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PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?

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Per Holmes
PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 10:11:17 pm

Hi,

I just got the new Premiere Pro 7.1, and excitedly started testing the CinemaDNG workflow, and I've hit a massive wall. It appears that Premiere Pro uses only part of the latitude of the RAW format, there's apparently no way to change it, and it's apparently suddenly impossible to access the full tonal range of RAW, even with Speedgrade or After Effects.

As an example, I have some footage with burnt out clouds. If I open a DNG image in Photoshop or After Effects, I can edit the exposure upon import, and bring back all the latitude on the clouds. That's the whole point of using RAW.

In Premiere Pro, CinemaDNG seems cropped to video levels, and I can't bring back any information in the highlights. I simply turn down blotchy over-exposed highlights.

If I take the sequence over into SpeedGrade, it's the same. I'm not able to pull any information out of the clouds, only reduce the brightness of already blotchy over-exposed clouds.

If this really is designed this way, what the heck is the point? The ONLY, I feel I can safely repeat, ONLY reason to shoot RAW is to be able to access the full tonal range of the image. But Premiere Pro seems to crop the latitude range to a video range.

But then there's no point in shooting CinemaDNG, and not simply shoot ProRes.

What am I getting wrong? Or what in the world are the designers thinking here, killing the one and the only reason anyone would use RAW in the first place?

Further, it appears that it's not even possible to "upgrade" to full CinemaDNG. If you've imported CinemaDNG in Premiere Pro, the manual says that the clip will be locked to that tonal range, even as you bring it over into SpeedGrade, which I've confirmed.

I can't figure it out. If this is true, CinemaDNG playback is an completely pointless non-feature.

What the heck?

Per


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David McGavran
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 10:24:13 pm

What we are releasing it the initial support and playback of CinemaDNG. We know it is missing the RAW settings. What we did is create a ground up performant playback engine for CinemaDNG that we can continue to develop on. After Effects still has the Camera Raw style plugins.

Cheers
Dave

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
David McGavran, Adobe Systems Incorporated
Senior Engineering Manager Adobe Premiere Pro
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


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Gary Alan
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 10:28:50 pm

ahhhhh, continue to develop. well I guess that explains it all. now we all can go back to where we were and MAYBE someday they will catch up with modern technology.


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Gary Alan
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 10:26:47 pm

This falls along with the question I just posted here earlier. I was hoping to get ACR and adjust dng raw files in PPro. No on so far has an answer and the pre press was all over on how the new update would be able to use DNG. I was importing DNG into PPro before this update. I feel they did some fancy talking/hyping about this new update. I hope Adobe or someone has some better answers and solutions.

Gary


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Per Holmes
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 10:33:32 pm

Hi,

I have to admit that this is a curveball for me. I've actually checked for upgrades 5 times a day since October 15, and suddenly, it's dead on arrival.

The marketing didn't mention anything about this. This is kind of a mega deal-breaker, since the only reason anyone would use RAW in the first place would be to access the full tonal range.

But why have you locked it out completely to access the tonal range? All you'd have to do in SpeedGrade is give the ability to upgrade the clip to non-real-time rendered footage that accesses the full tonal range. I think anyone who uses CinemaDNG would happily pay that non-real-time sacrifice until it one day becomes real-time.

But instead, you've designed it to stay forever locked into the arbitrary video tonal range that Premiere auto-decided on import, with no possibility of changing it, not even in SpeedGrade.

I think this defies logic a little bit. You've done all this amazing work to make CinemaDNG play in real-time, but then you've disabled the one thing that would make anybody use it.

The CinemaDNG workflow is a complete non-starter for me. I'm already done with it. I'm exploring the Ginger workflow, perhaps there's something there. But the 7.1 CinemaDNG workflow I simply can't find anything to use for.

Believe me, I love your software otherwise, I've converted away from Avid MC because Premiere in general is more powerful. But this CinemaDNG workflow is perplexing. I'm way bummed.

Best,

Per


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David McGavran
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 10:44:17 pm

We understand your frustration and are continuing to work hard on this. Getting correctly debaryed GPU accelerated CinemaDNG was quite a success for us. Adding the options is now possible.

Cheers

Dave

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
David McGavran, Adobe Systems Incorporated
Senior Engineering Manager Adobe Premiere Pro
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


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Steve Connor
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 10:45:45 pm

That's bad news, I was looking forward to using PPro to work on our Blackmagic RAW shoots?

Steve Connor

There's nothing we can't argue about on the FCPX COW Forum


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EricBowen
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 10:57:31 pm

Have you looked at just importing to AE for Raw changes and then export to Cineform for Premiere work? You can also just convert to Cineform Raw in the first place.

