Latest post Wed, Oct 7 2020 6:12 AM by camoscato. 22 replies.
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  • Thu, Sep 17 2020 8:05 PM

    Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    Currently we're still on 2018.12.8 and it is working fine.  Over the past few years I've been following along with the various threads of complaints about the newer versions from UI niggles to what seems to be the biggest issue - the new title tool.

    My overall impression has been a little bit negative to be honest.  Most of the point releases seem to be full of bug fixes and not much else and I've not really seen any glowing reviews.

    We may be forced to move to the newer versions due to new Mac hardware being purchased, therefore restricting us to Catalina.  

    What are people's general opinions of the newer versions? Other than a different interface and title tool, does it mostly work the same as 2018? In other words, do people think there will be a big learning curve to get up to speed having come from 2018. I ask because the editors will be expected to just crack on and we don't really have time to get caught up with bug hunting and troubleshooting. Is the title tool a deal breaker for people or no more than a minor inconvenience? And what about quicktime and format support? Is that causing people issues? The show I work on uses a lot of GoPro, DSLR and minicam type footage so lots of MP4 etc. Will this be an issue?

    What I don't want to happen is the production spends many thousands on new kit and then finds that the edit can't use Avid properly.  

    One final question, a lot of the post houses I know are also still running 2018; will there be issues providing them with bins and sequences from 2020 versions?

    Thanks for any thoughts,

    Andi

    HP ZBook G6 15 2.6Ghz 6-core i7 9th Gen Nvidia Quadro T2000 4GB 64GB RAM Win 10 Pro MC Ultimate 2018.12.11 MacbookPro 15 2019 6 core 2.6GHz i9... [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Sep 17 2020 9:46 PM In reply to

    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    Hi Andi,

    I didn't find the UI update from 2018/2019 to 2020 to be that big of a hurdle. If you're already used to working with workspaces, it's a piece of cake. If you don't currently use workspaces in 2018/2019, then the update to 2020 might be somewhat harder because that's how it 'wants' you to work. 

    The main changes in Catalina have to do with the elimination of 32-bit apps, meaning Quicktime. There are a lot of things in the linking, importing and exporting workflows that require workarounds, or just don't work yet, and if the complaints on here and on Facebook groups are any indication, it's this that is the major stumbling block.

    I hope that helps.

    Carl

    Media Composer 2020.9 w/Symphony/SS/PF options, HP Z-Book G6 17", i7-9850H 2.60GHz, 32gb RAM, NVIDIA Quadro RTX 3000, Windows 10 Pro [view my complete system specs]

    "There is hardly anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who only consider the price are this man's lawful prey."  - John Ruskin (1819-1900)

     

    Carl Amoscato | Freelance Film & Video Editor | London, UK

  • Fri, Sep 18 2020 11:25 AM In reply to

    • danny
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    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    You shouldn't have any difficuly getting your head around the way the new bin options and docking / flaoting options (plus they are largely able to over-ridden if you prefer the old way of bin dislpay). The various general, projet and user settings are all in different places now and don't seem to offer any advantage to me, but at least the project window is now restored as a solid thing (it had recently disappeared into the various bin options). But overall the interface is just not as satisfying to work with, with limited colours, grey tools on grey background and obliterating the desktop. I find it just makes it harder to read and navigate around the (two) monitors.

    I'm frustrated with the bugs in 2020 on mac (but maybe PC too...). The UME linking is somewhat erratic in its linking re audio channels coming in as stereo linked tracks and the way it varies between whether the media is mp4 or, say ProRes. I was getting stereo mp4s linking as stereo but only playing track 1 out to both channels. These bugs have been reported and can be worked around, but are too erratic to trust at the moment, in my opinion.

    There is a bug with audio only (Avid Media mxf imported, not linked) in the source window: you can no longer "rock and roll" (ie go from forwards to reverse) without going through stop. This is very frustrating when trying to edit music, but also any audio only material.

    The new title tool is a huge deal breaker for me, since I need to work on legacy projects with captions made in the old title tool. I know on Mojave one can still still access the old title tool (with a download package). This will not be the case with Catalina, so it makes buying new mac hardware impossible for me to consider. If Avid could supply a backwards compatible "old title tool" plugin that worked on Catalina...

    I find exporting to be confusing. Same as Source used to be my link and export workflow. Now I'm lost as to which method works without affecting the original codec. Some op1a exports report as being one audio track, yet appear to have two in reality. There's a really useful peice of freeware (worth contributing to) called Shutter Encoder, which has helped me get around a lot of importing and exporting issues - but which one feels ought not to have to rely on to simply get on with basic editing these days. I can't comment on exporting 2020 projects to earlier versions that, as you say, post houses maybe using.

