Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Here's to a fantastic 2009!

broadcastGEMs Introduces 2nd Volume of After Effects Project Templates

broadcastGEMs introduces it's second volume of highly customizable Adobe After Effects project files. These project files are uniquely designed by producers and designers to ensure that you get stuff that works in the real world.

From its initial offering, broadcastGEMs started a totally new industry that provides high-end customizable design solutions for discerning designers and producers. broadcastGEMs' AEPro Series Volume02 includes two products: HD (1080 & 720) and SD (NTSC & PAL). The product also includes ten project files, two Expressos (Expression scripts that allow users to control effect parameters using standard effect controls), five logo/branding sequences and 10 seamless tiles for use with their Texture Animator Expresso. The second Expresso, Text Animator Expresso allows users to control Adobe After Effects' Text Animator properties by animating a second image.

As with previous versions of the AEPro Series, users can expect up to three installments of freebies consisting of Animation Presets and project files for the next calendar year. The AEPro Series Volume 02, will be available in the first week of January 2009. Early bird discounts of up to 48% are available for orders received prior to January 06, 2009. Catch a glimpse of the product here.

More product info is available at broadcastgems.com

About broadcastGEMs:

broadcastGEMs was founded by Roland Kahlenberg, a Certified Expert and Instructor in Adobe After Effects. Roland is also a pioneer Forum Leader in the Adobe After Effects forum at creativeCOW.net and he has lectured at under-graduate and post-graduate levels. His professional work covers broadcast design for leading broadcast networks and major corporations.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Maxon Video Quick Tips: Find and Replace Materials

Check out podcast tip 15 from Maxon: Find and replace materials.

cinema 4dGet FREE Training with purchase! Limited time! 3-hours of Free online interactive hands-on/one-on-one training. Valued at $180.00! Offer expires on 12/31/08 and is good on full versions of Maxon Cinema 4D Core, Maxon Cinema 4D R11 XL Bundle, Maxon Cinema 4D R11 Studio Bundle and on competitive upgrades.

Download a trial version of Maxon Cinema 4D here.

Adobe CS4 Speech Transcription

I've played with it a bit in Soundbooth and its a very cool feature. Read Scott Simmons' Kicking the tires on Adobe CS4 speech transcription of on The Editblog.

FCP SuperMeet January 7

Toolfarm is a silver sponsor and we will have a table at the 8th Annual Final Cut Pro SuperMeet in San Francisco on January 7, 2009. Stop by and meet us. Doors open 4:30PM for FCP Trade Show featuring 24 vendors.

It's $10.99 per person. $15.00 at the door. Ticket will include 2 raffle tickets
Get Tickets Here!.

Top 10 Final Cut Pro Tips Video

Sign up for TheFinalCutPro newsletter and get the Top 10 Final Cut Pro Tips Video.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Chicago Motion Graphics Festival 2009

mgfest

Only in Chicago: The Legendary $7 Festival of 2009

(Chicago, IL, December 1, 2008) - With MacWorld recently announcing they are closing their doors for good and Midway Games laying of 150 full-time employees... the recession of 2009 is beginning to infect the minds of the creative industry with decreasing budgets and bottom lines.

However, there is still cheery news for the holidays; the Chicago Motion Graphics Festival (a 7-day conference in the fast moving field of design technology) has opened it's Conference, Screenings, Studio Tours and Art Showcases for only $7. Rather than charging the typical $500-$1500 conference fee, the Chicago Motion Graphics Festival encourages participants to spend their money on new books, DVDs and software that are offered at a discount rate during the conference.

"Rather than buying an experience," comments Mason Dixon, co-director of the festival's sixth year, "we want people to commit to upgrading their skills, aesthetics and software, all the while getting totally inspired by some amazing motion design artists and technologists."

The festival's "Motion Market" offers attendees significant discounts on DVD collections of audio/video art and Motion Graphics work, technical training books, workshops, video hardware and software upgrades. Plus over $10,000 in free software will be given away as door prizes. All events require an RSVP on the MGFest website, which also grants access to several online-only events that occur during the festival week.

While Chicago is home to the Motion Graphics Festival, this year MGFest tours to four other cities nationally. In 2009, MGFest will visit Cambridge, Massachusetts, Austin, Texas, Atlanta, Georgia and Washington DC.

"Chicago is, and always will be, the heart of MGFest. It is the launch and the conclusion; it's always the biggest event, and sets the tone for the rest of the year. Why else would it be in January" Mason explains. The festival kicks-off on January 20-25, 2009.

About the Motion Graphics Festival

In its 6th year, MGFest stands as the premier US event showcasing creative motion picture design. The festival presents a year-long, regionally focused program of events. The MGFest09 Tour focuses on motion design, sound design, and film & video technology by hosting: art showcases, exhibits, workshops, classes, panel discussions, studio tours, theater screenings and industry mixers.

For more information, visit the Festival web site at www.MGFest.com

Festival Sponsors include: The Chicago Convergence, Columbia College, Stash DVD Magazine, Maxon, Toolfarm, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Bridges Media Group, Lift Motion Design, Future Media Concepts, Create Digital Motion, Digieffects, Livid Instruments, Resolume, Boris FX, All City Technology, Lumen Eclipse, Sterling Ledet, VidVox, SXSW Interactive, Mac Specialist, Ableton, Harold Washington College, UnScene, and Clif Bar.

Free Winter Presets for Boris RED

winter preset

Get Five Free Winter Presets that are compatible with Boris RED 4.x or higher!

Don't have Boris RED? Download a free trial version here.

More on Boris RED in Toolfarm's Plug-in Finder | Buy Boris RED

GreenScreen Made Easy by Hanke & Yamazaki

GreenScreen Made EasyJeremy Hanke, editor of Microfilmmaker Magazine, and I are really excited about our upcoming book GreenScreen Made Easy. It's out in April and we're already hearing some terrific reviews. More on this in early 2009.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Pro Applications Update 2008-05 includes Color 1.0.4

Pro Applications Updates improve reliability for Apple's professional applications and are recommended for all users of Final Cut Studio, Final Cut Server, and Logic Studio. Pro Applications Update 2008-05 addresses general performance issues and improves overall stability.

Pro Applications Update 2008-05 includes Color 1.0.4. For more information about this software update, see the Release Notes.

Via Final Cut User

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

New Boris Continuum Light Rays Unit

boris light rays

The new Boris Continuum Light Rays Unit includes the following filters from Boris Continuum Complete:
  • Rays Cartoon - creates light out of user-defined "cartoon edges" of an image.
  • Rays Puffy Light - creates light which spreads from a source point for a soft, "puffy" appearance.
  • Rays Radiant Edges - creates light from the edges of an image.
  • Rays Radiant Spotlight - a combination of a Light Ray filter and a Spotlight.
  • Rays Ring - masks the light source with a ring.
  • Rays Ripply - combines a light rays effect with a rippled light effect.
  • Rays Streaky - produces a light that contains streaks.
  • Rays Textured - creates a textured light using a noise map pattern.
  • Rays Wedge - mattes the light source with a wedge-shaped light.
The Boris Continuum Light Rays Unit is available for $99! Available Now for Mac or Win.

Boris Continuum Light Rays supports After Effects, Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, Final Cut Express, and Motion.

Adobe Lightroom 2.2 now available

lightroomThe Adobe Lightroom 2.2 update is now available for download [ Mac | Win ]

The release includes new camera support for the following models: Canon EOS 5D Mark II, Canon PowerShot G10, Panasonic DMC-G1, Panasonic DMC-FX150, Panasonic DMC-FZ28, Panasonic DMC-LX3 and Leica D-LUX 4.

Buy Lightroom 2.2 | Upgrade to Lightroom 2.2. It's a free update for owners of Lightroom 2.0.

Read more at the Lightroom Journal

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Friday, December 12, 2008

RE:Vision Effects releases DE:Noise for OFX

denoiseNow available for Nuke, Fusion and Toxik!

