David Vincent Clarke Ltd
Unit 11, Woodingdean Business Park,
Sea View Way, Brighton, BN2 6NX
Tel: 01273 205700
2nd July 2014
The brilliant new Panasonic GH4 still and video camera started shipping about a month ago but stocks have been very limited as it has been very popular. We have just had some more units in stock and can ship them immediately.
You can read more about the amazing GH4 and order it from our website: http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/Panasonic-Cameras.html
Many people have been asking us about 4K, what kind of cameras, are available, how can they edit it and what kind of computer is required. So we have started a 4K editing section on our website:http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/4K-editing-systems.html
Here you can see details of 4K screens we have tested at DVC, different cards that can output 4K from various editing programs, 4K cameras and how different editing programs edit 4K footage. You can also see and configure details of the kind of computer you need to edit 4K footage.
We will be developing this section further over the next few months, adding some videos about editing 4K footage and also changing details on how programs handle the various formats as the programs evolve.
You can also subscribe to our Facebook page for more regular updates.
We will be holding an open day at our offices in Brighton on Wednesday 6th August to show-case all the new things that have been happening in recent months. We will be concentrating on 4K, showing off the latest cameras from Blackmagic and Panasonic as well as talking about editing in EDIUS, Premiere Pro etc.
We are calling it the "4K open day" but there will still be plenty of useful information for people who have not moved to 4K and are not planning to do so soon.
As usual the open day will consists of a series of presentations in our main demo room, with members of staff on hand to discuss matters with you individually as well.
We have not finalised the schedule as yet but the topics we intend to cover will be:
- Filming, editing and output of 4K footage .
- Grass Valley EDIUS 7.3
- Premiere Pro CC2014
- Blackmagic 4K & Cinema cameras
- Panasonic's GH4 4K SLR camera
- DaVinci Resolve 11
- Avid Media Composer 8
Entry to the open day is free. You can register on our website where you can also let us know in which topics you are most interested. Based on your replies we will then post the final schedule for the main talks on the day.
We can fit a reasonable number of people in our offices but if we are heavily subscribed we may move the open day to a larger hall nearby, so please make sure you register so we can advise you if we do change the venue.
If you are coming also make sure to check out how to find us on the website:http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/dvc-woodingdean.html
We moved premises in November last year and the new offices have more parking and are easy to find, but we do want to make sure you don't go to the old offices!
We also plan to be broadcasting the open day live on YouTube as we did on our last open day in November. Full details on how to see the live feed will be posted in a forth coming newsletter. We will also record all the sessions and post those on our YouTube channel for viewing after the event.
You can register for the open day here:http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/Open_day.html
We look forward to seeing you.
Filming in 4K gives you brilliantly sharp pictures, although you cannot appreciate these properly without a 4K screen. UltraHD 4K screens are starting to become very reasonably priced. For the World Cup people like Currys were heavily promoting their range of 4K screens, and say they actually had a huge boost in people buying 4K screens, despite the fact that satellite transmissions are all currently only HD. This also means you can get a 40" or 50" UltraHD screen for under £1,000.
At DVC we needed a 4K screen for the BVE video show in February and bought a very nice Dell 24" UltraHD screen. We have been using this to monitor video pictures from our Blackmagic UltraStudio 4K and Blackmagic and Panasonic cameras but it can also be used as a 3840x2160 computer screen. Recently some new 28" screens have arrived and we have bought a Samsung 28" screen which suits us better for demos, where the bigger the screen the better, and so we are selling the 24" screen which we have had for the last 5 months.
Originally the screen cost £900 inc VAT and we are selling this ex-demo unit at £599 inc VAT.
We have information on both 4K screens on our website: http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/4K-Screens.html
The 28" model is actually cheaper than the 24" which may seem slightly strange when they are both the same resolutions and appear to be similar specifications. However the 24" screen is an "IPS" screen which means it gives a better quality picture with a better view angle, where as the 28" is a "TN" screen, and also technically inferior in a few other ways. For us the 28" is good enough to demonstrate the joys of 4K video and the larger size is better for demos.
