SGO will showcase its high-end flagship DI and stereoscopic 3D post production system, Mistika and live on-set application, Mistika Live at NAB this year. Located at SGO's booth SL12116 in the South Hall from 11th - 14th April, the company will unveil Mistika's version 6 , revealing a set of brilliant 2D and stereo 3D features. NAB is one of the most important trade shows globally, earning the respect of more than 80,000 digital media professionals annually.
Already credited with the most advanced stereo 3D toolset on the market, and acclaimed for its remarkable speed, Mistika provides ground-breaking levels of creative control for stereoscopic material. It has become the most sought-after stereo 3D system, with highly developed functionality in both 2D and stereo 3D, offering advanced editing, compositing, colour correcting and grading performance. The system's open architecture and open storage approach enables third-party systems to have direct access to files, thus providing flexible workflows. Internally, Mistika also uses open formats at the highest bit-depth quality, with true 16 bit floating point per channel processes, HDR support, 8K resolution support, with optical quality-based processing. By utilising standard SAN technology, with clever application development, Mistika makes the most of inherent SAN capabilities as well.
As stereoscopic 3D production gains momentum, Mistika steps up the pace with new version 6 now able to play an astounding 48 frames per second and includes new data developments for both the left and right eye in stereo 3D. The new upgrade will also make it possible to re-conform in the timeline, while still retaining previous effects, with the option to move them to new positions and durations. New exciting stereo 3D tools include a highly advanced “Matching Colour” feature, which provides an overall accurate pixel-by-pixel colour adjustment between both eyes. Its name suggests it is a colour correction tool, however, it effortlessly corrects polarisation and illumination, with the mere touch of a button. Another stereo 3D highlight is the “Depth Map” tool which solves practical issues, such as colour differences that occur between both eyes, which are derived from mirror rigs or wrong depth when the frame exceeds the parallax (positive or negative), by adjusting this depth to tolerable levels.
Other key features include an increased optimisation for the entire production workflow process, with the main emphasis on significant speed enhancement for native and real-time Raw file data-handling for cameras such as the RED EPIC, ARRI ALEXA, Phantom and Weisscam. Although Mistika has provided real-time workflows directly from RED Raw files for a couple of years now, the addition of support for the RED Rocket hardware transcoding card will increase speed for 4K workflows. Ted Schilowitz of RED Digital Cinema stated at IBC last year: “Mistika is a sophisticated DI and Finishing tool that is well suited for working with REDCODE RAW natively. In our testing and review, it shows impressive capabilities, especially in the 3D realm, that make working with RED's high resolution Raw footage in 3D highly streamlined and logical.” Ted continued: “Now that Mistika is integrating the RED Rocket card into their system, it will become even more powerful, taking full advantage of RED footage at the highest visual quality levels for both 2D and 3D work, supporting both the RED ONE 4K files, and the upcoming EPIC 5K files in a real-time, high performance environment.”
Mistika also supports ARRI RAW files created with ARRI’s D-21 and new ARRI ALEXA Camera with Raw capability enabled. The system can already work with the ARRI ALEXA’s Pro Res image format output, and with added Raw support, continues to make Mistika the working environment of choice for the online post production of quality images.
Mind-blowing increase in speed in Mistika version 6 will result in tremendous time-saving. Its extraordinary speed, combined with its high quality, is critical to the completion of a successful project. It is also now empowered to support up to 5K real-time colour grading. Not only is Mistika’s software power so impressive, but also in addition, its advanced DI, is directly compatible with more than 200 native image formats. This enables post production work to start immediately without any conversion delays, space duplication issues or processing time. These exciting new features are complemented with a remarkable matchless speed due to to Mistika's GPU rendering in connection with Nvidia, which is much faster than CPU solutions. Owing to Mistika's new “Render Farm Manager”, which includes multiple render nodes, supported by the GPU in Mistika's SAN architecture, the speed is unbelievably fast, than ever before. With this GPU render optimisation, new effects have been created which include the Optical Motion Blur, 3DLUTS/1DLUTS and Debayer. They will enable the creation of correct RGB images, the integration of live action and CGI; as well as the application of 3D LUTS or 1D LUTS, in real-time on the clip adjustment parameters, without the need for manual calculations.
Another main feature that streamlines the post production process, including quality control, offline work with MXF DnxHD, and time code support, is that raw camera codecs will no longer present an issue, as Mistika is now able to read most of them. This gives the user the ability to create dailies and to set shooting adjustments beforehand. Mistika can now be used before, as well as after the offline session, to pre-process stereoscopic or Raw camera rushes for the offline. This simplifies the importing process for the offline considerably, and also allows work to continue at full resolution, or in stereo 3D, during the editing phase, as Mistika can now incorporate all changes made to the rushes, as part of the auto-conform process.
A timeline can also now be exported directly to a digital cinema compliant DCP file too. This will save post production facilities many hours of transcoding time, as this complicated process can now be achieved entirely within Mistika. The final stages of the workflow have also been simplified, owing to to the new DCP module. Mistika creates DCPs for dailies, post production and delivery tests which can be used for cinema projection in theatres equipped with DCI projectors.
The latest innovations will also apply to SGO's Mistika Live which allows SGO's powerful stereoscopic and colour correction tools to be taken "on-set", to either provide pre-visualisation and preliminary post production settings, or to be used in a live setting. It is the ultimate work station in a stereoscopic 3D shoot environment and an essential on-set tool that enables shooting adjustments in real-time as well as the creation of dailies for offline systems in formats such as MXF, DnxHD and many others.
Recent projects using Mistika include mammoth landmark production Flying Monsters in 3D with David Attenborough at On Sight, produced by Atlantic Productions for Sky's recently launched 3D TV and for 3D IMAX delivery; award-winning feature film titled Balada Triste de Trompeta, which translates as The Last Circus, was awarded the coveted Goya Award for the Best Visual Effects; PICTORION das Werk's stereo 3D feature film post production on PINA, directed by Germany's famous director Wim Wenders; The Framestore's Philips and LG campaign projects; amongst many other extremely high profile projects which are being completed at many Mistika client sites across the globe which will be announced in due course.