March 12, 2014

Red Giant Unveils Universe, a Tool that Might Just Revolutionize the Plugin Industry

Red Giant UniverseHere at No Film School, we love Red Giant. Their lineup of filmmaking tools, from PluralEyes to the Color Suite to BulletProof, has made the lives of countless filmmakers so much easier and more efficient. So imagine our excitement when Red Giant started to hint at a major announcement, one that would surely see the launch of new tools that would be equally, if not more helpful than their prior products. Well No Film Schoolers, today Red Giant unveiled Universe, an innovative online post production platform/community that not only includes over 50 brand-spankin' new effects and transitions, but the resources necessary for the platform to grow infinitely. In fact, Universe might just revolutionize the way plugins are created and distributed. Read on for the full story.

So what exactly is Red Giant Universe? Well, simply put, it's a community that provides its members access to a host of different post production and motion graphics plugins for the major editing platforms. Think of it like a Creative Cloud membership, but for Red Giant plugins instead of Adobe software. The plugins that are included in Universe have all been built from the ground up specifically for this platform, and they're all super-speedy due to their inherent GPU acceleration. Because Universe is also an online community, members can actively participate in the creation of new plugins by voting for which ones get made next and beta testing new plugins before they're released to the masses. And the best part, membership in Universe is free (well, mostly).

Here's the product launch video from Red Giant:

https://vimeo.com/87001310

And here are a few brief excerpts from the press release that shed more light on this unique tool:

In addition to the expanding library of free plug-ins, Universe also offers Premium membership, which gives users access to even more tools - including new effects and transitions, as well as existing Red Giant favorites ported over to the new Universe platform (such as Knoll Light Factory EZ, Holomatrix, Retrograde, and ToonIt). Premium membership is available through monthly and yearly subscription, as well as a one-time lifetime membership fee.

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What truly makes Universe unique, however, is its community aspects. Through Universe Labs, members get to help choose what effects and transitions Red Giant builds next - while premium members are eligible for invitations to early betas of new products, allowing users to give early feedback and actively help shape Universe’s expansion over time.

So what all do you get when you sign up for Universe?

31 Free Tools

  • 22 Effects
  • 9 Transitions

19 Premium Tools

  • 12 Effects
  • 7 Transitions

Host App Compatibility:

Other Features

  • Regularly updated (using our dev tool, Supernova)
  • Porting of some existing Red Giant products to Universe (Premium)
  • Voting on new tools to decide what gets made next
  • Invitations to private betas for new tools (Premium)

Now let's talk a little bit about price. You'd probably assume that a premium account will cost you an arm and a leg, but that is far from the truth. Red Giant has a very simple pricing plan for Universe, and  it looks a little something like this:

  • Basic Membership: Free
  • Premium Monthly: $10
  • Premium Yearly: $99
  • Premium Lifetime: $399

The most unique thing about Universe is that it's infinitely and quickly updatable because of the unique way in which its plugins are created. It's a method that cuts the coding time for plugin creation down to almost nothing. You're probably asking yourself how exactly Red Giant can pull this off? Well, they have developed a unique and interactive plugin-building tool called Supernova that looks to be mind-blowingly powerful. Here's just a quick demo:

https://vimeo.com/88253005

While Supernova is only available to the Red Giant engineers at this point, the potential for independent plugin creation (should this tool become democratized) is absolutely staggering. Just imagine being in need of a specific plugin for your post workflow. If that plugin doesn't exist yet, you'd have the ability to create it yourself without needing to become a software engineer. Even if Supernova is never released to the public, the Red Giant engineers should be able to crank out professional plugins at a rate never before witnessed in this industry, and that's certainly something to look forward to.

Universe entered its public beta today, so be sure to head on over to the Red Giant website and sign up to give it a go (it is free, after all).

What do you guys think of Red Giant Universe? Will this new community revolutionize the way post production plugins are created and distributed? Will we see more of the industry trending towards these cloud-based solutions and communities? Let us know down in the comments!

Link: Universe - Red Giant

Your Comment

29 Comments

If Red Giant continues this way and makes all their plugins available for a membership. I will jump on that ship. So bad.

March 12, 2014 at 12:26PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Ben

Feels like their website is crashing from all of the people on it right now. I'm going to give it a shot though.

March 12, 2014 at 12:34PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Dan

Got it downloaded and played through all of the available effects. There are some very useful tools that they have included. I'm interested to see what else gets added to it as more people get access to it and request more features.

March 12, 2014 at 5:27PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Dan

can't manage to get it downloading.
payment structure is cool though - will keep on trying.

D

March 12, 2014 at 12:47PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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More great stuff from Red Giant. As the years go on, I more pleased with my transition to Premiere/ Adobe.

