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Color on output not matching color CRX in FCP

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Evan Blackford
Color on output not matching color CRX in FCP
on Aug 8, 2014 at 10:56:46 pm

Never seen this before...My output is getting totally washed out. Does not seem to be accepting my FCP color CRX settings (used color corrector 3-Way).

Here's a screen grab illustrating the difference between what I am seeing in FCP and what I am seeing on my output in QuickTime:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/dio51mjzs4mu1g4/Screenshot%202014-08-08%2015.34.2...

Up top is my QT output. Very washed out.

Upper right is the QT Inspector with data for this file.

Below is my color corrected image in FCP.

In FCP, I chose "Export --> Quicktime Movie --> Item Settings/Self Contained"

Usually I go with "Export --> Using Quicktime Conversion." But I don't want a conversion. I just want it to look exactly like the sequence with no loss of generation if possible.

Any advice? Do I need to select a beefier format? The sequence is just ProRes 422 (Proxy). I was under the impression that a bigger format on export can't look any better than the source, so I didn't bother with anything bigger. But why am I losing so much color on export? Why so washed out?

Any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks,
Evan


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Shane Ross
Re: Color on output not matching color CRX in FCP
on Aug 8, 2014 at 11:08:00 pm

Shane's Stock Answer #49 - Why is the Quicktime Movie I made much lighter than what I see in my timeline in FCP?

Because it is designed to be bright enough to be seen on most monitors, some that might be too dark. But, if you want to see the same image you see in your FCP timeline, just open Quicktime, and in the Quicktime Player's preferences window under the General tab you can choose to Enable Final Cut Studio color compatibility.

Shane
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Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Evan Blackford
Re: Color on output not matching color CRX in FCP
on Aug 8, 2014 at 11:28:23 pm

Thanks Shane. Your #49 is a pretty nice stock answer, and certainly a quick one! But I still have a problem: it doesn't matter that much how much it looks on my system. I only opened it in QT to see how it would (approximately) look to my client. If I set my local QT to match FCP's color, that won't change the file, right? Just the way the file looks to me on playback?

What I want is for my color CRX in FCP to reasonably match what most clients will see when I output. I know there is a lot LOT of variability in playback scenarios. But my expectation would be that when I see something in the Canvas, I'm doing my color CRX there to get pretty close to the average of what most people will see. At least when I select "Use Current Settings" on my output and I'm not doing any conversion at all. But these are TOTALLY different. Like not even in the same ballpark. More different than what I'm used to.

Any other ideas? Thanks again for your quick reply.

-Evan


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Shane Ross
Re: Color on output not matching color CRX in FCP
on Aug 8, 2014 at 11:34:37 pm

[Evan Blackford] "What I want is for my color CRX"

What does that mean? "color CRX?"

[Evan Blackford] "What I want is for my color CRX in FCP to reasonably match what most clients will see when I output. I know there is a lot LOT of variability in playback scenarios."

Well, then you shouldn't be using FCP. FCX's interface looks more like it will look like when you output. I matches what you export better, because it was designed for that purpose. FCP 7 and earlier, was not. Those are not accurate at all, just a means of seeing what you can do.

People working in TV like me use Video IO cards (aja.com, decklink.com, matrox.com) and a broadcast monitor or TV in order to see a color accurate output on TVs. If you are doing it for the web, then you might need something else for this...something designed to show you color accurate exports to QT or MP4. I think PPro is even more accurate.

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


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Evan Blackford
Re: Color on output not matching color CRX in FCP
on Aug 9, 2014 at 12:32:42 am

Cool, thanks again for your reply, Shane. CRX are corrections.

What you say makes good sense. I have thus far avoided any major changes to my workflow for a while, but the good times had to come to an end eventually, I suppose. In the meantime, I'll just trial and error it with some rough "make it a bit darker" adjustments, till I can get it close to OK. And longer term, the solutions you laid out seem like a great place to start my quest.

All the best,
EB


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