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Alexa ProRes 4444 to Avid to DPX - ...?

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Martin Zaharinov
Alexa ProRes 4444 to Avid to DPX - ...?
on Jul 20, 2011 at 11:07:01 pm

Hello there,

This is my 1st time posting to creative cow although I have been coming to this website for almost a year now. I've found a number of extremely helpful threads and tips and I really appreciate everyone's time and help in fostering the flow of information and shedding light on complex issues. This place offers by far the nicest and most-intelligent help and conversations on post production.

Anyway I have a number of questions of my own regarding the Arri Alexa and ProRes 4444 12-bit footage.

We filmed a few green screen commercial spots on the Alexa in the specs above (Log-C). We have a very tight turn around and I am already thinking about deliveries for the VFX house. We are doing the offline editing in Avid MC 5.03 at DNxHD 115. The idea is to export EDLs when we lock and then deliver a conformed DPX sequence to the VFX house since that is what they asked for. I am pretty new to this so in a nutshell I have no idea how to make this happen (I come from a strictly editing background and am now a post manager so im rediscovering a whole new world and am still learning a lot).

My questions are:

1. When we have locked and I have an EDL of the sequence - how do I go about creating a DPX conform? What software do I use? I have access to Nuke and Smoke (I was told by a buddy to do it in Nuke) but I've never used either - can this be done in AE or dare I say clipfinder? And if yes then how (if this is lengthy then a quick overview/point in the right direction will do)?

2. I have not run LUTs on the footage - is that a problem? I did the DIT for the shoot as we had to be cutting on set and trying to keep up with camera. It was the 1st time that I had heard of LUTs (don't laugh - im new to this), but I did my research (mostly thanks to creative cow) and downloaded Alexicc, followed the instructions to the T but the LUTs that came out were all wrong - the footage looked more like a japanese anime or a 5D footage with a boris continuum sketch effect added to it. So due to time restraints I couldn't troubleshoot and just started cutting in Avid with a color corrected layer over the footage.

3. Regardless of what software I will use for this - what do I need to get out of Avid? Just an EDL, the RAW footage handy and a reference .mov to proof or am I missing something?

Thanks guys in advance for all of your help with this! Im sorry I have to resort to a long post, but after a couple of days of researching this and reading threads (most of them on this site) I couldn't wrap my head around it and find the answers I needed.

Cheers,
Martin


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jamie parry
Re: Alexa ProRes 4444 to Avid to DPX - ...?
on Jul 21, 2011 at 4:09:49 pm

the demo version of alexicc that you get does a weird LUT on the image just so you can examine the workflow....but not use the footage obviously :-)
the real version has a LUT by Steve Shaw which looks great.
post here how i can get a short,one second clip from you, i'll do a (real) alexicc pass on it and send you that file back if you like...
options are always good!
jamie (alexicc person)


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gary adcock
Re: Alexa ProRes 4444 to Avid to DPX - ...?
on Jul 22, 2011 at 3:58:08 pm

[Martin Zaharinov] "3. Regardless of what software I will use for this - what do I need to get out of Avid? Just an EDL, the RAW footage handy and a reference .mov to proof or am I missing something?"

Martin,

this is one of those times that you should be asking the people you are working with, most would prefer the camera original material over any conversion. Just remember to define what you want returned to you.

Most VFX house can handle anything you give them, so why add a layer of complexity to your project. Alexa footage as ProRes is fairly common.

Do not apply LUT's to footage being given to someone else for VFX, ungraded footage allows them the most latitude, however DO give them a guideline of your final color to match VFX too.

One note on the Alexicc workflow- I have not ever been happy with the results, the releases always seem to be behind the camera software enough to be problematic for me.

FYI Alexa Camera LUTs are only supported starting with the V4 software release (I have been doing camera looks on Alexa for a NBC Episodic TV series all week)

gary adcock
Studio37

Post and Production Workflow Consultant
Production and Post Stereographer
Chicago, IL

http://blogs.creativecow.net/24640



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gary adcock
Re: Alexa ProRes 4444 to Avid to DPX - ...CORRECTION
on Jul 22, 2011 at 4:06:12 pm

[gary adcock] "One note on the Alexicc workflow- I have not ever been happy with the results, the releases always seem to be behind the camera software enough to be problematic for me. "


I apologize to Steve Shaw for my error here, LightIllisions makes some of the best LUT software available and my response poorly phrased and not correct nor my experiance with their products.

I was trying to say:
One note on the Alexa LUT workflow- I have not ever been happy with the results, camera software releases always seem to be lacking and Arri's LUT can be problematic if you are not matching the correct camera software version.


gary

gary adcock
Studio37

Post and Production Workflow Consultant
Production and Post Stereographer
Chicago, IL

http://blogs.creativecow.net/24640



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Martin Zaharinov
Re: Alexa ProRes 4444 to Avid to DPX - ...CORRECTION
on Jul 22, 2011 at 9:56:26 pm

Jamie & Gary,

Thanks for your responses and help. Jamie I wish I could send you a second of footage but we can't release any information whatsoever about the footage/project until the commercials are up and unfortunately whenever the camera was rolling you could see the set and its a set that nobody in the world (unless you lived in a cave) can mistakeā€¦ I didn't realize that it was not a full trial of Alexicc that was available, because it said 'don't buy unless you're sure this works for you' i assumed wrong.

Gary, I am trying to get more info from the VFX house and seeing whether I can deliver an EDL & RAW Footage only (thanks for your advice). Say, however, I did have to deliver a conformed DPX for whatever reason - any quick pointers on how to make that happen/get started?

Thanks,
Martin


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gary adcock
Re: Alexa ProRes 4444 to Avid to DPX - ...CORRECTION
on Jul 25, 2011 at 3:14:04 pm

[Martin Zaharinov] ", I did have to deliver a conformed DPX for whatever reason - any quick pointers on how to make that happen/get started?"



I would go with Nuke for the DPX creation. AE is not always reliable in outputting of DPX files.

have you looked into metafuse for the data handling,

gary adcock
Studio37

Post and Production Workflow Consultant
Production and Post Stereographer
Chicago, IL

http://blogs.creativecow.net/24640



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jamie parry
Re: Alexa ProRes 4444 to Avid to DPX - ...CORRECTION
on Aug 2, 2011 at 3:42:11 pm

No worries Martin.
although Manchester,England is quite cave-like!

I don't think alexicc is right for an FX workflow anyway (as Gary has pointed out)
however Nuke is good and Resolve Lite is now out and free!
Resolve Lite will let you take in prores444 and output DPX sequences.
No audio but that's OK for you right?

Alexicc is meant for editorial type people.
j


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