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Mixing .r3d and .dpx and finishing in COLOR with VFX from After Effects

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Dustin Bowser
Mixing .r3d and .dpx and finishing in COLOR with VFX from After Effects
on Sep 8, 2010 at 2:13:46 am

I've got a project that I'm currently trying to hammer out a workflow for that I could use some help from guys smarter than I.

The project was shot on the Mysterium, and I edited offline with 1080p ProRes 422 rendered out of RedCine-X. I want to do my final color grade in Apple Color. Using Clipfinder to conform my offline edit back to .R3D's and getting them into Color is easy -- EXCEPT.....I have a few shots that have to go through After Effects for visual FX.

My plan (which I'm currently testing) is to work with the .R3D's natively in After Effects, do all the VFX and Compositing as needed, and then rendering out to .DPX and bringing the shots back into Final Cut to marry it back with the rest of my edit using the Final Cut Glue Tools plugins.

So far so good. Now within Color, I have mostly .R3D's which I can use the RED tab to pull all kinds of glorious image detail out of the incredibly blown out windows. The Problem though, is that that same detail doesn't exist in the .DPX shots that came out of After Effects.

I've been doing some reading and came across something that says Apple Color has a limitation in that it will clip .dpx files at 10 bit. I also read, however, that it is LINEAR 16 bit .DPX's that it clips to 10 bit, but a 10bit LOG .DPX can hold as much or MORE data than the LINEAR 12bit of the .R3D.

So my thought -- is there anyway to render my VFX and Composites out of After Effects as a 10 bit LOG file and bring that into Color so that all of my footage has the same (or roughly the same) amount of Latitude.

If anyone has any better idea for a workflow, please let me know. I'm all ears! Thanks!


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Chris Wright
Re: Mixing .r3d and .dpx and finishing in COLOR with VFX from After Effects
on Sep 8, 2010 at 3:19:21 am

I'm confused, why don't you just stay with r3d all the way through the pipeline.

Red provides native REDCODE media (R3D) support for Final Cut Pro and Color.

http://technicolorsoftware.hostzi.com/


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Dustin Bowser
Re: Mixing .r3d and .dpx and finishing in COLOR with VFX from After Effects
on Sep 8, 2010 at 3:45:57 am

Because, my VFX shots are coming from Final Cut, into After Effects, and then rejoining the rest of the edit in Apple Color for the Final Grade. In After Effects, the shots are composited, but then must be rendered out as something. I'm just looking to render back out to the highest color/bit depth file that Apple Color will read so that I can maintain all my data in my highlights and whatnot.


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Chris Wright
Re: Mixing .r3d and .dpx and finishing in COLOR with VFX from After Effects
on Sep 8, 2010 at 6:08:26 am

Have you ever used dpx files before?

linear 10 bit is a lot smaller than linear 16 bit which is 64 bits total. but log is exponental so is like 1024 bits.

Here's a good read about rolloff errors and roundtripping cineon's
http://magazine.creativecow.net/article/cineon-files-what-they-are-and-how-...

read this to get AE interpretations working with RED
-updates for RED (R3D) footage and new REDCODE plug-in
http://blogs.adobe.com/toddkopriva/2009/05/after-effects-902-update-red-r.h...

http://technicolorsoftware.hostzi.com/


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Dustin Bowser
Re: Mixing .r3d and .dpx and finishing in COLOR with VFX from After Effects
on Sep 8, 2010 at 6:24:48 pm

Hey Chris,

Thanks for those links. I was reading that Cineon article yesterday. It was really helpful. The issue though is, the footage in After Effects is native .R3D so I'm viewing my clips normally, and I have all the color depth there at my fingertips. I just want to render out of After Effects into a format that maintains all that color information so I can grade in Apple Color. I know that within After Effects I can grade down my highlights and everything else to maintain all that data, but I just want to be working with something in Apple Color that has all that information. Color DOES support the import of 10 bit log DPX. Really all I need to know is how to Render out of After Effects at 10 bit log. For some reason, I'm having a hard time finding any kind of documentation on this.


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Chris Wright
Re: Mixing .r3d and .dpx and finishing in COLOR with VFX from After Effects
on Sep 8, 2010 at 7:45:44 pm

utility-cineon converter -linear to log then simply render out a full dpx/cineon.

It's up to you what color management you want. Some people like using linear light like in this post. Others stay in hdtv for r3d for simplicity. Others use advanced Lut management.

Remember to select in output module your color management that you want.
http://www.fxguide.com/fxtips-316.html

http://technicolorsoftware.hostzi.com/


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