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SYPHAnews - 31st October 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.

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Camera news

Panasonic Wins Technical Emmy for VariCam HD Cinema Camera
The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences has presented Matsushita Electric Industrial Company Ltd (Panasonic) with a Technical Emmy Award for its development of the AJ-HDC27 VariCam HD Cinema Camera. The variable-frame rate progressive-scan video camera emulates film's under- and over-cranking techniques, producing film-like images but with the convenience and cost of digital video. See http://www.panasonic-broadcast.com

Laird Introduces DV-to-Disk Recorder
Laird Telemedia has introduced the CapDiv DV-to-disk recorder. This battery-operated, turnkey DV capture system reduces the time and cost of recording edit-ready clips by directly recording audio and video to a hard disk drive from any DV camcorder during shooting for videography, ENG, EFP, and field acquisition applications. Its built-in 40GB disk drive provides up to three hours of DV storage and features include VTR-style transport controls, fast forward/reverse, slow motion, pause, and single-frame stepping. See http://www.lairdtelemedia.com

NLE news

Avid Announces Support for MPEG IMX
Avid Technology has announced that it will support MPEG IMX in the next version of the Avid Xpress, Avid Media Composer and Avid Symphony software, scheduled to ship at the end of the year. Customers will be able to transfer MPEG IMX media via SDTI-CP giving high quality ingest at faster than realtime. SDTI-CP has been standardised by SMPTE, and is an open technology that can be implemented by any manufacturer. It allows native MPEG IMX-compressed video and non-compressed audio data to be transferred within existing SDI-based studio infrastructures, without any loss of picture or sound quality, and without adding extra cost. The latest progress on these developments will be featured throughout Phase 2 of the Experience Avid|naked Tour currently taking place across Europe. For more information see http://www.avid.com/experience_naked

Quantel Offers QCut Laptop Editing for Journalists in the Field
Quantel has extended its scalable generationQ for News editing software to the standard laptop computer. QCut allows operators in the field to edit, voice-over and transmit finished broadcast-ready stories, using the same editing interface and tools as if they were studio-based. Users can install a Firewire interface in their laptop to give direct connection to a range of camcorders, speeding the acquisition-to-editing process, and the final link back to the studio is provided for via the Livewire Digital Voyager Lite store and forward laptop application. Voyager Lite can encode MPEG1 and MPEG2 video to rates ranging from 128kb/s to 15Mb/s, allowing the journalist to tailor output to match the bandwidth/transmission time requirements of available communications links, from ordinary phone lines to GSM, ISDN or Inmarsat Mobile ISDN. See http://www.quantel.com

Quantel Publishes New Edition of Digital Fact Book
Quantel has released a new edition of the Digital Fact Book. The 11th edition of this industry reference has been completely revised to bring it up-to-date with all the latest developments in digital technology, with particular emphasis on HD and the emergence of the multi-resolution world. Reflecting the growth of the digital film sector, a substantial new section has also been added, covering the basic terms and processes of this rapidly emerging business. The mission of the Digital Fact Book is to explain technology in terms which can be understood by the broadest possible audience, from engineers to editors and graphic designers. The 11th edition is available free in hard copy and on CD, to all those associated with the industry. It is also available via the Quantel website for those wishing to check references on-line or to download. See http://www.quantel.com/regdfb

Digital Voodoo Ships D1 64RT Uncompressed 10-bit SDI Card
Digital Voodoo has announced that the D1 64RT uncompressed 10-bit SDI 64-bit PCI card is now shipping. The D1 64RT is the second generation of the D1 Desktop 64 AV card, and supports enhanced capabilities, such as multi-stream realtime video, five different dissolves, colour correction and a programmable interface for future updates. It is designed specifically for editors who want to capture and output uncompressed 10-bit SD-SDI video with realtime effects and 6 channels of AES/EBU digital audio. Featuring NTSC (525) and PAL (625) television standards, the D1 64RT is compatible with most popular editing and compositing applications, including Apple Final Cut Pro, and Adobe Premiere, After Effects and Photoshop. The D1 64RT hardware is available immediately for US$3495, with RT software to be provided free-of-charge when completed. See http://www.digitalvoodoo.net

