Sony Media Software has launched new versions of Vegas and DVD Architect at the 2005 NAB Convention in Las Vegas. Vegas 6 ($600) and the Vegas+DVD Production Suite ($900) have been upgraded to add HDV support (optimized for Sony's HVR-Z1U HDV camcorder HVR-M1OU deck), SD and HD video capture, support for Blackmagicdesign's DeckLink capture and control device and a 5.1-channel Dolby Digital encoder. The product has more enhancements for Multi-processor support as well as added support for AAF import/export, VST audio effect filters and system-wide media management. DVD Architect 3 adds dual-layer authoring and burning, support for DLT, DDP and CMF output image formats, CSS and Macrovision encryption, Photoshop layers and multiple angles. Sony presents Vegas 6 as a platform that provides a "future-proof migration path for production professionals that have invested in the standard definition workflows of today; ensures a seamless transition to tomorrow's HD based formats; and offers support for a vast number of delivery and output options ranging from DVD to WMV HD."
Nero Announces DVD-R Dual-Layer Writing Capability
Nero announced the upgrade of Nero 6 to include the ability to burn dual-layer DVD-R discs in addition to DVD+R dual layer discs. Dual-layer DVD-R, like dual-layer DVD+R allows the storage of up to 8.5GB of data to a disc. The upgrade is a free download for Nero users at Nero's Web site, www.nero.com
Canon Announces Three New Mini DV Camcorders
Canon has announced three new Mini DV camcorders to its lineup: the Optura 50, the Optura 60 and ZR400. The Optura 50 and Optura 60 feature 2.2-megapixel imagers, and include 16:9 modes and additional digital still capture features, while the ZR400 utilizes a 1.33-megapixel imager.
Each of the camcorders include three selectable auto-focus areas for easy and creative still photo composition, a feature borrowed from Canon's PowerShot and EOS lines of digital still camera. The Optura 50 and Optura 60 also add additional control over focus points, metering methods, aperture and shutter speed settings.
The Optura 50 ($799) includes a 10x optical zoom lens, while the Optura 60 ($899) includes a 14x optical zoom lens. Both of the Optura camcorders feature optical image stabilization, manual aperture and shutter speed priority exposure modes, and a large lens-mounted manual-focus ring. The Optura 60 also includes a USB 2.0 connector for video transfer in addition to a FireWire connection, as well as a built-in video light. The ZR400 ($549) includes a 14x optical zoom lens. Canon also provides a 0.6x wide-angle attachment with the ZR400.