    That's not to say there are no improvements - a general performance lift with mp4 / XAVC is noticeable. Zooming in and out of the timeline whilst playing is great. Colour grading in Symphony is more efficient with improved masking and real-time scopes. Getting away from Quicktime dependency and the ability to use ProRes on PC are good things.

    What is annoying for me is paying every year for maintenance, but can't yet take advantge of any developments for fear of too many bugs. It feels like two steps forward, one step back. I want to keep up and I live in hope all these issues will get better, but for now I'm still tending to use 8.9.1 (on my other partition) for serious long-form projects. I'm also not planning investing in new mac (Catalina) hardware, and hesitant to pay for upgrading my current Boris FX 10 for now. Of course it's possible none of these issues will affect your workflow.

    Mac 3Ghz 8-core cylinder Xeon E5. 32GB 1866Mhz DDR3. AMD D700 graphics x2. OS 10.12.6 with MC/Symphony 8.9.1 and 10.14.6 with MC2020 [view my complete system specs]
  • Fri, Sep 18 2020 5:57 PM In reply to

    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    I've been extremely frustrated by the 2020.x series.   I joined a project already heavily underway with other editors, all on 2018.x, and to do so thought the best option would be to get 2020.8.  The problems were simple, and very painful:

    - Title Tool is gone, and the only titler you can use is Titler+, which is to my mind unusbale.  THe main problem with this is that I was unable to edit the other editors titles, so had to replace them with Titler+ titles.  They, of course, had never used Titler+, so they were unable to work with mine.  Result?  Total roadblock.

    - Titler+ is terrible.  Just awful.

    - You cannot import many formats that are completely nortmal these days - mp4, m4a, HEIC.

    - You cannot export to any kind of compressed 'postable' format, such as mp4.   You can export to MOV, but the audio is uncompressed, so the file size is huge.   Your only option is double transcoding.

    These four issues alone prevented me from contintuing to work on 2020.x, and I downgraded to 2019.x, which is basically fine.

    However, I had bought a new maxed-out MBP for this project and intended to trade in my existing MBP.  Because you can't downgrade from Catalina, and you can only run 2020.x on Catalina, I was unable to use my new MBP and had to hold onto my old MBP to work on Avid 2019.x - meaning there was a financial cost to this too.

    I'm furious that Avid hadn't foreseen these issues - everyone knew 32-bit apps were going away for the last three years.   Premiere is astonishingly fast on my new MBP - mp4 exports are literallly five times faster than my older MBP.

    MBP 2015, 2.5Ghz 4 Core, 16GB RAM, 2GB VRAM. MBP 2020, 2.5Ghz 8 Core, 64GB RAM, 8GB VRAM [view my complete system specs]
  • Sat, Sep 19 2020 3:15 PM In reply to

    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    This is all pretty disheartening. I'm not seeing much to recommend it other than some general performance improvements which are not causing me issues on 2018.12.8 anyway. Does anyone really like it? Are there any people who feel it is a positive improvement over 2018?

    The thing that annoys me most is that I have been paying yearly subscription fees for the last two years for basically nothing.  And as far as I know if I stop paying these, then when Avid does finally release something I want to use, I will then have to pay a much higher price for it to start up again? Renewal comes around again soon and I really think I'm not going to bother.

    I've recommended to our production they they hold off on buying new kit for now and that we continue hiring older Macbooks running Mojave in order for us to keep working on 2018.  I'm not about to rock the boat right before a new series, especially one that uses the title tool plenty and has 10+ series going back years that we often dip in to. And this actually really annoys me too as I really want to use those new machines to test out other products, many of which are Catalina only.

    I get that Catalina threw a big spanner in the works but progress over the last few years feels to have been painfully slow. It feels very "headless chicken" at the moment. 2018.12.8 is stable, reasonably fast and works right, I'm not going to risk that for audio bugs and title tool hell. 

    Please continue to add to this thread if you feel like it, I'd like to canvas the largest range of opinions.

