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January 09, 2004

Table of Contents

Ulead Debuts DVD MovieFactory 3 at CES
Roxio Unveils Toast with Jam 6
nNovia Delivers Enhanced QuickCapture A2D DVR
EzQuest Introduces Boa Slim and 8X DVD±RW Drives
Contour Design Unveils Key Composer at MacWorld Expo
Fujifilm Announces New Dye Coating for High-Speed and High-Cacpacity Recording
Macrovision Files Patent Infringement Lawsuit Against 321 Studios
Digital Anarchy Announces Text Anarchy 2.1
Around Macworld in a Day

Ulead Debuts DVD MovieFactory 3 at CES

Ulead Systems, Inc. has announced DVD MovieFactory 3 Disc Creator, a major upgrade of its PC consumer DVD creation software. DVD MovieFactory 3 Disc Creator offers an integrated suite of DVD creation tools for DVD and CD burning. The software enables a range of authors from home users to business managers to create polished DVD movies, and photo slideshows, according to slideshows. Users can also burn music and data to disc. DVD MovieFactory 3 Disc Creator offers significant enhancements over version 2, including motion menus and chapter buttons with real-time preview; new audio features, including Dolby AC-3 support; and enhanced video editing tools, such as the ability to add transitions and text to videos and photos. The software provides compatibility with all DVD formats, including video recorded on set-top DVD recorders and DVD camcorders.

Ulead DVD MovieFactory 3 Disc Creator will be available in mid-January for an estimated SRP of $99.95 in North American retail stores, catalogs and from ulead.com. At the same time, DVD MovieFactory 3, a basic version of DVD MovieFactory, will be available as an electronic download at ulead.com for an estimated SRP of $49.95. For more information on the basic version of DVD MovieFactory 3 and user and competitive upgrade prices go to ulead.com.

Ulead has also announced a North American agreement with Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc. to include Ulead's Movie Factory with the Pioneer DVR-A07, Pioneer's new multiple format "8x8" DVD/CD internal writer.

www.ulead.com
www.pioneerelectronics.com

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Roxio Unveils Toast with Jam 6

Roxio, Inc. has unveiled Toast with Jam 6, the newest version of their CD and DVD burning software for the Macintosh, enhanced with studio-quality audio tools. Roxio will previewed Toast with Jam 6 at Macworld. Toast with Jam 6 combines the entire Toast 6 Titanium suite with Jam 6 mixing and mastering software, BIAS Peak Express stereo editing software, and Dolby Digital sound encoding software.

With the Jam software, Mac users can create DJ-quality CD mixes and masters, according to Roxio. Peak Express helps users edit and enhance music files or improve the soundtracks in their home video files. They can also create DVDs with Dolby Digital sound quality, with up to 30 minutes more video on a disc while maintaining audio fidelity. In addition, the new DVD Music Album creates DVDs with hours of full-quality music and on-screen menus.

Toast with Jam 6 accepts all audio, video, and image formats recognized by QuickTime and is designed for use with iTunes, iMovie, and iPhoto. Toast with Jam works with most CD and DVD recorders, including Apple's SuperDrive as well as multi-format DVD recorders.

Toast with Jam 6 will be available online and at retail in North America and throughout Europe and Asia in March. The suggested retail price is $199.95 (USD). Existing Toast, Jam, Toast with Jam, Easy CD Creator, and Easy CD & DVD Creator retail customers are eligible for a $30 mail-in rebate on top of any other discounts at the point of purchase. Details are included in the retail product. A Jam 6 upgrade will be available for $99.95 for customers who have already purchased Toast 6 Titanium.

www.roxio.com

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nNovia Delivers Enhanced QuickCapture A2D DVR

nNovia Inc., the Silicon Valley OEM manufacturer of professional Digital Video Recorders (DVRs) is now shipping QuickCapture A2D, which was announced during fall 2003, with enhanced features. QuickCapture A2D offers tapeless recording from analog or digital sources, IEEE 1394 connectivity with "edit-ready, render-free" AVI Type-2 material, and playback of source material in either analog or digital formats, according to A2D. QuickCapture A2D also is an analog/digital media converter, allowing source material in one format to be output in the other. It is available in 40GB, 60GB and 80GB models, providing up to six hours of total recording time for NTSC or PAL material.

In addition to support for both SBP-2 and AV/C protocols, up to 99 "bins" for "organize as you acquire" convenience, and compatibility with both computer-based and standalone editing systems, QuickCapture A2D has been enhanced to include support for the MOV (QuickTime) file format, which allows QuickCapture A2D to be integrated into Mac-based editing stations using Final Cut Pro software.

