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September 2009
ESTA, PERA Merge Online
The Entertainment Services and Technology Association (ESTA) — one of the world’s leading trade associations for the entertainment-technology industry — and the Production Equipment Rental Association (PERA) — the international trade association for film and video production rental companies — have announced an agreement to merge, subject to final ratification. 
DFT Releases Scanity Online
Digital Film Technology has introduced the Scanity 4K film scanner, offering speed, versatility, stability and safe film handling. 
DFT Intros OptiPin Online
Digital Film Technology has launched its OptiPin film-guidance and image-stabilization option for the Spirit family of telecines and scanners. 
Arri Scans at 2K Online
Arri has introduced the Arriscan 2K, an entry-level model streamlined for high-speed scanning at an extremely competitive price. 
Arricube Package Expands Online
Arri has expanded its Arricube package with the introduction of Arricube Creator, a versatile software tool that generates 3-D look-up tables for the digital-intermediate process. 
Arri Offers Quality Control Online
Arri has introduced the Arri Quality Control Player, the first Digital Cinema Package-quality control player to enter the market
Celtx Gets a Facelift Online
Following the successful release of Celtx 1.0, Celtx has upgraded to version 2.0.1. Among the new features in version 2.0.1 of the preproduction software suite, a Toolbox icon in the main toolbar now allows users to access a Toolbox page on the Celtx Web site, where add-ons can be downloaded to customize the Celtx software.
Toon Boom Announces Studio 5 Online
Toon Boom Animation Inc. has unveiled Studio 5, which brings stop-motion animation to the software’s wide array of existing animation capabilities. 
Toon Boom Services Storyboard Family Online
Toon Boom Animation Inc. has released Service Pack 1 (SP1) for both Storyboard 1.5 and Storyboard Pro 1.5. In addition to several product enhancements and performance improvements, SP1 includes an Optimize project command to remove unused elements and compress drawings or flatten all drawings in the project; the ability to create one-frame panels; the ability to apply commands and operations to a selection of panels; the ability to select layers throughout a selection of panels; new options for exporting projects in PDF format; new commands to allow camera positions and moves to be copied and pasted; new Save Project option for Mac OSX; and new panel-navigation preferences. 
Toon Boom Animates with Pro, Manager Online
Toon Boom Animation Inc. has introduced Animate Pro and Manager, both of which are integral parts of the new modularized Harmony Solution, which is ideal for creating traditional, paperless and cut-out animation, all in a network environment. 
Pixelfantastic Releases Quantel Plug-In Online
Pixelfantastic, a London-based HD film and video production and postproduction company, has released a suite of effects plug-ins for Quantel’s eQ, iQ, Pablo and sQ Edit Plus creative systems.
Quantel Democratizes 2K Red Online Online
Quantel has announced that its eQ and Pablo HD online finishing and color-correction systems running the new v4.1 software will be able to carry out conforming, editing, effects, color-correction and deliverables production on 2K (2048x1024) Red projects.
Boinx Makes Noise Online
Noise Industries, developer of visual-effects tools for the postproduction and broadcast markets, has announced that development partner Boinx Software has released the FxTiles FxPack, a new collection of 3-D filters and transitions designed for Adobe After Effects CS3/CS4, Apple Final Cut Studio and Apple Final Cut Express. Powered by FxFactory, the FxTiles FxPack offers seven professional-grade filters and transitions with extensive controls and a slew of presets, allowing users to quickly build complex 3-D movements with stunning results.
Sugarfx Packs Effects for Noise Online
Noise Industries has announced that development partner Sugarfx is releasing two new plug-in FxPacks: RadialWave and H.U.D. (Heads Up Display). 
Digieffects Goes FreeForm  Online
Digieffects has introduced the FreeForm AE plug-in for Adobe After Effects. The intuitive and robust warping tool allows users to manipulate a flat object into almost any shape using a mesh in 3-D space.
ContentAgent Automates Dailies Online
Root6 Technology has introduced ContentAgent v2.5, an automated high-definition dailies system for film and episodic deliverables. Features of v2.5 include Blu-ray authoring, a software-only version for file-based workflows, and the new ContentCentral and JobAgents products, designed to streamline workflows and cut costs in transcode-intensive environments.
MTI Film Upgrades Correct DRS Online
MTI Film has released a new and significantly improved version of its award-winning digital film restoration and finishing software, Correct DRS. 
MTI Adds DA Head Module Online
MTI Film has debuted a new option for its award-winning Control Dailies solution, the DA Head module, which enables faster-than-real-time power of Control Dailies to facilitate the processing of digitally acquired dailies from virtually any source. Control Dailies for Digital Acquisition (DA) supports Red One, Panasonic P2, Panavision Genesis, Grass Valley Viper and Arri D-21 digital camera systems, as well as media in DPX file format.
Xytech Systems Deploys MediaPulse Online
Xytech Systems Corporation, a leading provider of media business software and services for workflow management, resource scheduling and media-asset management, has unveiled MediaPulse, a revolutionary application suite for asset and resource-based media workflows, offering businesses a high-performance, end-to-end solution, extending from initial request through delivery and billing.
Cinegy Streamlines Workflow Online
Cinegy has announced its workflow, digital-asset-management and archive solution for the broadcast and media industry: Cinegy Workflow. 
Panavision, Loumasystems Unveil Louma 2
Panavision Remote Systems and Loumasystems have introduced the Louma 2, a new-generation camera-movement system built on an open-architecture platform.
Cineped Provides 360-Degree Support
Cineped has announced the availability of its panoramic 360-degree camera-support system, which enables camera operators to capture exceptional images with ease. More than a dolly or tripod, the system features a 42", 360-degree rotational sliding camera plate; extendable, automatic-positioning telescopic column; digital remote control; and a diamond-style mobile base with heavy-duty rubber wheels. Designed to allow for a wealth of camera angles — including horizontal and vertical movement, panoramic/360-degree movement and compound camera moves — Cineped maneuvers with fine-tuned, virtually noise-free operation.
Arri CSC Relocates, Expands
Arri CSC will relocate its New York camera-rental department to a custom-designed facility adjoining the company’s lighting and grip division in Secaucus, N.J. The adjoining buildings have a combined footprint of 91,000 square feet; the new camera-rental facility is 36,000 square feet, representing an expansion of over 50 percent.
Porta-Jib Goes Exploring
Porta-Jib has announced the Explorer, an all-in-one lightweight jib/tripod/trolley/dolly system for cameras weighing up to 20 pounds. 
Polecam Extends to 7th Heaven
Polecam has announced its long-reaching, truly portable camera rig, Polecam 7th Heaven. Incorporating seven rigid carbon-fiber elements, which interlock to achieve an 8-meter reach (approximately 26'), 7th Heaven delivers unprecedented versatility in terms of horizontal and vertical camera location while giving operators total control of boom angle, pan and tilt.
ACS France Supplies Europe with PFC Ultimate Arm
ACS France recently signed an exclusive partnership with Performance Filmworks Canada, becoming the European supplier of the PFC Ultimate Arm, a robotic crane fixed on a 4x4 AMG Mercedes ML55. This system has provided amazing results for the film industry, performing even in off-road and inclement-weather conditions.
Tuffpak Heads Abroad
Manufactured by Nalpak, Tuffpak tripod cases are now available in Europe. Florian Granderath, founder of Camera Support Granderath, stocks all sizes of the Tuffpak case line and maintains a distribution network throughout Europe. 
Plasticase Unleashes Nanuk
Nanuk is a new line of professional-quality protective Plasticase, designed for professionals who need to rely on robust, lightweight and high-performance cases for protection in the harshest environments. 
Convergent Design Ships NanoFlash
Convergent Design has introduced the NanoFlash portable HD/SD recorder/player. Using the Sony XDCam 422 Codec, NanoFlash records HD/SD video and audio onto Compact Flash (CF) cards. 
Canon Releases Firmware Update for 5D Mark II
Responding to user requests, Canon U.S.A. Inc. has issued a firmware update enabling manual exposure control in the EOS 5D Mark II digital SLR’s video mode. 
Cineparts Energizes Slurp-O-Meter
Cineparts has introduced the Slurp-O-Meter, a voltmeter, ammeter, power meter and amp-hour meter in one rugged housing, enabling at-a-glance monitoring of electrical parameters.
That Cat Intros 2500 Slider
That Cat Camera Support, LLC has introduced the Silent Cat 2500 camera slider. Weighing 30 pounds and featuring a 29"-long track, allowing 19" of travel, the Silent Cat 2500 is perfect for working in close quarters.
IDX Offers High-Load Batteries
IDX System Technology, Inc., has introduced the company’s new premier power system, the E-HL9 Series, a high-performance, high-load Lithium Ion battery line designed for the age of professional HD production. 
VES Presents Entertainment Production Summit
The Visual Effects Society will present a Production Summit for the greater entertainment industry on Oct. 24 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Marina del Rey. 