RE:Vision Effects today released its acclaimed DE:Noise plugin set for Nuke, Fusion and Toxik. DE:Noise is a plugin set that removes excessive noise and artifacts in one easy-to-use tool. It handles spurious frame-to-frame defects ranging from fine digital and electronic noise to blotchy spots (e.g. dirt on the film). DE:Noise combines proprietary motion estimation (optical flow) techniques with feature-sensitive, edge-preserving spatial filtering methods to reduce the visual impact of various problems such as: noisy video (that can happen with low-light capture), excessive film grain, prefiltering noisy greenscreens before keying, CG renders affected by ray-tracing sampling artifacts, dust captured during film scan/transfer and printing, snow, drop-outs and many other defects.

Features of DE:Noise:
  • Pre-processing contrast controls to help enhance the noise for easier elimination.
  • Smart spatial filtering controls that allow for the spatial smoothing of noise without smoothing over important features in the image sequence.
  • 8 different temporal filtering methods that uses motion estimation (via optical flow) to correlate images over time in order to reduce noise and other artifacts.
  • Post-processing to help punch up the result or to undo the preprocessing contrast enhancement.
  • Post sharpening option for when the denoising process makes the result softer than desired.
  • Unclamped floating point support in applications that support it.
  • A way to mark segments to avoid problems with flashes and other discontinuities.

Availability and compatibility for the OFX version of DE:Noise:
  • DE:Noise is available for Mac OS X 10.4 and up, Windows 32 and 64 bit (XP or Vista) and Linux 32 and 64 bit.
  • DE:Noise has been tested in The Foundry Nuke 5.1 and up, eyeon Fusion 5.2 and up, and Autodesk Toxik 2008 and up. Other hosts that support OFX plugins may work, but please try out the demo before purchasing.

Pricing for the OFX version of DE:Noise:
  • Full version node-locked licenses are priced at $189.95. Floating licenses are priced at $284.93.
  • Render-only node-locked licenses are priced at $44.95, and render-only floating licenses are priced at $67.43.
  • DE:Noise OFX is now included in Effections for Fusion, version 9.
DE:Noise continues to be available for After Effects, combustion, Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro and Motion.

DE:Noise is a trademark of RE:Vision Effects, Inc. Other trademarks are owned by their respective owners. Features, pricing and availability are subject to change without notice.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Telestream's Episode Desktop Media Encoder Now Available for Windows

episode Episode Version 5.1 release introduces cross-platform support, enabling fast, high-quality, easy-to-use transcoding between virtually any format - for both Mac and PC users

Nevada City, Calif., December 11, 2008 - Telestream today announced an important milestone for its Episode® Series media encoding software products. Previously only offered on the Mac platform, version 5.1 extends Telestream's Episode and Episode Pro desktop encoding products to the Windows operating system. Version 5.1 also brings watch folders to Episode desktop products for both Mac and PC users. Episode provides universal transcoding between virtually any video and audio format, offering ultimate flexibility in a single software package.

"With the addition of Windows support and watch folders, Episode 5.1 is more accessible and useful than ever," observed digital video compression expert Nate Caplin. "Episode Pro's deep format support and comprehensive set of professional-grade filters make it an essential part of my video transcoding toolkit. Whether I need to convert files for post-production or produce files for the web and mobile devices, I've never met an encoding challenge I couldn't solve with Episode Pro."

Episode products provide a fast, flexible and future-proof solution for virtually any SD or HD compression need. Episode desktop products include extensive fine-tuning compression capabilities, batch encoding and many presets which enable users to quickly create extremely high-quality output files. Cross-platform support in Episode and Episode Pro 5.1 means that users and organizations no longer need to learn and support multiple encoding tools for different purposes. The addition of watch folders in version 5.1 saves time and effort by enabling users to simply drop finished projects into folders for automatic encoding.

"Episode Pro is the closest thing I've ever found to a universal anything-in, anything-out transcoder," adds Caplin. "But its power goes beyond simple conversion and compression. What really sets Episode apart is the ability it gives me to easily massage any video source into clean output by applying its extensive set of video and audio pre-processing filters. With Episode Pro, I feel like I'm in control of my video."

Episode Series provides scalability from standalone desktop media encoding applications for individual users to powerful, server-based encoding applications for larger organizations with higher volume needs. Known for speed, quality and ease of use, Episode products simplify content repurposing for distribution to the growing number of digital media channels such as Web, DVD, IPTV, mobile phones and portable devices.

Version 5.1 offers a number of powerful new features and enhancements. With extended MXF decode and encode support, Episode continues to expand support for broadcast workflows and playout servers such as Avid, Omneon and K2. Episode now offers more robust, intelligent monitoring of incoming media to further automate and fine tune file transfer into Episode Engine for encoding and delivery to specified destinations.

Telestream's Pipeline device allows for media ingest directly from SDI tape or live sources into Episode Engine. In version 5.1, users can simultaneously encode media into any format with Episode Engine while it is being ingested with Pipeline - saving valuable time in critical workflows.

For Mac desktop users, version 5.1 adds enhanced functionality to the Apple Final Cut Compressor plug-in. In addition to encoding to any format, users can now adjust settings for Windows Media and Flash encoding - including resize, deinterlace and frame rate.

Cross-platform Episode desktop encoders for Mac OS X and Windows are available in two versions. Episode ($495) imports virtually any file format, including broadcast and professional formats, and encodes media to all major Web, DVD authoring, mobile and portable device formats, including Flash 8/9, Windows Media, QuickTime, H.264, VC-1, 3GPP, MPEG-1/2/4 and more. Episode Pro ($995) includes all of the same features and formats plus encoding to high- end broadcast and professional formats such as GXF, MXF, H.264 High Profile, DVCPRO HD, mobile multi-bit rate and more. Server-based Episode Engine products for Mac OS X start at $3,950.

Episode desktop products are now available for online purchase at www.telestream.net. Both the desktop and server products are also available from Telestream's worldwide network of resellers and distributors, as well as Apple online stores. For more information or a free trial, visit www.telestream.net.

Topaz Adjust v2.6: Stability and Bug Fixes

topaz labsTopaz Adjust v2.6 has just been released for both Mac and Windows. This free update enhances stability and fixes certain bugs that have been reported in v2.5 and below.

Upgrade here | Free Trial | Buy Topaz Adjust

The update fixes the preview colorspace, handles memory better, and is more stable than previous versions. It also has includes a new 'Share' button that gives a convenient way to share your settings with others.

Abaltat Muse Review and 50% Off Sale

Eric Henninger at Microfilmmaker gives Abaltat Muse an 8.5/10 score, pretty darn high. We happen to have Muse on sale at Toolfarm through the end of the year for half price through the end of the year too! More info on the sale here.

Here is what Eric had to say about Muse:

Great music has the ability to take your project to the next level. (And of course, the fact that the music is royalty free is a huge perk for micro-budget filmmakers!) Whether it is a commercial spot or a trailer for your film, the right music will help you further solidify the mood of your piece and connect emotionally with your target audience. Since most of us do not have access to wonderful composers or the money to hire one, Muse 2.0 makes sense. You know what sounds good and what works or doesn’t work for your piece, so why not use software that allows you to do it simply and effectively?

Read the full review here.

Review: Looking at Magic Bullet's Steady

Scott Simmons at The Editblog reviews Magic Bullet Steady in his latest posting. He was very happy with the results. (Try a free demo of Magic Bullet Steady here | More on Magic Bullet Steady in our Plug-in Finder

Here are a couple of samples of his tests:


Magic Bullet Steady test from Scott Simmons on Vimeo.


Magic Bullet Steady handheld tracking test from Scott Simmons on Vimeo.


Magic Bullet Steady pan from Scott Simmons on Vimeo.

Read the full review of Magic Bullet Steady

Artbeats Announces Free Video Podcast; New Free Clip

artbeats abstractCheck out the new Artbeats podcast on iTunes, hosted by none other than Steve Holmes, who has been doing training for Adobe and Total Training for quite a while.

Also, if you sign up for the Artbeats newsletter, each month a free clip is given away to subscribers. This month's exclusive free download is UW208 HD from their Ultra Water 2 HD collection. See all Artbeats footage at Toolfarm, including their new RED Camera Footage. You can subscribe to the Artbeats newsletter by going to the Artbeats website. The signup is in the lower left corner.