QuickCapture A2D also supports slow-motion playback is now available in both forward and reverse at speeds from 1/2X (half-speed) through 1/32X (less than 1 frame per second). An NTSC Brightness control has also been added to make it easier for users to view their content in a wide variety of lighting conditions. Finally, nNovia has improved their "bin" feature to include automatic mark insertion and better search capability. Marks are now inserted automatically at the start and end of every clip, while the user still retains the ability to add extra marks during the record process. Users can now move quickly from clip to clip and from mark to mark in both forward and reverse directions. QuickCapture A2D is available for immediate delivery. Pricing begins at under $1400.

www.nnovia.com

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EzQuest Introduces Boa Slim and 8X DVD±RW Drives

EZQuest introduced its Boa Slim dual-format DVD±RW external drive at MacWorld Expo. The super-small drive comes with both a FireWire and a USB 2.0 port and Mac and PC authoring and backup software. It weighs less than a pound and measures 6" by 5.5" by .75". It writes at 2X for DVD±R, 2.4X for DVD+RW, 2X for DVD-RW, 16X for CD-R, and 8X for CD-RW, and it reads DVDs at 8X and CDs at 24X speeds.

The Boa Slim Dual-Format drive comes ready to use, and includes software, a carrying case and a cable. Its Mac authoring software includes Pixela IMX for encoding iMovies to MPEG-2 and burning DVDs, and Charismac for burning CDs and DVDs. Its PC authoring software includes Sonic MyDVD for authoring DVD movies, and burning DVDs and CDs. Mac and PC versions of Retrospect Express, for scheduling automatic backups, are also included.

The drive is compatible with Mac OS 8.6, Mac OS X, and Panther; and Windows 98SE, ME, 2K, and XP. It is available now at an MSRP of $319. (A USB-only version is also available at an MSRP of $299.)

EZQuest also introduced its fast Boa 8x dual-format DVD±RW external drives. The new drives provide the highest speeds current technology allows. They write to DVD±R at 8X; DVD±RW at 4X; CD-R at 24X; and CD-RW at 10X speeds, and they read DVDs at 12X and CDs at 40X speeds. In addition, they feature new technology that offers very reliable recording during high-speed writing; precise recording onto discs that may be warped or uneven; auto-adjustable writing that minimizes deterioration of DVD-RW discs; and enhanced stability during high-speed recording and playback.

The Boa 8x FireWire model is available in two versions. One bundles Toast Lite and Dantz Retrospect Express software, and has an MSRP of $249. The other features powerful Toast Titanium and Dantz Retrospect Express, and has an MSRP of $299. A USB 2.0 model is also available at an MSRP of $249. It comes bundled with Sonic My DVD and Dantz Retrospect Express.

The new drives are compatible with Mac OSX, Windows 98SE, ME, 2000, and XP. They come ready to use with software, a carrying case and a cable, and are shipping now.

www.ezq.com

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Contour Design Unveils Key Composer at MacWorld Expo

Contour Design, Inc., a leading provider of innovative, ergonomic computer input devices, has released of Key Composer, a new keystroke macro creation and management functionality for its ShuttlePRO V.2 multimedia jog/shuttle controller. Contour Design featured the ShuttlePRO V.2 with Key Composer for Macintosh at this MacWorld Expo. With Key Composer, Macintosh audio/video application users can now assign multiple keystroke combinations, or macros, to execute from a single button on the ShuttlePRO V.2. These macros can be executed either all at once, or step by step, giving ShuttlePRO V.2 users much more control over audio/video applications. In Final Cut Pro for example, users can now automate repetitive multi-step tasks; group similar commands, views, or tools to a single button; control their VTR or camcorder with precision.

The ShuttlePRO V.2 is pre-programmed to make editing fast and easy right out of the box for many leading audio and video applications, according to Contour Design, providing productivity for users across their entire production workflow. Supported Macintosh applications include Apple Final Cut Pro and Final Cut Express, Avid Express DV, Alias Wavefront Maya, Digidesign ProTools, Emagic Logic Audio, Macromedia Flash MX, MOTU Digital Performer, and Steinberg Cubase SX and Nuendo. Through a control panel interface, the ShuttlePRO V.2 is easily programmed to work with a range of applications.

