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Coolness Roundup 2005, Part II By Charlie White By popular demand, we bring you our annual Coolness Roundup, your guide to summer fun and relaxation, where all types of products and services are fair game, and where the name of the game is quality-of-life improvement. Here youll find devices and doodads that will enhance your summer vacation, and add a little fun to your leisure time activities. In part II of this years roundup, we venture even farther afield, tipping you off to the summers finest gadgets, tools, accessories and entertainments, all listed here with the sole purpose of making your life better. ...Read More »
DVD Insider: NAB Buzz Mergers, HD, H.264 By Miles Weston NAB (National Association of Broadcasting) is all about TV, movies and radio technology, applications and profits. But it was profits that hogged the spotlight right from the start this year. DVD Insider sees, hears, tastes, smells and feels all. ...Read More »
Santa's Wish List By Charlie White Wherever you are, Christmas is coming and the pressure is on. Whether youre in balmy Tinseltown where the sidewalk Santa Clauses are much, much too thin, or in the Frozen Tundra where only a self-produced deluge of body-temperature fluids can open frozen-shut locks, youre probably compelled to come up with some gift ideas for that techno-charmed colleague, friend or family member who just cant seem to get enough of those Things That Plug In. Looking for some Winter coolness? Well, were here to help, pointing out the greatest gifts for that gadget guru in your life. ...Read More »
Change NLEs? Maybe Not. By Charlie White The most-asked question we get here at the Midwest Test Facility concerns which nonlinear editing system would be best. Sure, many editors have their preferences, but these leanings toward one system or another often have little to do with which one is actually the best. Lots of times as a digital video editor you may want to, as we say down South, Dance with the one what brung ya. (Not that we natives of the Southeastern United States are stupid or use improper English, which is sometimes true, but not always.) ...Read More »
Can Apple Break Into Broadcast? By Guy Wright At this years NAB show in Las Vegas Apple kicked off a major push into high-end HD non-linear editing, FX, ENG, SAN, workflow, support for Panasonics new AJ-HD1200A production VTR, and partnerships with Thomson/Grass Valley. Their press event on Sunday, the day before the show opened was packed with hundreds of people. On the show floor, in the South Hall, Apples booth simply dominated. Elsewhere, many companies were displaying high-end software and peripherals running on Macs. The underlying message was 'Apple = broadcast.' ...Read More »
Controlling the Electronic Beast By Charlie White In the past few days, there have been multiple reminders of the power of the media. Amplifying that power is the new ease with which Web-based video can be internationally distributed. This power, once wielded by the few who owned the expensive printing presses, is now available to anybody with a camera, computer and Internet connection. That means that more and more video editors will be the ones who solely decide which messages get through and which end up on the cutting room floor. The problem is, many seek this enormous power, no matter how deranged they are. ...Read More »
Final Cut Pro for PC? By Charlie White In the past, your humble narrator was accused of having an anti-Mac bias. Now, some are saying just the opposite -- that perhaps a pro-Mac bias is afoot. There are good reasons why the tide seems to have turned here at the Midwest Test Facility, but we actually have no bias here for or against any operating system or content creation platform. The only bias here is toward getting the job done at a reasonable price. Let's take a look at the tide table of TV tools, and extrapolate what this could mean for the digital video editing world. ...Read More »
NAB Diary 2004: Preview Edition By Stephen Schleicher Now in its fourth year, the NAB Diary will be returning to these pages in just a few weeks giving you an up close look at the action going on at the show. While the show is still a few weeks away, now is the perfect opportunity to give you a sneak peak at the thoughts going through my head of what we might expect at the show. ...Read More »
Thanksgiving for Editors By Charlie White Its that time of year when those of us who live in the United States pause to give thanks for all that has been bestowed upon us in the past year. So, in keeping with this quaint custom, I decided to list the things digital video editors, and we here at Digital Media Net are thankful for. Its been a good year for technology in general and video editing in particular. So, let the thanking begin! ...Read More »
Live Dog or Dead Lion? By Charlie White Here on Digital Media Net, we like to keep you informed about all the latest technology. Reading through our pages, you might think I would recommend that you get rid of the digital video editing software and hardware you are now using and write a check for that newest, shiniest editing system, that speedy new computer or that spectacular new software package. Well, step back with me for a minute and get some perspective on this. Are you comfortable with what you're using now? Are you getting the job done? Are you earning money with it? ...Read More »
