Autodesk ships Flame 2021.2 | CG Channel
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Autodesk ships Flame 2021.2

Wednesday, October 28, 2020 | Written by Jim Thacker

Autodesk has released Flame 2021.2, the next update to its compositing, finishing and effects software, and added a new AI-based salient keyer that automatically generates a matte for every object within a shot.

The update also adds a new search tool that allows nodes to be added to batch, BFX, and action schemes more quickly, and offers a choice of UI layouts with one or two panels.

New Sematic Keyer automatically isolates all objects within a bounding box
The 2021.2 update brings the AI-trained keying functionality added to Flame over the past two years to a logical conclusion.

While previous versions added automated tools for entering the sky, human heads and bodies, and individual parts of the face, the new Salient Keyer works with any object.

Users select the part of a frame and Flame automatically identifies the most obvious object that is in it and then generates an extraction mat for it.

The system works for several foreground objects within a bounding box. The resulting matte can be manually adjusted via controls to expand or erode the edges, or to change the transparency details obtained.

The bounding box can be animated so that moving objects can be extracted from the footage: According to Autodesk, the reformulation gives "amazing results for objects that can be recognized".

Workflow improvements: New node search tool, selection of UI layouts for single and double panels
Workflow improvements include a new search tool that allows users to add nodes to schematics more quickly by entering the first letter or the letters of their name and then selecting appropriate nodes from a list.

It is available in the Batch, Batch FX, Modular Keyer, GMask Tracer, Image and Action schematics.

The update also introduces switchable UI layouts for single and double panels (see figure above), which replace the existing options "Extended left", "Both fields" and "Extended right".

Performance improvements for larger schedules, support for PNG export
Performance improvements include improved interactivity when navigating or cleaning up "larger, more complex timelines," although Autodesk does not quantify the speed boost.

Under CentOS, the machine learning models used by the new AI-based tools are now serialized to the system disk the first time they are used, reducing load times when reused.

Users can now also clear machine learning maps and caches from a clip or timeline segment.

Other changes include the option to export content from Flame as 8-bit or 16-bit PNG files and export Sony XAVC Intra and Long GOP codecs as QuickTime files.

For a full list of minor features and format updates, see the link below.

Prices and availability
Flame 2021.2 is only available for CentOS 7.4 / 7.6 Linux and macOS 10.13-10.14 and macOS 10.15.1+ on a rental basis. Subscriptions are now $ 550 / month or $ 4,415 / year.

For a full list of what's new in Flame 2021.2, check out the online documentation

Tags: Action, AI-based, AI-trained, Autodesk, Batch, Batch FX, Bounding Box, Compositing, Finishing, Flame, Flame 2021.2, GMask Tracer, Isolate Object, Machine Learning, Machine Learning Cache, Modular Keyer, New Features , Node search, object mat, price, salient keyer, search tool, semantic keyer, system requirements, vfx

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