Key Composer is built into Version 2.5 of the Macintosh driver for the ShuttlePRO V.2, available via free download from the Contour Design Web site. A version for Windows users is also available. The ShuttlePRO V.2 is available now through Contour's extensive network of distributors and resellers. The suggested retail price of the ShuttlePRO V.2 is $129.95.

www.contourdesign.com

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Fujifilm Announces New Dye Coating for High-Speed and High-Cacpacity Recording

Fuji Photo Film U.S.A., Inc., has announced the development of a patented, organic dye that will eventually allow DVD-R recording capabilities at speeds spanning 1X to 16X. Additionally, Fujifilm displayed how this new dye coating can be used in the manufacture of a Blue Violet-laser write-once optical disc, with recording capacity of 23.3GB. The environmentally friendly organic substrate is well suited for mass production, according to Fujifilm, and is designed to utilize already existing spin-coating manufacturing technology.

www.fujifilm.com

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Macrovision Files Patent Infringement Lawsuit Against 321 Studios

Macrovision Corporation has sued 321 Studios LLC, charging that 321's DVD X Copy family of DVD backup software products infringes Macrovision's patented copy protection technology and also violates the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

321 makes and sells DVD-copying software products capable of activating Macrovision's patented Analog Copy Protection process, according to Macrovision, without license or authorization from Macrovision. In these cases, 321's products allow users to make new unlicensed DVD disc copies that contain Macrovision's patented ACP. On playback, such discs trigger the patented ACP methods within licensed DVD players. In addition, depending on the particular product and version used, 321's DVD-copying products can either prompt users to disable ACP or automatically disable ACP without prompting the user, Macrovision says. The suit charges that 321 therefore violates both Macrovision's patents and the DMCA, which prohibits bypassing of copy protection mechanisms. The DMCA specifically recognizes Macrovision technology as a broadly adopted copy protection system that cannot legally be bypassed.

Macrovision holds all rights, title and interest in and to a number of U.S. Patents that cover the Macrovision ACP methods and apparatus, including U.S. Patent No. 4,631,603 "Method and apparatus for processing a video signal so as to prohibit the making of acceptable video tape recordings thereof" and U.S. Patent No. 4,819,098 "Method and apparatus for clustering modifications made to a video signal to inhibit the making of acceptable videotape recordings."

www.macrovision.com

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Digital Anarchy Announces Text Anarchy 2.1

Digital Anarchy, a provider of special effects software for Adobe, Apple, and Discreet products, has announced the availability of Text Anarchy 2.1 for After Effects and Final Cut Pro. Text Anarchy 2.1 is the newest version of Digital Anarchy's plug-in, and includes several feature enhancements for creating and animating text in After Effects and Final Cut Pro.

Text Anarchy 2.1 includes many product optimizations, the most significant of which is improved font support. Other key improvements in Text Anarchy 2.1 include OpenType support, improved support for foreign language character sets, improved speed in Final Cut Pro 4.1, and bug fixes and other improvements.

Text Anarchy 2.1 is composed of eight versatile filters that provide specific methods for producing a wide variety of text effects, ranging from randomly animating text for background effects to creating effects for titles. Some of the filters use particle systems specifically designed for text, while others allow the animation of characters on a letter-by-letter basis or by using paths to control the look and attributes of the text.

Text Anarchy 2.1 is free to existing Text Anarchy 2.0 users. Regularly priced at $149, Text Anarchy 2.1 for After Effects is available now for $129 until January 30, 2004. For Final Cut Pro users, the cost is $99 until January 30, regularly priced at $119. Owners of version 1.0, called Elements of Anarchy: Text, can upgrade for $89 until January 30, regularly $99. Text Anarchy is compatible with After Effects 4.1 and higher and on Mac OS 8.6 and higher (including OS X), and all Windows variants.

www.digitalanarchy.com

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Around Macworld in a Day

Apropos of almost nothing, a string of Elvis Presley tunes boomed out of the PA for those awaiting Steve Jobs' entrance onto the Moscone Center's stage in San Francisco for his Macworld 2004 keynote presentation. (It was apropos of almost nothing, because while "Ready Teddy" and "Too Much" appropriately captured the audience's sense of anticipation, "Hound Dog" and "Don't Be Cruel" don't exactly convey corporate confidence.) Notable in its absence, at least to those of us inclined to look to for soundtracks to our lives, was "All Shook Up." Maybe event organizers knew that, despite the unveiling of Final Cut Express 2.0, iLife '04, and the new Xserve G5 and Xserve RAID, Jobs wouldn't be announcing anything earth-shaking in the two hours to come.

Jobs began his speech by announcing that 60,000 viewers in 100 countries were viewing the keynote via broadband (which explains how EMedia was able to file this report from our Madison office) and playing Apple's famous "1984" commercial for the first Macintosh, introduced almost exactly 20 years ago (January 24, to be exact. In fact, Jobs spent a good portion of his speech celebrating Apple's past—both the past 12 months and the past 20 years—without dropping any new totally new pieces of hardware or software.

