It's a big day for the Lightworks team today because they're releasing a big new upgrade. Even though it's a "point" release, there's a lot of important stuff in there, so let's dive straight in
This is the first time that Windows and Linux versions of Lightworks have been released. Soon to come is the Mac version, but we do not have dates for this yet (more on this later in the article).
There are some big new features, including background importing, rendering and even exporting. Speaking of which, export to YouTube is now built-in.
There's more hardware support with AJA's ioXT now recognised by the software. Subtle changes to the UI make navigation more direct and intuitive, and the screen elements adjust more easily to different screen resolutions including Retina - in readiness for the Mac release.
All the details are given in the full press release after the break, but first, there are two very important changes.
Not everyone likes them, and those that do want more flexibility. So with this release, there is a choice of a monthly payment, as well as the usual yearly one. Prices for the Pro version have increased slightly. They are as follows:
$79.99 | 59.99€ | £49.99 per year
$7.99 | 5.99€ | £4.99 Per month
There is a new option to buy Lightworks outright. This is a one-off payment that allows you to use the current version indefinitely. The price is:
$279.99 | 214.99€ | £179.99
It now allows users to import all professional and consumer video formats natively on its timeline, giving exactly the same editing experience as the Pro version. The difference between the two levels of product is that the Pro version has a much wider range of output options, whereas the Free version is limited to web formats (ie MPEG4/H.264), at up to 720p. The Pro version also retains exclusively project sharing, support for Matrox, Blackmagic and AJA I/O.
They want you to use Lightworks
I presume the reasoning here is that Editshare wants as many people as possible to use the product, and the vast majority of beginners and semi-serious users share their work on the web. If the software is being used professionally - then the upgrade to Pro price (whether monthly or yearly or outright) is trivial - and certainly much lower than any other professional product.
Other things that have been changed include the need for an AC3 audio codec: there's now no need to install a separate Windows AC3 filter. Right-click functionality has been improved and there's now a Curve effect for colour correction effects.
A refreshed website, at www.lwks.com, is launching today.
And the Mac version? No dates yet but we've heard that it's close to a closed Alpha release, although we understand that the Mac code is already running very well. It will then move as soon as possible to a public Beta release, which will be the first time that everyone will be able to get their hands on this long-awaited final piece to the cross-platform NLE puzzle.
Finally, kudos to the Lightworks and Editshare teams writing the software and making the equipment that was at the centre of The Wolf of Wall Street. I'm not sure how many makes of NLE have been used to produce Oscar-nominated films, but you could probably count them on the fingers of one hand.
Press release in full after the break