What’s coming in the 2014.1 release of SpeedGrade CC

We’re really proud of the development of SpeedGrade since the launch of Creative Cloud. A lot of engineering muscle went into creating the industry’s first integrated editing and color-grading pipeline with Direct Link, which allows users to move Premiere Pro projects in and out of SpeedGrade without the hassles of transcoding or XML translations. This kind of seamless integration is revolutionizing how color work is done and brings professional color grading into easy reach of everyone who edits video.

Now that the hard work is done, we’ve turned our attention back to the creative tools, which are the heart and soul of SpeedGrade. This includes, new Curve adjustments, awesome new Grading Layer Grouping, hover previews for Looks, and a whole bunch of enhancements. For those of you with Blackmagic video I/O cards, such as the Decklink line, we’re delighted to announce that the wait is over. SpeedGrade now offers enhanced Mercury Transmit with support for 4K output and, let me repeat it, Blackmagic cards.

Altogether the new features and enhancements add up to really smooth workflows, whether you are  a seasoned pro or just starting out with color grading. Let’s dive in and learn more about the 2014.1 release – coming soon to Creative Cloud on your desktop.

 

Refreshed UI

Like all of the Creative Cloud video applications, the new release of SpeedGrade offers a refined new user interface with support for HiDPI displays, including Windows 8.1 systems.

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The color scheme is more subtle and UI elements have been simplified. For example the Effects menu has been organized to make it easier to find what you are looking for. Click the “+” icon at the bottom of the Grading Layer panel to see it.

Curve adjustments

The first thing you see in the new Effects pop-up menu is “Curves.” Click it to reveal two new color tool options: RGB Curves and Hue & Saturation Curves. Click either one to add a new grading layer – the Curve controls open in the grading panel. In both cases you can drag the curve line, adding (or removing) control points until you get the result you want in your image.

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With RGB Curves, the leftmost curve controls the Luma, which is like a ganged adjustment of all three (R, G, and B) channels.

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The Hue and Saturation curves allow you to boost or mute any part of the color spectrum. Add control points and drag the line to apply your adjustments.

You can use Curve adjustments on their own, or combine them with any other grading layers, Looks, or LUTs. This brings us to the next awesome feature …

Grading Layer Grouping

From the very earliest days, SpeedGrade has used layers (rather than nodes) for adding and combining grading adjustments. With the 2014.1 release we’re taking layer-based grading to the next, um, “level.”

SpeedGradeCC_GradingLayerGrouping_480px

With Layer Grouping, you can now collect parts of your grade (or “Look,” as we call it) and collect them together. Not only does this allow you to organize complex Looks better, it also means you can adjust the opacity of a group of grades at once. This makes it easy to combine multiple Looks and effects and create a kind of “Look remix” out of them.

You can now multi-select individual grading layers, for example to save as a new Look, or to copy, just those parts of the grade. And then there’s drag and drop with Look presets – which brings us to the next feature …

Hover preview Looks

Now when you hover over a Look thumbnail, you see how that Look will impact your image, right in the Monitor. This makes it incredibly easy to test out Looks. To apply the Look, all you have to do is click on it (no more forgetting to press Enter and wondering later what happened to your Look …). Alternatively, you can drag the Look thumbnail into the grading layer stack, where it will appear as a new Group, and is automatically applied to the image.

Words don’t do this justice: you have to try it out yourself to see how smooth this really is. We think you will love the new Look workflow.

Better Direct Link

We have added audio support for Premiere Pro projects inside SpeedGrade, so now you have sound with your color. This is great since soundtracks or dialog often provide cues for transitions in lighting.

Performance with masks is now also improved, making it easier to work with masks in general, and multiple masks in particular. Related to this, SpeedGrade’s tracking, which is actually a pretty slick piece of engineering under the hood, is now significantly faster.

We also improved Autosave, both in Direct Link and in native SpeedGrade mode, so you can work with confidence.

As noted above, we have enhanced Mercury Transmit to support output to 4K monitors and adding support for Blackmagic cards.

New SpeedLooks

Last but not least, SpeedGrade sports four new SpeedLooks, giving you even more options for sophisticated color grading presets that perform really well across different types of footage and lighting conditions. Did I mention that you can group this with grading layers to instantly create new custom Looks?

Summing up

SpeedGrade is about three things: precision color science, efficient and flexible workflows, and the freedom to play with light and color. We’re excited about this release and we can’t what to see where you take it in your own work.

