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29/06/2018

HPA Announces Engineering Excellence Award Winners

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The winners of the 2018 HPA Engineering Excellence Award have been unveiled by the Hollywood Professional Association (HPA).  

Cinnafilm, Canon, Blackmagic Design and IBM Aspera all scooped awards.

Winners were determined at a blue ribbon judging session held at IMAX on 16 June. The coveted honor will be bestowed 15 November, 2018 at the 13th annual HPA Awards gala at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles.

The Engineering Excellence Award was created to spotlight and reward companies and individuals providing services to the professional media content industry for their outstanding technical and creative ingenuity in media, content production, finishing, distribution and archive.

The winners of the 2018 HPA Award for Engineering Excellence are:

Blackmagic Design - DaVinci Resolve 15
DaVinci Resolve 15, released at NAB this year, offers a major step forward for the post-production workflow, a significant shift in technically and creatively matched toolsets as well as overall efficiency. The platform, designed to provide a full suite of post-production tools, from ingest to delivery, directly integrated in a single ecosystem, includes significant improvements in quality, functionality and time to delivery. Exchange formats, translation and conform can be eliminated, and last-minute change efficiently managed for feature film, episodic TV and short form productions.

Canon - Visual and Technical Monitoring of HDR Images
Canon has seen the need for not only visually seeing HDR images on set, in editorial, and in finishing but also for engineering tools to know exact values of the HDR images and its pixels; compare SDR and HDR images; compare different HDR deliverable systems; out of gamut warnings; and connection to various manufacturers camera metadata.

This complete system from Canon ensures that HDR and SDR image creation is easily and accurately be accomplished.

Cinnafilm, Inc. – PixelStrings
PixelStrings is a cloud-based video conversion service focusing on ultimate playback quality for media. Leveraging the award-winning framerate conversion, retiming, artifact/noise/telecine correction, and transcode technologies from Cinnafilm, this PaaS enables the mass creation of best-possible video versions while leveraging infinite, GPU-enabled cloud compute power. The platform is a growing hub of other best-of-breed media technologies and is a simple pay-as-you-use toolset available 24/7 though a browser. PixelStings enables the freedom of a predictable OpEx process.

IBM Aspera & Telestream - Telestream Vantage with Lightspeed Live Capture powered by Aspera
IBM Aspera and Telestream have developed a game-changing solution for high-speed capture and production of live, broadcast quality video from remote locations for faster production turnaround. The API integration of Aspera's FASPStream streaming technology with Telestream Vantage and Lightspeed Live enables open-file workflows so production teams can work on live video feeds from remote locations in real time, with dramatically lower costs compared to satellite delivery, fiber or on-location production and more flexible deployment options.

Samsung's Onyx Cinema LED technology also received an honourable mention. The technology, with DCI certification, has come to market for both Cinema and Post Production uses with two models: a 2K resolution 5 meter screen and a 4K resolution 10.3 meters screen. LED technology delivers visual quality, technical performance and reliability beyond that of traditional projector-based operations. This system also features state-of-the-art surround sound from Harman/JBL. While operating nominally with traditional 14 ft-L SDR imagery the screen is adopting support for HDR systems such as EClairColor and PQ with operating points at least to 300 cd/m2 and black performance including "off" and 0.005 cd/m2.

Joachim Zell, Chair of the HPA Awards Engineering Committee said: "Once again, the Engineering Excellence judging sessions brought us outstanding presentations from a variety of companies at work in different parts of the media and entertainment ecosystem. The presenters are representative of the amazing work that great companies and brilliant individuals are bringing to the marketplace. The judges had a strong field of excellent technologies to evaluate, and the results were extremely close. Based on the effort, talent and time from the presenters and the enthusiasm of the judges, it is clear that the HPA Engineering Excellence award is meaningful to our industry, and I want to personally thank our presenters and our intrepid judges. Congratulations to the winners and to the entrants for truly impressive work."

In addition to the honours for excellence in engineering, the HPA Awards will recognise excellence in 12 craft categories including colour grading, editing, sound and visual effects. The recipients of the Judges Award for Creativity and Innovation and other special awards will be announced in the coming weeks.
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