What's in this issue:

March 2010 - Issue 11

Well, it is the beginning of spring, there are leaves on trees, the sun is in the sky (hopefully), and there is less and less of a need to wear that thick winter jacket! With the coming of the new season, The Merging team is happy to announce a bunch of cool new stuff, along with the release of some new versions of our software range for all of you to enjoy!

Pyramix 6.2 new features

This is a big release for us. With this version, we have attempted to further stabilize and improve much of the existing code. This is, we believe, the culmination of a software consolidation phase, which Merging decided to concentrate on since last summer, based on several users' feedback. Not only are we bringing some highly desired workflow improvements, which should allow many of our users to have a much more fluid experience while ensuring that your Pyramix system is as stable as possible. Have a look below to see some of major features and enhancements which we have included.

Shared Mixer mode

This new feature speeds up the process of working between multiple projects. In the File drop down menu you can now enable SHARED MIXER on any project. What this does is, when you open up a second project, it simply loads the EDL and plays it out through the “master” mixer from the other project! This is a great tool for compiling and copy/paste operations between projects, but it is also a very easy way to move between parts of a job without having to wait for mixer rebuilds etc.

  • Ability to create a new project which automatically shares the existing mixer
  • Open multiple EDL’s without waiting for mixer rebuilds
  • Instantly switch between many projects

New AAF Module

AAF has become one of the new industry standards when it comes to project EDL interchange. With vast improvements over the OMF format, it is opening up a range of new possibilities when dealing with a multitude of different systems in a workflow.

The AAF module has been completely re-written for this version release.

  • Importing and management of alternate takes
  • New import and export window with added functionality
  • Mute and clip gain information conserved to and from an AAF file when used with a Pyramix project

Automation snapshot improvements

Automation snapshots have always been an incredibly powerful way in which to add parameter changes to the mixer in a non-linear manner. Now we have added some radio buttons to the snapshot automation window which should vastly speed up the process of setting parameters to a range or to the cursor position.

  • Remember last used :
    Remembers the tick boxes which were used in the previous snapshot and applies the same selection to any amount of tracks selected.)
  • Remember last changed:
    Will automatically tick the boxes of any parameters which were automated in the last live pass.
  • Select Displayed:
    Auto-ticks the box of the displayed automation track

Physical I/O naming

MassCore has brought an unrivalled capability in I/O management to the audio industry. With up to 384 discreet inputs and outputs available now, being able to quickly see what path you are connecting a timeline track to is essential for a speedy setup.

Now, in the All Settings window, users are able to name all of the input and output paths so that when using any routing mechanism in the mixer, the name will show up. These names are saved with the application and are thus available in any project on that system.

New Jog features

Geared jogging:
  • This is a really great idea brought to us from some really good guys at a TV promo studio in Soho, London. In this mode, the jog ceiling becomes a variable based on the level of zoom which is currently set. For instance, if the user zooms into the waveform to a close-to-sample level zoom, the jog ceiling will cap out at a very slow speed, allowing very fine jog control. Likewise, if the user then zooms out to see a large part of the timeline, the jog ceiling increases to that of a fast wind or scan mode.
Jog Zoom:
  • Zooming in and out of the timeline is now available as a modifier function of the Jog Wheel. By using Jog-Zoom mode, you can enlarge or reduce the view of the timeline with ease. The zoom steps have been refined as well, giving the user interface to zooming with the Jog-Wheel a much more fluid feel.

Mixdown buss choices saved

This request has been on the table for ages and we felt it time that we finally just get it done. Now when doing multiple mix downs from a complex mixer with a variety of Buss outputs, the choice of busses is saved once chosen. Thus, the successive time that the user opens the mixdown page, the buss selection is already there, saving time and preventing possible mistakes.

VCube 2.2 new features

VCube 2.2 is another release that we are all very proud of here at Merging. We have added a new specialized and dedicated VCube developer over the past year and this new version is a testament to just how much work has been put into the code. Have a look below to see some of the great new ideas and features which have been implemented.

New MXF module

MXF is the newest and probably most important file type to come to the industry in years. Meant to now be a universal file type, holding all the metadata necessary for a media file whether it is a raw recording or a broadcast master, MXF is proving that it is geared to become the industry standard. So, Merging have developed an entirely new and updated MXF module for the VCube. Able to deal with all of the modern HD codecs in use in most territories, and with optimized parsing, this is a definite sales opportunity not to be missed.

