Digital Video Expo – Post Production Keynote
September 30, 2010, Digital video Expo, Pasadena, CA—Oliver Peters, freelance editor and colorist described "Post Production Trends for 2011"in one of the last talks in the program. Cameras are driving a lot of changes in postproduction. The industry is seeing new codecs, recording media, and many other changes.
Next-generation processing will use digital, still, and motion cameras. The latest cameras from modular and permit a RAW workflow, which gives the maximum ability to change content in post. Some cameras are producing outputs compatible with multiple editing tools and some even have a direct to edit format. Now, multiple workflows are possible; online, off-line, still, and RAW.
New equipment is looking towards hybrid production, with a mix of film and digital, SD card and solid-state drive, and other combinations. One new trend is people are starting to use digital SLRs plus numerous accessories for video productions. HD SLRs return production to a film-style double system where video and audio are recorded separately and synchronized in edit.
All equipment manufacturers are going towards tapeless production, so all content is delivered directly to the digital editing systems. Studios, however, are still using videotape masters for television production. Editing tools are reflecting these changes in inputs and are now used as videotape recorder replacements and recording files directly in an editing format like Pro-res.
Although there's been a lot of noise and bluster about stereoscopic 3-D, this is likely remain a niche for some time. Content will include sports and concerts as well as a limited number of theater releases, but 3-D production costs remain a high barrier to entry at the production level. The challenges for production companies is to choose between rigs and integrated cameras and then find a post workflow that works.
Some of the 3-D editing tools are only capable of off-line use and many have resolution challenges. Fixing all the problems in a 3-D production include left and right eye alignment, color matching, and a host of other psycho-optical challenges. A simpler alternative is to shoot in 2D and convert. Hardware for this process is now coming into the market.
These tools do most of the work well but still leaves about 20 percent of the work to be done in the manual process. The basic flow is to start within interlace video which is then interpolated for left and right to create the depth space differentials. The hardware creates anomalies in color and space alignment especially for oranges and reds.
Storage is becoming increasingly important and, fortunately, increasingly inexpensive. Other communications infrastructure is helping to control the costs and new SAN configuration management tools minimize the IT knowledge is needed to set up the system. As a result, collaborative editing using shared storage is becoming viable.
Nonlinear editing is changing an increasing rate. Now most vendors are delivering software that runs on standard hardware platform rather than bundling hardware and software. The user interfaces like control panels permit more open and capable software. More software tools now take in alternate inputs without additional transcoding further reducing the need for proprietary hardware.
Coupled with this ability to read other formats as native, tools are now also changing the way they access and use metadata. Some of the new software releases permit presets for desktop computer use that are different than the presets for the dedicated hardware. Another change in tool flows is to use lower-level tools for first edits and then finish on the high-end tools. This flow reduces tool costs and allows more editors to work on many smaller segments which are combined in the final.