March 12, 2014 at 1:01PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Marc B

Yeah, I guess it's a popular win, because I haven't been able to download the Universe app. yet for all the traffic.

March 12, 2014 at 1:01PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Razor

Love Red Giant. They make fantastic products and have even better support. I'm all for this idea - I'll give it a shot and if it holds up to what it promises, it is easily worth $100/year or $400 for life.

March 12, 2014 at 1:02PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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This is a fantastic idea. Bill Gates said it long ago that we wouldnt own our software but it would be subscription based. He couldnt be more right. This is what I have Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, Adobe CC, and now Red Giant well Im gonna try her out first...

March 12, 2014 at 1:26PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Caleb

The $399 "Lifetime" thing is a little confusing, since it's not really a lifetime of updates. You just get three years of updates as you would for the $99/year plan, but with the benefit that you don't lose the tools when those three years are up.

Seems like a weird deal, since it would be $100 less to just do the subscription. I suppose it's there to pacify the anti-subscription folks who hate stuff like Creative Cloud.

March 12, 2014 at 1:28PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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David S - There will be a one time payment option we're calling "Lifetime" that is similar to our normal Suite purchasing model and will allow you to keep the plugins you receive without them ever being deactivated. Stay tuned for further details on updates and benefits of the Lifetime Membership.

The copy on the site has been updated because we're still working out the details on that one. Sorry for the confusion.

March 12, 2014 at 3:04PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Aharon Rabinowitz

Thanks Aharon! Your tweets + your conversations with folks like Angie Taylor on twitter have been very, very helpful for getting new info about this product.

March 12, 2014 at 3:36PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Very cute ... now get an effin' life.

March 12, 2014 at 2:27PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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DLD

Split personalities much?

March 12, 2014 at 3:20PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Anon

This site doesn't have an exclusive screen name registration, so if someone wants to use "Anon" or "DLD" or whatever, he can. In other words, the first post made under "DLD" in this thread was made by someone who frequently resorts to this type of scumbag action on a regular basis against posters that s/he, for some reasons, tends to disagree with. It doesn't really bother me that much but that person did it to other NFS guests also. So that's the story behind it.

March 12, 2014 at 10:33PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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DLD

I know. I was just kidding :)

Where is Gene when you need him?

March 13, 2014 at 3:47PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Anon

I wouldn't pay for what's available so far, but it could be interesting down the road.

March 12, 2014 at 2:50PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Pat

Waiting for the "I hate subscriptions," folks.... I want to OWN my software, blah, blah, blah...

Frequent updates are a godsend.

March 12, 2014 at 4:03PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Chriss

How about Avid?

March 12, 2014 at 6:18PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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David

Red Giant doesn't typically support Avid, do they?

March 12, 2014 at 6:23PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Yeah. How about Avid?

March 12, 2014 at 9:35PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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E Cary

That was amazing!

March 13, 2014 at 5:44AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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heylo

So Magic Bullet and Trapcode aren't included in the premium version? Or am I missing something? Personally I'm a big fan of these subscription based systems, but this is just half and half ... I had my credit card out as soon as I read the title. I just put it back though :(

March 13, 2014 at 11:06AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Gunter

No Trapcode Suite, Magic Bullet, Pluralize, etc...If they added those in, this would have been news of the year in the plug-in universe.

March 13, 2014 at 12:23PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Will it be possible to write a plug-in that ingests CinemaDNG into e.g. FCPX with more options, like which debayering algorithm is used, or what colour space it is encoded in? Or is "Universe" limited to the core "effects" stage of editing?

March 14, 2014 at 3:33AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Thyl Engelhardt

I'm not an AE user so the plug-ins aren't of interest to me. What I am interested in is whether Red Giant will have another awesome short film to show it off. Or did I miss it?

March 14, 2014 at 6:17AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Great idea, well done Red Giant.

March 14, 2014 at 7:15AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Rob

Tried downloading and installing for my Hackingtosh..but it say's I needs osx 10.8.5..I have 10.8.4 as per the No Film School Hack Pro build instructions. So my question is, does anyone know if I can safely update my osx to the newer version without screwing up my Hackintosh?

March 14, 2014 at 1:16PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Mike

Does everyone commenting above work for Red Giant?

March 14, 2014 at 2:34PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Halli

I am not a fan of the whole subscription based model. Its kind of like renting software. I wonder if Adobe will lose some users with its new CC. I was getting ready to buy Adobe Premiere 6 when I learned that they won't have an upgrade path for 7. And also learning about CC and the costs, I decided to look into Avid as my solution. I will miss Red Giant because of this and the $10 a month model wasn't bad at all.

March 19, 2014 at 12:59PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Halloween Mike