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ESTA, PERA Merge

The Entertainment Services and Technology Association (ESTA) — one of the world’s leading trade associations for the entertainment-technology industry — and the Production Equipment Rental Association (PERA) — the international trade association for film and video production rental companies — have announced an agreement to merge, subject to final ratification. Under the agreement, PERA will become the PERA Council within ESTA, retaining its focus on the production of film, television and commercials, and the development and implementation of programs and services for production rental businesses. 

The move will provide PERA members with immediate access to a wide array of benefits and services as well as the support of a professional staff, while allowing the PERA leadership to focus on their core mission. By adding a key sector, ESTA strengthens its voice on behalf of the entertainment technology industry and brings an important new dimension to many of its programs.
    “The merger of these two closely related industry organizations makes economic sense and, more importantly, business sense for the companies that make up the membership of both organizations,” says Bill Groener, president of ESTA. Pat Patin, PERA’s president, adds, “This will provide greater membership value and expand opportunities for companies serving the entire entertainment-technology industry. This merger strengthens the position of both organizations.”

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.esta.org
www.peraonline.org
DFT Releases Scanity

Digital Film Technology has introduced the Scanity 4K film scanner, offering speed, versatility, stability and safe film handling. The Scanity serves a variety of scanning applications, including dailies, feature-film mastering, archive, restoration, short form, commercials and digital intermediates.

Utilizing TDI (Time Delay Integration) line-sensor technology, which ensures extremely fast and sensitive film scans, the Scanity captures over 4,300 horizontal pixels and automatically matches to the film-frame aspect ratio (including full aperture, widescreen, CinemaScope and VistaVision) simply by scanning as many lines as are required. On 35mm 4-perf film, the Scanity offers 4K scanning at up to 15 fps, 2K at up to 25 fps, 1K at up to 44 fps, 0.5K at up to 69 fps and 0.25K at up to 96 fps (depending on workstation file systems and SAN setups).
    A precision roller gate offers smooth and safe film handling, even with fragile, shrunken and legacy film stocks. In conjunction with a continuous-motion capstan film transport, a touch-free Optical Pin Registration scans film perforations without mechanical pins, meaning no stress is placed on precious film. The film continuously travels on the roller gate, which is controlled by a high-precision tacho and servo system, ensuring ultimate image steadiness and speed.
    The Scanity uses efficient LED light sources with a specific selection of spectral wavelengths that are switchable depending on the film stock and the colorimetry of particular film dyes. Integrated and dedicated spatial-image processing manages the scaling and formatting before the material is stored on local or centralized storage, and a local touch screen and dedicated workstation allow users to control the scanner, perform image-quality checks, adjust a variety of technical settings and manage data within the attached local or SAN storage system.
    The Scanity integrates seamlessly with the comprehensive set of Bones postproduction software tools, which provide a variety of editing and auto-conform functions, format conversions, and data and video transfers for dailies and digital-intermediate workflows.
    DFT has also announced that Sony Pictures Technologies has committed to the Scanity film scanner for various data workflows. “Our goal has been to identify a high-quality, efficient, flexible and cost-effective solution that will offer us the ability to scan content once and support many workflows,” says Chris Cookson, president of Sony Pictures Technologies at Sony Pictures Entertainment. “Scanity will help us facilitate the creative process and maximize the value of our content in a timely fashion.”

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.dft-film.com
DFT Intros OptiPin

Digital Film Technology has launched its OptiPin film-guidance and image-stabilization option for the Spirit family of telecines and scanners. The Optical Pin Registration solution addresses the major difference between film-scanning systems: the type of film transport. A capstan-driven film transport provides real-time, gentle film handling and can accommodate shrunken film or damaged perforations, whereas pin-registered film transports are slower and place stress on the film by forcing pins into the perforations. The OptiPin solution merges the advantages of both types of transport methods, resulting in stability comparable to frame-by-frame pin-registered transport with real-time, continuous motion via “touch-free” capstan methods. “Touch-free” handling means no mechanical pins touch the film, making the OptiPin option ideal for delicate film stocks. 

The OptiPin system scans the perforations and uses a special film guidance to make it less sensitive to film-edge imperfections. From the perforation images, motion vectors are generated to electronically stabilize the image. For this purpose, the motion vectors are passed through the Spirit’s spatial image processor, which performs vertical and horizontal image positioning at an accuracy of 1/64 of an image pixel. The resulting image stability is comparable to that of pin-registered transports with the benefits of real-time capstan-driven transports.

OptiPin addresses such imperfections in the film as bad splices, flawed edges and positional inconsistencies without affecting scanning speed. After installation, this solution requires no user interaction, and it is ideal for a multitude of applications including new OCN, archival and restoration.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.dft-film.com
Arri Scans at 2K

Arri has introduced the Arriscan 2K, an entry-level model streamlined for high-speed scanning at an extremely competitive price. The new product is specially designed to bring Arri scanning quality and data-centric workflow into emerging DI markets, commercials and 2K or HD re-mastering applications.

