Our Camera to Cloud Ecosystem is Expanding

Our Camera to Cloud Ecosystem is Expanding

When we launched Frame.io Camera to Cloud (C2C) earlier this year, we had a feeling that it would spark people’s interest.

We’d already done a successful trial run with Zeiss during the Sundance Film Festival in January 2020, with their team in Park City and their editor in LA.

Then, after the pandemic arrived, C2C was key to getting the first IATSE-crewed Hollywood feature safely back to work in July 2020.

Slate for Songbird, the first feature to be produced during lockdown
C2C enabled the first IATSE-crewed Hollywood movie to be completed safely during the pandemic.

After subsequent months of fine-tuning with our initial launch partners, Teradek and Sound Devices, we felt that we were ready to reliably provide an easy-to-use solution that could change the process of video creation by closing the gap between production and post. Frame.io C2C officially launched on March 31, 2021.

Growing the ecosystem

Since then, thanks to the early adopters of this new workflow, we’ve been both surprised and enormously gratified to see how many of you have embraced it!

In just the past eight months, more than 1,300 productions and 4,000 collaborators have uploaded more than 150,000 takes to Frame.io on more than 500 paired devices. A number of you who have tried it have told us how profoundly it’s changed the way you work—and now that you’re working in this streamlined way, you’ll never go back.

We’ve even had customers invent C2C workflows that we hadn’t originally thought of, like the lens-testing service at Old Fast Glass.

Old Fast Glass using Frame.io for remote lens testing
Old Fast Glass uses C2C to enable remote, real-world testing of their carefully curated collection of vintage lenses.

One of our main goals for C2C was to keep growing the ecosystem in order to make C2C available to virtually anyone who shoots video for any reason. Everyone knows the pain points involved with having to ship a drive to someone before they can properly view what’s been shot or they can start editing.

That’s why we believed that Frame.io C2C could be a true game-changer by helping anybody who’s making video content save time and work more creatively and efficiently.

So today, we’re excited to announce some new key integrations and functionality that will continue to make Frame.io C2C the most accessible and user-friendly camera-to-cloud workflow for all video creators across the industry.

More access, more devices

When we initially launched, you needed to use our iOS app to connect devices to Frame.io.

Well, today we’re announcing easier authentication by letting production teams pair and manage C2C devices on any desktop or mobile browser. That means that in addition to our iPhone and iPad apps, we’ve added the ability to connect to Frame.io and authenticate your devices through Mac, PC and, yes, Android.

In addition to our existing support for Sound Devices 888 and Scorpio field-audio recorders, Aaton Cantar X3 recorders are now Frame.io C2C-compatible.

The AatonDigital Cantar X3 field recorder
The Aaton Cantar X3 field recorder is now C2C-compatible.

As was already the case with the Sound Devices recorders, sound mixers can send full-bandwidth audio directly to the cloud, further speeding up time-critical workflows with tight delivery schedules.

Enhancing creativity

Frame.io C2C isn’t “just” about closing the gap between production and post—we’re always looking for ways to improve the creative collaboration experience for professionals who live on set and in pre-production, as well.

Our new integration with the popular filmmaking apps Pomfort Livegrade and ShotHub on macOS means that cinematographers, DITs, and colorists have a powerful new workflow for automatically uploading, organizing, and distributing CDL and LUT color correction files throughout their teams.

Masked DIT at work with Frame.io C2C enabled cart
Frame.io C2C narrows the gap between production and post.

The result? Creatives are able to generate something very close to the director and cinematographer’s vision that editors can immediately begin using as they cut.

Then there are the kinds of apps that simplify logistics so you can spend more time on what matters most—your creative work. In much the same way that Frame.io was developed by video pros who were seeking a way to collaborate more effectively in post-production, ZoeLog was created by former AC Zoe Van Brunt to solve the problem of manually generating and sharing the necessary data included on camera reports.

A crew member uses ZoeLog during the shoot
ZoeLog lets you share valuable on-set data with anyone who needs access.

Now, with this new integration, it’s possible to share valuable on-set data like camera reports—right alongside the video proxies—directly with the many departments who need access.

From script supervisors to second-unit crews to the editorial team, VFX supervisors, and more, anyone who needs camera report data can get it quickly and securely through Frame.io.

