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Product Spotlight: Pow! Pix/Pinnacle/Avid software

Sep 30, 2002  •  Post A Comment

What it is: Pow! Pix/Pinnacle/Avid software for digital post-production broadcast. Pow! Pix, a multiservice editorial company, worked with Pinnacle to devise a method to ingest content quickly with Pinnacle’s Deko character generator on an Avid Unity System.
The problem: ESPN ran into a roadblock last winter with its X Games coverage because it wanted to use animated statistics, scoreboards and ID graphics built on a Deko machine at a live-to-tape event, said Bob Barzyk, president of Pow! Pix in New York, a post-production facility and a solution provider. The Avid system couldn’t capture more than one video source at a time, which prevented Avid from accommodating the Deko video output. The companies together designed a software solution to streamline the post process, saving ESPN time and money, he said. ESPN wanted its editors to be able to seamlessly ingest a graphics-rich Deko page into Avid.
“We needed to figure out a way to get [the page] from Pinnacle to Avid,” Mr. Barzyk said. “It’s a complex page with type and flying graphics. The trick was getting it out of Deko and into Avid quickly with drag-and-drop [capabilities].” The image and audio were not easily portable without a laborious process. The Avid and Deko devices were unable to communicate without real-time synchronization.
The solution: “By moving graphics files from Deko to Avid as a file rather than video signals, Deko users could push the file to a shared network server and editors could rapidly import,” said Harris Uphorn, chief engineer for Pow! Pix. “There is less complexity. It is a more elegant solution and doesn’t require much synchronization.” Pinnacle wrote the software, while Pow! Pix handled the testing on Avid.
The solution was used this summer for the first time for the X Games. The show operated on a three-hour turnaround time to cut the pieces, add graphics and output to tape, Mr. Barzyk said.
Target market: Mr. Barkzyk said he expects the software to be used on graphics-intense shows with fast turnaround times.