Smoke 2013 on Linux
What is the current Smoke on Linux strategy?
Do the separate deliniations of Smoke and Smoke Advanced still exist? Does Smoke on Linux = Smoke Advanced by default? What capabilities does Smoke 2013 on Linux have that Smoke 2013 on Mac does not? I assume that the nVidia Quadro SDI daughter card that is present in the Linux system offers capabilities not present in the Mac version (real time deliverables, etc.). I also assume that Smoke on Linux will remain a hardware/software turnkey product and that there will not be a software-only Linux option.
Frederic has mentioned that the Smoke 2013 on Linux UI will be different from the Smoke 2013 on Mac UI. Will the Smoke on Linux UI continue to look like Smoke 2012? Will Batch still be called Batch, or will it be called ConnectFX?
Smoke Advanced is currently the only option for Linux, and is a turnkey system. I believe Smoke2013 on Linux will continue to combine features from Flame and Lustre, where Smoke on Mac is catered to a different audience and price point.
For example, I could see Smoke on Linux get the 3D tracker and planar tracking from Flame and Lustre. I can't imagine them offering those on Smoke on Mac for a while. Smoke on Linux also benefits from a more comprehensive batch and the desktop, instead of connectfx.
Autodesk Smoke Artist
Quite honestly, I can't see Autodesk's old business model working for much longer. Autodesk is a software company and that's money. When they took Discreet over, I think we all knew the days of turnkey (hardware) sys were coming to an end. That pretty much happened quickly as AD shifted it to resellers, which today build and service the systems. Smoke 2K in 2008/09 was $120K+ and along came SMack in 2010, which sliced the price in half! Sure, 15K software + 2K license, but really 50K - 60K for full sys. Now slash it again -- more than half this time -- and justifying 100K+ for Advanced on Linux, no way. The only thing I can see AD doing is porting Smoke over to Windows 8 and opening themselves up to a boatload of sales. For the sake of conversation, if AD prices Smoke on PC @ 5K, it's a win win for them, and resellers can build killer PC systems w/better margins than what they can make on Mac builds. I'll take it one step further, my gut tells me AD will do the same w/Flame. They'll port it to both platforms and price it 5K-10K higher than Smoke. As for Lustre, they'll likely integrate it into Smoke and Flame and call it a day. What??? Are they going to have a lot of Flame Premium or Lustre sales if they port everything else to Mac & PC?
I for one, given the choice, would a pay little extra (grand or 2) to run Smoke on a HPZ820. I'm not a fan of Windows, but these days I'm not to keen on Mac either. Migrating away from FCP is proving to be a royal pain in my arse and the blame falls squarely on Apple not giving a damn about us! I think AD is on to that sentiment and gunnin' for our business.
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with all the comprehensive products on linux, i.e. flame, lustre, etc... there are loads of features that could ultimately be ported to the mac version of smoke over time. i imagine with each release they'll add a feature here and there from those beasts.
i personally hope they keep it all in a single app; that is if they do port flame or lustre that they incorporate as much as possible into a single application which simplifies the workflow. i think thats what users and studios prefer nowadays, in particular smaller outfits - round trips waste time and resources.
all in one app and away you go or at minimum apps that "seamlessly" work together.
with flame in smoke, will you really need any other application for editing & compositing?
nuke seems to be leading the way at the moment wrt compositing but i think (and hope) AD can steel market share.
Yeah...it's hard to argue that Autodesk's system doesn't require round tripping, when they are installing 3 pieces of software on a box and you have to log in and out of each for editing, effects, grading. Granted, it is by far the best workflow compared to FCP->AE->Resolve etc and allows for edits and media to be maintained throughout the entire process.
Autodesk would have a winner if they took Smoke, gave it all the nodes of flame with the option of a reels desktop, and had the lustre interface incorporated as a soft effect or module. You'd have the power of shape tracking/secondaries, with the flexibility of remaining in an offline editing environment, along with Flame's VFX. Make that a turnkey system for $50K on those HP stations and it would be a no brainer.
Now finding someone to sit in that chair and be able to perform all those functions...that's another story.
Autodesk Smoke Artist