By James DeRuvo (doddleNEWS)
Owners of a SmallHD monitor are used to manually calibrating their monitor on every shoot, in order to ensure the image is accurate. But SmallHD is changing all that with a new firmware update that will enable their monitors to auto-calibrate, making them essentially plug-and-play.
Calling OS3 their biggest firmware update yet, SmallHD has built in several new advanced features including auto calibration, false color, and waveform functionality. SmallHD has further expanded the false color values of their monitors from 0-100%, to custom assignments based on specific values chosen by the director of photography. This will enable users to fine tune their color workflows within higher resolutions like 8K and beyond.
The killer app of OS3 is that of Auto Calibration, and you don’t need a computer to enable it. Just plug in a hardware-based calibration tool, and you can then engage the AC utility to dial in the proper white balance and color settings.
But you can also craft your color gamut to focus on skin tones, ensuring the image you’re trying to get isn’t over- or underexposed by creating a range that the recording will not go beyond, thereby guaranteeing your desired dynamic range.
Another new feature is spot metering utilizing a LUMA waveform. Through the waveform, users will be able to select any area on the screen that they like, which will then illuminate the entire area. Rather nice if you’re really wanting to get a good glow on your actor’s skin. SmallHD has also preloaded a series of stills of various lighting conditions, much like a set LUT that you can then preload and then tweak the lighting settings to your liking. This is called the Image Gallery Viewer.
The OS3 update is compatible with all SmallHD monitors including the 500 and 700 series, as well as ultra bright 703 monitor, which SmallHD announced last Spring at NAB, and their larger 17-inch OLED Production monitors. Considering the OLED production monitors are capable of billions of colors, this feature’s benefit is evident.
And since you can apply all calibration changes through a USB slot in their monitors, you can then apply a calibration to other monitors on set. The benefit here is obvious, a tremendous savings of time on set getting your gear ready according to the lighting conditions as they change, keeping everything consistent.
The free SmallHD firmware update is available for download here. Directions on how to load the firmware update into your monitor can be found there, as well.
Hat Tip: Cinema 5D