Blackmagic Design Press Conference
I thought I would mention it here, in case any of the "or not" or "FCPX + Resolve" crowd was interested. ☺
Scheduled for Mar 3, 2017
Please join us this Thursday, March 2nd 12.00pm PST for a press conference showing our latest camera and post production technology!
Los Angeles 12:00 pm PST Thursday 2nd March 2017
New York 3:00 pm EST Thursday 2nd March 2017
London 8:00 pm GMT Thursday 2nd March 2017
Tokyo 5:00 am JST Friday 3rd March 2017
Sydney 7:00 am AEDT Friday 3rd March 2017
Two new DV Resolve panels - Micro $995, Mini $2,995. Require DVR 12.5.5. Available today. Also new URSA Mini Pro camera.
Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
I was just live-tweeting it, and there's a ton of great info there if I say so myself. LOL https://twitter.com/CreativeCOW
I'm going to be writing some things up in detail, but a few things jumped out at me.
"More people are using Resolve to edit than to do color correction." If Grant Petty says it, I believe it, but I thought that this would be a fun soundbite to throw to you sharks. 😎
Pics from the YT feed, so kind of gnarly for now:
Micro Panel, USB-C powered, backlit, $995.
Mini Panel, designed especially for people who bounce back and forth between editing and grading. Upper buttons loaded with options, macros, etc. Easily portable, rack width (sez me: flypack!!!), $2995.
Back: power from mains, battery AND PoE.
The thing that really jumps out at me about this is that the emphasis is on a combination of power and subtlety. Grant observed that new graders tend to jump on the most obvious features, and try to make the footage look like it has been graded. LOL Guilty, your honor. The buttons provide fast access to features that are less obvious in the software UI (which has always had an awareness of what's built into the hardware of course), with knobs that provide both speed and precision not available any other way. "The knobs will transform creativity for a lot of people" he says. Anybody who's used a panel will agree.
Also noting: just as they have with the OG panel, they chose to keep the price high enough to deliver the quality that the world's bests colorists have demanded over all these years, and this is what it took. As he put it another way, cheaper panels are designed to be cheap, rather than primarily to solve workflow problems. We came at this workflow first, says Grant, and, sez ME, I think they more than delivered on price. I'm very impressed.
Even more impressed by the new Ursa Mini Pro.
Grant observed that the whole point of their cameras is that they felt that more people could benefit from advanced color grading -- hence making DaVinci Resolve software only and cheap OR FREE -- but cameras in similar price points had neither the res or color depth to provide images worth grading.
FASCINATING idea. They created cameras to affordably feed an affordable Resolve!!!!
Also fascinating to me: this is a modular 3-in-1 camera (digital cinema, good ol' broadcast video, TV studio), with high-res guts to do anything you need. Need 60fps 4.6K RAW, 15 stops? Done. Need tally and talkback for TV studio installation? Done. Cooke digital cinema anamorphic lens data feed? Broadcast camera data feed? Done and Done. It's INSANE the range of options.
My favorite single feature is the interchangeable lens mounts. They're simple enough to swap out (Torx wrench, a few screws) that Grant actually did it in the demo, with a few self-deprecating jokes about his tendency to injure himself. Standard with EF, with optional PL and B4, Nikon coming.
Other accessories similarly reasonably priced -- $350 shoulder mount, $1795 studio viewfinder, etc.
Especially mind-boggling to me: $5995, NOW SHIPPING
More to come....
Sez Grant, "We just really enjoy making new products." A genuine LOL moment from me.
btw, how's THIS for another way that Blackmagic is changing the game? World class headline news, direct to you, no waiting in line at NAB.
AND changing Blackmagic's game by Now Shipping. 😁
Great write-up, thanks, Tim.
It was a really exciting presentation with so much good stuff to absorb.
Genuinely inspiring. And indeed thought-provoking.
I found the Resolve for Linux news interesting. Now a software download, without the need to buy a turnkey system. You do have to get the paid Studio version, but it runs with CentOS and Red Hat. I've played a tiny bit with CentOS (the QNAP server uses it) and it's relatively user friendly. A bit like a streamlined Windows UI. So, hot-rodded, gamer PCs and a full-fledged editor/color corrector.
Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Unless my eyes decieve me the free version (not a typo) of Resolve is now available for Linux.
No need to order that Enterprise bridge version of a panel. Was pleasantly surprised by the news! Always happy to hear from Uncle Timmy! 😎
Thanks for the kind words...but that was just a summary of my tweets, not my summary of the actual presentation. LOL That's coming soon. I'm working on it tonight, but we'll see if I can get it posted tonight or if it'll wait until tomorrow...but soon! And thanks!
