The Friday Roundup – Audio Tips and Transitions on Titles

5 Audio Tricks
For the average amateur video maker probably one of the hardest things to control at the shooting stage is that of audio.
Most of the time due to equipment constraints and a lack of control over the shooting environment you end up with audio that is all over the place.
Taming this beast in editing software is somewhat possible but even then the results can…
Read more…

DISH: timecode sync uses satellite dishes

DISH: timecode sync using satellite dishes

Ari Krupnik decided sound sync was a good place to try a different approach, so he created LTCsync. Now he reveals DISH, a way to sync sound using satellites. It’s plug and play sync for the rest of us!

Back in April I presented PVC readers LTCsync, a timecode system that is simpler to use than a clapper. Designed by Ari Krupnik, who believes his previous tech experience can be used to reduce manual labour in film, LTCsync is a timecode system based on a completely new approach to the sound sync problem: it uses satellite dishes to make everything work.

Ari Krupnik wanted filmmakers to try the LTCsync software, so he approached ProVideo Coalition with the project. His aim was simple: “know how our software performs in the real world. We’re asking people who use LTC in their work to download our pre-release and try it”. He added, then, that the hardware that would work with LTCsync was being developed and he would tell me more when it was ready.

DISH: timecode sync using satellite dishes

DISH, a satellite timecode receiver

The goal of the whole project, he said, is to “eliminate as many switches and settings as possible, to make a system that you just plug in, turn on and focus on the shoot instead of babysitting the timecode” so he decided “to base the device on satellite time signals. I call my device DISH, like a satellite dish. Satellite time is very accurate, and it’s universal. You never have to jam-sync Dishes. They never drift. They always run on UTC. They work with expensive cameras that have timecode input, and they work with DSLRs by recording timecode on audio tracks.”

So, that’s what Ari Krupnik and team are sharing on Kickstarter. Even before it goes live, the first filmmakers that got to try the system or see the concept claimed that “It’s such an obvious idea that it should already exist!”, as assistant editor Daniel García said, while DP Matt Martin commented: “This will change the world we live in when it comes to production.”

DISH: timecode sync using satellite dishes

The master clock in the sky

DISH is a zero-configuration timecode generator. Looking back,  Ari Krupnik  says that “when I first started working in film, I thought:how hard can sync be? Then I saw what they saw: rows and rows of cryptic switches. Line Level? Time Of Day? Free Run? User Bits? Drop-Frame? What if I get one of these wrong?”

Aiming to make the whole timecode sync a more humane experience, Ari Krupnik developed the software and now the hardware that will make the process simple. As he puts, it, it’s plug and play sync for the rest of us! When presented with the project sound engiuneer Peter Graf said: “I have the feeling that you are onto something good.”

For sync to happen a master clock is needed, right?. It so happens that governments and private companies have put satellites in orbit that transmit very accurate time. You can get precise UTC time anywhere in the world. No more asking, “Which master are we jammed to?” “Is this one running as master or slave?” “Are we running Time of Day?” “When did you last jam this one?

DISH is always at 24fps

It’s really simple, apparently: when you put a DISH receiver on your camera, it becomes a timecode zombie. It mindlessly follows signals from a global cabal of satellites in space. No more drifting. No more jamming. No more free run. Satellites are in control. Sound and picture are in sync. The “magic” of it is that it all happens through a box that, during the development process lost every button or switch, even the on-off switch. DISH turns on as soon as you plug in an output cable.

DISH does have one controversial aspect, though: it locks down the frame rate and output level. DISH is always on 24fps and mic level. Ari Krupnik says this is “where people give me this look: are you for real?” to what he replies with “I am. The differences between 24fps and 23.98, 30 and 29.97, drop-frame and non-drop-frame, etc., trip people up. To avoid this confusion, DISH puts the timecode on an audio track. Audio streams are inherently continuous, and can take timecode at a different rate than the video in the same file.”

There are solutions for this, he says, and they are explained on the Kickstarter page now created, where the team looks for crowdfunding to reach its US$ 10,000 goal. Research and development are done, based on the feedback from everyone from casual users to industry veterans, and the DISH is ready to conquer timecode sync with signals from outerspace. The team just needs the support from users to make a real production run.

The post DISH: timecode sync uses satellite dishes appeared first on ProVideo Coalition.

Classic Course: Lens Blur

Continuing our look at effects that take advantage of “blur maps”, the two movies below focus on Lens Blur. This effect is a much more advanced version of Compound Blur, rendering with higher quality while giving you more control over the blur as well.

