Self-help message board
How to contact us
Web links directory
Tips and advice
Help Me, I'm new!
Fair pricing petition
Premiere 6 (trial)
Paint Shop Pro 7 (trial)
How to get started with
computer video editing
Join our ongoing campaign
since Pinnacle bought FAST, there has been speculation on how real-time
functionality would be introduced to the FAST-based Edition DV editing
program. Development has been slow and secretive, but Edition 5 Pro
is claimed to be the solution we've being waiting for, and even adds
DVD authoring capabilities.
of FAST for its video editing software was a shrewd move - and demonstrated
the company's understanding that the DV market is becoming less dependant
on dedicated hardware and much more software-orientated. From the moment
FAST Studio was rebranded and remarketed as Edition DV, there has been
speculation over the implications for Adobe - Pinnacle being the biggest
buyer of OEM versions of Adobe's video editing software Premiere.
What's also been much talked about is how and when Pinnacle would combine
the highly-regarded Edition software with its own real-time PCI cards
to remove the need for rendering of effects, titles and transitions.
A first step was taken in that direction with Edition DV500, which teamed
Edition with the established DV500 editing card to provide a choice
of analogue and DV inputs and outputs, though real-time functionality
was restriced only to some simple transitions.
This combination was less than awe-inspiring, so many people's expectations
shifted to the company's more advanced hardware - the ProONE RTDV. Integration
of the ProONE and Edition seemed almost inevitable, but Pinnacle surprised
us all by announcing a radically new solution - Edition Pro.
Unlike the DV500 and ProONE PCI boards, Edition Pro's hardware is centred
around an AGP graphics card. The card, based on ATI's All-in-Wonder
Radeon 8500DV, takes advantage of the fact that AGP has much higher
bandwidth than PCI, and the card has an on-board graphics processor
to deliver effects in real-time. This is the first board of its kind
we've seen or heard about, but the concept of AGP-based video hardware
isn't new - CV columnist John Ferrick of DVdoctor Inc has long called
for such a product. But now that it's here, how well does it perform?
As with most other real-time editing cards, Edition Pro offers DV and
analogue inputs and outputs via a breakout box. The first disappointment
when examining the board's published features list was that it lacks
real-time previews via FireWire. Instead, there's only analogue output
of unrendered effects - through either composite or S-video channels.
What's more, unlike the Premiere-dependent DV500 DVD and ProONE RTDV
cards, Edition Pro provides no hardware assistance for MPEG-2 encoding.
And, on paper, that's a disappointment - the DV500's MPEG encoding is
among the best we've seen at an affordable mainstream price point.
As a DV editing system, DVC's machine performed well, being very
responsive and stable. We were able to complete a full project with
no crashing or hanging, and our only problems seemed to be related to
confusion on our part concerning the computer's graphics setup.
Even so, we're disappointed with Pinnacle and ATI for not providing
dual-display capabilities in the Edition Pro hardware, especially as
the addition of a second PCI graphics card brings with it so many complications
and limitations. It's also frustrating to see that the first serious
attempt at bringing real-time editing to Edition lacks real-time output
via FireWire. And, even though Edition Pro is cheaper than real-time
DV competitors - such as Canopus DV Storm and Matrox's RT.X100 - it
seems like a backwards step for Edition not to have this capability.
It's also worth observing that Edition Pro weighs in at a very similar
price to Pinnacle's own Premiere-based ProONE RTDV, which does have
RT output via FireWire.
But, Edition Pro's real-time capabilities are impressive and far more
powerful than those of the ProONE board. Edition itself is also a fine
editor that seems to get better with every revision. The interface is
more streamlined than in previous versions, but it's the DVD authoring
tools - and very high quality MPEG encoding - that really make the program
Authoring tools could be a little more intuitive, however, and we'd
like to see the early arrival of some more advanced features, such as
AC-3 encoding, CSS and Macrovision copy-protection options and the ability
to output to DLT - which is almost mandatory for creating masters for
mass-duplication. Edition does have the potential to take over from
Pinnacle's dedicated DVD authoring package - the awkward and fussy Impression
DVD Pro, but the right features need to be added. Overall, though, we're
very happy with Edition Pro, and feel that it takes Edition another
large stride in the right direction for the mainstream editing market.
Read the full
review in September 2003's Computer Video magazine.
Reviewed in September's
Edition 5 Pro
Archos DEx DVD-RW 2
PowerQuest Drive Image 7
back in the race with G5s
War and peace
Adobe After Effects 6
Pinnacle buys Dazzle
Lite Storm 2
JVC MPEG-2 widescreen camcorder
Iomega five-way DVD burner
Four-way burning Sony laptops