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Copyright © 2004 -
Information Today, Inc.

November 21, 2005

Table of Contents

The Reel Deal: There is No Substitute for Hard Work
Leitch Ships VelocityHD Version 9.1 with HDV, VariCam, and More
Disc Makers’ Pico Brings Automated CD and DVD Duplication to the Masses
Autodesk Announces Updates for its Cleaner Desktop Encoding Software
NewTek Releases Eighth Free Texture Collection
AJA Debuts New XENA Video Capture and Playback Workflows for Windows XP
Boris Final Effects Complete AVX Now Available
Globalstor’s Newest DVD and Digital Dailies Solution Demonstrates Up To 99 Chapters Per Title at NAB Post +

The Reel Deal: There is No Substitute for Hard Work

There is no substitute for hard work when it comes to marketing your business. You are the one who must make the cold calls, attend the meetings, join the associations, and schmooze. By doing this, you'll turn contacts into friends, and people like to do business with friends. Wedding videography is very relationship-oriented when it comes to referrals. No wedding professionals want to risk their reputations recommending videographers unless they have a chance to meet them, see their work, and feel comfortable working with them.

I make it a point to attend as many networking events as I can. I'm also a member of the Wedding & Event Videography Association (WEVA), the Chicago chapter of the Association of Bridal Consultants, and the Illinois Videographers Association. I'm a social butterfly by nature, so I really enjoy these events and love to meet new people. Schmoozing has helped me more in business than acquiring any new piece of equipment.

I recently received a lunch invitation via email from a videographer who is looking to work in my market. I agreed to meet for lunch as I'm always more than willing to help out other videographers. At lunch, this person was nice enough and things were going well until he asked for "my support" in a project he wanted me to help promote. By my support, he meant he wanted me to contact the consultants I work with and invite them to a viewing party promoting his work (as well as the work of other videographers). I asked him why should I promote his work to my consultants when I offer the same type of coverage? If he would have taken the time to read my Web site he would have seen that.

I told him I have worked very hard over the years to make my contacts in the business and I couldn't believe he was asking me to call them on his behalf. I had met him for the first time that day at lunch! He said he felt he would have better luck if I recommended him as opposed to him cold calling the coordinators. He said cold calling doesn't work and it takes years to build relationships and he didn't have that kind of time. Excuse me? He didn't have time to network so he wanted to take advantage of the time I'd spent networking by having me recommend him to my coordinators. I told him cold calling does work because he cold-called me and I'm sitting here. I thought I would be talking with him about the path of wedding videography and perhaps providing him with a few marketing tips. I didn't realize he would ask me to contact my coordinators on his behalf. I would have passed on lunch if I had known his real agenda.

There's no such thing as luck in our business—or at least there's no sense in counting on it, or expecting opportunities to fall into your lap. "Luck" is just a euphemism for "hard work." Those who succeed in business do it the old-fashioned way: by working for it. When it comes to marketing, hard work will involve some cold calling and emailing people you don't know. Hard work is going out in the cold to attend that networking meeting when you would rather be at home sprawled out on the couch watching ESPN (or even Desperate Housewives).

Do you want to start building your own network but are not sure where to begin or even what to say? WEVA can help! WEVA is promoting the "Take a Bridal Consultant To Lunch Week" during the week of January 9, 2006. The promotion is timed to take place right when the wedding industry, including bridal shows and the bridal media, traditionally spotlights new developments in wedding planning. Early January is ideal as that's the time when most wedding videographers want to be ready and available to book new business following the Christmas holidays, which traditionally is the biggest period for engagement announcements.

The goal is for videographers to share with wedding planners information about new and exciting trends shaping professional wedding videography and their own work, and the wonderful results which can be achieved! This initiative is free to WEVA members and will take you step-by-step on how to begin your networking. Included in the materials being arranged for WEVA members by the WEVA Public Relations Committee are contact templates, topic templates, and results from the 2005 WEVA Nationwide Survey of Brides as well as other materials and tips for a successful lunch. The information will be complete when this article goes to press. It takes a village to raise media awareness and those videographers who take action will see the results as opposed to those who sit back and complain that "it won't work" and believe that "WEVA needs to educate the brides." Videographers need to be proactive instead of asking others to do the work for them.

For more information you can visit the WEVA Web site. I would like to hear from those of who have participated in the "Take A Bridal Consultant To Lunch Week." I want to know how it went and if it helped you and your business. Of course, you can still invite a consultant out to lunch at any time, but remember, the early bird gets the worm, so don't wait!

