Fast Electronics has announced a strategic partnership with Compaq
Computers, resulting in a turnkey editing solution designed to meet the demands of today’s advanced users.
The system offers seamless integration of non-linear and linear editing, off- or on-line quality editing and
scalable compression from 2:1 up to 100:1. Two different systems cover the needs of existing markets; all
you add are the analog VCRs.
The Huston Advanced Research Center (HARC) is using digital wavelet
theory to bring high-quality video to PCs. The new HARC software uses wavelets to compress and encode
the attributes of an image into a small amount of data. The result is a very smooth (38 frames per second)
lifelike image. The software, called HARC-C, will compress an image to nearly 1/100 its original size
without noticeable loss of clarity.
Megamotion 1.08 ($995)
Alpha Systems Lab
2361 McGraw Avenue
Irvine, CA 92714
The newest release of Alpha Systems Lab’s Megamotion now offers full-motion, full-screen video at
better than VHS quality. The package includes new hardware-assisted software for transitions and special
video effects. The board now supports three NTSC sizes including 320×240 pixels at 60 fields per second
and 640×480 at 30 fields per second.
FlexCap Video Camera/capture ($795)
10925 Bren Road East
Minneapolis, MN 55343
Here is a video camera/capture board combo designed specifically for the Windows environment. The
camera mounts directly into the drive bay of any PC and includes digital capture functions, digital pan/tilt
and software-controlled white balance and shutter. FlexCap will support a second camera head for multi-
camera operations; each camera head supports two microphones.
Matrox Studio 3.0 ($13,490)
Matrox Electronic Systems Ltd.
1055 St. Regis Blvd.
Dorval, Quebec, Canada
Release 3.0 of this professional editing system boosts its non-linear editing performance while adding
interface capabilities for digital disk recorders and video servers. The new release also supports full A/B-
roll nonlinear editing, separate graphics layers, hardware-accelerated transitions and four audio tracks in
the nonlinear mode.
Movie Titler Lite ($99)
TV One Multimedia Solutions
1445 Jamike #8
Erlanger, KY 41018
This Windows-based titler uses existing TrueType fonts, offering easy scaling and positioning of text.
Movie Titler Lite offers numerous transitions, as well as standard vertical roll and horizontal crawl. All-in-
one interface places preview, text editor and script windows on the same screen.
Crystal Flying Fonts Pro 3.0 ($245)
3110 Patrick Henry Drive
Santa Clara, CA 95054
CrystalGraphics is best known for its TOPAS Professional 3D animation software. Flying Fonts takes
the powerful TOPAS rendering engine and applies it to text. The result is high-quality, 3D animated
After an easy installation, Flying Fonts presents you with a large work area and a Tool palette. Here you choose to write text or build shapes from polygons–these are the basic building blocks for your pictures and animations. When done editing in text mode, letters and words become objects that you can no longer edit as text.
Once in object mode, you can use several different tools to modify the text. You can stretch the height, width and depth of each element in your workspace. You can bevel or rotate the text (on three axes); a material window allows you to texture-map metals, glass, marble or wood effects onto your objects.
You animate your objects by choosing Assign Motion from the Tool palette. There are sixteen different motion paths, and of which you can modify in both direction and sequence. You can select and save the motion, rotation axis, direction and path length of your animation.
This describes just the very basics of how you build a scene. At a more advanced level, you can
combine multiple scenes into Scripts, create your own 3D objects, set lighting and modify colors or
You render and save your work as an .AVI file. Three different rendering schemes are available, at several resolutions up to 640×480 pixels. Expect some downtime if you render your models at full
resolution–this can be a lengthy process even with a fast Pentium computer.
Crystal Flying Fonts Pro 3.0 for Windows is a lot of fun to work with and makes truly eye-opening graphics and titles. The price is unbeatable as well. If you’re looking for titling software, you’d do well to check this one out.
Ease of Learning: (4)
Ease of use: (4)
TransJammer Volume I ($99)
Elastic Reality, Inc.
925 Stewart Street
Madison, WI 53173
TransJammmer is a digital transition plug-in for Adobe Premiere, Avid VideoShop, and In:sync
RAZOR and RAZOR PRO. This is a great tool for creating unique transitional effects between still and
moving images. TransJammmer’s transitions enhance video productions from the advanced to professional
levels, as well as making for great multimedia slide shows or presentations.
TransJammer is available in Macintosh/Power Macintosh and Windows versions. The Macintosh/Power Mac plug-in for Adobe Premiere and Avid VideoShop require a math co-processor and 32-Bit Color Quick Draw. Transjammer recommends an Apple Power Macintosh for best performance.
Windows users require Adobe Premiere version 4.0 or later; the memory and operating system
requirements for Adobe Premiere for Windows are sufficient for the TransJammmer plug-in. If you are
using RAZOR or RAZOR PRO for Windows you’ll need a 486DX or better and must be running Windows
3.1 or later.
Before you get started with TransJammer, it’s best to have a basic understanding of how transitions work within these different programs. Once you feel comfortable with transitions and how they work, TransJammer’s point and click interface makes it a cinch to use. When you select an effect, a Settings dialog box appears. From there, you can see a description of the selected effect and apply variations to it. You can, for example, flip the effect vertically, horizontally, or even run it in reverse. Once you build a transition, further modification is impossible–you’ll have to delete the transition and replace it with a new one.
TransJammer offers a great selection of over 100 new broadcast-style transitions that will certainly enhance your projects. It has some wipes that are based on real-world objects, like rocketing space shuttles and a steaming cup of coffee. Cool stuff! Transjammer makes for a cheap and easy “upgrade” without the hassle of a complete software installation.
Ease of Learning: (4)
Ease of use: (3)