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View Full Version : MEDIA 100 on the ropes



Jim Capillo
02-26-2004, 07:52 AM
Looks like Media 100 is about to take a dixie.....

http://biz.yahoo.com/bw/040224/245266_1.html

From what I've read, they've come nowhere near moving the amount of units they need to move in order to be financially viable. I can't imagine this type of announcement is going to help sell units, either. Who wants to buy a box that may ultimately be unsupported/abandoned in a few months ?

Apparently, they've laid off most of the high end R&D tech guys and designers...... maybe Newtek should grab a few of them????

After this winter we've had, I bet most of them wouldn't mind the relocation from Massachusetts to Texas. ;)

UnCommonGrafx
02-26-2004, 08:09 AM
More coders! Give the VT board a very good workout...right before the HD board comes out and everyone sees why this NewTekian paradigm works: make a great board and great software to manage it. For five - fifteen years at a time. :cool:
Revolutionary, I tell ya.
[Preaching to the choir, I know...:D ]

robewil
02-26-2004, 10:07 AM
I cannot help but smile a bit about this.

Several years ago, when I was a dealer, the president of the (now defunct) computer chain called me into his office because he wanted to inform me that the company was going to become a full-blown Media 100 dealer and would drop the Newtek Video Toaster. He gave me the whole spiel of how the writing was on the wall for the demise of Newtek and that Media 100 represented the future.

Then again, he also said that by the year 2000, Macintosh would be the dominant personal computer.

"The other Robert Wilson"

Lightwolf
02-26-2004, 10:21 AM
Still, a shame really. Their system really does pack a punch, and, if they would have a decent HD future outlined (which they don't), I would have seriously considered one of their systems...

In the end it means that the market is shrinking at the higher end. Great, even more prosumer video editing to choose from, and less pro stuff. :rolleyes: ;)

Cheers,
Mike :P

Jim Capillo
02-26-2004, 12:56 PM
Well, I think they only sold about 300 systems at the higher price, certainly not enough to sustain a big company. I think they made a mistake in marketing to the lower end clients - not only do you have to sell 3 (or more) boxes to make the same ROI as 1 box at the original pricepoint, but these (lower end) folks typically can not afford the luxury of high priced tech support and other extras. M100 probably should've marketed to the mid/lower range in the first place, rather than try and compete with Avid, who was solidly entrenched with their high end hardware and branding.

Pretty much the same thing happened with Globalstreams when they "inherited" Play's assets. They immediately quadrupled their prices without doing one thing to the existing hardware (they eventually came out with a software upgrade). They thought the price increase would make them attractive to the high end clients - never happened, though, and they came crawling back to the initial Trinity owners..... most of whom had already left and gone on to other platforms. I guess the negative Trinity branding turned out to haunt them more than they hoped it would..... people aren't as stupid as they thought. I'm actually kind of surprised that they're still around.

I kind of guessed something was up with M100 when they lowered their prices dramatically...... no competent CEO would ever suggest that kind of reduction if the cash was flowing in regularly. If you look at their financial sheets (now posted), you can see that their cash flow decreased by 2/3rd's over the past 2 years. Not many companies could survive that.

Bottom line for the buyer is...... if it seems too good to be true - :eek:

videoguy
03-02-2004, 02:45 PM
well it looks like optibase inc will be purchasing the company for 2.5 million. which to me seems like a steal! to bad newtek couldnt raise that kinda cash just to hvae one less competitior and bring on some of there high end R and D guys

tmon
03-02-2004, 10:28 PM
http://www.uemedia.net/CPC/videography/article_6908.shtml

tmon
03-04-2004, 11:28 PM
With M100 faltering, if NewTek can nail down the remaining needed professional features such as EDL I/O, ROCK SOLID BC, reliable frame-accurate print to tape and RS422 control, selectable (proper) DF/29.97NDF in the timeline, low-res capture/high-res recapture, multichannel balanced audio I/O, etc., they could step in to the professional NLE void that now exists between AVID on the expensive end and the assorted DV options on the consumer/prosumer side of things.

