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27/03/2006

Ascent Media installs Quantel Pablo at Digital Media Data Center

A top of the range Quantel Pablo on iQ4 is now in operation at Ascent Media Group’s (AMG) newly completed, 100,000-square foot Digital Media Data Center (DMDC).
The Pablo Suite forms part of the DMDC’s high-end showcase of the newest tools serving the entertainment industry’s top artistic talent. It is integrated into an innovative workflow that combines the highest-quality output with maximum speed and flexibility.
The DMDC is the industry’s largest, most technologically advanced independent digital post-production network and distribution operation. It consolidates under a single roof multiple post-production, media management and syndication services, processes and technologies that are typically spread across several facilities.
At the Pablo’s helm sits senior colorist David Bernstein, who easily inputs material from a wide variety of different image sources. “It gives us the ability to mix and match resolutions,” explained Bernstein. “We can also bring in 2K and 4K files and output them at whatever resolution we want. Because rendering happens in the background, the entire process is invisible, and so fast that it almost feels like real time.”
The first project currently being restored by Bernstein is Twentieth Century Fox’s ‘The Sand Pebbles’. The film garnered six nominations from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences and won Best Actor for Steve McQueen.
Bernstein notes that Quantel devised the Pablo Suite after closely collaborating with leading industry colorists, ensuring a familiar and powerful color grading environment. In addition to all the traditional primary color correction tools, Pablo offers unlimited secondary color correction, unlimited layers, secondary shapes, the ability to track objects, and compositing tools. It is able to store the compositor’s work, allowing the colourist to make compositing changes, or open up layers and change colors without affecting other layers.
The combination of Quantel Pablo and iQ enables Bernstein to consolidate conforming, compositing, titling and other processes into one system, simplifying and streamlining the workflow. “Much of the work requires that a single project be reformatted, for 4:3, 16:9 and so on,” he said. “Now, the iQ with Pablo offers all those abilities.”
Featured at the facility is the first installation of the Quantel iQ and Pablo Control Surface with 4K capability. The suite is used exclusively for feature restoration and digital source mastering all supported by file-based DI workflows and managed thru ProdNET and Agility.
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