We will have the 28" Samsung on display at our 4K open day so you can see for yourself and we may even have the 24" there as well if someone has not bought it by then!
You can order the 24" ex-demo screen here:http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/Dell-24_exdemo.html
Adobe have released updates for nearly all of their programs and introduced some new versions of different applications include and iPad version of Photoshop. These were unveiled on the 18th June and available to download for all CC subscribers on the same day.
There were a lot of changes and updates, we will just concentrate on Premiere Pro. The new update for Premiere includes some really exciting changes which include:
- Rectangular or oval masks on every effect, with motion tracking so you can get the effect to follow an object around the screen. This is great for things like applying an effect to a specific area (such as brightening someone's face) or for "witness protection" effects where you need to blur a persons face on screen.
- Live Text Templates from After Effects - make a fancy animated title in After Effects and you can load this into Premiere and simply adjust the text to make a new title.
- Master clips - apply an effect to a clip in the bin and it is applied to every timeline clip which uses that original media. Great for colour correcting multi-camera clips, for example.
- Support for adjusting exposure and colour balance settings on Blackmagic Cinema DNG files and support for DNG files produced by the Blackmagic pocket camera.
- Auto save projects to your Creative Cloud storage space.
- More small changes.
All the other CC programs have has a range of updates which includes Mercury Transmit support for After Effects, which changes the way that you can see a preview of an After Effects project on a monitor using a device like a Blackmagic or Matrox card so it matches the way Premiere works. This means you can now preview interlaced footage from After Effects - previously it has only previews in progressive.
All these updates are included as part of your Creative Cloud subscription. All you need to install them is to go to the Creative Cloud app and click on updates - it has probably been prompting you to do this since the 18th June.
New drivers for third party cards
You will need to update any drivers you have for a third party i.o. card if you have one (A Matrox MX02 or Blackmagic Intensity Pro, for example). The good news is that these are available now from both Matrox and Blackmagic.
The above are just a few of the extras with CC 2014 - there are a lot more. Adobe have covered them in depth on their website: http://creativecloud.adobeevents.com/ccnext/#/od-video/full
Should you update to the new version of Premiere Pro immediately?
As with any new version of a program there are going to be some bugs. Just because you are paying for the software monthly as opposed to in one payment up front this has not changed. Also Adobe are treating these new versions in a very similar way to previous ones. The last permanent licence version of Premiere Pro was CS6, you could think of the 2013 version of Creative Cloud as CS7 and this version as CS8 although their proper names are really CC 2013 and CC 2014. If you were not renting would you rush out to install the latest version of Premiere or wait for a few months for it to settle down and have some bugs fixed? We would recommend the latter unless you really want to use some of the new features in CC 2014.
There are some issues with Premiere Pro CC 2014 which mean we would not switch to it for every project:
- H.264 encoding problems. We have not been able to see this properly ourselves but it has been reported on the Forums that the H.264 encoding is not working properly in Premiere Pro CC 2014. Since H.264 is used for Blu-ray and MP4 files which are commonly used for output this is a major problem. This has been confirmed as a bug by Adobe. Other formats are not affected but if you regularly output to H.264 then we suggest you stick with Premiere Pro CC 2013 for now. You can see the thread on the Adobe forum where this is discussed in more detail here:https://forums.adobe.com/message/6477766#6477766
- Cannot sync settings ; many people are saying they cannot sync settings when they upgrade to CC 2014. This is irritating and but not the end of the world as you can just enter your custom keyboard shorts etc again in CC 2014.
- CC2014 no longer makes or imports Adobe FLV Flash files. Most video on the Internet is now in HTML5 or variations of MP4 files so Adobe have removed the ability to make or use Flash files. As this is not a bug it will never be changed of course, where as the two items above, together with many other smaller bugs will be fixed. However if you are using Flash files it is an important consideration as to whether to switch to CC2014 or not.
CC2014 installs all new applications. Why?
