The best way to understand this system is to look, first, at a Non-Linear system and then at a traditional Linear one. This will show how the Multi-Linear system evolves. Non-Linear editing generally includes the following possibilities: random access to video clips; a timeline where events are placed and the ability to sort and reorder clips immediately. Most of these systems also include some kind of transition generator, some in real time, some not.
Traditional editing techniques share many of these features but, unfortunately, many of them are only available in the most sophisticated editing drivers. The advantage of ETC is to make these high-performance features available on PC platforms, which reduces costs impressively.
Where is the Multi-Linear system located?
The first step for ETC was to eliminate the obvious side of Non-Linear systems: having to record and pre-digitize all the original material; secure it in a type of digital recording that might not be sufficient for the necessary quality standards; not being able to perform effects in real time and having to use the effects that are available in the system; not being able to use external switchers; not have the possibility to operate other equipment such as DDR, VTR, DVE or any other; and have access to only one source at a time.
In response to these shortcomings in Non-Linear systems, ETC has developed the first Multi-Linear Editing System called ENSEMBLE GOLD. After almost two years of development, this system is online and producing daily news and information programs.
The system uses internal or external drives for effect transition. Some DDR (Digital Disk Recorders), such as the Tektronix Profile, have a card available for effect construction. The transmission mechanisms (Drivers) of most of the most common devices for performing effects are included in this system.
With the Ensemble Gold package software, the operator has the ability to edit in Non-Linear, Hybrid System or Linear Mode. The Ensemble Gold does not require pre-recording on the hard drive for the operator to review an event so the material on the hard drive is easily accessible as a clip. All trades are made as fast as the operator moves within the editing process.
After finishing the project on this system, it can be easily downloaded to another medium, or as EDL (Edit Decision List). The Multi-Linear system allows to control external equipment in a completely Non-Linear environment. It does not compromise the effects to gain the advantages of a system like this and can use existing higher quality switchers or effect systems as a real-time mechanism and still work in a similar environment. Editing Technologies Corp. also offers, as an option, 3D effect packages for the internal generation of various transitions and DVE effects.