The Arriscan 2K was developed to grow with customer needs. A newly designed camera system, an illumination controller and exchangeable function modules give clients the option to start with a basic fast-scanning system, and the unit can later be expanded with various options, allowing customers to keep up with the changing film-transfer market.

No compromise has been made regarding manufacturing quality, image quality, software opportunities or flexibility of film transport. The Arriscan 2K utilizes the Arriscan 3K-by-2K pixel-area sensor, the LED illumination and the image-processing system central to Arriscan technology. It can be seamlessly integrated with standard Arriscan workspaces, and the film transport is the same as with the standard Arriscan, allowing access to 2-, 3- and 4-perf 35mm film, flexible archive modes, a 16mm option and even special modules like the archival gate and upcoming wet-gate systems.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.arri.com
Arricube Package Expands

Arri has expanded its Arricube package with the introduction of Arricube Creator, a versatile software tool that generates 3-D look-up tables for the digital-intermediate process. 

Designed for use in Digital Cinema content-production workflows, the ArriQCP offers quality assurance as     Arricube is a widely implemented tool that matches colors seen in a digital-grading suite to those seen when the same images are projected on film. The technology is based on 3-D LUTs, which can be used either as preview LUTs in DI grading systems or as video-to-logarithmic conversion LUTs in the Arrilaser image-processing path. Prior to the release of Arricube Creator software, these have only been available as universal standard LUTs or on special order as customized LUTs.

With Arricube Creator software, measured or standardized display settings can be combined with customized or universal film profiles, and the digital display can be measured directly with an X-Rite Hubble colorimeter or with measurements from another instrument, which can be imported as text files. (The X-Rite Hubble colorimeter is a cost-effective, off-the-shelf solution for monitor and projector measurement; Arri equips the Hubble with highly accurate reference calibrations that allow it to make the precise measurements required for the generation of 3-D LUTs.) For display characterization with the Hubble colorimeter, remote software can be started on any host to automatically generate a series of color patches; manual mode is also available when a connection between the Arricube software and the display host is not possible. Based on a display profile and a film profile (either universal or customized), the 3-D LUTs can be created in a variety of different formats, supporting virtually any visual-effects or DI system.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.arri.com
Arri Offers Quality Control

Arri has introduced the Arri Quality Control Player, the first Digital Cinema Package-quality control player to enter the market. Developed in close contact with the production environment, the ArriQCP incorporates many useful features for DCP checking, and through cooperation with CineCert LLC, it makes use of the most precise specifications and standards possible. 

Designed for use in Digital Cinema content-production workflows, the ArriQCP offers quality assurance as well as analysis of the Digital Cinema mastering process. Before the final release of the DCP, the ArriQCP performs a compliance test and offers the ability to check the picture and sound quality of the DCP without ingesting it and without the use of a Digital Cinema projector. The ArriQCP allows playback of DCPs directly to an HD or 2K monitor in order to perform quality-control checks; playback controls include common playback features (such as play/reverse, jog and shuttle) in various playback modes (2K, 2K Sub-Res Level from 4K, 3-D and Left or Right from 3-D). Other functions include overall checking of encoding, packaging and DCP validation, file-integrity checks and content-analyzing tasks. 
Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.arri.com
Celtx Gets a Facelift

Following the successful release of Celtx 1.0, Celtx has upgraded to version 2.0.1. Among the new features in version 2.0.1 of the preproduction software suite, a Toolbox icon in the main toolbar now allows users to access a Toolbox page on the Celtx Web site, where add-ons can be downloaded to customize the Celtx software. Currently available Tools include Colored Notes for color-coding script notes, Session Timer for managing writing sessions, Catalogs CSV Export Tool for exporting catalog data as a .csv file, and Non-English Dictionaries for working in several languages; additional Tools will be posted on the Web site on a regular basis.

The underlying code of the Celtx software has been upgraded to Firefox version 3, which has enabled the use of the new TraceMonkey Javascript engine, resulting in faster load times and better behavior for all features. Additionally, the Celtx Calendar and Production Schedule modules have been updated to the new version of the open-source Sunbird calendar application, resulting in an improved user interface and greater stability, and nearly 50 other improvements and bug fixes greatly improve the user experience when working in Celtx 2.0.1.

Lastly, the low-cost online Celtx Studios has also been released. Offering affordable plans for individuals, production teams and schools, Celtx Studios allows users to save every version of every project, reduce emails and meetings by enabling online collaboration, access any production file and reassign seats to different users again and again.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.celtx.com
Toon Boom Announces Studio 5

Toon Boom Animation Inc. has unveiled Studio 5, which brings stop-motion animation to the software’s wide array of existing animation capabilities. Re-branded to reflect the various styles of animation it enables, Studio 5 allows users to become familiar with traditional, digital, rotoscoping, cut-out and stop-motion animation techniques and to combine them for even greater creativity.

Other new features in Studio 5 include time-lapse imagery, Live View/Image Capture to let users see images exactly as they will appear in their movies, green and blue Chroma Key Screens, Onion Skinning for perfectly aligning elements, improved Image Playback Optimization, annotation layers for feedback, easy exporting directly to YouTube or Facebook, easy import of Flip Boom Classic and Animation-ish projects, and an enhanced user interface.
Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.toonboom.com
Toon Boom Services Storyboard Family

Toon Boom Animation Inc. has released Service Pack 1 (SP1) for both Storyboard 1.5 and Storyboard Pro 1.5. In addition to several product enhancements and performance improvements, SP1 includes an Optimize project command to remove unused elements and compress drawings or flatten all drawings in the project; the ability to create one-frame panels; the ability to apply commands and operations to a selection of panels; the ability to select layers throughout a selection of panels; new options for exporting projects in PDF format; new commands to allow camera positions and moves to be copied and pasted; new Save Project option for Mac OSX; and new panel-navigation preferences. Additionally, SP1 for Storyboard Pro 1.5 boasts improved capability to import Final Draft script, bitmap export optimization and new options for exporting to a movie. Current Toon Boom Storyboard 1.5 and Storyboard Pro 1.5 customers can download SP1 for free from their My Products page on Toon Boom’s Web site. 

Additionally, Toon Boom has announced its partnership with iStockphoto, offering Toon Boom users access to free images and special discounts to buy credits. Through iStock, users can import digital images and vector illustrations into Storyboard Pro to build up their storyboards without drawing, and iStock visuals can also be imported into Toon Boom Studio, Animate and Digital Pro. “Partnering with iStock testifies to Toon Boom’s dedication to further facilitate the creative process of our users, as well as widen the horizon of possibilities if they want to combine different techniques,” says Joan Vogelesang, president and CEO of Toon Boom.
Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.toonboom.com
www.istockphoto.com
Toon Boom Animates with Pro, Manager

Toon Boom Animation Inc. has introduced Animate Pro and Manager, both of which are integral parts of the new modularized Harmony Solution, which is ideal for creating traditional, paperless and cut-out animation, all in a network environment. 