Kris Malandruccolo recently won a MarCom Creative Award for her column, The Reel Deal: FAQs for Videographers.

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Leitch Ships VelocityHD Version 9.1 with HDV, VariCam, and More

Harris Corporation has announced that version 9.1 of Leitch's VelocityHD non-linear editing (NLE) system is now shipping. This new release enhances the HD/SD NLE solution with support for the HDV high-definition format, variable frame rate processing for content from Panasonic's VariCam, broadened standard-definition format support, and more.

VelocityHD 9.1 supports direct IEEE-1394 ingest of both 1080i and 720p material from HDV devices. HDV content can be mixed seamlessly with other HD formats on the timeline. New processing for variable frame rate content from the AJ-HDC27 VariCam HD Cinema camcorder allows the removal of the material's non-active frames while recording the HD-SDI input stream, enabling support for 24fps VariCam content plus VariCam's "overcranking" and "undercranking" for in-camera off-speed effects.

VelocityHD editing enhancements include doubling the number of real-time, full-quality camera angles supported in HD multi-camera editing from two to four. VelocityHD 9.1's broadened, standard-definition format flexibility includes direct timeline support for DV25 material from many tapeless recording devices, and DVCPRO25 and DVCPRO50 content from Panasonic's P2 media-less memory-based products. VelocityHD 9.1 also supports project and media files from Leitch's standard-definition Velocity(tm) and VelocityQ(tm) editing systems. "

The VelocityHD non-linear editing system combines the innovative Altitude hardware platform with the acclaimed Velocity software interface, delivering exceptional high-performance, real-time postproduction editing flexibility. VelocityHD features full-quality, real-time HD playback of multiple video and dynamic graphics streams with true dual-stream, real-time HD transitions and effects. VelocityHD supports 1080i, 1080PsF and 720p frame formats at all common frame rates, with mixable compressed and uncompressed video. All VelocityHD(tm) systems also offer outstanding multi-stream, standard-definition editing performance.

VelocityHD version 9.1 is now available as a free download from the Leitch Web site, www.leitch.com, for all registered VelocityHD users.

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Disc Makers’ Pico Brings Automated CD and DVD Duplication to the Masses

Disc Makers has released the Pico, a single-drive automated CD/DVD duplicator at a low price of $699. With this release, Disc Makers intends to bring affordable DIY duplication to musicians, filmmakers, teachers, digital photographers, and small business owners.

The Pico joins the MicroUltra in Disc Makers' line--a large form-factor automated DVD to hit the market for under $1,000. The Pico delivers easy automated 16X DVD and 48X CD duplication in a small footprint. Measuring 7.1" x 15.75" and weighing only 6.6 lbs, the Pico features 25-disc capacity, a built in 3" and CardDisc adapter, and DiscForge software with audio, CD data, and DVD data editing software. The Pico allows users to back up audio and home-movie DVD collections, archive personal data, or create and duplicate CDs and DVDs for home, business, educational, or ministry projects.

The Pico includes the following:

  • A top-of-the-line 16x r DVD±R/48x CD-R drive with state-of-the-art throughput spee
  • Up to 6 full (4.7 GB) DVD±Rs per hour
  • Up to 12 full (700 MB) CD-Rs per hour
  • Built-in 3-inch disc and CardDisc adapter for creating trade-show giveaways or meeting leave-behinds.
  • Relay Mode - allows you to queue up multiple sets of masters at once.
  • Durability - the Pico can run unattended for hours
  • Easy-to-use Disc Forge software
  • Free lifetime technical support
  • Perfect fit guarantee--if you discover within thirty days that this product does not work for your needs, Disc Makers will give you full credit towards one that does.
  • 100 FREE Disc Makers Ultra 52x CDs or 50 16x DVDs with purchase, and discounted blank media pricing for life!

To learn more about Disc Makers' complete line of duplication hardware, visit www.discmakers.com/duplicators.

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Autodesk Announces Updates for its Cleaner Desktop Encoding Software

Autodesk, Inc. has announced Autodesk Cleaner 6.5 for Macintosh and Autodesk Cleaner XL 1.5 for Windows, the newest updates to its professional desktop media mastering and encoding software. Autodesk Cleaner is an industry standard application for encoding and optimizing video content for delivery formats ranging from the Internet and DVD to handheld mobile devices.