I'll be honest, I wasn't paying as much attention to software feature advances as I was to the rest, though. The hardware blew me away, both in features and price. I'm really looking to getting my hands on it, though. I think a lot of people who haven't run their fingers across DaVinci's balls don't know how smooth and responsive they feel.
So, the combination of those prices with the promise of that solidity and finesse is highly intriguing to me. I love Grant's point that some of DaVinci's most refined features had always been designed to be accessed via the control surface, and used emotionally as much as anything else, without stopping the playback and without taking your eyes off the screen. Powerful stuff.
Beyond the basics, you guys are right. This is THOUGHT-PROVOKING stuff. Blackmagic are not just releasing products. They're trying to change the game, every time. And generally, apparently, succeeding!
I already noted one of the other things that most caught my ear, Grant's statement that more people are using Resolve to edit than to grade. On one hand, surely true. There are more editors than graders, right? Of course, it's also conceivable to me that they simply HEAR from more editors. The grading toolset is mature, and most longtime colorists are pretty chill. 😎 Kind of a job requirement.
Unlike editors. LOL The list of requests is long, adamant, and LOUD, and the number of people wanting to see this stuff in action NOW is obviously long. Not much chill in these parts. LOL
I know that almost all of you have it least taken Resolve for a spin. Any of you using it as an NLE for any heavy lifting?
With its quirks I prefer FCPX for editing. The ability to store custom Motion generators in a library to share with others or for archiving is a pretty big deal. Now that a free version of Resolve is availabke for Linux opens up more opportunities. I thought this might happen as a free version of Fusion was made available a few months ago. Those new panels look gorgeous and I can't wait to try one out much less touch those controls. Kudos to that entire team!
[Tim Wilson] " Any of you using it as an NLE for any heavy lifting?"
Yes, I don't know how heavy my lifting is, given that I'm a simple cuts-and-dissolves kind of editor, but I've been using Resolve as my primary NLE since version 11. That version was not stable enough but I used it anyway because of why I use Resolve in the first place.
Which is that I love to grade while I edit. For me almost everything about film is about connecting emotion to information, and as Grant said more than once in the press conference, color is emotional. Just as I incorporate music very early in the editing process, so I want to see what my color is doing, or can do, early on. (I've been using some system of colour management with enthusiasm and, I hope, increasing skill for about 14 years now.)
I'm happy to cut strictly factual sequences without messing around with the color (or music), but if a sequence is strictly factual it's not using all the power that film brings to communication. And I want that power to be part of my palette from the start.
It is possible that my need to see and hear these things early on is simply a failure of imagination, that maybe I can't tell, at least as well as others can, how it's going to feel when that stuff is all done. But if that's the case then using Resolve is helping me out with a talent I may lack, so it's doubly important to me.
I edited our most recent one-hour natural-history film, "Call of the Baby Beluga," broadcast on CBC, with Resolve, then did what Resolve let me do seamlessly -- had a more experienced colorist take it for a thorough polish. Although he had a different creative work flow, so started over with a grade in many cases rather than using my preliminary work, Resolve let him use versions to do that, so he could always take a look at the grade I had in mind to see where we were going. I was very happy with the way it turned out.
During that work, I was able to take the 1 TB SSD on which the film lived back to my suite to fix issues with bad clips or rough sequences overnight without juggling between NLEs, then I would just hand the SSD back to the colorist to continue the session. All this back and forth understandably worried the Post supervisor a bit, because it was a different work flow, but there were backups all through, with the underlying footage stored in several places, and it worked well.
After that we delivered to CBC, doing a final finish of a rendered clip in Premiere, which was preferred by the post house. But then I was able to go back into Resolve in our own suite and do a complete re-edit for an international version ten minutes longer, which I successfully finished without leaving Resolve. We never baked anything in except effects done externally, and I had all the grades still in Resolve so I was able to match things up in the new footage pretty well.
Bear in mind, almost the whole thing was just cuts and a few dissolves, probably only 5 basic composites done in Resolve, almost all of the few effects and animations created and rendered in either FCP X or After Effects, some by other people. So it was not effects-type heavy lifting, if that's what you meant, Tim.
Overall, once the program got into version 12 and most of the stability issues were gone, it has been a delight to work with. I think it's a contender now as an NLE that is a really easy move from FCP 7, and being able to easily render out sequences and rough cuts in which color differences, exposure issues, and so on are not distractions is a huge advantage.