Chris and Trish Meyer of Cybermotion, who you probably know from their fantastic books Creating Motion Graphics and After Effects Apprentice, have a column in the Artbeats newsletter too. This month they discuss Color Finesse, a fantastic color correction tool for After Effects and Final Cut Pro. Read the article here.

The 12 Days of Freebies Day 3

If you haven't been over to Toolfarm in a few days, you're missing The 12 Days of Freebies, our gift to our customers and visitors. We will be unlocking a new freebie each weekday until December 24th.

Image Name

Freebies will include templates, project files, stock footage, and more; stay tuned!

Day One included a template for a 3D Greeting Card in AE and Day 2 included a fantastic holiday tree template from LME. Thanks to LME and the other vendors for participating. We will have lots of other goodies lined up, including freebies from Pond5, Eye Scream Factory, free presets for plug-ins and more. Day 3 will be uploaded shortly. What will it be? Is the suspense killing you?

After Effects 9.0.1 Available

after effects cs4 box shotIf Adobe Update Manager hasn't taken care of this for you, you can do it manually by going under the Help Menu > Updates. Alternately, download the Mac update or Windows update from the Adobe site.

Adobe 9.0.1 Release Notes |
Buy After Effects here

There are many fixes in this update, including the Puppet Tool, the Illustratorlayers importer, the Exposure effect, and stability of 3D object layers from Photoshop. They've also added Red Camera support. Here's a movie about that from Adobe TV.

Business Intelligence: How to Choose the Right HD Workflow for Modern Music Videos

Jason Diamond, who I met in New York over the summer, has an article at DigitalContentProducer.com titled Business Intelligence: How to Choose the Right HD Workflow for Modern Music Videos.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Digital Anarchy Releases ToonIt! Photo Cartooning Software for Photographs & Still Images

toonitAdobe Photoshop Plugin is Essential and Fun for Creating Believable Cartoons From Photographic Images

San Francisco, CA - December 9, 2008 - Digital Anarchy, a leading provider of cost-effective software for Adobe and Apple products, today announced the release of ToonIt! Photo 2.0 for Photoshop. ToonIt! reliably and easily creates cartoon-like images from photographs, freeing artists from time consuming techniques such as hand painting and masking. The filters use advanced algorithms from Toonamation Inc to create cartoon shading and outlines in Adobe Photoshop and Photoshop Elements.

ToonIt! for Photoshop analyzes photographs and then creates flat regions of color and outlines that produce a cel-shaded cartoon look. Photoshop users have a great deal of control that makes customizing the ‘toon' effect easy with different paint/toon styles, shading and outlines. The Effects Palette adds various special effects like outlines, enhanced shadows, color effects, and halftone effects. The Style Creator has 12 different algorithms that can be used to create the underlying cartoon or painterly style. A Preset Manager and Preview Window give further options to control the appearance and behavior of the cartoon.

Jim Tierney, CEO of Digital Anarchy, said, "ToonIt! has been incredibly popular for video applications. The photographers and print designers who've seen it have asked us repeatedly when it will be available for Photoshop. We're excited to finally release the product for still images because there's no better way of creating cartoon images."

One of the key features of ToonIt! is its ability to translate the details of the human face and form into a believable cartoon. People are typically most difficult to 'toon' because most people know what facial features and expressions should look like. ToonIt! is able to identify areas that should be shaded as one color and uses sophisticated edge detection to draw outlines. This creates very consistent, pleasing large features in the face and body while also retaining smaller details like hair and eyes. The filter allows photographers and designers to quickly create the effect on a wide variety of images without time consuming experimentation and masking.

Stan Schwartz, co-founder and President of Toonamation, said, "Since its initial release, ToonIt! has been well known for high quality cartoon effects. We've been working to extend its capabilities with a variety of new painted and graphic design effects that are equally visually compelling and that render just as cleanly as our originals. We're proud to offer to them you now, packaged together as Photoshop ToonIt!."

This product release follows the popularity of ToonIt! Video 1.0, a cartooning plugin set for video applications like After Effects and Final Cut Pro. While ToonIt! Video was sold to another development company in August 2008, the successful partnership between Digital Anarchy and Toonamation will continue to bring new and interesting products to the photography and graphics market.

Great features in ToonIt! Photo 2.0 include:

  • Beautiful Variety of Styles. Create a number of sophisticated looks including Flat Cartoon, Graphic Novel, Comic, and Pen & Ink using the 12 different algorithms and dozens of controls.
  • Outlines Only: Unparalleled edge detection creates stunning effects that simulate drawings, etchings, brush painting, and woodcuts.
  • No Hand Masking or Rotoscoping: Each toon effect is generated automatically. While there are customizable controls in the plugin, no manual work is needed to achieve desired results.
  • Customizable Looks: With 50+ parameters available to adjust the plugin results, there are many possible approaches to get the best result for different types of imagery.
  • 64-bit Support: Works with Windows Vista 64-bit (Vista x64) and Photoshop CS4 64-bit.
  • Works In Most Photoshop Modes: Supports RGB, CMYK, and Grayscale in 8-bit, 16-bit and 32-bit.

Pricing & Availability

Regularly priced at USD $159, ToonIt! Photo 2.0 will be available for USD $129 through December 22, 2008. The filters work in Photoshop 7.0 and higher, including CS4 64-bit, and Photoshop Elements 5.0 and higher. ToonIt! for Photoshop supports Macintosh OS 10.3.9 and higher, and runs natively on Intel Macs and PPCs. The product supports Windows 2000, XP Home, XP Pro, Vista 32-bit and Vista 64-bit systems. Demo filters and samples are available at www.digitalanarchy.com.

About Digital Anarchy

Digital Anarchy is a privately owned company in San Francisco that creates high-quality creative software for professional photographers, Photoshop artists and graphic designers. Since 2001, our tools have solved a wide range of design issues, from masking out bluescreens for commercial still photography to generating custom lighting effects. Digital Anarchy products work in conjunction with Adobe Photoshop, PS Elements, and related design applications. For more information, please see the company's website at www.digitalanarchy.com or call 415-586-8434.

Happy Holidays From Toolfarm! The 12 Days of Freebies Starts Today!

Image NameThe new Toolfarm Holiday Card is here!

Our gift to you. We will be unlocking a new freebie each weekday until December 24th. Freebies will include templates, project files, stock footage, and more; stay tuned!

Check out holiday card day one.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Red Giant Software Launches Red Giant TV

red giantRed Giant Software Launches Red Giant TV with Aharon Rabinowitz

San Francisco, CA, December 8, 2008 - Red Giant Software, with popular products including Magic Bullet, Knoll Light Factory and Trapcode, today launched the beta version of Red Giant TV. Noted expert in the video and animation industry, Aharon Rabinowitz will host the show. Each month Aharon will offer free tips and tutorials, which will be broadcast on the Red Giant Software web site. Aharon's ability to present technical information in a dynamic, entertaining, and understandable manner has earned him the reputation as a renowned trainer and an expert in motion graphics.

Red Giant TV will help users get the most out of Red Giant Software's library of video products. Viewers will learn how to produce complex motion graphics and visual effects. The shows will feature one or more Red Giant products used in combination with the tools built-in to After Effects, Final Cut Pro, Premiere Pro, and more. Aharon's techniques are geared to help Red Giant's users produce higher quality work in less time.

"Aharon is a very well-known trainer and animation designer. His breadth of experience will be invaluable to pros and novices alike. We hope that our current users will find his shows to be both entertaining and informative," said Andrew Little, co-founder of Red Giant Software.

About Red Giant TV


Users can tune into Red Giant TV by visiting the Red Giant Software website: http://tv.redgiantsoftware.com

In the near future, we will add podcast versions and RSS feeds to keep users up to date with the latest episodes. In addition, users can find commentary and provide feedback at the Red Room blog: http://www.redgiantsoftware.com/blog.

About Aharon Rabinowitz

With over a decade of industry knowledge and experience in broadcast and multimedia, Aharon has a broad view of the entire video production process. He started off as a production intern at Sesame Street, and has since served as Animation Designer, Producer, and Technical Manager for several networks and production companies, before eventually founding his own company, All Bets Are Off Productions.