New to Autodesk Cleaner software is encoding support for DivX version 5.2 player for Cleaner XL 1.5 and DivX 6.0 player for Cleaner 6.5 for Macintosh. Also added is the Flix exporter from On2 Technologies‹that allows compressionists to publish video in .FLV and .SWF formats‹the internet video formats supported by Macromedia Flash, the most widely distributed content player over the Internet .

Cleaner XL 1.5 Windows is available now; Cleaner 6.5 for Macintosh is expected to begin shipping this winter. Suggested retail price for both products is US $599.00 for an individual license. Suggested retail upgrade pricing from Cleaner 6 Macintosh or Cleaner XL Windows to the current versions is US $125.00; Suggested retail upgrade pricing from Cleaner 4 or 5 to Cleaner 6.5 Macintosh or to Cleaner 1.5 XL Windows is US $179.00.


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NewTek Releases Eighth Free Texture Collection

NewTek, Inc. has announced the release of the eighth edition of NewTek's free Texture Collection. As with previous editions, this new set includes fifty high-resolution images useful for textures and reference available for free download at NewTek.com.

The total number of free texture and reference images available from NewTek is now at 400. The eighth edition of the texture collection contains images in the categories Concrete, Nature, Landscape, Soil and Wood. The images are suitable for use as is, and most can be easily processed for seamless tiling as well.

All textures are unretouched photographic images. The first 250 in the collection offer a resolution of 1600 pixels x 1200 pixels. For the sixth through eighth sets, most are at a resolution of 2304 x 1728, with a few images at lower resolutions. The textures are provided in JPEG format, for efficient download.

The first seven editions of the texture collection have been overwhelmingly popular, with tens of thousands of downloads since they were originally posted. NewTek plans to release additional sets of high-resolution textures from time to time and participants can sign up for notification of the release of new sets.

NewTek's Texture Collection, Eighth Edition, is available for free download at: http://www.newtek.com/freestuff.

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AJA Debuts New XENA Video Capture and Playback Workflows for Windows XP

AJA Video has announced the XENA LS and XENA LH video and audio I/O cards for Windows XP. The new XENA lineup marks AJA's entree into integrated video capture and playback solutions designed to fit a variety of creative workflows based on the Windows XP platform. XENA LH (PCI/PCI-X compatible) and LHe (PCIe compatible) support combined HD/SD workflows; XENA LS supports SD capture and playback. Both products will ship with AJA's own standalone deck-control, playback, and capture application, Machina, and a host of powerful plug-ins for seamless integration with leading graphics and effects applications. XENA LH, LHe, and LS will be available worldwide on November 30th, 2005.

XENA LH, LHe and LS cards are designed for deadline-driven, graphics and layer-intensive motion graphics workflows. The software interface for deck-control, playback and recording via AJA Machina, coupled with custom-coded plug-ins linking video input and output seamlessly into the interfaces of Adobe After Effects, Adobe Photoshop, Autodesk Combustion, and Eyeon Fusion provide significant workflow efficiencies to digital artists. Optimal file format support is offered in QuickTime and AVI, as well as in file-per-frame formats such as DPX, Cineon (LH/LHe), TIFF, TGA and BMP. "

XENA LH, LHe and LS will ship November 30th, 2005 to AJA dealers and system integrators worldwide. XENA LH and LHe will be available for a list price of $1790 (US) and XENA LS will be available for a list price of $995 (US). The optional KL-BOX is available for a list price of $299 (US).


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Boris Final Effects Complete AVX Now Available

Boris FX has announced the availability of a new version of Boris Final Effects Complete AVX (FEC AVX). FEC AVX is a collection of native plug-in filters and transitions that streamline workflow for Avid editors. More than 100 sophisticated effects animate directly in the Avid Effect Editor window.

One of the first Adobe After Effects plug-in packages, Version 4.0 now supports all Avid systems running on the AVX 1.0 architecture, including Avid DS systems. Avid Visual Extensions (AVX) is a plug-in architecture that dynamically extends the effects supported by Avid systems. Formerly known as ICEfx, these ICE hardware-accelerated effects are now available as a software-only solution. The initial release is for Windows only. A future release will add Macintosh support.

Most filters feature less than a dozen parameters; only a few simple adjustments are required to create totally unique organic effects. Users can quickly generate full-featured two-dimensional and three-dimensional animations including ball action, explosions, distortions, jet trails, and hair, according to Boris FX.