Editing in Software or Hardware: War of the Worlds By Charlie White It's getting to be the best time of year here on the wind-swept prairie of the Midwestern US; it's Autumn in the land of Orson Welles, Frank Lloyd Wright and Houdini. It's a region where an auteur can architect a bustling video business, in a setting that is pure magic. When Fall comes around, it makes me think of what's falling and what's rising in the macrocosm of this Midwestern microcosm -- this highly competitive War of the Worlds that is the magical architecture of digital video editing. Specifically, what's the best way to speed up the editing workflow -- using hardware or software? Or both? ...Read More »
Reviews Revisited: The Test Of Time By Charlie White We review a lot of products here at Digital Media Net's Midwest Test Facility. From time to time, I get mail from readers asking how such-and-such product has held up over the long run. So, here's a group of follow-up mini-reviews where you'll see how some of the devices and doo-dads we've reviewed over the past few years have withstood that most supreme of challenges: The test of time. ...Read More »
Post House in a Box By Stephen Schleicher Sitting on my doorstep last week was a rather unassuming box. Small in size, but heavy in weight, this box contained the Adobe Video Collection Professional. While this collection may seem like something that will end up sitting on the shelf, Adobe has actually created the most powerful postproduction software collection you can buy in one go. ...Read More »
Customers Take a Back Seat to Profits By Charlie White I've noticed an alarming trend lately. It seems the corporate bottom line is getting to be more important than customer satisfaction. Software prices, although lower than historical levels, are still way too high, while support services are no longer free. Making matters worse, some perfectly good hardware and software has been orphaned, while others are left wanting for driver updates that never seem to come. User agreements give you no rights, and a lot of software breaks down more than an old used car. Helloooo?Can we get some help here? ...Read More »
Back to School Pep Talk By Charlie White It's that time of year when many of you are heading back to school, saying goodbye to the laid-back rhythms of summer and returning to academic pursuits. If your chosen course of study involves the world of digital content creation, here are a few helpful hints. ...Read More »
Avid: Arrested Allegiance Alleviated By Charlie White A few months ago, some of us here at DMN went to a seminar in Los Angeles that was hosted by Quantel and attended by a disproportionate number of post-production industry players. It seemed like the audience was full of disgruntled Avid users, looking for a way to escape Avid's clutches -- to break away from what many characterized as a company that didn't have their best interests at heart. All were curiously kicking the tires of the new Quantel offerings, while joining in on often-acrimonious discussions that seemed to regularly steer their way back to Avid and its customer relations problems. Today, just a few months later, I'm hearing those gripers changing their tune. What happened? ...Read More »
What About the Mac Version? By John Virata In February 2002 I wrote in this column about Apple Computer's acquisition of Nothing Real, and mentioned to some extent that the acquisition, and others like it (Emagic, Silicon Grail), would piss off some of the software developers that develop for an already dwindling Mac platform. It appears that this is what may have occurred with the release of Adobe's latest video editing application. ...Read More »
Jobs Saves the Music Industry? By Charlie White In this editorial, I'll start by writing about content creation. But as the train of thought rolls along -- I'm warning you -- I'll end up making comments about our society, freedom, and the way we choose to live our lives. And who will be at the center of this whirlwind tour of our industry and its relationship to the Meaning of Life? The blood-sucking, anachronistic music industry and its savior du jour, Apple CEO Steve Jobs, that's who. ...Read More »
Its A Great Time To Be A Geek By Stephen Schleicher Neo, Wolverine, the little cartoon fish, Johnny Depp in dreadlocks, the big green guy, Arnold from the future, Sean Connery in that comic book movie, that OTHER comic book movie, Sinbad (not that Sinbad, but the other one), the angels, Lara, and of course Bill. The geekiness in the air is so thick you can cut it with your Wal-mart special limited edition light saber. Why all the excitement? Everyone in Hollywood is banking on this season to be THE season for making a comeback. And it begins TODAY! ...Read More »
Editor's Metaphor By Charlie White Have you ever noticed that learning certain seemingly useless skills can help you with other tasks you do? Well, since summer is coming up, maybe you have some lazy, hazy, crazy vacation time coming up with nothing in particular to do. Here's an idea: Allow me to suggest learning a skill that could make you a more effective editor, and at the same time, is lots of fun. This skill serves as a metaphor for lots of things digital video editors are required to do every day. What is it? Juggling. ...Read More »
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