Boris FX ships Mocha Pro, Continuum and Sapphire 2020
Originally posted on 5 September 2019. Scroll down for news of the commercial releases.
Boris FX has unveiled Mocha Pro 2020, the next version of its planar tracking software, plus Sapphire 2020 and Continuum 2020, the next versions of its effects plugins for compositing and editing apps.
The releases add support for key colour management standard OpenColorIO in Mocha Pro and Sapphire, with support in Continuum “in development”.
In addition, Mocha Pro gets a new Mega Plate module for extracting larger-than-raster background images from moving footage, plus an Area Brush for defining tracking search areas.
All of the products will be on show at IBC 2019.
Mocha Pro 2020: new background plate extraction feature, OpenColorIO support
Mocha Pro 2020 includes a couple of interesting features: notably Mega Plate.
The system, described by Boris FX as “unique”, extracts a composite background plate from moving footage, making it possible to generate a clean plate larger than the visible area of any individual frame.
Sadly, there doesn’t seem to be a demo video of it in action yet, but the workflow has obvious potential for set extension work and for repositioning footage.
Updated 7 October 2019: Boris FX has now released a feature highlights video for Mocha Pro 2020, embedded at the top of the story. You can see Mega Plate at 00:30.
Other changes include a more rapid brush-based workflow for defining tracking search areas, in the shape of Area Brush, a new interactive spline tool with “gestural, paint-like functionality”.
It can also be used to define roto shapes, with Mocha Pro converting paint areas to roto splines.
The update also introduces support for OpenColorIO, and for open-source multimedia playback framework GStreamer, the latter as a replacement for QuickTime, which Apple deprecated on Windows in 2016.
Continuum 2020: new effects and transitions
Continuum 2020 gets new effects, including BCC_ReflectImage, for projecting reflections of an object into polished surfaces; and BCC_CastShadow, for throwing shadows behind or in front of an object.
There is also a new effect based on Mocha Pro’s corner pin functionality, intended as a simple way to replace billboards or computer and phone screens in footage; and BCC_PowerPin, for distorting and undistorting footage, which presumably works in a similar way to After Effects’ CC Power Pin effect.
Updated 29 October 2019: Continuum 2020 is shipping. Above, we’ve embedded the overview video, which shows the new tools. The corner pin and power pin features are now integrated into a single effect.
As well as the features announced originally, the update adds a set of six new transitions, new templates for titling tool Title Studio, and the option to share Continuum presets via networked drives.
Particle Illusion, the 2D particle effects tool that Boris FX ‘rebooted‘ last year, gets a number of workflow improvements, including better thumbnail previews, tagging and filtering options for particle emitters.
The release also integrates Mocha Pro’s Area Brush tool into Continuum.
Sapphire 2020: OpenColorIO support, parameter-driven tracking, new lens whacking effect
Sapphire 2020 also gets support for OpenColorIO in all of its 270-plus effects, plus parameter-driven tracking driven by the Mocha engine on “many effects”.
New effects include S_FreeLens, a lens whacking effect mimicking the result of shooting through a detached camera lens to create aesthetically pleasing lens flares, light leaks and tilt-shift focus.
Updated 21 November 2019: Sapphire 2020 is shipping. As well as the features listed above, the update adds 16 new readymade lens flare effects, and seven presets for Sapphire Builder.
Users can also now toggle or wipe between original source footage and filtered output in the Preset Browser to preview the effects of changes, or show the two versions side by side.
As with Continuum, the Area Brush tool from Mocha Pro has been integrated into Sapphire.
In separate news, Boris FX has discontinued Sapphire Sparks for Autodesk Flame: from Sapphire 2020 onwards, all releases for Flame will be in the form of Sapphire OFX plugins.
Pricing and system requirements
Mocha Pro 2020, Continuum 2020 and Sapphire 2020 are available now.
Each application is currently priced according to which host platform you buy it for: there are typically separate prices for Adobe, Apple, Avid, Autodesk, OFX tools and/or multiple hosts.
Mocha Pro costs from $695 to $1,495. Continuum costs from $695 to $1,995. Sapphire costs from $1,695 to $2,795. You can check which versions of the host apps are compatible here.