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NUKE 9 now available for download - free non-commercial version coming soon!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
November 25, 2014, at 2:37 AM

The Foundry's NUKE is an award-winning compositor for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X and just recently the company released the new version of the software - NUKE 9, NUKEX 9 and NUKE STUDIO. NUKE is a professional tool with prices starting at $4,213 for the basic version, but the good news is that the company made the decision to offer a free version for non-commercial use as well! The free version of NUKE, NUKEX and NUKE STUDIO will be released early in 2015 and it will be available to anyone who wants to learn, explore and have fun with NUKE. Additionally to the limited license, the free version will have some other limitations - such as output resolution limited to HD, limited Python scripting possibilities, no monitor output support, command line rendering disabled and more. Nevertheless it is great that many new users will be able to play with the software and learn how to use it! 
 

 

To find out more on NUKE 9, you can read the Release Notes (here) and also make sure to watch the official videos for more info on the new versions.
 

 

And here's the list of key features (via The Foundry):

  • Complete online-editing toolkit - Intuitive and familiar editorial tools get the job done fast, whether it’s on set editing, online conform, or simply knocking out quick edits.
  • In-timeline real-time effects - Powerful GPU accelerated effects can be added right in the timeline, letting artists quickly experiment, polish and achieve the high-end look they need.
  • Fluid end-to-end workflow - Combined timeline and node-graph workflow lets artists work the way they want with all the power to create a project in one application from start to finish.
  • Powerful collaborative control - A hub for total project control lets artists share scripts, work collaboratively with annotations and version up and down with ease.
  • Real-time 4K playback - Plays in-application and through SDI-Out Hardware giving confidence to client attended sessions. For the first time, The Foundry has certified an HP® and NVIDIA® configuration with Blackmagic.
  • Intelligent built-in rendering - Built-in render farm functionality automatically uses all available resources to enhance speed and performance, either on a single machine or when connected to multiple.

Source: http://www.thefoundry.co.uk

4K video playback supported on iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus thanks to WaltR app!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
November 25, 2014, at 1:45 AM

As you know the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are some of the most powerful smartphones on the market, all this thanks to the new A8 chip. And now creators of the Mac app WaltR found out, that these devices are able to play 4K video files! This is huge, even though both new iPhones have displays with a much lower resolution than 4K (1920x1080 in the case of the iPhone 6 Plus). It is a bit sad that you cannot use this feature officially, but it gives hope that Apple is working on new 4K applications and who knows, maybe the company will introduce the possibility to record 4K video with a future system update? Right now however you can upload 4K files to your iPhone only with the WaltR app - it cannot be done via iTunes. If you want to test 4K playback, you can download the free version of the WaltR app (here) and then all you need to do is drag your 4K files. Additionally the app supports such formats as AVI and MKV, so files officially unsupported by Apple. And below a proof of concept:
 

 

Source: http://applecenter.pl

Close 'The Gap': great motivational video for creatives!
Posted by Andrzej, motionVFX Team
November 21, 2014, at 10:26 AM

Are you satisfied with your creative achievements? If you were to draw a curve of how you gain your creative skills and knowledge what would it look like and where’s the point you think you are in right now? All of you who are doing creative work have to be aware that your work is never complete, however skilled you are, there will always be fields for improvement. And if you’re just past the moment of naïve confidence and you begin to realize who much work’s still ahead, that’s especially the time to work harder.

For all of you creatives here’s a great motivational video called ‘The Gap’ put together by Daniel Sax. It’s based on, and uses the voice of Ira Glass during an interview on storytelling (though it applies to other fields just as well), where he mentions the gap between what you’re achieving in your work and what your taste tells your it should be like. That gap is for you to close.

Without further ado, here’s the video:

As mentioned, the speech comes from interview with Ira Glass, which can be found on YouTube here (other parts also available).

Source: http://vimeo.com

Indeep review of the Samsung NX1 4K camera + video comparison!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
November 21, 2014, at 3:18 AM

Andrew Reid of EOS HD posted his indeep and long review of the Samsung NX1. The camera is pretty exciting and it costs $1,599, so it is also quite affordable. What's more the camera offers 4K support and clean 4K HDMI output for uncompressed quality. According to Andrew the Samsung NX1 is perhaps the best 4K internal interchangeable lens camera on the market for shooting in good light and if you want to see what to expect from this nice new product, make sure to watch the video comparison that Andrew posted on Vimeo (below). And the sensor is indeed a beast, because in Samsung’s lab its output ran at 6.5K RAW at 240fps! Of course the final camera doesn't give you the opportunity to shoot in 6.5K, but we all know what Magic Lantern did to Canon's products, so who knows, maybe in the future the NX1 will also get new possibilities thanks to talented users.
 

