Monday, April 16, 2012

AJA Announces Ki Pro Quad

AJA Ki Pro Quad and Canon Cinema EOS C500
AJA announced today Ki Pro Quad that accepts RAW 4K over SDI, simultaneously (or subsequently) outputting that data via Thunderbolt, and recording compressed signal to SSDs.  "A scaled or cropped output is also simultaneously available for 2K or HD monitoring via dedicated SDI and HDMI connections", says AJA.

The product will be available "later in 2012" for an MSRP of $3,995 US.

Some details are rather sketchy, probably on purpose:

  • What are the compression options?  If the Ki Pro Quad is anything like Ki Pro, it will be ProRes and DNxHD.  Yes, the same ProRes that is on its deathbed following a spectacular demise of Final Cut Pro 7 last year and mass exodus of editors to Avid, Adobe and even Sony.  DNxHD could not have been timelier.  No CinemaDNG?
  • Thunderbolt (TB) support is coming to Windows this month, although not on the just-released HP's flagship workstations Z820 and Z1.  For now, TB is confined to Macs (iMac, Mac Mini) and Macbooks - which is fine for KPQ, a portable device by design.  Still, with no TB yet on Mac Pros, does KPQ's inclusion of it means there will be a new Mac Pro this year with TB built-in?
  • Uncompressed 4K recording?  Thunderbolt can be used to connect to a storage array.  Will KPQ be able to pipe raw uncompressed 4K video straight to a Thunderbolt (TB) array bypassing a computer?  Probably not, although you can connect a KPQ and a TB storage array to the same TB port on an MacBook simultaneously, which may make this uncompressed 4K recording possible.
(I hope you forgive my calling an already laconic "Ki Pro Quad", a "KPQ".  It just sounds good.)

Enjoy the video: spectacular cinematography, fantastic low lighting shallow DOF, giant close ups of Japanese designers and execs.  I wonder what camera it was shot on? Wow, really?

AJA Ki Pro Quad: Efficient 4K workflows. from AJA Marketing on Vimeo.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Premiere Pro CS6: what’s new and changed

See Todd Kopriva's blog for an extensive list of "what's new and changed".  Here are just a few points:
  • a trimmed, lithe user interface; less waste, more customization including customizable buttons
  • OpenCL support (one some systems) for GPU acceleration
  • expanded multi-camera editing
  • native support for new formats (such as ARRI Alexa)
  • basic color grading built-in; integration with SpeedGrade
  • improved dynamic-linking
  • full-screen playback on primary monitor - yay!
  • uninterrupted playback (while you fiddle with timeline, settings, etc.) - yay!
  • new way for hardware manufacturers (AJA, Blackmagic Design, Matrox, etc.) to write drivers and interface with Premiere Pro; drivers for popular hardware are supposed to be ready by NAB (April 15)
There will be more; stay tuned.

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