If you’re serious about editing, AVID is still the first choice for many projects. Of course, other NLEs like Premiere Pro, DaVinci Resolve, or Final Cut Pro offer a lot of diversity here, but AVID Mediacomposer is still the heavyweight among NLEs (and the one with the most years under its belt). The new 2021.3 update offers a bunch of useful updates, so let’s check it out!
The biggest update for this version is the new and improved (as in completely rewritten from scratch) IMF packaging tool within Avid Media Composer. IMF stands for Interoperable Master Format and is used to simplify the playout of different versions of a project, particularly for so-called OTT services (Over The Top, a media service offered directly to viewers over the Internet, such as Netflix or Amazon Prime Video), and to streamline the somewhat tedious process.
As AVID puts it:
You can link to or create IMF originals and then generate a supplemental package either inside or outside of the original without the need to re-encode existing media. You can even burn multiple CPLs under one IMP. (That’s a lot of acronyms, but suffice to say, if you’re in the business of delivering this industry standard to popular studios and OTT services, then you’ll definitely want to check this out.)AVID Mediacomposer 2021.3 press release
In addition to this key feature for larger productions, the new 2021.3 update offers a host of additions and new features that are also of interest to indie filmmakers.
Avid Media Composer 2021.3
For starters, here’s an overview video with all new and improved features:
The new Bin Status Bar is a nice touch for organizing all your assests. Get information about the total number of items, multi-select, or getinformation about the entire bin. The status bar can be toggled for each bin individually.
Next up, Mediacompser now offers new ways of customize your workspace. With two new highlight colors (that adjust with the interface brightness settings, just like the existing highlights), and a new mid-gray skin (slightly darker than the current lightest option), you now have more choices when working long hours in the editing suite.
Although the Titler+ is not exactly new to Media Composer, AVID seems to have revamped it quite a bit. More functions and features are now available directly in the composer window without having to open the Effects Editor. Rotating text and shapes using handles can now be done within the composer window. Also, text now wraps automatically within a defined text frame, and opacity can be applied to gradients in the color picker.
“Find Bin” from timeline
The Find Bin command can now be invoked directly in the Timeline when you point to a segment (no selection is required); simply right-click the desired segment and choose Find Bin to highlight the clip in a bin. The bin will open when closed, come to the front, and the appropriate clip will be selected. According to AVID, this feature has been on many users’ wish lists for some time, and since Mediacomposer is known for its speed (if you work a lot with shortcuts), this feature potentially streamlines workflows even more.
Lastly, Media Composer 2021.3 enables you to move segments vertically or horizontally in the timeline, without overwriting existing segments in the process. Nothing’s overwritten until you commit to the change.
So all in all, these new features aren’t necessarily earth-shattering, but it’s still nice to see that AVID seems to be listening closely to the needs of its customers and carefully implementing new features and improvements without disrupting proven workflows.
What do you think? Are you an AVID user or are other NLEs more to your liking? Share your experiences below in the comments!