ArKaos, like every other company, has defined its own culture during his evolution. We had the chance to start creating real time video software very early, which gave us the advantage to collect a large user base.
Because we were amongst the first on the market we also saw the new generation coming and thus had the opportunity to help by providing it the needed tools. Basically, we understood that computers were replacing expansive hardware video players and that with so much more flexibility.
We’ve also been very careful with pricing when releasing new software. Although ArKaos VJ had perfectly integrated DMX it was first built to be synchronized with MIDI and it’s original price of around 300$ was adapted to the music business.
Later when we released ArKaos VJ DMX we could benefit from the fact that the ArKaos VJ MIDI licenses sold until then had already covered most of the costs for research and development, which allowed us to price ArKaos VJ DMX at around 700$
Such a low price was a very aggressive move from us on the Show & Lighting market, which has been reacting carefully at first. Indeed, our pricing was more a problem than an advantage, it gave the perception that if the price was cheap the software would also be cheap in features. But during the five years ArKaos VJ DMX has been available, many licenses were sold, which finally proved us we were right.
Even more, we like to think that we created a little revolution in the lighting industry with the Simple Mode interface – first introduced in ArKaos VJ DMX – that allows anyone that needs to control some video content without complex programming to do it in a few clicks, without the need of an expansive server, thanks to a software under the 1000$
Another way for us to fight against the idea that professional video control means big hardware video player was to use the computers architecture at the full extend and ensure that even a laptop can run our software.
This was an important software development decision because of course we could have reduced our target to just one configuration like most of our competitors do, but we always refused to go for that easy way. All this is a part of our culture, it’s the ArKaos vision of designing video software.
Four years ago, after spending ten years working on ArKaos VJ (it started in 1996) we had to decide to make a big step forward and create a new application; in 1996 there was no GPU, no multi core CPU’s, no open source toolkits to develop cross platform software faster and easier..
So we started from scratch and developed MediaMaster for Mac and Windows, with full multi core support and with a very flexible GPU interface that will run on laptops and fly on powerful computers with high end graphics cards.
The first version was purely dedicated to fixture control for modern DMX lighting desks but we very soon realized that in order to fill the gap left by ArKaos VJ DMX we also needed a Simple Mode interface and some basic control through MIDI or computer keyboard – which are the main new features in MediaMaster 2.0.
We now continue to work on MediaMaster, adding DirectX 11 support for best performances on Windows Seven and implementing support for the latest Quartz Composer effects from Snow Leopard.
In the mean time, it’s important for us that our ArKaos VJ DMX user base stays on track with the latest development we have done, which is why we offer them a MediaMaster Express license for free or at a reduced price (depending on the license registration date).
Switching from ArKaos VJ DMX to MediaMaster Express will bring you support for multi core CPU’s which allows to layer more loops, a flexible library interface for content management, frame blending allowing extremely smooth video playback at reduced speed, a whole new range of real time effects and a redesigned interface which allows to preview all running layers at the same time.
If you liked ArKaos VJ DMX, MediaMaster Express is really worth every cent.