Animate Pro builds upon Animate’s feature set while Manager provides full tracking capabilities to monitor the production progress in real time. “Animate Pro and Manager are great additions to the Toon Boom offerings and will bring great value to the animation pipeline, no matter what the animation style or technique is,” says Joan Vogelesang, Toon Boom president and CEO. “Ease of use, flexibility and power are certainly guiding the development of our products, making their adoption and integration in animation studios of any size the right technology choice.”

Toon Boom’s Harmony Solution also includes consultancy services for implementation, custom training, production assistance and custom development. Consultancy services play a critical role in maximizing the benefits of the Toon Boom pipeline from the beginning, and delivering projects of all sizes within budget and on schedule.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.toonboom.com
Pixelfantastic Releases Quantel Plug-In

Pixelfantastic, a London-based HD film and video production and postproduction company, has released a suite of effects plug-ins for Quantel’s eQ, iQ, Pablo and sQ Edit Plus creative systems. The initial release includes 12 plug-ins covering a range of everyday needs from time-code burn-in, counters and timers to an instant camcorder viewfinder effect, progressive picture stretch and pause. Unlike many other plug-ins, which are sold as sets, the Pixelfantastic plug-ins are available for individual purchase and can be downloaded from Pixelfantastic’s Web site. 

“We have developed these plug-ins to meet our own need to automate everyday tasks such as making countdown timers and burning-in time code for copy protection in our own eQ suite,” says Pixelfantastic’s Barrie Williams. “They’re all about time saving, while producing the highest possible quality results on screen. We’ve also concentrated on making them fast and easy to set up, using the pen to interact directly with the image onscreen to give users really fine control.” Steve Owen, Quantel’s director of marketing, adds, “Pixelfantastic’s new plug-ins are a welcome and really useful addition to the 1,000-plus that are already available from our other partners. It’s great that Pixelfantastic are prepared to share the benefits of their day-to-day experience with other Quantel owners around the world.”

Pixelfantastic offers free demos of all plug-ins, which allows Quantel artists to download fully working trial versions to ensure that the effect is exactly what they want before buying it; 12 plug-ins are immediately available, and more will be added in the coming weeks and months.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.pixelfantastic.com
www.quantel.com
Quantel Democratizes 2K Red Online

Quantel has announced that its eQ and Pablo HD online finishing and color-correction systems running the new v4.1 software will be able to carry out conforming, editing, effects, color-correction and deliverables production on 2K (2048x1024) Red projects.

“We’ve been talking to many Red users who want to finish at 2K but up to now felt that Quantel quality was out of their reach,” says Mark Horton, strategic marketing manager for Quantel. “Now, the same toolsets that are used on Oscar-winning movies can be applied to finishing a broad range of Red-shot high-resolution projects, whether digital-intermediate, long-form or commercials. And of course it means sparkling results that do full justice to the quality of the originally shot material, all with an online workflow that is second to none for speed and efficiency.”
Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.quantel.com
Boinx Makes Noise

Noise Industries, developer of visual-effects tools for the postproduction and broadcast markets, has announced that development partner Boinx Software has released the FxTiles FxPack, a new collection of 3-D filters and transitions designed for Adobe After Effects CS3/CS4, Apple Final Cut Studio and Apple Final Cut Express. Powered by FxFactory, the FxTiles FxPack offers seven professional-grade filters and transitions with extensive controls and a slew of presets, allowing users to quickly build complex 3-D movements with stunning results.

“Noise Industries has a unique value proposition for its partner,” says Oliver Breidenbach, CEO of Boinx Software. “The open FxFactory engine is a clever way for developers to build brand-new applications, leveraging a highly stable and mature platform. It also gives developers instant recognition among the very large FxFactory user base.”

The Boinx FxTiles FxPack is available for $49.00 from the Boinx Software Web site. Additional FxFactory plug-in FxPacks are available from the Noise Industries Web site or through Noise Industries Partners.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.noiseindustries.com
www.boinx.com
Sugarfx Packs Effects for Noise

Noise Industries has announced that development partner Sugarfx is releasing two new plug-in FxPacks: RadialWave and H.U.D. (Heads Up Display). FxFactory-powered FxPacks are designed by Noise Industries and their development partners to extend the visual-effects capabilities of Adobe After Effects CS3/CS4, Apple Final Cut Studio and Apple Final Cut Express. Sugarfx is a longtime Noise Industries partner known for developing both exotic and everyday practical-use visual-effects plug-ins for broadcast and post designers. 

The RadialWave plug-in is a hypnotic animation that ships with 14 professionally designed presets; the plug-in also includes extensive controls for those visual-effects artists who want to push the creation boundaries of their designs. The H.U.D. FxPack is a stylization plug-in that alters video so that it looks as though the viewer is looking through an old camera, a high-powered riflescope or another technological gadget.

The Sugarfx RadialWave and H.U.D. FxPacks are available now for $69.00 and $79.00, respectively, and can be purchased through the Noise Industries Web site.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.noiseindustries.com
www.sugarfx.tv
Digieffects Goes FreeForm

Digieffects has introduced the FreeForm AE plug-in for Adobe After Effects. The intuitive and robust warping tool allows users to manipulate a flat object into almost any shape using a mesh in 3-D space.

“FreeForm AE offers After Effects a huge feature that used to push artists to other systems,” says Mark Christiansen, author of After Effects CS4 Visual Effects & Compositing Studio Techniques. “No longer must a job go to Flame for what Autodesk calls ‘extended bicubics.’ The result is fully integrated with After Effects’ own 3-D camera and lighting system.” Robert Sharp, president of Digieffects, adds, “FreeForm AE was originally developed by Chris Bobotis of Mettle in Montreal, Canada. Chris was frustrated that 3-D mesh warping was only available in expensive, high-end systems like Autodesk Flame. He felt it was time somebody made this available in After Effects.”

Powered by a proprietary full-3-D rendering engine, FreeForm AE provides fast, high-quality renders, with full control of manipulation inside the After Effects comp window. The plug-in picks up right where After Effects ends, allowing users to bend, twist, distort and otherwise shape layers directly in After Effects. Additionally, the plug-in ships with dozens of presets to help users save further time.

