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ARRI Media needs Tcube for 3D LUTs

12 March 2008

After extensive tests, ARRI Media has selected Tcube FIG units for colour correction with its D-20 cameras. These were purchased through Gee Broadcast Systems, the UK Distributor for the French manufacturer.

The ARRIFLEX D-20 combines the handling and functionality of ARRI film cameras with the immediacy of digital acquisition to provide a modern film-style digital camera. The single 6Mpixel CMOS sensor at the heart of the camera is the same size as a Super 35mm film aperture, providing the same depth of field and angle of view as 35mm while offering full HD resolution. In order to view the recorded material in a critical manner, the digital video output needs to be processed so that the monitors used to view the images can reproduce the required look as closely as possible. In order to achieve this in realtime, 3D LUT processing is required.

A 3D LUT provides a colour space transformation and uses a 17 x 17 x 17 matrix with 12-bit accuracy. Different LUTs can be designed and applied depending on the source characteristics and monitoring required. This can deal, for example, with linear or logarithmic outputs from the ARRIFLEX D-20. 3D LUT files are loadable locally from compact flash or can be downloaded remotely over Ethernet.

The 3D LUT processing in the Tcube FIG can also accept 3D LUT files in Kodak, Luther (GVG) and other formats. The Tcube FIG unit supports SD and HD operation including dual link 4:4:4. One FIG occupies a half-width 19″ rackmount space and can provide other functions in addition to 3D LUT processing in realtime. These include HD downconverter, bug inserter, gamut legalisation, colour correction, video and audio delays, frame synchroniser and audio re-sampling.

Bill Lovell from ARRI Media said: “We chose the Tcube FIG because the programmable nature of the FIG allowed it to be optimised to exactly meet our needs. We also know that future upgrades can easily be applied if our needs change. The FIG offers excellent performance at a reasonable cost and has already proven itself on productions shooting with the D-20 at Pinewood Studios and on location, and in post production with Ascent Media.”

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