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destro

After Effects linear workflow hassles

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I'm using After Effects CS5 and am having a couple of problems with Linear workflow.

 

- I can't find a way to display a linear image adjusted for both my computer monitor and broadcast monitor simultaneously. AE displays a linear image perfectly on my computer monitor but seems to send an unadjusted image to my Blackmagic card (it's way too dark). I've found the 'color profile converter' effect that I can use to correct the display on the broadcast monitor but at the expense of making the computer monitor preview too bright. Is there any way to tell AE or the Blackmagic card I want the linear image adjusted before being output to the broadcast monitor? Are there broadcast monitors available that can directly take an unadjusted linear image?

 

-I use Color Finesse 3 for any advanced colour work where I need to see scopes. The problem I've got is the full Color Finesse 3 interface doesn't seem to have an option to display linear images adjusted for display on a computer monitor.

 

I love the quality boost that comes from using a linear workflow but these preview problems are a pain in the ass. I'm kinda hoping I've missed a piece of the puzzle and someone can tell me what I'm missing.

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No, the video preview is not color managed. The workaround that you've discovered using the Color Profile Converter is the best that I have to suggest.

 

This is a feature request that we get every now and then, but so far not from enough people to make it to the top. If you think it needs to be a priority, let us know here:

http://www.adobe.com/go/wish

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The benefit of using Linear Workflow does not outweigh the hassle. I keep it off.

I wish After Effects could tell when it's being used so I didn't have to interpret footage every time.

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I've found the 'color profile converter' effect that I can use to correct the display on the broadcast monitor but at the expense of making the computer monitor preview too bright.

Did you try turning off "Use Display Color Management" in View menu?

That should fix the double gamma compensation in the composition window.

Are there broadcast monitors available that can directly take an unadjusted linear image?

You could use any 3D LUT box to apply an sRGB/Rec.709 gamma curve to your HDMI/SDI output.

ex. http://www.lightillusion.com/eecolor.html

The benefit of using Linear Workflow does not outweigh the hassle. I keep it off.

IMO, even the simplest operations (opacity fades, image blends, soft edge masks, motion blur etc.) look more photographic in a linear float workflow.

I agree that you need log footage (cineon, dpx) where there is a set relationship between real ratios of light in the scene and the pixels in the file or 3D CGI (OpenEXR) with overbright values to really appreciate using this workflow.

Edited by Sen

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No, the video preview is not color managed. The workaround that you've discovered using the Color Profile Converter is the best that I have to suggest.

 

This is a feature request that we get every now and then, but so far not from enough people to make it to the top. If you think it needs to be a priority, let us know here:

http://www.adobe.com/go/wish

 

Thanks Todd. I've submitted a feature request.

 

 

 

The benefit of using Linear Workflow does not outweigh the hassle. I keep it off.

I wish After Effects could tell when it's being used so I didn't have to interpret footage every time.

 

Despite the hassle I still find it's worth it. Hopefully before too long it will become a technicality that the software handles behind the scenes.

 

SEN: Awesome technical info. Much appreciated.

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