30 Dec

What Da Vinci was like in 1987!

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Colour corrected Da Vinci Colour corrected Da Vinci DaVinci/RedShark

(This is a second chance to see this lovely retro look at DaVinci.) I'm no fashion guru, but I do remember that in 1987 women wore shoulder pads the size of a small country and men rolled up their jacket sleeves as if it was almost an anatomical necessity. And I spent hours trying to recreate Jan Hammer's synthesised guitar sound from the Miami Vice theme on my Korg keyboard.

At the same time, DaVinci were making a film to promote their colour correction system - where "all of your work can be stored on a floppy disk".

Actually, this is not only a fascinating document of the time, but it's a pretty good foundation course in colour correction. Back then, everything to do with video was difficult. You needed massive - and clever - engineering to do any sort of video processing. So although the pervasive cheesiness of the era, perfectly captured in this film, might be an amusing distraction, you can only marvel at the quality of engineering in this museum-piece, and I have to say that even now, those control surfaces look pretty impressive, even if the user interface is showing its age a bit.

(Thanks to for bringing this to our attention)





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  • ..."Stores sessions on a 20MB hard disk!"

    Wow! That's more than my laptop!? Oh wait...

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  • 08:10: "...the preview key feature allows you to switch back and forwards between two colour settings to work a client into the desired look"


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  • Great video. Makes me want to shoot a sci-fi movie! :)

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  • Love it! Gutted I was born to late to experience 80's software like this, how I would have loved to grade on this with miami vice on in the background.

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  • Some of this 80s stuff might appear to be unsophisticated now compared to an app we can run on our kettle, but it was beautifully made, and - remember - this stuff was hard back then.

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David Shapton

David is the Editor In Chief of RedShark Publications. He's been a professional columnist and author since 1998, when he started writing for the European Music Technology magazine Sound on Sound. David has worked with professional digital audio and video for the last 25 years.

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