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Avid Releases New 4Designer 1.3

The new 1.3 version of Avid’s 4Designer has enriched graphics and workflow improvements.

Avid’s new release of 4Designer 1.3 has an updated user interface, new features and several workflow improvements. But according to what Martin Appleton, Avid’s sr principal product manager for graphic design and technology, told The Broadcast Bridge in a one-on-one interview straight from Tel Aviv, that’s only the beginning.

“One of the biggest new features in 4Designer 1.3 is what we call Render to File,” Appleton began. “This allows graphic artists to take the image or sequence they are working on, and render it to a clip. This allows artists to easily send their work for approval in any resolution from proxy level up to UHD, and can be a tremendous time saver in the collaborative review process.”

In fact the graphics specialists can now render scenes to a variety of broadcast video standards including DNxHD, MPEG2 and XDCAM, as well as image sequences in PNG/TGA TIFF and JPEG. This feature comes embedded in the new version of 4Designer.

4Designer enables entertaining 2D/3D motion graphics and visually compelling information in real time.

4Designer enables entertaining 2D/3D motion graphics and visually compelling information in real time.

“We are also aware that a lot of artists are using Adobe Photoshop CC, but previously if they wanted to bring a Photoshop file into 4Designer each layer would be treated as a rastered image,” Appleton said. “Now we have extended our Photoshop importer so 4Designer 1.3 supports separate text and vector layers. This gives the artist the ability to utilize more pre-production content in their workflow, while preserving elements such as the station’s brand identity.”

Avid has also added a Cut Out Editor so the artist can make changes to the vector-based layer as well.

“If you have a cross-section of a 2D object in the Photoshop image with points around it including handles, the Cut Out Editor lets you make changes to it after you have imported the image,” Appleton said.

Graphic artists looking for variety will appreciate the ability to create bar charts in addition to line charts from imported data in 4Designer 1.3. These bar charts can be clustered together or displayed individually.

“This saves the artist a bit of time in production,” Appleton said, “and, of course, the chart can be updated as new data comes in.”

Another feature called Move lets you apply animation from one graphic to another with just one click in the animation editor.

“You can move the animation channel and all it contains from one object or set of graphics to another throughout the scene,” he said. “This is in response to a lot of requests from our customers who need to re-purpose complex animations.

4Designer 1.3 also has a new lens flare feature. You can stack up different flare textures and shift them as the camera pans.

“What we do is connect the lens flare with the light and the camera in a scene, and move the effect as they adjust their position in real time,” Appleton said. “It gives you a good approximation of lens flares in real life without adding a lot of overhead to the rendering.”

It’s all about helping graphics artists getting more work done more easily.

Or as senior product manager Appleton puts it, “This is really about improving the quality of life for the artist. We want them to spend more time on creativity, and less on finding work-arounds. A better user experience means making it easier to get things done.”

But that’s not all, folks. Appleton foreshadowed even more new features and workflow improvements in the next 4Designer upgrade, due out in November.

Let us know what you think…

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