But since Apple just released the Panther OS in October (and Jobs claims that 9.3 million users, or about 40% of Apple's installed base, is now using a version of Mac OS X), and the G5 has only been out a few months longer, the lack of brand new toys didn't really come as a surprise. And the changes to Final Cut Express should be enough to make Mac-based digital video editors take notice.

Express Delivery
First and foremost, Final Cut Express 2.0 offers batch capture, the one glaring omission in the initial version of the software. Running a close second—since its end-user benefits will depend on the speed of that user's machine—is the addition of RT Extreme, which renders effects, transitions, and compositing in real time (but requires a processor speed of at least 500mHz). FCE 2 also includes a Safe mode that prioritizes quality over speed.

While the GUI doesn't bring any significant changes from the last version (itself an almost carbon-copy of Final Cut Pro), it's more customizable. Editors can control the height of video and audio tracks independently in the timeline, and they can add shortcut buttons for their most frequently used functions. Color correction is still only two-way, but that's proved to be plenty for FCE's largely prosumer market. Final Cut Express 2.0 is available immediately for $299, with an upgrade for current Final Cut Express users available for $99.

Jobs introduced iLife '04 by comparing it to Microsoft Office (which introduced its Office 2004 suite for the Mac during the keynote). "iLife is like Microsoft Office for the rest of your life," Jobs said, "letting you organize your projects outside of the office." The biggest change from iLife 3 is the addition of GarageBand, a scaled-down version of Apple's Soundtrack software. Shipping with 1,000 royalty-free audio loops and more than 200 effects as well as over 50 software-simulated instruments, GarageBand allows aspiring musicians to create their own tracks and soundtracks, then export them to CD, MP3, and AAC, or use them in other iLife applications.

The new iDVD 4 includes 20 new menu and motion menu themes, some including sub-menus, as well as a DVD Map View that shows a Finder-like overview of project assets and navigation. Also added are autoplay and slideshow looping capability, as well as a new Resource Meter that keeps track of how much space and how many tracks and menus you've used up.

The latest version of iMovie has plenty of new features, too, including faster effects rendering and audio and video track trimming directly in the timeline. Staying true to its consumer market, it also automatically selects appropriate compression for delivery to the Web, email, or Bluetooth-compatible devices. New additions to the transitions and Skywalker Sound Effects collections round out iMovie's latest offering.

The iLife '04 suite will be released on January 16 for $49. Jobs also announced Jam Pack, which adds more than 2,000 loops and 100 instruments to GarageBand and will sell for $99.

Serve Somebody
Not as eye- or ear-catching but just as valuable to the digital studio is the Xserve G5, which Jobs claimed ups the processing power on the G4-based Xserve by about 60 percent to more than 30 gigaflops. Enclosed in its 1U rack-mount form factor is a new system controller, three Serial ATA drive modules, optional internal hardware RAID and dual PCI-X slots that support 133mHz PCI-X cards. The Xserve G5 will be available in February in three standard configurations: single 2.0gHz processor with 512MB RAM for $2,999; dual 2.0gHz processors with 1GB RAM for $3,999; and a compute node cluster-optimized version with dual 2.0gHz processors for $2,999. The first two configurations come with an unlimited client license of Mac OS X Server, while the last carries a 10-client license. All configurations include dual FireWire 800 and USB 2.0 ports as well as a FireWire 400 and single USB 2.0 port on the front.

The new Xserve RAID is a 3U form factor rack storage system that offers up to 3.5TB storage capacity and 210MBps throughput, as well as support for Windows- and Linux-based computing environments. Available immediately, the 1TB configuration sells for $5,999, while the 1.75TB and 3.5TB configurations sell for $7,499 and $10,999, respectively.

In Other News…
Jobs wasn't the only one with product upgrades or new product announcements. Roxio showed off its new Toast with Jam 6 audio editing and mastering software, with new features including Dolby Digital encoding, more flexible cross-fading, and BIAS Peak Express, the same stereo and editing package that comes with Final Cut Express. Jam 6 also creates DVD music albums with on-screen menus and the option to record in Dolby Digital sound. Toast With Jam 6 will sell for $199 when it's released in March.

Brand new from EZQuest is the Boa 8X dual-format DVD+/-RW drive, one of the first such external units available that's targeted specifically at the Mac user. Two FireWire bundles are available, one with Roxio Toast Lite and Dantz Retrospect Express for $249, the other with Toast Titanium and Retrospect Express for $299. A USB 2.0 bundle is also available with Sonic My DVD and Retrospect Express. EZQuest also introduced the Boa Slim 2X dual-format drive at the show.

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