If you were going from CS7 to CS8 you would expect to have new applications and that is the same with CC2014. These are new versions of the program with quote a few things changed "behind the scenes". This also has some other effects:
- Projects opened in CC 2104 will not open in CC 2013 (just like Premiere CS6 cannot open projects made with CC2013). This means, for example, you cannot start a project in CC2014 and then open it in CC2013 to make H,264, because of the current H.264 bug as mentioned above.
- You end up with a lot of different icons of different versions of Premiere and all the other Adobe apps and it uses quite a bit of space on the programs drive. You can uninstall the old versions if you are happy with the new ones and free the space, but it does look a bit messy.
- Some people are keeping all 3 programs on the system - CC2014 as it is the latest, CC 2013 because the new version has some bugs and CS6 (which you get access to with a Creative Cloud subscription as well as the current version) because of the link with Adobe Encore, which is only available with CS6.
One good side effect of the programs being installed twice is you can test out the new version and see if it is acceptable but work in CC 2013 for most projects until the initial CC 2014 bugs are solved.
You can read more about Creative Cloud for Teams here.http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/Adobe-Creative-Cloud.html
EDIUS 7.31 update
EDIUS 7.31 UPDATE
In our last newsletter we said that Grass Valley had released a 7.31 update to EDIUS. They have released a small update to EDIUS, which is also marked as 7.31 which fixes a few small bugs. This update is available from the Grass Valley support site:http://www.grassvalley.com/login?r=%2Fsupport%2Fdownloads%2Fproducts
To check which version of 7.31 you have installed on your computer go to the help menu in EDIUS and choose "version info". If it says 7.31.1544 then you are on the latest version of EDIUS. If not we recommend you download and install this patch.
If you are thinking of switching to EDIUS from your existing software why not come along to our open day on 6th August. When you register tick the box which says "I do not use EDIUS and would like to know more". If we have many people ticking the box we will schedule an introduction to EDIUS talk as well as talking about what is new in the latest version.
Blackmagic have released a public beta version of the latest update to their grading software, Resolve. Resolve is available in two versions:
- A dongle protected version is about £600 +VAT.
- A free "lite" version.
Despite being free the Lite version is amazingly powerful. It lets you edit and grade at up to UltraHD resolution and it does not watermark or "disfigure" the footage in anyway, unlike most trial versions. This is because it is not a trial version, Blackmagic have simply decided to release a version which is completely free. To use the program you need a fairly up to date computer with a modern ATI or nVidia graphic card. Resolve uses the graphic card for a lot of the work so will not work on the wrong kind of card. It will also perform a lot better on a better quality card. The only other thing you will need is some time to learn the program.
Resolve was invented for colour grading which it does very well. However, Blackmagic have been slowly adding editing features. Up to now this was just to help you conform an edit you imported from elsewhere, but with version 11 you could consider doing the entire edit inside Resolve. Obviously editing programs like EDIUS and Premiere that have been around for a long time have been honed over several years so we would prefer editing in them, but the new Resolve 11 has some excellent attributes.
What's new in Resolve 11?
There is a huge list of new features in Resolve 11. Some of the highlights for us would be:
- Support for Grass Valley HQ & HQX format in MOV files. This is big news for PC users. The way you tend to work with Resolve is to load your RAW clips, such as Blackmagic DNG files from a Cinema camera, convert them in to something usable for editing, edit them in your editing program and then load them back into Resolve for final grading. On the PC we could use Avid DNxHD for HD files but could not do larger than HD. Now we can use Grass Valley's free codec instead and do whatever size we like. It should be mentioned this part is not working as yet, but we expect a fix in the next week or so. DaVinci 11 is a beta version (i.e. not quite finished) so although we might get excited by many of the features you should remember that it is in a beta version, The final version is probably a few weeks off.
- Lots of new editing features - proper timecode entry for in and out points, the ability to make split edits (where the audio starts at a different point to the video, much better handling of trimming on the timeline and a lot more.
- Dual monitor support - previous Resolve would only use one screen, now you can spread the interface over two, although the windows are not completely customisable as they would be with EDIUS or Premiere.
- Effects enhancements - including better keyframing of effects and key frammable slow motion on the timeline.
- A module for copying footage from card based cameras- the equivalent to Adobe Prelude. It is useful but does not support all card formats.