Priced at $299, FreeForm AE is available directly from Digieffects as well as the company’s distributor and reseller partners. The plug-in is compatible with Adobe After Effects CS3 and CS4 and runs on Mac PPC, Mac Intel, Windows XP and Windows Vista operating systems.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.digieffects.com
ContentAgent Automates Dailies

Root6 Technology has introduced ContentAgent v2.5, an automated high-definition dailies system for film and episodic deliverables. Features of v2.5 include Blu-ray authoring, a software-only version for file-based workflows, and the new ContentCentral and JobAgents products, designed to streamline workflows and cut costs in transcode-intensive environments.

content in all commonly used formats, including 2K and 4K DPX files and R3D format for Red-camera workflows. Utilizing Root6 Technology’s proprietary Platinum Engine for transcode processing, ContentAgent v2.5 obviates the need for specialized hardware in file-based workflows. The system’s automated Blu-ray authoring integrates Rimage disc publishing, while an MPEG2 codec and Auto Reel Assembly Node build upon ContentAgent’s popular reel-creation capabilities, enabling templates to be created for clip opening and closing credits.

For larger-scale, transcode-intensive environments, Root6 Technology has introduced the benefits of parallel processing with ContentCentral and JobAgents; ContentCentral is a job-distribution server with cluster management to intelligently manage and distribute rendering across JobAgents, which are low-cost render accelerators. The combination of ContentCentral and JobAgents will enable users with multiple systems to input new transcoding jobs, which will then be automatically allocated to individual JobAgent processors across the clustered units. Scalable as requirements change, further JobAgents may be added at will to increase performance and spread workload.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.root6technology.com
MTI Film Upgrades Correct DRS

MTI Film has released a new and significantly improved version of its award-winning digital film restoration and finishing software, Correct DRS. Based on comprehensive feedback from customers with experience in restoring hundreds of films, Correct DRS Version 8 provides improved flexibility in system configuration and an enhanced user interface for increased productivity along with a host of additions and improvements to the toolset.

Correct DRS Version 8 adds tools that further the ability of artists to tackle the most challenging restoration issues while also delivering marked improvements in performance. Among the new features is a 3 Layer Registration Tool, which enables the automatic alignment of RGB channels when restoring YCM separation protection masters. Other improvements include compatibility with Windows Vista 64; a new paint tool, allowing users to track a point in order to align a reference frame to a series of target frames; the ability to discretely apply the Sticky Override function to manual corrections for fine-tuning such aspects as grain, density, flicker, rotation and opacity; an updated user interface with tools integrated in a tabbed palette for quick access; improved speed for AutoFilter, De-warp, Stabilization, Flicker and Grain tools; improved performance in Alpha Filter; additional keyboard shortcuts; and improved Help functions attached directly to tools.
Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.mtifilm.com
MTI Adds DA Head Module

MTI Film has debuted a new option for its award-winning Control Dailies solution, the DA Head module, which enables faster-than-real-time power of Control Dailies to facilitate the processing of digitally acquired dailies from virtually any source. Control Dailies for Digital Acquisition (DA) supports Red One, Panasonic P2, Panavision Genesis, Grass Valley Viper and Arri D-21 digital camera systems, as well as media in DPX file format.

“File-based cameras and scanners require powerful hardware and software processing to prepare raw recordings for editorial finishing,” says David McClure, product manager for MTI Film. “Our new DA Head option for Control Dailies is the answer, providing fast, high-quality conversion to HD or SD from Red Code and other file formats directly to the Control Dailies SAN.”

Control Dailies DA can be used as part of the larger Control Dailies ecosystem —with Control Color and Convey — to form a complete, tapeless solution for processing digitally acquired dailies. In this workflow, the DA Head is used to ingest and decode digitally acquired source media; Control Color is then employed to perform primary color-correction or to apply LUTs prepared during production; and Control Dailies is used to synchronize audio and lay-off up to three output streams to deliver HD or SD tape while Convey prepares the required deliverables, such as DNxHD for editorial and DVD or Blu-ray for dailies review.

“Color-correction is applied on the output, and it’s done in real time with no time lost for rendering,” says McClure. “The workflow can be configured to apply or not to apply color-correction to individual output streams. You can create a high-definition master tape for archival purposes while, at the same time, producing color-corrected streams for editorial and dailies screening.” Primary color-correction performed via Control Color is ASC CDL compliant, ensuring complete control over the look of the film thanks to compatibility with other standard postproduction systems.

Algorithms developed by MTI Film for the DA Head have resulted in faster decoding and resolution conversion for certain types of digitally acquired media files. The system’s ability to decode Bayer filter patterns, for example, allows for the real-time processing of Red camera files.

Control Dailies DA is available as a standalone system, or the DA Head module can be integrated into an existing Control Dailies system. 

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.mtifilm.com
Xytech Systems Deploys MediaPulse

Xytech Systems Corporation, a leading provider of media business software and services for workflow management, resource scheduling and media-asset management, has unveiled MediaPulse, a revolutionary application suite for asset and resource-based media workflows, offering businesses a high-performance, end-to-end solution, extending from initial request through delivery and billing.

“We listened to our customers and dug deeply into our experience and expertise,” says Richard Gallagher, CEO of Xytech Systems. “MediaPulse is a radical departure from other applications. An easily modified user interface, streamlined workflow and automated operations are key components of MediaPulse, fundamental to our thinking, and a high priority for customers.”

MediaPulse was developed using the latest technology benefits of the .NET framework to create an entirely new product specifically designed to improve, streamline and automate media operations. The powerful, multi-tiered architecture provides significantly increased performance and flexibility over traditional client/server applications. Innovative features of the application suite include the Layout Editor, which enables users to create, move or delete any field, column and tab with simple drag-and-drop techniques.

Another new system, MediaPulse Express, is a business process-management solution targeted at small-to-medium-sized production and postproduction companies, corporate-media departments and television stations; this cost-effective system provides an easy-to-implement, easy-to-learn solution that can support up to 20 concurrent users. Express provides bidding, facility management, resource scheduling, asset management and invoice components.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.xytechsystems.com
Cinegy Streamlines Workflow

Cinegy has announced its workflow, digital-asset-management and archive solution for the broadcast and media industry: Cinegy Workflow. An integrated, all-in-one solution for media workgroups, the PC-based Workflow platform consists of a suite of tools, applications and open APIs encompassing every aspect of television production, including ingest, logging, storyboarding, editing, postproduction, play-out and media archiving.

Cinegy products are based on Microsoft Windows Server 2008 Enterprise, Microsoft SQL Server 2008, Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 and Microsoft Silverlight 2; Cinegy will soon add support for Microsoft Silverlight 3 and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007. “Cinegy is one of our key partners utilizing our technology to develop robust digital-content-management solutions,” says Gabriela Di Piazza, managing director for Media and Entertainment in the Communications Sector at Microsoft. “This solution gives media companies a competitive edge, enabling them to streamline content production and shorten the time to market for new media services.”

Cinegy Workflow helps small production houses and international broadcasters alike to streamline everything from production to multi-platform delivery. The platform is entirely based on standard IT hardware and non-proprietary storage technology. It is also modular and scalable; it can be applied to a wide variety of production environments of differing size, scope and purpose. Additionally, it is low cost, easily deployable and simple to use.

