Dakin Ferris (DDancer(at)d-mambo.com) from Emeryville, California:

See review at: "Best Video Player for Salsa Videos (ReplayerStudio ROCKS!)


Just purchased the new software from Salsaville.com (Eric Freeman) and I have to say....it is da chit!!

As someone who learns best from videos, managing all the clips I take...and then either editing them or simply finding the parts I want....is a lot of effort that I would rather spend just dancing.

Enter ReplayerStudio.....

It allows me to bookmark just the parts of the clips I want to recall, add a descriptive index to them (creating a massive database of only exactly what I want to see)....and then when I do play them, I can select how I want to play them...whether by a certain number of frames per second, or by a number of seconds...I can loop them, rewind them (sortaspeak), and parse them any number ways.... Having previously purchased WinDVD and PowerDVD (among others), I can say that I have found nothing even close to this product on the market. It is absolutely the ultimate player for dancers and anyone else who wants or needs to dissect or digest video.

Anyway, I would be interested in anyone else's review. However, this is by far vastly superior than anything I have ever seen or used on a PC."

Gil Flores from San Mateo, California:

See review at: "Best Video Player for Salsa Videos (ReplayerStudio ROCKS!)
(Review appearing here was updated by the author.)

"ReplayerStudio - a great video review tool.

They only stipulation is that it works best on .MPEG1 rendered video. (They make that very clear on the website).

I took some DV (.AVI) files and rendered them to .mpeg1 as well as .wmv files rendered to .mpeg1 and both worked as promised by the product. I love it when things actually work as promised!

It is a very cool app built around Windows Media Player and gives media player the functionality that it SHOULD have - slow mo, fast mo, frame by frame, loops etc. AND easy to use these functions. I particularly like the step ahead/back function.

At $70 a little pricey, but videophiles will find it worth every penny."

Gerald Hemelmayr from Linz, AUSTRIA:

"ReplayerStudio is an absolutely MUST HAVE for every Salsa dancer who is used to learning new moves from videos. Everyone who tries to do this with other Media Players will run into the same problem -- how to find the exact position where a move starts to watch the move again various times until finally you get it. Among the many powerful features of ReplayerStudio, for me, the most important ones are -- easy navigation, jumping backward and forward (e.g. 1 second, 5 secs, 1 minute, etc. -- everything is fully customizable), setting bookmarks and even defining loops that ReplayerStudio will repeat automatically. Also very helpful: the fine adjustable slow-motion and fast-forward. And there are many more features that you will not find in any other Media Players. Once you get used to ReplayerStudio you will never want to be without it."

Link Wilson from Minneapolis, Minnesota:

"This is the ultimate dance video viewer for the beginner or the advanced dancer. The software is very intuitive and easy to use. I especially like the loop control which allows you to focus in on the most complex components of a move, allowing you to replay a tiny portion of a sequence until you get it right. On top of that the ability to slow the speed of the player down to focus in on hand holds and body position makes this a must for anyone who wants to master the art of dance. This tool has been very helpful in allowing me the ability to quickly focus in on the aspects of a move that have previously been most difficult. No more guess work and then the frustration of constant rewinding back to the beginning to watch the entire move over and over again. This frustration has been eliminated. No one but a dance master could have invented this tool."

Jason Spellberg from Boulder, Colorado:

"When Eric Freeman first told me of his intention to design a media player that could help dancers really study video, I wasn't surprised. In the six years that I've known Eric, I have witnessed his constant frustration with the lack of useful playback features offered by other media players. Also, before Eric became a full-time dance instructor, he worked for some company as a computer programmer. So I knew it was only a matter of time before Eric would apply his programming skills for a truly worthy cause: designing a tool that could help people become better salsa dancers!

ReplayerStudio is the product of Eric's phenomenal ingenuity. And, while I wasn't surprised that Eric took the initiative to design this program, I am simply blown away by the amount of time, effort and innovation he's put into it. Not only did Eric include all the powerful playback features he dreamed about having for all those years, he also designed a very nifty cataloging system that enables you to instantly bookmark and play specific scenes from any media file on your hard drive. You really have to use this system to fully appreciate how it can revolutionize the way you access and analyze your video footage.

In a dance video market that is completely saturated with great content, Eric has truly found a winning market niche by providing dancers with a powerful tool for analyzing all that content. Simply put, ReplayerStudio makes your dance video collection much more worth keeping!

But, even if you don't dance, you should still take a very close look at ReplayerStudio. The need to study and catalog digital video is by no means restricted to dancers. If you try this program out, you'll likely discover lots of ways that ReplayerStudio can help you get the most out of your video library, whatever that video library may be!"

