Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Version 15.11 re-released for Windows

Shortly after the first release of 15.11 for Windows we discovered two new major problems that were fixed for a new 15.11.03 version, available now for download. The problems were a failure to launch due to a missing DLL in the installer, and encode jobs stuck in a pending state and not completing.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

New Release 15.11

Version 15.11 is now available for download. Here is the quick list of new things:
  • Added Rutt-Etra-Izer video filter.
  • Added audio/video device and screen capture for OS X.
  • Added screen capture for Windows.
  • Added keyboard shortcuts for trimming on Timeline: I, Shift+I, O, Shift+O.
  • Added support for ripple trimming on Timeline.
  • Added Application Log to View menu.
  • Added Save button to text viewer dialogs (logs, XML).
  • Added video Deinterlace, Interpolation, and Parallel-processing options to Encode panel.
  • Reorganize the Settings menu and added headings.
  • Added Close action to File menu.
The Rutt-Etra-Izer filter might seem like a strange addition, but there is an interesting backstory to it. When I discovered it and learned about the WebGL version by Felix Turner a couple of years ago, I thought I ought to be able to make it work with Shotcut's HTML filtering system (WebVfx). It requires the ability to read pixel data in JavaScript, which has not really worked correctly until the Shotcut upgrade to Qt 5.5. So, now we have it.

For a long while now, we have supported audio and video devices on Linux such as microphones, webcams, and more as well as screen capture. A year ago, we added A/V device support on Windows. With this release, thanks to the recent upgrade to FFmpeg 2.7, we extend device and screen capture coverage to all supported operating systems.

The last big new thing is a boost for trimming on the timeline. The new keyboard shortcuts only let you reduce the duration of a clip. It might be easier to think of this as a smarter way to split/slice a clip on the timeline, and it affects the clip under the playhead - not the currently selected clip. Very often, one - based on their technique - splits a clip and then removes one of the new pieces. Well, these trimming keyboard shortcuts are actually like two steps in one: split and remove. Just like elsewhere, there are two ways to remove: lift and ripple-delete. Ripple means to affect the position of all following clips and not leave (or extend) a gap. It is named after  the ripple effect of throwing a rock in a pond. That is why the timeline toolbar icon looks like a few circles. Oh, and that ripple button now takes on a newly expanded role of also toggling whether drag-trimming the ends of a clip with the mouse ripples the following shots. I will try to make a video soon to better explain and show all of this.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Version 15.10 re-released

We found a major regression with GPU processing in v15.10 release (15.10.01 in Help > About). Now, this is an experimental feature, but some people are using it or like to give it a try. Therefore, I just uploaded a new version 15.10.06 with no new features over .01.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

New Release 15.10

Version 15.10 is now available for download. This is a bugfix-only release - no new features. Except, there are new Dutch and Russian translations - thank you, asilnevs and rayanayar.

After the addition of new features such as insert/remove track and a major upgrade to libraries in recent releases, we just wanted to focus further on stabilization and bug-fixing. We have fixed some issues in regions that do not use a period as the decimal mark. Why only some? Well, we are not entirely confident we have reproduced all possible problems. However, we did find and fix a major bug in that area. In addition, when opening a project document, we added a function to look for a malformed project containing both periods and commas in some numeric values. Why only "some?" Because, with filters there are many possible values to locate. In addition, in this first pass on that function, we wanted to be conservative about how heavily we modify the document. Only some fixes are better than horribly mangling it into something useless, right? Thus, only edit timing and size/position rectangle values are repaired. Do not be frightened by this; your original project is not modified. First, you will receive a warning dialog including the option to not repair the project. Also, it makes and uses a copy of your project file with "Repaired" in the new name.