Almost everyone I've worked with in this business always says "We're used to seeing rough-cuts so don't worry," then someone comes back and says "We're worried about the different color casts of those three cameras you used." So even if I just make those distractions go away by using the color page as I go along, it's worth it.
Yes, I know, I could do pretty much the same thing in any good NLE these days, so it's not necessary to use Resolve. But since I want grading, not just color correction, and Resolve is definitely where the film is finally going, so why not start it there. Since I know how to use the tools pretty well myself so I can set up a grade or even finish it in many cases, the ability to edit and grade seamlessly is wonderful. And being able to go back in without making round-trips to do a complete re-edit is great.
Plus, finally, I flat-out enjoy editing in Resolve. First, it was very easy to move a lot of instincts and muscle memory from FCP 7. Second, though I have enough knowledge of other NLEs to work in FCP X, Premiere and, with a day or two's refresher, in Avid, I just have more fun with Resolve. Is it because I'm partly a colorist at heart and completely love switching to that page and spinning the wheels? I mean, I can't wait to get my hands on that Mini panel and spin the pivot knob. Maybe that's it.
Basically, as an NLE, Resolve feels natural and straightforward, and it gets the job done.
Yes, Mike, thanks! What a great story! Exactly what I was looking for.
To clarify for anyone else who'd like to chime in, by "using Resolve for heavy lifting as an NLE" I just meant as their primary NLE, whether for one project, or overall.
[Mike Parfit] "as Grant said more than once in the press conference, color is emotional. Just as I incorporate music very early in the editing process, so I want to see what my color is doing, or can do, early on."
I couldn't agree more with this. Although I haven't really edited since the turn of the century, you describe my style to a T. Most of what I did was science and nature magazine stuff, so there was a heavy emphasis on facts (back when people cared about ANY of those things, much less ALL of them 😎), but I always went straight for the emotional beats.
I did most of my own shooting, so I always had my cameras tuned to within an inch of their lives, and I placed tremendous effort into the most classical sense of "framing"and composing even the most prosaic shots, but I still couldn't imagine a single final shot in post without multiple masks for adjusting color, focus, etc. For me at the time, it was first After Effects, then later, because I could do it faster in my NLE I turned to Boris FX for the majority of it, saving AE for my mograph finesse. Working in an NLE tuned for grading from the outset would have been a dream for me.
(btw, none of this should be taken as any suggestion that I was any good. 😁 But a man's gotta have goals, and them were mine.)
Again noting that I haven't edited in 18 years, which is now almost the amount of time I DID edit before that (and some notion of how long I've been at this game), so I'm no position to endorse anything even by implication....but like you, Mike, I very strongly responded to Grant's description of the emotional intent of the control surface, and by extension, that dimension of Resolve itself. That's what I responded to you in your description as well!
It's taking me a bit longer than anticipated to put together proper coverage of the event yesterday (surprise!!!), but for anyone who missed it, I do still recommend watching the full 80-minute+ press conference. Here's the link again. Grant strikes a number of beats that some folks might not expect -- you've probably not seen many CEOs dismantle their featured product with a Torx wrench mid-demo -- but I especially appreciated the emphasis on the different needs that "an editor who grades" and "a color grader" might have from a control surface, and how the Mini in particular is aimed at people who edit and grade in particular.
It's highly likely to me that the control surface will actually make some converts to Resolve as an NLE. My highly inappropriate (and oft-to-be-revisited) jokes about handling DaVinci's balls notwithstanding, it's not like other control surfaces, certainly not in this new price range.
There's also a fundamental difference between external hardware controls to a software application (say, a Wacom tablet for FCPX or After Effects or whatever), and finally having affordable access to the heart of the way that the application was always designed to be used. There was never intended to be any difference between hardware and software. It's not like a keyboard. The two are one.
Resolve is obviously entirely capable in its software-only state, which is how it has reshaped so much in this business so quickly. Still, the kinds of advanced features and finesse now literally at your fingertips, though, in a physical interface meant to be used emotionally, and dare I say it, intuitively, potentially facilitate new kinds of expression in the context of nonlinear editing.
Certainly new dimensions of expressiveness. It's the functional equivalent of plugging in. This obviously isn't only true for Resolve. I hope you've all had a chance to see a world class grader work. It's like watching a DJ, except that they never take their eyes off the screen. So it's also kinda magical, too. Bringing this magic into the heart of editing, made possible with the reunified hardware-software interface, strikes me as a big deal.
