Grass Valley EDIUS 6

digitalfilms by Oliver Peters

Editing software manufacturers continue to expand features by adding native support for a variety of new camera codecs. EDIUS 6, the newest version of Grass Valley’s primary editing platform advances this endeavor.

EDIUS 6 is exclusively a Windows-based NLE, running under a wide range of configurations. I was able to test it on a new HP EliteBook 8740w with the Windows 7 64-bit Professional OS installed. This is a robust, top-of-the-line mobile workstation with more horsepower than most desktop units. I was operating in a software-only configuration, but EDIUS 6 can also be integrated with Grass Valley’s line of STORM and SPARK i/o cards when you use a tower instead of a mobile system.

The EDIUS 6 mantra – “Edit Anything”

Grass Valley promotes EDIUS 6 around the ability to throw nearly any codec or format at it and being immediately ready to edit – in real-time without the need to render. This is of particular interest to P2 and XDCAM shooters. My system natively supported a wide range of the professional acquisition codecs, including the newly added Canon XF MPEG2 4:2:2 codec. Possibly even more important – you can also drag-and-drop Canon H.264 files from a Canon EOS 5D or 7D and start editing right away. The “sweet spot” in my tests was Panasonic’s AVC-Intra codec. This is supposed to be very computationally intensive, but both 50 and 100 Mb/s files were a breeze to work with inside EDIUS 6 and on this workstation. With many prosumer and even professional cameras adopting some form of AVCHD, EDIUS 6 users will be happy to know that it can also handle real-time, multi-stream editing of AVCHD content.

It’s important to stress the “native” part. A lot of manufacturers claim native support, but in actual practice, transcode the media to another format upon ingest; or at the very least, rewrap the file container to a different type of file. EDIUS 6 does neither. If you ingest media from an OHCI device (FireWire), such as an HDV camcorder, the media stays native. Do you shoot P2 or XDCAM-HD? Simply edit straight from the media files or copy them to your local storage and access the media directly from the native folder and file structure of that format. Other than the time it takes to copy the files, the media is immediately accessible to EDIUS 6 and ready to edit. This difference becomes critical in time-sensitive workflows, like broadcast news. read more...

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