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Gearless Speeds Movie Post-Production With WSD/HD

(September 13, 2001)
Accom announced that Copenhagen-based effects house Gearless has installed an Accom WSD/HD High-Definition Digital Disk Recorder for work on Danish director Thomas Vinterberg's "It's All About Love", Nimbus Films' upcoming movie starring Joaquin Phoenix and Claire Danes.

Using the WSD/HD at the heart of a network of compositing and effects workstations, Gearless artists can render and view their effects tests at high definition for the first time, either on HD monitors on in the facility's preview theater.

A newly-formed division of Zentropa, Gearless is located in Copenhagen's Filmbyen production center, and is posting more than 100 effects shots for the movie. "The process of checking the shots is much faster with the WSD/HD," commented Peter Hjorth, VFX Supervisor. "All our artists can be rendering to the WSD/HD simultaneously and with the ability to playback the results at 2K we can immediately see what the effect looks like on a big screen. To have the same quality of replay without the WSD/HD would mean a wait of two or three days before we could view the test. Now, as soon as a shot has finished rendering, we can play it."

Gearless also uses the WSD/HD as a server for initial offline editing in standard definition before committing to rendering at 2K, another method that saves time. The WSD/HD's browser-based NetPanel(TM) interface gives Gearless' effects artists control of VTRs from each individual workstation. "It's a system that allows us to work with our assets efficiently and without interruptions to the workflow while rendering tasks tie up our workstations," Hjorth added.

WSD/HD is a high or standard definition, 10-bit uncompressed video, digital disk recorder that represents a breakthrough in price performance in HD recording technology. WSD/HD easily transfers video to and from high definition or standard video tape recorders as well as graphics or animation workstations. It supports full bandwidth, standard definition serial digital recording and playback in addition to all of the standard high definition production formats including 24P -- all uncompressed.

For users involved in post-production editing, WSD/HD with Digital Audio option provides eight tracks of AES/EBU audio capabilities allowing the user to do standard digital audio editing as well as multi-track surround sound production in an already universal (SD/HD) digital disk recorder. Post-production editors can now edit HD source material that contains both video and audio giving them faster access than a Video Tape Recorder environment.

Graphics and effects for HDTV and electronic film often require complex interaction within a multi-user, collaborative environment. WSD/HD is ideally designed for integration into multiple workstation installations, albeit system standardized or a mix of platforms and operating systems, by providing high-speed access to all users through Accom's unique, browser-based Net.Panel(TM) interface. WSD/HD uses the NT file system for quick, easy access via Windows networking. Use QuickTime Player Pro on any network station to transfer frames in Targa, TIFF, PICT, and many other graphics formats, or simply render directly to WSD/HD storage disks as a QuickTime movie.

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