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Exporting to ProRes 422 (HQ) causing a darker image and/or banding...

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Matthew Scott
Exporting to ProRes 422 (HQ) causing a darker image and/or banding...
on Oct 22, 2013 at 10:01:31 pm

Hey guys,

I've been having a nightmare of a time completing this last music video and thought I'd reach out to see if any of you could help me. I think I've tried pretty much everything posted on here about similar issues.

My most recent problem is that when I try to export as PRORES 422 (HQ) from FCP (the format that the record label requires for VEVO), the picture is darker than what it is in the FCP display. the video is already dark and this completely ruins it. I've tried everything I can think of and this sounds like a fairly common problem with no solutions that I've tried that have worked.

It sounds like the Gamma might be changing on export?

I have tried turning off auto gamma correct.

I have tried the Gamma correction tool in FCP, only to cause the image to be brighter, but horrible banding strips.

The first export I did was through 'export through Quicktime Conversion'. There was no banding and it looked great aside from it being very dark.

I tried exporting 'As Quicktime Movie', as an online thread suggested - this got rid of the darkness, but caused horrible banding again.

I've tried exporting through Compressor - Darkness AND banding.

When I export through 'Quicktime Conversion' the picture looks great (no banding) but it's much too dark.

I have no idea what to do, and am really hoping someone knows the answer. I promised the record label the video last Friday as delivery time is crucial, so I haven't really slept in quite some time and I'm starting to want to smash things.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.

Matt.


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Exporting to ProRes 422 (HQ) causing a darker image and/or banding...
on Oct 22, 2013 at 10:33:53 pm

How have you calibrated your monitors?

Or, in other words, how do know that your video is too dark vs. your monitor being to bright? Keep in mind, a monitor that is set too bright would cause you go too dark when color correcting...

David Roth Weiss
ProMax Systems
Burbank
DRW@ProMax.com

Sales | Integration | Support

David is a Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Apple Final Cut Pro forum.


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Matthew Scott
Re: Exporting to ProRes 422 (HQ) causing a darker image and/or banding...
on Oct 22, 2013 at 10:44:46 pm

I've gone back and looked at the original colour corrected files and they are not nearly as dark on the same monitor. We corrected on another system than the one I am editing on. The files looked good there, they look good here, and they look good on my laptop. When I choose any Prores format as my export type, the little preview window turns from a lightness matching the corrected files (which I want) to the dark that is giving me issues... If I export in any of these formats that aren't previewing the darkness I am getting the awful banding. This is a Black and White project and the banding is really obvious. The dark prores file looks very crisp, but too dark. If I try correcting this, the banding appears.


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Shane Ross
Re: Exporting to ProRes 422 (HQ) causing a darker image and/or banding...
on Oct 22, 2013 at 10:49:17 pm

Also keep in mind that the editing interface monitors...meaning the VIEWER and CANVAS in FCP...aren't accurate at all. They aren't designed to be accurate. They are there to let you see what you are doing. If you edit for broadcast, you really need an IO card/device (AJA.com, Decklink.com) and an HDTV or Broadcast Monitor in order to see a true image. Because your computer displays are ALSO not calibrated for video accuracy. You can use scopes to adjust the monitors, but that's for photography, not video.

Also know that what you see in FCP and what you see in QT really doesn't match either...unless you enable FCP compatibilty in QT. That's in the QT PREFERENCES, in the GENERAL area. At the bottom...ENABLE FCP COLOR COMPATIBILITY.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Matthew Scott
Re: Exporting to ProRes 422 (HQ) causing a darker image and/or banding...
on Oct 22, 2013 at 11:01:17 pm

I'm not sure how any of this explains the different Codecs matching the colour that I see in FCP. This dark colour issue is exclusive to exporting as ProRes. And I'm not sure why I get this horrible banding when I export as anything else or through compressor as opposed to Quicktime Converter...


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Exporting to ProRes 422 (HQ) causing a darker image and/or banding...
on Oct 22, 2013 at 11:15:52 pm

First, what's your original? You never mentioned that... You simply told us you were transcoding something to Pro Res HQ. Not all camera original has the same capabilities when transcoded, because the camera original can have color space from 4:0:0 up 4:4:4 and anything in between.

Also, banding on a computer monitor is can be related to a zillion factors, including the color space you're transcoding to and from that I asked you about above - i.e. from what to Pro Res.

Please keep in mind, there are lots of very knowledgeable people who try to answer problems for folks here like yourself Matthew, who may not know every piece of the puzzle. And so, guys like Shane and myself often have to drag more info out of people. Trust me, it's more frustrating for us than you, because we've been answering questions here for years and years.

David Roth Weiss
ProMax Systems
Burbank
DRW@ProMax.com

Sales | Integration | Support

David is a Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Apple Final Cut Pro forum.


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Matthew Scott
Re: Exporting to ProRes 422 (HQ) causing a darker image and/or banding...
on Oct 22, 2013 at 11:24:20 pm

We shot on Red Scarlet, Did the colouring in RedCine and exported from there to ProRes 4444. My colourist told me that I would be able to export to ProRes 422 (HQ) without losing any quality.


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Shane Ross
Re: Exporting to ProRes 422 (HQ) causing a darker image and/or banding...
on Oct 23, 2013 at 12:18:23 am

The file you are exporting is fine. You just lack the proper means of judging quality. If you looked at the original on an external monitor, then exported what you did, reimported that and looked at it on an external monitor...that's how you judge the difference.

What you see in FCP is different than what you see in QT...unless you enable FCP COLOR COMPATIBILITY.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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