Hot on the heels of releasing Colorista II, post-production plugin repository Red Giant Software has announced Magic Bullet Suite 10, which updates all previous Magic Bullet plugins to 64-bit and Adobe CS5 compatibility, now includes Colorista II, and throws in Grinder, PhotoLooks, and Denoiser. Grinder is their recent DSLR-specific transcoding application, PhotoLooks is their still version of Looks, and Denoiser is a brand new product that looks to be a valuable addition to the indie filmmaker's toolkit.
I've only been using Colorista II for two days now, having just shot a late-night, not-exactly-legal trailer for my project 3rd Rail in preparation for Independent Film Week. Funny story: if you don't want to call attention to your permit-less guerilla shoot, in a post 9/11 world it's probably not a great idea to have someone play dead on an in-service subway train -- covered in fake blood. Yes, a bystander thought he'd really been shot, and yes, they went and got the transit police. Miraculously, by covering up our equipment and the fake wound, and by looking the other way and whistling nonchalantly, we escaped undetected. That is, until I blogged about it here!
Anyway, so far I've been very impressed by Colorista II, though I wish they would work out the mouse interaction bug in Premiere Pro (which is apparently Adobe's fault). Still, it's a terrific plugin that offers unprecedented color correction tools in its price range, and with the aid of Stu's great tutorials, it's very easy to learn.
I haven't found a need for Grinder yet as I've been beta testing some incarnations of 5DtoRGB. I also haven't used PhotoLooks, but I can well imagine it's a handy tool that does for stills what regular old Looks does for videos. However, the intriguing brand-new product in Suite 10 is Denoiser:
Magic Bullet Denoiser is a brand new Red Giant product for removing noise from film and video. It is a new addition to Magic Bullet Suite 10 or can be purchased as a stand alone product. Denoiser goes far beyond the run of the mill noise removal methods that tend to blur fine detail. Denoiser's accurate motion estimation algorithms guarantee great-looking video. Denoiser's default settings work well for most footage right out of the box.
For noise reduction, I'm personally a fan of Neat Video, and in fact have just written a bonus chapter for an updated, expanded version of the DSLR Guide that I'll be releasing here tomorrow (stay tuned!). However, I have a few issues with Neat Video -- namely, that it doesn't utilize GPU acceleration and as a result it's pretty slow, and also that each host software requires a separate purchase (if you want to use it in Final Cut and After Effects, you have to buy it twice). Magic Bullet Denoiser looks to be an interesting alternative, and is one I'll be testing over the next week of editing the 3rd Rail teaser.
Red Giant has a very liberal license policy, and as someone who just purchased Magic Bullet Suite 2009.2 (which includes Colorista II), I was worried that I was going to have to upgrade again. However, according to their FAQ:
I just bought Magic Bullet Suite 2009.2, do I qualify for a free upgrade?
Yes! In fact, any customer who purchased Magic Bullet Suite 2009.1 or 2009.2 qualifies for a free upgrade to Magic Bullet Suite 10.
Right now it appears that they've only activated the $99 upgrade from 2009.x, but I assume the free upgrade is on its way. Either way, Red Giant's full court press on the post-production plugin market continues, as they're offering very useful tools at very aggressive prices. Anyone else finding Red Giant's plugins especially handy lately?
Link: Magic Bullet Suite 10