SpeedGradeCC2014.1_Curve-adjustments_640px

 

Availability

The new updates to the Creative Cloud video apps and Adobe Anywhere for video are expected to ship in the coming weeks.

Adobe will host MAX, The Creativity Conference,  Oct. 4-8 in Los Angeles, to share even more amazing innovations coming to Creative Cloud across desktop, mobile, services and community. To be among the first to know when these and other Creative Cloud updates are available, follow us on Twitter @creativecloud or join us on Facebook.

Visit the Creative Cloud video page for links and news from Adobe at IBC 2014 from September 12 – 17

If you can’t make it to IBC, please join us for a special Ask a Video Pro session on Friday, September 12 at 10 am PT (7 pm CEST). Live from Amsterdam, Jason Levine will demo the new features coming to the CC video apps, including SpeedGrade

 

2014 release of Adobe SpeedGrade CC now available

2014 release of Adobe SpeedGrade CC now available

At last we’re delighted to announce that the 2014 release of SpeedGrade CC is now available. The new version offers a more flexible Direct Link workflow with Premiere Pro, Master Clip effect, broadcast standard scopes, including a brand new YUV Vectorscope (much requested), an improved Look Manager, and more.

You can read more about the new features in our earlier blog post from NAB 2014. This SpeedGrade CC release is part of a much larger Adobe Creative Cloud release, including new 2014 versions of all of the desktop apps, new mobile apps, expanded integration, and more. Read more about the Creative Cloud release here.

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Creative Cloud members can install the new 2014 release of SpeedGrade through Creative Cloud for desktop. You can also log in to your Creative Cloud account and download SpeedGrade CC from there.

Not yet a Creative Cloud member? You can still test drive the 2014 release of SpeedGrade CC with a free Creative Cloud membership. For information about Creative Cloud memberships, visit this page.

SpeedGrade CC Release Notes (2014.0)

Continue reading…

Behind the scenes with colorist Thomas Bergman

Recently Adobe TV posted a beautiful video created by Thomas Bergman of Silbersalz Film, a production company located in Stuttgart, Germany. The film is one of my all-time favorites: their production quality is stunning. Their work illustrates the impact of  “creative looks” on moving images, and shows the range of a professional color grading application for shaping narrative visually.

Needless to say, I am proud that the company is an all-Creative Cloud, all-SpeedGrade post house.

This interview was recorded on set at the Silbersalz facility during production on their SpeedGrade film.

Continue reading…

Interview with cinematographer and colorist Will Read

I spoke last November with Will Read, a brilliant filmmaker based in London and a keen Creative Cloud and SpeedGrade user. Will was one of the presenters at the SpeedGrade 10th anniversary event we held in Munich in November 2013.

UK-based filmmaker Will Read

UK-based filmmaker Will Read

In the interview, Will speaks about his integrated approach to filmmaking. His workflow was born from a bad experience with his first film project. Although he had taken great care to shoot that film well, the final result was spoiled by bad telecine work and even worse color grading. He vowed then and there never again to let someone else ruin his images. Will then set out to learn color grading on his own, so that he could marry that expertise with his love of cinematography. The ultimate result was an end-to-end pipeline which gives the maximum amount of artistic control to the minimum number of people.

Continue reading…

10 Years of SpeedGrade: Interview with Patrick Palmer

2013 marked the 10th anniversary of SpeedGrade. Last November in Munich, the city where SpeedGrade was born, we held a special event to make the occasion. We were joined by lots of old friends and new users at the fabulous ARRI Cinema where we watched a some great technical and artistic presentations.

SpeedGrade on the marquee at the famous ARRI Kino in Munich, Germany.

SpeedGrade on the marquee at the famous ARRI Kino in Munich, Germany.

The whole SpeedGrade team was there – a feat, considering we’re spread all over Europe and North America.

Continue reading…

What’s coming next in SpeedGrade CC

A lot has changed since SpeedGrade became part of the Adobe CC family. Innovations like the Direct Link workflow with Premiere Pro, introduced at IBC 2013, have transformed the color workflow and changed the way editors and colorists collaborate to deliver unique looks and consistent color correction. With the next major update we’re introducing a number of great new features that refine the Direct Link experience. Additionally, we’re introducing new broadcast-standard scopes, answering to the fast-growing community of SpeedGrade users in broadcast and corporate production (see what’s new in this SpeedGrade overview video).

