Today at the Avid Connect event that precedes NAB 2017 Avid announced Media Composer | First. This will be a free version of Media Composer targeted at “aspiring creative professionals, students, and those just starting their professional careers.” And no, you’re not having deja vu. Avid actually announced this free version back in 2015 but here we are 2 years later and it looks like it will finally ship on June. You can sign up and get notified when it finally drops. And hit up the Media Composer | First FAQ for more questions answered.
You’re also not having deja vu back to the early to mid–2000’s when Avid had another free version of a Media Composer-like editing application called Avid Free DV. So Avid isn’t new to this entry level, free software. They also make Pro Tools | First as well so that’s for the entry level audio folks out there.
Our friends at Going Postal Show were there at the Avid Connect event and got a few video clips of the Media Composer | First demo.
Media Composer | First is a good thing and I don’t understand what took them two years to finally get it out (assuming it ships in June). And it’s not a moment too soon. While Media Composer is still the kind of Hollywood I don’t think it’s the king of young editors anymore. I’m teaching an intro to editing class at a university in Nashville and they require students to learn Avid as they are gearing the program toward Hollywood. But 75% of these freshman have good experience in either Adobe Premiere Pro CC or Final Cut Pro X. Many of the have a real difficulty grasping the Avid-way of editing and why a number of seemingly simple tasks are either way more difficult in Media Composer or takes a lot more steps. Hopefully Media Composer | First can at least get more eyeballs on Media Composer before potential media creation students are forced onto it in school.
It will be welcome.
What’s the limitations of Media Composer | First? We won’t know for sure until it ships but these are the bullet points from the notification page:
- Edit at the speed of your creativity with a streamlined tool that makes video creation fun and easy for aspiring and beginning storytellers
- Unleash ideas across four video tracks and eight audio tracks, enabling you to quickly cut together layers of video, dialog, music, and sound effects to enhance your story
- Easily share content with the world and get recognition for your work with one-click publishing to social media, including YouTube and Vimeo
- Get professional results with little effort using many of the same tools the pros use to create your favorite movies, TV shows, commercials, and video games
While there will be some serious limitations Media Composer | First looks like it will be an easy way to get your feet wet with this industry standard NLE. That is if it actually ships this time.