You will also find some fixes for long-standing problems such as:
  • audio waveforms not appearing correctly for long clips on the timeline,
  • drag-n-drop from Windows Explorer not working reliably,
  • animated GIFs loading as a still single image,
  • crashes opening a project containing a Text filter,
  • crashes using the draggable fade controls on the timeline, and
  • missing scroll bars around filter parameters.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

New Release 15.09

Version 15.09 is ready for download and aims to improve compatibility and stability on modern systems. This was primarily achieved by upgrading to Qt 5.5. This fixes compatibility issues on Linux systems with AMD graphics. It also introduces a DirectX display method option on Windows (when not using GPU processing) for systems with inadequate OpenGL. With that said, there are some caveats; notice we said "modern systems." The new version is 64-bit only for all operating systems. After all, 64-bit CPUs have been available for nearly 12 years. Also, the OS X version requires at least OS X 10.8. In addition:
  • Added Scrub Audio to Settings menu.
  • Added Display Method to Settings menu (Windows only).
  • Added Portugal Portuguese translation to Settings menu.
  • Added Mute audio filter.
  • Updated FFmpeg to v2.7.

Monday, August 10, 2015

New Release 15.08

Well, what do you know? It turns out there is a v15.08 for download after all! It was delayed due to build infrastructure problems and travel. While we have been focusing lately on a major UI toolkit upgrade, I wanted to get some fixes out. In addition, there are some new things:
  • Added a Greek translation (thank you, firewalker).
  • Added a Ripple All Tracks option to the Timeline menu (default is off).
    In version 15.06, we changed insert and delete operations to ripple (move following clips) across all unlocked tracks. It turns out that enough new and casual users found that disorienting and did not realize there is track locking to control it. Therefore, we added a toggle option in the timeline menu (see button on timeline toolbar). More advanced users who want this behavior will have to turn it on.
  • 5 new audio dynamics filters (thank you, Lauren):
    • Compressor
    • Delay
    • Expander
    • Limiter
    • Reverb

Thursday, July 2, 2015

New Release 15.07

Version 15.07 of Shotcut is now available for download. Here is a quick rundown on the new features and changes with details to follow:
4K logo
  • 4K UHD support
  • 5 new video filters:
    • Old Film: Dust
    • Old Film: Grain
    • Old Film: Projector
    • Old Film: Scratches
    • Old Film: Technocolor
  • 5 new audio filters:
    • Bass & Treble (3-band graphic equalizer)
    • Band Pass
    • High Pass
    • Low Pass
    • Notch
  • Added Insert Track and Remove Track
  • New default Encode settings produce a better quality H.264 MP4 file
  • Composite now defaults to on/enabled for new video tracks
Shotcut has been able to do 4K for a while now if you made a custom video mode or correctly use automatic mode. However, there were a few things we wanted to do before making it official. First, you really need to be using a 64-bit build, and we delivered that for Windows in the previous release. For this release, we added 4K video modes to the Settings menu and extended our support for Blackmagic Design 4K SDI & HDMI devices (tested output with Intensity Pro 4K).

The new audio and video filters were produced by two teenage daughters for a summer job/project! These old film video effects can be considered toy filters. The film grain effect does not try to emulate any real film stock, and the Technocolor filter does not try to faithfully reproduce the 20th century Technicolor processes. It merely intends to approximate the look. Therefore, our spelling with an 'o' is intentional to avoid any false claims and association with the trademark.
animated GIF of old film effects

Often, we get asked "how do I export?" To which we sometimes reply, "Encode > Encode File > enter a filename ending with .mp4" as beginners or casual users do not want to figure out a preset or custom settings to use. However, that did not always produce great results. The new default Encode settings are setup to produce a good - but not big - MP4 for any resolution and frame rate. This means it no longer defaults to using the filename extension to choose format and codecs. Previously, it would produce a 2 Mb/s average bitrate file, which did not look good for 1080 or higher. The new default uses a quality-based variable bitrate making it more convenient and easy to output for modern devices and Internet sharing.

Another frequently asked question is how to make a picture-in-picture or make a new video track use the alpha channel (transparency). It seems most people are using additional video tracks for overlay/compositing. Therefore, we decided to enable composite by default for additional video tracks. If you are not using the video track for that and do not like the decreased performance as a result, you can simply click that 'C' button in the track header to turn it off.