    Cheers,

    Andi

     

    HP ZBook G6 15 2.6Ghz 6-core i7 9th Gen Nvidia Quadro T2000 4GB 64GB RAM Win 10 Pro MC Ultimate 2018.12.11 MacbookPro 15 2019 6 core 2.6GHz i9... [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Sep 29 2020 8:34 AM In reply to

    • dharia
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    • Joined on Fri, Sep 19 2008
    • Posts 190
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    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    Yeh for us we have a fast paced production studio operation feeding 100's of spots a day to air for regional sports networks. We have the 2010 mac pro's with 12 cores on Mojave. We went from 2018 to 2019 and kept the floating bins option on which makes it act like AVID has always been pre 2018, instead of the tabbed interface, it's actually kinda nice some of the speed gains and updates with file types and thingsbut it still basically feels like 2018 just slightly clunky in interface. So if you ever have to then go to 2019 on Mojave and you should be fine. 2020 no way, I mean the thing doesn't even support the Nitris DX and the UME and al that its too huge of a jump for most places like you don't even need it, the point of post production is to pump out great work and make money, so 2019 is nice update but not nuts. I bet 2020 though by a year from now will have that nice 2018 locked down solid feeling, I use Premiere now and then but still AVID's awesome, so I bet their 2020 version will get there. I remember Media Composer 3.5 in 2009 or so, it sucked compared to the Meridien AVID on OS9 but then by Media Composer 5 it was rocking and rolling in 2012.

    I'm actually an IT Major and a super techie guy but also a broadcast editor of national promos for 14 years so still a generation x'er in a way and still that 2018 you're on is the best bet, but 2019 could be alright if you ever have to go to that just stay on Mojave, even a 2019 Mac machine can run Mojave. Then you'll be fine, just might have to get your timeline colors and whatnot all setup again but as far as rock solid stability 2019 is like 2018 if you're on Mojave, might even be more stable and faster.

    Caveats you'll run into if you go to Catalina and 2020 coming from a broadcast promo guy:

    -If you linked any AMA quicktimes and didn't transcode them to MXF's or something, they're goign to fall offline with the UME in 2020, you'd have to relink them all.

    -Catalina doesn't run well wtih SMB network drives and printers, so many issues, maybe not for your editing but sharing documents and things on the edit bays it'll be annoying.

    -MC 2020 Titler+ , Title Tool on 2019 MC Mojave is amazing its so easy and fast, half the time all I need to do is slate stuff on black, Titler+ is too many steps for that.

    -Catalina might not run some 32bit plugins and things you're used to using, I use Magic Bullet Looks from like 5 years ago and it runs on 2019 MC, 2020 it might not.

    -Your shared storage server, does it support Catalina? Ours does but not all of them do 64 bit.

    -Do you ship any stuff outwards? Because the DNXHD format is different, so you'd have to convert your exports in Media Encoder (Adobe) to something compatible with other facilties that haven't updated yet.. Versus 2019 you just export as usual.

    -Basically we never like to ask our clients other places what they can and can't accept so 2019 lets us send them anything, cause we know it'll work with older things and newer things. AAF's, Quicktimes, Spots for Air, projects.

     

    Actually from a super techie standpoint if AVID stayed at MC 2019, but added in hardware acceleration for encoding and decoding as well as import/export like Premiere does (Media Encoder Metal conversions), that  AVID program would wreck the Premiere market, that'd be the ultimate AVID editing software. Hoping AVID gets there though! It's the only program I trust for a production environment, Premiere is still risky unless you're on some isolated system editing a film or something less team oriented.

  • Tue, Sep 29 2020 9:33 AM In reply to

    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    I like 2020.x, but I'm not that fussy about interface changes, and the current tools suit my workflow. [shrugs]

    Philip Owens:
    you can only run 2020.x on Catalina

    This is not accurate. On a Mac you can run 2020.8 on High Sierra (10.13.6), Mojave (10.14.6), or Catalina (10.15.6).

    https://avid.secure.force.com/pkb/articles/en_US/compatibility/en267087

    Media Composer 2020.9 w/Symphony/SS/PF options, HP Z-Book G6 17", i7-9850H 2.60GHz, 32gb RAM, NVIDIA Quadro RTX 3000, Windows 10 Pro [view my complete system specs]

    "There is hardly anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who only consider the price are this man's lawful prey."  - John Ruskin (1819-1900)

     

    Carl Amoscato | Freelance Film & Video Editor | London, UK

  • Tue, Sep 29 2020 11:15 AM In reply to

    • danny
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on Sun, Jan 24 2010
    • Posts 88
    • Points 985

    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    Yes, I can run 2020.8 on Mojave on a mac cylinder 2013, with the ability to still use the old title tool for now. But can't upgrade hardware, because it will be locked to Catalina and above, so will lose access to old titles in legacy projects, and be limited to making new titles in Titler+, which will be incompatible with other editors and most post houses. So for now I'm staying off 2020 for serious projects, whilst holding my breath for the many bug fixes needed, and a functioning title tool.

