Apple Debutes Final Cut Express HD (UPDATED)

SAN FRANSISCO -- Calling 2005 "the year of HD video editing," Apple CEO Steve Jobs announced Final Cut Express HD at his Mac Expo keynote address Tuesday, the companyis new high-definition video editing suite.

Mr. Jobs called Final Cut Express HD "the next generation of video editing".

Among its features will include LiveType of animated titling, soundtracks for custom music, seamless iMovie file support and project integration with Motion.

The software allows users to instantly preview effects, filters, transitions and multi-stream composites in real time, without rendering. Final Cut Express HD also supports Digital Cinema Desktop, a feature that enables HD and DV preview monitoring on a primary or secondary Apple Cinema Display, and supports direct timeline file placement from Motion, Appleis real-time motion graphics design program.

The product now includes Soundtrack, Appleis music creation software that includes 4,000 royalty-free, professionally-recorded instrument loops and sound effects

iMovie projects can be imported directly into Final Cut Express HD with all effects, transitions and audio levels intact. iMovie users can utilize the advanced functions of Final Cut Express HD to enhance videos with more powerful effects, video layer compositing, dynamic text and graphics and custom music.

The product will retail for US$299 and will be available in February, Mr. Jobs told the crowd at the Moscone Convention Center. Current owners will be able to upgrade for $99.

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