Discreet Ships smoke 6 for Linux Workstations

Discreet has begun shipping its smoke 6 system on the Intel-based IBM workstation running Linux. The smoke 6 editing and finishing system is already available on the Silicon Graphics Octane2 and Silicon Graphics Tezro visual workstations. The addition of Linux workstation support and new pricing ensures that the smoke 6 system is accessible to broadcasters and the growing segment of mid-range post-production facilities.

Global interest in Discreet's smoke 6 on this new platform is demonstrated by early sales to Dynamo in Brazil, Arizona; Producoes and Pix Mix in Portugal; Imarion and Buzz Image Group in Canada; Serena Digital in Spain; and Prime Focus in India. Analyst firm TrendWatch reports that 57% of U.S. broadcast studios expect that business in 2004 will be better than last year. As a result, Discreet anticipates the demand for broadcast graphics and promos, and post-production work for television commercials to rise, thereby fuelling demand for its smoke 6 system.

"Discreet's smoke 6 system on the Linux workstation is a great addition to our services," said Jean-Marc Laurin, smoke editor at Montreal-based Buzz Image Group. "The system is incredibly fast and versatile. Our clients are amazed at its speed. With the immense power of Discreet's finishing tools incorporated into the smoke timeline, I can finally construct, create and experiment with what's in my head and propose rapid solutions to the client -- solutions that weren't on the board. I can push the limits of my ideas."

Buzz Image Group is using Discreet's smoke 6 system on the Intel-based IBM workstation running Linux as a "creation station" where story, effects and designs fuse together to create pre-builds for high-end motion-picture effects, total conform and packaging for multi-format television series, motion graphics and design for major network and product branding. Discreet's smoke 6 system for Linux is also used to edit and finish commercial spots, network promos and music videos. The system is fully integrated with Buzz Image Group's fleet of Discreet inferno, flame, flint and fire systems.

smoke 6 for Linux is a standard-definition (SD) system that features high quality OpenGL graphics, uncompressed standard definition video I/O (PAL/NTSC) and a choice of Discreet's high-performance stone Fibre Channel storage arrays, including the option for fully redundant hardware RAID 5 solutions. For details on product features visit www.discreet.com/smoke.

"Discreet's smoke 6 on the Linux workstation is delivering unparalleled performance to digital artists," said Bob Lenard, director for IBM IntelliStation Workstations. "The availability of smoke 6 on the Linux workstation could not be better timed. We're seeing post-production and broadcast companies strongly embrace Linux migration because of its speed, networkability and cost-effectiveness."

Discreet collaborated with visual computing technology provider NVIDIA to build high-performance Linux drivers and deliver the smoke 6 system on a Linux workstation. NVIDIA's powerful Quadro FX 3000G graphics genlocking feature was selected for its extensive high-end graphics and video capabilities. Said Jeff Brown, general manager of workstation product management at NVIDIA, "Discreet and NVIDIA have advanced functionality on standard platforms -- this is a huge leap forward for professional visual computing. Discreet's smoke 6 system is resetting industry expectations because it proves that a rock-solid, turnkey editing and finishing system can run on a Linux-based workstation."

Broadcaster CBS2 in Chicago is making extensive use of its Discreet smoke system in its promo and design departments. Discreet's smoke system has been used on numerous other broadcast projects such as Nickelodeon's series FAIRLY ODD PARENTS (Broadway Video), Super Bowl XXXVIII graphics and promos for CBS (Broadway Video), promos for Indianapolis-based WHTR-TV and New York-based WPIX-TV and Boston-based WBZ-TV's graphics packages and promos.

"Discreet's smoke 6 on the Intel-based IBM workstation running Linux gives broadcasters and mid-range post-production facilities more choice in their editing and finishing systems," said Martin Vann, vice president of sales and marketing at Discreet. "With smoke 6, digital media professionals have better access to a powerful, proven editing system, and with our program of platform transparency, customers can migrate applications to the platform which best meets their requirement."

Discreet's smoke 6 for Linux is now shipping worldwide, with North American pricing for a turnkey system starting at $68,000. For more information on configurations and pricing, please contact Discreet sales at 800-869-3504.

Discreet's (www.discreet.com) solutions are designed for digital media creation, management and delivery-across all disciplines from film and television visual effects, color grading and editing to animation, game development, Web/interactive and design visualization. Discreet is based in Montreal, Canada, and is a division of Autodesk Inc, a leading design and digital media creation, management and distribution company.

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