Tiffen Dfx Video/Film Plug-in – review

Filters are still an essential part of any videographer’s kit, but optical filters can be expensive. Tiffen, a company renowned for making high quality photographic filters, also produces a series of digital filters including the Dfx Video/Film Plug-in that simulates most of their award winning traditional glass filters.  Whilst simple filters can be easily simulated within most video editing applications, the Tiffen plug-in includes numerous special effect filters which would be very hard to replicate. The Dfx Video/Film Plug-in runs as a plug-in in the following applications Adobe After Effects, Avid, Adobe Premiere Pro and Apple Final Cut Pro.

The Tiffen Dfx Video/Film Plug-in comprises of 100 filters with each offering many pre-defined presets, giving you effectively 2000+ filters. The Dfx suite also gives you the ability to customise the filters and save them as your own unique filters, effectively allowing you a limitless collection of unique filters for your production.  The Dfx filter suite is also available for stills photography as a plug-in for Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Elements, Adobe Lightroom and Apple Aperture or as a Standalone application. The features in each version are more or less the same.

The Tiffen filters in the Premiere Pro Effects panel

Using Adobe Premiere Pro CS6, the filters are installed as seven sub folders in the Effects > Video Effects folder. These are; Tiffen Dfx v3 Film lab (9 filters), HFX Diffusion (12 filters), HFX Grads/Tints (15 filters), Image (17 filters), Lens (11 filters), Light (22 filters) and Special effects (14 filters).  Although the Tiffen web site claims 121 filters I could only find 100, although some of the filters do have two or more names e.g. Soft F/X and Warm Soft F/X. However, having said that, most of the filters contain numerous presets, for example the Film Labs contains 37 pre-defined film looks which includes most popular film types from B/W to Kodak Gold and Lomo effects. To add to the versatility, you can create your own custom preset from scratch or alter any of the preset filters’ parameters and save them as a custom filter.

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Adobe Introduces All-New Photoshop Elements 11 and Premiere Elements 11


Revamped User Interfaces and Innovative Features Make Photo and Video Editing, Organising and Sharing Easier

London, UK. — Sept. 25, 2012  Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE) today announced Adobe® Photoshop® Elements 11 and Adobe® Premiere® Elements 11, newly designed versions of its No. 1 selling consumer photo- and video-editing software*. Photoshop Elements 11 offers a complete solution for editing, organising and sharing photo creations while Premiere Elements 11 offers easy creation of engaging home movies with professional flair. Available as stand-alone products, Photoshop Elements 11 and Premiere Elements 11 can also be purchased together in a low-priced bundle, providing powerful, easy-to-use tools that simplify editing and turn everyday snapshots and videos into sensational photos and home movies, creating memories that can instantly be shared with friends and family. Both solutions are available for Windows® and Mac.

“Photos and videos allow us to capture and share moments in time,” said Lea Hickman, vice president products, Creative Consumer Business, Adobe. “Powerful – yet friendly and easy to use – Photoshop Elements 11 and Premiere Elements 11 inspire creativity and help consumers make the most of remembering and sharing these personal memories.”

Create Great Photos with Powerful, Intuitive Tools in Photoshop Elements 11
Make photos look their best with editing options that offer virtually everything from quick fixes to a number of creative possibilities:

  • A completely refreshed, user-friendly interface featuring the same engine as Adobe Photoshop – the industry standard for digital imaging – includes easily-navigated Quick, Guided and Expert editing modes; one-click options; a helpful Action bar; and big, bold icons to help users get the most from their shots
  • Organise photos based on people, places (via Google maps geo-tagging) or events easily and intuitively
  • New Guided Edits make pro-level effects like tilt-shift, vignettes and high and low-key easy to create
  • New filters – Comic, Graphic Novel and Pen & Ink – inspire creativity by turning photos into stunning illustrations
  • Intelligent Photoshop technology makes it easy to extract objects from different photos
  • Easily share photos via email, Facebook, YouTube™, Vimeo® and more†

Pro-quality Videos Made Easy with Premiere Elements 11
Create attractive, pro-level videos with automated moviemaking options to take the work out of editing:

  • An entirely new and improved user interface including many of the same updates found in Photoshop Elements 11
  • Add polish with a wide range of great-looking effects, transitions, themes, titles, disc menus and professional-level effects and sound
  • Give videos Hollywood movie styles with FilmLooks; easily apply slow and fast motion effects; dial-in colors with slider controls; effortlessly integrate blends for seamless transitions; and make adjustments with Quick Presets
  • Show off finished creations with integrated video sharing on Vimeo†

Pricing and Availability
Adobe Photoshop Elements 11 and Adobe Premiere Elements 11 software for Windows and Mac is available now, and will soon be available at retail outlets such as The Photoshop Elements 11 & Premiere Elements 11 bundle is available now for a suggested retail price of £95.30 (ex VAT), with upgrade pricing of £78.63 (ex VAT). Adobe Photoshop Elements 11 and Adobe Premiere Elements 11 are available individually for a suggested retail price of £63.54 (ex VAT), with upgrade pricing of £51.62 (ex VAT). (Prices listed are the Adobe direct store prices in the U.K.; reseller prices may vary. Prices do not include tax or shipping and handling.)

