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Software Review of:
MusioStudio
1.0b

 

William Morgan is a self-employed locksmith living in Kerrville, Tx. He has been a member of the Alamo PC Organization since 1995.

From the September, 2002 issue of PC Alamode Magazine

Warning: This is a beta version. The beta version is not the final product, and this software needs to be finished. Hopefully the final version will not have all the problems I had with this software. MusioStudio is a product of Imusicsoft, which is in Korea. Since, they do not have their English pages at www.imusicsoft.com, and I do not read Korean, I cannot tell you much about Imusicsoft.
 
The first major problem I have is with the name. It should be MusicVideoStudio. I picked this program to review thinking it was a music program.  I have used Cakewalk’s ProAudio and Score Writer and I thought this program was similar.  Fact is, now that I think about it, VideoMusicStudio would  be an even better name.

The second major problem I have is with the examples. One of the music videos is called Hotdog.  Every line of this sonic event (from my electronic music class, all music is a sonic event, but not all sonic events are music-events when they try to be) begins with “f***” with a few #!&# thrown into the mix for about four minutes.  Now, since my mother comes into my shop to help — well I’m glad I’m not thirty years younger. 

The next major problem I have is with the help. There is almost none. The only way I was able to figure how to work the program two minutes faster that a monkey was that I least knew how to use a keyboard. About the only help available were the menu functions. I guess I was supposed to know what the video control and effect functions do.

The last major problem I have — this program is not beta but alpha code. Beta is suppose to have a full functionally, and beta testing is to find out what causes bugs. The documentation that comes with program plainly states that the microphone input does not work. Since, I was not able to load a wave file into the program, I have a feeling that the audio functions have not been written. This is common with alpha code, not beta code.

The system requirements of the program are steep. It requires a PII class processor; 32MB of RAM, a sound card, and the video card must have 3D acceleration support with 8MB of video RAM.  The display for the program is set at 1024 by 768 pixels. Since, I had to work on my taxes during my review of the program and I use 800 by 600 pixels on my display, I always had to reset the display because of the small size of my desktop.  The program options call for a microphone and digital camera. Since the microphone input did not work, I didn’t even try the digital camera. 

The program did load onto my computer without any problems.  To review this or any other program, I like to do a project — not just work the controls. I was going to set astrophotos to music, but here is where problems began to show up. I was going to use some Bach music. I bought a Bach CD and to make sure I got clean audio, I bought a CD player to go onto the input of the computer.  I input the CD into my Cakewalk ProAudio, but found out that Cakewalk did not store audio files as wave files.   I then went to Microsoft’s Sound recorder (it also has some bugs, but I am not reviewing that program) to make a wave file. The wave file would play both in Media Player and Real Player. I could not get it to load into MusioStudio.  So, I took one of the example songs, cut all the photos and effects out of it, and then made my video.

Screen CaptureHere is the program interface. At the top is the menu. It is not of much use; except that it does have what little help the program has for the user. Going to about mid-way down is the file function buttons. New is used to start a new music video, Load is used to continue editing a work in progress, Save is used to store a work in progress, AVI renders a work in progress into a .avi file for playback with a media player, and Song which doesn’t work (it’s to chose a .wav file). Below the function buttons are two icons for digital camera and mike input, which the program states doesn’t work.  Moving to right and up is the video viewer, which display the work in progress.  Below the viewer are the playback controls, which act like standard media player controls. At the middle bottom of the interface is the editing display. It has five tracks that tell the program what effects and photos to display at what time in the song. 

There are three small icons for copy, paste, and erase above and to the right of the editing display. Moving to the top and to far right is the last column of functions. The very top are the window functions move to program bar, and close program. Next are two unlabeled buttons, sort of an A/B switch. The A switch chooses an effect, and the B switch chooses how that effect will behave during playback of the video.  Coming down further is a menu of buttons. These buttons are effects, photos, and animations that are used in the editing. What the buttons display, is chosen by the editing function knob below menu of buttons. There are six editing functions on the knob, such as text, music (which doesn’t work), photos, effects and animations. 

This program needs more work before it comes to market. The first thing is to get their Website English pages working. Next, is to write some better help, a tutorial would be nice. The audio functions need to be coded, and I would like to see MIDI supported, since I like to compose my own music. And finally, I would also like to see mpeg video added to the media playback file types. I did like the final results of the program, and think this could be a great program if only the programmers finish it.


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