Will Incorporate High-End Color-Grading and 3D Tools in Future Versions of Creative Suite

At IBC today, Adobe announced that it was buying technology from IRIDAS, including the company’s well-regarded SpeedGrade project for processing, color-grading, and finishing, including robust stereo-3D tools. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but in a brief FAQ at its website, IRIDAS said product support, licensing, and customer data would remain with IRIDAS for now and asked that customers direct concerns and questions to IRIDAS through the usual channels. And in a blog post, Adobe’s Todd Kopriva seemed to confirm that IRIDAS personnel, as well as technology, would be moving over to Adobe. “One of the major reasons that we’re excited is that we know that the Adobe team will be enriched by the addition of the IRIDAS team,” he wrote.
Adobe placed an emphasis on high-dynamic-range (HDR) video, perhaps hinting at how the IRIDAS toolset will be positioned in future versions of Premiere Pro and After Effects. “With the addition of our color-grading technology, I believe Production Premium can lead the HDR video and stereoscopic charge as the film and professional video industry evolves,” IRIDAS CEO Lin Sebastian Kayser said in a prepared statement.

In the pro video world, the deal represents a huge step forward for Adobe, bolstering the company’s stake in the editorial market following the controversial introduction of Apple’s Final Cut Pro X. Adobe says overall demand for its video toolkit has grown 22 percent year-on-year, including 45 percent on the Mac platform, where customers have been investigating FCPX alternatives. Initial response to the deal on the Internet seemed positive, especially among those who are already using Adobe tools, although some IRIDAS users wondered whether an entity of Adobe’s size could be as responsive to customer needs as the smaller company.

Some users compared it to Apple’s purchase of the powerful Final Touch color-grading tools from Silicon Color, which became Color on that platform. The lack of a Color-like tool is one of the complaints some longtime FCP users have lobbed in Adobe’s direction, and the company is doubtless looking to fix that problem. Exactly how SpeedGrade will be integrated with the rest of Adobe’s toolkit, and how ambitious or robust that integration will be, is the question of the day.