As the year officially draws to a close, it’s time for our annual round-up of the most popular CineTechnica blog posts over the last 12 months. It’s been a busy 2016, and as usual a wide range of topics was represented – including new product announcements, comparison charts, workflow how-tos, custom scene files, and more.
Our Top 15 blogs are listed below in no particular order. Make sure to check them out, and let us know in the comments what you’d like to see us cover in 2017!
…continue reading Top Blogs of 2016
The ALEXA Mini from ARRI is a versatile and flexible camera body with a compact form factor and outstanding image quality. Combining some of the best features of ARRI’s other cameras, such as the ALEXA series and the AMIRA, as well as some of the image quality improvements ARRI made when developing the large format ALEXA 65, the ALEXA Mini is a compelling option for DPs and shooters who want to realize their creative vision in a wide range of situations. Its symmetrical, cube-like design is well suited for handheld scenarios, such as with a Ronin or MōVI gimbal, on the shoulder, or mounted on a drone for soaring aerial shots. It’s equally at home in the studio as an “A” or “B” camera on commercials, music videos or narrative projects. One of the best features the ALEXA Mini “inherited” from its doc-style bigger brother, the AMIRA, is ARRI’s next generation look management controls which allow for CDL-style grading directly in the camera or — and this is the topic we’ll be focusing on today — the ability to load look files converted from 1D and 3D LUTs directly into the camera to be applied to a variety of viewing options and outputs.
When used in conjunction with the ARRI Color Tool, a free download from the ARRI website, programs like DaVinci Resolve can be used to create unique looks and load them into the camera quickly. Pomfort LiveGrade can be used to color the camera’s LogC signal in real-time, and the resulting grades can then also be loaded directly into the camera. This is especially useful in situations where the camera is mounted in a position that makes doing live color impractical. Lastly, many people have large libraries of existing 3D LUTs they’ve found around the web, made themselves, or purchased. LUT utilities such as Lattice serve as “swiss army knives” for getting your existing production-quality LUT into a format that can be loaded into the ALEXA Mini. In this blog post we’ll take a look at all three of these approaches.
…continue reading Creating and Loading 3D LUTs on the ALEXA Mini
I had the chance to drop by the Flanders Scientific booth, where Flanders CEO Bram Desmet showed off their new BoxIO LUT boxes, as well as the 17″ version of their popular DM250 display, the DM170. The BoxIO comes in two versions: the top-of-the-line version, which features two inputs, two clean loop-throughs and two outputs, and the BoxIO Lite, which has a single input and two outputs and which will retail for under $1000. On both, the two outputs show up in LiveGrade, Pomfort’s popular on-set color grading application, as separate devices meaning that each can receive a distinct LUT, essentially providing two LUT boxes in one. This means up to eight cameras could be independently colored using only four BoxIOs, all of which would fit in only 1U of rack space. The clean loop-throughs solve one of the age-old problems in on-set signal distribution, allowing the clean signal from the camera to travel beyond the LUT box, which has generally been an “end-of-chain” device requiring other hardware prior to it to loop out of cleanly. BoxIO can also save full-res frame grabs to LiveGrade and generate test patches internally, allowing it to be used directly with SpectraCal’s CalMan software and LightSpace CMS without a test signal generator.
…continue reading NAB 2016: Flanders Scientific Updates
In addition to manufacturer Tech Talks at our NAB booth this year, we also presented short AbelCine training sessions every day. In the first session, Andy discussed creating 3D LUTs with Pomfort Livegrade. In the second session, Jeff did a short presentation on RED cameras and DSMC2 updates.
For our third session, we had guest instructor Warren Eagles (who has taught some of the ICA classes in our LA office) show off some of his favorite tips and tricks in the newest version of DaVinci Resolve. Make sure to watch all three sessions above and check out all our upcoming AbelCine Training workshops!
…continue reading NAB 2016: AbelCine Training Presentations
Just over three years ago, I wrote up an article on how to import Canon C300 footage into various NLEs. The C300 Mark II has been out for some time now, but it’s just recently that all the major software applications have supported it. Apple’s FCP X has just been updated to support the new XF-AVC 10-bit format found in the C300 Mark II. This is great news for anyone wanting to work with the camera and FCP. Previously, Canon had been giving away an Adobe Premiere subscription with the camera to make sure everyone was up and running.
Below is a brief breakdown of how to use the new footage in both Canon’s own software, as well as FCP X (v 10.2.3), Premiere Pro (2015.2), AVID Media Composer (v 8.4.5), and DaVinci Resolve 12. Note the versions of the software, if you are running earlier versions then compatibility cannot be guaranteed.
…continue reading How to Import C300 Mark II Footage in Avid, FCP X, Premiere & Resolve
After using Zacuto’s Gratical EVF on a few shoots recently, I wanted to take a more in-depth look at the exposure tools and LUT functions that can be extremely valuable on set. I already knew I liked the versatility of the viewfinder and the user-friendly interface, but I wanted to see how these advanced tools could benefit my image and my set. In my first video, I use the Zacuto Gratical HD with a Sony FS7, connected via HD-SDI, and then to a TVLogic 5.6″ monitor. I show how to calibrate the viewfinder and how to best use the waveform and vectorscope tools. I also demonstrate to use the false color and zebra overlays to ensure a properly exposed image whether sending a Log or Rec. 709 signal. In addition, I explain how to set up user buttons to maximize the use of these exposure tools in order to judge exposure based on a post-LUT and Log image.
…continue reading Zacuto Gratical: A Closer Look at Exposure Tools & LUTs
At IBC this year, Teradek released their new COLR wireless LUT box. This compact system can take in HD-SDI or HDMI and output a video signal with a Look Up Table (LUT) applied. COLR can work both wired (via Ethernet) and wirelessly, as it has a built in Wi-Fi access point. Once connected you can control the system via a web user interface. This interface allows you to load in LUTs, including 1D LUTs, CDLs, and 3D LUTs with up to 33-point accuracy.
…continue reading At the Bench: Teradek COLR