When the Digital Film Academy was founded, Avid was one of the few programs taught.
Now, years later and with a much larger course selection, things came full-circle when the DFA hosted the Pro Tools 11 ACI (Avid Certified Instructor) Re-Certification Webinar/Seminar. The event was presented by Avid’s Andy Cook and Jon Connolly.
I was fortunate to be a fly on the wall during the seminar, in a room with ten ACIs (in addition to the 20 attending online). Only certified ACIs are qualified to teach Avid courses at Avid Learning Partner schools, guaranteeing that only the most up-to-date and capable instructors are teaching ALP students.
“We’re very happy to be an ALP and very proud to have been chosen to host the event,” said Patrick DiRenna, the DFA’s founder and president. “I look forward to hosting more of their events in the future and offering Avid certified courses.”
Having Guy Mor as Director of Operations certainly puts the DFA a cut above other film schools when it comes to Avid training. Mor is the only Master Pro Tools instructor in the New York/New Jersey area, and he also holds a long list of other Avid certifications.
Mor insists that “the Avid certified curriculum is the best and most complete way to learn Pro Tools.” As a former working engineer in broadcast television, Mor was already very skilled with Avid. However, it’s only been since getting certified that he realized he had “holes in (his) knowledge, holes that were plugged up by this extensive curriculum.” He now teaches these courses at the highest level, and can work faster and more efficiently than ever before. He sees his students go through the same transformation all the time.
Beyond being a master instructor, Mor is also very active in the community of Avid Certified Instructors. He was recently asked to be a moderator on Avid’s list serve. It was partially due to Mor’s relationship with Andy Cook, one of the presenters, that the re-certification event was hosted by the DFA.
According to Mark Matthews, a dedicated ACI from St. Petersburg College attending the event, the value of the certification is growing as Avid’s approach becomes “more progressive.”
As discussed at the seminar, in order to be re-certified, ACIs need to be up-to-date on the changes that come with Pro Tools 11. The presenters reviewed not only PT 11’s new capabilities (for instance, the faster-than-real-time offline bounce feature, which has many audio engineers excited), but also the reasons behind the upgrades.
Most importantly, they addressed the move to a new plug-in format, AAX.
“We needed to start from scratch (with AAX) to be able to work in the 64-bit realm,” Connolly said. The main goal was to enable greater interoperability between native and DSP environments.
Some people wonder why DSP remains necessary, what with the power of native, but Connolly discussed how DSP offers the power to handle extremely large sessions. While it might no longer be necessary for everyone, there is still high demand for it as projects continue to get bigger and more complex.
It’s often been said that, no matter how polished a movie looks, if the sound isn’t up to par, it just isn’t going to be impressive. For that reason, every filmmaker should make it a priority to find out more about Avid courses at the DFA.
By Digital Film Academy Blog Manager Sara McDermott Jain