Information about other language versions, as well as pricing, upgrade and support policies is available at For free training videos, visit Adobe TV.

Education pricing for students, faculty and staff in K-12 and higher education is available from Adobe Authorised Education Resellers and the Adobe Education Store. Visit for more information about education volume licensing for higher education and K-12 institutions.

About Adobe Systems Incorporated

Adobe is changing the world through digital experiences. For more information, visit



Canon expands its contribution to cinematic culture with the introduction of the new EOS C500 4K Digital Cinema Camera and the EOS C100 Digital Video Camera. The C500 will take its place as the flagship camera model in Canon’s Cinema EOS System while the C100 provides another option for beginning filmmakers working on a budget. The C500 is Canon’s high-end professional 4K (4096 x 2160-pixel) cinema camera capable of originating uncompressed RAW output for external recording to meet the demands of premium cinematic productions and other top-quality production markets. The C100 digital video camera is a compact, affordable entry-level model delivering full 1920×1080 HD video and integrating the popular AVCHD codec for universal compatibility with laptop and desktop editing systems. The C500 will be available in both EF- and PL-mount versions; while the C100 will be offered in EF mount only and will be compatible with the more than 70 zoom and prime lenses in Canon’s EF, EF-S and EF Cinema lens line ups.

The EOS C500 4K digital cinema camera and EOS C100 digital video camera join Canon’s Cinema EOS System which includes two other camera models, the EOS C300 digital cinema camera for mainstream HD production and the EOS-1D C 4K Digital SLR cinema camera for 4K and HD filmmakers favoring the SLR form factor. The Cinema EOS System also offers filmmakers optical diversity with seven EF Cinema lens models: the compact and lightweight CN-E15.5-47mm T2.8 L wide-angle cinema zoom and the CN-E30-105mm T2.8 L telephoto cinema zoom (available in EF and PL versions); the CN-E14.5-60mm T2.6 L wide-angle zoom and CN-E30-300mm T2.95-3.7 L telephoto zoom (also available in EF and PL versions); and the CN-E24mm T1.5 L, CN-E50mm T1.3 L, and CN-E85mm T1.3 L prime lenses for EF-mount cameras, in addition to the more than 60 lenses in Canon’s EF and EF-S lens lines (which include macro, fisheye, telephoto, and tilt-shift models).

4K, 2K, and Full HD Image Quality
The Canon EOS C500 and C500 PL digital cinema cameras are designed to provide a versatile high-quality 4K imaging solution to high-end productions. High-quality 4K resolution imaging has become the new standard for advanced effects and is particularly important for big-budget motion pictures that include scenes compositing live-action cinematography with high-resolution computer-generated imagery. The C500 and C500 PL cameras output 4K resolution to external recorders as a 10-bit uncompressed RAW data stream, as well as offering the additional versatility of being able to output quad full-HD (3840 x 2160), 2K (2048 x 1080), full HD (1920 x 1080), and other imaging options. All of these digital image source formats fully conform to established SMPTE production standards. All 4K formats can be selected to operate from one to 60 frames per second. When shooting in 2K, the C500 and C500 PL cameras employ a 12-bit RGB 4:4:4 signal format from one to 60 frames-per-second (fps) as well. For high-speed shooting and slow motion capture the cameras can be set to a 10-bit YCrCb 4:2:2 mode, and can output 4K or 2K video up to 120 fps.

While outputting 4K or 2K video to an external recorder, the Canon EOS C500 and C500 PL digital cinema cameras simultaneously record a 50 Mbps Full HD video file in-camera to the user’s choice of one or two CF cards. The 8-bit 4:2:2 in-camera recordings can be used as a proxy for offline editing of 4K projects, and they are also suitable for various projects that do not require 4K resolution. Equipped with Canon’s exceptional Super 35mm 8.85-megapixel CMOS sensor, both C500 camera models are compatible with a wide range of interchangeable Canon lenses – the C500 is compatible with EF, EF-S and EF Cinema lenses for Canon SLR cameras, while the C500 PL is compatible with PL-mount EF Cinema lenses and other PL-mount lenses. Highly mobile and compact, the C500 digital cinema camera provides the same ergonomic features as the C300 model, with the exception of a fixed hand grip that incorporates a pair of 3G-SDI ports for 4K video output and another pair of video ports for monitoring purposes. Canon is working with several independent manufacturers of external video recorders to support smooth workflow options, and these recorders are expected to be available by the time the EOS C500 and C500 PL 4K digital cinema cameras ship to authorized dealers later this year.

