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First time dealing with colorshift problem in FCP/Quicktime

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Jonathan Frank
First time dealing with colorshift problem in FCP/Quicktime
on Dec 23, 2012 at 9:20:45 pm

I've been editing video on a Mac and in Final Cut Pro since version 2 and this is the first time I've had a huge problem with a shift in color from what I see on the canvas to what is exported - and the first time I've noticed that that problem/shift only happens when the footage is viewed in an Apple program (Quicktime or Safari when uploaded to Vimeo). Opening the footage in VLC or viewing the upload on Firefox? Looks gorgeous. But on Safari or Quicktime? Colors are muted and have a greenish cast.

The footage is for website/computer usage so looking at it on my monitor should be a good indicator. And I've had others look at it and some have commented on the green cast.

So I'm not sure what to do - how best to give it to the client.

Workflow: footage is ProRes HQ, shot in 1080, shrunk to 720 to make 'artificial second cam close-up' (don't ask...). Edited in Final Cut Pro, but I've been going back and forth with it in Adobe Premiere Pro to try and tweak the picture color and contrast, as I've been liking the filters in Premiere better than FCP lately.

I've exported it as ProRes and used Adobe Media Converter to compress (been using both the Vimeo 720 preset - and tried upping the bitrate, setting quality to max rendering - and the Broadcast 720 preset).

Only time I've gotten it to look good when opening on Quicktime is when I export it as Animation versus ProRes.

So my question is...what is the best way to export this footage, either in Premiere Pro or FCP, to get the right color cast in Quicktime based computers and non-Quicktime using computers.

I've uploaded a screenshot of the footage opened in Safari and Quicktime (left side) and Firefox and VLC (right side) on Flikr:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/44843717@N04/8300689101/

Thanks for any advice. Of course I need to get this to client before I leave for holiday vacation in a few days !



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Rafael Amador
Re: First time dealing with colorshift problem in FCP/Quicktime
on Dec 24, 2012 at 3:18:10 am

[Jonathan Frank] "The footage is for website/computer usage so looking at it on my monitor should be a good indicator."
That if your monitor is OK.
The only way to be sure that your color are correct, is by using an external pro monitor fed by an standard signal. Out of that, there are too many variables to know where the color/gamma shifts come from; Codecs, players, screens,..
I work with two computers screens (MBP & Dell-U24), a PANA Plasma TV and an external pro monitor connected through an AJA card. The last one is the only one I trust. If my Prores masters looks Ok on this one, I don't care how they look somewhere else because I know they will look different on any other screen or with any other player or when compressed to other codec, but that's not my fault.
You can't make an "universal' movie that looks the same everywhere.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Jonathan Frank
Re: First time dealing with colorshift problem in FCP/Quicktime
on Dec 24, 2012 at 3:30:05 am

Normally I'd throw caution to the wind and agree that if it looks good on my computer (and normally everything has looked good and consistent - what I see in ProRes is what I will get (or pretty darn close) when I compress to h.264.

Of course this client has turned problem child. And of course this footage is showing the most discrepancies when I look on other computers (or even using different programs and browsers on my computer).

I'm having x264 thrown at me elsewhere, so maybe trying that in Sorrenson Squeeze is an option...



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Rafael Amador
Re: First time dealing with colorshift problem in FCP/Quicktime
on Dec 24, 2012 at 7:33:33 am

Hi Jonathan,
Sorry I read your mail too fast before.
For what I see the greenish cast is in all the picture although in the pictures at the left may seem more obvious because the Gamma.
Try exporting an x264. Get your self the x264 QT Component and make sure that you chck the "Gamma 2.2" flag.
Anyway I would try adding a bit of magenta to the picture, to try to balance the greenish cast.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Jonathan Frank
Re: First time dealing with colorshift problem in FCP/Quicktime
on Dec 24, 2012 at 1:33:23 pm

Yeah, it's very grey on grey (with an interviewee who is also very grey). But as the other is very VERY pink (plus it looks perfect in some circumstances and adding anything makes it look horrid in those).

Trying Sorenson Squeeze as Adobe doesn't seem to have any sort of xh264 capabilities for Mac (there's a plug in for Windows only) and the major Quicktime download site is closed (and the downloadable version is for Snow Leopard and isn't giving me confidence it won't screw things up in Mountain Lion)



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Rafael Amador
Re: First time dealing with colorshift problem in FCP/Quicktime
on Dec 26, 2012 at 1:42:14 am

Hi Jonathan,
For the x264, you can use HandBrake.
About the color on the picture, the skin tones are not too bad. Try to get rid of the green on the shadows.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Mark Linthicum
Re: First time dealing with colorshift problem in FCP/Quicktime
on Aug 1, 2015 at 12:27:14 am

Wow so many years and no solution?

This is so frustrating. I can believe Apple is screwing with us this way!

Seems like propel don't get the issue here, just doing a little color correction to try to get it to match is not really helpful. The is a major issue, major color shifts from one program to another , I thought his was solved 6 years ago but it seems to be back.

Mark

Thanks, Mark


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