FEC AVX also delivers a range of unique auto-animating transitions. Ranging from graceful blurs to radical warps, FEC AVX lets you easily create dramatic effects with minimal adjustment. Version 4.0 highlights include:

  • More than 100 easy-to-use organic visual effects.
  • The easy-to-use licensing includes Electronic Software Download (ESD) and a 14-day trial version.
  • Dozens of auto-animating transition effects streamline workflow.
  • Kaleida, Griddler, VideoFragment and Tiler easily create complex switcher-style effects.
  • Dual-input effects let you create reflections, flow maps and bump maps.
  • Save parameters, including keyframe animation, to an Avid bin to reuse as templates.
  • An online help system is integrated into each filter. 

FEC AVX is not compatible with the older ICE versions that ran on the AVX architecture. FEC AVX is available bundled with Boris Continuum Complete AVX (BCC AVX). BCC AVX is a comprehensive suite of native plug-in filters and transitions for Avid systems. More than 170 filters extend the visual effects capabilities of Avid NLEs. BCC AVX offers powerful integration features including built-in motion tracking and the unique PixelChooser, which creates channel or region-based masks. Hundreds of presets and integrated online help provide fast and precise effects creation with a minimal learning curve. With multi-processor and OpenGL acceleration, BCC AVX provides a powerful and complimentary feature set to Avid nonlinear editing systems.

Final Effects Complete AVX and Continuum Complete AVX for Avid Xpress DV and Xpress Pro systems are each available through the BorisFX worldwide reseller channel or direct through BorisFX for $795 US SRP or purchase both solutions for $1,295 US SRP. Xpress DV or Xpress Pro users who own Red or BCC AVX, can purchase FEC AVX for $595 US SRP. Avid Media Composer Adrenaline, Symphony™ Nitris, Meridien and Avid DS users can purchase FEC AVX for $1995 US SRP. Adrenaline, Nitris, Meridien, and DS users who own Red or BCC AVX, can purchase FEC AVX for $1595 US SRP.


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Globalstor’s Newest DVD and Digital Dailies Solution Demonstrates Up To 99 Chapters Per Title at NAB Post +

During the NAB Post + tradeshow and exhibition being held at the Javits Convention Center in New York, November 15-17, Globalstor Data introduced the new DVD TransPro. Supporting a broad selection of high-quality image file formats, DVD TransPro offers film professionals a powerful means of electronic dailies distribution for convenient, view-anywhere, random access to the day's shoot.

Featuring a real-time capture and encoder, source preview/confidence check window, DVD Authoring, as well as streaming media format output, the new DVD TransPro also enables professionals to create up to 99 titles and store 99 Chapters per disc. Ideal for the rigorous demands of the professional video production industry, the DVD TransPro includes many key features including: graphic overlay capability during capture, create custom DVD templates, a separate template editor, thumbnail chapter images, as well as the ability to output to both Windows Media and QuickTime formats. The DVD TransPro is also built for video streaming production and long-term video archival.

The DVD TransPro is configured with Dual Xeon CPUs and 2048MB RAM running Windows XP Pro. A SATA-based 250GB hard drive and a high performance 16X DVD+/-R drive ensures, quick project turnaround as well as the ease-of-use and application flexibility. The DVD TransPro. The DVD TransPro imports time code, chapter points and chapter names with scene and take information from any ASCII standard EDL (Edit Decision List) from the associated dailies video and creates a DVD+/-R disc with complete, DVD menu control to as many as 99 chapters per title with up to 99 titles per DVD Disk. For added flexibility, chapters can be re-arranged or deleted prior to output to the DVD with the push of a button. DVD TransPro will also prompt the user to change reels or tapes when more than one EDL is being used. The DVD TransPro can also be used to store a copy of the DVD image or on the hard drive or network drive that can be recalled at anytime to burn additional DVD copies, or for archival purposes.

Available for direct sale through Globalstor Data or to OEMs for development into specific applications, the DVD TransPro is now shipping with a two-year factory warranty. DVD TransPro has an MSRP of $14,151 and includes SDI, Component and composite video inputs as well as Balanced, un-balanced and digital audio inputs. DVD TransPro is also available in an optional 5U rack mount solution incorporating 6TB or 9TB of fault tolerant storage ideal for an all in one centralized capture, archival or streaming media sever.


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