“My first response after taking Media 100 i for a two-hour spin? My head is still spinning. It exceeded my expectations in every way.”



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July 20
First Look: Media 100 i (part 1)
Major product announcement includes new tools for traditional editing

By Tim Wilson
Man About Town™
[email protected]

I have to confess just a little bit of nervousness when I approached Media 100 i for a hands-on session with its product manager Caren Anhder. I'd raised my own expectations pretty high, and stuck my neck out a little further than I was used to on behalf of a product that wasn't even shipping.

Having used Media 100 for five years, computers for another 10 before that and editing video since the late 1970s, I know as well as anyone that a test ride is hardly the same as a thorough shakedown in a production environment. With 4,000 hours logged behind the wheel of Media 100, though, I think I had a pretty good idea of what to look for, even in a short session. My first response after taking Media 100 i for a two-hour spin? My head is still spinning. It exceeded my expectations in every way.

I should have known that there was something different about Media 100 i, simply from how far out the announcement was made before shipping, a departure for a company that plays its cards notoriously close to its vest. In the past, Media 100 users have had reason to suspect that the company may have been bluffing when they said they had winning cards in the hole. Not this time. As Caren laid out her hand, I saw that this was a big winner.

(I'm not sure where the card metaphor came from, but I'll stop it now. I'm done with the car metaphor too.)

"I don't know that we've ever announced a product this big, this far out," Anhder says. "It's a measure of how far along we are at this point, and our confidence that we can put the finishing touches on development in the timeframe we announced."

It's clear talking to her, though, that some of the reason for the uncharacteristic earliness of the announcement comes from Anhders's own excitement with the product. "I'd been walking around the company asking, 'Can I tell yet? Can I tell yet?'" she confesses with a laugh. "When they finally told me yes, I think they were ready for me to get out of their hair for a long, long time, so I'll be on the road for a while."

It's the little things
Part of her lengthy road trip included a stop at New York's Macworld expo, where I was delighted to meet her and take a look at Media 100 i in person. One of the things that immediately impressed me is that, as powerful as Media 100 i's new features are, they won't get in the way of current Media 100 users who want to edit in the way they're used to. As excited as I am by Media 100 i's new technologies, the fact is that I'm still largely a traditional editor myself, so my first article in this series will focus on these core tasks.

I'll mention some of the "little things" first, since we who use Media 100 on a daily basis know that "little things" are anything but. I mentioned that the 2 gig file limit has been lifted, but it bears repeating front and center. The volume has to be formatted HFS+, but that's all there is to it.

That's not exactly a little thing, I suppose, but this is: the hopping CTI is dead. To keep it locked down, hit the Caps Lock key, the perfect modifier.

Reel names now show up in a pop-up menu in the Digitize Window, another long-requested feature.


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