ARRI is announcing support for the new Apple ProRes 4444 XQ, the highest-quality version of ProRes to date, which will be available in the next Software Update Packet for ALEXA cameras.
"Working with ProRes has been great for our customers," says Marc Shipman-Mueller, ARRI's Product Manager for Camera Systems. "Up until now, the ProRes 4444 330 Mb/s version has been the workhorse of professional filmmakers using the ALEXA. ProRes 4444 XQ has a higher target data rate of 500 Mb/s that makes it the ideal choice for postproduction that requires visual effects processing or extreme color grading."
"ProRes 4444 XQ is a fantastic choice for high-end mastering and archiving," says Henning Rädlein, ARRI's Head of Digital Workflow Solutions. "ProRes 4444 XQ offers 12-bit RGB encoding with a low compression ratio of 1:4.5 that maintains the superior tonal range of Log C, while providing the speed, ease of use and familiarity of ProRes. The addition of ProRes 4444 XQ continues the ALEXA tradition of letting you choose the recording format that best matches your post workflow, distribution format, and budget."
Final Cut Pro version 10.1.2 fully supports ProRes 4444 XQ for editing, compositing, rendering, and exporting. ARRI ALEXA XT cameras and ALEXA Classic cameras with the XR Module will gain ProRes 4444 XQ capability with ARRI's Software Update Packet SUP 10, which is scheduled for an open beta in July and a final release in August. ALEXA XR/XT cameras will support ProRes 4444 XQ in both HD and 2K resolutions. The ALEXA XR/XT cameras will be the world's first cameras capable of encoding ProRes 4444 XQ.
ProRes Recording in ALEXA
The following table shows the ProRes versions available with SUP 10 in ALEXA XT cameras and ALEXA Classic cameras with an XR Module upgrade. Data rates are calculated for 29.97 fps.
ProRes 4444 XQ
The highest-quality version of ProRes with a very high data rate to preserve the detail in high-dynamic-range imagery. ProRes 4444 XQ preserves dynamic ranges several times greater than the dynamic range of Rec. 709 imagery. Like standard ProRes 4444, this version supports up to 12 bits per image channel. ProRes 4444 XQ features a target data rate of approximately 500 Mb/s for 4:4:4 sources at 1920 x 1080.
A high-quality version of ProRes. This version features full-resolution, mastering-quality 4:4:4 RGB color. It also features a remarkably low data rate compared to uncompressed 4:4:4 HD, with a target data rate of approximately 330 Mb/s for 4:4:4 sources at 1920 x 1080.
ProRes 422 HQ
A higher data rate version of ProRes 422 that preserves visual quality at the same high level as ProRes 4444, but with 4:2:2 color subsampling. This version supports full-width, 4:2:2 video at 10-bit pixel depths, while remaining visually lossless through many generations of decoding and re-encoding. The target data rate of ProRes 422 HQ is approximately 220 Mb/s at 1920 x 1080.
A high-quality codec offering nearly all the benefits of ProRes 422 HQ, but at 66 percent of the data rate for even better multistream, real-time editing performance. The target data rate of ProRes 422 is approximately 147 Mb/s at 1920 x 1080.