Digital Voodoo Announces Mac OS 10.2 Software Support
Digital Voodoo has announced Mac OS 10.2 software support for its PCI standard definition 10-bit uncompressed QuickTime capture and playback cards. The Digital Voodoo D1 and Iridium series of cards offer uncompressed editing using Apple Final Cut Pro, design using Adobe After Effects, and broadcast paint using Adobe Photoshop. The increased performance of Mac OS 10.2 has allowed the addition of new realtime effects, such as colour correction and cross dissolves, as well as other features in the future as requested by users. Mac OS 10.2 software drivers are available immediately to all registered Digital Voodoo customers. See http://www.digitalvoodoo.net

Adobe Announces Premiere 6.5 Plug-In for Sony DSR-DU1
Adobe Systems has announced the immediate availability of a free Adobe Premiere 6.5 on Windows plug-in that supports the Sony DSR-DU1 portable video disk unit. The new Adobe Premiere plug-in enables users to edit video on the Windows platform directly from a DV camera equipped with the DSR-DUI model. This minimises the time-consuming process of capturing and downloading raw video footage to a computer hard drive. See http://www.adobe.com/premiere

Newtek Offers Free Upgrade to Video Toaster [2]
NewTek has announced that the latest upgrade for Video Toaster [2] is available as a free download. The upgrade emphasises tools to provide input/output and frame buffer support for a number of production packages such as the Cayman Graphics PowerCG, the Pinnacle Systems Commotion, the eyeon Software Digital Fusion, the Discreet Combustion and the Discreet 3D Studio Max. It also introduces a number of other new features including a completely configurable and keyframable realtime blur filter, and significant audio quality improvements. The upgrade is available to registered Video Toaster [2] owners at no charge by download, or can be purchased on CD from authorised resellers. See http://www.newtek.com

DAW news

SADiE Unveils New Series 5 Product Range
SADiE has unveiled a completely redesigned line of editing workstations, known collectively as the Series 5. In addition to an increase in processing power, the line includes full support for realtime DirectX plug-ins and standard Windows networking, along with many other innovations. The line will comprise four new models that embrace both PCM and DSD technology. The DSD8 is a true 64fs processing multichannel system that is also a fully-fledged 8-channel PCM editor supporting all high-resolution formats. The 2-channel DSD2 will also be available, and will be upgradeable to the DSD8. The PCM4 replaces the existing RADiA workstation as an entry-level product with a greatly enhanced feature set and a significant increase in processing power. The PCM8 replaces the existing 2496 system and offers similar functionality to the PCM4, but with 8 channels of I/O. The interfacing of both models has been enhanced with the introduction of single-wire AES for high sample rates as standard. See http://www.sadie.com

Merging Announces New Developments in Pyramix V4.1 Software
Merging Technologies has announced Pyramix V4.1 software. Features include an all new realtime and permanently active crossfade editor, a completely new multi-point/multichannel source/master editing facility, an advanced PQ coding section, a new integrated Firewire video solution that eliminates the need for third party video capture/playback cards, virtual transport synchronisation that allows Pyramix to synchronise and control third party applications, multiple RS422 machine control ports, a new loop scrub, MP3 support, and support for VST and TC Works compatible plug-ins. Pyramix now supports project interchange from different DAWs, either with direct import/export of the native project, or via AES31, Open-TL or OMF. Pyramix 4.1 can also open and save Digidesign Pro Tools projects directly via a plug-in developed by Dark Matter Digital. See http://www.merging.com

