Thursday, May 28, 2009

Adobe CS4 Updates for May 2009

Just got this post from Adobe:

The new CS4 video updates will be available late tonight/Friday morning . These updates contain several new updates and several critical fixes for After Effects.

Some of the new features are:

Major Speed improvements for Media Encoder (new support for RED)
New RED R3D workflow & Raw setting panel
Avid Import & Export (We are currently testing FCP Export)
DVD/VOB support (edit directly off the DVD !)
Faster/smooth AVCHD playback
Faster project loading
New Frame Export
And more......

We also showed several things at NAB 2009 that we have cooking in the Adobe Labs and we are planning to beta test a few of these new features this summer. The plan is to make these available on the site:

XDCAM Export
Finalcut Pro Export

You can catch a new video here which shows all of the new CS4 updates and features in action on Adobe TV.

The 3 updates are:
After Effects 9.02 
Premiere Pro 4.1
Media Encoder 4.1

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Blackpowder Digital Cinema Systems released...

Our new digital cinema CPU's are up on the site:

We are very proud to have worked with Globalstor Data Corporation on these. In our opinion, they are among the best RED and DI systems in the world.

One already deployed to Korea and another to Walt Disney Company...

Monday, May 25, 2009

Want to optimize your DIT work on a RED shoot?

This just came via email: 

"Things have really ran quicker, smoother, better here than any show I've been on in the last year and a half and I've done well over fifty unique RED shows.  The gear you sent me out here with totally kicks ass and makes the process of data management, dailies creation a lot faster and tranparent allowing me to put more concentration on the creative editorial process and ultimately offering more to a production."

Want to know more?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Want to raise $2.0M for your next movie?

You want to raise some money for your new film? Do this:

1. Go out and buy MovieMaker's most recent issue (#80)
2. Read pages 28-29

Fantastic article by Jeffrey Goodman--who was determined to raise $2,000,000 for his film. He actually did it and has a feature under his belt to show for it:

You can also follow his weekly blog "Adventures in Self-Releasing" [LINK]

Monday, May 18, 2009

Official Silverado Predictions for WWDC

Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference kicks off Monday, June 9th 2009 at 10 AM.

Here is what I think is likely happening this year at WWDC:
  • Snow Leopard--released? I'd have to say no. But release date announced? Yes--I'd call this at 100%. Apple recently froze the API's for Snow Leopard, so there shouldn't be much more under-the-hood work to do there.
  • iPhone OS 3.0--I'd have to say this is 80% yes. Why not 100% There has been a lot of chatter about background apps--and whether the policies that will govern the behavior of those applications has been decided upon by Apple.
  • New iPhone hardware--I'd say 100% yes on announcement. 50/50 on shipping. If OS 3.0 is delayed, you can guarantee the new phone will be delayed as well.
  • New iTablet or iPad?--Maybe... I'd give this a 25% shot
Here is what I think is NOT happening at WWDC:
  • No new Pro Apps (no Final Cut Studio, Final Cut Server, Aperture, Logic, Color, etc...)
Why? There are a few reasons.

First--WWDC has never been a creative show--its a development show. Correct me if I am wrong, but no Apple Pro App has ever debuted at WWDC. This is totally the wrong crowd for this type of introduction.

Second, the most logical prior opportunity for Final Cut Studio to debut would have been NAB last month. However, that didn't happen. I think that is because the new pro software is based much more heavily on Snow Leopard than people think. And 10.6 hadn't deployed yet, so there is no use in hyping features based on other software that can't be discussed yet.

Finally, why do two major launches at the same time? Snow Leopard is big enough, why complicate the mix with doing two simultaneous introductions? Remember the Mobile Me launch? One fumbled product release was bad enough. However, doing two at the same time--one to a hypercritical professional audience and the other to dozens of millions of customers--is a potential PR blunder if one or the other should stumble.

Last--will Steve Jobs show up to do "one last thing." No clue one way or the other, but I'd like to think so.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Answers to 5/15 Twitter Contest

Our 5/15 Twitter challenge was tough. Here are the questions (and answers):

QUESTION Setup: About the new movie starring Jennifer Love Hewitt.

QUESTION 1 of 5 - Name of Jennifer Love Hewitt's current feature (Cafe)
QUESTION 2 of 5 - Name a co-star (Jamie Kennedy)
QUESTION 3 of 5 - City of shoot (Philadelphia)
QUESTION 4 of 5 - Name a producer (Chris Wyatt, Sean Covel, or J. Andrew Greenblatt)
QUESTION 5 of 5 - Name the famous movie the producers shot prior to this project

For #5 we were looking for "Napoleon Dynamite", but "Twelve" was submitted and that technically counts.

