Color grading

Streambox Spectra + DaVinci Resolve on AWS

Streambox Advances the state of Digital Transformation in Post Production to provide real time remote color grading and editing

Cloud-Based workflows are proving to be viable alternatives to traditional media workflows across a broad range of activities, including production, content contribution and post-production. The benefits are clearly compelling and, in many cases, deliver a level of efficiency and agility that would not otherwise be possible.

Cloud Computing platforms, such as Amazon AWS, provide the means to reimagine media tools and applications. It is now possible to build an entire virtual workplace, including media storage and transport as well as enough compute power to enable processing-intensive applications such as color grading.

Cloud-Based Workflow for Color Grading

Cloud-based color grading is now not only feasible but also a reality. DaVinci Resolve can be installed as a SaaS application in AWS (see diagram below) and will support all the features of the desktop version. One benefit is that you no longer need to worry about having a hardware platform that has the necessary compute power. That also means you are no longer need to be on-prem, so you can literally work from wherever you are – and – work with full resolution footage!

Point-to-point Workflow

The left side of this diagram shows AWS assets and DaVinci Resolve, using a remote desktop app (Nice DCV or Teradici). The video that the colorists see is limited to 4:2:0 8-bit.

The right side shows Streambox Spectra, which serves as a real-time, color-accurate streaming encoder that delivers a full quality feed, up to 4:4:4 12-bit!

Spectra resolve aws

One significant drawback to this workflow is that the colorist is limited to a proxy view of the work in progress, which is mostly impractical for the nuances of color grading.

Streambox Spectra provides an ideal solution without impacting the core benefits of AWS workflows. Spectra is a SaaS application that is fully compliant with the Resolve API and serves as a real-time streaming encoder with full resolution and color fidelity. In effect, the colorist can now work with all of the same features as would be expected on-prem, but with the flexibility to work from a remote location.

Another benefit worth mentioning is the Streambox Media Player (SMP), which is free to download and runs on iPad, iPhone, macOS, Apple TV 4K and Windows (iPad shown in diagram above). SMP is a software decoder that will accept streams from any Streambox encoder - Spectra in this case - and playout color-accurate content.

Conducting Remote Review Sessions

During the course of your grading or editing project you will typically conduct reviews. Since we are looking at a virtual solution here, you need the equivalent of a virtual over-the-shoulder" session.

And that is where Spectra really shines...

Streambox Cloud Services provides a highly effective means for conducting remote reviews, with as many collaborators as you like, anywhere in the world.

Spectra resolve aws
Email an invitation to your collaborators and they can join you in a live session with a single click.

Spectra (or any other Streambox encoder) connects to an instance of Streambox Cloud Services and sends an encrypted stream at full quality, up to 4K DCI 4:4:4 12-bit. Streambox Cloud provides dependable, global transport and includes collaboration tools for routing and management.

Remote collaborators can download the free Streambox Media Player to everyday devices, such as iOS, macOS, Windows and even Apple TV, so no more need to ship dedicated hardware to your clients.

When you are ready to start a session, simply email everyone a participation code. That will allow them to connect to your live session, much like Zoom, except they will have a no-compromise viewing experience.

High reliability transport is provided by Streambox's Emmy Award winning codecs, which use some really secret sauce to maneuver around dodgy (i.e. real world) networks, while maintaining the highest possible bit rate and signal quality.