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AE, ICC color profiles, QuickTime player and wide gamut displays

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Simon Cam
AE, ICC color profiles, QuickTime player and wide gamut displays
on Feb 13, 2012 at 10:57:53 am

Hey there!

I posted this the other day on the Adobe AE forum, but no-one's yet chipped in so I was wondering if anyone here could shed any light.

I was inspired by @AdobeAE 's recent tweet about color management to look further into the subject. We've historically not bothered with it, but are keen to enter the color managed world!

I started in Photoshop, doing tests with working spaces and destination spaces to get my head around how the whole thing works. One thing I quickly gathered was that our Monitors (Eizo S2243W) are wide gamut, which can create problems. For example, if you make an image in the sRGB space in PS, then save it out as a jpeg without embedding the profile, the colours become over-saturated, as any viewing application won't know how to translate the colors. Images created in the Adobe 1998 did not display the same shift when saved 'untagged' - I assume because the gamut of the monitor is closer to Adobe 1998, so even if no transformation occurs the colours are perceptually similar.

For still images all this is fine though, as you can always embed the profile so the viewing app knows how to translate the colours for your particular display.

The problem comes with video. It seems as though it is not possible to embed a color profile with, say, a ProRes QuickTime. If you create a comp in AE using the sRGB colour space, then export the movie you'll potentially have the same over saturated colour problem when viewing the resulting file on a wide gamut display.

So how is one supposed to overcome this, except for turning colour management off?

Any help greatly apprecaited!

Cheers, sCam

Simon Cam
Creative Technical Director

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Chris Wright
Re: AE, ICC color profiles, QuickTime player and wide gamut displays
on Feb 13, 2012 at 1:22:19 pm

if the codec or video player doesn't support the embedded profile tag, you can burn in the color change with Ae's utility color profile converter. just turn off color management and it should give the exact same results, but as long as the software supports the interpretation profile, it shouldn't matter if your viewer, ie. vlc fails miserably.

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