Shane Ross: The Avid Event - July 13, 2011

Little Frog in High Def by Shane Ross

I will summarize to the best of my ability, what I heard and experienced at the Avid Event held at the Warner Brothers studio, Stephen J. Ross Theatre, July 13, 2011. To the best of my ability because I didn’t take notes, didn’t tweet, and had three Heinekens.

The evening started off with a video showing all the movies and TV shows that used Avid in their post. But when I saw TRUE GRIT (the new one with Jeff Bridges), I was perplexed, because I knew they used FCP on that. But then I remembered that this wasn’t just a show about Media Composer, but ProTools as well. And I have no doubt it was mixed with ProTools. They had sound bytes from many industry people, including my friend Norm Hollyn. All positive comments…very typical marketting video.

Then on stage they had two editors who had used Avid, switched to FCP, then back to Avid. Alan Bell and Jonathan Alberts. They both started on Avid, and switched to FCP…and both for similar reasons. Cost. Avid systems used to cost upwards $65,000 to $100,000. And renting them was a huge chunk of change. Alan said that the budget for the system was more than the budget for him… so he explored other options, found that he could buy FCP and then put the full post budget for editing and the system into his pocket. This is very true. This is why a lot of people went to FCP…cost factor. Jonathan had a similar experience…and was able to convince Fox Studios that FCP would be right for a feature he was cutting. But then after a few years, they both went back to Avid MC. Project sharing being a big factor.

A new presenter came on stage and talked about Avid’s recent history…how often updates happened. Avid MC 3 in June 2008, then 3.5 a year later. Then 4.0 six months after that. Then last year in June, MC 5.0…and this year, March 2011, Avid MC 5.5. That updates were happening faster than ever, because they knew they needed to keep up with current tech. That they no longer needed to follow, but lead. They talked about people demanding to work with formats natively, and Avid responded with AMA…and it works with P2, Red, XDCAM, DSLR…and won an Emmy for their efforts. And that they know that the future of the NLE are the kids, so they have a great pricing plan for students…$295 for a fully functional Media Composer and 4 years of free updates. DUDE…great time to be a student! read more...

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