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!