of uncompressed HD storage. See http://www.electronicfarm.com

Incite Multimedia and Thomson Grass Valley Develop Integrated System
Incite Multimedia and Thomson Grass Valley have agreed to develop integrated support for the Profile format with Incite Editor 3.0 and Incite Media Manager. The plan is to allow browsing, previewing and inserting Profile media assets using Incite applications for media management, nonlinear editing and compositing, within the Profile SAN Architecture. The Incite Editor and Profile are both seen as direct clients on the SAN, allowing immediate access and interchange, and editors can use Incite media management tools to browse and preview native Profile files directly from the SAN, even during acquisition, and then drag and drop them into the Incite timeline for realtime editing, compositing and export. The native Profile files are transparently 'wrapped' as standard AVI files in realtime, without recompression or decompression, and when the project is ready for delivery, Incite Editor exports the sequence in realtime to Profile-compatible media such as MPEG ES (Elementary Stream) or DV DIF. See http://www.thomsongrassvalley.com or http://www.inciteonline.com

Eagle Research Launches Studiopro
Eagle Research has introduced studiopro, a multi-camera, recording and editing system in a single chassis for broadcast studio applications. It offers an intuitive interface, allows all footage to be digitised directly from up to 7 cameras, and uses a standard vision mixer to generate an edit decision list. In addition, there is a software application which allows further enhanced editing to be performed simultaneously. See http://www.eagle.gr

Media 100 Develops Certified Training for the 844/X
Media 100 has developed a three-day training program for its 844/X editing system, to be offered by Media 100 and its certified training partners. The course covers a broad range of 844/X functions and has been designed for 844/X customers and freelancers who have a background in post-production and a familiarity with nonlinear systems. On completion, trainees will be certified from Media 100 and will receive the comprehensive 844/X fundamentals manual. Currently the training is available at Media 100 headquarters in the greater-Boston area, Soho Editors in London and Laguun in Berlin, with additional facilities planned in the US, Europe, Asia/Pacific and Latin America. See http://www.media100.com

DAW news

Emagic Releases Logic Platinum 5 for Mac OS X
Emagic has released the first version of Logic Platinum 5 for Mac OS X, as well as Mac OS X hardware drivers for its Unitor8, AMT8 and MT4 MIDI and the EMI 2|6 portable USB audio interface. Registered users of Logic Platinum 5 can download the free Mac OS X version at http://www.emagic.de/english/support/download/lpx.html

Digidesign Introduces Pro Tools 5.3.3 for Pro Tools|HD on Windows XP
Digidesign has introduced Pro Tools TDM 5.3.3 software for Pro Tools|HD on Windows XP. As well as many of the features previously released in Pro Tools 5.3.1 software for Macintosh computers, this version includes integrated full remote control of the PRE 8-channel mic preamp via the Pro Tools software interface and Digidesign control surfaces, a multi-DSP 48-bit mixer, and increased sync I/O options. It also offers Windows XP users improved workflow efficiency through true simultaneous sharing of media assets. See http://www.digidesign.com

Digidesign Announces SCSI|128 and MediaDock Storage Solutions
Digidesign has announced the SCSI|128 kit SCSI solution for Pro Tools|HD, and the MediaDock removable storage system. SCSI|128 offers 128 tracks of record and playback with Pro Tools|HD on both Mac and Windows, or 64 audio tracks on Pro Tools|24 MIX, when used with LVD drives. In addition, its built-in LVD support results in improved data integrity, and allows for longer cable lengths of up to 12.5m. The MSRP for SCSI|128 is US$695. The DigiDrive MediaDock Line consists of four products, namely MediaDock Shuttle|36, MediaDock Shuttle|73, MediaDock II chassis and MediaDock II+ chassis. MediaDock Shuttles can be swapped between DigiDrive and Avid MediaDock chassis without rebooting the computer (although Pro Tools must be relaunched), and up to eight Shuttles per channel can be daisy-chained. The DigiDrive MediaDock II chassis provides removable storage with a compact form factor, and with the additional StorCase receiver, MediaDock II+ becomes a record, playback, backup, and transfer station. The MediaDock's independent SCSI buses allow for configuration according to specific needs, including keeping audio and video on separate channels. See http://www.digidesign.com

CreamWare Announces the Modular III Synthesiser for SCOPE Fusion
CreamWare has announced that the Modular III modular synthesiser system for its DSP systems, such as Luna, PowerSampler, Pulsar or SCOPE/SP, is now available. This third generation of the Modular synthesiser offers over 220 modules, along with more than 100 complete synthesiser patches providing a total of around 800 sounds. The newly-developed Modular Remote Control allows even the most complex Modular patches to be operated as easily as a mini-synthesiser. As part of the introduction of the Modular III, CreamWare is holding a contest for users to submit their own patches with a chance to win 200 Euros worth of CreamWare software. The Modular III is priced at 249 Euro. See http://www.creamware.de

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