The second big announcement from Nero today is Nero 9, the new version of their flagship software most often thought of in the context of CD/DVD burning. But it does so much more – ripping, burning, editing, backing up, playing, and uploading music, photos, and video. The Nero StartSmart interface provides a convenient one-stop interface to all of the product features.
Nero 9 adds GraceNote integration for automated metadata retrieval and improved experiences in Nero ShowTime for playback and Nero Vision for editing. And Nero Live for Vista MCE and the Nero Vista Sidebar Gadget add more features for users of Windows Vista. For backups the Rescue Agent has been completely revised
The revised Nero ShowTime has an all-new UI, GraceNote metadata support, and shuffle for playlists and audio CD tracks. But perhaps most interesting is support for new formats. encrypted AVCREC is supported for HDTV on DVD in Japan. The Matroska Video (.mkv) video format is supported. And FLAC is supported for lossless audio playback.
Nero Vision supports AVCHD, the format used by HD camcorders. And it has a ‘tape scan’ feature where it can transfer the contents of the tape at high speed to preview it, allowing you to select just the sections you want to transfer at full quality. It is similar to have most scanners allow you to do a preview scan and then select only the parts you want to scan fully. A big time saver.
It also includes Ad Spotter, an automated commercial recognition system. This makes it easier to cut the commercials out of recorded content before burning it to disc. It will flag what it thinks are commercials, allowing you to remove those sections. It also has an interesting Music Grabber function, designed to allow you to pull just the audio out of a video and save it as MP3. So if you record a music video you can rip the audio out and take the song with you on your iPod, etc.
And, of course, it still has the usual features – templates to ease media creation, wizards, special transition effects, DVD menu creation, etc. Just expanded and improved.
The one thing I was surprised by on the call is that Nero 9 apparently does not support .tivo files – the files created by TiVoToGo. This surprised me because TiVo and Nero announced a partnership last November, and Roxio, who is also partnered with TiVo, supports .tivo files in their Creator product on Windows and Toast on Mac. So it would’ve seemed to be a no-brainer for Nero to incorporate native .tivo support in Nero 9. Now, that’s the official word from the call last Friday. It is possible that Nero 9 does recognize .tivo files, just not officially. I wasn’t given a preview of the software to check for myself. If anyone grabs Nero 9 and tries it, leave a comment.
A Blu-ray authoring plug-in is also available for Nero 9, allowing you to author Blu-ray video discs for playback in any Blu-ray deck, PS3, etc. Perfect for archiving or distributing copies of the high-definition content from your HD camcorder.
Nero 9 is available today for for Windows PCs with an MSRP of $99.99, and the Blu-ray plug-in is available for just $9.99. Existing Nero users can upgrade online.
After seeing the presentation on Friday, and looking through the press materials, I just may pick this up for my new laptop. (Which arrived last Thursday.)
Nero Simplifies Creation and Distribution of Digital Media with Release of Nero 9
Next generation of world’s best-selling digital multimedia solution makes it easy for consumers to enjoy their unique digital media content anytime, anywhere and on any device
Karlsbad, Germany (September 29, 2008) — Nero, creators of Liquid Media technology, today announced the release of Nero 9, the next generation of one of the world’s most trusted and best-selling integrated digital media and home entertainment software solutions. Developed in direct response to customer feedback, Nero 9 gives consumers ONE solution to easily create, edit, rip, copy, backup, convert and share their music, videos and photos within their connected digital home, on online communities or on portable devices. This latest release builds on Nero’s established technology leadership while delivering on the company’s commitment to Liquid Media, allowing content to be created and distributed anytime, anywhere and on any device.
“In developing Nero 9, we polled more than 3,000 of our worldwide customers to determine the functionality that they really wanted from the suite,” noted Jürgen Kurz, senior vice president, Business Line PC and Consumer Electronics, Nero AG. “This type of feedback has been invaluable to us over the last decade and has shown us that our consumers are increasingly living digital lives where the PC is the center of the home. They require cutting-edge multimedia capabilities which allow them to enjoy and share their content online and across devices with unparalleled ease of use.”