Herb April from Chicago, Illinois:

(runs: Ronin Rhythms-Modern Physical Alchemy -- a website dedicted to "The Rhythmic Essence of Martial Arts")

"Eric has developed a piece of software that, in my humble opinion, every martial artist (dancer, drummer, musician, athlete, etc.) has to have.

If you are at all seriously interested in mastering the concepts, theories, and techniques of RONIN RHYTHMS you have to check out the incredible video learning tool that Eric Freeman offers on his "www.salsaville.com" website. The salsa dancing videos and dvds that Eric sells are superlative learning tools, but it is his ReplayerStudio software that you must own. To be brief, REPLAYER STUDIO software allows you analyze "any" video material in a way that removes any "mystery" about moves, techniques, etc. Just visit the site, read the info outline, and BUY the software! You won't be disappointed. REPLAYER STUDIO software transcends any single use (dance, martial arts, sports, etc.) in ways that will really make you love this tool. This is something that Bruce Lee would have paid anything to own and use."

Oliver Plohmann from Darmstadt, GERMANY:

"I compared ReplayerStudio to Windows Media Player, iTunes and Real Player. All those players are just made to play some piece of music or video from beginning to end. At best there is some additional feature to shuffle tracks. Eric's tool makes it easy to watch people dancing in slow motion. You can see very well exactly what they are doing with their feet and their whole body. Moves that were carried out with normal speed looked very good and fluent. When you watch the same scene in slow motion you realize that there are things even these skilled dancers could work on (sometimes too big foot steps, turning the body aside too much, during more complicated moves all of a sudden not all parts of the body enjoy the rhythm, but only the feet are walking). Going back and forth by a couple of seconds in the play is really easy. So you can study a specific scene with much ease as slow and as often as you want. If I watch myself dancing using this tool I'm pretty sure I can immediately spot several things I could improve on. With Eric's media player I can even see much more things now than before."

Fabio Boschetti (who runs SalsaIsGood) from Perth, AUSTRALIA:

"How do you prefer to spend most of your precious practice time?
  • learning a figure,
  • or continuously rewinding a DVD ???

When I started to dance salsa, a number of years ago, the main tools of the trade were a dance studio and a wooden floor. The most widely used teaching technique was ‘Look, the figure goes like this!’ and ‘You have to feel it!’ Then the salsa world discovered technology. Edie the Salsa Freak created the salsaweb, and some people started exploring a new media: the ‘salsa video’. Eric Freeman pioneered a new way to produce videos: quick, snappy explanations, a huge amount of material condensed into 60 minutes, and plenty of quality. For the first time, buying a video was a reasonable alternative to an expensive salsa course. Within a few years, the concept boomed and now salsa has an official literature: salsa videos from the best and the mediocre spread new salsa ideas over the world and record it for future generations of dancers.

In doing this, so far, the salsa world has borrowed technology developed for other purposes and tried to adapt it, often awkwardly, to its own need. Now, once again, Eric has taken a much needed step forward and given us a technology designed purposely for salsa: ReplayerStudio, a tool which allows you to store your favourite clips, loop your favourite passages, slow them down (at a speed of your choice!), bookmark them and even comment on them.

"What’s the big deal?" you may think, "There are hundreds of media players around with amazing fancy features"... The big deal is that the simple features crucial for dancers are not available in those advanced packages. "Well, I can still use my remote control", you may think.. That’s true.. but you could also still write down your friends’ telephone numbers on a piece of paper, as in the past, but you don’t! You store them on your mobile.. Technology is there to make things easier and faster. Do you prefer to spend most of your precious practice time learning a figure, or continuously rewinding a DVD albeit with your remote?

But there’s more to it.. ReplayerStudio is a new way to think about learning dance. It’s about incorporating a laptop into your tools of trade, and carrying with you your entire salsa literature whenever you want to practise or teach."

Luca Lando from Venice, ITALY:

"Ho acquistato il nuovo software da un paio di settimane e devo confermare che sono veramente soddisfatto. ReplayerStudio è uno strumento veramente unico nel suo genere, permette di catalogare e gestire qualsiasi video con estrema facilità. E' particolarmente indicato per chi come nel mio caso, avendo vari DVD didattici e video ripresi durante lezioni e stages ad un certo punto decide di poterli riorganizzare e consultare senza perdere tempo. Normalmente infatti è piu' il tempo che si perde a cercare la sequenza che ci interessa che non quello che passiamo effettivamente ad analizzarla. Con ReplayerStudio il materiale contenuto in ore di video una volta selezionato può essere riorganizzato e consultato in qualsiasi momento con estrema rapidità creando un indice personalizzato. Le varie sequenze catalogate possono essere riviste utilizzando una serie di utilissime funzioni che non sono presenti in programmi come Windows Media Player o PowerDVD e che consiglio di provare personalmente scaricando la versione in prova del programma".

