The Next Shoe Drops: Autodesk Announces Smoke 2013

Posted on by Larry

This afternoon, at a press event just before the start of the 2012 NAB Show, Autodesk announced a major revamp of Smoke – titled “Autodesk Smoke 2013.” The new version drops the price to $3,495, adds a Timeline interface, and allows it to play extremely well with others. Autodesk is actively encouraging editors to view Smoke as their all-in-one edit and finishing tool.

Autodesk recognizes that the face of post-production is changing. While its effects and finishing tools are world-class, its node-based design is intimidating to many editors. With the addition of a timeline-based editorial workflow, Autodesk is encouraging more editors to do their rough-cut in the same tool they use for finishing.

Or, if editors want to continue using their existing tools, it is easy, using XML, to flow projects from Final Cut Pro, or other editing software, into Smoke. In fact, at their press event this afternoon, Autodesk said that they “built the application for editors that know Final Cut Pro and other NLEs.”

NOTE: Apple, in fact, highlighted the new Smoke in my meeting with them this morning. Apple stressed how easy it is to edit in FCP X and finish in Smoke.

Marc Hamaker, Senior Director Product Marketing and Creative Finishing for Autodesk Media & Entertainment, took the stage at the AutoDesk presentation this afternoon to showcase the new all-in-one Smoke with a unified editing and effects workflow. He pointed out that Smoke can help editors simplify their workflow, centrally manage their media, and work interactively with high-res media throughout a project to deliver high-end content.

He stressed that Smoke does far more than just edit:

They also said, in a fascinating eyebrow-lifter, that Smoke has been retooled to run on the most recent generation Apple iMac and MacBook Pro systems. Though a Thunderbolt storage system, or other high-speed storage,  is highly encouraged, editors are no longer forced to run this system only on high-end MacPros.

The powerful node-based compositing that Smoke is justifiably famous for is not gone, it is now combined with a highly-efficient timeline to create a highly-connected, highly-integrated editing and effects system.

“The new Smoke is a content creator that helps your work stand out,” said Hamaker at the press event. “We asked editors what they wanted most and they told us they wanted to save time.”

Autodesk says that Smoke is scheduled to be released later this fall; however, even better news is that they will offer a free beta version in June.

As always, let me know what you think.


13 Responses to The Next Shoe Drops: Autodesk Announces Smoke 2013

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  1. Bill Coger says:

    As a former Avid DS editor I love what Autodesk has done With Smoke. But just because the software has dropped in price doesn’t mean this system still won’t be pretty steep to operate unless the maintenance agreements and the cost of of plug ins have also dropped considerably. Most plug ins that run on Smoke cost few thousand dollars more than for FCP and their maintenance agreements in the past have been outrageous. Was the same with Avid DS.

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