Macworld (USA) - - Mac User - BY J.R. BOOKWALTER

With the re­lease of Toast 17 Pro ( go. mac­; as well as Dvd-only sib­ling Toast 17 Ti­ta­nium, go.mac­world. com/t17t), Roxio is send­ing a clear mes­sage that op­ti­cal me­dia is here to stay. Fol­low­ing last year’s purely cos­metic over­haul which added a dark UI, the lat­est ver­sion sports an un­der-the-hood tune-up. The ap­pli­ca­tion is fi­nally 64-bit, in time for the re­lease of macos Mo­jave this fall, the last macos to sup­port 32-bit apps. That means Toast will con­tinue work­ing when macos goes 64-bit–only, but users won’t

have to wait that long to reap the ben­e­fits.

Aside from ini­tial post-in­stal­la­tion prob­lems with the ap­pli­ca­tion re­fus­ing to launch af­ter the first time, Toast 17 Ti­ta­nium is the snap­pi­est it’s ever been. I’m not sure if my is­sue was caused by the new, sleeker in­ter­net-based in­stal­la­tion (which down­loads con­tent as needed, rather than as a stand-alone in­staller), but I re­solved the prob­lem by first purg­ing ev­ery­thing re­lated to Toast—in­clud­ing pref­er­ence and sup­port files—then re­in­stalling the lat­est ver­sion.

Toast 17 ad­dresses a long-stand­ing an­noy­ance I’ve had across mul­ti­ple ver­sions of the ap­pli­ca­tion when switch­ing to the Video tab from other modes (Data, Au­dio, Copy, or Con­vert). I’m not sure if Roxio’s en­gi­neers got tired of me bring­ing it up in re­views or the bug was fi­nally squashed in the move to 64-bit, but there’s no longer any lag or spin­ning beach ball when click­ing be­tween tabs.

Aside from the afore­men­tioned fresh coat of paint, the core Toast ap­pli­ca­tion is oth­er­wise largely the same as it’s been for years. That’s not nec­es­sar­ily a bad thing, although I’d love to see at least the Pro ver­sion adopt the same kind of com­pre­hen­sive Blu-ray and Dvd-au­thor­ing tools found in Adobe En­core, which was dis­con­tin­ued in 2012. It’s worth not­ing that Blu-ray sup­port is no longer ac­ti­vated when in­stalling the Pro ver­sion; the op­tion is now tucked away in the Help menu in­stead.


Over the last sev­eral re­leases, Roxio

hedged its op­ti­cal me­dia in­vest­ment by bundling Toast with a suite of like-minded cre­ative soft­ware. Some ad­di­tions make sense, like MYDVD (in­tro­duced in Toast 14), which sup­ports slightly more ad­vanced disc-au­thor­ing op­tions like cus­tom menus and chap­ter stops. Oth­ers like photo-cen­tric Painter Essen­tials 6, Corel After­shot 3, and Fo­tomagico 5 help jus­tify the cost of the bundle, but most users will al­ready own sim­i­lar (or su­pe­rior) tools for such tasks.

Af­ter adding Mul­ti­cam Cap­ture to the Toast 16 lineup, Roxio has gone a step fur­ther in this ver­sion, beef­ing up the soft­ware with edit­ing ca­pa­bil­i­ties as well in both the Ti­ta­nium and Pro ver­sions. The newly chris­tened Mul­ti­cam Cap­ture and Edit­ing makes it a snap to cre­ate training videos and other pre­sen­ta­tions for post­ing on Youtube or else­where.

The stand-alone app al­lows users to record from up to four sources at once, in­clud­ing the Face­time HD Cam­era, your Mac dis­play, and other at­tached au­dio or video hard­ware, which are au­to­mat­i­cally en­abled by de­fault.

Mul­ti­cam is easy to set up and use, with fa­mil­iar Source and Pre­view win­dows at the top, mul­ti­cam and PIP in the cen­ter, and time­line across the bot­tom. There’s even a built-in ti­tle maker and mul­ti­track pic­ture-in-pic­ture; users can switch

be­tween sources on the fly by press­ing the num­ber keys that cor­re­spond to each.

In ad­di­tion to live sources,

Mul­ti­cam also im­ports image, video, and au­dio files to use as part of a pre­sen­ta­tion, and the app does an ad­mirable job of help­ing get this me­dia synced up along­side ev­ery­thing else. I was dis­ap­pointed to discover how lim­ited the app’s postrecord­ing skills are—you can’t just record four sources then edit be­tween them, this is re­ally de­signed for live record­ings or adding sources one at a time.

As with any new re­lease, there are a few bugs that need to be squashed. In the case of Mul­ti­cam Cap­ture and Edit­ing, I was able to con­sis­tently cause the app to crash and log out of my user ac­count by delet­ing ei­ther source screen from my dual-mon­i­tor setup. That meant we­b­cams can’t be used as one of the first two sources. Toast 17 also crashes when us­ing NON-ASCII char­ac­ters in a file­name, some­times dur­ing a disc burn.


There’s not a whole lot new, but own­ers of pre­vi­ous ver­sions will need to up­grade ahead of next year’s macos up­date any­way, so there’s no rea­son not to reap the re­wards of a 64-bit ap­pli­ca­tion right now and get a de­cent soft­ware bundle thrown in as a bonus. ■

The stream­lined Toast 17 in­staller now down­loads as a smaller file, then grabs re­main­ing con­tent from the in­ter­net as in­stal­la­tion takes place.

With a darker, more-re­spon­sive user in­ter­face, and no more us­abil­ity bugs, Toast 17 Pro makes the ven­er­a­ble disc-au­thor­ing soft­ware ready for macos Mo­jave and be­yond.

New in Toast 17, cap­ture and edit video from you Mac, we­b­cams, and other sources while record­ing.

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