Electric Pictures relies on Black Magic Design

For years we have been watching BlackMagic. The products they have released, at the Earth-shattering prices points they set, have keep us very interested in following their progress. As a Telecine-Centric Post Production Company, we use a variety of solutions to get our work done. When the first of the Blackmagic Decklink capture cards became available, we built a system around it. It was different from the other capture solution we used at the time. I would call it bare-bones, because our other solutions had acceleration built in and offered proprietary codecs to further speed up their system. This was all in the era of slower computers, and the cards we were using then needed those features to work well. Blackmagic's approach was different. Decklink was released right at the point when computers got substantially faster and could handle the video processing workload without all the proprietary tech that others used. Good timing, Blackmagic! And so I became a fan.

 

Over the years we have added BMD products in other areas. We now have 5 BMD Multibridge workstaions for capture, processing, and editing. They are linked with a BMD Videohub SD/HD SDI Router. We have a legacy DaVinci 2KPlus color corrector that controls our DFT Telecines, as well as a current DaVinci Resolve DI workstation. We have a legacy Teranex Image Restore system, as well as the new BMD Teranex 2D. We rely on our BMD Ultrascope to monitor our signals. We are using several of the HDLink SDI to DVI converters to monitor various signals. And all of these use the Videohub for routing.

And we have a new product wishlist as well. BMD is an innovator. Their internal product development is world-class, but they have also acquired older technology companies that have a huge legacy of intellectual property and talented engineering staffs. DaVinci, Teranex, Echolab, Cintel. There seems to be a pattern here. DaVinci Teranex and Cintel all centered their tech in the world of film and film output processing. So I am wishing for several new products from BMD.

First is a new low-cost film scanner. I would define low-cost in this case as 15000-20000 USD. Perhaps two models- small guage Reguler8 and Super8, and a larger format machine for 16 and 35 mm. I believe this is technically possible to build at this price point. And BMD owns patents and has the engineering and manufacturing experience to actually deliver.

Second, an advanced film-based processing unit that extends the Teranex capability, and integrates the techniques and algorithms used in DaVinci Revival. The capabilities would include scratch detection and correction, dirt detection and correction, grain management, flicker correction, and stabilization. Cintel had products in this area, Teranex had products in this area, and of course DaVinci did as well. BMD now owns all of this technology. Actually, this product could take the form of software, as well. Perhaps a new Revival, integrating the knowledge and experience of Teranex and Cintel into it, and porting it to Windows and MAC at a new market-stealing price point. This could take another form, as well, and that would be as features in Resolve. We have seen a taste of this with the Revival defect tool, which allows fixing of individual areas on a frame by frame basis. Very nice, and a good example of what can be accomplished. But Revival has automatic functions that that allow entire films to be processed automatically. This is what is needed in any new product.

NAB is about a month away as I write this. I am hoping for these new products to be announced in some form. Black Magic, surprise me!

But if they don't, I still have a wishlist for their current products. First on my list is Revival, the full version. The second wish is for the wonderful Audio Monitor, and third is the Smartscope Duo 4K. These are on my list for the coming year. Unless they release those new products!

Client Comments

quote1-40The preview disc you sent looks stunning--over the weekend, I put it up on a large screen at UCSC with a Christie projector just to check and Moumen Smihi was thrilled. We showed his Si Moh that you did and it also looked great.
Peter Limbrick, Associate Professor, Film and Digital Media , UC Santa Cruzquote2-40

quote1-40I premiered many scenes from your recent 35mm transfers in the new Lost Landscapes of San Francisco, and they were a HUGE hit. I am very much looking forward to doing more work with you. Thanks so much!
Rick Prelinger, The Prelinger Archivesquote2-40

quote1-40I just had to let you know how happy my client was with the quality of the 8mm film transfer you did for him. At 6000 ft of film (25 years of his families' life) there was a lot to deal with. Your technical expertise was very helpful in choosing the right digital format both for the subsequent edit we went through, and in hitting my clients budget and quality concerns. Feel free to use me as a reference at anytime. The whole experience was professional and very easy. Once again thank you.
John Kelly, Scott Video Productionsquote2-40

quote1-40These look great! Thanks so much for sending! Thanks! More on the way soon!
Steve Stanchfield, Thunderbean Animationquote2-40