TV Technology by Jay Ankney
Editors will be relied upon to realize the potential of this new production format.
PART 1 - At the 2013 NAB Show, 4K came into its own with new cameras, monitors and processing systems touting its high-resolution glory, despite the fact that outside of digital cinema, there are precious few possibilities to actually deliver 4K to a mass audience.
Still, with quadruple the information of HD contained in the massive 4K files, it is going to be the editors who will be relied upon to realize the potential of this new production format. So this month and next, this column will take a look at the edit systems and enabling technologies that are available to us if we’re going to take on the 4K challenge.
4K production for television has already become a reality, with Alex Buono, DP for the “Saturday Night Live” film crew shooting the show’s preproduced comedy segments using a Canon 500. But, instead of trying to store the pristine quality of that camera’s RAW files, he has been using AJA’s new Ki Pro Quad digital recorder to convert them directly to Apple’s ProRes format for editing.
“Not only do we save a ton of processing time,” Buono said, “but we’re also chewing up way less hard drive space.” Of course, his final delivery format is HD, but Buono is helping future-protect the “SNL” comedy roll-ins, and that is one of the great benefits of shooting in 4K even today.
Avid’s Director of Product Design Ron Wallace recognizes there will be a time gap between the introduction of 4K acquisition devices and ways to consume their output. That’s why v7.0 of Avid’s Media Composer software being released this month can ingest 4K files onto an HD timeline, but only output a high-definition master.
“What makes 4K unique is that you are working at more sophisticated color spaces like log color space, and the need to set LUTs [Look Up Tables],” Wallace said. “There is simply more color gamut in 4K than in HD, and each manufacturer has its own log curve to work with. So Media Composer 7.0 will let you set your own looks, use the manufacturer’s LUTs or use your own color decision list as well.” read more...
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