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Old April 5th, 2004, 03:07 AM   #1
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AVID Product Breakdown

There seems to be many different Avid's. You've Got Avid DV, Avid DV Express (I think), regular Avid... I dunno. I just know there are a ton of different Avid products. Can anyone give me the Avid heirarchy starting with the biggest and best Avid (yes, I mean the Cinema version) all the way down to the Avid that kids use to edit video in Kindergarden? I'd like to know what they are all called and any differences. Also, do they all share a similar interface? For example, if I learned on Avid Express DV Hi8 Meganon 3.5, would the interface to the Grandaddy mega cinema Avid seem familiar to me? Thanks.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 04:06 AM   #2
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Avid is at the high end, but recently has made software geared to non-broadcast professionals. If you're interested in Avid's products, I suggest going to their website and visiting review sites.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 11:11 AM   #3
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Ted,
The AVID website has all the info you need. But A quick answer regarding the interface is yes. If you learn Avid FREE DV you will be roughly familiar iwth the basic avid interface and workflow. FREE DV is a very limited product though, much like iMovie or Windows Moviemaker.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 01:01 PM   #4
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I learned on Avid Media Composer, and the new cheapo Xpress Pro is very similar. I believe Media Composer has been replaced by Adrenaline. And at the top end is the HD version and also Symphony. The cheap firewire systems start out with the free one, then Xpress DV and then Xpress Pro. Xpress Pro puts back most of the features from Media Composer that they lost in the first XpressDV version.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 02:49 PM   #5
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Go to the Avid website, then products, and you will see the page I copied here. Within each of the categories, you can click on "more" and it will tell you about all the available Avid products in that category. You probably don'twant "Broadcast." You may want to look under "Finishing and Compositing" for some of the high end products, and under HD if you're shooting HD. I'd skip "Storage & Workgroups." You'll most likely find more of what you're looking for under "Video Editing." Symphony is at the high end of that heap and a system will probably set you back $100K or so, plus you'd need a Digibeta deck or DV50 deck, etc. Media Composer has sort of been the standard of the industry for a long time and it can do most of what most people do in terms of high end editing, and you can put Digibeta, DV50, etc., into it. If you are shooting a DV25 format, there's really no serious reason to have anything other than XpressPro, in my opinion. With a high end Mac, 3 monitors and the software, you're probably looking at under $8K. Add another $4K or $5K for a deck and a few other goodies and you're in business.

Broadcast
Built to make news, Avid's line of world-class broadcast solutions including the Avid Unity for News system gives broadcasters access to the most complete, most thoroughly integrated, and most feature-rich news production solution available anywhere. [more]
* Finishing & Compositing
Whether you're onlining the latest prime-time drama or compositing a hot new commercial with eye-catching effects, Avid has a solution to fit your needs. By offering a wealth of real-time finishing and effects features at uncompressed quality, Avid ensures that you spend more time perfecting your work instead of rebuilding it. [more]
* HD
High Definition video is a rapidly growing format in acquisition and postproduction. Material captured in HD is considered more future-proof than SD video, yet itís also lower-cost and easier to manage than film. To help postproduction professionals capitalize on the growing HD trend, Avid offers a wide variety of solutions. [more]
* Storage & Workgroups
Collaboration is key to a successful production studio. Whether itís the Avid Unity family of shared storage solutions, productivity tools like Avid Unity MediaManager and Avid NetReview, streaming solutions like the Trilligent Cluster, or local storage options like the MediaDrive rS family, Avid will help you stay connected. [more]
* Video Editing
There's a reason why so many editors consider Avid the de facto standard for video editing. No matter where in our product line you start, you'll be working in an editing environment that has led to countless award-winning films and television shows. And as your needs grow, Avid's solutions grow with you, making sure that none of your media or knowledge gets left behind. [more]
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Old April 5th, 2004, 03:04 PM   #6
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No idea why this thread got moved... should be in NLE editing.
As to Heirarchy.