Aharon has served as a Technology Commentator for National Public Radio, has trained video professionals around the world, and has taught advanced animation courses at NYC's Pratt Manhattan.

In addition, he is the host of several Creative Cow Master Series Training DVD's, co-hosted the highly acclaimed Creative Cow After Effects Podcasts, and is the co-founder of Adobe After Effects New York, the world's largest software user group.

About Red Giant Software

Red Giant Software LLC (http://www.redgiantsoftware.com/) is a San Francisco-based company that develops professional tools for digital video production. Products are available as plug-ins for popular video editing and effects applications, including After Effects, Final Cut Pro, Motion, Premiere Pro, and Avid. All tools are based on production-proven technology developed by visual effects veterans.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Genarts Releases Sapphire Plug-ins v3 for Avid Editing Systems

SapphireAvailable immediately, new version features 36 new effects and many enhancements

Cambridge, MA. December 2, 2008 -- GenArts, Inc., a leading provider of visual effects software for the film, broadcast and video industries, today announced the release of version 3 of its Sapphire Plug-ins for the Avid® AVXTM architecture. The new version includes several new features to help editors working on Avid Media Composer®, Symphony™ or NewsCutter® systems to enhance their content with powerful visual effects tools.

With this announcement, GenArts is responding to demand and strengthening its offering to the Avid community by adding 36 new effects, dozens of improvements to existing effects and expanded options. These additions allow for deeper integration and support for Avid solutions and give the Avid community even more stunning visual effects and simplified processes. For example, many Avid editors previously built transitions using a series of Sapphire effects that have now been reworked into 13 new single-step, drag and drop Transitions. There are also new innovative effects such as TVDamage, which simulates various artifacts of television broadcast and display such as static, ghosting and interference, and Technicolor 2Strip and 3Strip, which give the look of 1930-1955 Technicolor film. Other new practical additions include Deband, which removes banding artifacts from a clip by diffusing pixels across the banded areas while keeping the original edges intact.

Ken Miles, director of business development at Avid Technology, Inc. said, "GenArts has always shown a strong commitment to the Avid user community by providing high quality, innovative software that integrates seamlessly with Avid products. With today's announcement, Avid customers now have several new and improved effects that we are sure to see in more blockbuster films, TV shows and commercials."

"GenArts has seen Sapphire Plug-ins expand the workflow of Avid artists over the past eight years that it's supported the platform," said Katherine Hays, CEO of GenArts, Inc. "Taking our Avid customers' ever-changing needs into account, an important step in our ongoing innovation, we have further enhanced our product offerings to Avid's user base with this new release."

Key new features in Sapphire Plug-ins v3 for Avid:
  • 36 new effects including: TVDamage, Deband, WarpCornerPin, GradientMulti, Shape, Technicolor2Strip, Technicolor3Strip, BlurDirectional, ZDefocus, ZBlur, ZGlow, Swish3D, TVChannelChange, WipePlasma, WipePointalize, WipeWeave, WipeMoire, DissolveLensFlare, DissolveEdgeRays, DissolveGlint, DissolveGlintRainbow, DissolveDefocus, DissolveTiles, DissolveDistort, TextureFlux, TextureLoops, TextureNeurons, TextureTiles, TileScramble, Convolve, ConvolveComp, ZConvolve, Light3D, TriTone, QuadTone, ShowBadColors
  • New enhancements and options including 15 new LensFlares, Improved Glares and revamped RackDefocus.
  • Support for Windows Vista and 64bit systems
  • Supports promotion of previous Sapphire versions to v3

As with all GenArts products, version 3 offers quick and easy application of high quality, organic effects to Avid sequences, an easy to use interface with on-screen control widgets for efficient workflow, single click application of effects to titles and keys, seamless transition of effects from offline to online Avid systems, compatibility with any resolution setting, multiple options and parameters that can be adjusted and animated to create an unlimited range of unique results, online hyper-linked documentation, and RGBA support for all Avid editing products.

Availability and Pricing:
Learn more/purchase Sapphire Plug-ins version 3 for Avid systems. Pricing for Sapphire 3 is: $1800 for Avid Media Composer Software-only; $2800 for Symphony, Media Composer, NewsCutter or DS Assist; and $4800 for Avid DS or DS/Symphony. Existing version 2 customers qualify for special upgrade pricing of $600, $900 and $1600, respectively. A free trial is available.

About Avid Technology, Inc.
Avid is a worldwide leader in tools for film, video, audio and broadcast professionals - as well as for home audio and video enthusiasts. Avid professional and consumer brands include Avid®, Digidesign®, M-Audio®, Pinnacle Systems®, Sibelius® and Sundance Digital®. The vast majority of primetime television shows, feature films, commercials and chart-topping music hits are made using one or more Avid products. Whether used by seasoned professionals or beginning students, Avid's products and services enable customers to work more efficiently, productively and creatively. For more information about the company's Oscar®, Grammy® and Emmy® award-winning products and services, visit www.avid.com.

About GenArts

Founded in 1996 in Cambridge, Mass., GenArts, Inc. is the premier provider of digital visual effects plug-ins for the film, broadcast and video industries. Their product, Sapphire Plug-ins, equips digital artists with a collection of over 200 state-of-the-art image processing and synthesis effects such as: Glows, EdgeRays, LensFlare, Lightning, FilmEffect, Warps and Textures. The effects seamlessly integrate into a number of editing and compositing systems from Adobe, Apple, Avid, Autodesk, Assimilate, Digital Vision, Eyeon, FilmLight, The Foundry, Quantel and SGO.

Sapphire Plug-ins have become the industry standard for high-end visual effects creation by providing unrivaled image quality, a unique organic look, and ease of use. They have been used extensively in an array of television programs, music videos and feature films, including Iron Man, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, The Hulk, Spider-Man 1, 2 and 3, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Star Wars - Episode I, II and III, Sin City, The Matrix trilogy, X-Men 1, 2 and 3, Titanic, Lost and CSI. Additional GenArts product information can be found at www.genarts.com.

New Boris Continuum Complete Unit: Optical Stabilizer

bccBoris Continuum Complete's Optical Stabilizer filter uses optical flow technology to analyze a shaky clip and then adjusts the track's position to compensate. Unlike many stabilizing tools, the Boris Continuum Optical Stabilizer does not require you to set user-defined tracking points; this lets you stabilize images where tracking data is unreliable. You may also stabilize just a portion of a track to correct isolated camera bumps.

The Optical Stabilizer Unit is now available for $99! Buy Now for Mac or Win. Each Unit seamlessly integrates with Adobe After Effects, Apple Final Cut Pro, and Apple Motion. If you buy a Boris Continuum Unit, you may later credit the price of the Unit towards the purchase of the full Boris Continuum Complete plug-in suite.

Watch Boris Podcasts to learn how to remove camera shake with BCC Optical Stabilizer!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Great After Effects Mac/Windows Smackdown: CS4 Edition

Kevin Schmitt has an article about After Effects CS4 benchmarks at DigitalMediaNet. Leopard vs. Vista. If you're a Mac user, you may not want to read it. "Cripes, the Mac OS X version of After Effects is absolutely smoked again, and the results are slightly worse than last time in places."

Avidion Real3D Professional now available

XENIA, OH. NOVEMBER 25, 2008. Avidion Media today announced the release of its After Effects plug-in Real3D Professional for both Macintosh and PC. This innovative plug-in lets users take their 3D experience to a new level by allowing layers and masks to bend shatter and twist within After Effects own 3D environment.

Real3D Professional builds upon the original Real3D and now allows users to render After Effects masks in 3D and provides flexible and creative ways of manipulating and animating the mask movements. Together with this, Real3D Professional adds other great features including additional render modes, transfer modes, 3D fractal fields, and increased performance to this already powerful tool.

The new professional version also comes with the following great features:

  • Support for rendering and animating masks
  • 3D Fractal noise engine
  • Improved hardware accelerated rendering
  • Powerful Duplicator
  • Additional transfer mode and options
  • Support for rendering large compositions even with a low end graphics card
  • Presets to get you started


Availability and System Requirements
Avidion Real3D is now available for $95 USD and is free to users of Real3D. Real3D is compatible with Adobe After Effects 7.0 and up for Windows; CS3 and up for Mac. Users must have an OpenGL compatible Graphics card.

