On the show floor at NAB 2012 GoPro had more to show off than just a finalized version of its $99 WiFi BacPac and Remote Control kit we saw at CES, announcing a ProTune firmware update that should bring an all new level of quality to its existing HD Hero 2 cameras -- for free. Once it's released in the in the summer, the new ProTune mode will enable owners to record their video at a new 35Mbps data rate, and shoot at 24fps to more easily intercut it with other sources later. Also integral to the new software is the "CineStyle" color profile developed by Technicolor that will let pros and prosumers streamline their workflow and produce better looking videos. We got a look at some of the video shot with beta versions of the new firmware aboard and the tweaks did plenty to enhance the color balance and image quality we were already impressed by earlier this month in the desert. Unsurprisingly given the pro atmosphere here at NAB, GoPro is also continuing to push the Cineform codec it acquired last year. There are press releases after the break as well as a few more pictures in the gallery, including a few more of its new underwater dive housing (above) with a flat front to reduce blurring and vignetting.
GoPro @ NAB 2012See all photos
Technicolor-Certified ProTune Mode Adds 24p, 35Mbps Data Rate; Non-Destructive 3D LUT and Color Presets to Greatly Enable Professional Production Workflow
HALF MOON BAY, CA & HOLLYWOOD, CA, – (April 17, 2012) – GoPro, the world's most versatile camera, and Technicolor, a worldwide leader in technology and color-science, announced today at the NAB 2012 Show in Las Vegas they have worked to embed Technicolor's CineStyle™ color profile for the debut of the new GoPro Protune™ (a free firmware upgrade available for the HD HERO2 camera, available this summer).
Certified by Technicolor, and developed by GoPro, the Protune mode firmware upgrade is a significant development for the professional production and post-production market, which incorporates Technicolor color science into GoPro's latest product launch. These new features combine to allow professional filmmakers a vastly improved and flexible workflow for seamless integration with other source material and post-production platforms.
Key features of the GoPro Protune mode include:
24fps frame rate, enabling GoPro HERO2 content to be easily intercut with other sources without a frame rate conversion;
35Mbps data rate for the industry's highest quality compressed image with virtually zero artifacts;
Neutral color profile, allowing for greater flexibility in a color correction workflow;
Log curve encoding, offering more detail in shadows and highlights;
Reduced sharpening and noise reduction for improved flexibility in professional post- production and color design workflows.
"GoPro Protune mode is an extraordinary development for the entire professional production market – from filmmakers, cinematographers and DITs, to editors and colorists who are increasingly relying on the HERO2 for cinematic productions," said David Newman, senior director of software engineering for GoPro. "Developing this with Technicolor has provided us with a level of technological expertise that optimizes Protune for the professional market. Filmmakers are making critical decisions every day on the tools they'll invest in for their cinematic productions, and we are confident our collaboration with Technicolor makes their decision that much easier. We're looking forward to our customers' reaction when we unveil Protune at NAB 2012."
"Technicolor is thrilled to make its color science available to GoPro throughout its Protune upgraded firmware," stated Technicolor's Alejandro Guerrero, senior vice president, Technicolor Digital Productions. "With more than 130,000 (and counting) cinematographers already using our CineStyle color profile, we are committed to expanding the CineStyle toolkit and are thrilled to support GoPro as it expands its market base."
Seamless Integration with GoPro CineForm Studio
GoPro Protune mode makes integration with GoPro CineForm Studio simple, automatically detecting Protune settings and applying the default adjustments to create stunning images. The workflow is further enhanced by a variety of color tuning presets, or 'looks' that further enhance the filmmakers' story.
Using Protune with GoPro CineForm Studio Premium and GoPro CineForm Studio Professional provides additional benefits, offering extensive color correction controls and customizable presets to create professional, cinematic looks from the GoPro HERO2 captured content. Non-destructive 3D LUTs provide even more flexibility, enabling users to further tweak their images, manipulate saturation and contrast and color correction controls to create highly stylized content.
GoPro Protune mode is available as a free firmware upgrade through the GoPro CineForm Studio software, which is also available as a free download here.
GoPro Broadens Efforts to Make GoPro CineForm Codec Widely Available to Professional Production Market
GoPro Moves Closer to Adoption by SMPTE as the VC-5 Standard
HALF MOON BAY, CA (April 17, 2012) – GoPro, the world's most versatile camera, announced today it is broadening its efforts to ensure wide availability of the GoPro CineForm Codec, its high-performance video codec that has been highly valued in video post-production for many years as the industry's highest quality compression format. The GoPro CineForm Codec is well established in the professional filmmaking marketplace, and has been integrated with several industry-leading devices and video cameras such as the Silicon Imaging SI-2K, Cinedeck mobile capture systems, and many renowned acquisition devices.
In addition to its efforts to make the GoPro CineForm Codec more widely available, GoPro is also supporting the efforts of SMPTE to adopt the codec as the VC-5 video compression standard to provide an open codec standard for video acquisition and post-production.
"Since GoPro's acquisition of CineForm last year, we realize there may be some questions in the professional production and post production markets about the future of this award-winning codec," said David Newman, senior director of software engineering for GoPro. "This announcement sends a strong message to the community that GoPro is fully committed, and is accelerating its efforts, to make GoPro CineForm Codec widely available for camera and acquisition device developers. At the same time, we are moving closer toward achieving adoption by SMPTE as the VC-5 video compression standard. This development just makes the decision to embrace the GoPro CineForm Codec as the codec of choice that much easier."
The GoPro CineForm Codec supports RAW camera formats such as Bayer patterns as well as RGB and YCrCb with an optional alpha channel and color difference sub-sampling.
Participation by the broader video community in drafting of the VC-5 standard will enhance the GoPro CineForm Codec to make it more suitable for a wider range of applications.
For more information, please visit www.gopro.com/cineform.
Interested parties are also encouraged to join the SMPTE Standards Committee and participate in the development of the VC-5 specification. The group is particularly interested in feedback from video-editing professionals regarding their experience with video compression technologies and their requirements for use of a VC-5 codec in their video workflows. For more information on participating in the SMPTE VC-5 development, contact either Edward Reuss (firstname.lastname@example.org), chairman of the SMPTE VC-5 Ad Hoc Group, or the SMPTE Director of Standards Engineering, Peter Symes (email@example.com).