Great Resource for Video Producers

If you’re looking for a better higher-quality online site to show off your movies, check out this site we recently found. Openfilm is chock full of well-produced user-generated videos and animation that you can watch in fullscreen comfort. The site is easy to navigate; has several channels, shows and community links; gives users the chance to rate other’s videos and share their own; and even links to how-tos on making money with your videos.

Unlike many other sharing sites, Openfilm actually wants you to give them the best quality hi-rez versions you have and let them do the encoding, so that your video shows at its best resolution.
The site is still in beta, so signing up now gives you a chance to let the creators know how you’d like to view and use their site.

Adobe CS4 Now Shipping

A few months back, we managed to finagle a beta version of CS4, Adobe’s Creative Suite 4 Production Premium that is now shipping, and we’ve been playing with for a while. As you may have heard already, there’s been a shift to a new interface across the board for all apps. This common interface makes working in each individual program a lot easier, especially as most users might not be as savvy in one app as they are in another.

Talking with Adobe about CS4 in a general sense revealed that this release was all about stability and work-flow enhancements, rather than new features. That’s not to say there’s nothing new, but we applaud their effort in refining the core usefulness of the programs. Many people make their living with Adobe applications, and solving work-flow issues is by far more important on a day-to-day basis than the latest effect.

The tricky part about releasing these utilities is that Adobe at this point is largely competing with itself. Is there enough here in CS4 to be worth the $599 upgrade from CS3? What do you really get? We’ll go into more detail in an upcoming review once we get the final versions in, but for now you can read more on the Adobe CS4 features we looked at in the beta software at our blog. Watch for a review in an upcoming issue of Videomaker magazine. CS4, available now: $1,699

FCC Proposes Ban on Wireless Microphones in the 700MHz Spectrum

If you’re a video producer using wireless mics, listen up… you might be unknowingly violating FCC law!

ArsTechnica has a great write-up on the FCC’s proposed ban on wireless microphones that operate in the 698-806MHz frequencies.

The FCC recently auctioned this 698-806MHz space off due to the end of terrestrial analog broadcast in February of 2009, and the telecom companies that bought this spectrum don’t want wireless mics interfering with their new frequencies.

In July, a consortium of public interest groups warned the FCC that unlicensed wireless mic use in the area poses a threat that will become more pronounced after the DTV deadline. The Public Interest Spectrum Coalition’s (PISC) petition estimates that 500,000 to one million unauthorized wireless microphone systems operate in the 700MHz channels, “creating pools of potential interference that could undermine the reliability of these new public safety and commercial wireless systems.

Most manufacturers stopped selling mics in this range last year, but, if you have an older wireless system, it’s possible that your wireless mic could soon be illegal to use in the United States, if it falls within those frequency ranges. Check out the full article at http://arstechnica.com.

In our upcoming January 2009 issue (on news stands December 9th), you can read the first of several stories coming soon in Videomaker that address this new concern and how the FCC digital transmission change in February will affect video producers.

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