Online Online Exclusive
contact info:  
www.cinegy.com
Panavision, Loumasystems Unveil Louma 2

Panavision Remote Systems and Loumasystems have introduced the Louma 2, a new-generation camera-movement system built on an open-architecture platform. The new system expands Louma’s telescopic crane technology exponentially with the introduction of ShotAssist, an open-architecture, programmable software platform that enables cinematographers to plan intricate multi-axis shots and execute them with less rehearsal and fewer takes than other systems. Master/slave coordination between any axis of the crane and remote head is now possible.

“Today’s technologically and visually sophisticated audiences are pushing directors and cinematographers to be ever more creative in developing eye-arresting shots,” says Jean-Marie Lavalou, Academy Award-winning co-founder of Loumasystems. “We designed the Louma 2 to meet those demands by creating an open-architecture system so flexible that the crane will be able to adapt to the constantly evolving ideas of directors and cameramen.”           
    Specifically designed for the film industry, the Louma 2 boasts smooth, stable and quiet operation in all of its movements. Furthermore, the Louma 2’s ShotAssist software extends the original Louma crane’s back-pan compensation to every axis, including pan, tilt and telescope of the arm, as well as pan, tilt and roll of the remote head.
    Pan, tilt and roll limits are all available at the touch of a button with adjustable ramps to aid framing. One of the many applications of this software is the ability to create straight-line “dolly” shots, with the telescope compensating for the arcing of the boom while the head self corrects with the back-pan compensation. The Louma 2 frees operators of the “mechanical” work of compensating for the crane, and frees them to focus purely on the art of framing.
    The Louma 2 boasts a newly developed arm, allowing over 24’ of telescopic travel. A two- or three-axis remote head and leveling gear can be switched easily from overslung to underslung and back. Additionally, the remote head is fully equipped with Preston F.I.Z. and remote-start connections, as well as 12-volt and 24-volt camera and accessory power hookups. The new ultra-rigid arm and remote-head construction permit a high degree of image stability, and all cabling is internal, so there are no cables running along the exterior of the arm. The unit also comes with custom trolleys and an operator’s cart, and it can be ready to shoot in less than 60 minutes.
    Key specifications of the Louma 2 include a maximum lens height when overslung of 37’, and when underslung of 32’ 10”; a telescopic range of 24’ 2”; a maximum telescopic speed of 7.5’ per second; a maximum camera load with two-axis head of 100 pounds, and with three-axis head of 66 pounds; a clearance of 4’ 11” wide by 7’ high; a maximum length of 32’; a track width of 3’ 3”; and a maximum overall weight of 3850 pounds.
    Louma 2 cranes are now available in Los Angeles (Panavision Remote Systems), New York (Panavision New York), Sydney (Panavision Australia), London (Louma UK) and Paris (Loumasystems).

contact info:

 Panavision Remote Systems (818) 316-1080

 
www.panavision.com
www.loumasystems.biz
www.louma2.com
Cineped Provides 360-Degree Support

Cineped has announced the availability of its panoramic 360-degree camera-support system, which enables camera operators to capture exceptional images with ease. More than a dolly or tripod, the system features a 42", 360-degree rotational sliding camera plate; extendable, automatic-positioning telescopic column; digital remote control; and a diamond-style mobile base with heavy-duty rubber wheels. Designed to allow for a wealth of camera angles — including horizontal and vertical movement, panoramic/360-degree movement and compound camera moves — Cineped maneuvers with fine-tuned, virtually noise-free operation.

With a weight capacity of 120 pounds, the sliding rotational camera plate can carry multiple cameras simultaneously. The telescopic column, with a base height of 58" (with camera), extends to a height of 74.5". When the telescoping column is removed, the sliding rotational camera plate can attach directly to the mobile base for capturing low-angle shots. The mobile base is a mere 27" wide, enabling setup in tight shooting spaces. Cineped is also ideal for smooth transitions, extreme close-ups, and tabletop and POV shots.

For studio or location shoots, Cineped’s completely modular design allows easy transport and fast camera repositioning. Including the sliding camera plate (45 pounds), telescopic column (39 pounds) and mobile base (70 pounds), the total weight is 154 pounds, and assembly is quick and trouble-free.

Manufactured in the U.S.A., the Cineped system includes a digital remote control box, a battery/charger, an AC/DC converter and a low-mode adaptor. 

contact info:  
www.cineped.com
Arri CSC Relocates, Expands

Arri CSC will relocate its New York camera-rental department to a custom-designed facility adjoining the company’s lighting and grip division in Secaucus, N.J. The adjoining buildings have a combined footprint of 91,000 square feet; the new camera-rental facility is 36,000 square feet, representing an expansion of over 50 percent.

The new camera department will feature multiple prep bays and four dedicated testing rooms surrounded by optical, mechanical, digital and technical support departments, all on one  level. The Secaucus location also accommodates parking for more than 70 vehicles, with no impact on vehicle loading and unloading via dedicated bays.

contact info:

Arri CSC
25 Enterprise Ave.
North, Secaucus, N.J., 07094

(212) 757-0906

 
www.arricsc.com
Porta-Jib Goes Exploring

Porta-Jib has announced the Explorer, an all-in-one lightweight jib/tripod/trolley/dolly system for cameras weighing up to 20 pounds. The Explorer’s various configurations are made possible by a custom four-sided extrusion and corresponding dovetail clamps with spring-loaded safety pins.

The jib can be miniaturized to 18", or it can be extended to put the camera 9' in the air. With the addition of two monopods, the jib becomes a 6'-long elevated trolley system; the jib arms simply fold over to become the trolley’s 6' rails, and the conversion takes only 3 minutes. A gas lifter in the tripod provides 35 pounds of vertical lift, making leveling the rails and setting their height a quick one-person operation.

By removing two more quick-release screws, the entire rail system can be lifted off the tripod and placed on the ground for low-angle work; the tripod’s spreader then detaches, and the spreader’s legs and feet become the leveling supports for the rails on the ground or on a tabletop. The rails come in 3' lengths, so longer configurations can be obtained with the purchase of more rails and clamps.

The versatile spreader boasts two other functions as well. First, since the legs are made of the 4-sided extrusion, the feet of the tripod clamp positively anywhere along the length of the leg, allowing the tripod to be rigidly mounted with its legs completely vertical like a center column. This column-like position allows the arm a greater range of motion than if restricted by outward-angled legs. Secondly, the spreader can transform into a 3-wheel dolly by simply removing the leveling feet and clamping on a set of wheels. The Explorer’s wheels are also unique in that they can function as track wheels on traditional steel track, PVC pipe or Porta-Jib FlexTrak, and they additionally function as floor wheels, which is especially useful when repositioning the jib or trolley system.