Pricing and Availability
The Canon EOS C500 and C500 PL 4K Digital Cinema Cameras are scheduled to be available in October for an estimated list price of $30,000. The Canon EOS C100 Digital Video Camera is scheduled to be available in November 2012 for an estimated list price of $7,999.


an intro to Corel VideoStudio X5

Welcome to the first of our new series of video tutorials where, over the next few weeks, we will be showing you how to edit video and put together a short video production. The series will cover every stage from importing  movie clips, editing, applying colour corrections, special effects (FX), adding titles and music. If you are new to video, whether you’re shooting with an HDSLR or camcorder, there will be plenty of information to help you get started. Finally we will show you how to  upload your movie to YouTube or social media sites and how to create a DVD .

Please feel free to post any problems that you may have, on the comments section at the bottom of each tutorial page.


Video at top of screen

Digital Film Tools – Film Stocks review

At one time photographers would match a specific film stock to create a mood for their photographs. For example a high ISO (ASA) film might have been chosen for a gritty grainy look, or Kodachrome 25 for ultra smooth colours, maybe even shoot reversal film stock and do some cross processing.  Now digital capture has taken away that choice, instead we have  an overall smooth grain less look on almost everything that is shot. There are many things that can be done in Photoshop or other imaging applications whereby we can simulate many of the traditional film stock. However, many of the film effects may require an above average  working knowledge of filters, combination of filters and blending modes.

Film Stocks plug-in

We have been sent a copy of Film Stocks by Digital Film Tools. This is a plug in suite of filters that simulates 288 different colour and black & white film stocks and old film processes. You also have the option to customise any of the predefined settings and save them as a new preset. The plug-in can be used with Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom, Apple Aperture. A separate licence is required for Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe After Effects, Apple Final Cut Pro and Apple Final Cut Pro X.  So let’s take an in-depth look at Film Stocks.

Film Stocks In use with Photoshop

With an image open in Photoshop, simply go to menu Filter > Digital Film Tools > Film Stocks 1.0. This launches an impressive, yet easy to use interface. Your image occupies the main window. A series of presets are located on the left hand side, these will change depending on which film stock type is selected from the film category thumbnails located at the bottom of the screen. The image control parameters are located on the right hand side together with a histogram. For photographers who want quick results you only need to click on a film category and then select a preset setting that suits the subject, then click the Done symbol. It’s really as simple as that, you don’t even have to wade through the user guide. However, there is far more to Film Stocks than this.

Simulation of Ilford FP4

Once you have selected a setting that you like then use the parameters to fine tune the image to your liking. There is a plethora of adjustment options available, these include curves, RGB sliders, Colour Correction sliders, Colour filter overlays, Sharpen, Diffusion, Vignette and Grain. Any adjustments that you make can be saved as a new preset and applied to other images.

A low resolution version of your image is used in the preview window, this makes applying Sharpen a difficult task as the image is pixelated.  You can change the resolution by going into File Preferences and changing the Preview size from 1024  to 2048, this does improve things but it is still a low resolution preview.  Amendment – There is a Magnifier which can be turned On or Off, just press the number 1 key, this will give you a true 100% view of the image with the effect applied. The Magnifier window can be dragged away from the left column and resized to fit screen or any other size you require.”  Having a smaller preview does speed up any adjustments you make, and these appear almost instantly, however, some of the sliders do have a slight sticky feel, often you move the cursor to leave the slider behind. To the right of every slider is a Reset button, this puts the value of that slider back to its default, I liked this inclusion, most other applications the Reset button can often take everything back to a default setting. The other nice feature is that if you expand the Parameters panel then you can have finer control on the sliders, or simply type in a number.

Simulation of an AutoChrome

The preview window has several options, you can zoom in or out with the magnifying glass or use the I & O keys – pity Digital Tools didn’t stay with Photoshop + & – keys. Although a numeric value is displayed, you can’t enter a value with your keyboard, I was trying to get a 200% magnification but could not achieve it. The pan tool can be accessed either by the icon or using the space bar on your keyboard,  I was able to smoothly pan around the image.. Other options include Before and After and split screen previews, fit to screen, snapshot, view snapshot etc. When viewing in split screen mode you can drag a marker to define how much of the screen you want to preview. However, if you have another tool selected then you can’t move the markers, even though the cursor is displaying a double arrow.

The predefined effects are excellent with a wide variety of options in each category. The categories include; Black & White Films, Black & White Lo Fi, Colour Films Cross processing, Colour Films Polaroid, Colour Films Print, Colour Films slides, Faded, Historical, Lo-Fi, Lo-Fi cross processing and Motion picture films. There are numerous presents under each category, for example under Colour Slide there is a preset  available for film stocks from Agfa, Fuji (Velvia, Provia), Gaf 500, Kodachromes -25, 64 & 200 and almost all Ektachromes. Under Black & White most popular film stocks from Ilford, Kodak, Polaroid and Agfa are included.

