Posted on November 21st, 2010 No comments
From the reaction to the two part “Grading The Graders” series, it was a topic that needed to be covered. The differences between the professional systems are not always clear, which is the reason I wrote the articles in the first place. I did want to present the systems in a quasi-comparative way, in which I wasn’t really trying to point out how each has changed over the years as much as I was trying to point out the specific strengths and weaknesses of each in relation to the others. However, I got some very valuable feedback, so I thought I’d address it here rather than in private emails to each of the respondents.
Posted on November 12th, 2010 12 comments
In reviewing Part 1 of this article, I did notice that I left out one of the more important “pros” of the Baselight system, and that is its directly integrated support for the Truelight color management system. Truelight, like Baselight, is a Filmlight product, and Baselight is designed around the use of that technology for all color management functions, a great advantage. Now…..
Continuing right along where we left off…..
Posted on October 31st, 2010 8 comments
There seems to be a lot of talk these days about color grading, and a lot of it seems to revolve around what system represents the best solution given a particular set of circumstances. In a lot of these discussions, there seems to be a lot of attention paid to using general purpose platforms, such as nonlinear editors like Final Cut, Avid Media Composer, and Premiere Pro, for this purpose, or using software written for the purpose of file format conversion, like Red’s Redcine-X, for final creative color grading. And while for some this may present a very inexpensive (i.e., essentially free) solution on certain personal projects, in the professional world it is generally not practical or desirable. And it is not pricing that determines these things, rather, it is a combination of factors that together fulfill the practical needs of a professional colorist. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on May 16th, 2010 4 comments
Due to my work schedule, I did not attend the NAB convention in Las Vegas this year. Which, as it turns out, is a pity, because it was probably one of the most interesting gatherings in quite some time. Lots of interesting announcements on various fronts, involving some of the more significant players in our business, including Arri (with the Alexa camera line), Aaton (showing the proposed digital back for the Penelope camera), Assimilate (showing a new version of Assimilate Scratch working with Arri RAW files in real time), Filmlight (some very interesting new things coming, including integrated Red Rocket support, and support for Sony’s new software version of the SR codec, allowing for some very efficient file based workflow enhancements), and Avid (Media Composer 5, one of the most significant upgrades of that software in years). And I’ll be writing about all of these things in time. But perhaps the most significant – and potentially disruptive – announcements came from Blackmagic Design regarding their newly acquired DaVinci product line. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on February 14th, 2010 No comments
Yesterday, I attended the Red Day presentation done at Ren-Mar Studios (oops…. I meant Red Studios Hollywood – old habits die hard in this town..). Saw a lot of familiar faces, and met a lot of new ones. I especially enjoyed seeing Assimilate’s use of dual Red Rocket cards to provide live playout of stereoscopic Red material with full debayering in real time. That alone has a lot of potential that I hope to explore.
This morning, a discussion on the CML centered around things Red (and possibly other companies) might be able to do that would be truly revolutionary and useful. It seems to many that most of the talk involving new digital cameras centers around things like improved dynamic range and resolution – important things to be sure, but ones that are really incremental improvements, not revolutionary changes. To be revolutionary, something has to be presented that accomplishes something that cannot currently be accomplished, or at least accomplishes it in a new way that changes the way one looks at the problem. It is very helpful if that change is also useful, in terms of either making a task more efficient, or eliminating costs associated with doing things using the current methods. I’ve got some things to suggest that I think might be revolutionary and useful. All relate to characteristics of the current Red systems that are often criticized, such as its use of a proprietary file and compression format, the need to supply personnel and systems for backing up files at the time of production, the complications involved in maintaining a consistent color path for dailies, the need to constantly transcode camera files, and the lack of a proper archival element. Here are some of them:
Posted on January 2nd, 2010 3 comments
This is the time when you see a lot of reviews of what’s transpired over the last year, but I’m not going to do that. For one thing, 2009 really sucked on almost every level, so why rehash it? But more importantly, I like to look to the future and not dwell on the past. And the future will be, at the very least, well, interesting. And not necessarily in the ways you might expect. So here are some personal prognostications for your profound perusal. And please don’t hold me to any of them – they’re all based on personal opinion with no basis whatsoever in actual fact. That said…