The jib’s rigid and lightweight (22 pound) design is ideal for shoots in remote locations. The Explorer also features a weight bucket, eliminating the need for steel counterweights; the bucket can be filled with dirt, sand or rocks once on location.

The Explorer jib and trolley system can mount to any 100mm tripod, but using the Explorer tripod provides the added ability to clamp the legs vertically. Even with the jib’s small footprint, its 36" arm boasts a 64" lift, allowing operators to put the camera approximately 9' off the ground.

The Explorer can be purchased as a complete system — comprising the jib, tripod, trolley and dolly — or as separate components.

contact info:  
www.porta-jib.com
Polecam Extends to 7th Heaven

Polecam has announced its long-reaching, truly portable camera rig, Polecam 7th Heaven. Incorporating seven rigid carbon-fiber elements, which interlock to achieve an 8-meter reach (approximately 26'), 7th Heaven delivers unprecedented versatility in terms of horizontal and vertical camera location while giving operators total control of boom angle, pan and tilt.

“Like the standard 6-meter Polecam, 7th Heaven can be carried anywhere and set up or dismantled in less than 10 minutes, without need for spanners, screwdrivers or any other assembly tools,” says Steffan Hewitt, Polecam’s founder and managing director. “The 6-meter span is ideal for most practical purposes, but 7th Heaven’s 8-meter reach allows much closer wildlife shooting where you want to get near your subject without risk of being eaten. It also has obvious advantages for live events such as concerts or sports, and at crowded news briefings where you can go clean over the heads of other reporters.”

7th Heaven is made possible by a new formulation of high-rigidity carbon-fiber elements, also now supplied as standard with the five-element Polecam rig. Using a combination of laminated and spun carbon-fiber with 24-percent more fiber, the new formulation delivers a 15-percent increase in boom stiffness.

 7th Heaven is fully compatible with all standard Polecam accessories, including heads, underwater housings, HD and SD cameras, CCUs and recorders. It also retains the internal ducts and total freedom from stabilizer stanchions that allow wiring to be routed inside the rig rather than left exposed to snagging or other physical abuse; this also saves on rigging and de-rigging time by eliminating the need for external cable straps and allowing surplus cable to be stowed within the boom.

contact info:  
www.polecam.com
ACS France Supplies Europe with PFC Ultimate Arm

ACS France recently signed an exclusive partnership with Performance Filmworks Canada, becoming the European supplier of the PFC Ultimate Arm, a robotic crane fixed on a 4x4 AMG Mercedes ML55. This system has provided amazing results for the film industry, performing even in off-road and inclement-weather conditions.

The PFC Ultimate Arm is a lightweight robotic arm that can be used on most any automobile as well as boats or trains. ACS France is offering the Ultimate Arm integrated onto the Mercedes ML55. The arm is mounted on top of the vehicle, and the camera installed on the Lev Head or Stab-C Compact. The crew works in the safety and comfort of the ML, operating the head via joysticks or wheels.

 The PFC Ultimate Arm was honored with a Technical Achievement Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The arm can rotate 360 degrees in six seconds, and the vehicle can travel at speeds up to 100 miles per hour while maintaining a steady image. The camera’s highest position is 5.4 meters (17.7') above ground, and it can dip to below ground level. The PFC Ultimate Arm has also been used in extreme temperatures ranging from 129°F in Death Valley to
-40°F in Alaska.

ACS France specializes in equipment that consistently produces unique and inspiring images, be it aerial filming, flying cameras (Cablecam) or running cameras (Speedtrack).

contact info:  
www.aerial-france.fr
www.performancefilmworks.com
Tuffpak Heads Abroad

Manufactured by Nalpak, Tuffpak tripod cases are now available in Europe. Florian Granderath, founder of Camera Support Granderath, stocks all sizes of the Tuffpak case line and maintains a distribution network throughout Europe. 

Features of Tuffpak cases include an octagonal shape, preventing the cases from rolling; wheels for most models, making transportation easy; protected and recessed handles, increasing storage space and decreasing shipping dimensions; and rotationally molded construction, eliminating seams and welds, and increasing wall thickness at all bends. 
contact info:  
www.casu.tv
www.nalpak.com
Plasticase Unleashes Nanuk

Nanuk is a new line of professional-quality protective Plasticase, designed for professionals who need to rely on robust, lightweight and high-performance cases for protection in the harshest environments. 

Plasticase developed Nanuk’s new, high-impact NK-7 resin to withstand environmental extremes. With their rounded corners and reinforced wall construction, Nanuk cases are built to absorb shocks, providing optimal impact resistance and protection to sensitive equipment. All Nanuk cases are also watertight and impervious to dust and dirt.

Nanuk cases come loaded with numerous standard features valued by professionals, such as the PowerClaw Latching System, which prevents the cases from opening unexpectedly during transport or when dropped. Additionally, the foldable handle is molded from NK-7 resin and over-molded with soft-touch rubber for greater comfort. As a result of the exceptionally robust construction, Plasticase offers a lifetime warranty on its Nanuk cases.

“We invested heavily in R&D in order to develop Nanuk,” says Jean-Pierre Grenier, president of Plasticase. “We wanted to produce cases that are optimally functional, very stylish and able to endure the toughest environmental conditions. Professionals often work in rigorous surroundings and conditions using valuable materials and equipment. Therefore, you can’t afford to compromise when it comes to quality and reliability. With Nanuk, we provide a product that performs extremely well on all fronts.”

The Nanuk line of protective cases currently comes in seven formats and seven standard colors. Plasticase is already working on a new generation of the Nanuk line, which will feature larger sizes as well as wheels and pull handles.

contact info:  
www.plasticase.com
www.nanukcase.com
Convergent Design Ships NanoFlash

Convergent Design has introduced the NanoFlash portable HD/SD recorder/player. Using the Sony XDCam 422 Codec, NanoFlash records HD/SD video and audio onto Compact Flash (CF) cards. 

Featuring HD/SD-SDI, HDMI and analog audio I/O, NanoFlash delivers exceptional video quality at user-adjustable video bit rates up to 160 Mbps (XDCam 422 Codec) or 220 Mbps 4:2:2 (I-Frame-only), making its images virtually indistinguishable from uncompressed, even when capturing high-motion, complex scenery. 24-bit 48 KHz uncompressed audio (embedded or consumer-level analog) complements the video, and both are conveniently stored in either MXF or QuickTime file format on CF cards. (The NanoFlash boasts dual CF card slots.) The footage can then be played and edited directly off the cards or copied to a hard drive via a third-party external USB or Firewire-800 CF card reader.

Unlike Firewire-based recorders, NanoFlash bypasses the camera’s built-in Codec to record at higher-quality levels. The never-compressed HD/SD-SDI or HDMI output from a live camera source is fed directly into the NanoFlash, maintaining the pristine quality directly off the CCD/CMOS sensors. Additionally, NanoFlash offers on-set playback without any of the rewind/re-cue issues associated with tape.

