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Neil Sadwelkar
OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 11, 2015 at 8:50:18 am

Smoke on Mac subscribers (incl. me) received a mail about Smoke 2016 being available for download. Logged in to my account and it is there. Downloading.

However, there are no more details, on Autodesk’s web site or in the forum.

Questions like what are system and MacOSX specs, is it OK to install Smoke 2016 on top of Smoke 2015 or does one deactivate and uninstall first.
Will Smoke 2015 projects work in Smoke 2016. And does the storage have to be reconfigured or is it compatible?

Does anyone have info? What's it look and work like?

-----------------------------------
Neil Sadwelkar
neilsadwelkar.blogspot.com
twitter: fcpguru
FCP Editor, Edit systems consultant
Mumbai India


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Walter Soyka
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 11, 2015 at 1:00:05 pm

The official announcement will come soon, but in the meantime, here's the manual:
http://help.autodesk.com/view/SMOKE/2016/ENU/

Including What's New:
http://help.autodesk.com/view/SMOKE/2016/ENU/?guid=GUID-35C77E30-46D0-43CC-...

And the release notes:
http://docs.autodesk.com/smoke/smoke2016-release-notes.pdf

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Oliver Peters
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 11, 2015 at 3:10:52 pm

It will be interesting to see how Resolve 12 and Smoke stack up against each other in the future as film/video finishing tools. Especially once Fusion hits its stride - even as a standalone, but companion application. Certainly free is a compelling driver.

Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Walter Soyka
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 12, 2015 at 12:27:00 am

[Oliver Peters] "It will be interesting to see how Resolve 12 and Smoke stack up against each other in the future as film/video finishing tools. Especially once Fusion hits its stride - even as a standalone, but companion application. Certainly free is a compelling driver."

Indeed. Adding to the mix, I think the Adobe suite punches above their weight and deserves to be part of that conversation.

The next year or two should be interesting for Smoke. It's now fully decoupled from Flame development (which has itself been going all out the last couple years), so I'm curious to see what the new vision for Smoke really is.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Oliver Peters
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 12, 2015 at 12:31:20 am

[Walter Soyka] "I think the Adobe suite punches above their weight and deserves to be part of that conversation."

It's my finishing solution of choice. There's a fairly large chunk of the post community that use AE as their primary finishing application.

[Walter Soyka] "The next year or two should be interesting for Smoke."

I'm not very optimistic. The subscription is too pricey. I don't see them picking up enough new users.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Walter Soyka
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 12, 2015 at 12:51:20 am

[Oliver Peters] "I'm not very optimistic. The subscription is too pricey. I don't see them picking up enough new users."

Oh, I agree. And in breaking compatibility with Flame, Autodesk has alienated a lot of their existing Smoke artists. I am curious to see if they've got a big idea coming for editorial that justifies the decision to separate Smoke from Flame.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Oliver Peters
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 12, 2015 at 12:59:37 am

[Walter Soyka] "I am curious to see if they've got a big idea coming for editorial that justifies the decision to separate Smoke from Flame."

The problem I see is that for someone to make the most out of Smoke, you really have to go very deep and that's a pretty steep learning curve. Plus the architecture is not very logical compared to other apps. AD has done a lot in the most recent versions to let editors do more in just the timeline effects. But if that's all you're going to use, then there are easier, cheaper NLE that will give you results that are just as good.

Top-end systems haven't had a good track-record of going down market. Quantel had Qedit a few years ago as the first product in line with eQ/iQ/Pablo. I don't think they sold a lot of those either.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Walter Soyka
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 12, 2015 at 1:04:02 am

[Oliver Peters] "The problem I see is that for someone to make the most out of Smoke, you really have to go very deep and that's a pretty steep learning curve. Plus the architecture is not very logical compared to other apps. AD has done a lot in the most recent versions to let editors do more in just the timeline effects. But if that's all you're going to use, then there are easier, cheaper NLE that will give you results that are just as good."

Well said. I will wear my "Smoke is changing everything" t-shirt from NAB 2012 ironically tomorrow in honor of this post.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Tim Wilson
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 12, 2015 at 8:34:11 pm

[Walter Soyka] "I will wear my "Smoke is changing everything" t-shirt from NAB 2012 ironically tomorrow in honor of this post."

