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AVID Shuts out some old Hardware Synchronisers/Clock Generators
Old 1st December 2009
  #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
I guess the AVID vs FCP debate will go on for eons.

The bottom line is work with what you are comfortable with and does a good job for you day in and day out and the most important MAKES YOU MONEY!
I agree with you here, thomas. In the end, the artist is more important than the tools. But, we love to argue and take sides. Coke vs pepsi, chevy vs ford, boxers vs briefs.
I guess when we spend a lot of money buying all these goodies, we tend to get a bit proud and possessive.
I do think that, unfortunatly, gearslutz tends to be very anti-avid/digidesign, almost to the point of some sort of religion. If it's analog and logic, it's good. if it's digital and avid, it's bad. It all seems a bit obtuse to me.
Old 2nd December 2009
  #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
. The bottom line is work with what you are comfortable with and does a good job for you day in and day out and the most important MAKES YOU MONEY!
G'day,

So True ! and money these days for our work (for many) is a struggle in Post (especially audio). Nonetheless - FYI ... what we here at Fairlight are seeing worldwide ... especially in TV Post is FCP, FCP and more FCP. More content is being crammed down the pipes for all to address for less & less price and also less time requiring particular any "sophisticated" feature functionality mindset. If it basically does the job ... GO !

Four or five years ago an editing system, uncompressed editing system from Avid would maybe would cost a shop about $30,000 to $35,000. Now, and over the last few years... many went for FCP HD on OS9 for $15,000, and have never looked back.

This is obviously why companies like ours are heavily supporting FCP XML HD audio/video drag & drop functionality for workflow. In Asia ... the recent public broadcast "Tenders" used to "read" --- (NLE video editor) --- now they are reading "FCP".

Also ... What I enjoy ... is that Shops are now getting "mixed" these days ... finding themselves with both AVID, due to previous investment ... and FCP (or others) in order to cheaply handle their new content requirements ... All this making workflow easy ??? ... Great fun for a company like ours as we strongly support both platforms.

Who knows the outcome ? ... the beat goes on.

Thanks

Uncle Joe


.
Old 6th December 2009
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
Back as far as 2008 Avid was having problems. They were losing market share and more and more studios were turning over to FCP. There have been numerous postings on forums that Avid is still in trouble. I have taken down my statement since I cannot back it up with an industry announcements. Sorry for the confusion.

Digidesign did not show up at the 2009 AES convention with no word as to why. There has been a lot of speculation that they are having financial problems or they are getting ready to announce new products that were not ready for the October 2009 AES convention. There is much information that they are going to change the name of the company and there is speculation that Digidesign maybe spun off as a separate company or division. This information is from many different websites but there is no official announcement. I am adopting a wait and see posture.

Again sorry for the confusion.



Sources that shall remain nameless say the following regarding the absence of AVID/DIGI from NAB and AES:

1] No big product announcements, no point in spending big money

2] AVID lost their spot in the main NAB hall due to a contract expiration. The convention center basically held it for ransom with an offer from Apple. AVID refused, given that they had nothing new to show, and instead had a considerably smaller, private invite only demo at another location. I know you were talking about DIGI, but I have no direct information on that.


I strongly doubt AVID is intending to spin Digidesign off as a separate company. More than likely what will happen is that AVID will continue to remove the Digidesign brand from products until the entire Protools division simply becomes "Protools by AVID" instead of "Protools by Digidesign, an AVID Company"

It hasnt hit the mainstream yet, but AVID is moving their corporate headquarters, and my suspicion is that this is a move towards consolidating their many brands under one roof.
Old 7th December 2009
  #35
Gear Maniac
 

Q

Well...
I can't officially speak on behalf of Avid in this thread, so this is personal reflection but with an insiders perspective...

I've been involved in Avid Digi Aus/NZ for 7 years advising on workflow with an emphasis on audio post, and yes, there are FCP broadcasters out there but they are less than 15% of my market. The vast majority still use Media composer and unity for quick turnaround post work with pro tools hanging off it. There is also two facilities I know of in our little market who were devoted to FCP for post but when they got busy they switched back to avid and unity.
More stories along these lines at avid.com. All fact, with some hype thrown in, that's marketing for you, but still, clients DO switch from FCP to avid, a story which doesnt get believed more often than not.

