Monthly Archives: October 2009

Plug-In Q&A: Tim Dashwood, Stereo3D Toolbox

Originally published in Studio Daily Oct 30, 2009.
by Beth Marchant

Looking to get into 3D production but afraid of what it might cost you—both literally and on the clock? Stereo3D Toolbox, a new FxFactory mastering plug-in for Final Cut Pro, Motion and After Effects, aims to help users demux and demystify 3D formats and composite complex shots within the familiar apps they already know. DP Tim Dashwood, founder of Dashwood Cinema Solutions and the tool’s creator, explains why he got into the plug-in business and how much of this stuff you can easily handle inside FCP, AE and Motion.

You’re a cinematographer by trade and not a programmer. Why did you want to create a 3D plug-in?
I come from the independent world where a lot of the problem solving is just, ‘do it yourself and find a solution.’ This was one of those situations. I had tried some other products out there. One, in particular, was a little too expensive for what I was looking to do at the moment. If the budgets were to come through, that would be fine. But I knew I needed something under $1,000, and definitely less than the price of Final Cut Pro itself. I thought, ‘There must also be other people out there looking for something similar.’ The Final Cut Pro suite ships with no stereoscopic support yet. Avid does have limited stereoscopic support, and then the higher-end systems, like the Quantel Pablo, for example, has stereoscopic support. A lot of times those more expensive systems are out of the reach of independent-sized budgets, from music video production to hobbyists. Up until the point of me designing this plug-in, everything had to be done manually, as far as lining up your left eye and your right eye. It was just a whole lot of work. So I sat down one day, and said, ‘You know what? There must be an easier way.’

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