Winner is Tim Schultz! BTW...most of the answers for this could be found here [LINK]

Cafe is being shot on two RED ONE cameras from Silverado. We're also handling data wrangling, assembly editorial, and final color correction.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

How black is black on an LCD? Try the iPhone Black Level Experiment...

If you are using an LCD, how black is black? Try this experiment.

If you have an iPhone, turn it off. Go into a pitch black room (I mean PITCH black--no light leaks--totally sealed).

Then, turn on your iPhone. The Apple logo comes up--you can just cover that with your thumb.

The bright gray glow you see emitting from your iPhone? That is "black" on an LCD. But it turns out its not really that black is it?

In fact, its such a bright gray, a fully "black" iPhone display can illuminate a dark room.

This is the problem with using generic LCD's for color correction. Their black level isn't black enough, so your colors get washed out and muddied.

Try it sometime...

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

StudioBuilder 04.30.2009

Hope you had a good NAB week. We've got a few things cooking for this week--every one of which will save you time and money in production and post.


The AJA Ki Pro is a tapeless video recording device that records high-quality Apple ProRes 422 QuickTime files onto computer-friendly media. Because it features SD/HD-SDI, HDMI, and analog inputs, you can interface with virtually any type of camera you might own or rent.

AJA's new Ki Pro was a hit at NAB. If you haven't seen the Ki Pro in action yet, take a look at this video:

This new device is definitely going to streamline the time from production-to-post. I think of some new application for the device on a daily basis.

The Ki Pro is $3995 and AJA is already accepting reseller orders for this unit to ship this summer. Like other vendors, we're accepting pre-orders, too. However, we're making a Silverado order a little more worth your while.

With every Ki Pro pre-order between now and 5/15/09, Silverado will add a 250 Gb Ki Module at no charge--a $265 value.

You can place your AJA Ki Pro pre-orders here:


You know you have an awesome product when Jarred Land walks up to it and says "This thing is badass..."

We showed the Gearnex Geared Head at NAB to rave reviews at FCPUG and REDUser. The units also got plenty of play at the AJA and Panasonic booths.

While the NAB special of $3995 is now over, we have a post-NAB window where the price is $4995. That is a $1000 savings over the $5995 retail price.

Use the code GEARNEXRED (in the checkout notes section) through 5/3/09 for a free swivel/tilt arm.


We showed the new Cache-A LTO-4 product at REDUser 2009 last week in Las Vegas to a lot of very interested data managers.

One of the neatest things about this product is backwards compatibility with current LTO-3A archives. If you have a library of LTO-3A material, then the new Cache-A LTO-4 is the perfect way to move up to 800 GB tape, while retaining compatibility with your existing archives.

Units ship in mid-May. Pre-order your Prime-Cache today and we'll throw in 4.0 Tb in free LTO-4 tapes and a Pelican travel case at no charge.


We'll be building up our Twitter followers over the next few months with some fun contests. When we get to 500 followers, we're going to give away a free Blackmagic UltraScope.

But! In the meantime, we'll be doing fun giveaways at random. We got a copy of Shake v4.0 that we're itching to give away. So, follow our tweets and you might just get lucky:

Silverado Twitter [Link]


We think its more important than ever to stay involved in production and post. There are a lot of vendors you can buy from, but how many of them are just order takers?

At Silverado, we support projects as small as music videos all the way up to feature films. We recently completed editorial and color correction on a RED video that involved a Gulfstream jet, two Lamborghinis--all for a budget that would shock the senses.

We're scheduled as the RED rental house for a feature project in Philadelphia along with assembly editorial and color correction, and in June we have a feature starting work right here in Folsom which we are going to support with cameras and editorial.

What does this mean for you? If we sell it at Silverado, its generally because we've tested it in the field and feel confident about the products capabilities. If you ever wander through our webstore and wonder why we don't sell something--its because we aren't the Wal-Mart of professional video.

We don't want to sell everything--just the best products that work. We think that the best place to determine that is in actual use in the field and the edit suite doing real work.

If you ever want to stop by and see the suite and our reel, please let me know at and we be thrilled to accommodate a private showing.


More updates on NAB releases--too much stuff there to put into one update.

Also--WWDC is around the corner so we should start to hear rumblings about Final Cut Studio 3 updates.