"The Matrix Reloaded" -- Rendered with Macs, PCs?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by City of Glass, Apr 28, 2003.

  1. City of Glass macrumors member

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    #1
    Hello all,

    I've been wondering -- what computer systems did John Gaeta use to render the hotly anticipated Matrix sequel's special effects?

    Once I heard "all of the graphics" in the last Star Wars film were done with a concatenation of processor-linked Dell Dimension 2800s . . . what if Gaeta used Macs? Plausible? Feasible?

    I'm guessing, for cost issues and software availability/compatibility, Macs were not used . . . but perhaps they were, and I don't know it. In any case, if one of you, out there, has significant information regarding this -- please, post it liberally here.


    C.o.G.
     
  2. cb911 macrumors 601

    cb911

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    #2
    i'm always interested in that sort of stuff as well. if i had some time i would look for some info myself... but since i don't i'd be very appreciative if someone else could post some info.:p :)
     
  3. irmongoose macrumors 68030

    irmongoose

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  4. Jaykay macrumors 6502a

    Jaykay

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    #4
    Thats a pity, but i know that all the compositing for the lord of the rings was done on a mac.
     
  5. Jaykay macrumors 6502a

    Jaykay

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  6. Mr Jobs macrumors regular

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    #6
    i dont think loard of the rings were done on macs, i think you've mistken that for the compositing being done on 'Shake'
     
  7. PaisanoMan macrumors member

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    Jan 26, 2003
    #7
    I think you're correct -- I remember reading that article and not seeing a single instance of the word 'Mac'.

    For the effects industry, the price/performance of Macs are probably worse than SGIs (ouch). Whether they use IRIX, Windows, or even Mac boxes for the artists, studios are finding that throwing lots of cheap, easily replaceable, openly configurable, off-the-shelf PC hardware combined with the cheap (free), customizable Linux operating system is a no-brainer for maximum bang-for-buck.

    SGI has some incredibly powerful systems that utilize specialized shared memory buses and other advanced technology, but in this case, sheer quantity can more than bridge that gap. (Keep in mind that some modern x86 hardware is very high quality, something Mac bigots often forget.) Pixar, ILM, Disney, and countless others are utilizing on Linux/x86 as their workstation and/or renderfarm solution, but unfortunately, there are no studios (that I know of) who use Macs as an integral part of their production pipeline, probably because of the relatively expensive and proprietary nature of today's Macs.
     
  8. Eniregnat macrumors 68000

    Eniregnat

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    #8
    As far as LOTR a number of systems were use, both Mac and PC, with the majority of the post production being done on an Avid system. It seems that every 3d software company had something to do with StarWars and almost every one had something to do with LOTR. As far as the Matrix, I don't know, but it will be intersiting fishing about for the info.

    This is a little old, but I managed to collect some partial credits that software companies claim. Some of their sites then give detales as to what hardware was used.

    After a little serching, I now find that I am looking for any Mac refrence in regards to the Matrix.
     
  9. yzedf macrumors 65816

    yzedf

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  10. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

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    #10
    No studios that you know of that use Macs? Allow me to separate rendered from editing for a moment here. The Blair Witch Project and Bamboozled were both shot on DV and edited on Macs. SGI produces wonderful hardware. It is the vendor of choice for graphics-intensive computation. However, SGI enters into contracts with its users such as ILM to publicize SGI exclusively. However, most of the work prior to the rendering stage is actually done on Macs.

    "proprietary nature of today's Macs"? You seem hopelessly stuck in '80s. Every heard of Darwin? At any rate, the reason why the Mac is so important to the film studios is that so much work can be done using off-the-shelf software. Much of the software run on SGI machines are custom applications written specifically for the job at hand.
     
  11. cb911 macrumors 601

    cb911

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    #11
    yeah, PC's are heaps cheaper for render farms etc, so i should have guessed that they would be used on the Matrix.

    anyway, interesting links.:)
     
  12. the_wallcrawler macrumors regular

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    #12
    Re: "The Matrix Reloaded" -- Rendered with Macs, PCs?

    if i remember correctly, in the extra stuff on the DVD of episode 1, you see some people working on macs....
     
  13. h'biki macrumors regular

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    #13
    Since Apple's acquisition of Shake, a few effects houses over here are moving to a mixed OS X/Linux environments. They use Linux clusters as the renderfarm, with OS X as the front end for the compositor. I believe there are a number of OS X systems working on LOTR in just this capacity.

    I wouldn't be surprised if that trend continues.

    OS X is a much friendly creative environment to work in and the combination of FCP4, Shake and the AJA and Blackmagic SDI cards, make it a perfect platform for the user end of post.

    Linux is cheap and powerful. The major GUIs are ok, but they are inconsistent, and I've yet to see a really good editing package for Linux.

    In answer to the original question... if they used Macs to render Matrix 2 then we'll probably be waiting until May 15 2004 to see it. (Sad but true)
     
  14. h'biki macrumors regular

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    #14
    (Replies to self)

    That, and the cost difference between a linux/windows GUI licence for Shake (to allow you to like, composite and not just render) and the OS X Shake GUI licence pays for the cost of Apple hardware.

    A really brilliant strategic move on Apple's part. They know they'll never be able to compete price/performance wise with a linux cluster running on intel CPUs... but they can compete with linux or window front end boxes. Especially when you sell the mac version for half the price. (Cross grading to Macs and doubling your licences means lots to post houses).
     
  15. merman637 macrumors member

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    Oklahoma City, Ok
    #15
    Matrix 2000

    Am i the only one that noticed that the link given above was for the matrix not "reloaded?" Just thought that was odd...
     
  16. sturm375 macrumors 6502

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    #16
    Re: Matrix 2000

    Nope. I noticed it too. Anybody know what was used to make the newest, soon to be released, Matrix movie?
     
  17. MeanE macrumors newbie

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    Mar 25, 2003
    #17
    That's just it. It does not make any sense to make a render farm out of Macs (slower and more expensive hardware..and with linux no software fees), but for the frontend the Macs can be used for video editing and the such.
     
  18. h'biki macrumors regular

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    #18
    Re: Re: Matrix 2000

    Well, the thing is, there isn't just one company who does all the visual effects for the Matrix moves. They have multiple vendors (as the term is). A friend of mines (now ex) boyfriend was doing the digital asset management for Matrix 2 and 3 and I think he mentioned something like 50 vendors in total. But I could be remembering wrong, cause it seems a mighty high number.

    Either way, its really hard to work these things out.

    (I do know that Animal Logic which did some work on M2... but are doing none on M3... use Dell workstations and clusters running linux and shake)
     
  19. jadariv macrumors regular

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    Sep 11, 2002
    #19
    I've done effects on a lot of B movies and music videos, and i am proud to say that i used my macs on all of them.

    Maybe if i went pc i could score a Matrix job...hmm...not worth it.
     

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