Nero 9 – New and Enhanced Features
Fast, Easy, and Convenient User Interface
With Nero 9, the company responded to consumer requests for an enhanced, easy-to-use and convenient user interface. The widely used Nero StartSmart intuitive command center, now integrates new playback, ripping, burning, copying and backup functions with one-click tabs for quick and easy completion of digital tasks. In addition, Nero StartSmart now offers Autobackup, an automatic backup function accessed directly through Nero StartSmart one-click tabs. Consumers will also appreciate new file playback capabilities within Nero StartSmart for music, videos and photos, and ability to create playlists. Furthermore, Nero StartSmart now integrates Gracenote® music recognition service providing song and artist information for audio files.
Superior High Definition
Capture video from AVCHD camcorders and easily create stunning movies with 3D animated menu templates for a professional presentation. New tape-scan feature allows quick and easy previews and scene selections from digital (DV) or high-definition videos (HDV) for the seamless import of video into creative projects, saving time and hard drive space. Easily burn high definition projects with high definition menu templates to AVCHD Disc using standard recordable DVD media – save time and ensure quality with Nero’s SmartEncoding for AVCHD. In addition, Nero now offers Blu-ray Disc Authoring Plug-in online enabling high-definition menu authoring and burning of HD video to Blu-ray Disc, ensuring playback on Playstation® 3 and other Blu-ray Disc players.
Enhanced and Newly Designed Multimedia Player
Nero 9’s multimedia player, Nero ShowTime, now incorporates great usability with a new look and playback design as well as convenient docking and stand-by modes of both the browser window and playlists. Great new media and playlist handling will make users simply enjoy playback of their digital content. The best-of-breed playback options now include Gracenote® music services providing accurate song and artist information as well as album art, shuffle playback for playlist and audio CD tracks plus support for latest digital formats.
New Video Editing Options
Nero 9 provides highly enhanced yet easy to use video editing tools to allow for greater personalization of home videos and slideshows. The new Ad Spotter detects and removes commercials from a movie and joins the movie content pieces seamlessly together. The new Music Grabber feature identifies music clips in a movie or music video and automatically extracts the audio, to save as MP3 and add to playlist. The new Movie Wizard allows creativity with an easy-to-use library of templates including themes for special occasions like birthdays, holidays and weddings, plus soundtracks and special effects.
Enhanced Live TV Experience
Providing consumers with a great new TV experience for their PC, Nero Live is a new addition to Nero 9 for the viewing of high-quality live TV on the PC. As a stand-alone application or to enhance Windows Media Center, Nero Live makes it easy to watch live TV/HDTV, record TV shows, watch two channels at once with Picture-in-Picture capabilities, time shift for up to 60-minutes, and listen to DVB radio.
Autobackup and Data Protection
Nero listened to consumers and integrated even more convenient and easy tools to protect valuable memories, confidential data and safeguard against system crashes, natural disasters or even human error. The new Autobackup feature in Nero 9 makes it easy for consumers to backup digital entertainment content from their PCs including files, folders, drives, and even the entire system via a simple wizard interface that leads consumers through a scheduling process for backing up and saving content – offline or online. Also offered with Nero 9 is Nero BackItUp 4 which allows consumers to protect against a system crash or accidental loss of important data by providing easy disaster recovery and backup password protection for extra security. With Nero RescueAgent technology integrated into Nero 9, safely and securely recover data from damaged or scratched discs, hard drives, USB and flash sticks, and other memory devices.
Nero 9 is currently available worldwide with a suggested retail price of $99.99 USD and online at www.nero.com. The Blu-ray Disc Authoring Plug-in will be sold as a downloadable product at www.nero.com for $9.99. Current Nero consumers can upgrade to Nero 9 online at a special discounted price at www.nero.com.
Nero, the creator of liquid media technology, enables liquid content creation and distribution anytime, anywhere, and on any device. The company provides consumers with the freedom to simply enjoy their music, photos, and videos, regardless of hardware or file format, by taking a unique platform neutral, standards-based approach to solution development. More than 300 million units of Nero’s trusted software solutions are used in the home, on the go, and professionally. Nero also provides strategic partners with cutting-edge applications, codecs, tools, software development kits, and programming interfaces for use with a variety of the latest platforms and devices. Products are available globally through hardware manufacturers, international partners, retailers, and directly through the Nero Online Shop at www.nero.com.
Headquartered in Karlsbad, Germany, Nero maintains regional offices in: Karlsbad, Germany; Glendale, Calif., USA; Yokohama, Japan; and development centers in Karlsbad, Germany and Hangzhou, China.
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Nero® is a trademark of Nero AG and its subsidiaries. Any other product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.
© 2008 Nero. All rights reserved.