Either way, our satellite technologys and support of decklink cards (same cards Fairlight use, right Joe?) means Pro Tools is very FCP friendly, a decision backed by Avid. Gary Greenfield, our CEO is big on the mantra "Avid optimised in an open eco-system" - we want to collaborate, thats the New Avid, as of his tenure starting about 2 years ago.

Avid qualified their unity storage for use with FCP last year to make this point clear - we have devoted engineering resources to testing every unity release with an FCP suite to keep that as a supported config co-existing alongside Media composers.

At the end of the day, I say competition is always healthy for the end users. It it wasn't for editing system competition, Avid may not be the revitalised company it is beginning to be these days. We certainly have a much more customer focused direction from on high, a bit different to others times in the comnpany's history. Hence making sure we continue to support mix era peripherals, thats driven by customer feedback, albeit negative, but we listened and acted according with the clients wishes, like a good company should.

Enough of a rant - as stated earlier, these forums get pretty anti-avid/digi at times and mostly I hold my tongue but just wanted to put in 2c here, hopefully you guys dont mind a bit of self-indulgence!

Incidentally its no secret we are consolidating our brands, (see avid.com for the "5 industry leaders becoming one" video) the work started 2 years ago to merge 5 companys into one and it continues today with moves like the new US HQ consolidating our engineering resources and things like that - yes Media composer and DS engineers and Pro tools engineers in one building, hallelujah! Good news from my perspective.
Old 7th December 2009
  #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Olhsson View Post
Suggesting FCP has displaced Avid in market share is just like saying the Teac 3340 displaced Ampex, 3M and Studer in the early '70s. It's a comparison of apples vs. oranges. What happened is that there was a big decline in high-end productions that forced big facilities to close and left many editors seeking low budget work they could do at home using final cut. Understandably large facilities have not been investing in new editing systems since their existing HD Avids could already do everything required.

Digidesign did explain that they decided to not spend several hundred thousand dollars on an AES presence because they had nothing new to introduce. The also indicated they intend to do a lot more local workshops than they have in the past. I believe Shure actually had the biggest booth at AES so Digidesign was by no means the only manufacturer to scale their AES presence way back.
I think you're right that there's a "make it work, use it up and finally throw it out" mentality going around. Facilities are not easily browbeaten by sales droids telling them that they have to keep up with some magical standard of system architecture. If they can do the job on older equipment and offer more value for the client's dollar, so much the better.

Also, trade shows are not nearly as important to sales as having a great email list, keeping customers updated and interested with specials, and having decent customer support. I stopped going to AES several years ago because the old cachet
was gone and I knew basically everything that they were going to show before I went there. Not worth the trip. If I want a trip with my friends, I'll call 'em up and suggest a block of days and a location where we can all party. I don't need to trudge around big convention halls carrying bags of stuff to keep tabs on industry friends.
Old 7th December 2009
  #37
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Probably costs less to run fiber and do a build out than retrofit the long-in-the-tooth Tewksbury offices. Less downtime, too. Given this economy, I'll bet they got a killer deal.
Old 7th December 2009
  #38
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They've also been advertising for heavyweight engineers in their Daly City operation. I seriously doubt they're about to move Digidesign and lose proximity to the DSP talent available from Stanford as consultants.
Old 7th December 2009
  #39
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Brent, as a 17 year Avid veteran I would like to know if this new collaboration, open eco system type of thinking will result in Avid finally opening up to 3rd party video i/o?

I have a Mojo DX rig that cost me $12k (not including mac pro) from a Sydney retailer. I already had an Aja Kona 3 card that only cost $4k at the time. If you make Avid MC software talk to a Kona or Black Magic or even Motu box you will slay the FCP market. I know you do it with the Xena card so the architecture must already exist, it just needs modifying?

Come on! Do it!
Old 8th December 2009
  #40
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Uncle Joe's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent_in_Sydney View Post
Well...
I can't officially speak on behalf of Avid in this thread, so this is personal reflection but with an insiders perspective...
Thanks mate !

Open architectures between systems in this day and age appears to be a vital cause. As I am sure you agree.

Some quick questions for you here if at all possible ... for me and maybe some users (Slutz) out there.

FCP integration .. Cool ... Quick question for you ... ... Is both Avid and PT - do you currently support some form of direct import for XML data from FCP with all it's associated media (which can of course be several 100 .mov files ... etc ? Also ... does this currently support the video "layering" and possible variable frame rate speed changes ?