Cube-Tec Launches DVD Proofing for AudioCube
Cube-Tec has launched a new addition to its DVD-A authoring package. With CubeDVD-A Proof, the operator can check the complete DVD-A menu and its structure with all links and commands, as well as the audio groups with browseable slideshows, prior to actually burning a DVD. During the DVD-A authoring process, the operator is able to make changes and view the results of those changes in realtime by simply saving the scenario and then displaying it on the AudioCube. Additionally, all GPRM and SPRM registers are displayed with their actual values, which can be changed within CubeDVD-A Proof to see how a player will react to the revised register values. This simplifies and expedites the process by enabling the author to test the register values before applying them in the scenario. The combination of CubeDVD-A Proof and extensive drag and drop implementation is expected to reduce the time required to complete a DVD-A title by as much as 50% to 60%. See http://www.cube-tec.com

Merging Launches a Video HD Record/Player
Merging Technologies has launched V-Cube, a standalone video record/player that can be synchronised and controlled by Pyramix through TCP/IP, RS422 or RS232, or by other DAW or timecode-based machines through the standard 9-pin P2 machine protocol. V-Cube has a range of resolution settings, can store up to 18 hours of video and comes with a DVD burner for video backup. Based on the Windows XP platform, V-Cube is an alternative option to the dedicated video integration already supported internally in Pyramix. Multiple V-Cubes can sit independently on a Pyramix network with any Pyramix system taking control and synchronising with any V-Cube through Merging's Virtual Transport software. See http://www.merging.com

Logic Platinum Now Supports Audio Units
Emagic has announced the release of Logic Platinum 5.4 for Mac OS X, the first host program to support Audio Units. Audio Units is a format for plug-ins that are organised in a more centralised manner and are simpler to manage. They offer improved handling of multiple audio streams (for example, from stereo to x.1 surround), compatibility with Mac OS X applications, robust graphics and editor support with individually sizeable windows, and the advantages of a shorter development time. Apple includes several Audio Units in Mac OS X, including a Velocity Engine-optimised reverb and a sample rate converter, and plans to release additional Audio Units in the future. Emagic is also offering an Audio Units Developer Kit that has been designed to allow manufacturers to easily port existing software instruments and plug-ins to support Audio Units. Logic Platinum 5.4 for Mac OS X has the added flexibility of the Rex file format, allowing Logic users to take full advantage of Rex libraries under Mac OS X. It is available as a free download for all registered owners of Logic Platinum 5 for Mac. See http://www.emagic.de

Fairlight Introduces Plug-Ins Manager 5 for DREAM
Fairlight has introduced the Plug-ins Manager 5 (PIM5) for access to a large range of third party plug-ins in addition to the existing native QDC engine-based plug-ins suite. PIM5 utilizes a scaleable DSP engine. At its core is a dedicated DSP processing card based on the Creamware Pulsar and Scope series of products. This runs independently of the main QDC recording, editing and mixing engine, ensuring that any instabilities introduced by third party processes do not interfere with the fundamental operation of the system. As standard, PIM5 ships with over 50 Creamware DSP-based plug-ins, encompassing a wide range of effects such as reverbs, delays, dynamics packages, phasers, flangers, ring modulators and multi-pole filters. A library of additional plug-ins is also available for purchase from the Creamware web site, although PIM5 is not limited to these since it is also a full VST2 host in its own right and supports a large range of VST plug-ins that run independently of the DSP card. See http://www.fairlightesp.com.au

Mackie Extends Soundscape Upgrade Program and Introduces New Version
Mackie Designs has extended its program for users of the Soundscape SSHDR-1 and E-MU Ensoniq Paris DAWs to upgrade to the new generation Soundscape 32. Now running until 30 April 2003 the program offers a rebate of US$2499 (or equivalent) to new Soundscape 32 customers that trade-in one SSHDR-1 or Paris system to an authorized Mackie dealer. The traded equipment must be fully functional and include specified items. Mackie has also introduced version 3.7 and Console Manager version 1.5 for the Soundscape 32 platform. V3.7 incorporates improved user interface capabilities including realtime crossfades, punch in/out and record track arming. Console Manager V1.5 implements support for Mackie Control/Mackie Control Extender and the recently announced Baby HUI control surfaces. See http://www.mackie.com/mbp

