If NAB is Christmas in April then it’s not too early to get the wish list in the mail to Santa.
I’ll start with Final Cut Pro 6. Apple’s addition of Steve Bayes to the fold tells me Cupertino’s best and brightest are serious about professional workflow issues. Now that Apple owns Silicon Color and its Final Touch color correction software, I want Steve to have free reign to oversee the integration of the product with Final Cut Pro. Color correction is one of the few areas where Avid still holds a decided advantage over Apple.
Of course Avid’s other advantage is in the area of media management. As much as I love Final Cut Pro, I hate mangling media with it. Why can’t I consolidate a clip that hasn’t been assigned a reel number? Go ahead and warn me that I might be doing something I will later regret, but don’t make me drag excess media around when moving a project to a finishing suite.
For the record I’m not wishing for 4K support in any NLE. I don’t need it, and can’t peer far enough into the future to venture a guess when I might. It’s going to be fun listening in on the discussions about FCP needing to support the RED camera. It doesn’t. The worldwide market for 4K is too small for Apple to concern itself with. Apple, AJA, or some other player in the FCP ecosystem will support RED at 2K and move on. (AJA’s Kona card already does 2K.)
If Santa finds himself in Vegas this April, he should hand deliver a lump of coal to Avid’s marketing team if the death of the Xpress Pro line isn’t announced. Time to say goodbye to the Composer poser. Media Composer software-only should be priced around $1,300 to replace it. Media Composer software outright rocks, but it doesn’t deliver $5,000 of value to most users.
Moving on to motion graphics. I want to see Motion and Shake merged into a single, high end application. Had such a thing been fast tracked to be out well before After Effects 8, Apple would have solidified FCP’s position in advance of the Adobe’s Production Suite for the Mac hitting the streets.
Another nice stocking stuffer for NAB would be an announcement from Adobe that a public beta for After Effects 8 will be available immediately, as has been done for Photoshop CS 3. We Intel Mac users have been suffering with AE running under Rosetta for almost a year. It’s terrible. It’s by far the least stable application I’m running on my Intel Macs. It says a lot about After Effects that even with its stability issues, I’ve still not adopted Motion for much.
I’m pretty sure a bunch of elves won’t beat Steven Hawkings to the punch, but I wish I had a time machine so I cold go back to NAB 2006 and put down a grand for a RED camera. I’m not much of a shooter. I don’t really need RED, but a place in line for one could probably command a pretty penny on eBay. Of course a year from now I’ll bet we’ll be able to bid on at least half a dozen used REDs at any given time. I suspect a lot of people lined up for the slick 4k beast have as little need for it as I do, and they’ll learn that the hard way.
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