 Improved Direct Link experience

Full control over all tracks in your sequence
While we remain adamant about never changing an edit in while you are in SpeedGrade, a couple of items stood out in the user feedback we collected in the last six months. It was clear that turning adjustment layers on and off in SpeedGrade is crucial to a fast and efficient workflow between Premiere Pro and SpeedGrade. In the new release, you can do that by clicking the eye icon in front of each track. In fact, you can show or hid any type of track this way. That will be handy when titling is already integrated with your sequence, but you wanted to focus on the footage instead. It will also be helpful when multiple video tracks are present but you only wanted to see one at a time.

SpeedGrade CC continues to evolve with an improved Direct Link workflow for even easier integration with Premiere Pro

SpeedGrade CC continues to evolve with an improved Direct Link workflow for even easier integration with Premiere Pro

Continue reading…

SpeedGrade CC (7.2.1) Update

The SpeedGrade CC (7.2.1) update will be released today. This update focuses on bug fixes for the Direct Link workflow and extends GPU support and GPU user setting options.

SpeedGrade CC (7.2.1) will be available for download via the Creative Cloud desktop application.

As a rule, updates appear in the Creative Cloud desktop application within 24 hours of being made available. If you are checking for updates in the Creative Cloud desktop application, and they don’t appear, restarting the application can force it to check for recent updates.

Continue reading…

Setting up Tangent Element panels in SpeedGrade CC

SpeedGrade CC added support for the popular Tangent Element grading panel series (SpeedGrade already supported the Tangent CP200 grading panel series and the all-in-one Tangent Wave panel). The SpeedGrade color tools and functions are mapped to different controls in the hardware providing a more tactile and immediate grading experience.

We’re really proud of our Tangent Element implementation. We did all the mapping ourselves so the panels can really take full advantage of everything SpeedGrade has to offer. It doesn’t take long to get used to working on a grading panel and if you need to deliver lots of work quickly, grading panels are the way to go.

The Tangent Element control panel series

The Tangent Element control panel series

This post explains how to set up Tangent Element panels to work with SpeedGrade CC. Continue reading…

How to set up Mercury Transmit in SpeedGrade CC

Mercury Transmit allows you to use an external broadcast monitor with SpeedGrade. This gives you reference quality image display so you can accurately view. Currently you can use Mercury Transmit in SpeedGrade with third-party video IO cards from AJA, Matrox, and Bluefish. In this post, we’ll show you how to set up Mercury Transmit using an AJA Kona 3G as an example. 

1. Install drivers
To start the setup, download and install the AJA Kona 3G driver and the Adobe plugin installer from AJA support website.

Note: Matrox offers the driver and the Adobe plugin in a single installer. You can also download the Bluefish444 driver and installer for Windows.

If you already have an older AJA/Adobe plugin installed we recommend you uninstall it and replace it with the latest version. Please do that in this order: Continue reading…

SpeedGrade CC (7.2) Update

The SpeedGrade CC (7.2) December 2013 update will be released today. This update focuses on performance enhancements and bug fixes for the Direct Link workflow. This SpeedGrade update is just one of the pro video updates coming today, including releases of Adobe Media Encoder CC, After Effects CC, Prelude CC, and Adobe Premiere Pro CC. Please make sure you install Adobe Premiere Pro CC (7.2) before using Direct Link with SpeedGrade CC (7.2).

SpeedGrade CC (7.2) will be available for download via the Creative Cloud desktop application. Continue reading…

SpeedGrade 10th Anniversary Event – November 21 in Munich

Here’s an interesting fact for you: SpeedGrade was first introduced in 2003. That’s right: SpeedGrade is now ten years young this year! To mark the occasion, we are holding a special event at the ARRI theater in Munich on November 21. If you are based in, or near Munich Germany, or if you happen to be in the area next week Thursday, please join us!

Please note: most of the presentations will be in German. However, if any English-only speakers make the trek to Munich, you can sit next to me and I will do my best to give you a running translation of the presentations. In any case, we will be posting interviews with presenters and other stories about the history of SpeedGrade soon after this event.

Here is the program:

10 Jahre SpeedGrade
Modern Filmmaking and Adobe Creative Cloud

November 21, 2013 – 12:00 – 4:30 pm
ARRI Kino Türkenstraße 91, 80799 München Continue reading…

Using Direct Link with Color Presets

This week I wanted to share a video created by reTooled, showing how to work with look presets in both Premiere Pro and SpeedGrade using the new Direct Link integration.

