Avid Media Composer 5 Upgrade
with Avid Production Suite
Upgrade from a previous version of Media Composer or Avid Xpress Pro/DV now, Register with Avid, and get a FREE upgrade to Avid Media Composer 5.5 from Avid when released.
|Avid Media Composer 5 Full version
with Avid Production Suite
Purchase Avid Media Composer or Avid Xpress Pro/DV now, Register with Avid, and get a FREE upgrade to Avid Media Composer 5.5 from Avid when released.
Do I qualify for a FREE Upgrade?
You're eligible to receive a free upgrade to Media Composer 5.5 if you meet one of the following requirements:
• You purchased and registered a full or upgrade version of Media Composer 5 on or after February 8, 2011. You must register by March 15, 2011 for your FREE upgrade
Avid Media Composer 5 Owners:
Once Media Composer 5.5 is released a downloadable upgrade for Media Composer 5 users who purchased before Feb. 8th will be available direct from Avid for $149 or you may purchase a boxed upgrade that also includes the Avid Production Suite with 3rd party software from us at $395.
|Avid Xpress or Media Composer 4 Owners:
The boxed upgrade to MC5.5 with the Avid Production Suite from MC4.x or older, Xpress Pro or Xpress DV will be $895. You save more than $200 by purchasing the Media Composer version 5 upgrade now (before March 8th), registering ASAP, and downloading the FREE upgrade to 5.5 from Avid, when released.
Last week Avid announced that they would be releasing and shipping the newest version of Media Composer on March 8th - a full month before NAB! This is very exciting news and it created a flury of tweets, blog posts and discussions in user groups and forums. At last years NAB, Avid announced Media Composer 5, and it was he hit of the show. It won numerous honors throughout the industry at NAB and throughout the year and was even named the Videoguys Top Product of 2010. It looks like the new version 5.5 is going to continue the momentum and we expect the awards to keep on coming in 2011.
What's new in Media Composer 5.5
- Capture, monitor, and output with AJA Io Express
- Edit HDCAM SR Lite footage natively
- Accelerate AVC-Intra workflows with Nitris DX AVC-Intra
- Speed up editing and mixing with the Artist Series
- Find the right clips fast with PhraseFind
- Directly tweak transitions with the Smart Tool
- Gain better search capabilities
- Capture and monitor audio using Pro Tools hardware
- Work with audio more easily and creatively
- Fuel your creativity with the Production Suite
Now here's the Videoguys' opinion on why Media Composer 5.5 is so great:
1) Avid Media Composer 5.5 is more open!
When Avid announced that Media Composer 5 would support the mighty Matrox MXO2 Mini, it sent shockwaves through the industry at last year's NAB. This was one giant step forward for Avid editors and now, with Media Composer 5.5, Avid takes another step in the right direction with support for the AJA I/O Express. The AJA I/O Express gives you both SDI in and out, as well as HDMI output for monitoring.
While Avid didn't allow Matrox to turn on capture for the MXO2 Mini, they have added some new format support for MXO2 Mini with Media Composer 5.5. Matrox MX02 Mini now includes SD 23.976, 720p 23.98, 1080p 23.98, 1080p 24, 1080p 25, and 1080p 29.97 as well as the ability to select PsF or true P output in 1080p modes. Also MX02 Mini with Max acceleration has been qualified on Mac OS systems.
So now Avid gives you two great 3rd party hardware solutions to choose from, along with their existing NitrisDX and MOJODX hardware.
In Avid's own words the AJA Io Express is an excellent choice for those who don't need the power and acceleration of a Nitris DX or Mojo DX system, Io Express gives you high-quality audio and HD/SD video capture, monitoring, and output. When you pair the Io Express with Media Composer 5.5, you get a complete capture, editing, monitoring, and output system for your laptop or desktop computer in a more cost-effective solution.
The Matrox MXO2 Mini is the perfect choice for file-based workflows that don't require I/O. Matrox MXO2 Mini is the ideal cost-effective monitoring solution for Mac and Windows. Pair it with Media Composer 5.5 and it becomes a dedicated, high-quality monitor-only solution for file-based or workgroup production, so you can view your video work in real time without any major expense.
Like I said, it's another step in the right direction. What would have made this one a HUGE leap would have been support for the installed base of KONA cards and the inclusion of the full MXO2 family of devices. Well folks, this isn't hppening yet, but it's pretty clear this is the direction Avid is going down and it's just a matter of time before we get what we really want, full support for 3rd party hardware from Matrox, AJA and others.
Finally, Avid Media Composer Mojo DX really unleashes the power of Media Composer software by combining it with a high-performance digital video interface.
Using Avid Intelligent Architecture, which squeezes the most performance out of your system, Media Composer software tightly integrates Mojo DX video hardware with your host computer's CPU and GPU, giving you a high-bandwidth effects engine that delivers without compromise—no matter what formats and codecs you use. Whether you're working with tape or going tapeless, experience faster editing—plus digital capture, monitoring, and output—with Media Composer Mojo DX.