NewBlueFX Paint Effects and Paint Blends Available

We have 2 new versatile and affordable product packages from NewBlueFX: Paint effect packages and transitions for Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, Avid Liquid, and Sony Vegas.

paint effectsMake your video to look like a painting, drawing, or cartoon with NewBlue Paint Effects. This valuable collection features 134 presets in 12 distinct video effects designed to transform your scenes with artistic color and captivating paint techniques.

paint blendsUse painting, drawing and cartoon techniques to create exciting scene transitions with NewBlue Paint Blends. This valuable collection of transitions features a set of 124 presets in 12 distinct video transitions designed to transform your transitions with artistic color and captivating paint techniques.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Interview with Sean Safreed of Red Giant

michele yamazaki & sean safreed

Michele Yamazaki of Toolfarm & Sean Safreed at the Trapcode Party, NAB 2007. Not the best photo, I know...

Studio Daily has a Q&ampA with Sean Safreed, co-founder, owner and manager of Red Giant Software. Sean discusses the acquisition of the Digital Anarchy video plug-ins and the future of Red Giant. Read it now!

The Plug-In Post: Saved by the Duck

pro import aeStudio Daily has an interesting user story about managing multiple workflows that use FCP, Avid and After Effects!

The film, a romantic comedy called The Other End of the Line, directed by Jim Dodson, was shot in both the U.S. and India.

"We were really under the gun with this project," says Dodson. "But with Automatic Duck Pro Import AE, we were able to import 250 layers from Final Cut into After Effects with all the stacks in place and in the right order. Without the plug-in, we wouldn't have made it in time to Cannes."

The Duck also saved Dodson time when creating an HD online in Final Cut Pro of the trailer, originally created by an outside shop on the Avid. "Automatic Duck Pro Export FCP read in the Avid timeline and gave us a flawless Final Cut sequence," he says.

LME 100 Cool Flash FLV Backgrounds Vol 1

#019 from 100 Cool Flash Background Movie Elements

LME 100 Cool Flash FLV Backgrounds is now available. LME has created a collection of 100 eye popping Flash movies in .flv format that can be used as background elements in Flash projects for corporate, business, personal websites and banners for Flash designers.

The collection is comprised of new motion graphics and many converted animations taken from our popular After Effects collections.

Ask Matt Silverman: Deinterlace / Removing Pulldown

Matt SilvermanMatt Silverman was recently asked a question regarding unsatisfactory results with deinterlacing in After Effects. The customer's footage had the following workflow

  1. Shot at 35mm
  2. Telecine color correct transfered to NTSC Digibeta
  3. Digitized to Avid Nitris DX at 1:1 MXF
  4. Exported to 29.97 NTSC TIFF sequence
  5. Imported into After Effects
  6. Deinterlaced with interpret fields or with BCC Deinterlace

The customer complained about soft results with loss of detail, most apparent in hair, teeth and clothing textures. What would Matt Silverman do?

Matt: Sounds like he does not want to de-interlace, but rather remove pulldown (assuming film was shot 24fps). So, he should bring the footage into AE, go to interpret footage, and click "guess pulldown". This should find the correct pulldown cadence for the first shot and make the clip 23.976fps progressive. If he has edited the show in Avid, more than likely the pulldown cadences will vary from shot to shot, which is a huge pain in the ass to deal with. Here is how I have dealt with this.... I have only done this on TV spots, so there aren't many cuts... a longer show could take a while...

  1. Import the footage five times into AE, rename the clips in the project window A,B,C,D,E
  2. Go to interpret footage on each shot and choose a different pulldown cadence for each (this makes each clip 23.976fps).
  3. Drop the "A" clip into a new 23.976fps comp.
  4. Use the Magnum Script from aescripts.com to find the cut points and split the clip into individual layers per shot.
  5. Drag through the clips in the timeline to see if there are any random interlaced frames. When you find an interlaced frame, it means that it is using the wrong pulldown cadence. Select this bad clip in the timeline, then grab the B version from the project window and option-drag it into the timeline to replace the bad one. Scrub through to see if there is still an interlaced frame. If so, repeat the option drag with the other versions in the project window until the interlacing disappears.
  6. Check all of your cut points to make sure there are no half fields showing on the first or last frame.
If I did not understand and he truly wants to de-interlace, then Red Giant Magic Bullet Frames or RE:Vision Effects FieldsKit are the tickets. I usually go to FieldsKit first... they now have a motion estimation option. Sometimes it might produce a weird artifact and Bullet works better.

Matt Silverman is a Toolfarm Forum Expert and Creative Director of Design and Digital Effects at Phoneix Editorial in San Francisco.

MGFest09 Call For Entry - 3 Ways to Enter!

Late Entry Deadline : Dec 19

Submit a Link + Submit a Movie + Submit a Topic
http://mgfest.com/09/call.php

[ Easy ] Submit a Link
Simply enter a link to a video you think is really good!

Online voters will select the top videos in several caregories. If your video is selected you will reveive a free badge to the Motion Graphics Festival.

[ Medium ] Submit a Video
Send us a DVD of a video you made. Late Entry Deadline: Dec 19, 2008

Send us your finest minutes, your dreams realized, your fictions animated, your adventures recorded, your sweat and passion woven into something of beauty, and we will take it to audiences across the country. Selections will be screened during the 6th annual Motion Graphics Festival tour in Chicago, Boston, Austin, Atlanta and Washington DC.

[ Hard ] Submit a Topic
Suggest a presentation topic, performance or installation.

No Entry Fee. Just let us know what's on your mind. Our three themes are: New Motion, New Sound and New Media. Be a presenter, performer or panel/discussion leader. We are looking for presentation topics, technologies, abstracts, essays, performances, art installations, events, groups, conceptual meanderings and just plain smart fun.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Trapcode/Knoll Light Factory Templates from Rerendered

A perfect compliment to the Red Giant Motion Graphics Bundle that is 50% Off today, and for the Trapcode Suite and Reality Bundle from earlier in the week, we bring you Rerendered templates for Adobe After Effects. These are gorgeous and inexpensive and can of course, be reverse engineered. Click the movie you like to see the template





Thursday, November 20, 2008

Apple Pro Apps update for RED and RED updates for FCS

When it rains it pours!

Pro Applications Update 2008-04 Release Notes

Pro Applications Update 2008-04 addresses general performance issues and improves overall stability.

Applications included in the update:

  • Final Cut Pro 6.0.5
  • Compressor 3.0.5
  • Color 1.0.3
  • Shake 4.1.1

Read more on Final Cut User blog and thanks Jim G. for the IM.

Premiere Pro CS4 4.0.1 Help is live

They've updated the site with the new features of PPRO 4.0.1, including OMF Export, working with XML files from Final Cut Pro and working with Red Camera.

The supported languages

Adobe Releases Premiere Pro CS4 v.4.0.1

Introduces Final Cut Pro project import, RED camera compatibility, OMF export, and other enhancements

premiere ProToday, Adobe Systems Incorporated introduced Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 software, a major update to the leading start-to-finish professional video production solution. A pivotal component of Adobe Creative Suite 4 Production Premium, Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 leads the way in delivering open, flexible post-production workflows by providing virtually seamless project exchange with Final Cut Pro, Digidesign Pro Tools, and Avid workflows. Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 enables users to import Final Cut Pro projects via XML interchange, export to Open Media Framework (OMF) format, and import and export projects in Advanced Authoring Format (AAF). Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 also offers significant performance and stability enhancements, including full support for 64-bit computing platforms to accelerate compute-intensive post-production tasks.

