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Generating DPX from Color for Post House Grade

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Daniel Katz
Generating DPX from Color for Post House Grade
on Apr 28, 2010 at 11:46:11 pm

Please forgive me if this has been answered somewhere else on this forum. I recently shot a couple of 30 second spots for a production company on the Red. The editor cut the spots with the Red M-proxies.
The producers are keen to do a high end grade probably at Company 3 in NY. I am pretty sure Company 3's preference for material is in the DPX file format. I have never organized a color correct from Red footage ( especially proxies) , through Final Cut and then Color for a DPX output before to be handed off for a color grade. Has anyone overseen a similar workflow that could enlighten me on the pitfalls that one can face.
I'm assuming that once the timeline is locked I can send to Color direct from Final Cut Studio 3, from Color I can render and output the necessary DPX files and use the gather media option to contain these in one single folder? Moreover....
Is it customary for the house to perform a marriage with the Wav sound to provide us with a mov file for final output flexibility? Or more fundamentally; what format should we come away from the grade with to provide the Production company with the most flexibility for broadcast and web distribution;bearing in mind they operate with Final Cut Studio and Color primarily and don't really have experience generating or working with DPX files or third party software like Gluetools.
Many thanks in advance


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Noah Kadner
Re: Generating DPX from Color for Post House Grade
on Apr 29, 2010 at 12:08:46 am

I'm 100% certain a company as high-end as Company 3 has several ways to extract RAW directly from R3D files. Are you sure they wouldn't prefer that rather than DPXs with the LUTs, gamma/color space all baked in? Also- chances are they will have nothing to do with the sound unless they're doing the outputs to tape as well (or whatever the final output is).

Noah

Check out my book: RED: The Ultimate Guide to Using the Revolutionary Camera!
Unlock the secrets of 24p, HD and Final Cut Studio with Call Box Training. Featuring the Sony EX1 Guidebook, Panasonic HVX200, Canon EOS 5D Mark II and Canon 7D.
Watch Formosa- My indie movie shot with the SDX900 and finished with Final Cut Studio.


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Daniel Katz
Re: Generating DPX from Color for Post House Grade
on Apr 29, 2010 at 12:31:20 am

Thank you for your quick response Noah. The last correspondence I had with Company 3 they indicated that their preference was for DPX files. Furthermore, now that the edit has been locked, is it possible to generate the final timeline that utilizes R3D's from final cut. I didn't know that it was possible to output a R3D based timeline for native grading.

Thanks again

Daniel Katz



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Doug Beal
Re: Generating DPX from Color for Post House Grade
on Apr 29, 2010 at 1:15:09 pm

We use an Assimilate scratch system here. We grade using the R3D files directly. If the edit is locked we generate an EDL from FCP along with a ref movie and conform from there. The same procedure would be followed whether the edit was done on whatever system. That is our process given the tools we work with.
Whoever is handling the grade will tell you what they expect from you for your session. I personally think grading from the raw files would produce a better result than grading from DPX's generated from color or any other source. One would have to assume if you have generated the DPXs that your monitoring is accurate.
As far as audio is concerned, the marriage takes place anywhere in the chain once picture is locked, and is dependent on deliverables. typically this would come from whoever is doing the final mix. Often there will be a Stereo or surround master and a split track master. If the spot is a one time, time sensitive release then perhaps a stereo master is all that will be required. If it may be modified for further use over time than a split track submaster would be handy for generating updates so a new VO, a more somber or upbeat track may be substituted a 60 can be a 30 or 15. prepping for that will save a complete redo later. You can't have too many elements.

Doug Beal
Editor / Engineer
Rock Creative Images
Nashville TN


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Noah Kadner
Re: Generating DPX from Color for Post House Grade
on Apr 30, 2010 at 1:32:37 am

Yeah Company 3 is tops and I'm a little surprised to hear they have no facility to handle native RED. I'd check in with them really carefully on that. Otherwise you can derive DPX files via the Clipfinder/Color workflow. But again you need to get the LUT from C3 and all that stuff if they are really insisting on 'flattened' RED footage instead of RAW.

Noah

Check out my book: RED: The Ultimate Guide to Using the Revolutionary Camera!
Unlock the secrets of 24p, HD and Final Cut Studio with Call Box Training. Featuring the Sony EX1 Guidebook, Panasonic HVX200, Canon EOS 5D Mark II and Canon 7D.
Watch Formosa- My indie movie shot with the SDX900 and finished with Final Cut Studio.


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