2) More AMA support for more tapeless workflows
Avid made another big announcement last year when they revealed that Avid AMA would include support for Quicktime and DSLR files. Now you could just take files from your DSLR or that you already captured into ProRes and bring them directly into Avid and onto the Media Composer timeline. No rendering or transcoding. They just worked!! This was a HUGE advancement for Media Composer and it put them ahead of the entire industry. Now with Media Composer 5.5, Avid has expanded their support to include Sony HDCAM SR Lite. Quite honestly, I did not even know what HDCAM SR Lite was before the MC 5.5 announcement, but once again, it shows how Avid is expanding AMA to include more and more worksflows.
Hopefully we'll be getting AMA support for AVCHD footage sometime in the near future. There are millions of AVCHD camcorders and mini HD Video recorders that capture into AVCHD being used everyday, all over the world. While the camcorders that record this footage may not be considered professional, Avid editors are asked to handle this footage all the time. Because they are so small and simple to use, many professional news organizations and creative filmmmakers are integrating them into their workflows, just as they have with DSLRs.
3) The Smart Tool gets Smarter
Another new feature added to Media Composer with the 5.0 release was the Smart Tool. I am a big fan of the Smart Tool, I really like how it simplifies the editing workflow for me and people like me who are more used to editing with Final Cut Pro or Adobe Premiere Pro. While seasoned Avid editors have mixed feelings about the Smart Tool, I love it and I'm really happy to see Avid expanding it's usefulness in MC 5.5
The new 5.5 Smart Tool allows you to manipulate transitions directly from the timeline. This will save me lots of time and extra steps. I really like how it gives you handles to easily modify the start and stop points of the transition. They also add a new transition manipulation viewer that looks pretty cool and I can't wait to start playing around with it! It's going to make fine tuning my transitions so much easier! Now editors also get more control over the Smart Tool, which should make experienced Avid editors much happier.
4) Artist Control Surface Support
Last year Avid purchased a company, Euphonix, that makes control surfaces. A few months before Avid purchased them, we started carrying their new Artist Series of products. I'm a really big fan of the Artist Series - which is now supported in Avid Media Composer 5.5, on both PC and Mac platforms! It should be noted that while I'll just be talking about MC5.5 here, the Avid Artist Series products support a bunch of software including ProTools.
Avid Artist Transport is a sophisticated jog-shuttle device with customized shortcut keys for Media Composer. I really like using a jog shuttle to move through my footage and with Artist Transport you're getting not just a heavy duty jog shuttle, but a navigation tool.
Here's what Avid has to say about it:
Get where you need to go—fast—with complete one-handed control over your projects. Gain one-touch access to software functions and change the functionality of the jog wheel and shuttle ring with the Soft Keys. Use the jog wheel and shuttle ring to move through projects, trim/move clips, adjust volumes or pans, and more. And with programmable transport keys and a numeric keypad to enter time code or move clips, you can significantly speed up your editing.
Avid Artist Control is my favorite! We're talking jog shuttle, mixing board and a customized color LCD panel that allows you to take control of the entire MC5.5 interface!
Here's what Avid has to say about it:
Speed up and enhance your entire editing experience with hands-on control from Artist Control. With its touchscreen interface and preprogrammed Soft Keys, which you can also customize to perform one-touch complex functions, you can edit video faster—with more precision and fewer keyboard keystrokes. Mix audio tracks with the touch-sensitive faders and encoders. And navigate through projects with ease using the jog/shuttle/zoom wheel and dedicated transport controls.
Avid Artist Mix is a compact 8-fader control surface that gives you fast access to a variety of Media Composer 5.5 functions right from the control surface. I've always said that a professional audio track can make every video better and now it's easier to mix that track than ever before!
Here's what Avid has to say about it:
If you're working with multiple audio tracks in your projects, editing and mixing with just a keyboard and mouse can be frustrating. With Artist Mix, you can greatly speed up your recording, editing, and mixing tasks, with full hands-on control and precision. Adjust volumes across multiple tracks with the touch-sensitive faders. Pan sounds with the touch-sensitive rotary encoders. And solo, mute, and record tracks right from the surface.
I have to admit, I have not seen or used PhraseFind, but I can see how it can save editors a tremendous amount of time. First a disclaimer: PhraseFind is not included with Avid Media Composer 5.5., it is a $495. PhraseFind allows you to locate clips and find your footage based on voice recognition. You can buy different languages packs that even take into account the region (ie. British English, North American English). For a limited time Avid is offering Media Composer 5 Owners a FREE Upgrade to Media Composer 5.5 with their PhraseFind purchase.
I'm very excited about Media Composer 5.5 and Avid's steady march towards making Media Composer an open platform for all editors. As a $149 download upgrade directly from Avid I think it's a fair price for a bunch of new features and improved performance. If you're still using an older version of Media Composer (or Avid Xpress Pro or Xpress DV) you definitely want to take advantage of this upgrade, and even more important you want to jump on it now while you still can for $695. After March 8th the cost of the upgrade for MC4 or older Avid editors goes to $895. You can save even more by taking advantage of our MC5 upgrade bundles with your choice of G-Tech G-Raid, Blu-ray Burner or Training bundles for $749.95!
As I mentioned at the beginning of the article, Avid Media Composer 5.5 has created quite a lot of excitement throughout the industry. Avid has posted a bunch of really useful videos on their website:
We've been blogging them all, and you can follow it here using our MC5.5 TAG