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Post Production

Assimilate Inc. releases Scratch 9.2

This week we’re side-stepping our usual “Learn Scratch” lessons to talk about the newest release of Assimilate Scratch, and that is Scratch v9.2 .  This update is pretty big, and introduces some new features that Scratch users will really enjoy!  It also introduces the new Assimilate Product Suite v9.2., which includes two new tools – Live Looks and Live Assist. Both of which can run stand-alone or combined with SCRATCH  Take a look below the tutorial to get an in-depth look at all the new features, as well as the in-depth feature information, and then below that, we’ve included the trailer for Live Looks and Live Assist, to give you a sneak peek of these new tools.  As always, you can get in-depth tutorials on the new tools at www.youtube.com/assimilatescratch .

Color

  • A new set of clipping- and softness controls in the LUT menu for soft-clipping your grade.
  • Most noticeable – a new look and feel of the color-ball controls. Note that on the Color menu the original color A / B color-balls have been replaced by sliders. The menu also comes with a Dim button to adjust the display saturation of the new color-ball controls.
  • The layout of the Player-Settings-Monitor menu has been updated. With the update of the VideoIO implementation (see below) you can now have multiple reference monitors. Each of those can have its own color space / eotf setting, which the software uses to convert the image into before displaying it on the particular monitor. Alternatively you can set it to <Source> which will leave the image as is. This corresponds to the Apply option in prior versions.
  • The ACES implementation is now fully processed on the GPU rather than creating in-between LUTs from the IDT / ODT transforms in CTL scripts. This improves the accuracy of the transforms. Note that with this update we also updated the Rec709 and sRGB ODTs; in prior versions we used a different (D60) white point. This can cause a slight change in how ACES media is displayed when compared to v9.1. You still have the option to use the same transforms as in v9.1 by enabling the ‘Use ACES-REC709 D60 transform‘ advanced system setting. With the new ACES implementation it is now also possible to set a display LUT after the ACES (ODT) transforms. This was not possible in prior versions as the ACES transforms were handled as the display LUT. Note that with the update of ACES implementation, the application no longer uses external CTL files and as such it does no longer come with all the IDT/ODT files. Furthermore, you no longer select an ACES version in the Project settings but rather always use the latest available version.
  • Support for Tetrahedral LUT interpolation for smoother and more gradual results. Tetrahedral is the default interpolation method in v9.2 and in general does require slightly more processing (although on most systems not noticeable). If needed however, you can revert back to linear interpolation though the Advanced Settings (search for ‘interpolation’).
  • Added new standard gamuts and eotf options: Black Magic Wide Gamut / BMDFilm gamma, Z-Cam Log, Nikon and Fuji log curves. Also, ACEScg (AP1) is now a separate color space next to ACES (linear AP0).
  • The default value for the Clip Levels setting of a shot is now set to true, which means that by default when applying a LUT on a shot any ouot of range values are clipped. Note that only the default value was changed – this does not affect existing setups. Reason for changing the default is that clipping is the more expected behavior when applying a LUT.

Formats

  • Update on ProRes RAW handling. The Mac version now uses the OSX VideoToolBox for decoding with support for Afterburner card and Metal for GPU processing. This requires OSX Catalina 10.15 or the installation of Pro Video Formats 2.1.1.
  • Update on ARRI footage handling. SCRATCH can now reads and applies the look-information that comes with an ARRI Raw and ARRI ProRes MXF media and when specified in the look, automatically updates the color space of the shot. Also, we added Kelvin and Tint white balance controls with the ARRI RAW reader, which seemed to be preferred over the RGB gain controls.
  • In this version we no longer include the Codec Support Package (CSP). By now all of the formats that were supported by CSP have been moved to specialized readers. Note that the only remaining format not yet fully supported outside CSP is Panasonic Op1b MXF: currently the standard reader does not include the audio of this format. We are working on fixing that in an update release. In the meantime, the alternative is to select the FFMpeg reader for this format.
  • Added support for XDCAM MXF files (MPEG-2 Long GOP HD)
  • We added the option to generate DNx in a QuickTime (.mov) container.
  • This version contains various fixes on the Cineform Reader.
  • AJA implementation updates. 8K capture support as well as 12-bit RGB packed format for playback and capture. Please note that default SCRATCH v9.2 does not have any SDI capture capabilities. SDI capture is available with Live Looks and Live Assist or under custom licensing.
  • Parsing more EXR metadata: SCRATCH did not parse any non-string tagged metadata.
  • Fix on the Phantom reader that had an issue with certain 8bit bayer-pattern files.

Project / Metadata / Miscellaneous

  • This version has a new Annotation (paint) tool. From the main toolbar you can enable/disable viewing of annotations while from the top menu bar you can open the paint toolbox. Annotations can be created per shot or per frame. When selecting to display note-markers on the mini timeline, these will include markers for the paint-annotations. Furthermore, from the Reports option in the Construct module, you can also select an annotation report which contains (proxy) images of all shots in the timeline that contain annotations (text / paint).
  • Added flexibility to licensing: you can now de-activate a license on one system and activate it again on another system. Note that to be able to de-activate a license you first need to mark the license through the MyAssimilate.
  • Directly output pdf formatted reports. When setting the report filename you can now choose between html and pdf as output format.
  • This version contains a new Video-IO implementation that supports multiple inputs and outputs at the same time. Note that by default SCRATCH only comes with support for multiple outputs. Live Looks and Live Assist also include support for multiple inputs. Supported Video-IO hardware continues to be AJA, BMD and Bluefish444.
  • Blackmagic Decklink SDK has been updated to v11.5, AJA SDK has been updated to v15.5
  • You can now use the mouse scroll-wheel to adjust position of the mini-timeline.
  • Load and match Live Looks grades in SCRATCH. Either from the ‘New Timeline’ panel after the File Browser or from the Match Live Looks button in the Construct you can easily match and apply grades that you created in Live Looks or Live Assist onto the selected clips in your timeline.
  • The Same as Source render now respects the slot disabled-state in a timeline.
  • A new Remote Control application with which you can control the basic player functions from an external device (phone / tablet). The Remote Control is a first application for the new http/web server interface of the software. Currently you first need to explicitly enable the embedded web server through the corresponding advanced system setting. When enabled, the Tools menu in the top menu in the Player will show a Remote Control option. This will open a panel with a QR code / ip-address, that you can scan / enter in your external device to start the actual remote control.

 


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Kevin P McAuliffe is a three time North American ProMax award winning editor and a Media Composer editor for over 15 years. He is a featured trainer at MacProVideo and is also one of the…
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