Autodesk Flame gets extended capabilities with third major update

Written by Simon Wyndham

John Ashby & Aura FXAutodesk continues its regular update cycle for the Flame series of software

If you are one of the top tier film finishers or colourists, Autodesk has announced some interesting, and some would say essential, new updates to it's Flame suite of software.

The Flame 2018 suite of comprehensive finishing software from Autodesk received it's third update today with a number of new capabilities for each of the contained apps. The suite, which consists of Flame, the visual and effects compositing software, Flame Assist, Flare, for assisting with collaborative workflows, and Lustre, the grading software, is one of the powerhouses of the industry.

At first glance the list of additions may seem small. However the devil is in the detail, and new additions such as the vector based tracking system promise to be both transformative and time saving. Whilst the addition of a VR viewing mode allows the software to keep up with advances in this upcoming and fast developing field of production.

Many of the additions and changes have come about as a result of user feedback. Given the costs of running such software, even on the subscription basis, it is always good to see a company taking into account the opinions of its users, no matter how cliched a phrase that might seem to be.

HDR waveform monitoring also now features, which is sure to be a relief for users who will likely see this as an absolutely essential addition.

The Flame suite of software can be purchased on a subscription basis for £408 per month, £3258 per year, or £9774 for three years. Most definitely not for amateurs or those faint of heart! However such costs for those who are well established or in studios can be recouped many times over the course of a year.

More information about Flame can be found on the Autodesk website

Press release follows on the next page.


Autodesk Flame press release

SAN FRANCISCO (October 24, 2017) – Today Autodesk released update 3 for its Flame 2018 family of 3D visual effects (VFX) and finishing software, which includes Flame, Flare, Flame Assist and Lustre. Flame 2018.3 empowers creative professionals to explore new, more efficient ways of working in post, with feature enhancements that offer greater pipeline flexibility, speed and support for emerging formats and technology.

Flame 2018.3 release highlights include:
* Action Selective: Apply FX color to an image surface or the whole action scene via the camera
* Motion Warp Tracking: Organically distort objects that are changing shape, angle and form with new 32-bit motion vector-based tracking technology
* 360° VR Viewing Mode: View LatLong images in a 360° VR viewing mode in the Flame player or any viewport during compositing and manipulate the field of view
* HDR Waveform Monitoring: Set viewport to show luminance waveform; red, green, blue (RGB) parade; color vectorscope or 3D cube; and monitor a range of HDR and wide color gamut (WCG) color spaces including Rec2100 PQ, Rec2020 and DCI P3
* Shotgun Software Loader: Load assets for a shot and build custom batches via Flame’s Python API, and browse a Shotgun project for a filtered view of individual shots
* User-Requested Improvements for Action, Batch, Timeline and Media Hub

Beta customers given advance access to Flame 2018.3 share their experiences with the latest release in production:

“Flame continues to be the top editorial and VFX solution out there, and 2018.3 is one of the best releases yet. Vector-based tracking will be transformative and has the potential to save hours, even days of work,” says Out of House VFX Artist David Stern. “The new release also includes more advanced selective tools that increase options from lightbox effects and keys through lightbox; it’s amazing.”

“The new standalone Python console in Flame 2018.3 is a great; together with pybox and Python hooks, it gives us everything we could possibly ask for in a piece of software while allowing us to get better organized and keep our workflow moving,” says Treehouse Edit Finishing Artist John Fegan. “We’re also excited about the enhanced FBX export with physically based renderer (PBR) for Maya, and motion analysis updates, which are huge. Using motion vector maps, we can now achieve things we couldn't with a planar tracker or 3D track.”

“One of the great things about Flame is that Autodesk is continuously delivering features through extension releases like 2018.3 that introduce new problem-solving tools and ways of working, like the Python API integration, which is a huge step forward for Flame,” says Freelance Compositing Artist Marcel Lemme. “It brings another toolbox inside to an already great toolbox that I can use to build new solutions and automate processes, rather than do everything by hand, saving days of prep.”

Pricing and Availability

Flame Family 2018.3 is available today at no additional cost to customers with a current Flame Family 2018 subscription. For details and pricing, visit the Autodesk website.

Tags: Post & VFX


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