The lightweight (less than 1 pound), low-power (6 watts when active, 0.2 watts in standby) NanoFlash boasts silent operation, with no fans or moving parts, and rugged, solid-state construction in an all-aluminum case. The near-universal NLE support — including Avid, Final Cut Pro, Edius, Vegas and soon Premiere — provides users with a wide array of editing options, and compatibility with nearly all HD/SD formats — including 1080i60/50, 1080psf30/25/24, 720p60/50 and 480i/576i — allows NanoFlash to be used with a wide range of cameras and video sources.

The NanoFlash is now shipping, with a suggested price of $2,995. 

contact info:  
www.convergent-design.com
Canon Releases Firmware Update for 5D Mark II

Responding to user requests, Canon U.S.A. Inc. has issued a firmware update enabling manual exposure control in the EOS 5D Mark II digital SLR’s video mode. 

With the ability to capture full HD video on a 24mm x 36mm sensor, the EOS 5D Mark II has been enthusiastically received by studios, independent filmmakers and professional videographers. However, the consensus was that the camera needed manual exposure control within its video mode if it was to reach its full potential. Now, after months of extensive engineering and testing, Canon offers a free, downloadable firmware update that gives users full control over ISO, aperture and shutter speed while capturing video.

For more information and to download the free firmware update, visit www.usa.canon.com.

contact info:  
www.usa.canon.com
Cineparts Energizes Slurp-O-Meter

Cineparts has introduced the Slurp-O-Meter, a voltmeter, ammeter, power meter and amp-hour meter in one rugged housing, enabling at-a-glance monitoring of electrical parameters. All parameters are shown simultaneously and update approximately two times per second. 

The Slurp-O-Meter boasts a low internal resistance of 0.03 Ohm, so it does not affect measurement and can remain in line with the electrical appliance operating for control purposes. Additionally, the Slurp-O-Meter can be configured for multiple applications via different Y-adapter cables; Cineparts offers cables for 12-volt XLR, 24-volt XLR, Arri/Fischer and Red/LEMO connections.

Measuring approximately 5.7"x3.4"x1.4", the instrument features a protruded aluminum-alloy housing and is equipped with rubber bumpers and a 4mm-thick hardened multi-coated protection glass for the display. It is also splash-water-protected and can operate from -4°F to 104°F.

Cineparts also offers a “Big” version of the Slurp-O-Meter specially designed for users of the Sony F23 and F35 cameras, providing an overview of the two separate DC lines simultaneously on two displays.

contact info:  
www.cineparts.net
That Cat Intros 2500 Slider

That Cat Camera Support, LLC has introduced the Silent Cat 2500 camera slider. Weighing 30 pounds and featuring a 29"-long track, allowing 19" of travel, the Silent Cat 2500 is perfect for working in close quarters.

The Silent Cat 2500 offers three camera-mounting positions when attached to a dolly or any standard Mitchell mount: top mount, underslung and cantilevered; the custom counterweight tray should be used whenever the slider is cantilevered.

That Cat is also offering new, lower pricing across its entire range of camera sliders, and the company has announced that its Silent Cat sliders are now available in Los Angeles for daily rental at Birns & Sawyer.

contact info:  
www.cameraslider.com
www.birnsandsawyer.com
IDX Offers High-Load Batteries

IDX System Technology, Inc., has introduced the company’s new premier power system, the E-HL9 Series, a high-performance, high-load Lithium Ion battery line designed for the age of professional HD production. 

Specifically geared for the industry’s power-hungry video and film camera systems, the E-HL9 Series enables productions to shoot continuously for long periods, while handling the extreme in-rush associated with many of today’s most sophisticated recording and lighting systems. With a 10-amp capacity and nearly 50-percent-greater power delivery over previous IDX batteries, the new models deliver the battery energy demanded by today’s intensive production equipment.  

To sustain performance, E-HL9 Series batteries are designed with a high-level class of cell specifications, and an accelerated high-rate discharge handles up to 10 amps/120 watts. The series can also be used in critical situations requiring a high DC power draw, such as on-board lighting applications. While delivering a significant power payload, the high current draw is engineered not to adversely affect the longevity of the battery. Its architecture results in an extended overall life cycle of nearly 10 percent.

The E-HL9 Series comprises two high-energy Lithium Ion batteries, the E-HL9 and the E-HL9S. The latter is an economical alternative battery with the same single-unit power capacity as the E-HL9 and a three-LED power indicator display; this standalone version has the durability of all IDX batteries, including triple safety, and features such as a two-year product warranty. The E-HL9 on the other hand offers one of the most flexible solutions to expandable capacity, IDX’s PowerLink feature, which can directly connect two batteries, delivering a total power capacity of 176 watt hours. The E-HL9 also supports Digi-View, enabling a viewfinder reading for battery levels in many cameras, and a five-LED power status display delivers an accurate, incremental capacity reading. IDX’s computer-based Battery Management System (BMS) can also be used on the E-LH9 for enhanced diagnostics and a comprehensive review of the battery’s history of use.

The E-HL9 Series is safe for air transport; DOT/IATA regulations make it possible for unlimited spare Li-ion batteries under 100 watt hours to be transported in carry-on luggage.

contact info:  
www.idxtek.com
VES Presents Entertainment Production Summit

The Visual Effects Society will present a Production Summit for the greater entertainment industry on Oct. 24 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Marina del Rey. The event will bring together practitioners from all crafts and offer a rare opportunity to examine innovative approaches to producer challenges, technology developments and the globalization of the production industry. 

Eric Roth, the executive director of the VES, observes, “Because the entertainment industry is changing so rapidly — on the creative, technological and business fronts — we’re bringing together all industry stakeholders to discuss the challenges we all face in looking at our entertainment future. The Production Summit will be a central meeting place of common concerns and challenges that will create new dialogue and solutions across all guilds and studios.”

The summit’s sessions will include “Through the Kaleidoscope,” three interactive sessions delivering a multifaceted examination of prep through post; “XRay: Surviving (and thriving in) the Postproduction Pipeline in the 21st Century”; and “Hot, Flat and (Getting) Crowded: The Business of Production and the New Global Economy.” The summit will bring together an international group of directors, producers, cinematographers, editors, technologists and visual-effects leaders responsible for moving the industry into the next decade.

“The industry overall is currently being challenged by enormous economic constraints, and has responded by starting fewer projects,” says Jeffrey A. Okun, VES board chair. “They want to do them fast and inexpensively, while at the same time reaching for the highest quality. This mandate is causing tremendous stresses and strains throughout the entire pipeline of projects. This summit will lead the discussion on how we all will get to the future, and by envisioning the future we can begin to create it.”

contact info:  
www.visualeffectssociety.com