Media 100 had this position for quite a while, but has lost a LOT of ground over the last two years or so.

Clearly, (on the NLE front, not on the live switch front, of course) the main competition is now FCP with the various uncompressed and HD cards that are on the market, but the price point of VT[3] is so much better, how can one not keep rooting for NewTek?

ScorpioProd
03-05-2004, 02:22 AM
Rooting for Newtek, of course, but is the price point "that" much better than a comparable FCP system? This is based on purely uncompressed editing and ignoring live switching.

Or is it only a "that" much better price point when you include things like LW?

Lightwolf
03-05-2004, 04:08 AM
Originally posted by ScorpioProd
Rooting for Newtek, of course, but is the price point "that" much better than a comparable FCP system? This is based on purely uncompressed editing and ignoring live switching.

Or is it only a "that" much better price point when you include things like LW?
Well, I'm currently searching for a new editing system, and while I actually own a VT2, it currently isn't one of the options I'm following... (not as a VT[3] either).
LW doesn't provide any extra incentive, I have and use it anyhow :)
Live switching is something I couldn't care less about. What I basically want and need is a fairly speed uncompressed digital (-> SDI) solution with a decent editor, optional HD (or at least a foreseeable path to HD), and digital audio i/o.
Taking CPU and drive proces as constant (you need roughly the same performance for any editing system), all that is left is the price of the actual solution.
The small media 100 system isn't that bad looking at it this way. A tad more expensive than the VT3, but mucho better for editing imho.
Currently, Mac/FCP based solution look good as well, especially since the actual video i/o hardware is quite cheap for macs, and works well with FCP.
Since I can assemble a HD system for roughly 15.000 Euros on a G5, I wonder if I want to invest roughly 10.000 on an SD system PC.
Then again, our old editing system (edit 6) is doing fine, so I don't have any pressure to switch.

But, to sum up, just for uncompressed editing, the VT[3] isn't an option imho. This seems to be mainly VTEdits fault (no HiQ rendered FX, no consolidate, a quirky timeline when it comes to finetuning edits). The hardware would need to be updated as well imho (SDI on the base board, AES/EBU audio).
Cheers,
Mike

Jim Capillo
03-05-2004, 06:14 AM
I wish you well, Mike, especially if you invest in Media100. That will be a HUGE crapshoot as you just as easily could end up with an orphaned system as not. I'd prefer to put my money with a diversified company (such as Newtek) that has several successful product lines to support it in the long term. If VT survives and is a reasonable seller, you can assume that the product development will continue (especially at Newtek's pace) and at some point will address all the issues you complain about and will surpass those capabilities.

Go to Digital Video Editing ERag (http://www.digitalvideoediting.com) and read the Charlie White interview with John Molinari. Reading between the lines, I personally got the feeling that this guy is in a panic and the company is in VERY serious trouble, even with the offer sheet (which is non-binding and preliminary, BTW). He mentions several times the huge cash infusion that Optibase will give them..... well, yes and no. I believe that Molinari is simply spouting a company line to calm the investors and keep the prospective buyers interested. If he can't do that, Optibase will be gone in a heartbeat. Also, I doubt if they're gonna plow endless cash into this product line if it doesn't sell, and sell immediately. I bet they give them (if they buy at all) 6 months to see HUGE product sales increases or they'll shut down the operation. There are probably more than a few folks who are standing on the sidelines with money to spend that are watching this situation and who are also not stupid...... it is my opinion that Media 100 is in a death spiral, and despite Molinari's propaganda, it will take a financial miracle for them to survive. That alone would take me off the prospective buyers list. Besides, if they do crash and burn, it's more likely I'll be able to pick up a complete editing system (albeit orphaned) for pennies on the dollar.

Again, I wish you good luck whatever you buy. Remember, no product is perfect - you simply need to buy what is best for your particular application.

