It’s been a busy April for Assimilate, which has spent the month updating its Scratch dailies and finishing system to support Apple’s recently introduced ProRes Raw formats as well as the just-released Red SDK supporting real-time 8K workflow via GPU acceleration.
Scratch build 1009, released today, includes the new Red SDK v7.1.0 with support for full GPU decode and debayer of .R3D footage on Nvidia Cuda-enabled GPUs. On the most recent Nvidia graphics cards, the new SDK is said to enable real-time 8K processing even on modestly outfitted computer workstations.
That newest release comes on the heels of a build made available during NAB that added Apple ProRes Raw support to Scratch. ProRes Raw was first announced around this time last year, which means it’s taken a while for the new format to be integrated in third-party toolsets. But Assimilate CEO Jeff Edson says it could lead the way to a dramatically streamlined workflow in both production and post.
“The ProRes codec is the most widely used compression format for acquisition, editing, and delivery, worldwide, because it simplifies the camera to delivery process,” Edson said in a prepared statement. “At the same time, numerous raw camera formats are available today, which work well for in-depth analyzing of data for their specific product line. Currently all camera manufacturers write their own SDKs for their proprietary raw formats. There is potential for ProRes Raw to become a ubiquitous camera format, which means camera manufacturers would no longer need to develop the variety of SDKs, resulting in significant cost savings, lowering the barrier to entry, and streamlining the camera workflow.”
Our take? It’s OK if you cross your fingers while you wait for multiple camera vendors to agree on a single standard recording format, but we strongly suggest you don’t hold your breath. History suggests third parties like Assimilate will be stuck supporting multiple raw formats and workflows for the foreseeable future.