    Mac 3Ghz 8-core cylinder Xeon E5. 32GB 1866Mhz DDR3. AMD D700 graphics x2. OS 10.12.6 with MC/Symphony 8.9.1 and 10.14.6 with MC2020 [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Sep 29 2020 11:57 AM In reply to

    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    dharia:
    Because the DNXHD format is different, so you'd have to convert your exports in Media Encoder (Adobe) to something compatible with other facilties that haven't updated yet.. Versus 2019 you just export as usual.

    I was not aware of this? In what way is it different? As an MXF? or a .mov? or is it the actual codec regardless of container that has changed?

    We also use Magic Bullet quite a bit so that needs to work too.

    Honestly my subscription is just a black hole right now, I'm not going to upgrade because there are just too many reports of quirkiness and bugs and the post houses I deliver to are also still on 2018. I want to buy new mac hardware but won't be doing that either. The best I think I can manage will be to create a dual boot Mojave/Catalina machine on a maxxed out 2019 MBP 15.

    It's a sorry state really and I eagerly await the day that all this gets sorted, but I must say - it is taking far too long.

    Andi  

    HP ZBook G6 15 2.6Ghz 6-core i7 9th Gen Nvidia Quadro T2000 4GB 64GB RAM Win 10 Pro MC Ultimate 2018.12.11 MacbookPro 15 2019 6 core 2.6GHz i9... [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Sep 29 2020 6:22 PM In reply to

    • dharia
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    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    I think the actual codec has changed cause of the 64bit change. So people need the latest Codecs Pack to read the files if they don't have that latest codec (or 2020 MC installed). But that means if I want to ship to a traffic room at a network who takes DNXHD145 and I export from MC 2020, they won't be able to read it if they're setup as they've always been unless somehow they update their traffic/QC systems to accept, like Extreme Reach and other digital acceptance systems.

    https://community.avid.com/forums/p/199286/893090.aspx

  • Tue, Sep 29 2020 8:28 PM In reply to

    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    Gotcha, good to know, I missed this first time round.

    Andi

    HP ZBook G6 15 2.6Ghz 6-core i7 9th Gen Nvidia Quadro T2000 4GB 64GB RAM Win 10 Pro MC Ultimate 2018.12.11 MacbookPro 15 2019 6 core 2.6GHz i9... [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Sep 29 2020 10:31 PM In reply to

    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    Thanks for the correction.   I had meant to say the opposite - you can't run 201x on Catalina.

    MBP 2015, 2.5Ghz 4 Core, 16GB RAM, 2GB VRAM. MBP 2020, 2.5Ghz 8 Core, 64GB RAM, 8GB VRAM [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Oct 1 2020 12:33 PM In reply to

    • Ryan
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    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    You cannot import many formats that are completely nortmal these days - mp4, m4a, HEIC.

     

     

     

    What can be done to fix this ius there a codec pack to download?

    multiple mac editors and windows systems [view my complete system specs]
  • Thu, Oct 1 2020 2:15 PM In reply to

    • pierreh
    • Top 75 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Oct 13 2005
    • Paris, London
    • Posts 1,277
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    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    And there is a new version now, but it's very early to comment on its stability etc

    https://community.avid.com/forums/t/200235.aspx

    - Work: MacPro 2010 3.46Ghz 12 Cores 48Gig RAM, Mojo DX, 10.14.6 - Home: MacBookPro 2.5Ghz quad-i7, 16Gig Mem and SSD OSX 10.11.6 [view my complete system specs]
  • Tue, Oct 6 2020 7:41 PM In reply to

    • gigster
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    Re: Looking for opinions on 2020 version MC...

    Monday was my 1st time back on Avid in about 2 years or so. 

    Up until then I beta-tested every single version of Avid MC..way back from when it ran on an Apple IIci.

    Have to say NOT a fan at all new interface.  Horrible, essentially unmodifiable, options for the interface... either mid gray with no decent contrast of dark as night.  Sidebar grouping instead of tabbed... 

    (this stuff was creeping in last I beta-ed, but you were able to customize way more than now.)

    Limited importing, no QT support which is crucial as 99.9% of graphics come that way..with alphas! (though you get fooled when importing with options that used to work) and limited exports.

    Tools work as you'd expect generally so at least there's that. 

     

    Good luck!

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