Top new features in Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 include:

  • More flexible, open workflows: Editors who are using Final Cut Pro, Digidesign Pro Tools, and Avid solutions can now more easily tap the high level of integration and unique features offered in Adobe Creative Suite 4 Production Premium. Final Cut Pro users can transfer projects directly to Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 without conversions or re-rendering, preserving commonly used effects and transitions. Once files are in Adobe Premiere Pro CS4, features such as Adobe Dynamic Link provide tighter-than-ever integration when moving assets among Adobe After Effects CS4, Adobe Premiere Pro CS4, and Soundbooth CS4, saving invaluable time that would otherwise be spent in intermediate rendering. To help users manage footage, Speech Search in Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 turns spoken dialog into text-based metadata that makes video searchable. Project output can be delivered virtually anywhere, including exporting through Adobe Encore CS4 to Blu-ray, DVD, and the Web. Customers can also streamline audio editing by exporting audio in OMF for interchange with audio workstations, and then importing the final mix back into Adobe Premiere Pro CS4. Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 also includes enhanced AAF project interchange for improved integration with high-end workflows and tools.
  • Native RED R3D support: Both Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 and Adobe After Effects CS4 version 9.0.1 provide a true file-based workflow for RED R3D files, without transcoding or rewrapping, via RED’s beta plug-in available at www.red.com/support . Native handling of RED R3D augments Adobe’s existing support of Sony XDCAM EX, Panasonic P2, and AVCHD tapeless formats, providing users with software-only HD workflows from capture to output. In addition to downloading the RED plug-in, customer must update their software to Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 and Adobe After Effects CS4 version 9.0.1, accessible for free throughout the Adobe update manager in the Help menu of the applications. To learn more about RED workflows with Adobe video solutions go to: www.adobe.com/products/premiere/pdfs/red_adobe_cs4_beta.pdf
  • Faster performance and responsiveness, with full support for 64-bit computing platforms to accelerate compute-intensive post-production tasks. Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 version 4.0.1 is architected to take advantage of the additional memory available in 64-bit systems. In addition, version 4.0.1 includes numerous performance enhancements in all areas of the workflow.

Adobe fires another shot across Apple’s bow

premiere proScott Simmons has an article up at Studio Daily, Adobe fires another shot across Apple's bow, about Premiere Pro's latest update to version 4.0.1. It's a HUGE update for just a single point, as Scott says, it should be Premiere Pro 4.1. I was taking with David Helmly from Adobe a couple of weeks ago and he was telling me about the new features in PPRO 4.0.1 and I agree, its a huge update.

What are the biggest new features?

  • Adobe's RED support.
  • The ability to import a Final Cut Pro XML
  • Export audio to OMF

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Tutorial: Bootleg #3 for After Effects on AdobeTV

On The Genesis Project blog Dennis Radeke says: "During this episode, I use a couple of presets along with a little Turbulent Displace and CC Vector Blur to make something cool."

Pixel Aspect Ratio Tutorial for CS4

Check out this free video tutorial from Lynda.com AE CS4: New PARs (Pixel Aspect Ratios) (pops). He gets pretty technical, but man, this explains a lot.

CHV releases Svengali Rays Lite (FREE!) and Pro

Two plugin packages to create titles with realistic 3D volumetric light effects.

CHV-electronics, software developer of plugins for Final Cut Pro, Final Cut Express and Motion announced today the release of two new plugin packages.

CHV Svengali volumetric light engine is different from the engines of any other light spill plugin. Svengali Rays produces a realistic looking 3D volumetric light effect that attaches the light spill effect directly to the titles without the usual gap. This feature is the key to create a realistic volumetric light spill effect.

svengali rays compSvengali Rays comes as a completely free "Lite" version and a highly sophisticated "Pro" version with many additional features.

Both plugin packages are based on CHV's QC Integration FX Quartz Composer plugin platform. QC Integration FX needs to be installed to run Svengali Rays Lite and Svengali Rays Pro.

Svengali Rays Lite is a video title generator with a built in 3D volumetric light spill effect engine and works with the demo version of the QC Integration FX plugin platform without a demo watermark.

Svengali Rays Pro consists of two plugins, a video title generator and a video filter, both with a built in enhanced 3D volumetric light spill effect engine. Svengali Rays Pro shows a watermark if unlicensed. The plugin platform QC Integration FX needs to be installed, but must not be licensed to run Svengali Rays Pro.

All FxPlug plugin packages from CHV-electronics are GPU-accelerated, using the full power of the installed graphics adapter for direct feedback and fast rendering.

You can download a free demo of either Svengali Rays Pro or download Free Lite through our demo form.

Tutorial: Use Expressions to Speed up Text in AE

Harry Frank has a video up at Studio Daily about Using expressions to speed up lower third creation in After Effects. He explains how to create a document that links to the text document with corresponding scene numbers... a very cool way to speed up simple but tedious work. It's not difficult, but this is definitely not something you'd figure out yourself, unless you're a javascript programmer, or a whiz with expressions.

Also, Harry's Complete training for Trapcode Particular from Class on Demand is half price this week. (DVD | Download), during our One Day Sale. Also, if you haven't heard, Trapcode Suite is 50% off today only!

NVIDIA + Adobe = CS4 on Steroids

NVIDIANVIDIA recently came out with the Quadro CX which is OpenGL GPU accelerated for Adobe CS4. I'm not a hardware person, but if you're an Adobe CS4 user, this will speed up render time and working in Photoshop, Premiere Pro and of course After Effects by 4x. The NVIDIA card and CS4 have a symbiotic relationship. Adobe CS4 has built-in acceleration for the NVIDIA Quadro CX.

In After Effects specifically, you can play with the camera's Depth of Field with true interactivity because it's OpenGL GPU accelerated. I don't know about you but that's one thing that always slows me down. It allows you to render not only the main composition but the entire hierarchy of precomps through GPU excelleration. The new AE CS4 effects, Turbulent Noise, Cartoon and Bilateral Blur, also render at lightning speeds.

Dennis Radeke has an article on his Genesis Project blog, nvidia and Adobe = match made in heaven. Dennis says:

The cherry on the top for me is the inclusion of Elemental's plugin. This plug-in makes h.264 encoding just plain fast. To me, if you do H.264 encoding, than you should just get this card for the software. It's fast, its GPU enabled and its designed for CS4. What's not to like?

I can tell you what is not to like... it is Windows only! If you're on Windows, check it out. If you're on Mac, hopefully NVIDIA will make one for you and me. I don't see myself getting a Dell anytime soon :-)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Cycore Systems release CFX Path Tools and CFX Sphere Utilities for Adobe After Effects

cycore fx

Cycore Systems, the creators of Final Effects and Cult Effects, today announced two brand new effect packages for Adobe After Effects, the "CFX Path Tools" and "CFX Sphere Utilities". All effects support float and are available for After Effects CS4, CS3 and 7.0 on Mac (Universal Binaries) and Windows.

CFX Path Tools contain two plug-ins utilizing After Effects mask paths. Wiggle Stroke wiggles and repeats a stroke based on a mask path in near infinite ways. Rakka is a tool for handling multiple repetitions of a layer that can be animated along a mask path and has multiple controls for designing flow and characteristics.

CFX Sphere Utilities is a set of four plug-ins designed to deal with spherical maps (equirectangular maps) commonly used to texture 3D spheres or as 3D environments. Animating layers and drawing lines on spherical maps are a breeze when Sphere Utilities handles the spherical transformations required. The coordinate system can be turned, twisted or aligned to an AE 3D camera, using Remap.

"You will be truly amazed with what can be created from just an ellipse or straight line mask path," said Jonatan Andersson, Director of Operations at Cycore Systems. Path Tools and Sphere Utilities fulfill our promise to customers to deliver technology breakthroughs, while also delivering time-saving features that help them manage client demands."

CFX Path Tools | Free Demo

Rakka, in its most basic form, functions as a timesaver for creating repeated path animations with an offset for each instance. This task currently involves writing complex expressions or a lot of manual work, duplicating the layer several times and doing the offset by hand. This innovation only scratches the surface of Rakka's potential. Rakka can be used to create anything from swirling lines to bands of pearls, from a caterpillar moving across the screen to highly organic "HR Giger like" animations.

Wiggle Stroke
offers numerous possibilities. Create anything from basic "wiggling" of frames to completely crazy-looking thread or geometric wire animations. Wiggle Stroke uses three types of modifiers to displace a stroke from the original mask path: basic noise, wave noise and wave functions. Each type has a variety of options to vary the appearance. Wiggling can be applied to position, radius and opacity individually.

