Monday, November 4, 2019

ProEXR 2.5

Today marks the release of Adobe After Effects 2020, which includes ProEXR 2.5. In fact, improved multi-channel performance is one of the highlighted features in this version of AE. Users who had previously installed version 2.0 have already been enjoying the extra speed, but now it's shipping with AE itself.

ProEXR 2.5 gets rid of the separate ProEXR AE plug-in, which has been merged into the main OpenEXR plug-in. That means AE now ships with the features in ProEXR AE, such as the ability to set up your layered comps for you, as well as export layered EXR files. To have AE set up comps for you, import your EXRs using AE's regular Import File dialog, and then tell it to Import As Composition, which is very easy to miss. Fans of the old File menu item can bring it back by editing their AE preferences file.

Import As Composition
Also coming along for the ride is the Cryptomatte plug-in that first appeared in ProEXR 2.0. In addition, ProEXR 2.5 uses newly added AE APIs to support the reading and writing of timecode with EXR files. And finally, the EXtractoR and IDentifier interfaces have been re-done, getting rid of their modal dialogs in favor of menus right in the Effect Controls Window.

The easiest way to get ProEXR 2.5 is to just start using the new version of AE. For people sticking with older versions, you can still download the plug-ins from the ProEXR site.


Friday, August 30, 2019

The joys of an antique keyboard

Apple Extended Keyboard (AEK) photo by bujcich
The best tech I’ve bought this year is a keyboard made in 1987.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Apple delivers, mostly

I was wrong! Apple has indeed delivered a cheese grater sequel in the new Mac Pro. It is a tower. With slots. Thank goodness.

I didn't expect Apple to deliver everything I wanted in the new Mac Pro, which would basically be the 2010 Mac Pro with updated specs and the ability to run modern Nvidia cards. I thought maybe I'd get 50% satisfaction, but I'd say Apple gave me more like 70%, which is pretty good! But let's talk about that remaining 30%.

Friday, May 31, 2019

Dreading the new Mac Pro

The unveiling of a new Mac Pro may finally be upon us. In a bout of uncharacteristic frankness and humility, Apple admitted to journalists in April 2017 that it had made a mistake, designing the “trash can” Mac Pro into a “thermal corner.” They said a redesign would be coming in the form of a “modular system” that would take more than a year to ship. It's now been over two years and next week’s WWDC will mark the 6 year anniversary of the loathed cylindrical Mac Pro’s announcement, so it seems likely an unveiling will come Monday morning. I assume Apple wants me to be excited that the long wait is finally over, but instead I am terrified—terrified that Apple will get the Mac Pro wrong again, and that my long relationship and investment in the Mac for professional graphics work has no future.