Lightwolf
03-05-2004, 06:21 AM
Jim,
I agree with you. My point is, the VT[3] offers me nothing compared to my current, 4 year old system (well, nothing if I add up the features I'm missing). So I'm sticking to what I have.
Media 100 would have been a nice alternative, even though their HD upgrade path is a bit iffy to say the least.
It looks like the G5s are getting more and more attractive for low cost uncompressed SD/HS editing, so that may be the way to ge even though I'm not much of a Mac or FCP fan...
But, I was just trying to reply to ScorpioProd, and just as an editing system, the VT[3] doesn't fare too well imho.
Cheers,
Mike

ScorpioProd
03-05-2004, 12:32 PM
Thanks Mike, just looking to hear different views, cause I really don't see the price advantage as anywhere near as good as it was in the past.

And I must say I was surprised to read the article that talked about Mac based NLE sales being up 11% last year. (Though I'm not sure if that 11% was just a gain on its own or as part of a loss from PC based NLEs.)

tmon
03-08-2004, 12:15 PM
is the price point "that" much better than a comparable FCP system?

The biggest price differential, IMHO, comes from the cost of a G5 Dualie itself: Over $3700 just for the base hardware, including 2GB of RAM, 160GB system drive, dual-head ATI video card and DVD-R/CD-RW drive.

This is in addition to the $1200-4000 for an uncompressed SD (RGB) or HD capture card.

I guess for an uncompressed SD system, the differential would be what, around $1000-1500? That could buy most of my SCSI RAID.

dwburman
03-08-2004, 02:01 PM
Actually Decklink (http://decklink.com/) has 10 bit cards starting at just under $700.

The hard drive situation on the Mac is a bit different in that you'll have to add a SCSI or FibreChannel card and an external array (unless they can do uncompressed video on a SATA drive or two). The G5s do come with Firewire 800 but I don't know if that's a solution or not.



Originally posted by taiji
This is in addition to the $1200-4000 for an uncompressed SD (RGB) or HD capture card.

I guess for an uncompressed SD system, the differential would be what, around $1000-1500? That could buy most of my SCSI RAID.

tmon
03-08-2004, 03:27 PM
I hear the Decklink cards do not offer Genlock.

Lightwolf
03-09-2004, 02:55 AM
Originally posted by taiji
I hear the Decklink cards do not offer Genlock.
They do support genlock (no pass through though), as well as 8 channels of SDI audio, 4 SPDIF, they have RS 422 on board, are 10 bit and generally a steal.
Any compareable board costs at least US$4000. Unfortunately PC support for them is a bit iffy (as far as editing is concerned), but the low price of the board surely makes up for the pain of having to buy a G5 and an decent raid.
Cheers,
Mike

Correction: Their current beta driver support PremierePro, so we have PC based editing there too.

Darttman
03-09-2004, 05:10 AM
HI guys,

I am glad I read this forum now and then. I work with a small company and we use a media 100 on a g4 which I helped update last year to give us some digital input. We have been thinking of getting out of media 100 all together and going all mac... hmm decisions decisions.
I do all the flying logos with LightWave. Also I have fun with the highly skilled art of logging and archiving!

eon5
03-10-2004, 12:29 PM
Originally posted by Lightwolf
Their current beta driver support PremierePro, so we have PC based editing there too.

Have you one Decklink working in WindowsXP ?

We need a HDTV NLE_PC based, and like to read reviews and usersreviews about it... have you any references ?


http://www.decklink.com/site/pics/H_DeckLinkhd.gif

DeckLink HD features:

True multi-standard, switchable between SD NTSC or PAL and HD, 108i, 1080p and 720p.

Fully Digital 10 bit SDI input and output with embedded SDI audio. Switchable between SMPTE-259M SDI and SMPTE-292M HD.

Lightwolf
03-10-2004, 12:33 PM
eon5:
I don't and I don't ;)
I just like to keep up to date in case I need new hardware _now_.
Send me a PM if you want to discuss this further, I thik we're seriously drifting OT here :)
Cheers,
Mike

djlithium
04-02-2004, 03:18 PM
I have spoken with the people at Decklink about their HD cards.
I wouldn't go that direction.

Mac or PC based. They are depending on the machine being the work horse completely including any of the MJPEG compression to store the material.

