OpenCL Support Accelerates Debayering of CinemaDNG Files for Playback, Editing, and Finishing

AMD demonstrated a powerful 4K CinemaDNG workflow for Blackmagic Design DaVinci Resolve 10 color-grading at IBC this month, using a Supermicro 7047GR-TRF SuperWorkstation to run four AMD FirePro W-series graphics cards. The GPU-accelerated workflow relies on Blackmagic's OpenCL support for Windows and Mac to enable real-time playback of CinemaDNG, the raw format supported by the Blackmagic Cinema Camera.

"OpenCL acceleration handles the heavy work of debayering CinemaDNG files, giving Blackmagic camera customers real-time playback, online edting, and grading and finishing capabilities," said Blackmagic CEO Grant Petty in a prepared statement. "And with OpenCL support in DaVinci Resolve 10, they can use up to four GPUs with a single Resolve, enjoying absolutely amazing real-time performance."

Nvidia had stolen some of AMD's thunder in the pro video realm when Adobe's Mercury Playback Engine began supporting GPU acceleration via Nvidia's Cuda architecture. That changed this year, when Premiere Pro CC incorporated a new version of the Mercury Engine that supported OpenCL, enabling acceleration of a broad range of AMD cards.

And the Resolve demonstration at IBC showed that OpenCL support was by no means limited to Adobe applications. Autodesk is another link in the chain, with a new Extension for 3ds Max 2014 set to enable active stereo viewing for Autodesk Subscription customers with recent FirePro graphics cards. And Maya's Bullet plug-in is being upgraded in another Extension for AMD FirePro acceleration.

AMD has the endorsement of writer-director (and tech innovator) Robert Rodriguez, whose Troublemaker Digital operation has been using AMD processors and GPUs on the sequel Machete Kills, which premiered at Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas, last week..