And I'll wear my Macromedia Final Cut t-shirt. We'll be twins! LOL


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David Mathis
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 14, 2015 at 9:40:54 pm

Brilliant post!


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Ryan Holmes
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 21, 2015 at 2:32:58 am

[Walter Soyka] "And in breaking compatibility with Flame, Autodesk has alienated a lot of their existing Smoke artists. I am curious to see if they've got a big idea coming for editorial that justifies the decision to separate Smoke from Flame."

Coming to this thread a bit late, but as a Smoke user I also fear that AD doesn't actually have a clear direction for Smoke. I'm guessing someone at AD had a "great idea" around 2008/2009 to decouple the Smoke hardware and put Smoke on an off-the-shelf Mac and drop take the bottom out of the cost. So in 2010 we get the first version of SMAC costing a mere $20K. Installation is chore, interface is clunky compared to other editing/finishing apps, and there's hardly any training material around so the transition is quite literally an uphill battle for any new user. The unintended consequence though of the price drop being that current high-end users exploited the cost savings and used it as an inexpensive Flame prep station with the potential to finish if needed (depending on the post house) losing AD sales on additional Flame seats (or previously expensive Smoke seats). Then Apple bungled the FCPX release to such a degree that AD thought they could capitalize on the turmoil like how Adobe was doing with CS5.5, hence the "Smoke is changing everything" slogan at NAB 2012 (about 10 months after the FCP7-->FCPX transition). And Adobe was shipping a polished up version of Premiere in CS6 by May 7th of 2012. So I think AD was trying to channel that turmoil in their favor. It was a very tumultuous time with seemingly entrenched editors really willing to switch tools.
.
However, as [Oliver Peters] notes "The problem I see is that for someone to make the most out of Smoke, you really have to go very deep and that's a pretty steep learning curve. Plus the architecture is not very logical compared to other apps. But if that's all you're going to use, then there are easier, cheaper NLE that will give you results that are just as good." I think SMAC 2016 is making strides in all these directions, but I don't see why a professional editor would choose to spend the time/effort learning Smoke over using more intuitive programs like Media Composer, FCP7 or X, Premiere, or even Resolve or Vegas. I guess the struggle is that Smoke's greatest strength and biggest weakness is its depth. The idea that you can do nearly everything in one app is the dream. Smoke comes close to that, but at a heavy cost both financially and user learning curve wise (I should also note that Adobe's CC 2015 is also getting closer to that holy grail with the enhancements in Dynamic Link between apps, Lumetri color fx in PPro, and all the other add ons they've stuffed in there).

Compounding the learning curve problem is the price! If Resolve 12 actually turns out to be a competent NLE (which we'll have to wait and see, and I don't think version 11 is very good as even a basic editor) how do any of these companies compete with FREE? Resolve Lite, completely free and runs on either Windows or Mac. Additionally it may well solve a vast portion of the editing markets needs....did I mention it's for free? If so, AD's SMAC at $1500/year is way too rich then, and even Adobe CC at $600/year starts to sound steep. FCPX at $300 could compete since you only pay that once, but even then that's $300 more than Resolve Lite.

It seems like AD is now heavily focused on Flame as their main tool. It's what they promoted heavily at NAB and for good reason. Flame has a great niche in the TV/FIlm market. Those artists are typically highly sought after, and the profit margin for AD is likely still good on that product. All those things cannot be said about Smoke any loner. I know many Smoke users, myself included, were confused that AD didn't even have the Smoke logo floating around the NAB booth this year. It was as if the product didn't even exist. As Walter noted, they have uncoupled development releases from Flame. Even their 2016 announcement for Smoke was so small and quiet that if you sneezed you would've missed it. Which leads many to wonder if Smoke already has 1 foot in the grave. Will it go the way of Flint, Combustion, and Softimage? Which is to say, I'm not sure if AD knows what to do with Smoke at this point, especially when considering the shifting landscape both technologically and financially. Smoke has never catered to a broad market like an Apple or Adobe does, and the changes they've made to Smoke for 2016 won't really do much to change the mass appeal either, in my opinion.