The next frontier in C2C workflows revolves around pre-visualization and pre-production, and we’re thrilled to share our new collaboration with Magic ViewFinder App.

The Frame.io API lets apps like MagicViewFinder interact with C2C.
Our API lets apps like MagicViewFinder interact with C2C.

Directors’ viewfinders are a vital part of setting up shots, storyboarding, and location scouting. For too long, this important work depended on disparate email attachments and clunky communication between remote collaborators. Now, through C2C, your camera-sensor and lens-accurate pre-visualization files are automatically sent to the same platform as your video, audio, CDL, LUT, and camera report files. When it comes time to comment, review, or approve the storyboards, you can now work on the storyboard itself—with the same award-winning and feature-rich tools found in Frame.io.

Accessibility and flexibility

If you think about it, for more than a century production teams were required to offload, copy, process, and ship some sort of physical media in order to create dailies.

Frame.io started by centralizing all your assets and collaborators in one secure place in the cloud. With the addition of C2C, we’ve eliminated the need to exchange drives, which saves considerable time—in some cases, as much as days.

This workflow permanently eliminates the gap between production and post-production, giving video creators more time to focus on what they’re capturing.

We listen to your feedback and hear your requests.

What also makes Frame.io C2C uniquely flexible is that we’ve created the free Cloud Devices API. Why is that significant? Because we listen to your feedback and hear your requests—and we know that there are lots (and lots) of devices and apps that you love to use.

So, all you have to do is let those manufacturers or developers know that you’d love for them to become C2C compatible. Then, all they have to do is fill out the form on our Developers website, and we’ll help them get started.

Our goal is to make cloud workflows available to everyone who shoots video.

That’s why we made C2C free with a paid Frame.io account. We’ve even got one- and three-month Enterprise plans available so you can purchase the service you need for the duration of your production.

Time equals balance

In the summer of 2019, MovieLabs—the pre-eminent Hollywood think tank with members from Disney, Warner Bros., Paramount, Sony, and Universal Studios—released their 2030 Vision white paper outlining a workflow of the future in which physical media would become obsolete and all work would take place in the cloud.

Viewing C2C footage remotely in Frame.io, moments after it was recorded on set.
 

At the time of publication, Frame.io was already at work on a number of the ten principles comprising their paper. But the first, and perhaps most important, principle focuses on the idea that removing the need to move physical assets around will result in huge time savings.

Coincidentally, there’s never been a point in our industry where time has been a hotter topic. The recent negotiations between IATSE and AMPTP have demonstrated how vital it is to shorten workdays so that crew members get adequate turnaround time to rest.

Whether you’re on an IATSE crew or you’re shooting a commercial or corporate video, everyone wants (and deserves) a better work/life balance.

But no matter whether you’re on an IATSE crew or you’re shooting a commercial or corporate video, everyone wants (and deserves) a better work/life balance. The fact that we’re hearing from you, actual Frame.io C2C users, that you feel the impact of this new way of working, is what lies at the heart of our mission.

You’ve told us that now that your director or cinematographer knows that they’ve got the shot they need, they can feel good about moving on to the next setup—or wrapping for the day. Or that you needed to deliver something to social media quickly and didn’t have to worry about shipping drives and missing deadlines. Or that you were able to spend more time with your family because you were able to work more efficiently.

Film set breaking down after shoot
When you know you’ve got the shot, you can feel good about wrapping for the day.

The point is that saving time ripples into reducing stress, which ripples into so many different types of positive outcomes. As a creative, you’re more focused, so you can be more creative. As a producer, you’ve saved time which means you’ve saved money. As a client or stakeholder, you’ve been able to see that your feedback has been incorporated into a shoot—when it really matters. And that ripples into all the various departments, from pre-production all the way through final delivery.

It’s why we want to encourage you to try out this workflow for yourself, and to let us know what you think could make it even better. We’re here to achieve a common goal—to make the process of creating video content more available to, and collaborative for, everyone. It’s our honor and privilege to work with all of you as we find new ways to make our lives a little easier and our work flow better.

And as we go forward, the cloud’s the limit.

Thank you to Michael Cioni for contributing this article.

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