Welcome to Reviews OnLine: DV Expo 2001
DV Expo 2001
Product Finds
(December 17, 2001)


DV Expo was held on December 4-6, 2001 at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, California. It is in its its fifth year and is exclusively focused on all phases of the video production process. More than 80 conference sessions and tutorials were taught by independent industry experts covering practical solutions in digital video, 3D and Web video.

The expo hall hosted over 100 exhibitors and showcased some of the latest digital video tools and technologies. Some of these were:

P+S Technik

Matrox RT2500
The Matrox RT2500 hardware and software package is a real-time editing platform that includes the tools to:

  • Capture analog and digital video

  • Edit projects in real time

  • Create broadcast-quality titles

  • Perform 3D effects

  • Transfer to tape, DVD, CD or web files

    To accomplish this, Matrox has included the following software:

  • Adobe Premiere 6.0 for real-time editing

  • Inscriber TitleExpress for professional titling

  • Matrox MediaTools for automated single-pass DV scan and capture

  • Ligos LSX-MPEG LE for accelerated MPEG-1, VCD, and SVCD output

  • Sonic Foundry ACID Music for music track production audio editing

  • Sonic Solutions DVDit! LE for DVD authoring

  • Pixélan Video SpiceRack Lite for real-time organic transitions

  • Ligos LSX MPEG LE for accelerated MPEG-1, VCD, and SVCD output

  • Matrox Flex 3D for broadcast-quality effects

    Matrox RT2500 hardware is a single PCI-bus video editing card that works with the video display card in your computer system. It supports true three-layer real-time editing -- two native-DV or MPEG-2 video streams and a 32-bit uncompressed graphics layer, simultaneously, in real time. A number of different effects are supported, such as:

  • Particlization

  • 3D tiling

  • Distortions

  • 2D effects

  • Colorization

  • Transparency effects

  • Keyframeable 3D digital video effects

    Many of these effects can be added, in real time, with no rendering.

    Matrox RT2500 supports all the important input/output connections and formats needed in an editing system. Capture from analog or DV tape is supported, as well as output to tape, DVD, CD, and the web. The RT2500 performs native DV, DVCAM, DVCPRO and MPEG-2 editing. English, French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish are the supported languages.

    Because video is an application that loves high performance systems, the RT2500 supports both the Pentium 4 and dual-processor systems to perform ultra-fast DV exports. Windows 2000 and Windows Me are the supported operating systems.

    The Matrox RT2500 package is currently available and costs about $1000. 


    P+S Technik Mini 35 Digital Adapter
    Independent videographers can now affordably shoot their videos that have the same look of 35mm film. By using the P+S Technik Mini 35 Digital Adapter you can now attach high quality 35mm lenses on your digital videocam.

    This revolutionary lens adapter gives you close to the artistic quality of 35mm, at a fraction of the cost. The costs of raw 35mm stock, additional lighting and postproduction expenses are completely eliminated. Simply shoot, edit digitally and then transfer your digital movie onto film. In fact, you can create visual effects in video that could only be obtained in film, but you still have the ability to immediately review your footage on your monitor.

    The P+S Technik Mini 35 Digital Adapter works by creating a 35mm image on a ground glass plate located at the film plane of the lens. This image is then projected by a second lens to the camera's CCD. Because the P+S Adapter does not directly project the image from the 35mm lens onto the CCD in one step, you obtain the same depth of field, focal length and angle of view as a conventional 35mm film camera. The Technik Mini 35 has its own iris, so you can control the amount of light without affecting the depth of field controlled by the film lens. This provides creative freedom that doesn't exist in any standard film or video camera setup.

    Other features of the P+S Technik Mini 35 Digital Adapter are:

  • Retails for $7,325

  • Weighs about three pounds (1500 g)

  • Can be used "handheld"

  • Aluminum housing

  • Manufactured in Germany

    While the P+S Technik Mini 35 Digital Adapter is optimized for the Canon XL 1 (and the new XL-1S), it can be used with other DV cameras such as the Sony PD 150, Sony VX1000 or Sony VX2000. Individually priced lens mounts are available for Arri PL, Nikon, Leica, Zeiss Contax and Panavision.

    In addition to creative "filmmaking", the P+S Technik Mini 35 Digital Adapter can be used for:

  • video to film transfer

  • TV spots

  • episodic television

  • documentaries

  • Internet media

  • video-based presentations

    Because the three-dimensional quality of 35mm film is now created on DV tape, it is a useful tool for learning 35mm framing, lighting and depth of field control. The P+S Technik Mini 35 Digital Adapter is now available for rent, demo and sale. 