Sure you can record uncompressed HD. But will you be able to work with it in any program that is not going to burn your storage remaining once you do that without a render out to HD again. People seem to forget this part.

A HDTV capture unit with MJPEG2000 hardware codec on board is the real solution to getting serious quality with any amount of flexibility in your storage options, not to mention it would work on an off the shelf system. No dual CPU's needed.

Fast bus, decent drives and some ram, plus a big freaking monitor.

bradl
04-02-2004, 05:53 PM
DJ, I know you work with Film and HD guys often so your advice is important to me. I don't follow some of your comments above.

Let me preface my questions with this:

We are in the final stages of deciding on which capture card to buy for our 3 G5 FCP workstations we are ordering right after NAB. For now, we work in SD 601 SDI almost exclusivly (except some BetaSP for duplication and distribution). Our cameras are Ikegami HD, but running in SD for now. Figure we may go HD in 1 to 2 years if the market (broadcast) continues it's adoption of it. We originally liked the Cinewave, then considered the AJA for it's connectivity but so many users like the Black Magic products including the Decklinks. It really comes down to the Drivers and Codecs written for the card and AFAIC they have some of the best. Now for the questions.
Originally posted by djlithium
I have spoken with the people at Decklink about their HD cards.
I wouldn't go that direction.Are you referring to a certain Decklink with a specific App or combination of hardware/application?
Mac or PC based. They are depending on the machine being the work horse completely including any of the MJPEG compression to store the material.As is the case with FCP/G5 right? And if you machine can handle it why is this bad?
Sure you can record uncompressed HD. But will you be able to work with it in any program that is not going to burn your storage remaining once you do that without a render out to HD again. People seem to forget this part.I would think the normal route is to work in offline resolution, digitize only what you need in HD, render any transitions or effects and get the Timeline to play it back to server or tape. Are you suggesting you will have to render the entire timeline to a file? or that with compressed HD these storage and playback issues are moot?
A HDTV capture unit with MJPEG2000 hardware codec on board is the real solution to getting serious quality with any amount of flexibility in your storage options, not to mention it would work on an off the shelf system. No dual CPU's needed.Could you give a link to some examples? Are these external boxes or card sets?


Fast bus, decent drives and some ram, plus a big freaking monitor. I love big freaking monitors (Apple is about to release the new G5 style Cinema Displays at 30"!!!) but not sure what monitor you are referring to? some kind of turnkey or black box system?

Sorry if I am a little thick on some of this as I have only been neck deep in VT, AVID and FCP tech info lately.

djlithium
04-02-2004, 06:50 PM
Ok.
Here it is guys.
For the past 4 years I have been doing my best to try and convince people that recording HD uncompressed is freaking stupid!

Texas Instruments has a full blown chipset available that can go onto a video capture card and do MJ2K compression on the fly at resolutions as high as Academy Film at 60fps.

Now, considering the digital cinema guys at THX were cool with 20:1 HDTV resolution for any of their work through the entire pipe line using MJPEG2000 why in the world would anyone want to blow their brains out and their budgets with systems that need X horsepower to get done what can be done on a single CPU box with one of these Ti equipped cards.
Last time I checked Ti had development boards for 2500 bucks that did component SD at D1 and D2. Now, sure these are development boards, but while everyone one is chasing the pot at the end of the rainbow there is a big pile of gold sitting a few feet back but everyone seems to have passed that mark not realizing what they missed.

Oh yeah, screw 10 bit. How about 16bit in JPEG2K in RGB or YUYV??

That's JPEG2000 native depth and color space.


Sure you still have to have a fast system to do all the neat tricks people want to do with it, but take the load off the drives and put more money in CPU or software and with compressed HD things will evolve a hell of a lot faster than working towards uncompressed land. Besides, at any time on these systems you can by pass the compression and record the material direct. How would that be bad?

Compressed now, uncompressed later.

The reason why I said don't bother with the BM cards is simply this. Compressed HD is the real stepping stone. I am sure we will see cards this year at NAB that are doing this stuff on the fly for the same price and if not all is lost once again (like it was a few years back when people thought DV looked good - and started to shoot productions on it) and the whole planet will have missed the boat.