CFX Sphere Utilities | Free Demo

Need to animate a line going from Seattle to Uppsala or animate an airplane flying from Melbourne to LA crossing the date line? Sphere Utilities is the answer. Crossing the date line is a task that currently involves a lot of manual work, duplication of the layer and hand-matching the motion. These animations can then be used directly in After Effects with CC Sphere, or any other plug-in that supports spherical mapping, or in your favourite 3D application. Spherical maps are also used as environment maps and for panoramic viewers, which are other sources where this kind of capability is important. Animating layers and drawing lines on spherical maps is a breeze when Sphere Utilities handles the spherical transformations required. The coordinate system can be turned, twisted or aligned to an AE 3D camera.

MapLine is used to draw or animate lines on spherical maps.

Mappit is used to place or animate any user-selected layer on spherical maps.

Remap provides a unique ability to realign the coordinate system of spherical maps.

MapDots generates a pattern of evenly distributed dots on a spherical map.

Pricing and Availability


Both packages are available now. A single user license costs $199 for CFX Path Tools and $99 for CFX Sphere Utilities.

About Cycore Systems


Cycore Systems AB is a graphics software company headquartered in Uppsala, Sweden. Founded in 2005 by former Cycore employees, the company develops special effects software for the film and video industries and is one of the largest providers of third party plug-ins for Adobe After Effects.

New Photoshop Tutorials from Digital Anarchy

Digital Anarchy is fully focused on their Photoshop plug-ins and have some new tutorials on their site which use Knoll Light Factory for Photoshop.

Creating Volumetric Light (pops) - We all know the look of a beam of light bursting through the clouds or coming from the top of a dusty (and otherwise dark) cave. Usie Knoll Light Factory in conjunction with some of Photoshop's built-in filters to create this look very easily.

Blurring Elements (pops) - On high resolution images, Knoll's light flares sometimes show thin lines that don't look realistic. This tutorial talks about ways to deal with this problem and produce natural looking lens flares. This movie may take a few minutes to load.

Coremelt Releases CoreMelt Complete Bundle

coremelt complete CoreMelt Complete includes ALL 4 CoreMelt plugins packs: ImageFlow Fx, PolyChrome Transitions, Motion Pack and Editing Pack. For Final Cut Studio, Final Cut Express and AE CS3/CS4.

In total providing you with over 130 screamingly fast GPU accelerated plugins aimed at streamlining your motion graphics and video effect, to allow you to be more creative.

coremelt lineup

ImageFlow FX 1.5
Create stunning image montage animations instantly in After
Effects CS3, Final Cut Studio or Final Cut Express. Select a
folder of images, select the animation style and hit play. No
rendering and no complex setup. Perfect for Wedding and
Event videographers, just select your folder of still photos from
the event and instantly have animations with custom frames and
borders.

PolyChrome Transitions 1.1
A collection of 43 transition effects to enhance your creative
possibilities in FCP editing. All transitions render in high precision
color for 10 bit online workflows for those working with footage
from the RED camera or or other high color precision sources.

Editing Pack 1.1
Forty Plugins for working cutters. Designed by an online editor
and vfx artist with 10 years experience on broadcast TVC,
Motion Graphics, Music Videos and Feature Films.

Motion Pack 1.1

Forty Plugins for Motion Graphic Artists. Designed by a working
VFX artist with 10 years experience on broadcast TVC, Motion
Graphics, Music Videos and Feature Films.

Download a free demo.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Digieffects Ships Simulate: Camera

The second plugin package in the Simulate series mimics camera and projection artifacts

simulate:cameraWilmington, NC - November 18, 2008 - Digieffects, a developer of popular visual effects software plugins today announced that it has shipped Simulate: Camera, a plugin package offering a specialized collection of effects for mimicking camera and projection artifacts. All Digieffects plugins support Adobe CS4.

Simulate: Camera includes the following effects:

Archive:A straightforward "film degradation/contamination" type effect.

Overexpose: An excellent way to add a sense of dynamic to otherwise stable and predictable footage.

Destabilize: An effect that is useful for emulating a practical camera shake.

"These effects, like many of the latest releases and upcoming releases from Digieffects are designed to be straightforward, affordable, every-day usable staples of visual post production.", says Robert Sharp, President of Digieffects.

Simulate: Camera, as with all Digieffects software launched after January 2008, has the following two unique features which will appeal to customers.

Randomizer: The Randomizer is part of the Digieffects custom User Interface. When clicked, multiple parameters within the interface will simultaneously adjust causing completely new results. Once a customer sees a look they like, they can use that as a starting point and manually tweak the parameters to achieve a specific effect. This serves as a massive timesaver for our time-pressed customers.

Presets: The unique aspect of the Digieffects presets is their portability. Once you've saved your effect parameters, these can be moved between supported host applications.

Download a free demo today!

About Digieffects
Digieffects is a developer of popular visual effects plugins for Adobe After Effects, Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro and Autodesk Combustion. The company has been in the business since the beginning of the "plugin revolution" which dates back to 1996. Over the years, Digieffects has had great success with software products like Cinelook and Delirium and is proud to call thousands of film and video producers all around the world its customers and friends.

RE:Flex 3.1.6 for After Effects and combustion released

It was updated last week.

Pixel Bender for Photoshop is here!

John Nack's blog has a posting on the release of Pixel Bender gallery plug-in for Photoshop. John's main points about the plug-in:

  • It runs filters really, really fast on your graphics card (GPU)
  • The plug-in is not one filter, but rather a harness into which you can drop Pixel Bender files (.PBK and .PBG)
  • Pixel Bender also runs cross-platform in After Effects CS4 & Flash Player 10
  • The filters people write for Flash will also work in Photoshop
  • We should therefore see an explosion in the number of new Photoshop filters becoming available

More plug-ins. Yeah!

Download Pixel Bender at Adobe Labs | Read more and see samples at John Nack on Adobe blog

Friday, November 14, 2008

Cineform Neo HD and Neo 4K for Mac now Available

CineForm Neo HD/4K Family Extends Compression-Based Post-Production Workflows for MacOS up to 4K Spatial Resolution. Native Mac Support for QuickTime Applications Offers Format Conversions and Telecine Removal, Plus Broad Camera Support Including Red One and Grass Valley Infinity

Solana Beach, CA- November 11, 2008- CineForm®, Inc., creators of high-fidelity compression-based workflow solutions for the post production marketplace, today announced availability of its Neo™ HD and Neo 4K™ software products for Mac OS X. Neo HD/4K for Mac extend CineForm's industry-renowned workflow solutions to all QuickTime-based video editing and content creation applications for the Mac platform up to 4K spatial resolution, including Final Cut Pro, Motion, After Effects, and others. Differing only in the spatial resolutions they support, both products offer CineForm's respected compression-based technologies, including its Active Metadata™ architecture for renderless color workflows, plus numerous format conversion utilities in support of most HDV, HD, 2K, and 4K cameras on the market. Separately, CineForm today also announced 4K post-production support for the RED ONE™ digital cinema camera on both Windows and Mac- using Neo 4K Mac and also Prospect 4K™ on Windows.

"CineForm's compression-based workflows have become respected as industry leaders for their high visual fidelity and versatility for film and television content creation", said David Taylor, CEO of CineForm. "But our bigger goal has been to enable seamless workflows across Windows and Mac platforms, and between standard industry applications like Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, and others. Using Neo HD or Neo 4K for Mac, our customers can now easily capture, edit, and share media during post-production with colleagues who may be using different applications on Mac, or who may be using Windows."

About Neo HD and Neo 4K for Mac

Cineform Neo 4K supports up to 4096 x 4096 spatial resolution with 12-bit precision, and is intended for "online" editing using Final Cut Pro or other Mac-based non-linear editors with no need for proxy files or conforming. Neo 4K also supports 12-bit CineForm RAW, its compression format for the emerging class of high-resolution digital cinema cameras such as Silicon Imaging's SI-2K and Red One. Cineform Neo HD supports up to 1920 x 1080 spatial resolution, and supports virtually all HD cameras on the market including Grass Valley's JPEG 2000-based Infinity camcorder. Both products support CineForm's 10-bit YUV and 12-bit CineForm 444 (RGB) compression formats. Apple's ProRes is offered as an optional compression format when Final Cut Studio 2 is installed. Further, Neo HD/4K both include:

  1. CineForm's ReMaster application which provides image/video pre-processing plus camera and file conversion functions. ReMaster supports numerous camera source formats including HDV, DVCPro HD, XDCam HD/EX, Red One R3D files, and others. Among other features, ReMaster can extract 24p (progressive frame) signals that are embedded in 60i (interlace) recordings to enable 24p editing workflows and resample non-square resolution video formats into common square pixel formats. ReMaster will write converted files into CineForm QuickTime files or optionally into Apple's ProRes format.

