Two Interesting Developments from Blackmagic-Design

First off, the long awaited PC version of DaVinci Resolve was released to public beta last week.  Both the full version and the free Resolve-Lite now have PC variants available.  You can bet I will be setting up a high end PC based system to run it on at work, since that is the only step in our workflow that we currently use a Mac for.  The big question is going to be file format and codec support.  We currently use DPX and Cineform MOVs for our system in the office, but eventually using Cineform AVIs would fit more seamlessly into our workflow.

Unlike with the Mac version, they don’t seem to be promoting the idea of using the Lite version on a laptop, instead recommending two GPUs and a full workstation class system as a minimum.  For real-time SDI based HD playback, that is obviously necessary, but there are also benefits to being able to use a more portable system.  I want to learn the software, and ideally would set it up on my Quadro based laptop, but after reading the documentation, I decided to start on my larger workstation instead.  Running it on a laptop will require support for a decent compressed format, and while Cineform currently provides that on the Mac side, the PC version of Resolve does not yet support that codec.

I downloaded the Lite version and have been playing around with it, but it is not a very intuitive program.  I am about fifty pages into the manual, but have yet to be able to get a sequence of content I cut together in CS5.5 into Resolve successfully.  I can’t export it into any format Resolve will read, besides uncompressed HD, which my array is not designed to handle.  Using an EDL to link to my Canon 5D source files is giving me all sorts of issues as well, which is something we experienced at the office when we first switched from Speedgrade to Resolve.  Clearly it is going to take some time to learn how too get anything useful done in the program.  If I do get it to work, the automatic tracking tools are the features I am most interested in playing with.

In other major news that doesn’t directly affect me, Blackmagic-Design also acquired Teranex last week.  The first major change they made was cutting the price of Teranex’s primary flagship product, the VC100, from $90,000 to $20,000.  This is similar to what happened when they acquired DaVinci last year, but much more extreme.  It will be interesting to see if some of that high end image processing technology makes it into future Decklink cards, or any similar products.

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