Tuesday, August 02, 2016

New grading room - a few notes.

I've been building a Baselight room recently - the monitor is a Sony X300 UHD/HDR display (expensive!) with an AKA custom grading desk. Here are some photos;

All courtesy of my colleague & pal Graham McGuinness

  1. The X300 is a heavy beast at 16Kg and if you want to hang it off a monitor arm - the only one I found suitable was from Novus; we've bought a few things from them recently and they are a very high quality manufacturer. The TSS-range is here but we tend to purchase from our friends at MW/ThinkingSpace as they hold stock and are super-helpful.
  2. The X300 out-of-the-box was a tad hot in 2k mode (they distinguish between rasters as 2k/4k - not HD/UHD; just to keep the DCI film snobs happy!). I was expecting the EBU recommended 100Cd/m2 but was 125 Cd/m2 and a bit blue-in-the-whites, but not enough to bother adjusting unless you were pointing a probe at it! So - this one is correct for rec.709 but the customer (hasn't yet) decided what their wide-colour-gamut and high-dynamic-range workflows will be.
  3. I had my friend and carpenter Tony Andrews (Andrews Construction - for all your carpentry and building requirements!) built the lightbox. In the past I've talked about Crown Plain Grey 5574 Matt Emulsion as being suitable for the backwall, but that's now a discontinued paint and so an excellent match is Delux's "CN8 Grey Steel 3".
  4. Display Port monitors and Baselight-1 - so running Baselight v.6 on an HP Z840 means you have a four display-port output nVidia card. Historically they would prefer you to use DVI monitors, but this is 2016 and a pair of HP Dreamcolor 27" monitors are being extended via Amulet (my favourite KVM extender). In this case you need to have Filmlight provide a new version of xorg.conf for X to see higher order monitors as primary and secondary GUI displays. 
  5. The Blackboard2 control panel is fed over a DVI adaptor hanging off port 2 of the nVidia. Be warned! It runs at a very funny raster (3460 pixels wide!?) at only 15 FPS. It doesn't respond to EDID requests and so consequently you have to use a very simple extender to run it to the suite - no KVM-over-IP, just a fibre balun (I used one of these).
  6. Similarity the USB for the Blackboard declares itself as an HID device but then ignores HID-probes, so again, only use a balun to extend the USB, no over-IP.