Digidesign Previews Pro Tools Version 6.0
Digidesign has previewed Pro Tools version 6 software for Mac OS X. Planned for release early 2003, Pro Tools 6.0 will feature an all-new user interface look, and enhanced databasing, mixing and MIDI features. Users of the Pro Tools 6.0 software for Mac OS X will also benefit from increased performance with dual-processor Power Mac G4 systems. Pro Tools 6.0 will be supported by Digidesign-approved Pro Tools TDM (Pro Tools|HD, Pro Tools|24 MIX, Pro Tools|24) or LE (Digi 001 and ToolBox) systems running Mac OS X, with support for Mbox and Digi 002 planned. Pro Tools 6.0 for Windows XP, as well cross-platform support for AVoption|XL, Unity, and MediaManager, is scheduled for release in Q2 2003. See http://www.digidesign.com

CreamWare Offers Pulsar Special Christmas Packs
Creamware is offering special Pulsar X-MAS Packs for up to 30% off the list price, until December 31st 2002. The limited-edition X-MAS Packs comprise complete Pulsar II or PowerPulsar systems, fitted with professional 'Plus' or 'Z-Link' I/O-options and including the Attacker plug-in by SPL. The SPL Attacker augments the Pulsar software package with a dynamic processor that allows the attack of percussive sounds to be emphasised for more 'punch.' The Plus I/O option version offers stereo balanced analogue, AES/EBU, and two ADAT interfaces for a total of 20 inputs and outputs. The Z-Link version is equipped with stereo analogue, S/PDIF, one ADAT interface and two Z-Link interfaces for 28 simultaneously usable I/Os. See http://www.creamware.com

Steinberg Debuts Nuendo 2.0
Steinberg has debuted the Nuendo 2.0 media production system. This new version has a multichannel architecture through the entire signal path. Every input, audio track, effect, group and output now offers up to 12 discrete channels, ready for full-scale 5.1, 7.1, or even 10.2 productions. The 32-bit floating point mixer has been completely re-engineered and now features multiple multichannel input and output buses. Mixing improvements include complete flexibility in signal routing to and from virtual effects for each track, and effect return channels that allow effects to be added to the input signal while recording, as well as full delay compensation throughout the signal path. New networking capabilities allow the transfer of tracks and events in a network over TCP/IP LAN, and the standard network access built into Nuendo 2.0 supports recording to and playback from dedicated servers or other workstations. Nuendo 2.0 can import Cubase SX projects, as well as file formats such as AES31, Open TL 3.0 and OMF, and support is provided for a range of third party export formats for project exchange. Nuendo 2.0 will be available worldwide in December 2002 for an RRP of US$1499. See http://www.steinberg.net

Marantz Japan Acquires North American Distribution of Marantz Professional Audio
Marantz Japan, a wholly owned subsidiary of D&M Holdings, has announced that it has acquired the North American distribution business of Marantz Professional audio and video products from Superscope Technologies, a distributor and developer of audio and video products worldwide. This move is part of Marantz Japan's plan to integrate all sales and marketing activities for the Marantz brand around the world into one company. Marantz Professional Europe will continue to distribute Superscope products in Europe, Africa and the Middle East for the foreseeable future. See http://www.marantz.com

Aaton Unveils Cantar Portable Recorder
Aaton has unveiled the Cantar 8-track digital audio recorder with built-in fifteen-input mixer. Designed to withstand severe environments, the unit can be dropped into two or three inches of mud and still operate correctly. The mic faders and filters are located at the top of the housing to make room for three large modulometers on the front panel, and the batteries are mounted laterally so as to serve as shock absorbers for the hard drive. Cantar relies on open industry standards such as Firewire for simultaneous recording on internal and external disks, FAT32 for disk formatting, and AES-31 WAV files for compatibility with numerous DAWs. See http://www.aaton.com/cantar

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