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Color management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube

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Greg SageColor management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube
by on Feb 20, 2014 at 6:01:05 pm
Last Edited By Greg Sage on Feb 20, 2014 at 6:05:01 pm

I've been asking about bit depth, but I'm beginning to see just how much bigger the real question is, and I'm nearly dizzy after a couple days of reading on color management, so let's see if I can get things narrowed down:

Using a hacked GH2 to do greenscreen footage, then using After effects to combine with C4D renders, jpg backgrounds, GH2 footage, and a dizzying array of effects and layers to make music videos which will be on my site and youtube.

Looking for basic formula for color management. Here's what I think I've learned so far:

GH2 is 8 bit color.

Internal color space for AE: 16 bit / sRGB / Linearize working space / compensate for scene referred profiles.

Watch out for 8 bit effects.

Calibrate monitor (colormunki on order).

Right so far?

And I've got the YT 1080/29.97 preset for Media Encoder, though not sure what my exact settings should be coming out of AE.



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Dave LaRondeRe: Color management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube
by on Feb 20, 2014 at 10:39:52 pm
Last Edited By Dave LaRonde on Feb 21, 2014 at 1:50:58 am

To be perfectly honest, I've never had any problems with colors and I have not even once given color management a thought, and I've been using AE since 1996.... and I put stuff on the air for a TV station every day.

That color management stuff is for the people with the fancy-schmancy cameras that cost as much as a sports car, in my book.

If you really intend to shoot green screens with a DSLR, I'd be worried more about the color resolution (aka color sampling) and the codec to which the camera records than I would about color management.

Dave LaRonde
Promotion Producer
KGAN (CBS) & KFXA (Fox) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Greg SageRe: Color management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube
by on Feb 21, 2014 at 1:50:18 pm

Well, that's really more what I'm talking about. I mess with the footage quite a bit, and am more concerned with it looking good than necessarily looking "correct."

Doing basic white balance, and shooting with supposedly flat settings on camera, but no MacBeth chart or anything.

Really just trying to work out the technical settings going from camera to Youtube. Camera is what it is. Not ideal, and not 4:2:2, but GH2 is what I could afford.

Specifically, I'm wondering about setting from AE on out... so project settings, render settings, compression settings. Since ultimately using Media Encoder for the last step with the built in YT preset, if I get the first two right, that should take care of itself.

So, am I right so far in that I should be doing:

PROJECT SETTINGS
________________

16 bit
sRGB
Linearize color space
Adjust for embedded


RENDER SETTINGS
_______________

?????????


MEDIA ENCODER SETTINGS
______________________

YT 1920x1080, 8Mbps preset


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Dave LaRondeRe: Color management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube
by on Feb 21, 2014 at 6:17:47 pm

Depending on the codec and media container of the footage, all those color management concerns may be 1) irrelevant, 2) unnecessary or even 3) counter-productive.

So what's the codec and media container of the footage?

Dave LaRonde
Promotion Producer
KGAN (CBS) & KFXA (Fox) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Greg SageRe: Color management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube
by on Feb 22, 2014 at 2:45:12 pm
Last Edited By Greg Sage on Feb 22, 2014 at 3:16:27 pm

I'll answer to the best of my ability. If I need to be looking at something else, just let me know.

The files coming off the GH2 are .MTS files which are 1080p AVCHD.

So... is that an AVCHD file in a .MTS wrapper?

Can't control the file type off the camera, but from that point, I can choose everything else. If it needs to be transcoded, re-wrapped, or whatever, I can choose the settings.

So... convert to ProRes422 and .mov before editing? mp2? I've been quite unhappy with the keys I've gotten despite good lighting and the use if Intra-Frame 1080p setting on camera... not sure if my choice of conversion formats could have affected that.

I'm also combining that footage with jpg files, and png files half of which I create, and half of which I find. Then combining that with c4d output. Again, I can choose any output settings I want for the C4d stuff since I'm creating it.

Really, the only limitation I have in there anywhere is how the files come off the camera... which is avchd files in a .mts wrapper. Everything else can flow however I set it up.

Does that help, or do I need to be looking at some other aspect?


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Dave LaRondeRe: Color management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube
by on Feb 25, 2014 at 2:05:05 am

I don't think you even need to bother with color management. If you're transcoding the DSLR footage to ProRes before you go to AE -- which is ALWAYS a good thing to do in my book -- I'd say you'll be just fine without color management worries.

Dave LaRonde
Promotion Producer
KGAN (CBS) & KFXA (Fox) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Greg SageRe: Color management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube
by on Feb 25, 2014 at 3:31:20 am

ok

so just 16 bit, no color management?

Is there something in particular I need to be aware of in process of transcoding? Settings available somewhere? Preferred program?


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Dave LaRondeRe: Color management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube
by on Feb 25, 2014 at 4:52:53 pm
Last Edited By Dave LaRonde on Feb 25, 2014 at 5:36:35 pm

Since you mention ProRes, it implies cutting in FCP; don't know what version. In Legacy FCP, you do a Log & Transfer, and you can go directly to ProRes 422. In FCPX, you may work in native codecs and have to transcode for AE... but I don't know FCPX, so I don't know the best way to do it.

Dave LaRonde
Promotion Producer
KGAN (CBS) & KFXA (Fox) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Greg SageRe: Color management: Flow chart from Greenscreen to Youtube
by on Feb 25, 2014 at 6:32:14 pm

Sorry, I think I've mentioned too many things confusing the issue a bit. I have no intention of using FCP.

I'm using the Adobe suite, and with so many layers and effects going constantly, it's done almost entirely in After Effects.

This should be a very easy thing to figure out. I only have one item I don't control output details for... the GH2 footage which is AVCHD .mts files.

Everything else like C4d footage, I can specify any output I like.

Videos are being done in AE. I only mention ProRes because other people have suggested I use those settings.

This should be a very straight forward issue as there are very few variables. It's just the same workflow over and over:

Flow = GH2 to After Effects To Media Encoder to Youtube with whatever the optimal steps are in between to get best use out of the greenscreen footage, and best possible viewer experience on YT.

I'm not saying I should use Pro Res. I'm asking what I should be using.


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