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NAB 2003: Day 2 in Las Vegas

A technological feast for Mac creative pros By Dave Nagel
If you read my preview of the NAB 2003 convention, you noted, no doubt, my sense that this year would be a feast of technological innovation not only for creative production as a whole, but for Macintosh creative production in particular. And so far, on this, the opening day for the show's exhibit hall, manufacturers and developers have not disappointed.

The NAB 2003 convention kicked off yesterday in Las Vegas with a round of huge announcements from the likes of Apple, Alias|Wavefront, Avid, AJA and others. And today the good news continues with new wares surfacing from Aurora Video Systems, Pinnacle Systems and others. It's a busy show, to say the least.


The news to date
Apple, of course, kicked things off with with major announcements of its own, all of it highly anticipated news, including the introduction of Shake 3, Final Cut Pro 4 and DVD Studio Pro 2. Shake will lose support for Windows in its next incarnation while boosting the feature set of the Mac OS X version beyond the Linux and Irix releases. Final Cut Pro 4 will be bundled with Cinema Tools and include more than 300 new features, including hundreds of real-time effects, scalable with processor power. And DVD Studio Pro will see a 50 percent price cut. You can find a roundup of Apple's announcements, including product details, at http://www.creativemac.com/2003/04_apr/editorials/applenabrnd030406.htm.

Alias|Wavefront, in an unexpected (but not unpleasant) announcement, revealed Maya 5 Complete and Unlimited. The Complete version for Mac OS X will include new rendering options, modeling tools and a wealth of new interface and workflow enhancements. News can be found at http://www.creativemac.com/2003/04_apr/news/maya5030406.htm.

Avid also surprised all concerned with the news of Xpress Pro and Mojo, a hardware and software combination offering an accelerated and enhanced version of Xpress DV. The news, of course, comes on the heels of a total revamp of Avid's lineup for Mac OS X, including a port of Symphony, the first version for the Macintosh period. The new version of Xpress will ship for $1,695, with the Mojo hardware running $1,695 separately. More information can be found at http://www.creativemac.com/2003/04_apr/news/avid030407.htm.

During Apple's press conference yesterday, we got a hint of a new version of CineWave that would support Final Cut Pro 4. Pinnacle Systems today confirmed this with the announcement of CineWave 4 for Mac OS X. The new version adds a variety of enhancements, including several new real-time effects and functions, as well as support for Final Cut Pro 4. It will be available as a software update this summer. More information can be found at http://www.creativemac.com/2003/04_apr/news/pinnaclecine030407.htm.


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