Have you ever lost track of your plug-ins?
I certainly have. Especially back in my days as an editor, I collected plug-ins like Jay Leno collects cars.
If a plug-in solved a workflow problem I was having – it was mine.
If a plug-in gave me a fresh new Look – it was mine.
If a plug-in shaved 20 minutes off some repetitive task – it was mine.
And all those installers I collected? Those were saved off on several external hard drives for extra safety (since each installer represents a monetary investment I don’t want to lose with the next hard drive crash).
But there was one big problem that blossomed into a serious headache…
The problem is keeping all those plug-ins up-to-date!
After a few years, reinstalling plug-ins (after OS reinstalls) wasn’t the problem… it was going around, collecting all the updaters that became the true headache.
Finally, I solved the problem.
I stopped installing plug-ins. They only got installed when I needed them.
What a waste of sunk investments.
A perfect example is my favorite of all the plug-in families…
Red Giant Software: Awesome Solutions
I think I’ve owned almost every version, revision, and rebranding of the original Magic Bullet – designed to emulate the ’24p Look’ with interlaced source footage (it was ALL the rage in the early 2000s).
Magic Bullet Looks, Magic Bullet Editors Edition, Magic Bullet Suite
And then there was Colorista, Colorista II (which I did a training series on), DeNoiser and DeNoiser II.
Red Giant also started buying out plug-in packages I was using back when I was somewhat skillful on After Effects, including Knoll Light Factory, the Trapcode family of plug-ins, Composite Wizard, Primatte
Red Giant Software: An Updating Mess
Keeping up with new versions truly became a nightmare. To the point where I was discouraged from keeping my licenses up to date and plug-ins current.
Easier? Only update when I really needed a plug-in.
And that meant lots of missed opportunities for using those tools, I’m sure.
Introducing Red Giant Link
Red Giant Software finally caught on and came up with a good solution: Red Giant Link.
I stumbled on Red Giant Link when installing their new Universe package.
During the install process, Red Giant Link asks you to add any licenses you own of Red Giant plug-ins – and then keeps track of when they need to be upgraded, alerting you.
In this video Insight, I’ll give you a quick overview of Red Giant Link and how it finally grapples with the mess of their own success in helping us keep track of our investments. But this Insight is also an overview of a new series I’ll be doing.
Red Giant Color Tools: The Series
Over the next two months, I’m going to release Insights on Red Giant’s color tools. My goal is to help you evaluate how they work and develop game plans for how to work with them most efficiently.
And not only can Red Giant Link help us manage the complexity of keeping their ecosystem up-to-date – they’ve also announced their Universe Suite will be available in DaVinci Resolve as an OpenFX plugin. So hopefully this series will serve double-duty for those of you who color correct primarily in an NLE and those who grade in DaVinci Resolve.
Tease: The Desert Island Color Correction Challenge
As part of this series, I’ll tease you with the concept of the Desert Island Color Correction Challenge, which I’ll be tackling in a whole slew of upcoming Insights.
Do you have a Red Giant Software workflow issue you’d like me to tackle?
That’s why we have the comments! Share your questions and I’ll do my best to work them into this series.