Translated into English, it reads:

"I purchased the new software two weeks ago and I want to say that I'm really satisfied. ReplayerStudio is unique as it gives you the possibility to easily catalog and organize any video. It's especially indicated for all the people like me that have many instructional DVDs and videos filmed during lessons and workshops, and who want to organize and watch them without wasting time. Usually we spend more time looking for the moves that we want to learn than the time that we actually spend watching them. With ReplayerStudio, hours of videos once cataloged and organized can be viewed very quickly by creating your own index of moves. Once you organize your videos with ReplayerStudio you can watch them using all the unique features which you can't find in other software like Windows Media Player or PowerDVD. I suggest you try it personally by downloading the trial version of the program."

Dutch Vanpool from Miami, Florida:

"Yes, I can see that a dancer put this together: what a relief to finally be able to really LOOK at what's going on in those feet!"

Neal Watson from Christchurch, NEW ZEALAND
(the person who maintains the complete list of all salsa videos)
(Check out his page at http://salsavideoreviews.org)

"ReplayerStudio is the best video player on the market.

For decades we have been keeping notes on all the videos we have on paper and it took a lot of time to find the right notes for the right video.

With this new software we can make all our notes on the computer as we watch the video.

I agree with all the other testimonals from the other dance teachers. This is a great video player but it is so much more.

This is without a doubt the greatest software for anyone who uses videos to learn."

Chad Wilcox from Skydive Carolina, Chester, South Carolina

"ReplayerStudio is essential for any skydiving team wanting to improve their skills. The ability to review your dives with complete control from speed to single frame stepping surpasses every product in the market today. Combining these abilities with its cataloging system, you have a match made perfect for elevating your skills beyond any limits.

We got rid of our DVDs and video tapes and created a catalog of all our jumps, best exits, and best flat blocks. We also added notes to the formations in the catalog to let us know what each position should be doing and what we need to improve the next time we encounter the point. Each member on the team reviews the moves over and over until it is imprinted in their memory! We watch the videos in extremely slow detail to catch movements we never noticed before. Once we have the detailed moves memorized, we watch the dives at 1.2x to see the speed we should try to achieve.

Our master catalog allows us to take our jumps with us to competitions and engineer the competition jumps out of our practice jumps.

Eric has done a fantastic job with this software. It's the best video review system I have ever used. Every skydiving team should have this software.

... Also ... I really like your program and I can’t figure out for the life of me why this program is not with every sports team using video to review.

Edie "The Salsa Freak" from Los Angeles, California:

See review at: Eric Freeman Invented a Video Player on STEROIDS!!
A Brand New Way to Review ANY Recorded Footage!!!


You can now learn Dance Moves better and faster without having to rewind the tape or DVD! Catalog your moves, and find them in less than a second! Excellent for creating routines, studying intricate moves, and combining all your hundreds of favorite moves from different dancers, videos, and DVDs!!

"ReplayerStudio gives us the competitive edge... I can’t figure out for the life of me why this program is not with every sports team using video to review." - United States Sky Diving Team Captain

Saying "ReplayerStudio is like a DVD player", ... is like saying "MS Word is like a typewriter." - MAJOR DIFFERENCE HERE!!!

Having previously purchased WinDVD and PowerDVD (among others), I can say that I have found nothing even close to this product on the market. It is absolutely the ultimate player for dancers and anyone else who wants or needs to dissect or digest video. - Salsero

Eric "El Cubanito" Freeman has been a good friend of mine since I started Salsa dancing. Back in '99, we co-produced the "Cool Moves Revealed" salsa dance video, which gained a worldwide audience and helped launch our respective video-making careers.

Since then, Eric has put out 10 more DVD's, and I've produced countless more. Every time we get together I'm always anxious to ask Eric what his latest video project is. But the last time we talked, he said, "actually, Edie, I'm not working on a video right now, I've got something even better." "Better?" I asked. "What are you talking about?" "ReplayerStudio -- it's a software program I created that will dramatically improve your ability to learn from all the video you've already collected ..." Well, I knew Eric used to be a full-time computer programmer, but thought he did nothing but dance and teach salsa for the last several years. So his response caught my curiosity. I downloaded a copy of his program, and began checking it out ...

Previously, I had used a VCR, then a DVD player, and occasionally a computer media player, such as Windows Media Player, to watch dance videos. I would study dance by watching old swing, ballroom, and tango videos. Each time I saw a move I wanted to learn, I'd rewind my tape, and play it over again -- and again, and again. There were a couple of problems, though.

In the past, when I used to hit the rewind button I always had a hard time finding the beginning of the move I wanted to replay.