After these movies were originally recorded, Adobe updated Lens Blur to a new effect called Camera Lens Blur. As part of this, the parameters were renamed slightly: 

  • the Depth Map Layer and Channel are now under the Blur Map section in Camera Lens Blur
  • the Iris Shape, Radius, Blade Curvature, and Rotation parameters are now grouped under the Iris Properties section, with some new parameters such as Diffraction Fringe to create even more realistic effects
  • the Specular Brightness and Threshold parameters are now under the Highlight section
  • the Noise parameters have been dropped

This first movie focuses on taking advantage of the iris properties, which don’t require a depth map:

The second movie focuses on the use of a depth map, including ways to fake one:

These movies previously appeared in our Insight Into Effects course on Learning. They’ve retired that course from their library, so we’re making them available publicly for free.

The post Classic Course: Lens Blur appeared first on ProVideo Coalition.

Newtek TC-1 Provides Hurricane-Force Productions at the U of Miami

As a university with a large and active sports program, the University of Miami’s Athletic Department has a high functioning, professional video production services team. The School’s sports team, the Miami Hurricanes compete in the Atlantic Coast Conference, and broadcast their games on ESPN College Extra and ESPN3. These broadcasts are produced by mainly students, from UM’s School of Communication.

One major facet used by UM’s video production team is the NewTek TriCaster TC1. The multi camera production system helps the team pull in multiple camera feeds in real time, and creates a virtual set with online graphics. The TC1 is frequently used for shows at the Watsco Center on the schools Coral Gables campus for men and women’s basketball.

In addition to the TC1 being a mainstay in the production teams arsenal, NewTek’s presence at UM also expands to other areas. Events at the main campus’ Alex Rodriguez Park and Mark Light Field, are broadcasted using the TriCaster TC410.

Most productions at the university feed their camera signals using a NewTek NC1 Studio I/O Module, which converts to NewTek’s NDI networked video and control over IP protocol.

“We did the entire in-game for men’s and women’s basketball using the NC1. We use it essentially as an NDI router. It’s saved us a couple of times. The way our control room is set up, I don’t think it was possible to do the broadcast without the NC1, just because of the nature of how flexible it is for us. It’s very robust. We would had to have bought a lot more equipment, repeaters and relays and essentially duplicating video signal just to get it to the right location. The fact that the NC1 can convert from NDI to SDI as well as SDI to NDI is also huge. A replay operator at one facility can pull replays from anywhere because of the NC1. If there’s multiple events going on, we essentially use the NC1 as a bad-ass router.”

Anthony Lestochi, Manager, Video Production Services, UM

The NC1 Studio I/O takes up to 8 video sources and converts them to SDI or NDI for input and output

Check out this article from NewTek to learn more HERE

Learn more about NewTek HERE

The post Newtek TC-1 Provides Hurricane-Force Productions at the U of Miami appeared first on Videoguys Blog.

Cine Gear 2019: Sony VENICE Firmware Updates with HFR and more

We had a chance to talk to Sony about the new firmware 4.0 for the Sony VENICE. The big news? High Frame Rates up to 90fps at 6K 2.39:1 and 72fps at 6K 17:9 on the large-format 6K camera.

At Sony’s booth, the new  Version 4.0 high frame rate capabilities and the popular VENICE extension System were shown to those who tried to get black VENICE t-shirt swag during Cine Gear 2019. Hey, it was a cool t-shirt.

Here are the key features of the VENICE Version 5.0 firmware, designed to achieve enhanced shooting usability and efficient production workflow:

  • HFR Capabilities – Up to 90fps at 6K 2.39:1 and 72fps at 6K 17:9.
  • Apple ProRes 4444 – Record HD videos in high image quality with SxS PRO+, without Sony’s AXS-R7 recorder. This is especially effective for HD VFX workflow.
  •  180 Degree Rotation Monitor Out– Flip and flop images via viewfinder and SDI.
  • High-Resolution Magnification via HD Monitor Out – Existing advanced viewfinder technology for clearer magnification is now extended to HD Monitor Out.
  • Improved User Marker Settings – Menu updates for easier selection of frame lines on the viewfinder.

VENICEFirmware 4.0

Will be released this June, this version includes an HFR license to support 120fps at 4K 2.39:1, 110fps at 4K 17:9, 75fps at 4K 4:3 and 60fps at 6K 3:2. The next version of the firmware will mean that the VENICE can capture three times slow motion at 24p even in 6K. Cinematographers can utilize the same camera across multiple speeds, maintaining the full-frame shallow depth of field, as well as the high picture quality of oversampling in 6K.


The post Cine Gear 2019: Sony VENICE Firmware Updates with HFR and more appeared first on ProVideo Coalition.