Month: August 2015

KeyFlow Pro interface

KeyFlow Pro, a personal Media Asset Management system with limited workgroup capabilities

Several years ago, Apple had a professional-grade, server-based media asset management system (MAM). Unfortunately, Apple decided to kill Final Cut Server and instead incorporate some of its management functionality into Final Cut Pro X. Managing your media files from within an editor is not quite the same as managing them in a MAM, so the door was wide open to third party developers. One of them developed a nice alternative under the name KeyFlow Pro. It targets individual users as well as small workgroups.

Tiffen Dfx 4

Add visual interest to images and video with Tiffen Dfx 4 digital filters

Tiffen is renown for their physical filters and gels, but they also have a nice portfolio of digital products. I tested the complete Tiffen Dfx 4 digital filter suite for video and photo. The complete Dfx 4 package comes as a stand-alone app and plug-in for Adobe, Apple and Avid NLEs, and for Adobe’s image editing apps as well as Apple’s Aperture. It is the only plug-in package that replicates Tiffen optical filtering, Rosco and Gam gobos and gels, and now also hundreds of photographic film stocks. It is a quite complete toolkit for photographers and cinematographers alike.

Review: Luma Loop V2 glidestrap

The Luma Loop glidestrap is the last of the three glidestraps or sling model camera straps I’m reviewing. The Luma Loop is the most luxurious strap of them all. It has a leather shoulder strap and a unique attachment mechanism. The cliché says leather is highly uncomfortable and cutting in your flesh, while an attachment mechanism being unique doesn’t mean it is any good. In the case of the Luma Loop V2 strap, let me assure you that the two clichés proved to be wrong.

Corel Painter 2016: is the new and improved worth it?

I wasn’t aware it was that time of the year again: a new version of Painter. This venerable creative app is now officially called Painter 2016. If you thought after experiencing the last version it would be hard to come up with some new and exciting stuff… well, you were wrong. Painter 2016 has received some much needed interface improvements, but also new brushes and capabilities that once again will enable artists to have more fun and get closer to the analogue experience.

eve room

Elgato Eve HomeKit accessories help you make home a healthier and secure place

Elgato Eve gathers data on air quality, temperature, humidity, air pressure, energy consumption and more. I received Eve Room and Eve Weather to try it out. Unique about Eve Room is its sensor for air quality, which works very accurately, as I was to discover soon. Eve is also unique in that it manages to comply with Apple’s stringent security requirements. As far as I know, it’s the only HomeKit accessory range that pulls off this trick over Bluetooth.

Carbon Copy Cloner

Backing up your Mac isn’t something you do for pleasure. It’s a necessity and necessities are seldom fun. But when the day comes your hard disk or Mac gives up, you’ll be happy to have a backup you can start from. That is: if you can start up from your backed up volume in seconds. Chances are that, if you are using Carbon Copy Cloner, you can.

To keep out drone trolls, legal regulations are necessary

In August 2015, the pilot of an airplane in the midst of its landing procedure at Ben Gurion near Tel Aviv in Israel, suddenly saw a quadcopter flying right of the plane at a dangerously close distance of about 100m (33ft). In compliance with aviation rules, he reported the incident to airport authorities. They started an investigation. Certainly in Israel, drones could be used for anything from plane spotting to terrorism. Drones are increasingly becoming a problem and they should not be unleashed to the broader public without establishing ground rules for their usage.

Koji Advance

Koji Advance film grading vs. FilmConvert

There are two film emulator plug-ins for Final Cut Pro X, Premiere Pro and After Effects that are competing for your attention. Both are developed with care and lots of features to please users. Why then would you prefer one over the other? Is it just personal preference, or is there more to it? FilmConvert has been available for some time now. Koji Advance has the advantage of a big name behind it (Dale Grahn, a famous colour timer), some unique features and speed.

WhiBal

In-camera white balance with WhiBal

If you take photography seriously, even if you’re a camera RAW shooter out of principle, you won’t leave the house without a white balancing tool. Over the past ten years or so, I have reviewed a complete collection. I kept most of these contraptions, even the weirdest ones. Michael Tapes Design’s WhiBal white balance reference cards are amongst the most simple ones to work with. They don’t look weird either.