 

Andrew writes that the sensor is is basically a portable, power efficient version of the CMOS in the 6K RED Dragon.

"It can do the 6.5K raw readout thanks to a copper process on the sensor that reduces resistance and therefore heat by 70%. It is the industry’s first 28MP APS-C sensor for stills cameras (Super 35mm in cinema terms) and the first backside illuminated APS-C sensor. You can read a great interview over at Imaging Resource with Samsung about this here. (...) This new Samsung sensor is a massive step forward for them, indeed the whole industry. In good light this sensor produces really top notch video. Beautiful Canon / Nikon-like colour but with the resolving power of the best 4K cinema cameras. Great dynamic range too, although perhaps 1 stop less in the highlights compared to the GH4 and 5D Mark III Raw.

(...)

The H.265 codec on the Pro setting (highest) is 70Mbit/s 4:2:0. I confirmed this by looking at the file metadata. You benefit from a 30% space saving of 70Mbit compared to 100Mbit on the GH4, and that was already a very small file size for 4K. Here’s a full 4K frame, click to enlarge then drag to desktop for the 4K version…"



But as always no camera is perfect:

"The NX1 is the first Samsung I have ever wanted to keep. Serious photographic dealers have so far avoided them as have serious photographers. However for filmmakers especially, the NX1 is appealing. The 4K image it offers for $1599 is astonishingly good and in many ways better than the Panasonic GH4.

It’s a very serious camera for Samsung, but their job isn’t quite finished. The NX1 lacks the kind of filmmaker feedback clearly present in the GH4 and the broad range of codecs as well as advanced settings like master pedestal and luma-range (0-255). The GH4 will soon get V-LOG (Panasonic’s answer to S-LOG 2 on the Sony A7S) and I hope that Samsung consider a similar firmware update for the NX1.

If you only shoot with ONE camera and you need a full frame sensor along with astounding low light performance clearly the Sony A7S is still the way to go. But the NX1 arguably packs in the most advanced technology. Having an internal 4K codec in the NX1 sets it apart from the A7S in another way."

So, as you can see the NX1 is a great product, but for low light shooting the A7S can be a better choice and the GH4 should give you additional filmmaking options. Nevertheless the Samsung might improve in the future and it is already an awesome product that you should take into consideration.

For more info on the NX1 make sure to read the full review (here).

Source: http://www.eoshd.com

Blackmagic Design adds 80fps recording and more to URSA 4K film camera!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
November 21, 2014, at 2:22 AM

The Blackmagic URSA is one of the most interesting products introduced by Blackmagic Design and since its launch, the camera got constantly updated and now is even better than initially. The camera was built to handle the ergonomics of large film crews as well as single person use and it has a built-in 10 inch fold out on set monitor, large user upgradeable Super 35 global shutter 4K image sensor, 12G-SDI and internal dual RAW and ProRes recorders. What's more the sensor and lens mount assembly can be changed, so you can choose EF or PL lens mounts, or even a broadcast video sensor with B4 mount. This is pretty great because it gives you the possibility to upgrade to the latest sensor technology in the future. But most importantly the camera gets new features thanks to software updates and the company just released the 1.9.9 version of the software that introduces recording frame rate up to 80 frames per second!
 

 

For more info on this update make sure to watch the video above and below some more on the new frame rate:

"The frame rate settings in URSA have been changed and now the record frame rate is not limited by the video frame rate. This means customers can select the frame rate they want their work to be done, such as 24 frames per second for a feature film shoot, and then independently select the recording rate from 5 all the way up to 80 frames per second. The advantage of this is the URSA camera can shoot slow motion or fast motion shots but all the recorded video files are always set to the video rate, and you can see the effect of the higher or slower frame rate when playing. This means you can playback the exact same look on the cameras as the clips will play in a time line of editing software."

Additionally the update includes a new CinemaDNG 12 bit RAW format that uses 3:1 compression to allow RAW files to be recorded in one third of the size of uncompressed RAW, so the files will take much less space on your memory card. 

This new software update also adds multiple new user interface changes to the Blackmagic URSA camera, including the new Dashboard menu screen allowing features such as formatting and other settings to be selected. Also included in the new user interface is scrolling menus.

Source: https://www.blackmagicdesign.com

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