I spoke with Josh Weiss about reTooled and the color presets they have created for Adobe Premiere Pro and SpeedGrade. Continue reading…

Getting to know Direct Link

SpeedGrade CC 7.1 introduced Direct Link, a new type of integration which connects the editing and color grading workflows. We wanted to explain what Direct Link is, how it works, and how to get the most out of this cool new feature.

Direct Link vs. Dynamic Link
With Direct Link, the whole Premiere Pro project (.pproj) can be opened in SpeedGrade. No file conversions or XML-based translations are involved; you get the complete native Premiere Pro timeline, except that it’s in SpeedGrade.

Dynamic Link works between two applications running in parallel on the same machine (and sharing the same memory). Dynamic Link is great for doing work on specific clips. You get immediate feedback and can make changes on the fly moving back and forth between After Effects and Premiere Pro while you perfect a composition within your editing project.

Color grading is rarely done this way. Although you may do several color grading passes over the course of your postproduction workflow, color work is generally done on a whole project, for example to match shots to each other or apply creative looks across scenes or an entire project. Continue reading…

SpeedGrade CC (7.1) Update

Today, the Adobe SpeedGrade CC (7.1) update was released. This new version includes Direct Link integration with Adobe Premiere Pro CC (7.1).

If you are checking for updates in the Creative Cloud desktop application, and the updates don’t appear, restarting the application can force it to check for recent updates. In general, updates will appear in the Creative Cloud desktop application within 24 hours of being made available.

Ideally, you should install the updates automatically as described above, but you can also directly download the update packages from the download page for Windows or Mac OS.

If you have difficulty with this update, please bring questions and issues to the SpeedGrade forum. Don’t ask questions in the comments on this blog post, which fewer people will see.

NEW

  • Direct Link integration with Adobe Premiere Pro for smooth round tripping between editing and grading
  • New Adobe Premiere Pro timeline for projects opened via Direct Link
  • Support for multiple masks within a single .look (grading layer stack) for faster workflows and easier copying of complex looks.
  • Linked mask layers within grading layer stack for greater control and precision
  • Support for all file formats supported in Premiere Pro via Direct Link workflow (see Known Issues below for formats currently not supported)
  • New welcome screen provides option to open an existing Premiere Pro project or start a native SpeedGrade project
  • Selected SpeedLooks now included with SpeedGrade. These include camera patches for matching various high end cameras create a common starting point for grading and SpeedLooks for adding a cinematic look. Continue reading…

NEW SpeedLooks and camera patches in SpeedGrade CC

SpeedLooks and the SpeedLooks camera patches are included with the new version of SpeedGrade CC, which will be available very soon. I chatted with Jeff August, one of the colorist partners in LookLabs, the company that created SpeedLooks. LookLabs has also created an awesome behind-the-scenes video, showing how they created the camera patches. In the video, you also see our good friend Jerome Sabourin, a DP and colorist who is also one of the founders of LookLabs.

What do SpeedLooks add to the colorist toolset?
SpeedLooks provide an great entry point for any colorist to start their grading session. All SpeedLooks have a defined palette that emulates the emulsion of 35mm film and they deliver beautiful results. Continue reading…

Coming Soon to SpeedGrade CC – Direct Link and more

Just last April at NAB we introduced SpeedGrade CC, including Shot Matcher, a revised UI, a new Snapshot browser and more. Many of you were excited about the new Lumetri integration in Adobe Premiere Pro CC, which allows you to apply SpeedGrade looks, including masks as effects layers. This innovation made it possible to view your content with the color grading applied in Premiere Pro and “edit to the esthetic.” It also hinted at a deeper integration between the two applications.

Direct Link
Today we are happy to announce that deeper integration will arrive very soon in the October 2013 release of SpeedGrade CC. It’s called Direct Link and allows you to open complete Premiere Pro projects inside SpeedGrade, so you see all your clips, cuts, transitions, and track color-coding in SpeedGrade CC. After applying color corrections in SpeedGrade, save the project and open it again in Premiere Pro in one smooth action – voila! Your color adjustments are all applied. Rather than Dynamic Linking, Direct Link allows you to move the whole project back and forth, as often as you need to. What a quick demo of Direct Link in action.

SpeedGrade CC now offers Direct Link integration with Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Since we first introduced Adobe SpeedGrade, the most requested feature has been a round-trip workflow with Premiere Pro. With Direct Link, you see the whole Premiere Pro CC timeline inside SpeedGrade CC.

Continue reading…