  2. SetActiveMetadata, an application that manages CineForm's Active Metadata architecture for non-destructive color workflows without rendering.

Neo 4K and Neo HD are both available for download as fully-functional 15-day trials.

About CineForm and CineForm Intermediate
CineForm Inc. develops compression-based workflow solutions for the post production marketplace. Offering the industry's highest fidelity compression technology, CineForm is trusted among Hollywood filmmakers, television producers, videographers and digital media artists who rely on high image quality, high performance and innovative compression-based workflow solutions with up to 4k spatial resolutions for their online content creation projects. Available on both Windows and Mac platforms, CineForm workflow solutions are optimized for direct-to-disk camera recording, high-resolution post production and long-term content archives. For more information, visit www.cineform.com.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Digital Anarchy Announces Knoll Light Factory for Windows 64-bit and Adobe Photoshop CS4

Free Update of Knoll 3.0.2 is the First Digital Anarchy Product to be Released for Vista x64

San Francisco, CA - September 24th, 2008 - Digital Anarchy, known for its high quality creative software in the Photoshop market, today announced the full compatibility of their popular Knoll Light Factory plugin with Adobe Photoshop CS4 and Windows Vista 64-bit (x64). Photoshop CS4 64-bit is streamlined to take advantage of the faster performance and better memory handling that Vista x64 supports. Digital Anarchy’s Knoll plugin, which enhances the lighting in Photoshop images to produce dramatic or natural effects, takes advantage of that speed and performance increase with version 3.0.2.

Jim Tierney, president of Digital Anarchy, said, "Photoshop CS4 is a big release for Adobe and Vista x64 offers the potential for greatly accelerated performance. The performance bar keeps being raised with the ever increasing size of digital images and incredible but processor intensive new CS4 features like Smart Filters. Making certain that our entire product line for photo manipulation performs well in Photoshop CS4 has been an important priority for us." 

Digital Anarchy's other Photoshop products have been fully tested to support Photoshop CS4 in both Mac and Windows 32-bit environments. These Digital Anarchy plugins will be updated for the Windows 64-bit environment in Q1 2009.

Knoll Light Factory 3.0.2 for Photoshop CS4

  • Improved performance: Version 3.0.2 supports 64-bit Windows (Vista x64).
  • Better usability: Version 3.0.2 has UI improvements and bug fixes.
  • Photo-realistic lighting effects: Used in films and TV to produce realistic lens flares and lights.
  • Real-Time Preview: The main Preview Window now supports real-time manipulation, as well as the ability to resize and zoom in/out.
  • 100+ Light Presets: There are now 110 great starting places when looking for that special flare.
  • 16-bit Color Support: Light effects now render out to higher bit depths, which reduces banding and outputs better looking glows and gradients.
  • Mac Intel compatible: Full support of all new operating systems.


All sales and support questions for Knoll Light Factory for Photoshop CS4 should be directed towards Digital Anarchy at digitalanarchy.com. All improvements, except Vista x64 support, are supported in Photoshop 7.0 and higher.

About Digital Anarchy

Digital Anarchy is a privately owned company in San Francisco that creates high-quality creative software for professional photographers, Photoshop artists and graphic designers. Since 2001, our tools have solved a wide range of design issues, from masking out bluescreens for commercial still photography to generating custom lighting effects. Digital Anarchy products work in conjunction with Adobe Photoshop, PS Elements, and related design applications. For more information, please see the company's website at www.digitalanarchy.com or call 415-586-8434.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sorenson Squeeze 5 MP4 Available Now!

squeezeSorenson Squeeze 5 MP4 is the perfect solution for customers that want to create professional video podcasts and high quality video content for upload to YouTube, mobile devices and more.

Built from the award winning professional encoding tool, Squeeze 5, Squeeze 5 MP4 lets you quickly import your video file, apply a variety of output formats (including special presets for high quality YouTube and Podcasting), enhance using powerful filters, and then Squeeze the video into small, high quality files that can be directly uploaded to ftp locations or sent to a local network location - right from within the application. Squeeze 5 MP4 delivers the highest quality H.264 codecs for the best quality video and smallest file size.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Tutorial: Creating Glitter With Boris Continuum Complete 5

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In this tutorial we'll use the BCC Glitter filter in the Adobe After Effects host to generate a glittering sky on an Artbeats stock video clip, against which we will create an animated title. The BCC Glitter filter is OpenGL hardware-accellerated and can be used to generate glittering sparkles of pretty much any size.

Monday, November 10, 2008

New Boris Continuum Unit: Glitters

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The new Boris Continuum Glitters Unit includes the following plug-ins:
  • Glint creates a sparkle or ray burst effect.
  • Glare creates an effect producing a sharp reflection.
  • Glitter creates a glittering or sparkling light effect.
Boris Continuum Glitters is available now for $99 USD, or you can download a free demo.

Boris Continuum Glitters supports Adobe After Effects, Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro, and Apple Motion. For Avid systems, the Glitters filters are included as part of Boris Continuum Complete AVX.

Toolfarm now carrying Video Copilot!

video copilotWe're very excited to be offering a few of the awesome products from Andrew Kramer and Video Copilot.

Red Giant Software Unveils Warp: Corner Pin, Shadow, and Reflection Tools

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San Francisco, CA, November 10, 2008 - Red Giant Software, publisher of the popular Magic Bullet, Knoll Light Factory and Trapcode products, today introduced Red Giant Warp. Adding a perfect shadow, a realistic reflection or working with distorted video can be tough. Red Giant Warp makes it easy to generate these effects quickly.

The three powerful plug-ins in the Warp toolset give users ultimate control over shadows, reflections and corner point warps. The Shadow tool renders realistic shadows for text or subjects shot on greenscreen, while the Reflection tool creates perfect mirror-like reflections. The advanced Corner Pin tool includes features for working with warped images, importing tracking data from Mocha for After Effects, and adding secondary transforms and motion blur-everything you need to heighten realism in any scene. Priced at $199, Warp is available for purchase from http://toolfarm.stores.yahoo.net/redgiantwarp10.html.

The capabilities of Red Giant Warp go far beyond those of its application hosts. Designed with input from real-world testers, Warp includes features such as dual-warp corner pinning with full motion blur support, 3D shadows with user-definable bending effects, and powerful reflection compositing that would be complex and time-consuming to generate by hand. With Warp, users can generate these realistic effects quickly and without complex compositing tricks.

Highlights



Pin with Precision

It's tough to take video from a warped source, such as a billboard shot in perspective, and add it to another video. But the dual warping tools in Warp's Corner Pin plug-in make it easy to take any video source, warped or not, and put it into a new place with proper perspective. With advanced offset controls and direct Mocha for After Effects integration, manipulating corner pins with tracking data couldn't be easier.

Play on the Dark Side

Adding depth is easy with the Shadow tool. Three point controls let users set the shadow perspective, and fade controls to create realistic falloff. A unique bend control can warp the shadow to create the illusion of shadows falling on two planes in 3D space.

Reflect your World

Adding a simple reflection is easy in most tools, but making it look real can be a challenge. Reflection provides an easy-to-use setup control for defining a mirror reflection for any source video or image. Extensive controls let you add fade-out or blur to make your reflection look sharp or diffuse.

For more information, visit Toolfarm's Plug-in Finder

Why Buy

  • Easy-to-use Shadow tool offers quality and features found nowhere else
  • Advanced Corner Pin features delivers the best tracking integration in any host
  • Reflection makes it a snap to add a simple mirror reflection to type or logos


Pricing and Availability

Red Giant Warp is available now for $199 USD and supports After Effects CS3/CS4, Premiere Pro CS3/CS4, Final Cut Pro, Motion, and Avid AVX 2 systems.