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Old May 1st, 2003, 04:42 PM   #31
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: London, UK
Posts: 48
flame is hi-end composting software ('s the big-boys afterFX. Runs on an SGI octane or octane 2 ( The computers aren't 'souped up' as such, and in some senses aren't as powerful as a modern PC. There is nothing particulary special about them.

The system itself is nothing more complicated than a PC, a basestation, monitor, keyboard, mouse, video in/out and an external disk array (called 'stones' in discreet speak). It could just as easily run on a PC....more than that I am contracted not to speak about !!!!

Smoke, cheaper than Flame (for marketing reasons only...just as complex) ..more like a cross between AfterFX/Premiere (forgive me for the trite comparisons). Also runs on Octane(2)...bit of a niche market in my opinion.

Inferno,, discreet's flagship software, running on an onyx2 is slightly more impressive. In it's rack form, about the size of a large purple fridge, but in reality not much more powerful than the PC size Octane2. In most circumstances no better than fact a modern flame system, running on the latest Octane2 dual is quite a bit faster that Inferno on Onyx2 quad or eight processor.

In the dim and distant past, the post-production world was run by Quantel ( They almost invented modern post-production with their HARRY (later HENRY), just slightly more powerful than a sinclair ZX81. Unfortunately Quantel was run by 'suits' who thought that everything they touched would turn to gold. Discreet Logic, as it was named at the time, was the New Kid on the Block, which understood the market, cared about its clients and was in touch with the artists that operated the machines. Flame became the byword for powerful compositing became 'hoover' or 'sellotape'. Over a period of years it essentially killed off Quantel. Unfortunately, as discreet logic (later called discreet*) as a company grew, it fell into the same traps as Quantel, not listening to users, not releasing working updates on time, more interested in making money not art.

Now it turns out, after years in the wilderness, that Quantel just might have a decent product, just might have learned a few lessons.....and discreet, well thats another story.

rant 2 over !

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Old May 2nd, 2003, 08:29 AM   #32
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: baltimore, md
Posts: 51
thanks simon. that's quite a history lesson. thanks a lot for the information.

i'd definitely have to agree about the last discreet comment. we use 3dSM wehre i work and have really had nothing but problems with it and them ever since we bought it.

thanks for the urls too. i'm gong to have to check out some of the ones i don't know and read up a bit.

cheers. J.
Jeremy Martin
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