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Old August 15th, 2007, 10:19 PM   #1
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Whats the difference between Avid Liquid, Express and Vegas?

So what are the main differences mainly between the variations of avid, liquid, express, and has anyone used both avid and vegas and have an opinion of which is an easier to learn and overall easier workflow in regards to shooting Canon XHA1, HV20, XLH1 and working in high def 1080 through to output?
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Old August 16th, 2007, 08:37 AM   #2
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I can't really comment on the 1080 workflow, but I have used Avid, Liquid, Premiere and just started with Vegas. Personally I don't care for the Avid interface. Liquid 6 is my editor of choice at home. At work I have Premiere Pro 1.5, upgrading to 3 this week. I just installed Vegas 6 on my laptop. Overall, and I haven't done a full project with Vegas yet, I would say that I like the interfaces in this order:
Liquid
Premiere
Vegas
Avid

What's good is that you can download free trials of each and try them if you would like. It also depends on what your professional direction is. Avid is definitely the industry leader for high end professional editing, but the truth that I have found is that it doesn't matter, it's all about the end result, and what you as an editor are more comfortable with.
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Old August 16th, 2007, 09:29 AM   #3
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David: what are the HD output options in Liquid? Does it have any support for HD-DVD or Blu-ray authoring yet?
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Old August 16th, 2007, 12:02 PM   #4
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No support for HD-DVD or Blue-Ray yet, that I'm aware of. I'm still on v.6. It can output most of the HD formats. One thing about it, is that Pinnacle was a leader in mpeg2 GOP editing, way back to the DC2000 card days. They were really one of the first to offer it and if I'm not mistaken, Avid put some of their technology handling mpeg2 GOP editing into their Avid products once they bought them. I haven't used Liquid for HD yet, I have used PPro 1.5, but it edited using the Cineform codec. Which worked well.
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Old August 16th, 2007, 12:08 PM   #5
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Does Liquid support DVCProHD editing? I don't think Premiere Pro does and I haven't heard anything about Vegas for that either.
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Old August 16th, 2007, 03:45 PM   #6
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Liquid supports the 1080 flavor of DVCPROHD. 720p is currently not supported.

Liquid is a very nice NLE and is already setup as a highend uncompressed HD system. All that is missing is the HD in/out hardware. For years Liquid Chrome has been used for HD broadcast work. All Liquid products inlcuding regular and chrome use the exact same software. All that is different is the hardware.

If you get Liquid Pro you get an SD breakout box. This BOB allows your Liquid software to become an uncompressed SD in and out editing system. With this BOB you can also edit any form of HD that Liquid supports and it will output via the BOB to a SDTV via component, YC or composite. Even though it isn't a HD output it is still great for color corrections and to see just whats going on.

If you go with the Liquid software itself there are two ways to view HD in full resolution.
1. A simple click of a button will make the program viewer enlarge to full screen. If you are using dual 1920x1200 monitors then your second monitor can become a full 1920x1080 HD display while you edit the timeline on the first monitor. If you only have one monitor it is still great to see whats going on.
2. Liquid also has a feature with dual monitors where you setup the software to use that second monitor as a HD monitor. It does pretty much the same as option 1 but it makes everything a little bit easier to use because all the other windows will strictly use the first monitor since the system thinks there is only one monitor. Basically your second monitor acts like a HDTV. This option is a little picky about hardware though.

I almost always use option 1 these days because it is easy to quickly switch back and forth between single monitor editing and HD display and dual monitor editing with a quick button click.

In the future if you want uncompressed HD support you can upgrade to Chome XE and buy a AJA Xena card.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 03:48 PM   #7
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Xpress Pro doesn't support XH-A1 24F footage, nor is there an easy way to remove the pulldown from HV-20 24P footage. Vegas does work with 24F and you can easily use CineForm or some other programs/addins/utilities to remove the 24P pulldown.

If you're working on something that will be going to a large postproduciton house for more finishing, then Xpress would be the better choice (now sure about Liquid) b/c it conforms with the higher-end versions of Avid that those houses are likely to use.
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Old September 2nd, 2007, 02:03 AM   #8
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Let me amend what I said about HV-20 24P footage and Avid Xpress Pro. DVFilmMaker and TMPGenc Xpress 4.0 both remove the pulldown and create a file that can be imported into Avid. Neither Avid nor Vegas have native Canon 24P inverse-telecining.
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