MXFAvidDNXHD native video/audio with full AAF import and export ... Can I easily run and administer all of this this on a current and single PT rig (one computer) or is the additional video satellite computer required here ?

Would love to know ? Excuse my curiosity.

FYI ... The Decklink card in our system is only required for capture and additional monitor feeds. It is not at all required for all the native audio/video ITB "file" handling.

Thanks & All the best,

Uncle Joe


.
Old 8th December 2009
  #41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent_in_Sydney View Post
Well...
I can't officially speak on behalf of Avid in this thread, so this is personal reflection but with an insiders perspective...

I've been involved in Avid Digi Aus/NZ for 7 years advising on workflow with an emphasis on audio post, and yes, there are FCP broadcasters out there but they are less than 15% of my market. The vast majority still use Media composer and unity for quick turnaround post work with pro tools hanging off it. There is also two facilities I know of in our little market who were devoted to FCP for post but when they got busy they switched back to avid and unity.
More stories along these lines at avid.com. All fact, with some hype thrown in, that's marketing for you, but still, clients DO switch from FCP to avid, a story which doesnt get believed more often than not.

Either way, our satellite technologys and support of decklink cards (same cards Fairlight use, right Joe?) means Pro Tools is very FCP friendly, a decision backed by Avid. Gary Greenfield, our CEO is big on the mantra "Avid optimised in an open eco-system" - we want to collaborate, thats the New Avid, as of his tenure starting about 2 years ago.

Avid qualified their unity storage for use with FCP last year to make this point clear - we have devoted engineering resources to testing every unity release with an FCP suite to keep that as a supported config co-existing alongside Media composers.

At the end of the day, I say competition is always healthy for the end users. It it wasn't for editing system competition, Avid may not be the revitalised company it is beginning to be these days. We certainly have a much more customer focused direction from on high, a bit different to others times in the comnpany's history. Hence making sure we continue to support mix era peripherals, thats driven by customer feedback, albeit negative, but we listened and acted according with the clients wishes, like a good company should.

Enough of a rant - as stated earlier, these forums get pretty anti-avid/digi at times and mostly I hold my tongue but just wanted to put in 2c here, hopefully you guys dont mind a bit of self-indulgence!

Incidentally its no secret we are consolidating our brands, (see avid.com for the "5 industry leaders becoming one" video) the work started 2 years ago to merge 5 companys into one and it continues today with moves like the new US HQ consolidating our engineering resources and things like that - yes Media composer and DS engineers and Pro tools engineers in one building, hallelujah! Good news from my perspective.
This is all great to hear.

As I said before it I think it is more about the person doing the editing than the system they are working on.

Avids are GREAT tools but costly to own and maintain. A lot of people now are looking for alternatives. FCP is such an alternative. So is Sony Vegas. We do a lot of commercial work and as I stated earlier we originally started off with Sony Vegas and now we are on FCP. For the clients we serve and our budget FCP does everything we could hope for and more. For us it is simple economics.

You mentioned the problem with members of this forum being anti Digi and Avid maybe they still have, as I do, a bad taste in their mouth from the way Digi use to treat clients. Maybe Digi should reach out and talk to some of their former clients and make them aware, as you have done. as to the changes in the AVID/Digi family.

I just want to relay something that I observed recently...

I was at a recent seminar at our local GC store. The person giving the seminar was from Digidesign. He started off the seminar by saying that Digi owns the DAW market especially in music, film and video production. He went on to tell of all the successes that Digi has had in the past and painted a very rosy picture of Digi in the future. At the end of the presentation a couple of people asked questions about problems they were having with their system. The presenter was very condescending and told the people that they should read the manual and if they continued to have problems they should contact tech support. To me he was making the people feel as if they were dumb and that the Digi hardware and software was so well designed that it was probably operator error and not a problem with the software or the hardware. One person said they had had problems contacting tech support and wondered if their was a better way than getting stuck on hold for hours. The presenter said that they should call the number at other than peak times and that he personally had never had to wait for a tech support person, but again he works for Digi and probably has a direct number. The whole seminar was basically look how GREAT we are and that if you have problems reading the manual will solve all your problems and a couple of hours wait on the phone is a small price to pay for support on your product. This was within the past three months so maybe the new Digi approach to helping people has not filtered down to the people on the front lines. I know I am talking about the Digi part of Avid so maybe it is different.

Anyway what ever DAW or DVW you use it should be something that you are comfortable using and gets the job done and you paid.