- Automatic colour matching to standard colour charts - put certain standard colour charts in front of the camera when filming and you can then select it in Resolve, click a button, and your footage is immediately corrected.
- More options for adjusting DNG format parameters - previously we could adjust colour temperature and exposure, now we can adjust shadows and highlights and a lot more.
All this is in addition to everything Resolve already did which included superior slow motion, excellent image scaling (EDIUS is our favourite for scaling, Resolve is at the same level) as well as, of course, excellent colour grading.
What is bad about DaVinci Resolve?
- The program is a colour grading program first and foremost so it works in a slightly different way to EDIUS or Premiere Pro. It takes a bit of time to get used to when you first start the program.
- It is designed for grading broadcast formats so does not handle formats like AVCHD and MP4 very well or at all. This kind of footage will need to be converted before it comes into Resolve.
- It started life on a MAC and as a result used Quicktime. It will not load 99% of AVI files.
- The output formats are also limited. Thankfully we now have Grass Valley HQX files but prior to this it was a struggle to produce decent footage that did not eat hard drive space. You will not find export settings for YouTube or Vimeo or many of the other things we take for granted in an average editing program.
- There is no output to DVD or Blu-ray either.
There are a lot of amazing things to like in Resolve as well as things we miss. We don't think it will replace a dedicated editing program like EDIUS, but it is getting better all the time. At our last open day we had a talk about Resolve which you can see here:http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/DVC-Open-Day-20th-November-2013.html
On this open day we will be taking a longer look at the new version and answering many questions about it.
Of course we also make bespoke Resolve editing systems. You can read more about them here: http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/Black_Magic_Systems.html
You can download the beta version of Resolve 11 from the Blackmagic support site:http://www.blackmagicdesign.com/support/family/davinci-resolve
Blackmagic have produced an important Firmware update for their 4K Production camera. Blackmagic cameras can film in either QuickTime ProRes files or in a highly uncompressed format called DNG. The Blackmagic 4K camera arrived in February this year but could only film into QuickTime ProRes files. Although this was nice it was not nearly as good as using DNG files.
Now Blackmagic have released a firmware update to let the camera film in DNG format.
You can download the update from the Blackmagic website: http://www.blackmagicdesign.com/support/family/professional-cameras
The new version of Avid Media Composer is now shipping and in a change to previous versions it no longer comes with Avid FX. Avid FX is a compositing program which has also been sold under the name of Boris RED. The only real difference between Avid FX and Boris Red was that Boris Red will plug into a variety of programs includingGrass Valley EDIUS, Adobe Premiere Pro and Sony Vegas, where as Avid FX ONLY plugged into Avid. Otherwise they were identical.
If you move up to Avid Media Composer 8 you will no longer get Avid FX included. If you have a fairly recent 64 bit version it will work in MC8 so you will not need to upgrade. If you have an older version, for example the one that shipped with Media Composer 5 then this will not work in MC8 and you will need to upgrade if you want to carry on using the program.
Boris have produced an upgrade from Avid FX to the latest version of Boris RED, version 5.5. The new version improves various parts of the interface, including improving the text windows, and also adds more real-time effects inside Avid. Also as you are moving on to Boris RED you have a version that will work in many editing programs, not just Avid. So, for example, if you decide to switch from Avid to EDIUS, you can upgrade to Boris RED 5.5 and use it inside EDIUS.
You can download a trial version of Boris Red 5.5 from the Boris website, and when you are convinced you want to order just buy it from us at DVC and we will send you the unlock code.
You can get the trial version and read more about Boris Red here:http://www.borisfx.com/red/
The upgrade is £184+VAT and available from the DVC website: http://www.dvc.uk.com/acatalog/Avid-FX-to-Boris-Red-5.5-upgrade-3171.htmlll
David Vincent Clarke Ltd
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All prices correct at time of email but subject to change; errors and omissions excepted.David Vincent Clarke Ltd
Unit 11, Woodingdean Business Park,
Sea View Way, Brighton, Sussex, BN2 6NX
Tel: 01273 205700