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DPX vs ProRes4444 for VFX

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Jason Morehouse
DPX vs ProRes4444 for VFX
on Jun 16, 2020 at 1:41:12 pm

I asked a similar question in the Arri section since the film was shot in the Alexa Mini LF. But since this question pertains to whether ProRes4444 or DPX is better for VFX, I'll give it a try here.

Basically, I'm in the VFX stage on my short film and my colorist and VFX artist told me that ProRes4444 would be fine for our workflow.

But is it really fine not using DPX since the codec I used while shooting was ProRes4444? I normally use DPX but the colorist is telling me that it's an unnecessary upgrade.

Also, can I export the final film in Adobe Premiere as ProRes4444 after receiving the color corrected footage? A friend told me I should use After Effects and export it there for 32 bpc. To be honest, I have no idea what he means since I'm not doing any compositing work.

Sorry if these are dumb questions. I'm not so tech savy, so any insight would be greatly appreciated.


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Tero Ahlfors
Re: DPX vs ProRes4444 for VFX
on Jun 16, 2020 at 1:48:48 pm

Do you want to use a bunch of extra space and not be able to look stuff in realtime?
If the answer is yes then use DPX.

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Jason Morehouse
Re: DPX vs ProRes4444 for VFX
on Jun 16, 2020 at 2:28:08 pm

It's funny I asked a similar question years ago and you gave me a similar answer. Lol. Thanks for the insight.

But the second part of the question... Is there a difference in quality exporting ProRes4444 files from AE vs premiere? I wanted to do some simple Twixtor slow motion. Does the 32 bpc matter for something like this?

Thanks again.

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Eric Santiago
Re: DPX vs ProRes4444 for VFX
on Jun 16, 2020 at 2:35:40 pm

To me its the container.
Some have asked for ProRes444 but at times it's a pain due to sizes and possibly corrupt files.
With DPX, its the old school e.g. SGI, TGA, etc... mentality to be always in sequential file workflow.
Quality-wise, I can't explain that since I've had soup to nuts with both options.

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Chris Wright
Re: DPX vs ProRes4444 for VFX
on Jun 25, 2020 at 12:39:34 am

if you're doing effects, i'd go with at least prores 444 XQ. the higher bitrate will hold composites better than the regular 444. and who uses dpx anymore? it got replaced by EXR like 10 years ago!
no composites are rendered out in 32bpc unless you need to store stuff you can't even see. but compositing in 32bpc is a good idea for not having to dither pixels in the engine before final output.
some places use ACES in their workflow or turn off color management altogether.

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