Faded photograph effect

The Historical collection includes many long forgotten processes, and some I have never heard of before “Ziatype” . Some effects are more convincing than others, certainly if you used fine art media to print out the results then you are not going to be disappointed.

Multiple effects can be applied to an image by creating a new layer and then using masks to hide portions thereby revealing an underlying layer. This can produce some unusual effects that could never be achieved by using film.

Finally when you are happy with the result, press the Done button. This button is not well located at the top left, most Photoshop filter buttons are normally positioned at the bottom right of most filter palettes.

Try a fully functional trial version of Film Stocks from once downloaded simply run the FilmStocks 1-0 installer which installs the plug in to your stills or video application. The trial version will run for 15 days, after this period you will have to purchase a licence to continue using the plug-in.

Overall verdict

A well designed plug-in that produces many outstanding effects with ease and also offers the ability to customise existing presets or for creating your own from scratch. The ideal tool for the photographer who mourns the death of film.

Price $95

Highly recommended.

Digital Film Tools for video

The video version works in exactly the same way as the image editing plug-in does, all that has been said before will apply for this version too.

So why an extra section to this review?

Digital Film Tools have a video version of the same plug, this works with Adobe Premiere, After Effects, Apple Final Cut Pro, Final Cut Pro x, Avid and Quantel . Each of the 288 film Stock looks are on the whole excellent, even if the majority lend themselves to a stills photographer rather than a movie maker. To apply the filter just simply drag and drop the effect onto a clip on the timeline, a long list of numeric settings appear in the host applications effect controls panel. Now you have the option to work your way through each setting or you can click on the Setup button to open the Film Stocks interface, which is near identical to the one for Photo editing, albeit with a few omissions such as Masks. Take Snapshot, Layers and Magnifier. I have used the graphical interface for this review.

Premier will display effects as numbers

The full Film Stocks view is an easier interface to work with

Looking at the categories, I can see some of the Black & White film presets as being useful, although I can’t remember Ilford FP4 as being a movie film stock, or for that matter Kodachrome 25, nevertheless these film looks will work well on a video clip. The Historical presents and cross processing effects will make interesting viewing in a movie sequence and should provide the user with a good starting point for creating some unique looks. Most of the other presents are a variation on colours or curves to simulate movie stock or stills film. A skilled operator could replicate many of the looks, by using many of the excellent colour correction tools in Premiere or After Effects. However, Digital Film Tools have researched and recreated these 288 looks is a single package which would take a skilled operator many hours to create a similar look from scratch.

When you launch the plugin you are presented with the Film Stocks colourful interface and a single frame from your clip, the film looks are applied using this frame as your reference. The frame is the current frame where the playhead is parked on the timeline when you apply the filter.  From here you can apply any of the filters which will give you an instant update. I would have liked to see the effect applied to the entire selected clip as a movie preview, but you can make an accurate judgement from a single frame.  Once you have applied the filter you are taken back into the editing application and the file will have a red line above it, indicating it needs to be rendered for smooth preview playback. For an entire short movie this can be a time consuming process, I applied an overall look to a 45 minute film and it took 2 hours 48 minutes to render. However, in reality you may only want to apply a movie look to a short clip, and then the render time is more than acceptable.  I am using a computer with 16gb of RAM and a i7 2600k CPU, which is not slow by any means. Applying a similar effect using the colour correction tools in Premiere with the Mercury Playback Engine and the render was instant, but then that doesn’t take into account the amount of time it would take you to work out all the colour permutations in order to achieve a given film look.. The key advantage Film Stocks has, is that all the settings are predefined for you.

Red bar indicates clip has to be rendered

Having previously stated that some of the Historical and Faded presets produced interesting effects, I would have liked the inclusion of some old film effects, i.e. flicker, jumped frames, damaged and scratched artefacts which randomly appear during old movie clips, old TV screens, out of register colours, light leaks, glimpses of sprocket holes,  or even some crackling sound effects. I can think of plenty more effects that could be useful. However, the package is clearly labled as Flim Stocks and as such it delivers an excellent set of film looks.

Overall conclusion on the Film Stocks version for video

The Film Stocks plugin from Digital Film Tools provides some useful video/ film looks which will look great in any video production. The video version is just over double the price of the photo version and yet not offering any more features, in fact a few have been taken out. Compared to other similar products on the market it does present good value. However, I am not convinced why basically the same product  as Film Stocks for Photo should cost $100 more – I know new code has to be written to make it work with video, but the underlying colour permutations are the same.

Price $195