IBC 2008 - Day 3

Posted By David Cox on September 15, 2008 12:00 am | Permalink
Day 3 at IBC was reasonably productive - lots of back-to-back meetings. It seems that however far apart they get placed, I'm always late for the next one!
Red have finally released an SDK so that other developers can support the Red One camera files directly. Actually, it's only a partial release and they have only released the Windows version, not Linux yet. I always thought it was a big mistake for Red to lock themselves into a couple of manufacturers in terms of post production support. Professional clients have expectations about ability and performance, and don't see why they should give that up because of a business deal between the camera manufacturer and a computer company.
Concrete was the first Soho company to post produce a project shot on Red last year, so we're pretty confident with the data format and what to do with it. We had to create our own bespoke workflow and did so with the aid of SGO, as we used their Mistika product to grade and finish the project. This provided our clients with the realtime performance and grading ability they expected.
We are keen to add direct support for Red to all our systems. Today, I saw Quantel support Red files directly with their Pablo grading system. What is exciting to me is how this works with their Genetic Engineering product. Although this is mostly just a posh name for a SAN, GE does have a very neat trick. It "virtualises" data, meaning that clips stored as DPX files can be presented as a variety of file formats and resolutions. These files actually don't physically exist until an external device tries to copy them, then GE makes the desired file format "on the fly". Where this fits into Red support is that with GE, Red files imported into the system will be viewable externally as DPX, TIFF, QuickTime etc. This "Red enables" other products instantly. It's this virtualisation of data that prompted us to be the first Soho company to install Genetic Engineering, as it's support for a growing number of file formats helps glue all our systems together.
Two more days to go! Given that I don't seem to have been able to get to bed before 3AM yet, I'm becoming a bit "IBCed out". At least the sun has made an appearance - it has poured with rain for the last couple of days. This has prevented the use of the RAI 's (exhibition centre) best asset - "The Beach". This is an outside area next to an artificial lake where the ground is covered in sand and beach-style sun loungers are spread about. A beach hut bar completes the scene. Clearly, this is popular with IBCers for "meetings", "deals," "coffees" and other euphemisms for drinking Heineken.
My productive day at IBC ended with both a "meeting" and a "coffee" at The Beach.
David Cox