Eric-ADK
Tech Manager
support@adkvideoediting.com


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Per Holmes
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 11:05:32 pm

Hi,

I have terrible news. I just tested "replace with After Effect Composition", and it doesn't work for CinemaDNG.

This means that there is no way whatsoever to access the RAW tonal range of CinemaDNG imported into Premiere Pro. No way at all.

This blows my mind. I'm not completely convinced that Adobe understands why anyone shoots RAW.

Editing CinemaDNG in Premiere Pro/SpeedGrade is functionally the same as if you had shot the whole thing as ProRes to begin with.

Yikes. Well, CinemaDNG in 7.1 is dead and buried. Does anybody have experience with the Ginger workflow?

Per


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Gary Alan
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Nov 1, 2013 at 11:08:13 pm

Per, does this help? I have not watched it yet.
Gary
http://vimeo.com/54754773


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Gary Alan
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 11:10:05 pm

not the same. go over there, then over there and maybe back here and end up with something less quality that won't grade properly. no thank you. plus, add up all the extra time involved and imagine how horrendous that would be on a whole project. heck, imagine how much extra time is then needed to do just a scene with multiple takes.

as others feel. like I do, on how we expected to import raw dng files, 14 bit with a larger DR, do a first pass with ACR (where is the ACR pop up on import like expected??), edit then a final grade "using the original 14 bit raw source files".


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EricBowen
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 11:17:23 pm

I have done differential tests with DNG to Cineform and the difference is negligible. The conversion to Cineform is extremely quick if you don't need to bring into AE first. Maybe go try it and see first? I know 1 person was already reporting how nice it was in another forum here.

Eric-ADK
Tech Manager
support@adkvideoediting.com


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Steve Connor
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 11:19:11 pm

It's a shame, the roundtripping to Speedgrade is awesome!

Steve Connor

There's nothing we can't argue about on the FCPX COW Forum


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Gary Alan
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 11:51:08 pm

I have tried it, Eric. Everyone will have opinions on different workflows. If it works for you, then I respect that. It doesn't for me as I would like.

Gary


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Mel Matsuoka
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Nov 1, 2013 at 12:42:34 am

[Per Holmes] "This is kind of a mega deal-breaker, since the only reason anyone would use RAW in the first place would be to access the full tonal range."


I would have to strongly disagree with this. For myself, I was eagerly anticipating the CinemaDNG support in the PP update, if only because I hoped that we could offline BMCC raw footage without having to transcode it to ProRes first. It'd be nice to be able to access the raw settings from within the PP timeline, but at the offline stage, it's more important for us to be able to play the raw footage in any form, since the offline will get sent to me for colorcorrection anyways, it's not really a big deal that the offline editors cant tweak the BMC footage at the raw level.

I've been testing the CinemaDNG offline/colorgrade/roundtrip workflow between Premiere Pro 7.1 and Resolve 10RC3, and I'm shocked to discover that it actually works (even with speed changes!). The only downside is that CinemaDNG sequences dont play out of the PP Source Viewer window though my Decklink card, but it's still better than nothing.

I think you need to dial down your expectations of how exhaustive Adobe's feature updates should be. It should be clear to everyone by now that their new release model is to release new updates more often, but at a more iterative pace. It's certainly better than having to wait two years for them to release feature-complete updates, dont you think?



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Gary Alan
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Nov 1, 2013 at 1:08:10 am

Mel, I think you need to understand that not everyone works like you do. In fact, I can't believe anyone would edit offline anymore with all the technology we have these days. We had no choice, maybe 20 years ago, to offline, but today??

It's great that you are happy and enjoy what they give us today. But please do not tell others to lower expectations because that is what you choose to do.


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Mel Matsuoka
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Nov 1, 2013 at 2:49:22 am

[Gary Alan] "Mel, I think you need to understand that not everyone works like you do. In fact, I can't believe anyone would edit offline anymore with all the technology we have these days. We had no choice, maybe 20 years ago, to offline, but today??

It's great that you are happy and enjoy what they give us today. But please do not tell others to lower expectations because that is what you choose to do.
"



Gary,

I'm not telling anyone how or what they should do. If you go back and re-read the post that I was replying to, I hope you are able to see that I was offering a reasoned, contrary perspective to Per Holmes' rather dogmatic statement that current state of PP 7.1's raw CinemaDNG support is a "pointless non-feature", and that access to camera-raw settings within Premiere is "the one and the only reason anyone would use RAW in the first place". In other words, you are being the "pot" to my "kettle" by ascribing such workflow dogmatism to me.

The "offline vs. online" debate is as tiresome as "Mac vs. PC" debates. The bottom line is that if you don't understand the need for an offline-to-online workflow, then you probably have never had a need for such a workflow in the first place. If I was a one-man-band editor who is commonly faced with single-handedly dealing with the tasks of creative editorial, colorgrading, motion-graphics, sound and final finishing, then I would be in full agreement with you and Per Holmes that the lack of ACR support significantly diminishes the usefulness of CinemaDNG playback support.