Old 8th December 2009
  #42
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I guess it depends on how one defines the word "maintain."

If you are mostly interested in bragging rights about having the latest and greatest, that's going to be expensive no matter what platform you're talking about.

If you're talking about getting the job done, most DAWs from the past five to ten years are more than adequate with no upgrades at all. Ten years ago, each iteration of technology made a huge difference but we're well past that point.
Old 8th December 2009
  #43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Olhsson View Post
I guess it depends on how one defines the word "maintain."

If you are mostly interested in bragging rights about having the latest and greatest, that's going to be expensive no matter what platform you're talking about.

If you're talking about getting the job done, most DAWs from the past five to ten years are more than adequate with no upgrades at all. Ten years ago, each iteration of technology made a huge difference but we're well past that point.
It was costing my mentor $6K per year for his maintenance contract on his AVID system. I would say that is expensive since you pay $0K per year for FCP maintenance. Maybe that is not what you meant.
Old 8th December 2009
  #44
Gear Maniac
 

Joe...really??
I think most people here are aware enough of technology and tools (being gear sluts) to realise you are asking the Digi rep questions about technology where Fairlight have an edge at this point in time! "curious" lol cmon! It's a thread about the changes at Avid, not about Fairlight technology!
Different tools, different jobs - both PT and Xynergi IMHO have a home in different types of facilities, but this isn't the thread to have it out, is it?

To avoid be called a "cop out" to the gaunlet wrapped in a velvet glove from Joe...
XML interchange, not currently, but considered a priority. Automatic duck does the job for most clients who require XML, but, yknow, theyve been doing OMF export for years and that works fine MOST of the time

DNXHD playback, we use video satellite, two machines rather than your single machine solution, but we use MXF rather than a QT wrapper for tight sync, not sure what you guys are doing there to keep sync within 1/64th frame (as we do)

To some other questions

AJA Kona cards, Avid already collaborate with them on the DS range, however not the Media composer range. Perhaps down the track, hard to know since Im in the audio division not video. I know its not uncommon feedback. Talk to your local reps and let them know your reasons and business needs.

The way Digi treat clients? I'm sorry to hear you had trouble in the past, I cant change whats happened and I have largely little to no control outside my own sandpit in oceania, but I'll pass on the feedback for sure.
Personally Ive considered myself "front line" (over here in the far eastern end of the spiral galaxy...) since I started with them 7 years ago so it's definately filtering down!
If you have a problem with an Avid staff presentation just let the reseller know so they can talk to us about it. (Like anything, we cant fix it if we aren't aware it's broke.)

Cost of video products? It dropped immensely last year at NAB. A full blown Media composer software version for students is only US$295...
We also have 3 different levels of support depending on your needs. Thats changed in recently times. Maybe check in with your local vid rep to see if you're on the right type of service agreement to meet your needs. Basic cover for telephone calls during business hours is very affordable to the best of my knowledge.

Please dont compare our tech support with that of the fruit company (!)...hopefully you realise we aren't a consumer company, our tech staff seriously know their stuff and are industry veterans for the most part, not uni students or a call centre script overseas somewhere.

Anyways, enough of a blab. I join these forums to keep an ear to the ground to help people and to give answers to questions when I can, and to learn a bunch from folks like you all. Im not here to throw out company lines again and again, check my post history and hopefully that will bear me out. Hopefully Ive answered your questions and if anyone ever needs anything just drop me a line or PM through the boards.

We're here to help, believe it or not, hence my blog etc. Thats all done on my own time, not company dime.
Old 12th December 2009
  #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent_in_Sydney View Post
Joe...really??
I think most people here are aware enough of technology and tools (being gear sluts) to realise you are asking the Digi rep questions about technology where Fairlight have an edge at this point in time! "curious" lol cmon! It's a thread about the changes at Avid, not about Fairlight technology!
Hi Brent,

Sorry if I was "out of line" here. I was simply curious, and as you are certainly aware, I am always being asked about supported file formats, codecs, and hardware requirements. I was under the impression that Digi was now running HD on 1 computer via the Decklink card - my mistake. and FI ... for DNXHD playback, we also use MXF.

Thanks and Best Regards,

Uncle Joe


.
Old 14th December 2009
  #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Joe View Post
I was under the impression that Digi was now running HD on 1 computer via the Decklink card
This is also possible.
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