Pro Video Apps Now Only in Final Cut Studio -- Apple is no longer offering their pro video applications as stand-alone products. Since the majority of customers are buying the $1,300 Final Cut Studio (which includes Final Cut Pro 5, Motion 2, Soundtrack Pro, and DVD Studio Pro 4), only the suite is now available for purchase; standalone versions will remain available in stores only until supply runs out.
One of the announcements at last week's Macworld Expo keynote was that a universal binary version of the Final Cut Studio suite will be available in March 2006, much earlier than expected. Owners of Final Cut Studio will be able to "cross-grade" to the universal binary version for $50 at that time. This is important because current Final Cut Studio apps won't run at all on Intel-based Macs; if you buy an Intel-based iMac today, you're out of luck for working with pro video until March (realistically, you probably won't be buying an iMac to do pro video, but you get the idea). But Apple is offering a great upgrade deal: if you own the stand-alone Final Cut Pro 5, you can buy the entire suite for $100. If you own just one of the other pro applications or Final Cut Pro 4, you can upgrade for just $200. And if you own a version that's two revisions or older, the suite costs $700. [JLC]