MacDirectory Magazine

Summer-Fall 2008 (#38)

MacDirectory magazine is the premiere creative lifestyle magazine for Apple enthusiasts featuring interviews, in-depth tech reviews, Apple news, insights, latest Apple patents, apps, market analysis, entertainment and more.

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REVIEW | CREATIVITY 108 MacDirectory One of the most amazing aspects of the computer revolution is desktop-based video. What is equally amazing is that the kinds of effects that saturated every scene of films such as the Star Wars prequels were created with a stack of maxed-out personal computers and using tweaked off-the-shelf software. This is largely due to the efforts and imagination of such companies as Boris FX – the people who bring us such powerful effects, filters, transitions, and 3-D compositing tools as Red, Continuum, and Final Effects. Working with such applications as Media 100, Final Cut Pro, Motion, Avid, AfterEffects, and others, these tools translate the task of video editing from the mundane to the truly amazing. Frankly, if you have one Boris FX title, you want them all. This has recently been made both easy and more affordable with the introduction of the Boris Box Set. It is available at the reasonable price of $1,995 (60 percent below retail) and, if you are a current owner of Red, Blue, FEC, CC, or Media 100 producer, you can knock off an additional $400. This may seem a bit much for your average corporate creative department, but with these tools in hand, there is no question that you are playing with the big boys. There are two different box sets for Mac and for Windows. Titles in common are Red 4.2, BCC 5, FEC 5, and Title Toolkit. The Windows version also includes the 3- D motion graphics package Boris Blue (currently under development for the Mac). The Mac version extends BCC and FEC to support Apple as well, and it includes a copy of Artel Software's video editor, Media 100 Producer . These are truly powerful tools that provide everything from 3-D rotoscoping to motion tracking both objects and effects, from 3-D titling and chart generation to advanced keying, not to mention tons of filters and transition generators. While these tools come with hundreds of presents, the ability to tweak and to save custom presets is so great that one could spend months doing nothing more than experimenting. While most editors and effects folks start off with a non-linear editor such as Final Cut, Premiere or Avid, and then enhance their tool set, the Mac version of the Boris Box Set comes with Media 100 Producer 12.6; the software-only version of Artel's easy to use and highly intuitive video package. This is available in a Leopard compatible version, which includes such new features as HDV acquire, multi- channel audio acquire and remapping, and the ability to run of the same AJA video card driver as Final Cut Pro, and off the same boot disk. To check out a QuickTime overview, go to . Boris Continuum Complete is a first-class package of some 180 filters and transitions that vary from good to spectacular. Among its more notable features are tools for the seamless deletion of moving foreground objects, volumetric lighting, and the ability to map a parameter to a moving object, such as attaching light rays to a moving flashlight. Final Effects Complete provides such tools as particle system filters, procedural generators, advanced keying and matting, fur, glass, embossing and more, and in an easy-to-use fashion, with most filters featuring less than a dozen parameters to handle everything. Boris Red is the flagship product here. Serving as both a NLE plug-in and a stand- alone application, is most commonly seen in the animated 3-D logo sequences for professional sports broadcasts. (See MD, Spring 2007.) While the interface doesn't show the polish of AfterEffects or Motion, it is an amazing tool. In addition, it incorporates the complete Boris FX plug-in set and Boris Graffiti 2-D / 3-D title animation package. As with competing packages, the quality and usefulness of the components vary, but there are few dogs in this kennel. The main drawback is in the lack of hours in a workday to explore the huge range of awe-inspiring visuals that can be created with these tools. The Boris Box Set is the ideal means of translating the task of editing and effects creation from the mundane into the fantastic. While priced above the grasp of most amateurs and hobbyists, this package will go far in enhancing the bottom line of any corporate visual department or video house. Besides, these tools are just plain fun. BORIS BOX SET > WHEN YOU WANT IT ALL WORDS BY TREY YANCY Product Boris Box Set Made by BorisFX Price $1,995 ($1,595 upgrade from single title) Pros Supports a wide range of applications, great tool set Cons Red's dated interface, missing Boris Blue Rating HHHHH

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