Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Quick Links

NAB 2012: Lightworks | Scott Simmons | ProVideoCoalition
Scott offers a few thoughts on Lightworks, the free NLE that's a little different:
I mentioned repeatedly to the Editshare guys that once a Mac version is ready we will see a lot more interest but they said they’ve seen over 250,000 downloads of the current Windows version. I think they are quite proud of that download number and Lightworks looks to be a pretty big part of the overall Editshare strategy going into the future. I’m not exactly sure what that strategy is but apparently someone at Editshare does since Lightworks lives on.

Sony FS700 Hands-On . . . & Where are the Power-Zoom Lenses? | Eric Reagan
| Photography Bay
A few thoughts on the NEX-FS700, though it's more of a first-look than a hands-on review:
The hand-grip is definitely beefed up from the FS100 for a much more solid feel – again, a needed improvement. Notably, there’s now a zoom rocker on the hand-grip, which led to a brief argument between me and Sony rep who tried to convince me that there were already E-mount lenses on the market that featured powered zoom motors. Well, there aren’t, but there most likely will be in the not-too-distant future.

NEX-FS700 Belagio Fountains at 240fps | YouTube
Another high-fps video from the Sony NEX-FS700:
I was lucky enough to to be able to borrow a pre production Sony NEX-FS700 at the NAB 2012 show. With only a very brief period to get some shots I decided to try out the slow motion function of the camera to shoot the fountains outside the Belagio Casino in Las Vegas.

Interview with Dan May, president of Blackmagic Design, US | SpliceVine
Blackmagic Design has branched out from I/O hardware into software and now cameras. Here's an interview with the US President about the company:
I’ve said this a number of times, it’s funny how much we have seen over these past few years – what was post-production, pre-production, broadcast vs consumer all of these lines have been completely blurred. And they’ve been blurred because of the internet, cost of goods, accessibility to information. These whole lines have been changed as to where, when you look at NAB 10 years ago and say it was a place for high end broadcast and post-production, it still is but there is now such a wide and diverse group of people.

Film vs. Digital: Do Labels Matter? | R.C. VARENAS | FilmSlateMagazine
Some thoughts on film and whether something shot on video can be called a film:
While I might be slightly more nostalgic and compassionate toward film, I see their point. The click-clacking of typewriters is a beautiful sound. But aren’t computers better? Sure, Superman has fewer changing rooms to choose from, but are you willing to give up your cell phone for a phone booth? Isn’t the microwave oven great? Hasn’t the remote control made life easier? Isn’t liposuction more convenient than exercise?

SpeedGrade | Adobe TV
Adobe offers a variety of tutorials on the new SpeedGrade application, including:
Introduction to SpeedGrade
Loading and Conforming Material in SpeedGrade CS6
Rendering With SpeedGrade CS6
Using Scene Change Detection in SpeedGrade CS6

10 Great Color Correction Tutorials for Final Cut Pro X | Danny Greer
| Premium Beat
A collection of links to tutorials on color correction in  Final Cut Pro X:
Color correction has gotten quite an upgrade in Final Cut Pro X, with significant improvements to the color grading interface and automatic color matching tools. The following video tutorials cover all aspects of the FCPX color correcting environment, addressing topics such as the FCPX color correction interface, workflow and advanced color effects.

ProVideo Coalition - Tiffen Digital Filters - NAB 2012 | Richard Harrington | Vimeo
Richard Harrington interviews Michael Cassara about Tiffen's digital filters for NLEs at NAB 2012. The package grew out of what was originally Digital Film Tools.

Canon EOS 5D Mark III – Firmware 1.1.2 Released | HD Cam Team
Canon releases a firmware update for the Canon 5D Mark III. No major changes, which include:
1. Supports a new accessory, GPS receiver GP-E2.
2. Fixes a phenomenon where a pink cast may develop over the image when the shutter is completely pressed with the camera’s power turned off (by the auto power off setting).
3. Fixes a phenomenon where the camera operation stops after one shot when shooting in High Dynamic Range (HDR) mode.

Why Aardman shot its latest movie on Canon DSLRs | Amy Davies | TechRadar
Fairly detailed interview about Aardman switching to DSLRs for movie making:
We do a lot of testing before we start the film itself so we can decide on an optimum setting for all of the cameras, so we will set up a common ISO speed, a common white balance, the setup of all the cameras will be identical at the beginning of the shoot, and the Canon cameras and the Canon sensors were incredibly consistent in that if you took any one camera into a given situation and took a shot, if you then removed it and substituted another camera, with the same lens, the shot would be identical.

TRUTH AND DOCS AT TRIBECA | Stewart Nusbaumer | Filmmaker
A look at three different documentaries:
Three documentaries that examine truth-telling in vastly different settings: a Mississippi community still struggling with its racist past, an Israeli family remaining numb in the post-Holocaust era, and the world’s most populated nation where bloggers maintain an insecure space. The truth is contested and obscured, pursued and denied, fought over and completely ignored. For the truth tellers there is great fear, no fear, and self-fear.

Peter Jackson is shooting The Hobbit in 3D at 48fps. A 10 minute preview was recently shown to exhibitors - and others - and provoked mixed reactions:

CinemaCon 2012: THE HOBBIT Underwhelms At 48 Frames Per Second
| Devin Faraci | Badass Digest
With those caveats out of the way, here's what The Hobbit looked like to me: a hi-def version of the 1970s I, Claudius. It is drenched in a TV-like - specifically 70s era BBC - video look. People on Twitter have asked if it has that soap opera look you get from badly calibrated TVs at Best Buy, and the answer is an emphatic YES.

The Hobbit ... Didn't Look So Good | Jim Vejvoda | IGN Movies
While 48fps may create a more realistic, "you are there" picture quality, it actually works against The Hobbit from the 10 minutes of footage we saw. This undeniable "reality" kept pulling me out of the movie rather than immersing me fully into its world as the Lord of the Rings films did; the very fantasy element, the artifice of it all (whether it's the wigs, fake beards or CG monsters) was plainly, at times painfully, evident.

Peter Jackson's 48fps Presentation Of 'The Hobbit' At CinemaCon Gets A Mixed Response | KEVIN JAGERNAUTH | IndieWire
A collection of comments from others, along with a warning not to jump to conclusions:
It's too early to determine the success or failure of this new "format" (for lack of a better term), but calling it a "mistake" (as some people are) based on 10 minutes of footage is premature at best. In fact, much of the reaction today is reminiscent of the same concerns that James Cameron's "Avatar" was met with in the months leading up to its release, that 3D wouldn't be the game changer that Fox was hoping for, and audiences wouldn't be impressed enough to make it a hit.

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