For the money you drop on the decklink (yeah they are cheap and good, but no real driver support and the support on mac's for anything out of FCP is sketchy at best), the drives, the systems, you may want to wait just a few weeks until after NAB and see what has come out for compressed HD capture systems that do the work on the cards in wavelet form (not MPEG2!)

As for big freaking monitors I am happy with my LG22" for now, because I can still get it through doors attached to my M.O.J.O. cart. :)

jamesl
04-03-2004, 12:47 AM
Funny... all this talk on a Newtek sponsored Toaster forum? Boy if they weren't convinced that they needed a HD solution by NAB this year, I don't know what they're smoking.

I may be wrong, but seeing veteran Newtek people talking about spending much $$$ on FCP workstations looks very much like writing on the wall to me!

cheers,

j :eek:

djlithium
04-03-2004, 02:52 AM
I wouldn't count out newtek in any way for an HD solution. While they have been tight lipped on the whole HD thang, (trust me I have tried to get information out just about everyone there :) ) I am sure they have something neat cooking in some green alien oozze in the back room somewhere.
:)

Matt Drabick
04-03-2004, 04:40 PM
In a word . . . NAB

Jim Capillo
04-03-2004, 09:21 PM
Originally posted by djlithium
While they have been tight lipped on the whole HD thang, (trust me I have tried to get information out just about everyone there :) :)

Loose lips sink aircraft carriers........ ;) :D

Matt Drabick
04-04-2004, 08:58 AM
That's what happened to the Imperial Japanese Navy at Midway in 1942!

NAB . . . expect a lot of interesting products from various vendors. But then there always is, right?

Matt Drabick

ScorpioProd
04-05-2004, 12:07 AM
I'm sure that HD is in Newtek's future, but not this NAB.

Paul Lara has posted in a public forum that there is no HD from Newtek at NAB this year.

Personally, I saw a demo of Premiere Pro running on a laptop with Aspect HD, which is a wavelet compressed intermediate format, and it allows real-time effects and transitions in this configuration.

It was honestly very impressive. This is with HDV source video.

cholo
04-13-2004, 04:48 PM
Well, personally I have FCP here at work, 2 licenses to be exact, and DPS Velocity, a toaster, an ancient speed razor/perception combo, Vegas, you name it. Personally I like editing on the toaster better. Not only because it's the fastest setup we have (I can probably manage to do in Ted things about 1.5 times as fast as FCP on a dual G5 2 Ghz (Ted running on a dual 2.4 Xeon), especially when things get heavy on effects and then maybe about twice as fast), but it is much more intuitive for editing. I really like a lot of things about FCP, but there are no perfect systems out there and considering each system's limitations Ted is my cup of tea. And mind you I'm still on T2. For example, effects quality was brought up. When it comes down to quality precision effects work I always end up in Adobe AE, and Toaster's realtime preview is crucial for this. But for motion titles, nothing beats livetype so score one for FCP. Also you can take FCP with you on a laptop so thats another point for FCP, but (and a big but at that) this is of course out of the quastion if you want uncompressed 601. In the end all systems have their pros and cons. Just don't go around telling people Ted falls short delivering when it comes to editing power because it does not!

:)

eon5
04-14-2004, 07:34 AM
Originally posted by ScorpioProd
Paul Lara has posted in a public forum that there is no HD from Newtek at NAB this year.


link to this forum, please ?

ScorpioProd
04-14-2004, 02:15 PM
It's in the Creative COW forum for the VT.

All he said was "Nope." to the question of "Any HD for the VT" at NAB.

Seems like a simple, concise answer to me.

I'm sure Newtek will have lots of new stuff, I'm just saying don't be counting on HD from them at NAB.

http://www.creativecow.net/index.php?forumid=123

ted
04-14-2004, 11:25 PM
Cholo, well said. Especially since you've worked with most other systems.
As you said,depending on what you do daily, every system will have strong points.
For me, (I live mostly in TED daily), VT3 is the ticket. It's like "Butta" on Toast!:p