The present and future of post production business and technology | Philip Hodgetts

CAT | Technology

Over on IndieGoGo there’s a project for MOX – an open source mezzanine codec for (mostly) postproduction workflows and archiving. The obvious advantage over existing codecs like ProRes, DNxHD and Cineform is that MOX will be open source, so there is significantly reduce risk that the codec might go away in the future, or stop being supported.

Technically the project looks reasonable and feasible. There is a small, but significant, group of people who worry that support for the current codecs may go away in the future. There’s no real evidence for this, other than that Apple has deprecated old, inefficient and obsolete codecs by not bringing them forward to AVFoundation.

I have more concerns for the long term with an open source project. History shows that many projects start strong, but ultimately it comes down to a small group of people (or one in MOX’s case) doing all the work, and inevitably life’s circumstances intervene.

MOX is not a bad idea. I just doubt that it will gain and sustain the momentum it would need.

As Final Cut Pro X – and other modern video apps – are built on Frameworks from the core OS, those Frameworks sometimes provide clues to Apple’s thinking. One that we care a lot about is AVFoundation, which is the modern replacement for QuickTime at the application and OS level. We’ve seen this in the transition from QuickTime Player 7, which is built on QuickTime (both QTKit and the older C API). Unfortunately AVFoundation has lacked many features that are essential for video workflows, so I watch the features added to AVFoundation as a way of understanding where video apps might go.

Firstly, there has been a massive update to AVFoundation in Yosemite, and it appears we get reference movies back.

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Greg and I are heading for Amsterdam tomorrow for IBC, but especially the Amsterdam Supermeet. This will be the first time we’ve had Lumberjack System at a Supermeet and we’re going to celebrate by giving away 200 of these cute little keyring pouches that can carry a credit card, business cards, or a USB memory stick attached to your keyring.

Two of the pouches will carry vouchers for two (2) Envoy Pro EX 240GB SSD drives courtesy of OWC/ MacSales which you’ll get instantly from OWC at the Supermeet.

Come check out Lumberjack System – if you edit with Final Cut Pro X, some easy logging in the field will pay huge benefits preparing for post.

Visit our table at the #Amsterdam #SuperMeet.  Save €5.00 on tickets. Buy using this link: https://amsterdam2014.eventbrite.com/?discount=lumbervip

Adobe have previewed their IBC video app presentations and have confirmed that they will be continually adding new features to the Creative Cloud.

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FCP.co’s lead story today is good news for Apple and Final Cut Pro X – The BBC are adopting more than 1000 seats of Final Cut Pro X for news. To be fair, the BBC seems to be adopting both Final Cut Pro X and Premiere Pro across their own production units, and some remain on installs of Media Composer, but News seems to be going Final Cut Pro X exclusively.

My Apple PR contacts tell me that Final Cut Pro X is also being used on “several popular daytime shows” as well.

In other good news, not reported (yet) on FCP.co, the French TF1 group have also adopted Final Cut Pro X. According to this Tweet both Premiere Pro CC and Final Cut Pro X were tested, with Final Cut Pro X getting the gig.

Of course, come IBC I’m sure Adobe will share some of their new partners as well, and no doubt, increased Creative Cloud subscribers.

A new show in which we discuss 4K. http://www.theterenceandphilipshow.com/?p=546

Aug/14

18

Demystifying Apple’s ProRes Codec

In this free webinar I examine Apple’s ProRes codec inside and out. Content includes:

Apple’s ProRes family is becoming one of the most common formats in production and postproduction, but how much do you really know about this code? Which version is best for your needs?

  • Introducing the ProRes family
  • RCBA vs YUV – what does it mean?
  • Lossless vs Visually Lossless
  • Using ProRes: a codec by codec guide.

Check out the trailer and register free.

Avid folk – hi Frank – have been promoting this survey result that purportedly shows that Media Composer  is used more than all other NLEs. In fact the article starts off with:

Avid Media Composer remains the most popular editing system in production by a considerable margin. It’s the primary editing system of 70% of our respondents, proving that it still rules the roost despite the challenge from Apple and Adobe

Which is hardly accurate if you really examine the subject. In fact is bordering on deliberately misleading.

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Aug/14

11

The Metadata on a discussion about Metadata!

Over the weekend, Chris Fenwick interviewed me for his FCPX Grill podcast about the importance of logging, metadata and Lumberjack System. The podcast is available now and it is a good conversation.

What makes it meta though is that Alex Gollner logged the conversation and put it up on his website: metadata (logging) about a conversation on metadata. It doesn’t get much more meta than that!

I’m very happy to announce that Lumberjack System now has an iOS Logger – an app for logging without an Internet connection. To celebrate we’re offering the next 50 (well, less now) people who sign up for a year of Lumberjack System a free copy of Intelligent Assistance’s Producer’s Best Friend.

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