I think the most exciting thing about Flicker Free plugin is that people are willing to let us talk about it when they use it. Beauty Box Video gets used all the time on very high profile projects but no one wants to admit it publicly. It’s not worth some video editors job to say so-and-so pop star doesn’t have the flawless skin it looks like she has.
Flicker Free isn’t even officially released yet and we’re getting producers emailing us, letting us know it saved a shot (or shots) in their video AND they have no problem with us posting it. It’s awesome!
Such is the case with the music video from the Bloody Beetroots featuring Tommy Lee (of Motley Crue fame). One of the LED lights on the set was causing severe strobing in some shots. This isn’t regular flicker, it’s sort of rolling bands. It’s something we’ve seen only from LED lights and possibly electrical interference (the iPhone example in the FF demo reel is a good example of the problem). Flicker Free was the only thing that got rid of it. Just another big problem the plugin can solve. You can check out the final video below.
We’ve gotten a couple tech report requests about this lately, so it’s worth noting.
In earlier versions of FCP X, there’s a bug where third party effects will sometimes render a blue frame. This was solved in 10.0.9 (I think). So it’s been fixed for some time, but folks need to upgrade (which is FREE).
For plugins to run correctly you REALLY need to update FCP X. This effects all plugin developers, not just Digital Anarchy. I understand the hesitation about upgrading an app that’s working for you, but in this case you really should upgrade. It’s free and will prevent you from eventually running into the problem… probably right in the middle of a big project (when you shouldn’t upgrade) with a plugin you HAVE to use. There’s no way to get rid of the blue frame if it’s happening other than to upgrade.
Here’s a link to the Apple Knowledge base with info about it:
Let’s say you did some work for a client 3 or 4 years ago. A promotional video featuring upper management or something. They come back now and want you to redo the video with current management but everything else can stay the same. Just re-shoot a few people and drop them into the old video. Of course, because this is clearly so easy and they paid you once before, they want you to do it for free. What would you tell them?
We have people do this to us all the time. People who buy a new Mac, upgrade to FCP X, and get all pissy when we tell them they’ll have to buy an upgrade from us. Then they threaten to run off to BitTorrent because, you know, they paid us once four years ago.
It requires a TON of work to keep software working with all the changes Apple, Adobe, Nvidia and everyone else keeps making. Most of this work we do for free because they’re small incremental changes. Every time you see Beauty Box v3.0.1 or 3.0.2 or 3.0.7 (the current one)… you can assume a lot of work went into that and you don’t have to pay anything. However, eventually the changes add up or Apple (most of the time it’s Apple) does some crazy thing that means we need to rewrite large portions of the plug-in. As happened when FCP went from 7 to X. It’s too much work to do for free. We still need to eat and pay rent.
We want to support our customers. The reason we develop this stuff is because it’s awesome to see the cool things you all do with what we throw out there. However, shelling out $199 does not mean we can support you indefinitely. How much money has that software made you or how much time has it saved you in the three or four years since you bought it? We want to support you, but if we go out of business, that’s probably not going to benefit either of us.
We realize most of our customers understand what it takes to keep our software up to date. We are very grateful to you. We also realize forced upgrades suck and understand the frustration that goes with them. (we buy a lot of software too) Just understand that as a third party/plug-in developer we’re highly dependent on other companies. When one of those companies makes a big change, it usually takes a lot of work to keep things running.
Sorry for the rant, just something that needed to be said (and probably won’t be read by the people that need to read it). Just a little blog therapy that breaks most of the rules of Marketing 101. ;-)