So SMAC is a niche product for a dying breed of editor/fx artist that's likely moving over to Adobe/PPro/AE due to cost and functionality or moving up to Flare/Flame/Nuke. So where does that leave Smoke? And as we know...if there's no fire then there's certainly no Smoke! :-)

Ryan Holmes
http://www.ryanholmes.me
@CutColorPost


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Walter Soyka
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 23, 2015 at 1:22:02 pm

[Ryan Holmes] "Coming to this thread a bit late, but as a Smoke user I also fear that AD doesn't actually have a clear direction for Smoke."

Yes, I'm in the same boat. I used to understand what Smoke was -- it was baby Flame -- but now I just have no idea where it's going. What a shame!


[Ryan Holmes] "So SMAC is a niche product for a dying breed of editor/fx artist that's likely moving over to Adobe/PPro/AE due to cost and functionality or moving up to Flare/Flame/Nuke. So where does that leave Smoke? And as we know...if there's no fire then there's certainly no Smoke! :-)"

There's a lot I really like about Smoke, but what Smoke on Mac ultimately taught me was that I really wanted a Flame. I've been noodling a bit with the Flame training edition, and although I don't love the idea that it requires a dedicated workstation that doesn't also run my other major apps (Adobe suite & C4D), I do really like the workflow changes and creative tools Autodesk has added over the last three or four years.

Of course, even with Flame, there's some lingering questions about the future: will the leadership change impact development? Is the pricing model sustainable? Will Autodesk open Flame up more, or will it largely remain an island in production? Should I pack it in and learn NUKE STUDIO? Or (the horror) Resolve/Fusion? Can I stick with Adobe CC and hope they add the kind of creative functionality unique in the market to Flame right now?

I'd like to figure out how to build a business model around it, but it's an expensive box and there's still a lot of uncertainty that makes the multi-year commitment I'd need to make a very big risk.

In the meantime, I keep hoping that Autodesk unleashes Flare as a standalone product.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Ryan Holmes
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 25, 2015 at 6:37:57 pm

[Walter Soyka] "In the meantime, I keep hoping that Autodesk unleashes Flare as a standalone product."

ha ha....I think if AD does that they'll anger both the Flame community and the dwindling Smoke community!


[Walter Soyka] "Of course, even with Flame, there's some lingering questions about the future: will the leadership change impact development? Is the pricing model sustainable? Will Autodesk open Flame up more, or will it largely remain an island in production? Should I pack it in and learn NUKE STUDIO? Or (the horror) Resolve/Fusion? Can I stick with Adobe CC and hope they add the kind of creative functionality unique in the market to Flame right now?"

I think these are good questions. Particularly, the pricing question. With BMD now pushing software for free provided you buy their hardware it creates a race to the bottom effect for nearly all post-production software developers, in a sense. I'm not sure in 5-7 years (sooner?) that there will be many people wanting to lay down $50K+ on a Flame. I know you've discussed this publicly sum, as have I (see here). It creates a tough situation for the M&E division of Autodesk (who's big revenue is in the CAD space anyway).

I'm starting to think that at some point, as the bottom falls out for profit margins with software, that there will be a convergence and consolidation of companies buying each other out. Much like BMD has done with Resolve, Fusion, Cintel, etc...where you buy up a competitor and integrate either parts or resigned wholes of that software as your own product offering. I think BMD has accelerated this trend and it wouldn't surprise me to see the trend speed up (I thought The Foundry would get bought up by someone as well, but that didn't happen this go round).

And to some extend, this idea isn't new - Apple bought FCP, Adobe bought Macromedia, Autodesk bought Discreet, etc. So I recognize it's not new, but it seems like 6 NLE's on the market isn't viable business wise (MC, PPro, FCPX, Smoke, Resolve, Vegas, etc)...but maybe I'm underestimating the other parts of the video editing marketplace? Such as, people who just cut one video here and there for their company or for real estate needs....maybe that's a much bigger place where you can carve out some business? Or the general home user (kid videos, family parties, etc)?

Ryan Holmes
http://www.ryanholmes.me
@CutColorPost


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Walter Soyka
Re: OT: New version of Smoke - Smoke 2016 Mac
on Jun 12, 2015 at 12:23:06 am

Also, Grant Kay has posted his new videos on Smoke 2016:

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLJMSXsdbrZ7ZtjqHgiVViRzZQ2CAc37f5

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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