The all-new FrameSync function present in the firmware update for the Vortex8 LED panel enables industry-first in-camera effects for directors, DPs and gaffers.
Developers of artisan-quality cinema lighting for more than 15 years, Creamsource announced the immediate availability of CreamOS 1.2.0, an expansive firmware update for its flagship Vortex8 650W high-power 2’x1’ LED fixture. In addition to several improvements for usability, stability, and performance including sACN: DMX control over ethernet, this firmware release introduces FrameSync, an industry-first innovation that enables new types of in-camera special effects by opening up the capability to shoot multiple, differently lit scenes at once and create virtual green screens for enhanced creative applications.
The company says that “with FrameSync, the Vortex8 can be triggered from an external source, such as a sync generator (e.g. Ambient Lockit ACN-CL), or the genlock output of a cinema camera, to ensure that it is synchronised with the camera shutter” adding that “this is especially useful when using effects such as strobe, where a lack of synchronisation between the camera and the lights can cause issues like frame tearing and flash banding.”
This new feature alleviates the problem that most digital CMOS cameras can have with any flashing or strobing light source. It can also be used for frame-accurate strobing for advanced special effects, for frame rates up to 5,000fps, according to Creamsource.
Shoot high, edit low
Using FrameSync it becomes possible to shoot multiple, differently lit scenes at once for dramatic creative effects. Users can set up a group of synchronised lights, an individual light, or a sub-group of lights, and can run a sequence of pre-programmed changes. For example, a light to the left of the talent can be set to red for every second frame, and a light to the right of the talent can be set to blue for every other frame. With CreamOS 1.2.0, there is effectively no limit to the number of fixtures that can be synchronised at the same time.
Creamsource states that “what this means in practice is that if you shoot at a higher than normal frame rate and then edit for a lower frame rate, there will be spare frames in the sequence. You could, for example, drop all the blue frames and the scene would look red. Drop the red ones and it would look blue. So for exactly the same scene, you can shoot two versions: a red one and a blue one – but at the same time. Then, you can use the two creatively – even blending multiple individual framestreams in post production. Because it’s all created in-camera, the colours are rich and fully-saturated.”
There is nothing like trying new ideas in a real-world situation to see how well it all works. FrameSync was used in the music video El Diablo by El Rafa as a first test for the all-new technology. The BTS (Behind-The-Scenes) video published by Creamsource show how well the technology works and at the same time leaves a question in the air: is multitrack lighting the future of Cinema? There is also a video where Creamsource CEO Tama Berkeljon explains the all-new Frame Sync technology for the Vortex8.
FrameSync: a lot more coming
Lighting effects and research specialists, Satellite Lab, used features of CreamOS 1.2.0 for a recent leading Hollywood franchise production. Co-founder and Director, Carlo Van de Roer adds, “Our work requires very precise timing of lights, so working with the response time of the Vortex8 firmware has been terrific.”
FrameSync on Vortex8 has the most creative latitude when paired with a high-speed camera such as the Phantom Flex 4K. With more frames, there are more options and combinations possible for creative lighting effects. Creamsource says that while their patent pending technology is already extremely useful in its current rendition, there’s a lot more coming in terms of expanded tools and functionality in the future on their FrameSync Platform.
Current customers can get the latest Vortex8 firmware immediately. Firmware and download instructions are available at https://creamsource.com/support/.
- FrameSync: Sync framework implemented for effects Dual Level, Flash Frames and Sync Flash; Sync the Vortex to the camera’s shutter for specialised lighting effects that are frame accurate up to 5,000fps. Safely use any effects mode without frame tearing.
- User Presets for Effects and Colour Mode: Store, restore and clear up to 50 user presets. Ideal for creating custom presets and shortcuts.
- DMX over Ethernet: Simplify DMX distribution with Streaming ACN (sACN) support, which allows for hundreds of DMX universes over a single ethernet cable.
- And much more…
For a complete list of updates and improvements found in CreamOS 1.2.0, visit Creamsource’s website.
Creamsource LED luminaires have been applied on major Hollywood feature films including, Lucy in the Sky, Legion Series 3, Captain Marvel, The Mandalorian, Black Panther, Dune, Dumbo, Mulan, Jungle Book, Aquaman, Mortal Engines, American Assassin, Alien Covenant, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Dr Strange and Thor: Ragnarok, and TV dramas including Stranger Things, MacGuyver, Homeland, Zapped, and Magnum PI.