Created by NewTek, the Video Toaster was a software and hardware based tool used for video editing and debuted on the Commodore Amiga 2000 PC in 1990 as an add-on card. It’s ability to work with standard definition video made it a revolutionary hit in television and film production, earning a Technical Achievement Emmy in 1993.
The component utilized an expansion slot on the Amiga, providing BNC connectors for input and output, and was also notable for including the editing software LightWave 3D, which became so popular it was spun off as a separate product.
The Toaster would eventually be marketed as a complete editing system, including the Amiga PC, the add on card, and peripheral hardware. The substantial difference in cost set it apart from competing products, and it became widely used within the industry by the mid 1990s.
In 1993, NewTek delved into high performance with the Video Toaster Screamer, an extension by Deskstation Technology featuring four motherboards. Intended to increase the rendering speed of LightWave animation, it was by all accounts forty times faster than the Amiga 4000. Only a handful of test units were built before NewTek shifted back to the Flyer design and Deskstation built a smaller model called the Raptor.
Later incarnations would bring the Toaster Flyer, a new breed that brought more advanced features and hard drive storage. NewTek then spun off another product from the technology called TriCaster. In 2004, the original Amiga Toaster source code was made public as development continued on the Windows platform. NewTek announced Video Toaster’s discontinuation in 2010, and the last version of TriCaster released in 2012 signaled the end of it’s source code.