Digital Fusion New Features

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  05 May 2002
Question Digital Fusion New Features

As we all know Digital Fusion is very flexible and very productive package offering flexibility in production.
I am a DF user quite a time now. The thing that worries me about the future of this program is that if we have to compare it with other packages like "Combustion","After effects" we can see that there features in other packages that DF does not support.
For example :
- 3D Space with cameras, ( Gaia project is very poor)
- 3D object and scene import (Maya,Softimage,Lightwave etc.) with shading and lighting.
- Sound system in DF is very primitive and not usefull.
- Very few plugins. (It has the AE plugin but most fillters do not work.
- Support in other Video capture systems like "Pinnacle exept targa series "and better codec support *DV codec in AVI is not supported in DF
- Field handling changes every time there is an update.
- I can see in small programs like " Winamp" the plugins thes guys has there and i was wondeing if there could be something like this in DF!!
  05 May 2002
First a note to define what fusion really is, and what it is not. We are a professional application which was initially developed to be optimal for working with film and other large resolution formats. Elements such as audio, 3d spaces, and consumer level multi frame formats are rarely major concerns in the film market.

Having said that, Fusion has turned out to be extremely popular in the video markets, for reasons of speed and depth of features.

In response to your specific concerns I will provide what information I can at this time;

-3D Space with cameras, ( Gaia project is very poor)

Gaia is still in beta. If you are looking for something else 3D, check out Canoa as well.

- 3D object and scene import (Maya,Softimage,Lightwave etc.) with shading and lighting.

Again, Gaia is still in beta form, and may not even be feature complete at this point, but I have definitely imported meshes and lights with this system.

- Sound system in DF is very primitive and not usefull.

Noted. As mentioned above, Fusion support for audio currently extends only to the implementation of scratch track audio. Digital Fusion has always been a graphics application.

- Very few plugins. (It has the AE plugin but most filters do not work.

On the contrary, we have a number of plugin's available. We are the only system to offer the 5D Monsters on WinNT (other than cyborg, 5D's own turnkey system). We offer Ultimatte, Primatte, and ZBig for keying. We offer the Re:Vision FX moblur and twixtor. The Digital Fusion only "Krokodove" tools are also a great investment and provide a number of useful tools.

We have worked a great deal on the AE plugin adapter, and find many commercial applications work. If you find one that doesn't, please send a request to us (request at eye on line dot com) and we will see what we can do. In the end, we are not AE, and we don't plan to become AE anytime soon. So we can only implement AE support to the extent that their public SDK allows.

DFScript is also a useful tool for automating DF, useful for removing the human error factor from tedious things like renaming of clips after footage has been moved.

- Support in other Video capture systems like "Pinnacle except targa series "and better codec support *DV codec in AVI is not supported in DF

If Pinnacle wants to start letting companies develop for their boards without paying unnecessary development fees, we will be right there.

We currently support a number of professional display buffers; DPS, Targa 2000, Video Toaster, Matrox, DVS, and Viewgraphics. If you would like support for your particular board, contact the board manufacturer, as they have not sent us a board to develop on.

- Field handling changes every time there is an update.

This comment makes little sense to me. There was one patch where fields processing was broken, but it was promptly
fixed - current versions have no problems with fields.

I am sorry that as a long time user of our product you find the features you need are more powerful in other products, and perhaps you will find the next version of our software to be more to your liking. No carpenter owns only a hammer, because a hammer is not the perfect tool for every problem. Fusion is well designed for what it does, and it does that well (just like a hammer). If you find your project also requires the use of a screwdriver - well that doesn't surprise us at all.
Jason Kolodziejczak
Digital Fusion Consultant
Toronto, Canada
  05 May 2002
I was wondering on what planet of the film industry you live in ....??
-- you want to tell me that having a sound system capable of playing and scrubbing audio files while compositing is not nessesary ??
-- 3D space like discreet inferno 5D cyborg Combustion After Effects and other systems used in film industry and not only are not usefull ???
-- Handling layers in 3D space with deformations are not usefull also ???
Only merging layers is what insdustry needs???
if thats so ... then i have to move in other package ... soon ..
Even though i didnt want to be so bitter i have to tell my boss to buy 5D Cyborg to solve this useless for you things that bothers me ...

Sorry but i didnt expect this kind of answer from a person inside Eyeon ...

PS. and believe me ... my father is a carpenter and i know better what he needs....
  05 May 2002
We have been using Fusion for a few years now and although it has some features like audio missing it is still the compositing application of choice. We have completed several High Definition sequences exclusively on it and it has performed as good as the Inferno for a far lower cost. Or ask the fine guys at frantic films who completed the explosion shot for Swordfish with no 3D space support.

We would love to see better audio support and 3D space would be nice at some point. I am sure that audio will be available soon. Even the Inferno shifts out of sync with out the dedicated audio subsystem that runs around 30,000 US. ( you could buy several DF stations for that price).

3D space is certainly a nice feature but programs like Shake do not have it yet. AE has it, but good luck using it quickly enough on heavy comps.

As of AE plug-in support, Fusion as been very good, supporting most of the commercial plug-ins, except those that do not adhere to the Adobe SDK (such as Adobe's own plug-ins)

We had some problems with Knoll Lens Flare and the guys at eyeon solved the problem very quickly with a patch for all users. They have the best support I have seen of any company. If you doubt it, try calling discreet.

On the video card issue, they have supported our choice of cards for a long time, including Matrox, DPS, DVS and Boxx.

We only had trouble once with the field issue, and as Jason wrote, it was also quickly fixed.

I don't think that buying Cyborg is going to solve all your problems. We have effectively used Fusion to complete a lot of work instead of using Flame and still find it as efficient and certainly we get a lot more bang for our buck.
  01 January 2006
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