Thomson and FilmLight to Showcase Software Grading Control for Spirit at NAB

At the National Association of Broadcasters Convention in Las Vegas, Thomson Grass Valley and FilmLight will conduct a groundbreaking demonstration in which FilmLight’s Baselight colour grading system will control a Thomson Grass Valley Spirit as a telecine controller. It will mark the first time ever that a software-based colour corrector will fully control a telecine system.

The demonstration, which will be seen on the Thomson Grass Valley booth (SL2120), will involve a Baselight HD connected to a Spirit 4K scanner. However the technology, incorporated into version 3.3 of FilmLight’s Baselight software, can be employed with any Baselight system and with any model of the Thomson Spirit product line, including Spirit HD, Spirit 2K, Spirit 4K, the Shadow telecine and the classic Spirit DataCine.

“This demonstration is the result of a breakthrough effort by Thomson Grass Valley and FilmLight and is a moment of great significance for the post-production industry,” stated FilmLight Director Steve Chapman. “It marks the point when software-based colour grading has not only caught up to, but in fact surpassed, hardware-based grading. It shows that the future belongs to software solutions exemplified by Baselight.”

The new technology allows Baselight, via its Blackboard control panel, to emulate a hardware grading system in a traditional linear workflow, and to perform such functions as primary and secondary colour correction, grain management or other film stock dependant settings – all performed in the Spirit scanner using the Spirit’s industry-renowned signal processing. It also gives Baselight the ability to control Spirit for ingest while operating in a nonlinear environment. Hybrid modes of operation are also possible.

“Today’s post-production industry is changing rapidly, and a telecine or film scanner has to integrate perfectly into the wider workflow to make it a productive and profitable workhorse,” added Jeff Rosica, senior vice president of Thomson’s Broadcast & Professional Solutions business unit. “By integrating our products with other equipment rather than demanding further investments, we are helping our customers innovate and stay competitive.”

The development has broad implications for all post production workflows that include a colour grading component, but it promises to have a particularly strong impact on post for high-end commercials.

At NAB 2008 Thomson will have on show the 100th new generation Spirit since its introduction in 2004 as the successor for the classic Spirit DataCine. The co-operation with FilmLight and its Baselight colour corrector is a result of continuing development to ensure that the Spirit family can cover the whole range of market requirements to deliver film images to any source at any time in the fastest way possible.

Contact – Deepa Parbhoo ([email protected]) +44 20 7292 0400

About Thomson

Thomson (Euronext Paris: 18453; NYSE: TMS) provides technology, services, and systems to help its Media & Entertainment clients – content creators, content distributors and users of its technology – realize their business goals and optimize their performance in a rapidly changing technology environment. The Group is the preferred partner to the Media & Entertainment Industries through its Technicolor, Grass Valley, RCA, and Thomson brands. For more information:

For information about Grass Valley products from Thomson please visit

Media Relations:

Denise Williams
Phone: (503) 526-8160
Fax: (503) 526-8109
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Suzanne Griffiths
Phone: +44 (0) 1252 727 313
Fax: +44(0)1252 727 314
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