This is, needless to say, another example of my enthusiasm getting the better of me. 😁 This forum's history is replete with them, as so many people here are so fond of reminding me of, going back to my prediction before it was even released that FCPX would have 10x the customers that FCP ever did by the end of its first year. And I stand by that prediction, dammit! 😎
Anyway, thanks again, Mike! I appreciate your insights on using Resolve to edit, and am reminded by your description of your specific approach so similar to mine that it's always going to be part of who I am. It's easy to forget when we intentionally wrap ourselves around the axles of a million passing arguments that this stuff can actually matter in how we live our lives and express our creative intent.
In case you're curious, the show that we edited and finished on Resolve has its US premiere on Nat Geo Wild tomorrow night (Sunday, March 26), 9pm/8c. "Call of the Baby Beluga." It's a whale film. 52 min. It's showing in a bunch of other countries, too. We delivered in 4K. Lots of drone footage from a Phantom 3.
Another advantage of editing in Resolve I was thinking about after this discussion is that people are always saying that these days, because tweaking in any NLE is so easy, they can't get the director to lock picture so they can send it to Resolve. When you're in Resolve anyway, that's less of an issue.
[Mike Parfit] "In case you're curious, the show that we edited and finished on Resolve has its US premiere on Nat Geo Wild tomorrow night (Sunday, March 26), 9pm/8c. "Call of the Baby Beluga.""
Thanks for the tip, Mike! I can't wait!
Tim writes -
World class headline news, direct to you, no waiting in line at NAB.
REPLY - yea, I notice that. I can't believe I am saying this, as I am going to NAB this year in 2017, but I am starting to question the need for NAB. Apple is not there. I understand RED will not have a booth on the floor. Neither will Small Tree, ProMax, Symply. LumaForge is not there. Synology is not there. Netgear is not there. In addition to the recent Blackmagic press releases, on Resolve, Mini Ursa, ATEM TV Studio, Web Presenter, and mini Recorder - will there be another 30 new products ?
Do I need to go to see HDR monitors ? Do I need to go, to fight the crowd in the insane Adobe booth ?
Rescue 1, Inc.
[Bob Zelin] "REPLY - yea, I notice that. I can't believe I am saying this, as I am going to NAB this year in 2017, but I am starting to question the need for NAB. Apple is not there. I understand RED will not have a booth on the floor. Neither will Small Tree, ProMax, Symply. LumaForge is not there. Synology is not there. Netgear is not there. In addition to the recent Blackmagic press releases, on Resolve, Mini Ursa, ATEM TV Studio, Web Presenter, and mini Recorder - will there be another 30 new products ?
Do I need to go to see HDR monitors ? Do I need to go, to fight the crowd in the insane Adobe booth ? "
Back when Apple pulled out of NAB, I realized that the function of "Trade Shows" for was shifting in a major way.
If you have a brand that's well known, I'd suspect it's increasingly hard to justify the expense to do the big trade shows if the reason you're doing so is to share information about your produces. Apple cracked this code years ago. They gained MUCH greater message reach just doing a Steve Jobs demo and putting it on the web. They cut costs, gained message control, AND reached FAR beyond the class of those with enough resources to travel to the Trade Show location. BlackMagic is doing precisely the same thing today. Expect more companies to follow - IF they have their market mindshare already established.
For a smaller concern without the name recognition, the trade show makes more sense. And for an individual attending, it can make HUGE sense, since it consolidates in one place, the PEOPLE who are experts in specific disciplines in the trade shows area of interest.
For my money, Trade shows aren't about things anymore. They're about People. Without my NAB attendance, I wouldn't know half the people in the industry that I do. And that has real, practical value. As an example, just yesterday I was struggling with a workflow problem regarding clip export from my FCP X storylines for a particular project. Because of the virtual rolodex I've built via community involvement - a major part of which are contacts I've made at NABs over the years, I found myself linking up with the person who WROTE the software I was having trouble with - and he graciously spent time helping me understand a much better way to address my needs.
It's not the THINGS you see that make a trade show valuable. It's the people you get to drink with.
My 2 cents.
Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.
This is pretty interesting!
Black Magic's pace of innovation and release of new products is very impressive.
Extrapolate that development curve and you'll have AI in the edit bay before you can
say, "The Singularity is near"!!!
[Mark Raudonis] "Extrapolate that development curve and you'll have AI in the edit bay before you can say, "The Singularity is near"!!!"
It might be closer than you think:
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
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AI editors are already here. Memories in the iOS photo app actually does a surprisingly nice job of cobbling together photo montages leveraging metadata. Also DJI's Go App does an occasionally decent pass on drone highlight edits. The latter's irony is not lost on this human.
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