But the reason why offline/online workflows still exist (and will continue to exist for a LONG time) is due to talent, and not necessarily technology. While it's within the realms of possibility to do everything that's required to finish a video project from entirely within a single NLE, it's an extraordinary rare person who possesses higher-than-average talent and experience in all of said tasks. For the type of work that I do (advertising-agency directed broadcast commercial work), the offline/online paradigm is de rigeur, because our clientele wants to work with people who specialize in the specific task they are hired for: For the same reason why you don't ask a carpenter to fix your toilet, even though he probably owns the same tools that a plumber does.

This is why the current lack of camera raw settings access in Premiere will not be missed by our offline editors. If they need to do a quick temp grade on a shot just to boost the exposure or desaturate the image in order to drive creative-editorial decisions, they'll almost always drop a simple 3-way color correction filter on the clip and do it that way, rather than dick around with a separate ACR window. Since I will end up removing any color correction settings they apply anyways, theres no need for them to deal with anything more complicated than that.

I wont speak for Adobe, but I would have to assume that they understand this, and as such, they are taking advantage of the software-update model of Creative Cloud in order to deliver basic––but necessary––functionality to CinemaDNG support, so as to appease people like me, who care more about realtime playback performance and workflow speed than having the ability to clumsily grade raw DNG files from an dedicated ACR window within Premiere itself. After all, what is the point of giving you access to the raw settings, if you cant even play the damn clip back in the first place?

This is what frustrates me about some of the complaints about CC. Back in the pre-CC days, people would whine and complain that Adobe wasn't responsive to the needs of their users by not delivering needed functionality on a time scale that we wanted them in. Yet, when they decide to release the same feature requests in a more "frequently-iterative" timeframe as they are now, people still complain that they don't deliver the things they want/need in a more feature-complete manner.

All my point was trying to make is that we should have a more rational perspective on the way Adobe is rolling these features out to us. CinemaDNG as a mainstream acquisition and editing format is in its literal infancy (the only reason why anyone cares about this format now is because of the existence and near ubiquity of the BMCC), so it stands to reason that Adobe needs time to get the feature right, and balancing basic performance and functionality vs trying to deliver a half-baked attempt at having feature parity with the ACR window in Photoshop.



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Gary Alan
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Nov 1, 2013 at 4:54:56 am

Mel, I read one sentence and I felt I had no need to read the rest of you babbling on. And I said it's great that you are happy with what you do. I say a few meaningful sentences and you reply with five? paragraphs? LOL
I merely pointed out to you why we who shoot raw want to use it for it's main reason, 14 bit source files. Not some offline workaround using some intermediate codec like cineform. We have been doing what you suggest for a long time now and hopefully we want to get away from those workarounds and round trips. Don't get your panties all in a bunch.


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Mel Matsuoka
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Nov 1, 2013 at 5:05:04 am

[Gary Alan] "Mel, I read one sentence and I felt I had no need to read the rest of you babbling on. And I said it's great that you are happy with what you do. I say a few meaningful sentences and you reply with five? paragraphs? LOL
I merely pointed out to you why we who shoot raw want to use it for it's main reason, 14 bit source files. Not some offline workaround using some intermediate codec like cineform. We have been doing what you suggest for a long time now and hopefully we want to get away from those workarounds and round trips. Don't get your panties all in a bunch."



Thanks very much for the thoughtful response, Gary! Much appreciated.



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Owain Hopkins
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Nov 5, 2013 at 9:36:47 am

Hello,

I too have this problem and this is the best workaround I could figure out.

1. Put 'Black Video' into a Premiere sequence and then 'Replace with after effects sequence

2. When in AE, import the DNG files and place into the premiere linked sequence (I convert them to proxies because my computer isn't very fast)

3. Go back and edit the linked sequence in Premiere. And best of all, if you need to edit the raw files, open them in Camera raw, synchronize every DNG image in a shot, save them and they should then link through to AE (after you reload the file) which in turn links through to Premiere.

Bit of a fiddle but at least it's non destructive. Hope it makes sense?

Owain


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Leo Telles
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Jun 7, 2014 at 8:07:44 pm

In the next update!

http://www.lynda.com/Premiere-Pro-tutorials/Blackmagic-CinemaDNG-support-so...


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Mark Baluk
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Jun 19, 2014 at 2:13:58 am

actually, no. that update does NOTHING to help this original issue.


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Danielle MacDonald
Re: PP 7.1 CinemaDNG forced to video levels?
on Jul 13, 2015 at 11:32:30 pm

Has there been any update to this at all? Struggling


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