3D, Aliens, Bigfoot, True 4K and The Cloud we’re just some of the highlights from Day 3 at the SMPTE Tech Conference and Expo. Even more presentations today meant the mornings panels going over 3D needed to be held at the Chinese Theater while High Performance Networks and Sound Techniques were discussed in the two main conference salons. I decided to check out the 3D panels, where Patrick Waddell from Harmonic Inc went over the 3D Content Deliver Ecosystem. He focused on live production and the standards and specifications of encoding 3D content for broadcast. It seems the 3D ecosystem is still a little bit of a mess with many questions left to be answered and standards that still need to be sorted out. Shailendra Mathur from Avid presented “Editing and Managing Multi-Channel Video – A Light Field Approach.” This gist of the presentation was using super-sampling to capture as much information as possible to allow more creative freedom in post. 7D Plenoptic cameras were also discussed. Go much deeper than that and you have to start to talk about Light Fields, data models, and mult-view data representations. The mornings 3D panels concluded with Legendary filmmaker and visual effects pioneer Doug Trumbull & Dave Schnuelle from Dolby discussing High Frame Rates for 3D. 48fps and 60fps are being discussed and manufacturers are starting to include support for the higher frame rates that promise less strobing and according to proponents like James Cameron, a better overall 3D viewing experience.

After the morning break and a cup of coffee to get jumpstart the brain, I grabbed a seat in Salon 1 and caught Zenith Electronics’ Wayne Bretl present “Theoretical and Practical Limits to Wide Color Gamut Imaging in Objects, Reproducers, and Cameras” and let me tell you this one went right over my head. I know he talked about color gamut and how cameras represent colors but beyond that I honestly didn’t understand much more. Younghoon Lim gave the next presentation and discussed DSLR video and enhancement algorithms to compensate for the jello effects and flickering of DSLR video. He showed demos of footage from a 5DMKII that had the flicker one would find in hi detail areas, corrected out. While the process did soften the image slightly it did do a surprisingly good job. Hugo Gaggioni, Chief Technology Officer for the Broadcast and Production Systems Division of Sony Electronics went over the new Sony F65 4K camera, it’s unique sensor design and the new SRMASTER recoding. Check back soon for a detailed breakdown on the F65.

Former senator and MPAA Chairman Chris Dodd gave the keynote speech at the Industry Luncheon and said he’s committed to supporting the some 2.3 million people in US working in film industry. He touched on piracy and said we must “bring down” websites pirating films.

After lunch it was time to talk about file-based workflows and like 3D it’s a little bit of a mess out there. As Peter Defreyne from the VTR Media Lab pointed out, when it comes to file-based workflows it’s not one size fits all.