Symphony, Composer are high end systems costing megabucks incorporating specifically designed hardware/computers with proprietary software. Owned by Studios and Editing houses. This is the equipment that feature films are "finished on". Even those like "Full frontal" which were cut on Final Cut Pro were finished on Avid. If you cut a film on your Xpress pro, you can take it online on a composer and finish it out. The files transfer over. This allows for working on a project on low cost systems, and finishing them on high cost/high rental systems.

Adrenaline and Nitris are part of the DNA family, incorporating some Digital Nonlinnear Accelerators (DNA) that work in conjunction with your store bought (or turnkey) computer system. Very fast, very powerful, real time and can be as expensive as you like... figure 10-20k.

Express Pro with MOJO. - A package that combines a portable DNA unit (The mojo) with the software. Figure about $3400 for mojo and software. Allows for realtime editing and some uncompressed (601) processing.

XPRESSPRO ONLY- The software without the Mojo. Still a good deal when run on a fast computer - $1600 bucks or so, great for cutting film and conforming. Lots of nice touches including 24p editing. Read up on www.avid.com Fantastic bonus software thrown in. (Boris, Sorenson, etc.)

XPRESSDV - Less than 700 bucks. Not quite as many bells and whistles as PRO - Doesn't cut film but a great product for DV only.

Student prices are available for XPress and Pro.

EXPRESS FREE - Free and fun. Basic cutting.


The interfaces are similar from the top down. Basically, teh same software is used on all the systems, with various levels of access "locked away" on the lower priced versions.
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Old April 5th, 2004, 04:00 PM   #7
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Thanks Richard. Sounds like Xpress Pro would be best for me, and not the DV version. Probably wouldn't need the MOJO, tough. I like how they spell "express"... kind of like X-treme. That way it can appeal to the skateboarder generation of morons like me! :)
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Old April 6th, 2004, 08:46 AM   #8
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I thought I'd add a bit to Mr. Alvarez's informative post.


1) DS (Digital Studio). Avid bought Softimage's program that is
capable of HiDef and surround sound at 24b/96K. Over $130K.
Considered best for short form work as the interface is not quite "avid" like.

2) Symphony. Hardware Meridien PCI cards make this system the backbone of
broadcast's "get it done" systems around the country. Still PC only(?).

3) Nitris (Outboard HD accelerator box that's not yet available TMK).

4) Adrenaline (Outboard SD box who's latest software revision does
not work AFAIK) $25K with the equivalent of Symphony's interface.

5) Express Pro with MOJO. - A package that combines a portable DNA unit (The mojo) with the software. Figure about $3400 for mojo and software. Allows for realtime editing and some uncompressed (601) processing, but NO SDI output.

XPRESSPRO ONLY- The software without the Mojo. Still a good deal when run on a fast computer - $1600 bucks or so, great for cutting film and conforming. Lots of nice touches including 24p editing. Read up on www.avid.com Fantastic bonus software thrown in. (Boris, Sorenson, etc.)

XPRESSDV - Less than 700 bucks. Not quite as many bells and whistles as PRO - Doesn't cut film but a great product for DV only.

Student prices are available for XPress and Pro.

EXPRESS FREE - Free and fun. Basic cutting.
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Old April 7th, 2004, 01:31 PM   #9
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Adernaline Rocks!!!

We almost bought the Symphony and then, lo and behold, the Adrenaline was released! The Symphony has a whole bunch of film based features that we don't need, so, for the money we were going to spend on the Symphony we are getting a kick-ass Adrenaline system.

We can't wait for delivery.

We currently have a Media Composer 4000 and an XPress, both Power Mac based and nowhere near as fast or powerful as they use to be.

The Adrenaline we ordered is loaded, including Adobe After Effects Professional, Saphire Plug-Ins for AVID, Adobe CS and Ocean System's dTective software for forensic video analysis.

1.75 TeraBytes of storage as well a 210 Gig project transfer drive, plus a whole lot more. Price including 2 years of AVID Tech Support and on-site install...$50K!

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Old April 7th, 2004, 04:56 PM   #10
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Is there a difference between After Effects Professional and Production Bundle? What are the differences between AE 5.5 and 6?
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Old April 7th, 2004, 05:03 PM   #11
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Can't complain about that price--that's not a whole lot more than Media Composer used to cost.
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