A different approach to NLE workflows

Today I met with Boris Yamnitsky, the founder of Boris FX. You know you are the ultimate video geek when you Google “Boris Y” to check the spelling of his last name and you’re surprised Boris Yeltsin pops up first.

Boris FXAnyway, Boris had a very interesting take on my take on Avid’s predicament. He doesn’t understand my fixation with need for software suites. In his view, properly implemented plug-in strategies meet the user’s needs more cost effectively. You might expect something like that from someone who made his name in the plug-in space, but he brings up a significant point.

Added May 20, 2007: Boris FX whitepaper on RED in Final Cut Pro. It makes a surprisingly strong case for RED over Motion.

The major NLEs are all pretty feature-laden, and there’s a lot of video work being done that doesn’t require a lot of back forth between NLE, compositor, compressor, and DVD authoring tool. Also, many of those ancillary tasks still require a specialist and are done at different workstations.

Yet anyone who has edited professionally over the past decade has also seen that the editor’s job is expanding gradually. Rostrum work, basic color grading, and motion graphics are now part of the editor’s job description. This is where Boris sees opportunity. Editors want to work in NLEs, so Boris brings the tools to the NLE.

Our views are not as diametrically opposed as they might appear at first blush. The NLE decision today is purely workflow-based. For example, an XDCAM production is best served by Avid, Varicam by Final Cut Pro, and a video-driven Flash site by Premiere Pro. Many editors must be comfortable on multiple platforms, and those editors aren’t going to want to learn multiple compositing, DVD authoring, and motion graphics applications. So there will always be a place for well-integrated tools that work across a variety of platforms.

Who’d have thought?

Ten or so years ago the Boris FX booth at NAB was a few feet square, and Media 100 had a huge presence. Now Boris owns Media 100.

PromaxTen or so years ago Promax had virtually no presence at NAB and SGI was a must-see, this year the Promax booth was the same size as SGI’s and its foot traffic looked to be a factor of ten greater than SGI’s.

What small vendor do you think will be a major player in 10 years? Silicon Imaging? Red Giant (not to be confused with giant RED)? Something to ponder during renders.

One Thought on “A different approach to NLE workflows

  1. I would prefer to have all the tools available to me in the edit timeline. I don’t work in just one mode at a time. That is so 1900s.

    These days you can be color correcting and decide to change an effect based on what is happening after you change the color. Why should I have to stop, enter another application, change the effect, and then re-enter my editing app?

    That siad, I wouldn’t want to be authoring a DVD in an edit application. So there are places for seperate apps, but the basic editing and polishing should all be in one app.

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