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FilmLight Unveils Baselight v3

Substantial performance increases and new creative tools for film & video grading applications (September 15, 2005)

At IBC 2005, FilmLight Ltd., a leading provider of digital filmmaking technology, unveiled Baselight v3, the newest version of its colour grading system. The latest release, planned for shipment by the end of 2005, will feature substantial performance increases, new software-based creative tools, and support for the now-shipping Baselight Blackboard control surface. The company also announced a new entry level hardware platform which provides a new price entry point, cost effective assist stations and an ideal solution for companies working on low budget DI projects.

Major Speed and Productivity Increases In New Version
Delivery of the dual-core AMD Opteron processor, which increases processing speed across the whole Baselight range, commences with Baselight v3. This is the first of a number of available performance upgrades demonstrating the adaptability of the architecture to utilize the latest in PC hardware. Taken together with the other new v3 features such as the stack manager, forthcoming GPU grading, Blackboard support, software optimizations and a new workstation platform the productivity increases for this version are substantial.

In addition, when coupled with FilmLights unique Baselight Four and Baselight Eight cluster architecture, the new AMD Opteron processors enable clients to grade an unprecedented 2 real-time streams of uncompressed 4K media. With v3, the Baselight Eight system will support up to 48TB of disk space. This enables users to keep multiple projects online simultaneously, to use systems to their full potential, and accommodate clients schedules without the delay of loading and unloading content.

Software Innovation Enhances Creativity, Workflow
Visitors to FilmLights stand are test-driving many of the upcoming capabilities of the Baselight v3 software, including:

* 3D additive and subtractive keyer. Baselight leverages FilmLights knowledge of 3-D colour space in a brand new 3-D keyer. Based on an all-new algorithm, the 3-D keyer isolates areas in different parts of the colour space and manages them within the same matte strip, allowing colourists to pull mattes through a secondary grade.

* Audio support and field rendering. With the release of v3, Baselight will include key features required for video post-production, including support for scratch audio, as well as field rendering and 3:2 pull-down for video grading and deliverables.

* Scene detector. Using sophisticated, fast image analysis, Baselight is able to break long form content into separate shots for easier shot-based grading, for times when there is no EDL available.

* OpenFX plug-in architecture supported. With v2.2 FilmLight introduced Baselight support for effects plug-ins from third-party providers The Foundry (Tinder, Furnace and Keylight) and Photrons Primatte through the Open FX SDK. Baselight v3 adds temporal support, enabling use of the full range of plug-ins.

* Stack Manager. New one-button application of any grade type enables a flexible and efficient workflow. An inside/outside function allows rapid adjustment of areas within and surrounding any defined matte. Two sets of Keys and Shapes can easily be combined to create complex mattes. Layer control buttons allow multiple inside/outside layers to be defined and directly accessed within the current stack. Any number of additional layers can be accessed via the tablet and main UI. The effect is to greatly simplify the management of complex grade stacks.

* Grain reduction. The matte based grain reduction feature offers a stunning demonstration of the power of the Baselight Four and Eight cluster systems, enabling real-time grain reduction of a vertical slice of a 2K image. This provides the colourist with a way to tune the grain reduction for each part of the image in real-time.

Finally, in addition to a new low-cost hardware configuration available for v3, FilmLight announced that its Baselight Blackboard hardware control surface is now shipping just five months after the first prototype was unveiled at NAB. Guest colourist Adam Glasman of Framestore CFC is on hand at the FilmLight stand demonstrating many of these features, which he used in beta testing, on the feature film, ?Goal.

Availability and Cost
Baselight, Baselight Four and Baselight Eight systems are currently shipping. System pricing starts at $145,000 USMSRP. Baselight v3 is planned for shipment in Q4 2005 and is free to customers under maintenance contracts. The Baselight Blackboard control surface is supported from v3, pricing starts at $48,000.

About FilmLight Ltd
FilmLight was established to develop an integrated digital film mastering process by providing the worlds highest quality digital film scanning, grading and colour management techniques. The FilmLight team has been pioneering digital film techniques for nearly 20 years enabling it to offer unsurpassed industry knowledge. The companys clients for its pioneering Northlight, Baselight and Truelight digital film technology include Cinesite, ILM, Éclair, Rhythm & Hues, Pacific Title, FotoKem, Framestore CFC, Matchframe and the Moving Picture Company. FilmLight has offices in London, Los Angeles and New Zealand.

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Related Keywords:FilmLight, Baselight v3, colour grading, Baselight Blackboard, DI, Baselight Four, Baselight Eight, AMD, keyer, OpenFX, The Foundry, Photron, grain reduction,


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