Then I couldn't get the move to play at the appropriate speed. I needed a slower playback speed, but the VCRs and DVD players I used offered only "too slow" or just regular speed. It was frustrating, but I'd stick with it and eventually learn the move, mostly because I had no other option. Oh, and the other big problem -- I'd watch a hour-long video straight through with no dance partner within reach. I'd see tons of cool moves and styling that I'd want to learn. Then, when a dance partner was around, I'd pop the tape or DVD back in, and then try to find all those moves again.

By the time I managed to locate these cool moves, my dance partner was out cold snoozing on the couch!

After checking out Eric's program, I was SHOCKED AND AMAZED that his software solved ALL those problems.

Eric has truly created an amazing system for me to not only study all that dance footage I've collected over the years, but to even catalog it as well! You're going to have to check this program out for yourself, because there's not enough room in this article to describe all the cool features it offers. But believe me when I say that the old annoyance of having to find the beginning of a dance move using a clumsy rewind button is gone! And the problems with going back and finding the really interesting parts of an hour-long video tape I've already watched? Out the window!

This program does a lot, but here's what it does that will really make my salsa dancing life easier:

1. There is a button that allows you to jump back exactly three seconds (or two or four or whatever you want -- you can set it). Now, I just hit that button and I'm instantly seeing the move start over again. This does not exist on a DVD player, or even on Windows Media Player. In fact, on Windows Media Player, trying to jump back to the beginning of a move in a long video clip is so complicated it's not even worth the trouble!

2. If I really want to study a move, then I just hit a couple of buttons and Eric's program automatically remembers the start time and end time of the move. Then I can use the program's nifty "loop mode," which makes just that section of the video clip I want to learn play over and over again! The software also has frame-by-frame, and slow motion at speeds like 50%, 60%, 70%, etc. of regular speed. Sometimes I can't follow a move at full speed, I just need it slowed down a little bit -- but not so much that the flow of the move is lost. ReplayerStudio allows me to set playback to 80% of full speed. The dancers still appear with their natural flow, but the action is slowed down just enough so my brain can keep up with what they're doing.

Every dancer who’s played with this program extensively never goes back to using a DVD player, Windows Media Player or any other computer media player -- those programs were designed to watch movies not dance clips.

3. Here's the best part: Say my dance partner isn't around and instead I want to come back and learn the moves later. Now, I no longer have to remember or even write down where in the video the move is.

Instead, I just take that loop I've set and press this button called "add bookmark", type in a name for the move, and the program marks the move in a special built-in database which Eric calls a "video catalog." What this means is that I can watch an entire dance video, from start to finish, telling the program to remember and label any clip I want. I never have to fumble with finding a 15-second clip in an hour-long video again! Then, when I've got my man handy, I just open the video catalog I made previously, and play any move I want at the press of a button.

Software media players don't allow you do these things. Eric seems to have created something unique and it's ideally suited for helping me learn new dance moves. The only catch is that Eric's software doesn't read DVD's directly. It works best with digitally encoded video and audio files. So if you have a DVD, you'll have to rip the video and audio to your hard-drive first. But uploading video you've recorded with your own camera works great, and the program works well with most video clips downloaded from the Internet as well.

Another feature that's really beneficial is the program's "BeatCounter." This feature alone makes ReplayerStudio worth purchasing , and may finally be the solution for helping my students who have trouble hearing the beat in salsa music. The "BeatCounter" allows you to play a song, any song, and tap in the beat manually as it plays. ReplayerStudio remembers all of your keystrokes, and the next time you play the video you can make it mark the count both by "beeping" and by displaying on the screen! There are lots of options, but what I do is just play the song, tap a key "on 1" and "on 5," and then tell the software to play back all eight beats -- or any combination of them. Personally, I like setting it to "123-567-," which matches the beats when students should be stepping to the music. At the moment, Eric also offers a best-hits salsa CD with all the beats already programmed in. You can order this CD from him and he'll send it to you, along with the BeatCounter feature pre-programmed to display the count for all the songs, both audibly and numerically. If my students take this home and really listen to it, I expect that they'd rapidly improve their ability to dance on-beat!

You can tap out the beat for video as well. Then, when playing back the video, the count appears. This may not sound like such a big deal, but remember that most of the time people learn dance moves at slow speed! This Beat Counter feature actually remembers the beat and displays it as you advance the video frame-by-frame. Without this feature, I'm always guessing what beat the dancers are on. With it, there's no need for guesswork. And finally there's one other really nice feature Eric included -- something that I never thought would be possible and that may have choreographers salivating -- the ability to advance or rewind through a move or routine beat-by-beat or measure-by-measure!

Just imagine -- you can now instantly back up to the exact beginning of a move by pressing the "back measure" button a few times, and, you can step forward through a combination exactly one beat at a time by pressing the "forward beat" button repeatedly.

REPLAYERSTUDIO revolutionizes the way you view and analyze your DVDs, films, and old videos!!!