    Ulead MediaStudio Pro 6.5
    MediaStudio Pro 6.5 is Ulead's latest version of non-linear video editing software. It includes many new features such as DVD authoring, variable bit-rate MPEG-2 encoding, limitless digital video capture and digital video scene detection. Improvements over previous MediaStudio versions include Instant Preview Playback, Storyboard and Automatic A/B Roll Layout. It also provides native MPEG-2 editing and supports IEEE 1394.

    Five Easy Pieces

    MediaStudio Pro 6.5 consists of five key components:

  • Video Capture

  • Video Editor

  • Video Paint (rotoscoping)

  • CG Infinity (titling)

  • Audio Editor (voice and music)

    MediaStudio Pro 6.5 uses optimized coding that takes full advantage of the special features of the Intel Pentium III, Pentium 4 and the AMD 3dnow! processors.

    DVD authoring

    MediaStudio Pro 6.5 gives you ability to output video to VCD, SVCD and DVD. By using a simple 5-step wizard-based workflow, you can easily create VCD, SVCD and DVD titles with scene menus, navigation buttons and video introductions. You can then directly burn CD-R, CD-RW or DVD-R disks with the appropriate hardware. Your titles can then be played

    back on PC-based or stand-alone DVD players. A project database is also included to store your projects for future editing.

    Variable Bit-Rate MPEG-2 encoding

    Depending on the amount of information needed to display the image being presented, Variable Bit-Rate (VBR) MPEG-2 encoding changes the the bit rate. This results in improved picture quality as well as smaller file size than constant rate encoding. MediaStudio Pro 6.5 now supports variable bit rate (VBR) encoding in both raw MPEG-2 files as well as SVCD and DVD format templates.

    Limitless Digital Video capture

    Many of the supported Windows operating system have 4 gigabyte drive and file limits. While this doesn't impact wordprocessing or spreadsheet usage, this can affected long digital video projects. MediaStudio Pro 6.5 now allows you to capture a continuous DV video stream beyond 4 GB in size by creating multiple files that the software logically "stitches" together as a single unit.

    Digital Video Scene Detection

    After capturing your digital video onto your local drive, the drudgery begins. You now have to separate each clip and search for the heads and tails of each one before you can start editing. MediaStudio Pro 6.5 now makes clip preparation a much easier and more automated process by automatically separating the captured video into scenes.

    Instant Preview Playback

    With the Instant Playback feature of MediaStudio Pro 6.5 you can now preview your project in real-time, without wasting time rendering "preview files". Now you can immediately see your editing results and decrease your waiting time while creating video projects.

    Storyboard and Automatic A/B Roll Layout

    Since scenes are shot out of sequence, reassembling them properly can be a major drag. Within the Production Library of MediaStudio Pro 6.5 you arrange your clips before having to sequencing them on the timeline.

    Using a storyboard layout metaphor, you arrange thumbnails in the desired sequence (and even overlap them) to create a quick foundation which you can then drop onto the timeline, for transition work and specific editing. Since you can quickly rearrange clips (and weed out the duplicates faster), you can rapidly create your timeline.

    Pricing and Requirements

    The estimated street price for MediaStudio Pro 6.5 is $495. If your on a tight budget, the MediaStudio 6.5 Director's Cut (subset of the MediaStudio Pro 6.5 suite) will also be available for under $200. All versions require an Intel MMX Pentium processor with 64 megabytes of RAM and run on Microsoft Windows 98, 98 SE, NT 4.0 (SP6), ME, 2000 or XP. DV support requires Windows 98 SE, 2000 or XP.

    At least 300MB of hard disk space is needed, but realize that digital video can fill gigabytes of available hard drive space in mere hours of capture. I would recommend at least 20 gigabytes of free space or you will constantly having to offloading your large files onto a removable media drive, Philips CD-R drive or a LaCie, Panasonic, Pioneer or Vivastar DVD recordable drive. 


    The next DV Expo will be during June 25-26, 2002. It will be held in conjunction with TechXNY and PC Expo at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City. This will be the first DV Expo on the east coast.

    Want to see all this page in a more compact form? View the linked version of this article. It's a smaller download than this page, and each product's information is only a link away.

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