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Nuke Gets Fired Up

The Foundry announces 30% price reduction and full OFX support for NUKE 4.7 (June 25, 2007)
DMN Newswire--2007-6-25--London, UK. June 25, 2007. Leading visual effects software developer The Foundry is delighted to announce the launch of NUKE 4.7, a significant product release featuring full support for OFX plug-ins, a brand new pricing structure, an upgraded version of the FrameCycler flipbook tool, an improved curve editor and a fast new optical flow node. In addition to the NUKE 4.7 release, The Foundry has announced that a new release of its Furnace for OFX plug-ins is imminent, the new Furnace for OFX toolset will feature 36 advanced image processing tools.

Looking beyond technical development, The Foundry has slashed their NUKE GUI prices by 30%, digital artists can now purchase a full NUKE license for just £1750 / $3,500, and with a price cut of over 70%, render licenses are now priced at a very competitive £125 / $250 per license.

NUKE began as the in-house compositing and effects application at Digital Domain, where it won an Academy Award® for Technical Achievement and has been used to generate effects for over 45 feature films and hundreds of commercials and music videos. In March 2007 NUKE became part of The Foundrys portfolio of visual effects products and is now being developed at its offices in London.

Since the move over to The Foundry, NUKE has seen a number of new enhancements including a brand new optical flow node for accurate retiming operations, a new interface with enhanced tracking markers for Tracker, improved selection methods, support for reading/writing .hdri image formats, an updated colour wheel, FrameCycler Professional 2007 and complete support for The Foundrys full range of OFX plug-ins.

Launched by The Foundry in 2004, OFX (Open FX) is free-of-charge, open source plug-in standard for developing 2D digital visual effects. OFX was instantly welcomed for its benefits to digital artists and their clients, and for allowing developers to focus more R&D time on new solutions to advance the art of digital effects. It is via the OFX API that The Foundry has been able to provide plug-in support for NUKE so quickly after it acquired its product development.

NUKE is already a very powerful high-end film compositing application and the availability of The Foundrys Furnace, Tinder and Keylight plug-ins will certainly enhance its functionality.

Matt Welford, Head of Compositing at Peter Jacksons Weta Digital commented; "We're delighted that The Foundry have taken on NUKE development. The integration of their tools together with NUKE can only produce a solution that will really benefit the post production community."

Thousands of leading digital artists already take advantage of Furnace to ease the routine processes involved with the creation of digital visual effects. With The Foundrys Furnace 4 for OFX shipping soon, artists using supported OFX hosts will gain access to a much broader range of its sophisticated motion estimation technology to enhance workflow and boost productivity.

New plug-ins in Furnace 4 for OFX include, ChannelRepair, ColourAlign, ColourMatte, Contrast, Correlate, DeBlur, DeFlicker2, DeNoise, Depth, FrameRepair, MatchGrade, MotionBlur, MotionMatch, MotionMatte, MotionSmooth, ShadowRemoval, SmartFill, SmartPlate, SmartZoom, Splicer, Steadiness, VectorConvertor, VectorGenerator and VectorWarper. In addition to the new plug-ins, The Foundry has taken advantage of the latest advances in technology, combined with over seven years of its own research into motion estimation and revisited the existing Furnace for OFX plug-ins to deliver optimised output, enhanced speed, a more intuitive user interface and improve the user experience.

Highlights Include:
Contrast allows the user to extract hidden detail from dark areas of an image without overexposing the bright areas. Based on the adaptive contrast enhancement algorithm in Apical's Iridix product, Contrast behaves like the human visual system by being adaptive and spatially varying.

DeFlicker1 and DeFlicker2 are fully automated plug-ins designed to remove luminance flicker in a sequence. DeFlicker1 is particularly good at coping with flicker that does not originate from the original scene, e.g. ageing film, dust and chemical exposure. DeFlicker2 is designed to remove in-scene flicker, poorly synchronised light rigs, stray light etc. Both of The Foundrys DeFlicker solutions can remove multiple over-lapping phase different flickers, while adapting to cope with motion in the sequence.

DeNoise is a noise and grain removal plug-in that uses advanced motion estimation technology along the direction of motion, thus reducing the noise without introducing any of the artefacts typically associated with noise reduction.

FrameRepair quickly replaces damaged or missing frames by interpolating pixels from images either side, producing a seamless repair.

Kronos uses The Foundrys advanced motion estimation technology to build in-between frames in a sequence. Kronos can be used to speed up (with motion blur) or slow down an image sequence. Artists have the option of supplying foreground mattes, to give retimed objects tight crisp edges and the latest version will detect and account for occluded regions of the image.

ReGrain and DeGrain are a pair of advanced grain management tools. DeGrain is an intelligent solution designed to remove the maximum amount of grain without damaging the image. ReGrain duplicates grain either from a sample image or stock footage and applies it to a new sequence.

WireRemoval is an automatic tool for removing straight or curved wires from a sequence, whilst preserving the images grain and background detail. WireRemoval comes with a whole bunch of tools to tackle variable width over the wires length, as well as wire tracking and automatic colour correction.

VectorConverter is a tool designed to convert images representing motion vector fields, originating from other vendor applications, into the vector format used in Furnace by providing a simple interface to rewire, scale, offset and invert the colour channels.

VectorGenerator utilises The Foundrys next generation motion estimation engine to produce accurate sets of vectors between frames. By using VectorGenerator the artist only needs to calculate the vectors once and the user can input them into many of the Furnace plug-ins, saving bundles of time.

VectorWarper allows the user to warp an image sequence using vectors from a different image sequence. This plug-in can be used creatively to produce unusual temporal image effects.

Availability and Pricing
Now shipping, Nuke is available on Linux, Windows and Mac. Nuke 4.7 is priced at $3,500 / £1,750 with render nodes priced at: $250 / £125. Nuke 4.7 is available to download now from The Foundry website www.thefoundry.co.uk

Shipping soon, Furnace 4 node-locked is priced at: $4,400 / £2,200, with Furnace 4 float priced at: $6,600 / £3,300. Existing customers can upgrade for $2,200 / £1,100 node-locked and $3,300 / £1,650 floating.

- ENDS -
About The Foundry
The Foundry is a world-leading innovator of visual effects and image processing technologies that boost productivity in motion picture and video post production. On February 10th 2007, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences awarded a Sci-Tech Award® to The Foundrys development team for the Furnace image processing suite. The company now holds a trio of Academy Award® winning products including the high-end compositing system NUKE, and keying application Keylight.

The Foundrys products support a wide range of host platforms including After Effects, Autodesk® Media and Entertainment Systems, Avid DS, Baselight, Film Master, NUKE, Scratch and Shake. The company has also driven OpenFX, an open standard for visual effects plug-ins, now broadly adopted by host and plug-in developers such as Autodesk®, Assimilate, FilmLight, Digital Vision, Grass Valley, Soluciones Graficas por Ordenador (S.G.O.), Photron and others.

Customers include: Digital Domain, The Moving Picture Company, Sony Pictures Imageworks, Warner Bros and Weta Digital Ltd.

The Foundry is headquartered in London, and has offices in Los Angeles. For more information please visit The Foundrys website at www.thefoundry.co.uk, or call +44 20 7434 0449.

© The Foundry, its logo and product names are registered trademarks in the UK, USA and and/or other countries. Academy Award is a registered trademark of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. All other trademarks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.

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Related Keywords:The Foundry, Nuke, FrameCycler, OFX, plug-ins, Furnace, Keylight, Tinder

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