Post guru Mike Fayette tells why Avid still will dominate the post field, despite drastic changes

One thing is for sure. It won’t be the same NAB this year and it may never be the same again. Let’s recap.

In January, Avid surprised the industry by announcing that it would not exhibit at NAB, ending their presence at what had been one of the most heavily attended booths at the show.

Apple then dropped a similar bombshell. It also was pulling out of NAB, leaving a gaping hole among the Mac-based software companies that will exhibit at NAB (April 11-17 in Las Vegas).

Just recently, Avid announced the first of several dramatic changes. It completely dropped development and sales of their entry-level system – Xpress Pro – and then slashed the price of their flagship product, Media Composer, 50% — from $4,995 to $2,495.

Student pricing for a fully-featured version of the Composer software package dropped to a breathtakingly low of $295. This is an unbelievable bargain for software that cost more than $100,000 not so long ago.

Ironically, these changes were touted under the somewhat lame-sounding banner of “New Thinking.”

So what are they thinking? And what other bombshells are lurking out there?

The many self-styled pundits, who have been predicting Avid’s demise for years, take these announcements as proof that the end is near for this iconic media company.

I don’t believe it.

Not touting its strong features may be Avid’s failure

Despite years of self-mutilation, Avid still has the only industrial strength editing software designed for large organizations that can benefit from their innovative work-flow, and features like ScriptSync, DeCompose and Interplay. It’s also true, however, that Avid has failed miserably in communicating the benefits of these exceptional tools to their customers.

However, as good as some parts of their software is, it’s also the opinion of many editors that Avid has failed to introduce any truly major improvements in their basic editing product and user interface in almost ten years.