Preset saving for record settings

Another highly requested item, which we have now had the time to achieve. When creating new files etc. now the settings which you are using can be saved and loaded very quickly and easily, allowing users to speed up the workflow, whilst lessening the possibility for human error when configuring a record pass.

New AAF module

This is the same module as was featured in the Pyramix 6.2 points. With an updated and vastly improved architecture, this module is compatible with all new versions of 3rd party software, allowing simple and fast imports from most video or audio edit systems.

GUI and Layout improvements

The guys at Merging have been working for a while now to increase the simplicity by which VCube is operated. To that end, this is the first instalment in a GUI revamp which will allow for simpler and more intuitive use of the entire system. All of the tab windows are now arranged in a manner which speeds up navigation and visual feedback of settings etc. Also, there have been improvements to things such as:

  • Floating window sizing (similar to what is possible with DS/QT movie player in Virtual Transport)
  • Settings tab window layout
  • Removing “collapsible folder” GUI and replaced with standard tabs
  • Settings can now display multiple windows at once

New AJA I/O SRC disable button for Dolby E signals

VCube 2.2 now allows for the SRC real-time conversion present by default on the AES input of the AJA Xena series video boards to be disabled from the user interface to allow for the audio signal bit-for-bit transparency necessary to digitize a Dolby E encoded signal.

Importing and mounting media/project improvements

For large scale workflows involving the need to mount and use media folders with huge amounts of data, parsing times have proven to be a serious bottlenecks in that process. Now, the VCube parsing operation has been vastly improved to allow for quick access to even the largest of media folders. .MOV/.MXF etc. are all now loading much, much faster.

Basic Jog Wheel editing

Isis control was brought to the VCube in Version 2. Now, due to popular demand, in version 2.2 we have extended that control to allow for basic jog-wheel editing of video and audio clips on the timeline. For the moment trim in and out points via the jog-wheel have been implemented. An edit pop-up dialog window, similar to the one found in Pyramix, (with an “accept or cancel” option for the specific edit) appears when you enter the new jog edit mode so anyone familiar with Jog wheel editing in our DAW will easily pick up on using the jog wheel in VCube.

New 9pin track arming feature

It is now possible to distinguish between the Mykerinos card inputs and those from the AJA card when using a 9pin controller to rec arm audio tracks on the VCube. A simple “Prefer Mykerinos Track for Assemble” radio button now exists in the record page for easy access to this feature.

Ovation 1.2 new features

We have been working tirelessly to ensure that every successive Ovation release becomes more and more stable so that you can feel confident about operating your units into the most demanding live environments. We are now eager to move forward adding more features which will hopefully make the Ovation even more popular than it started to be.

Industries where we are seeing a great response thus far:

  • Theatres and live stage show facilities.
  • Broadcast production playout (game shows, talk shows, newscasts)
  • HIFI market (for use as a DSD/DXD/high samplerate music player)
  • Corporate A/V shows (small scale shows requiring compact “all in one box” solutions)

And some of the features which are being very well received:

  • Microphone and input management from cues
  • The mixer and being able to assign VST’s to slots
  • MassCore power
  • The vast variety of control protocols implemented
  • The rules window and the logical way in which you can make very complex setups
  • The hot keys lists and use with touch screen TFT’s

Pierre Laporte joins the Merging Technologies team

New Global Sales Manager for the worldwide distribution network

We have a new sales manager! We are all very excited to welcome Pierre Laporte to the Merging Technologies team.

Pierre Laporte has come to us after many successful years of selling Merging Products in the French territories.

Originally, Pierre started his career with the now legendary Synclavier, as a demonstrator and salesman. From then until now, Pierre has had an incredibly prosperous life as a salesman, sales director and manager for a wide variety of audio systems integrators and manufacturers. Probably two of his most important achievements were during his time with Akai-Pro, introducing their Direct-to-Disk range of products (mainly DD1000 and DD1500) to the French territory, where he achieved sales figures of over 1200 units each. Then, more recently, being instrumental in introducing VCube to France with well over 50 units all networked to central storage, at one single facility, Dubbing Brothers in Paris.

"Delighted Pierre has joined our team, he’s been instrumental in turning into reality a number of very large projects over the past couple of years. I am confident his enthusiasm to achieve impressive sales numbers (ranging over the entire palette of Merging current product offerings from small Native or Ovation single user versions to large and complex systems including close to 100 VCube & Pyramix Networked) will unavoidably leak into your own sales organizations. More importantly even is that his experience will enhance our ability to provide better service to our clients.”

The Merging Team