At a special event at this week's NAB 2004, Apple on Sunday introduced Shake 3.5, a new version of its compositing and special effects tool for cinema and video. The new version of Shake features new shape-based morphing and warping capabilities that rely on spline tools, improves Rendezvous networking and more. It's available now as a paid upgrade for Shake 3 users.
Shake 3.5's Shake Qmaster network render manager has been improved in this version; the Rendezvous-enabled system can handle distributed rendering tasks for both Shake and Alias' Maya 3D rendering and animation software. Support for 16-bit RGB and 10-bit YUV QuickTime formats has been added also.
At a special event at this week's NAB 2004, Apple introduced Xsan, a Storage Area Network (SAN) file system priced at US$999 per system. The new file system is aimed at users in video and other businesses looking for high-speed access to centralized, shared data where even conventional Local Area Networks (LANs) might still be too slow.
Xsan is a 64-bit cluster file system designed to work with Mac OS X. It provides multiple computers with concurrent file-level read/write access to shared volumes over Fibre Channel, and it's certified to work with Apple's pro applications. Up to 64 users can simultaneously access a single storage volume using Xsan. Features include metadata controller failover, Fibre Channel multipathing, file-level locking, bandwidth reservation, and flexible volume management.
I am not going to be doing any HD cam work in the near future, but this new Motion app looks pretty cool. I have used DVD Studio Pro since version 1, and that update also looks pretty nice as well.
What I was confused about when I heard about FCP HD, I thought it was going to be a (another) split of FCP. I mean we have Final Cut Express now - don't even get me started with that.
FCP HD is really FCP 4.5, and it is a free upgrade too. I am glad it is free, seeing as FCP 4 just came out not too long ago.