The Time is Now for Upgrading your Avid!

Videoguys by Gary Bettan

Videoguys has put together this little FAQ to better explain the upgrade options for Avid editors

The Time is Now for Upgrading your Avid!

At IBC this week Avid announced a new version of Media Composer shipping in Q4 that will include support for native formats including 4K editing and DNxHR CODEC. This is the big news that Avid editors all over the world have been waiting for. While only a few editors are actually needing to edit or deliver 4K content at this time, everyone is looking at their next camera being 4k, if they don't own a 4K camera already. So while you may be HD today, everyone's future is 4K, and Avid is giving you all the tools you need!

Native 4K & DXnHR

While native support for 4K is going to grab all the headlines, I'm even more excited about the DNxHR media CODEC because it will allow us to more easily migrate to 4K. As I said earlier, 4K cameras are everywhere, but that doesn't mean we all have the computer hardware or storage to handle it natively. With DNxHR we'll be able to edit 4K in Media Composer with our existing HD hardware and IT infrastructure while maintaining phenomenal 4K image quality. This is huge! Because it means we can migrate to 4K without having to scrap all our investments in HD post production workflows. DNxHR isn't just a CODEC to use with Media Composer, it's part of Avid Everywhere. This means that your 4K workflows can and will extend beyond your desktop. You may not be there today, but in the future, you will.

Back in April at NAB Avid announced that Media Composer would be available in different flavors. Perpetual, Subscription and Floating. We published a guide along with a couple fo videos to help explain the different flavors of Media Composer, but there is still some confusion, especially among existing Avid editors. Specifically when it comes to upgrades. Why? Because Avid no longer sells upgrades, they sell an annual support contract that includes all new versions and updates for free, as well as Avid telephone support.

It's a Perpetual Subscription

OK, let's call it what it really is. For folks that own Avid already, what it means is that you are going to be paying $299 ($285 from Videoguys) per year to keep your Avid current. If you buy a new seat via perpetual license for $1,299 ($1,250 from Videoguys), you will then be paying $299 ($285 per year from Videoguys) for each year after the first. You purchase of a perpetual license includes the first year of Avid support, so you'll be entitled to all updates and new versions for free during the first year.

If you are tight on cash today, you can subscribe to Media Composer for $599 per year ($599 from Videoguys). The MC subscription also includes the Symphony Option as well as well a more robust 3rd party software bundle, so it's definitely worth considering for new Avid editors. Avid also offers some really fantastic deals for students, educators and schools. We'll cover that in a future blog post.

Let's get back to the Annual Support Contract or Perpetual Subscription as I like to call it. Let's clarify some points with a brief FAQ.

Avid Media Composer Renewal FAQ

Q: What if I don't purchase an annual support contract by December 31, 2014

A: If you own Media Composer today, without a support contract, then your license will become "Frozen" on your current version forever as of January 1st, 2015.

Avid has grandfather's everyone who owns Media Composer to be able to purchase a new support contract before then and be upgraded to the very latest version, with a year's worth of upgrades, updates and support. For just $299 ($285 at Videoguys) this is a tremendous value. Even if you do not plan on upgrading immediately.

Q: What happens to me iIf my support contract expires? Can I keep using my software and edit my projects?

A: YES! If you do not renew your annual support contract you still keep your software. It becomes locked in at the last version you downloaded and installed. You can keep using it forever, but you will not be able to upgrade. If down the road you decide you want to upgrade to let's say version 9.5, you would have to purchase a new perpetual license or subscription. You would not be able to turn your old "frozen" version of MC into the latest version.

Q: What happens if I cancel my Annual Support contract

A: Well, you can't actually cancel it, since you bought a full year subscription, but you can decide not to renew your subscription. The support contract gets set up by default to automatically renew, so if you decide to end it, you have to go into your user account and turn auto renew off. If at the end of your year you choose not to renew, your subscription will lapse.

Q: Do I have to upgrade to the very latest version of Media Composer (MC8)?

A: Avid will make available to all current subscribers not only the latest version of Media Composer, but the last two major releases as well. So today that means you get access to MC8, MC7 or MC 6.5

Q: What if I have Avid Symphony

A: Avid has a support plan for you as well. For just $299 ($285 from Videoguys) you get the same benefits as the Media Composer Support contract, plus any and all updates for your Symphony option as well. You do not need to purchase a Media Composer support plan and a Symphony support plan. You only need the Annual Support Plan Crossgrade from Symphony for $299 ($285 from Videoguys). This has caused some confusion, because Avid calls this a Crossgrade. It does not add Symphony to your Media Composer. If you own Media Composer and you wish to add the Symphony option you can for $749 ($699 from Videoguys).

Q: What 3rd party software do I get with my renewal/support plan

A: None. Your renewal is just for the Avid software. Any 3rd party software you already own you can keep using. If you need to upgrade any of the titles, you will have to go to the software plug-in vendors website.

Q: What's the deal with ScritpSync & PhraseFind?

A: Unfortunately Avid has been unable to negotiate a license deal going forward for these titles. Videoguys still has inventory of both titles on hand, so you can still purchase them. We must warn you that they are NOT supported on MC8. You will have to stay on MC7 if you need to use either ScritpSync or PhraseFind.

1 Year Annual Support Plan & Renewal for Media Composer

1 Year Annual Support Plan Crossgrade from Symphony

1 Year Annual Support Plan & Renewal for Teachers, Students & Institutions

Media Composer Production Pack for Students, Teachers & Institutions

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